Who is Bryce Brewer? Pastor sorry for bikini ban and not asking 'boys to control themselves'
A pastor, in a viral post from July 14 has apologized for prohibiting females from wearing bikinis at his youth summer camps, acknowledging that it was unfair to place 'the weight of purity' on the girls while not holding men accountable for being 'gross.' The pastor, Bryce Brewer, apologized on Facebook, saying how he came to see how unjust it was to educate females that their bodies 'need to be hidden,' while boys' bodies are OK to be seen. The plea for other youth pastors to 'stop being chauvinist' has since gone viral, with over 40,000 shares and thousands of comments.
The incident is reminiscent of that of Pastor Stewart-Allen Clarke, who asked women to be 'attractive' as men marry them for sex, and was slammed as sexist. In June this year, a Texas pastor made a shocking remark after the Stonewall Pride Parade in Wilton Manors which took the life of one person. “I think only one person died. So hopefully we can hope for more in the future,” he had said.
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In better news, Rev Megan Rohrer made history in May this year by becoming the first transgender Lutheran bishop in US ever.
Who is Bryce Brewer?
Bryce Brewer is a 42-year-old pastor from Spokane Valley, Washington, according to the Daily Mail. His bio on his website pegs him as a pastor, an emcee, a speaker and a host. "I have been speaking in some capacity since I was about 8 months old. My debut speaking event was a stand up comedy routine at my 6th grade graduation where I killed it. More recently, I have been pastoring for over 15 years speaking at several churches, youth ministries, events and retreats. I have also EmCee’d many events, given leadership talks, and hosted weekly trivia games," he writes on his website.
Brewer is currently the Communications Director with a background in screening firms and as a stand-up comic. He was born and raised in Eastern Washington and North Idaho, and said that he could never "escape it’s [sic] grasp". He graduated from the College at George Fox University in Newberg. After working in places like Vancouver, Washington and Hayden, Idaho, he always came back to Spokane. He is now a permanent resident of Post Falls, Idaho. "It is in my blood, and I can’t get it out," he claimed.
The pastor has worked in the non-profit world from Starbucks to the YMCA where he served as a summer camp counselor. He has also worked in insurance sales, marketing and sales. He is also a "licensed private investigator, improv actor, and even have officiated over 30 weddings".
Brewer has two children, Zane 20, and Savanna 13, and says he recently became engaged to the "love of [his] life", Katie, who has two children of her own. "We all love a quick Jackbox game on the Switch, randomly finding snakes on a hike, and testing out the swingability of a recently installed hammock," he said. Speaking about his children, Brewer said, "My son Zane is very musically gifted and has only been in 4 accidents in his short driving career. My daughter Savanna is extremely artistic and is always crafting and is routinely ready to try out her newest joke on anyone that will give her an audience."
On his wife, Brewer wrote: "My fiancee has become my writing partner for all my standup and her kids are often part of the first test run." He added: " I have an amazing brother, sister in law, niece and nephew that live in Port Orchard, WA; and my parents are semi-retired and live on the lake in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho."
What did Bryce Brewer say?
"So I need to issue an apology,' Bryce, who has a 20-year-old son, 13-year-old daughter, and two stepchildren, began his post. 'I have been a youth pastor on and off for over 20 years, and I have issued the ridiculous ultimatum to my female students at summer camp “ONE-PIECE SWIMSUITS ONLY.” First of all I am sorry." He went on to give concrete examples of why he now understands this wasn't the case. 'I'm sorry that I didn’t teach boys to control themselves.,' he added.
This is something he realized recently while shopping with his fiancée and her 10-year-old daughter, where they 'desperately looked for a cute one-piece that would be appropriate for camp.' Bryce still believes in the 'No Produce Rule,' which states that 'buns, bananas, and breasts' should be covered.
"But why are stomachs overtly sexual? Why is a little cleavage sinful? Why are women meant to feel they are responsible for men’s actual sin of lust?" he asked. "So I am sorry to all the students, especially female, that we subjugated to our rules. I am sorry to my female students as they desperately tried to search for a swimsuit in the days leading up to camp. I am sorry if you felt sexualized by us telling you to cover up. I am sorry I didn’t teach boys to be men, and laid that responsibility on young women."
His apology is now viral on the Internet and Brewer says he hopes he will inspire others not to make the same mistake he did. "The number one thing I hope comes from this is that we as leaders, especially in the church, would walk in humility and stop pretending we are the ones that have the answers," he said. "I truly am sorry, and my intention was to say that and to say that while my heart may have been in the right place, I missed the boat in this area."
Summing it up, Brewer said: "'Female students — Wear a swimsuit that lets you have fun,' he wrote. Male students — stop being disgusting and control yourself. Youth pastors (male especially) — stop being chauvinist and making female students feel bad for having breasts. And finally: 'Christians — live like Jesus."