South Carolina, the only state under the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals where the same-sex marriage ban is still enforced, is now facing another lawsuit by those who refuse to have their same-sex spouses' family names written on their driver's license.
The American Civil Liberties Union and S.C. Equality filed the lawsuit in federal court Friday on behalf of people who were married in other states and could not get their surnames changed by the Department of Motor Vehicles, according to The Associated Press.
While a woman in Lexington County filed a similar lawsuit challenging the state's gay marriage ban last month, other lawsuits are pending in federal court. more >>
Did you know that September is ex-gay awareness month? Honestly, I did not realize such a commemoration took place either until last year. I received an invitation to attend the first annual Ex-Gay Awareness Month Conference hosted by Voice of the Voiceless, Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays, and Equality And Justice For All. This introduction coupled with stories shared by some of the most courageous men and women I've yet to encounter illumined me to the love and support the ex-gay community deserves as they face tremendous hostility from gay activists.
But it's not just gay activists who belittle the ministry of ex-gay awareness advocates, therapists and support group leaders. By now you've likely heard RNS News report that Dr. Russell Moore has supposedly "denounced reparative therapy" for same-sex attracted individuals who wish to change their sexual attractions and join the ex-gay community. But if you read all of Moore's statements, you cannot find him downright rejecting sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE). Instead, he's putting therapy in its place on the hierarchy of healing, as I explained over at The Christian Post while rejecting that notion that the solution is ultimately change.
Unfortunately, the voices not heard in this sudden revival of debate are those within the ex-gay community, many of whom have used therapy for wise counsel, accountability and healing. more >>
The powerful and once private CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, went public and political with his homosexuality Thursday calling it a "gift from God" while throwing his support behind gay marriage. In a deftly political reply, however, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said his homosexuality is his "personal decision".
Mainstream media and gay advocates celebrated Thursday when Cook revealed in a Bloomberg Businessweek op-ed that God made him gay and he would advocate for gay marriage and the general advancement of gays and other causes until "my toes point up."
"While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven't publicly acknowledged it either, until now. So let me be clear: I'm proud to be gay, and I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me," wrote Cook Thursday, making him the first openly gay chief executive of a fortune 500 company. more >>
In addressing some of the most challenging questions about homosexuality and marriage, British minister Sam Allberry emphasized that biblical marriage between one man and one woman is a core issue in Christianity, and urged Southern Baptist pastors, teachers and leaders gathered that the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission's 2014 National Conference to boldly preach about it.
"We believe what we believe about homosexuality because we believe what we believe about marriage" said Allberry.
He explained: "One of the purposes of marriage in the Bible is that this union between a man and a woman shows the mystery of Christ and the church. Human marriage is the icon of the relationship Jesus has with His people. But if we now construe marriage as being between a man and a man or a woman and a woman, that picture is disfigured. We're left instead with Christ and Christ or the church and the church. In other words, when you begin to change the biblical definition of marriage, you end up changing something that should be reflecting the Gospel." more >>
Conservative groups believe there's still much to be done in Houston after Mayor Annise Parker dropped her controversial subpoenas against five pastors who had spoken against homosexuality and the city's Equal Rights Ordinance.
"Mayor Parker claims she withdrew the subpoenas not because she was wrong to issue them in the first place, but because they were not 'serving Houston,'" said the conservative American Family Association, which noted that while Parker's decision was a success, the matter "was far from over."
"In reality, what they were not serving is the foundation of our nation: religious liberty and the right of conscience." more >>
Singapore has upheld its 76-year-old ban on sexual relations between men, explaining that the law has final say on such matters. The ruling has prompted a number of LGBT activist groups to call the decision discriminatory.
"Whilst we understand the deeply held personal feelings of the appellants, there's nothing that this court can do to assist them," the judges wrote in their ruling, according to Bloomberg News. "Their remedy lies, if at all, in the legislative sphere."
The ruling went against three men trying to overturn the law, known as Section 377A, which prohibits sexual relations between men. more >>