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Chicago’s Loyola University Bans Gay Wedding Ceremonies As Marriage Equality Begins in Illinois

As Illinois’ marriage equality law begins to take effect this year, Loyola University in Chicago has adopted an official policy that bans same-sex couples from marrying on campus grounds. DNAinfo Chicago reports:

LoyolaThe policy, enacted in December, allows only Catholic-sanctioned weddings — between a man and a woman — at the school's iconic Madonna della Strada Chapel in Rogers Park [pictured right]. All other ceremonies would be forbidden campuswide, university officials said.

The move undermined the hope of students and alumni who wanted the university to allow same-sex marriage ceremonies on campus grounds after the state Legislature passed the same-sex marriage law last year.

The state's first same-sex couples were officially married Friday.

"I was extremely disappointed because that policy is not reflective of the Loyola that I know," said Michael Jarecki, 35, who's gay and graduated from Loyola in 2001. "To me, this seems like two steps backwards."

Windy City Times notes that Loyola's religious affiliation and mission affords the university exemptions granted under the equal-marriage law, which states that religious organizations are not required to provide their facilities for wedding ceremonies and receptions. 

However, the law's definition of "religious facilities" states that educational facilities are not exempt and with the school's standing as both a religious organization and an educational institution, there could be room for interpretation based on how the law is worded. A way around this would be for the school to argue that the wedding and reception venues offered by the university aren't necessarily used for educational purposes. 


Copenhagen To Host Gay And Straight Weddings During Eurovision This May

During last year's Eurovision Song Contest, Krista Siegfrieds of Finland performed "Marry Me," and placed a big 'ole kiss on one of her female back-up singers to boot (right). Looking to up the romantic ante, Eurovision's 2014 host city, Copenhagen, will offer three locations for all couples, same-sex included, to be married around the city. 

EurovisionkissEurovision reports:

“Since 2010, we have had a lot of success marrying same- and opposite-sex pairs in the open air at selected locations in Copenhagen. As a city, we put a lot of effort into making everyone welcome and the Eurovision Song Contest is an excellent opportunity to offer weddings," explains the director of Copenhagen’s Citizen Service, Thomas Jakobsen, who is responsible for marriage ceremonies in the City.

“In 1989, Copenhagen City Hall performed the world’s first ever civil partnership. Now, 25 years later, the City of Copenhagen will once again play host to diversity with wedding arrangements in the city," says Søren Lauersen, Chairperson of LGBT Denmark.

"I am sure that many couples, gay and straight from both home and abroad will accept this offer”, he went on to say.

The marriage ceremonies will take place May 7th, 9th, and 10th, and you can find more information about them at Copenhagen's tourism website.


Andy Cohen Performs Gay Wedding with Jonathan Groff and Tamar Braxton as Witnesses: VIDEO

Cohen

On the Watch What Happens Live aftershow, Andy Cohen officiated the wedding of Daniel Cunningham and Ricardo Santiago in the Bravo clubhouse. Looking's Jonathan Groff and Tamar Braxton served as witnesses.

Santiago and Cunningham recently celebrated their 9th anniversary and asked Cohen to marry them. Cohen got licensed to perform the wedding and did so last night.

Groff showed that he's a big softie and shed some tears. Perhaps you will too.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Eric Stonestreet Talks About Modern Family's Upcoming 'Gay Agenda'

Ericstonestreet[SPOILERS]

Eric Stonestreet, the Emmy-award winning actor who plays Cam on ABC's "Modern Family" (and appeared in a hilarious 2011 sketch, at right, with co-star Jesse Tyler Ferguson) recently revealed a few upcoming episode secrets, proving that what happens in Vegas does not stay in Vegas. Of course, Cam and Mitchell's wedding is coming up and a bachelor party is inevitable. In true comedic fashion, though, the couple finds themselves in the midst of someone else's celebration rather than their own.

Entertainment Weekly reports:

“We just shot an episode that was kind of an anti-bachelor party episode in Vegas,” says the man who plays Cam. “When we get there we run into Langham, Mitchell’s ex played by the great Fred Armisen, and he’s there having his bachelor party. And they say ‘Well, while you’re here, feel free to stop by,’ and he hands me a piece of paper with all the happenings, and I turn and I go, ‘Wow, an actual gay agenda.’ So I sneak off and go and participate in their bachelor party while Mitchell gets a sauna and gets a message.”

Sounds like things may get a little rowdy, but will we see some ever-elusive "Modern Family" gay PDA? 

Head over to EW and listen to Eric Stonestreet's podcast! And let us know your favorite Cam/Mitchell moments in the comments below.


Two Must-See LGBT Sundance Films: 'Love is Strange' and 'Appropriate Behavior'

  Lithgow
John Lithgow & Alfred Molina just got married in "Love is Strange"

BY NATHANIEL ROGERS 

I'm popping into this space from the snowy mountains of Park City, Utah, where I've been attending the 30th annual Sundance Film Festival. It kicked off the day of the Oscar nominations a week ago and in my golden-statue-mania I keep imagining it would have felt more festive had it coincided with Robert Redford's first Oscar nomination in 19 years for All is Lost. But it was not meant to be. Still Redford's legacy lives on in the most celebrated American film festival. Coincidentally, but happily given our purposes here at Towleroad, two of the best films at Sundance 2014 are LGBT films. Hopefully they'll both hit theaters or on demand or however we're watching movies next, and very soon.

APPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR is the perfect Iranian bisexual hipster coming-out comedy that you didn't know you needed or even wanted. But it's really good and really funny. The absurdly talented Desiree Akhavan (who some of you may know from the lesbian web series The Slope) wrote, directed and stars in the film as Shirin. She's a sharp-tongued bisexual twentysomething who is reeling from a breakup with Maxine (Rebecca Henderson) her activist vanilla girlfriend, and acting out sexually in Brooklyn.

MORE ON THESE TWO MUST-SEES AFTER THE JUMP...

Approp-threesome

Continue reading "Two Must-See LGBT Sundance Films: 'Love is Strange' and 'Appropriate Behavior'" »


Lesbian Wedding Announcement Blocked From Catholic School's Alumni Publication

Sarahrupertsullivan

Sarah Rupert-Sullivan (on the left in the picture above) got married to her wife, Molly, last August, but if she wants to share the news with old friends from high school, she may have to call them up one by one. Her alumna status at Notre Dame Prep does not include getting her wedding notice published in the school's "Class Chatter" report, and now Rupert-Sullivan would like to make a change. She has started a petition to revise an editorial policy that she believes is discriminatory against same-sex couples, but "Class Chatter" editor and school spokeswoman Cami Colarossi opposes the change.

The Baltimore Sun reports:

"We do not print in official school publications information which conflicts ... in any way with the totality of the Church's teachings," Colarossi said.

Rupert-Sullivan said Notre Dame Prep alumnae coordinator Shawn Osmeyer told her the school now plans to immediately inform alumnae when their submission will be omitted. But she also said the school's headmistress, Sister Patricia McCarron, politely told her in a conversation on Monday that Notre Dame Prep has no plans to change its publications policy...

"On one hand, we love and value every member of our community, like the gospel says," Colarossi said. "But on the other hand, we have to uphold Catholic doctrine as an official ministry of the Catholic Church. That is also what the pope says. He's not changing Catholic doctrine."

Rupert-Sullivan has indicated that there is a special double-standard applied to same-sex couples, however, and that other "Class Chatter" announcements have, in fact, defied "Catholic doctrine."

"The weddings that are listed are not Catholic-only," she said. "I got a message from a woman on Facebook that was married, divorced and did not have her first marriage annulled. So technically her second marriage is also a sin, and therefore her child was born illegitimately. NDP happily published both of those things."

Though the petition may not make any changes at Notre Dame Prep, Rupert-Sullivan does think that putting up a fight has its merits. 

"My other goal was to make sure no other student, whether it be current or past, feels like they are the only ones left out," she said. "At this point, I can only push on. I can't just quietly settle down."


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