I feel it’s time for the major faiths of the world to embrace and accept queer people, including welcoming them in their place of worship.

Homosexuality exists in many species innature. The human species is a part of nature, and we’re all a part of God’s creation. Why would God create queer people if he didn’t like them, and wanted them to suffer and make their life miserable?

A heterosexist society can make life challenging for many queer people, especially for youth who are at high risk ofsuicideand bullying. Homosexuality is no longer considered amental illnessbypsychiatrists, and there is no need for treatment, especially “conversion therapy,” which can do a lot of damage to a person’s spirit and self-identity.

Everything in life is diverse. It is not surprising therefore that sexuality is diverse. Diversity is a part of the miracle of creation. We should embrace this diversity as it has been with us since the beginning of time. Furthermore, queer people have contributed a huge amount to society despite the marginalization, discrimination and alienation they experience.

It’s unfortunate that the major faiths are generally not supportive of sexual and gender minorities. It’s important to remember that the only person who has the right to judge anyone is the Creator, and the God that I have come to know loves everyone especially the marginalized and oppressed equally.

I was raised in a Sikh family and was taught to always treat people with respect, dignity and equality, and to especially defend the rights of the weak and defenceless. I was taught to treat people how you want to be treated.

As such, I strongly believe no place of worship should be exclusionary or judge one group of people over another. A place of worship should welcome everyone who wishes to be embraced by God’s universal message of love.

The fact that queer people can still be put todeathin many countries around the world demonstrates how critical it is for people to act. This is a reminder that people will exploit their dominance and power to oppress a vulnerable minority.

The religious and political leaders of the world need to send a strong message that homophobia, heterosexism, transphobia and human rights abuses against sexual and gender minorities will not be tolerated. Those responsible for such crimes must be held accountable at the highest levels.

A society and civilization will be judged by history by how it treats its most marginalized and vulnerable members.

This post first appeared on Huffpost

Alex Sangha