It would have certainly been refreshing and victorious to hear the Presbyterian Church marry couples as "two people" rather than specifically a man and a woman, but I guess we'll have to wait for that to happen. Yesterday, the Church decided to not change their definition of marriage.
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports:
Cindy Bolbach, the general assembly's moderator, said the proposal's failure indicated that delegates just weren't ready to make a decision on the marriage definition question, and "want to continue to talk about it."
The gay ordination proposal, which did pass, still must be approved by the majority of the church's 173 local "presbyteries," or district governing bodies, within the next year before it can take effect.
Had the marriage measure passed, it, too would have had to be approved by the presbyteries.
Only a few mainstream Christian denominations now conduct same-sex marriages, but many, like the Presbyterians, are debating the issue as uncertainty grows over churches' role in such marriages, now the law of the land in five states and Washington, D.C.
Legalized gay marriage "puts pastors in a bind," Bolbach said. "Let's say you have gay or lesbian members of your congregation who want to get married. The law allows it. What are they supposed to do?" The Presbyterians' discussion was "a reflection of what's going on in the secular world," she said.
But some encouraging news did come out of yesterday's vote by the Church. They elected to allow non-celibate gays in committed relationships to serve as clergy.