The average age at which Americans first marry is at a historic high – 27 for women and 29 for men. Should Christians welcome or beat back this trend? The Christian Post asked three Christian leaders to weigh in on this topic.
Bishop Harry Jackson believes Christians should be encouraged to marry young. He will begin preaching on the topic this month and is planning to include the topic in some marriage seminars and youth ministry teaching. As a black pastor, he is particularly concerned about the devastation wrought by single parenthood in black communities.
"With three-fourths of kids in the black community being born out of wedlock and 40 percent of young black women not planning to ever get married, I think what we're doing right now is definitely not working. I want to abandon ship on that other way as quick as I can," said Jackson, senior pastor at Hope Christian Church, Beltsville, Md., and chairman of the High Impact Leadership Coalition and a senior editorial advisor for The Christian Post. more >>
Uruguay is set to become the second South American country to legalize same-sex marriage, after the Lower House overwhelmingly approved the change in the nation's definition of marriage.
"This is a very special day, a historic day for Uruguay. The country is settling its debts with a large number of citizens who for the simple fact of loving someone of the same sex have suffered bullying and harassment," said Federico Graña, a member of local activist group Ovejas Negras, or Black Sheep, to local news portal Espectador. The Roman Catholic Church, however, has opposed this change and insisted that traditional marriage should be preserved.
The Lower House vote on Wednesday night ended with 71 lawmakers out of 92 approving gay marriage, while the Senate had already approved it by 23 votes to 8 earlier this month. President José Mujica is expected to sign the bill into law in the coming weeks, the Wall Street Journal explained. more >>
I must admit I became angry when I read Edward Hudgins' op-ed in The Christian Post, entitled, "GOP Should Invite Social Conservative 'Extremists' to Leave." People like Mr. Hudgins already agree with Democrats on social issues, so I propose that they take their fiscally conservative views and register as Democrats. After all, many fiscal conservatives believe that the fiscal issues are more important than the social issues. So why are they demonizing people like me on issues that are of (supposed) lesser importance?
Besides, unlike what Mr. Hudgins and others like him assert, social liberals are the true extremists. Here's why.
Social liberals probably think that by supporting gay marriage, they are supporting a policy that is based on limited government and freedom. Almost none of these can explain the exact legal changes that must be made to accommodate gays into marriage. It is these legal changes that are so highly problematic, and are so extreme. more >>
Members of the Republican National Committee will gather in Los Angeles on Friday for their spring meeting and vote on a resolution to continue their opposition to same-sex marriage.
The resolution is expected to pass by an overwhelming majority, according to Politico. Although the conservative party has seen some dissidents, predominant GOP leaders still believe that marriage should be defined as being between one man and one woman.
The State of Washington is suing a small flower shop after the owner declined to provide flowers for a homosexual wedding – based on her religious beliefs.
Barronelle Stutzman, the owner of Arlene's Flowers in Richland, Wash., is facing thousands of dollars in fines and penalties for allegedly violating the state's Consumer Protection Act.
"If a business provides a product or service to opposite-sex couples for their weddings, then it must provide same-sex couples the same product or service," Attorney General Bob Ferguson said in a statement. more >>
In it's deliberations to consider of the legality of same sex marriage, the Supreme Court recently heard arguments from various parties on both sides of this divisive issue. One such supporting argument deserves particular attention for those of us concerned with the health and well being of children. In their recent brief to the Supreme Court, the American Sociological Association states, "Whether a child is raised by same-sex or opposite-sex parents has no bearing on a child's wellbeing". This conclusion is based on various studies that measured such outcomes as "academic performance, cognitive development, social development, psychological health, early sexual activity, and substance abuse" (see Hollingsworth vs Perry, US vs Windsor, NOS. 12-144, 12-307).
However faulty such studies might be (as was addressed quite thoroughly by Napp Nazworth in his recent two part series), I wish to submit that by allowing proponents of same sex marriage to frame the main arguments of this matter, we are allowing ourselves to be distracted from the more genuine central issues that are at stake. It may turn out that same sex couples can raise children just as well as opposite sex couples to achieve success in terms of those various measures. The real problem with this argument is that it draws our attention away from considering the central role that biological fathers and mothers play in our development towards healthy adulthood. And I am afraid this effort is being made not so much out of a willful attempt at distraction as from a gross misunderstanding of the central tenants of human development.
To gain a clear understanding of the important roles our biological fathers and mothers play in our development, we will need to clear the board of our preconceived ideas, and begin again by placing several essential pieces in place and discover how they fit together. The first piece is the most obvious yet essential foundation to our new understanding. We spend nearly one quarter of our lives in the presence of adult caregivers as we mature into adulthood. The second piece will shift us away from a strictly psychological perspective which emphasizes our cognitive and behavioral experience (e.g., the focus in early childhood on our first words and our first steps), and instead correctly places emotional/relational experience at the forefront as the variable which has the greatest impact on our development (see "The Irreducible Needs of Children", by Brazelton & Greenspan, 2000, DeCapo Press). more >>