Quakers have long been associated with the LGBT community, with the Quaker Book of Common Prayer and the Quakers’ Code of Conduct declaring the Church “an important part of the culture of the Quiverfull movement”.
In a statement on Facebook on Friday, Quaker leader Joel Osteen said he would not participate in the “political correctness brigade” and was “not in a position to be an advocate for any particular religion”.
Osteen, who was born in Iowa and is a Christian, was the first president of Quaker Theological Seminary in New York City and has previously been named as a member of the board of trustees for the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
He is a co-founder of The Quaker Center for Human Dignity and the board chair of The Human Rights Campaign, an organization that has been the most prominent champion of the LGBTQ community.
The Quaker Church has also been a frequent venue for the funerals of gay and transgender people.
On Saturday, Quakers held a service at the funeral home of Quakers Joel Obey and his wife, Mary.
In addition to the funerary, attendees also received a special Quaker blessing to honor the deceased and prayed together.