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Louisville Church Curbs Marriage Licenses Until Gays Can Marry

Louisville's Douglass Boulevard Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) voted unanimously on Sunday to stop signing marriage licenses until gay couples can marry as well:

Louisville "As an Open and Affirming Community of Faith (a designation signifying DBCC's commitment to full acceptance of all people, regardless of race, gender, age, or sexual orientation), our membership is committed to treating homosexuals and heterosexuals equally. Our congregation believes it is unfair to provide different services and benefits to heterosexual couples than we can provide to gay and lesbian couples," said associate minister Rev. Ryan Kemp-Pappan.

Watch WHAS11's report, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. That's wonderful. Great affirmation.

    Posted by: Harry McRae | Apr 20, 2011 11:50:28 AM

  2. Those damn Christians...

    Posted by: Rin | Apr 20, 2011 11:58:00 AM

  3. Fantastic...if more of our "ALLIES" just did these same type of actions, we'd could ratchet up the pressure for full equality! Question is: Are they willing to walk-the-walk, and possibly lose some business? Are they willing to stand up and "really" support us?

    Posted by: Frank | Apr 20, 2011 12:13:54 PM

  4. They "walk the talk" on Douglass Boulevard.

    Posted by: Scott | Apr 20, 2011 12:25:21 PM

  5. My UCC church here in Tampa did this, unanimously, in 2008.

    I wrote the policy and it's proudly linked on our website ( It's worth a read.

    We decided to end the practice for good, even if marriage equality is achieved in Florida, because we believe strongly in the separation between church and state and to have our minister act as an agent of the state in a civil matter violates that policy.

    Posted by: TampaZeke | Apr 20, 2011 12:40:35 PM

  6. My synagogue in Minneapolis took the same stand earlier this year:

    Posted by: Chris in MN | Apr 20, 2011 12:45:07 PM

  7. This is, of course, great, but hardly 'breaking news'. I've been refusing to sign marriage licenses for years. There's a whole movement -vocal-of Christian clergy who won't sign marriage licenses until they are available to everyone. Maybe not even then. Outside of the anti-religious corner of the gay ghetto, this kind of stuff is pretty obviously going on and we don't need anti-religious goad ing to do it. We do it because its what ' Jebus's would do.

    Posted by: Jonathon Edwards | Apr 20, 2011 12:51:04 PM

  8. I think it's great. Perhaps unfortunately, it's still not a strategy exactly for church growth or vitality; being anti-gay just brings in so much money for churches because gay-hating is so ubiquitious among most church-goers. And most gay people who grew up in a "Christian" church have rejected any sort of formalized Christianity for their own brand of more independent spirituality--or else gone off the deep end of disprespecting themselves immaturely with unprotected permiscuous sex--exactly what the Christianists HOPE gays will do if they don't directly kill themselves at a young age. So, these churches can kinda really only rest on the fact that they are doing the right thing. Very admirable, brave, and needed. May God bless them somehow.

    To grow gays truly into the modern churches of whatever stripe, churches need to teach kids that its ok if they are gay, and that if they do, they should treat themselves well--and that when they find love, the church will even be willing to marry them, "law" be darned.

    Posted by: just_a_guy | Apr 20, 2011 1:23:15 PM

  9. Those damn slack jawed yokels.

    Posted by: blister | Apr 20, 2011 1:48:42 PM

  10. It doesn't help clarify the argument that same-sex marriage is a government realm institution rather than some sort of edict that churches must marry same-sex couples, but the gesture, like the many who have done so before them, is always welcome. It's great to give attention to religious organizations that really are progressive and civil minded. Well done!

    Posted by: luminum | Apr 20, 2011 1:53:36 PM

  11. Now that's interesting. I was raised in a Disciples of Christ church and never thought I'd see one of their churches take this affirmative stand. It's too bad more stances like this by churches of all faiths and denominations can't make their positions known to more of the general populace. It might surprise folks to see how many reasonable churches and synagogues there are relative to same-sex marriage.

    Posted by: Rob | Apr 20, 2011 2:03:21 PM

  12. @Jonathan Edwards: Unfortunately, you are right. Gay-hating is still a "growth industry" and a cash-cow for evangelical and other right-wing conservative christian groups. I commend this church, however, for taking this principled stance. It's Exactly What Jesus Would Do.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Apr 20, 2011 2:53:53 PM

  13. Our "Open and Affirming" designation brings more straight people to our church than gay people.

    Posted by: TampaZeke | Apr 20, 2011 3:47:58 PM

  14. I got chills reading this because as a child, my church youth group in Indianapolis would visit this church and stay overnight during "mission trips" to volunteer at retirement homes, nursing homes, etc... This is amazing news and I remember this church fondly.

    Posted by: Seriously | Apr 20, 2011 3:48:59 PM

  15. This has been the policy of All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, CA who will perform religious blessings ONLY of same and opposite sex couples since the passage of Proposition H8. They refuse to act as legal agents for the State, until Prop. 8 is overturned. BTW this is the same Church which was sued by the IRS during the Bush Administration. The entire Church Congregation voted to fight the lawsuit and the Church won!

    Posted by: SCVMalcolm | Apr 21, 2011 3:58:33 AM

  16. When I attended a UCC church back in the 90's, all the members went through an "Open and Affirming" debate, and then voted to approve the measure. One couple left the church, but many others (straight and gay) joined because of it.

    Posted by: John | Apr 21, 2011 9:35:30 AM

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