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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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UCC calls for equal marriage rights for gays and lesbians

At its meeting July 1-5, the United Church of Christ General Synod affirmed “equal marriage rights for couples regardless of gender.” It is the first such action by a U.S. mainline denomination.

John Thomas, president of the1.3-million member UCC, called the July 4 action a theological statement and a protest against discrimination. It came after 45 minutes of debate.

Under the UCC’s polity, the vote doesn’t require its pastors or congregations to offer same-sex marriage ceremonies, although some already do so.

The approved resolution asks UCC congregations to prayerfully consider such wedding policies and to support legislation granting equal marriage rights. It also recognizes that the UCC, an ELCA full communion partner, is not of one mind and that discussion of sexuality-related issues is difficult.

UCC congregations are independent and take General Synod actions as advisory only.


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