Some things just take time, I guess, because after some thirty years of talk — Can you imagine talking about one subject for thirty years? — about The Gays and marriage, members of the Presbyterian Church have finally decided to change their constitutional definition of marriage to include same-sex marriage.
Thirty years! I could say, “Better late than never, but thirty years!”
The church’s General Assembly recommended the change last year, and just this week the 171 regional presbyteries have agreed to follow suit; the new wording goes from marriage being between “a man and a woman” to being between “two people, traditionally a man and a woman.”
I kinda wish they could have left that last part out because in another thirty years marriage might also be a tradition of two same-sex people.
Still, it’s not all roses for the Presbyterian Church; it has been losing members as it shifts to the left and equality, though, to be fair, most religions are seeing their numbers diminish as they progress toward equality.
The first wave of departures came back in 2011 when the presbyteries began allowing gay men and women to be ordained as pastors, elders and deacons, but since most of those who left were of the more conservative ilk, it was only a matter of time for that thirty year discussion to finally come to an end and for the church to allow same-sex marriage.
My take? Meh. I mean, it’s not like we need the churches to allow same-sex marriage; marriage is not a religious institution, though it can follow a religious ceremony. Marriage is a civil institution and so churches, whether for marriage equality or against it, don’t really have much say in the legality of the matter.
Still for those same-sex couples who follow a particular faith, this is a welcome sign; and for those folks who follow a particular faith that is still dragging its heels on the issues of LGBT equality, maybe now’s the time to shift from your current church to a more progressive one.