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Christians risk reprisals for gay marriage support

You so often see stories about Christians trying to rob gays of their human and civil rights that it’s remarkable and refreshing to see a story like this one.

On Monday a group of United Methodists from New York and Connecticut will release a list of pastors who plan to perform weddings for homosexual couples despite the denomination’s ban on gay marriage.

The We do! Methodists Living Marriage Equality project consists of 161 clergy members, 703 lay people and six congregations representing 67 United Methodist congregations who will risk their standing and jobs with the church by announcing their support for equal rights for the LGBT community.

Credit where credit is due.

Comments

  1. John Morales says

    Credit where credit is due.

    Sure.

    These people, in this matter, by acting against their denomination are better than Catholics or Muslims who don’t.

  2. opposablethumbs, que le pouce enragé mette les pouces says

    Good for them. Just goes to show that it is, occasionally, possible to be moral despite being religious.

  3. Cuttlefish says

    Such individuals need to be applauded and pointed out. Those who fight for bigotry in the name of religious freedom would force the state to take a legal stance against the will of these christians. A “traditional marriage” amendment would clearly put the state in the business of telling these ministers what they can and cannot do in their own domain.

    One would think that even bigoted christians would be frightened by that prospect. But as long as they feel they have, even temporarily, the votes behind their own view, why look at the long term?

  4. Capt'n John says

    It takes remarkably brave people to bring about change in a society. Rosa Parks, Harvey Milk, Medgar Evers are names of people have stood for civil rights in America, yet they would not have succeeded were it not for the unnamed people who stood behind them. These ministers and their congregations are providing support to equal rights for the LGBT community and they will help make the difference.

  5. says

    Many years before gay marriage (or civil partnerships) existed in the UK I went to a gay friend’s wedding. She’d been with her partner for about five years and they wanted to tie the knot and make a public declaration of their love for one another in front of their friends and family.

    They were religious and went to an Anglican church. They asked the vicar if they could marry in the church. He checked and told them that the diocese forebode gay marriage. So he married them anyway. He didn’t use the church and he didn’t make a public statement about defying church rules. He performed the ceremony in the local pub and blessed them in the name of the god that they all believed in.

    As is traditional for such events he gave a little speech about love and commitment. One point that I specifically remember was that he said that he couldn’t believe in a God who could condemn two people for loving one another. Though he couldn’t read God’s mind he felt that God celebrates love above all things, even if the rules of his church do the opposite. I thought it was a nice sentiment and dutifully clapped even though I thought that he was just trying to align his own views with the God that he’d read about and sort out his own cognitive dissonance.

    I’m not sure if he could have done more but he is just about the only example of a Christian that I have who genuinely wanted to serve others. He made my friends happy on their big day and that is what was important to them and important to me. So good for the caring Christians who go against the stereotype that we’ve all grown to know and (not) love.

  6. Glodson says

    It is nice to see that people can understand that being gay isn’t bad at all. Here’s hoping that these Christians help kick off a larger movement in the religion that brings it away from homophobia and bigotry. I could deal with a religion that really does want to treat others with compassion and love without concern for their gender or sexuality.

  7. magistramarla says

    Back when we attended church, we attended an Episcopalian one in Ohio. The choir director and the lady in charge of Sunday School were a lesbian couple, and everyone in the church supported them. Newcomers who complained were directed to another Episcopalian church. We loved the attitudes in that little community and our children absorbed the tolerance and love that they saw there.
    Moving to Texas and experiencing the Episcopalian churches there convinced us that we were much better off being Atheists.
    Some church communities are (or at least used to be) sane. It is unfortunate that the fundies have taken over.

  8. grumpyoldfart says

    Good publicity for the church – ropes in a few more suckers – increases the amount of cash on the collection plate – but the story they’re selling is still a load of codswallop.

  9. says

    A “traditional marriage” amendment would clearly put the state in the business of telling these ministers what they can and cannot do in their own domain.

    Thinking through the implications of their ideas isn’t a strong suit among religious conservatives. They rarely do the thought experiments required to see if their new laws could be used against them.
    This is why they can get behind prayer in school–they think no further than “kids need to pray, put God back in the classroom” and so forth. If you asked them whether the government should have power over their religious lives, forcing them to imagine themselves as potential victims, you might get a different answer.
    Of course, they might not see any contradiction, preferring to pretend it’s the same answer.

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