This spring, with other former moderators, Rev. Lamar signed a letter calling for unity in the face of the ratification of Amendment 10A. Now in retirement in upstate New York, I sought him out last week and asked him to share with me, specifically, how the church can best do that now. I treasure his wisdom and want to share it with you here.
The Advocate:I have served as an ordained pastor in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) for 34 years and advocated for the welcome and full inclusion of LGBT people for even longer. Yet it wasn’t until midlife that I realized I wasn’t just an advocate for LGBT people, I was one of them. Continue Reading
The whole point of the revised ordination requirements is this: Love. God’s love is not a new thing, of course. When asked what God’s greatest commandment for us was, Jesus replied: Love. Love is Jesus’ Truth about God that He lifted up, emphasized, and established through His words and actions in the world, including His death on the cross.
I love having a good conversation with someone who disagrees with me. Over the years, I’ve had hundreds of these types of conversations – mostly with colleagues in the church who disagree with me about the place of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender faithful.
Washington Post On Faith: Shunning is not a word we hear or use too often in everyday life. Shunning is, however, prevalent as a practice within the church to our great shame and loss. The most recent example came before us on Sunday, when the Catholic bishop of Brooklyn ordered his priests to shun politicians for their passage of gay marriage in New York state. Continue Reading
It is now certain that The Confession of Belhar has failed to receive the votes needed to enter our Book of Confessions, the first part of the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). It will not live among us as an authoritative statement of who we are, what we believe and what we resolve to do as a church.
Washington Post On Faith: What a marvelous thing that any day now, the New York legislature is likely to legalize marriage between two men or two women! Exactly six years ago Saturday, June 25, I had the great honor to preside at the wedding of two women, Nancy and Brenda. For me the only way to describe it is that I experienced Pentecost — the Holy Spirit palpably fell upon us that day. Continue Reading
One of the cornerstones upon which my faith in Christ rests is a maxim of my tradition: “Reformed, Always Must Be Reformed.” I have spoken before on what it means to me. Recently, in a comment on a blog post, the question of this phrase’s meaning was posed and it prompted me to delve deeper into its meaning.
I have never considered leaving the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). I know many have. I respect that choice though it makes me terribly sad. I understand the view that the unity Jesus is speaking of here is on a higher plane or in a spiritual dimension. I get that people can only stand so much.
Washington Post On Faith: It may be that God calls Michele Bachmann to run for president, but, in the end, not to serve. God’s will shall be known through the vote of the people, just as it is in my church. Continue Reading