There was good news and bad news for the Miss Universe Pageant on Sunday. The good news was that Miss Spain, a man who identifies as a woman, did not win. The bad news was that a man who identifies as a woman was even in the pageant.

News outlets have been praising both the Miss Universe Pageant and Miss Spain, Angela Ponce, who was born male, for making history as the pageant’s first transgender contestant.

It’s not just the Miss Universe Pageant that’s allowing men who believe they are women to compete as women. In Australia, a six-foot-two, 220 pound man, Callum Mouncey, switched from men’s to women’s handball. Australia placed 5th in the recent World Women’s Handball Championships, with Mouncey scoring 23 goals. Mouncey also plays women’s Australian rules football.

In October, a biological male who identifies as a woman won the 2018 UCI Masters Track Cycling World Championships in the women’s sprint 35-39 age bracket. A philosophy professor at the College of Charleston, Dr. McKinnon is a self-described athlete, academic and activist.

In Brazil, a 6 foot 4 inch tall volleyball player who was born Rodrigo Abreu is dominating women’s professional volleyball as “Tiffany.” Last June, two biologically male teens took first and second in the Connecticut girls’ state championships in the 100 meter dash. A New Zealand weightlifter, born male, won the Australian international women’s competition in March of this year, lifting 591 pounds.

Of course men and women are different, and many of those differences remain even after hormones and surgery. In sports, those physical differences give men significant advantages.

In each of these incidents, real women and girls are denied success in areas where they may have practiced, trained and worked for years. Examples like these are proliferating, as the media, academia and businesses – and now beauty pageants and sports – embrace transgender ideology.

Rather than a cause for celebration, all this seems more like a reason for Christians to grieve and pray:

  • For individuals who are confused, experience deep mental anguish and who hate their biological sex.
  • For our modern world’s flight from reality and truth as it embraces transgender ideology – and especially for children who are being indoctrinated into this worldview.
  • For our culture’s ongoing turn from biblical truth.
  • For women and girls who lose out when men and boys compete in their events.
  • For the families of those affected by transgender-identified family members.
  • For loss of privacy and safety – especially for women and girls – when transgender-identified individuals have access to showers, changing rooms and restrooms of the opposite sex.

As we pray for those caught in this deception, we can continue to proclaim the truth of God’s love for all. We can teach our children and grandchildren about His creation of humanity as male and female in His image. And we can tell others of the salvation and transformation that He brings – even to those struggling with deep sexual sin and brokenness.

Resources for Families:

For help explaining transgender ideology to children who encounter this topic, read “Talking to Your Children About Transgender Issues.”

When you encounter transgenderism in your school, family, or local gym, “When Transgender Issues Enter Your World” offers guidance for responding well.

“Transgender Resources” lists all Focus on the Family articles, books and broadcasts on this topic.