NEW YORK - Hispanic ministers representing over 150 churches in New York rallied Thursday against the state's gay marriage bill, which is one vote short of being legalized in the New York Senate.
Supporters of New York Hispanic Clergy Organization gathered outside the office of Bronx Sen. Ruben Diaz to protest the gay marriage legislation and affirm their strong support for Diaz, the only Democrat state senator who will vote no on the bill. The Rev. Diaz, who is a Pentecostal minister, is the president of the Christian Hispanic group.
Diaz "has received many threats to his life and also negative comments towards his views. We say to those who have opposed, that we are united by our creed, belief, and he is not alone," said the Rev. Dr. Andy Torres, a vice president of NY Hispanic Clergy Organization. more >>
In a rare and far-reaching legal decision, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California has declared the 1996 Defense of Marriage act unconstitutional.
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Thomas Donovan issued the decision Monday while handling a joint bankruptcy case filed by Gene Balas and Carolos Morales, a same-sex couple in California. The judge’s ruling is the first to address the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, also known as DOMA, since U.S. Atty. Gen. Eric Holder announced in February the Obama administration would no longer defend the law in court, saying it was “discriminatory.”
Balas and Morales, two legally married men, asked the court to dismiss the Chapter 13 petition, citing DOMA and the fact that it restricts federal benefits like joint bankruptcy filings to marriages between a man and a woman. The judge ruled the law violated the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee. more >>
A federal judge ruled Tuesday to uphold Judge Vaughn Walker's decision to strike down California's same-sex marriage ban.
Proponents of Proposition 8 – which defines marriage as between a man and a woman – had asked that Walker's 2010 ruling be vacated, given that he has been in a same-sex relationship and thus had something to gain from the case. But Chief U.S. District Judge James Ware rejected that bid.
"The sole fact that a federal judge shares the same circumstances or personal characteristics with other members of the general public, and that the judge could be affected by the outcome of a proceeding in the same way that other members of the general public would be affected, is not a basis for either recusal or disqualification," Ware concluded. more >>
Episcopal clergy in the diocese of San Joaquin, California have been given authorization to bless same-sex unions, an announcement released on Thursday has said.
The announcement was made by U.S. Episcopal Bishop Chester Talton, who explained in the statement that clergy may “perform blessings of same gender civil marriages, domestic partnerships, and relationships which are lifelong committed relationships characterized by 'fidelity, monogamy, mutual affection and respect, careful, honest communication, and the holy love which enables those in such relationships to see in each other the image of God.”
The announcement means that commencing from Sunday the diocese will recognize gay and lesbian relationships as “sacred unions”. more >>
Conservatives say a recent survey revealing the younger generations' differing values is the result of media influences and negative experiences. Those values may change, they say, as young adults learn, age and form families of their own.
A national survey, released Thursday, verified that most adults, including half of all Millennials, believe that abortion is morally wrong. The survey, however, found that Millennials do not equate pro-life values to that of traditional marriage.
Rather, the Public Religion Research Institute survey reported that young adults ages 19-29 are more likely to favor same-sex marriage at higher rates than they are to support abortion as moral. more >>
“When my daughter came home from school one day saying that a classmate had two mommies, my response was, ‘Two mommies? How lucky is she?!’ What does it actually say in the bible that will cause some people to be upset by my line of thinking?”
That’s the question actress Gwyneth Paltrow, who practices Kabbalah, asked in her latest GOOP newsletter (an online publication that aims to “nourish the inner aspect”).
Her question was originally motivated by the story that broke last year about an Arkansas school board member, Clint McCance, who posted remarks urging gay youth to commit suicide in response to Spirit Day – a campaign to encourage support for gay youth. McCance later said he was sorry for his “ignorant comments” and he resigned from the school board. more >>