Christians Against Proposition 8

Though I am opposed to Proposition 8, it bothers me to see antiMormon, antiCatholic and antiEvangelical signs among the protests that have occurred since the passage of the ballot measure.  Many Christians from each denomination have quietly opposed this measure against gay marriage.  Though the more conservative elements from each denomination have dominated the religious dialogue, there have been more progressive Christian voices who have fought for gay rights and gay marriage.  I worry that in their anger over the support of Proposition 8 by Mormon, Catholic and Evangelical churches, it may create a prejudice by gay rights supporters against all Christians.  The Christian community is more politically diverse than the Religious Right let on and many progressive Christians, among them Mormons, Catholics and Evangelicals, are struggling within their denominations to fight to change attitudes.

Barbara Young*, a prominent Mormon, is against Propostion 8 for its discrimination against gays and lesbians.  St. Aidan’s Episcopal Church in San Francisco had been marshalling opposition against Proposition 8, mainly through individuals working at phone banks.  St. Francis Lutheran Church in San Francisco, which chose lesbian priests to lead it two decades ago and gave up its membershilp in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, had fragmented efforts to make a liberal opposition.  In a Roman Catholic Church in Fresno, a priest went out of the closet and decried Proposition 8 in the pulpit in early October, causing controversy in his parish.  The Reverand Geoffrey Farrow said, “How is marriage protected by intimidating gay and lesbian people into loveless and lonely lives?  I am morally compelled to vote no on Proposition 8….   I know these words of truth will cost me dearly.  But to withhold them… I would become an accomplice to a moral evil that strips gay and lesbian people not only of their civil rights, but of their human dignity as well.”

Prominent Seventh Day Adventists like Julius Nam (Associate Professor of Religion Loma Linda University),  Lawrence T. Geraty (President Emeritus, La Sierra University), and Gary Chartier (Associate Professor of Law and Business Ethics, La Sierra University) have gone against their Seventh-day Adventist Church State Council’s public support of California Proposition 8.  The Episcopal Bishops of California issued a statement in opposition of Proposition 8 (http://www.diocal.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=303&Itemid=215).

In the October 31, 2008 edition of the San Jose Mercury News, the Council of Churches of Santa Clara County (http://www.councilofchurches-scc.org/marriage) had an advertisement against Proposition 8 and it was sponsored by the following churches:

Almaden Hills United Methodist Church, San Jose
Alum Rock United Methodist Church, San Jose
Campbell United Church of Christ Council
Campbell United Methodist Church
Celebration of Faith Church, San Jose
Center for Spiritual Living, San Jose
College Heights United Church of Christ, San Mateo
First Congregational Church of Palo Alto  (UCC), Peace and Justice Task Force
First Congregational Church of San Jose, United Church of Christ
First Presbyterian Church of Palo Alto
First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto
First Christian Church, San Jose
First Unitarian Church of San Jose
Grace Baptist Church, San Jose
Holy Redeemer Church, San Jose
Holy Redeemer Lutheran Church of San Jose
Metropolitan Community Church of San Jose
Morgan Hill United Methodist Church
New Community of Faith, San Jose (UCC and American Baptist)
St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Santa Clara
St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, San Jose
St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Sunnyvale
Stone Church of Willow Glen (Presbyterian), San Jose
Trinity Episcopal Church, San Jose
Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto Board
St. Jude’s Episcopal Church, Social Justice/Outread Committee, Cupertino

As Barbara Young and Reverand Geoffrey Farrow  are showing, there are Mormons, Catholics, Evangelicals, and other Christians who support gay marriage and are willing to stand up for it.  In the pews of Mormon, Catholic, and Evangelical churches are parishioners who are either gay or support gay rights yet are quiet about it out of fear of their more conservative churchgoers and clergy.   Supporters of gay marriage need to read out to these people within these churches and encourage them to stand up and talk.

*I made a correction.  My original post mentioned Steve Young being against Proposition 8.  I have been informed that it is his wife and not him who is against Proposition 8.  Steve Young made this statement:  “Barb and I love each other very much. It is that love of each other and the Savior that helps us come to the decisions we do. For Barb, who has a remarkable and enviable compassion for others, those political activities are far more public than mine. Those who know me, know I chose long ago not to be publicly active in the political process. I do have strong opinions. I do vote and will vote on Tuesday, but those matters are private.”

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About angelolopez

I’ve wanted to be an artist all my life. Since I was a child I’ve drawn on any scrap of paper I could get a hold of. When I went to San Jose State University, I became more exposed to the works of the great fine artists and illustrators. My college paintings were heavily influenced by the humorous illustrations of Peter De Seve, an illustrator for the New Yorker magazine. I also fell under the spell of the great muralists of the 1930s, especially Thomas Hart Benton and Diego Rivera. I graduated with a degree in Illustration. Since my time in college, my goal has been to be a successful children’s book illustrator. I’ve illustrated 3 books: Two Moms the Zark and Me by Johnny Valentine in 1993; Night Travelers by Sue Hill in 1994; and Cherubic Children’s New Classic Story Book Volume 2 for Cherubic Press in 1998. I’ve painted murals for Lester Shields Elementary School in San Jose, the Berryessa branch of the San Jose Public Library, and Grace Community Church in Los Altos. I’ve had a few illustrations published in South Bay Accent Magazine and I will have an illustration published in the January/February issue of Tikkun magazine.
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6 Responses to Christians Against Proposition 8

  1. angelolopez says:

    Thank you for the site post. I wrote this post because of my concern of the way people view Christians. If the only Christian voices that people hear are conservative Christian voices, then they’ll assume that those are the only Christian voices there are. I’m trying to show to gay marriage advocates that there are alternative Christian voices (among them Mormon, Catholic, and Evangelical voices) who support them.

  2. Peter ff says:

    Whilst I support your stance against religious persecution (which is what prop 8 actually is: persecution of people on religious grounds) the fact that you permit right wing radicals to usurp your agenda is essentially a cop out allowing your principles to be compromised. So what value does your faith have if you don’t protect it.

    If you don’t stand up then you acquiesce. If you allow the so called conservatives to dominate, you actively support your religion’s values being besmirched and rendered irrelevant.

    Thank God I’m an atheist, I’d be really ashamed to be considered a Christian.

  3. angelolopez says:

    Thank you Peter for your comments. Although I’m not sure you actually understand my post. I agree with you when you write: “If you don’t stand up then you acquiesce. If you allow the so called conservatives to dominate, you actively support your religion’s values being besmirched and rendered irrelevant.” Through these posts I’m trying to get more liberal Christians to stand up to their more conservative Christians. This post and another post on Mormons, Catholics and Evangelicals against Proposition 8 lists Christians who have courageously spoken out for gay rights (https://angelolopez.wordpress.com/2008/11/27/mormons-catholics-and-evangelicals-against-proposition-8/). I was ashamed that Proposition 8 passed. But I feel that since a lot of homophobia is a direct result of religion and the Christian church, the only way to change that is to encourage more liberal Christians to stand up and speak out against their more conservative counterparts.

  4. C. Burns says:

    I am not here to state who is going to hell or who is righteous or not. I am here to ask this question: why are homosexuals so bent on calling what they want “marriage”? First, from its origin, marriage does not reflect the model that the homosexual community is presenting—-the same gender being joined as life partners. Second, the concept of “marriage” is a biblical endeavor whose standard is set with the first man and woman.

    Marriage is meant to reflect the relationship between GOD and his creation; displaying the love, provision and interaction that He communicates along with man’s role as expected to show gratitude as well as reciprocating love and interaction is only part of what’s to be mirrored. Also, in a marriage, commonly, it is rightfully assumed that a couple will reproduce or “procreate” which furthers this reflection of the marriage mirroring GOD’s dealings with man whereas GOD “creates”. Even in a case where a man and a woman are joined and cannot (whether the problem lies in the man or the woman physically) procreate it at least has the appearance of the possibility of procreation.

    The pretentious petition for “same sex marriage” is an attempt to make a mockery of faith and of its essence is to Edge God Out! Marriage holds for mankind a reminder that GOD is a Great Creator, in fact, the Creator of all things. Every time a child is born it is a reminder of the awesomeness of creation. Life is first in the man delivered to the woman for her to carry for a hopeful 9 months. This is why we call GOD a “He”, not because He has gender in His Spirit form but because He “is the first cause of a thing”. A homosexual couple cannot represent this possibility which is why it would be redefining “marriage” to ultimately become something that is not Marriage at all.

    It is evident to me that the attempt of the homosexual community is indeed pretentious. I firmly believe that those for “same sex marriage” have set out to “DESTIGMATIZE” homosexuality and are on a quest to normalize its lifestyle. In doing this they are doing to others what they don’t appreciate having done to them; they are disregarding the faith, convictions and a wholesome societal paradigm for a selfish behavioral cause AS homosexuality is a BEHAVIOR and not an ETHNICITY. Though I am not for same sex unions at all, I ask, why not call it something else if these attempts to legalize such unions have no ulterior motives?

    We must continue to argue from a faith perspective but we need to become more wise than “blunt”. Simply saying “Adam & Eve and not Adam & Steve” doesn’t cut it anymore.

    We must take the position to meanings and definitions.

    Marriage by definition means to take two separate and complimenting components and merging or blending them. Testosterone and testosterone don’t merge neither do they compliment one another. A lamp isn’t complimented by a lamp but by a bulb. A plug isn’t complimented by a plug but by a socket outlet. To compliment something is to bring something to the table that the first component does not possess of its own; this is illustrated when you try to connect “north and north” or “south and south” poles of a magnet-it doesn’t work!

    If you were covered with necklaces and you added another necklace there would be no complimenting effect. But if you have on a plain black turtleneck sweater and you add something ornamental (something different) then you have complimented the sweater, right?

    What the homosexual community is purposing is to change the very “generic” definition of marriage whether from a biblical or none biblical perspective. So then, it cannot [from a terminological standpoint] be consider marriage at all by reason of the noncomplimenting components that are attempted to be joined.

    P.S. Let’s stop calling it “Gay” which means Happy and call it as it is “homosexuality”.

    Find Article at this link: http://www.nwitimes.com/lifestyles/article_823bcc05-4d11-5377-8331-bc4246448c8b.html

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