Share This Page

Area churches take stands on gay marriage issue

| Sunday, May 13, 2012, 11:46 p.m.
Area churches take stands on gay marriage issue, and pastor says black voters won't forsake Obama over his statements from last week. Associated Press

Most black voters will continue to support President Obama, even if they disagree with his endorsement of gay marriage, the senior pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in the Hill District said on Sunday.

"Most of the black community recognizes that the statement was political rather than — shall I say — spiritual," said the Rev. Melvin T. Jackson. "He has a political position that he has to consider about everything he says and does, and he's the president of all the people."

Jackson did not bring up the subject during his sermon, focusing instead on a Mother's Day theme.

"I have no opinion other than what the Bible says, and that's because (God's) book is holy," Jackson said. "From his opinion, the word of God, marriage is between a man and a woman."

Obama's announcement last week made him the first president to speak out in favor of gay marriage. Mitt Romney, his presumed Republican opponent in November, took the opposite stance in a speech on Saturday at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va.

"Culture — what you believe, what you value, how you live — matters," Romney told 6,000 graduates and 30,000 others at the school founded by the late evangelist Jerry Falwell. "As fundamental as these principles are, they may become topics of democratic debate from time to time. So it is today with the enduring institution of marriage. Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman."

Many members of First Unitarian Church of Pittsburgh in Shadyside wore bright yellow "Standing on the Side of Love" T-shirts yesterday, part of a Unitarian campaign to promote diversity, including gay marriage. Sabbatical pastor Robin Landerman Zucker said in her sermon that the story of Adam and Eve has been used as "justification for a hate-filled, homophobic view of same-sex marriage."

After the service, Zucker said, "We believe absolutely in Obama's statement on same-sex marriage. We are jubilantly happy that he has made it official."

Gay marriage was not addressed during Mass at Greensburg's Blessed Sacrament Cathedral or First Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Jerry Zufelt, spokesman for the Roman Catholic Diocese in Greensburg, said the church's position against gay marriage has not changed.

"The Catholic Church sees marriage as a lifelong union between one man and one woman," Zufelt said. "Same-sex marriage is going against the teachings of the Catholic Church."

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.