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Baptist Peace Fellowship Staff Respond to the Passing of Amendment One

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May 16, 2012 | bpfna

Response to Amendment One     
by Evelyn Hanneman
Operations Coordinator

Once again, we have given Jesus reason to weep over Jerusalem, crying out, “Would that you knew the things that make for peace!”

 

The vote in favor of the so-called “Marriage amendment” in North Carolina gives us all reason to weep. The very basics of Jesus’ message of love have been ignored. His message in refusing to follow Jewish law regarding stoning of women and picking wheat and healing on the Sabbath has not been heard.

 

Now we must renew our determination to work for these basic rights for GLBT persons. We cannot wait for the sea change that the “experts” say will happen in a generation.

 

One bright spot – this vote does not prohibit our churches from performing marriages for gay couples. While the “civil union” cannot be registered in city hall, the marriages can be confirmed and celebrated by their faith communities.


What a Vote Cannot Change

By LeDayne McLeese Polaski
Program Coordinator

 

I came into work yesterday feeling embarrassed and disheartened by my state’s vote to pass a constitutional amendment naming “marriage between one man and one woman” as “the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized by this state.”  I was discouraged about the real harm this amendment will do; sad about the hateful rhetoric I’ve heard; struggling to find the words to express my disappointment.

 

So, I did the only logical thing.

 

I spent the morning on Facebook.

 

Here’s what I saw --

Pam and Stephanie are still crazy in love with their baby son Micah. Ron and Burton still adore their daughter Rosalee.  Bonnie and Audrey still look smashing in their wedding pictures and still post too-cute pictures of their daughter Evers.

 

My LGBT friends are hurting, of course, as am I.  The amendment does real and lasting damage.  The words thrown around in the debate were destructive. The consequences are immense.

 

But my friends are also doing the things they always do – Loving their partners; Taking their children to school; Going to work; Doing the laundry; Serving the Church; Creating art; Writing sermons; Attending graduations; Visiting friends in the hospital; Caring for their elderly parents; Celebrating their grandchildren; Supporting their friends; Reaching out to others; Loving God; Finishing their PhD’s; Healing abandoned children; Working to end sexual trafficking; Teaching; Providing pastoral counseling; Leading churches; Providing loving care for ill and aging partners; Having birthdays; Praying; Writing; Running marathons and 5K’s; Making music; Being friends; Living life.

 

No vote can change any of that. No vote can change the fact that people fall in love, live in relationship, enjoy their children, take care of their families, live out their callings, and serve the world. No vote can change the fact that we’re all beloved children of God.  No vote can change that I have been immensely, powerfully, deeply blessed by all I’ve learned from my LGBT friends – no vote can change that they are an endless witness to me of commitment to one another, faithfulness to the Church, fortitude in adversity, grace in hardship, and love for God.

 

Someday another vote will overturn this one. But no vote will ever overturn love. And love continues –  yesterday, today and all days.



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