Newlyweds Jessa Duggar and Ben Seewald did not share their first kiss with the audience at their wedding but have released a new photo of themselves kissing, which has delighted fans.
The couple exchanged vows on Saturday, Nov. 1 but did not have their first kiss, choosing instead to save it for a more private moment before their reception. Instead, they introduced Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar up at the altar and had them kiss, stating, "Now you've seen a Duggar kiss."
Jessa and Ben followed the rules of traditional Duggar courtship, which includes the pledge not to engage in any physical intimacy. The two also decided not to hold hands until they were engaged and took it one step further to save the kiss for themselves instead of in front of their 1,000 guests. The picture posted to Jessa's Instagram account shows them engaged in a passionate kiss and has garnered over 107,000 "likes" on the website. more >>
Missouri became the latest state to have marriage redefined Wednesday when a state judge ruled that the state constitution's definition of marriage violated the U.S. Constitution and ordered state registrars to begin issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.
A day after a federal court officially struck down the gay marriage ban in neighboring Kansas, Missouri Judge Rex Burlison, of the St. Louis Circuit Court, issued a written ruling stating that the state's recognition of marriage as "only between a man and a woman" violates the equal protection and due process rights granted by the 14th Amendment of the the U.S. Constitution.
"The Court Finds and declares that any same-sex couple that satisfies all the requirements for marriage and under Missouri law, other than being of different sexes, is legally entitled to a marriage license," Burlison wrote. more >>
Kirk Cameron has spoken out about "19 Kids & Counting" star Jessa Duggar's recent wedding to Ben Seewald, stating that he wants his daughters to have the same type of relationship.
"I want them to see that and go, 'That's what I want for my marriage'" Cameron told People. "Nobody does this. And as a dad, it thrills your heart. I want a guy that honors and respects my daughters like Ben is respecting Jessa."
Cameron is a friend of the Duggar family and has two teenage daughters, who also attended the wedding. They were not certain they would be able to attend the ceremony, but Cameron's wife, Chelsea, convinced him to go and take their daughters. more >>
Before marrying Ben Seewald, Jessa Duggar received marital advice from sister Jill, who is still a newlywed herself.
"Jessa and I shared a lot with us being in relationships and us getting married, and now they are following along," Jill told People. "We have great examples in our parents that love doesn't have to end. Spend lots of time together and remember, the honeymoon doesn't have to end."
"And we're looking forward to seeing more cousins," Jill's husband Derick added. more >>
Pope Francis is set to open the "Complementarity of Man and Woman" conference at the Vatican on Nov.17-19, which is dedicated to traditional marriage and is set to feature speakers from various Christian churches, as well as from Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, Taoism and Sikhism. Russell D. Moore, the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, said that he accepted the invitation in order to bear witness to what evangelicals believe about marriage.
While noting that the different religious traditions who will be speaking have "real and ongoing differences on soteriology and ecclesiology," Moore noted on his website that he is "willing to go anywhere, when asked, to bear witness to what we as evangelical Protestants believe about marriage and the gospel, especially in times in which marriage is culturally imperiled."
Catholic News Service reported that the event will feature more than 30 speakers representing 23 countries, and will aim to "examine and propose anew the beauty of the relationship between the man and the woman, in order to support and reinvigorate marriage and family life for the flourishing of human society." more >>
As more Catholic and Jesuit universities in the United States begin offering benefits to the same-sex spouses of their employees, Catholic church leaders are starting to speak out in objection to their local universities starting to provide those benefits to gay and lesbian spouses.
Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska became the latest Jesuit institution to offer the benefits to the same-sex spouses of their employees, as the school announced the change in its policy last week.
Although the state of Nebraska currently has a ban against gay marriage, the president of Creighton University, the Rev. Timothy Lannon, said the decision was made so that those employees who were wed to a member of the same-sex in another state could receive the same treatment all of the other married employees are receiving. more >>