Activists representing bullied teens of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community (LGBT) have asked actor Kirk Cameron to have lunch with them during his visit to Ocean Grove, N.J., where he will be speaking on biblical marriage.
"In a kind, respectful and constructive way, we'd like to talk to you about the pain your words about being LGBT have personally caused me and other LGBT youth," 17-year-old Corey Bernstein, a N.J. resident and co-chair of the Youth Caucus at Garden State Equality, wrote in a letter to Cameron and his manager.
"Mr. Cameron, words casting negative judgments about LGBT people not only perpetuate prejudice in our wider society, but also hurt LGBT youth in particular. Some of your public comments about being LGBT have devastated us LGBT youth. We yearn to grow up in a world that provides us dignity and safety. That is our simple, most heartfelt dream," Bernstein wrote.
The Youth Caucus at Garden State Equality is requesting that Cameron attend a lunch at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, July 28 at the home of a member of activist group Ocean Grove United. Members of Garden State Equality would also be present.
A spokesperson for Cameron told The Christian Post Wednesday that he was not previously aware of the group's lunch request. He added that Cameron's camp was unsure whether the former child star and outspoken Christian would respond to the LGBT youths' request, as several of Cameron's interviews have been "taken out of context."
The Youth Caucus at Garden State Equality is working in conjunction with Ocean Grove United, which is silently protesting Cameron's presentation in Ocean Grove on July 27 due to his Christian beliefs regarding homosexuality.
"We recognize that Kirk Cameron has a right to his own views regarding marriage, but we must hold him to account for his publicly stated denigrating words about homosexuality. Words hurt and they especially hurt young people," Ocean Grove United said in a statement emailed to The Christian Post.
Cameron, who starred in the hit 1980s sitcom "Growing Pains," is presenting a program entitled "Love Worth Fighting For" this Friday at the Great Auditorium in Ocean Grove. During the program, Cameron will speak on the importance of maintaining a strong bond in traditional marriage.
In light of Ocean Grove United's plan to protest the event, Cameron has previously said of the event that "all are welcome."
"I think everyone who comes to the 'Love Worth Fighting For' event in Ocean Grove or anywhere else we do this event will feel nothing but welcomed," Cameron told the Asbury Park Press.
"They will feel loved and cared about and they will be challenged to think about what marriage is really all about – we invite everyone, everyone is welcome," he added.
Cameron has previously been attacked for his Christian beliefs when he said in a March interview with "Piers Morgan Tonight" that he believes homosexuality is ""unnatural" and "detrimental, and ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of civilization."
The actor later went on numerous shows, including the "Today" show, to clarify that he does not condone the bullying of homosexuals, but rather loves everyone and is simply abiding by his Christian faith.