Once upon a time—actually, at least 2000 years of time—marriage in the West was defined in thickly-textured way. There were multiple dimensions to its definition—natural, social, consensual, and religious. The natural seemed obvious: two complementary beings—male and female—entered into a permanent one-flesh union that included sexual fidelity. They were complementary in physical and emotional ways and when nature took its course in sexual intercourse, they had children. Since the children were their “flesh and blood,” the parents had strong attachments to them and provided the optimal context for their upbringing.
Congressman Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) says “a climate of intolerance and intimidation for citizens who believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman” is being created.
But it doesn’t actually cost $25,000 to get married. “We can’t afford to get married,” often means, “We can’t afford the lavish wedding which is what we or others expect. We’ll do that someday when we have the money.”
The Sunday after Christmas I walked out of church furious—not part of my original plan. The theme was family as in the Holy Family—Joseph, Mary, and Jesus. In his welcome, the pastor told the congregation, “Love, not biology makes a family.” That made me sit up and take notice. His sermon elaborated. “What is a normal family any more?” he asked jovially repeating his mantra that “Love, not biology makes a family.”
A reputed expert on United Methodist polity recently made a very publicized plea to the Council of Bishops urging them to end enforcement of the Discipline’s prohibition on same sex unions, which has been reiterated by many General Conferences. United Seminary Dean David Watson offers a very thoughtful response to that expert with his defense […]
In response to the question, “How ought I to live as a married man or married woman?”, I have nothing to offer. However, I have, as though it were an act of divine providence, encountered four people in the past month who do have something to offer. On the blogs and on the street, the question of how to live a marriage is in the air.
In a dramatic defiance of UMC church law, retired Bishop Mel Talbert has become the first known United Methodist bishop to perform a homosexual union ceremony. This epic clash pits Talbert and other members of the denomination’s fading liberal old guard against younger generations of more orthodox UMC leadership.
In response to retired Bishop Mel Talbert’s increasingly brazen covenant-breaking misbehavior, the UMC Council of Bishops executive committee is finally showing some leadership, publicly calling on him to abandon his widely publicized plans to bless a same-sex union this weekend in open defiance of church law.