By the power vested in me: Colorado clergy coalition supports marriage equality

By

Posted Thu, May 1, 2014

Marriage for all-Highlands United Methodist Church is one of the organizations that is part of Faithful Voices for Strong Families. Photo by Angela Jackson.

Marriage for all-Highlands United Methodist Church is one of the organizations that is part of Faithful Voices for Strong Families. [Photo by Angela Jackson]

DENVER — For a few Colorado clergy members, there is one grain they are happy to go against.

Why Marriage Matters Colorado, an organization the supports marriage equality, announced on April 16 that a coalition of 215 clergy and faith leaders from Pueblo to Denver to Fort Collins support same-sex marriage.

Faithful Voices for Strong Families is composed of pastors, ministers, and rabbis from a variety of different religious denominations.

“As people of faith, we believe in practicing the Golden Rule, treating others as we would want to be treated,” said Jeremy Shaver, spokesperson for the Faithful Voices Coalition.

The new group rolled out on the eve of oral arguments in a lawsuit seeking the freedom to marry in Oklahoma, before the Denver-based 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.

At a rally downtown to show support for marriage equality, Mountain View United Church of Aurora minister Wayne Laws said, “Everyone should have the same rights.”

Homosexuality is not something generally condoned in traditional Christian faiths that follow a version of the Bible. It may seem like a contradiction for a clergy member to go against their main textbook. But, they have their reasons.

In God we trust-Rev. Laura Rossbert a United Methodist clergywoman, tells members of the GLBT community that she supports marriage equality. Photo by Angela Jackson

In God we trust-Rev. Laura Rossbert a United Methodist clergywoman, tells members of the GLBT community that she supports marriage equality. [Photo by Angela Jackson]

United Methodist clergywoman Rev. Laura Rossbert said, “It is my hope that covenant  relationships can not only be honored and celebrated in our churches and state communities but also recognized in our beautiful state.”

“My family and I will not stop advocating for justice and equality until equality is known for all and I know that God walks with us on that journey,” Rossbert continued.

“I have no doubt that offering pastoral ministry to a prepared couple is perfectly aligned with the love of God as demonstrated through the life and teachings of Jesus and the values of faithfulness and covenantal relationship found within our scriptures,” said Rev. Bradley Laurvick of Highlands United Methodist Church, Denver.

Laurvick added, “Denying the grace of the Church’s blessing to a prepared, loving, committed couple does not embody (the church’s) teachings or extend the ministry of Christ to the world.”

Rev. Bonnie Sarah Spencer of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Fort Collins shared her reason for supporting marriage equality.

“As a Christian and clergyperson in the Episcopal Church, I support marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples in Colorado. God’s love and embrace reach all people, and the LGBT folks are certainly included in that embrace,” Spencer said.

Church and state

These two entities do not always get along, but on the topic of marriage equality, Colorado is on the same page. Gov. John Hickenlooper said, “If all men and women truly have the inalienable right to pursue happiness, and if all people are created equal, then by extension of law, logic, and love, every adult couple should also have the freedom to join in marriage.”

At the city level, the City of Denver has a Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Commission. The goal of the organization is to advance social, economic and political equality for the GLBT community.

As of the April 2014, 61 percent of Coloradans support the freedom to marry according to a new poll by Quinnipiac University. That number is a record high and an increase of 8 percent since April 2012.

For a complete list of the Faithful Voices for Strong Families organizations and individuals, please go to www.whymarriagematters.org.

,
Angela Jackson

About Angela Jackson

Angela Jackson is a Denver-Area Freelance Writer

View all posts by Angela Jackson

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

*