Last week, my church, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), reached a historic moment. Ten years after being put on trial by my church for presiding over the wedding of two women, I witnessed that same church embrace LGBT people and their families by affirming marriage as a “unique commitment between two people.” Though I am still […]
How the Presbyterian Church (USA) can find common ground and a space for gracious conversation continues to occupy my thoughts and imagination. In my latest post for More Light Presbyterians, I recount lessons learned from the movement to ordain women and the Kenyon case – forgotten history, perhaps, for some, but a vivid memory for […]
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has moved from the General Assembly in June, through a busy summer, and now turns toward church-wide consideration of the GA recommendation (14F) concerning section 4.9000 in the Directory for Worship on marriage. One of the special aspects of Presbyterianism is the opportunity given to every teaching elder and an equal […]
The Presbyterian Church (USA) faces difficult discussions ahead. Marriage is once again being is debated and discussed in presbyteries across the country as we consider recommendations from the 221st General Assembly, in particular, recommendation 14F. My thoughts turn to what it will take to inspire gracious, productive conversations about marriage in our church. For me, […]
This May, something I thought impossible happened: through the action of a federal court in Pennsylvania and the 221st General Assembly of the PCUSA, I was, for the first time, allowed to pursue my freedom of conscience to preside at weddings of loving same-gender couples in my home state. Freedom of conscience is often cited […]
The pilgrim’s journey has been central to Christian tradition from the beginning. It’s a helpful image for the still unresolved discernment among Christians about the place of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in God’s heart and in the church. We inherited the spiritual practice from the Jews: remember Jesus’ repeated treks to Jerusalem […]
What a moment! Let us rejoice that the Supreme Court has astounded many and affirmed equal protection under the law. With this week’s decision, federal benefits will be granted to legally married same-sex couples. Not only that, but same-sex marriage was also upheld in our most populous state, California. For this, we rejoice with a resounding “hazzah!”
I was talking with my friend, John, recently about the wonderfully vigorous national conversation about marriage sparked last month by the Supreme Court hearings on Prop 8 and DOMA. John agreed with a politician who publicly expressed a fear that straight people might pretend to be gay so that they could get the special benefits of having a “gay marriage.” I shared with him how this made no sense to me.
In October, the Nominating Committee of Pittsburgh Presbytery placed my name in nomination for teaching elder commissioner to the 220th General Assembly of the PCUSA that will convene here in Pittsburgh at the end of June 2012.
On what grounds do I stay to love and serve God in Christ in the PCUSA? I rest upon Paul’s appeal for unity in his letter to the Ephesians as a crucial pillar supporting my commitment to the Presbyterian Church.