Church approves gay marriage

Yesterday the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) approved an amendment to its Constitution that re-defines marriage as a covenant between two people.

As a Presbyterian pastor since 1967, this debate has been a matter of long-suffering disappointment, prayer, and hope. At long last, the church opened its heart to all of its members. Questions of how to move forward in ways that do not disparage the conscience of dissenters and how to prevent further withdrawal of dissenting PC(USA) congregations provide no ready answers. Perhaps the fifth of the PC(USA)’s Historic Principles of Church Order (approved at the founding General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in 1789) may yet guide the church today and in days to come.

…[W]e… believe that there are truths and forms with respect to which people of good characters and principles may differ. And, in all these we think it the duty both of private Christians and societies to exercise mutual forbearance towards each other. [Book of Order, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Forbearance is an increasingly foreign attribute in the church, the nation, and the world.  One prays and hopes that forbearance would prevail as we work our way through the thistles and nettles of the spiritual, ethical, national, and geopolitical issues of conscience that trouble and divide us.

– Gordon C. Stewart, Chaska, MN, March 18, 2015

2 thoughts on “Church approves gay marriage

  1. Karin, this is so good. It’s so easy to be haughty, to consider one’s self more advanced spiritually or morally, or both. And when we do, we violate the commandment. How to do this is not simple and there is a log in most every eye in the way we have approached this in the church. It’s the conundrum enumerated in the vow of the ordained “to preserve the peace, unity, and purity of the Church,” three traits that often seem to collide. Thanks of the thoughtful reflection. Culture changes very, very slowly. Forbearance is its own commandment. It recognizes that fact and calls upon all in the Church of Jesus Christ to bear with each other as we work through matters of conscience.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mutual forbearance are key words here… This is truly a landmark decision. We have too much church history that has relied on various denominations claiming they and they only have the truth and promising they have the only way to salvation. Just because we have not understood how other people are different from ourselves and do not even try to comprehend our individual differences and ways of seeing, our differing backgrounds, ethnicities, and all such, we have set up acrimonious battles. Where is the the Lord’s commandment, “Love one another as I have loved you”? We are all his sheep, but have been set to fighting among ourselves by the wolves in sheep’s clothing that strive to control us for their gain.
    . May we step back and pray for love and understanding of the other.


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