The problem for the Church has come from its assumption that its values are still the values of the moral majority. While people around the world have often historically used Christianity to justify prejudice and discrimination, it's a religion that has been interpreted to allow sexism, slavery and religious persecution. But when the layers of political red tape are stripped away, the very same doctrine has been used to fight it. And the Church has been fast to jump to the aid of the downtrodden. While initially Christians fought against Civil Rights, for slavery, against suffrage and for apartheid, the Church itself didn't. They never maintained that women, other races or other religions were sinful, because nothing in the Bible says that they are. But there's no avoiding that what few references there are to homosexuality in the Bible, they're not exactly positive.
Just as in any other time, people are stepping forward as supposed martyrs toward the cause of Christian morality. You just have to listen to what the American clerk Kim Davies has to say, whose refusal to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples in Kentucky caused both moral uproar and pious brow-beating, to see what many Christians still believe about LGBT people. So where does the Church - and by "the Church" I mean the collective official bodies of all denominations - actually stand? Nobody at all seems to know. Even when the Pope met with Davies, it was quickly followed by a disclaimer that he did not necessarily endorse or support the convicted felon's self-righteous and controversial views. Does the Pope agree with Davies? Probably. Can he feasibly recognise her stance as a religious crusade? Of course not. Even His Holiness himself is being forced to now shrug off the question of the morality of homosexuality with a non-committal "Who am I to judge?" When have Popes ever sat on the fence like THIS before?
In any other time, Kim Davies would have been welcomed to the bosom of the Church like a living saint. She stood up for her faith, took a stance against her supposed oppressors and was punished for not giving in. But the narrative is different now. On this matter, western states and their societies are not on the same side as the Church. And for that reason, this is an unknown entity for them. Is the Church eventually going to officially accept LGBT equality? Is this change a reluctant inevitability? Or is that just wishful thinking? But the time is quickly approaching for them to make that choice. Because for many, the damage is already done.