Let The County Clerk Do It

I wonder . . . what will happen next with same-gender marriage?

Have you ever helped celebrate, participate or witness a same-gender marriage? Years ago (January 1999) I joined other clergy to publicly participated in a “holy union” for two women in Sacramento. First it was an act of love, of trusting in God’s blessing for the sacredness of a relationship. But, second, it was one small way to declare that the policy of the United Methodist Church (UMC) was unfair. The UMC continues to declare same-gender unions or marriages as “wrong.” (Note: In the last month my Bishop sent clergy a letter reminding us same-gender I dos are a UMC don’t.) Puh-lease! We are so behind the times!

As with many, this is my hope: let the state provide licenses for two people—different or same-gender—to legally marry. Let those two people receive and share in the benefits and responsibilities of the state and federal laws and regulations.

And if the two persons are people of faith and wish a religious ceremony . . . wonderful! But no church or clergy would be “required” to perform the ceremony. My hope/prayer would be, at least for the UMC, that individual clergy would be allowed to make their own God-guided, Jesus-inspired, tradition-honoring, tradition-transforming, open-hearted choice.

Me? I’d rather not be in the business of signing state-sanctioned documents. Let the County Clerk do that. But what a joy to help two people take the risk of sharing and declaring life together as faith-filled witnesses to God’s exuberant love!

What do you think?

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