PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- On the day Billy Bean, MLB's ambassador of inclusion, visited the Mets at Sandy Alderson's invitation, Daniel Murphy found himself offering a perspective based on his religious beliefs.
Bean didn’t publicly say he was gay during his playing career. He discussed his story with Mets players Tuesday morning.
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"I disagree with his lifestyle," Murphy told NJ.com. "I do disagree with the fact that Billy is a homosexual. That doesn't mean I can't still invest in him and get to know him. I don't think the fact that someone is a homosexual should completely shut the door on investing in them in a relational aspect. Getting to know him. That, I would say, you can still accept them but I do disagree with the lifestyle, 100 percent."
Murphy added to the newspaper: "Maybe, as a Christian, ... we haven't been as articulate enough in describing what our actual stance is on homosexuality. We love the people. We disagree the lifestyle. That's the way I would describe it for me. It's the same way that there are aspects of my life that I'm trying to surrender to Christ in my own life. There's a great deal of many things, like my pride. I just think that as a believer trying to articulate it in a way that says just because I disagree with the lifestyle doesn't mean I'm just never going to speak to Billy Bean every time he walks through the door. That's not love. That's not love at all."
Asked earlier in the day about how his message is received by those who espouse similar beliefs, Bean said: "What's important is that if we have one or two people on a team that we might have exposed them to something they hadn't thought about before. I'm not here to change anybody or tell them that they're wrong. This is our country. We're allowed to be who and what we want. But I think the important thing is understanding the big picture -- that if you are a player on the Mets or in a big-league uniform, there's a huge responsibility that goes with that. And I think they can understand that regardless of what their personal opinion is of me. I can't be everybody's best friend."