I was the Mayor of Fargo for 16 years. This was while being a professor of economics and NDSU. Later I became active in the Red River Freethinkers. While I no longer live in Fargo-Moorhead the focus of my blog remains there.


A Church That Tolerates Both Views of Gay Marriage


It is possible for a congregation to hang together even if members disagree on gay marriage. The White Memorial Presbyterian Church in Raleigh, NC is thriving with about 4,000 members.
In 2015 the national Presbyterians voted to let every member church decide for itself whether to hold gay marriages or not. The majority of White Memorial voted to hold gay marriages but none have yet been held.
After the vote, pastors and members at large made a concerted effort to stress "love thy neighbor." They focused on this part of the faith instead of the so called "sanctity of marriage." In the article I read, pastors in the church mostly avoid bringing up the topic of gay marriage because they do not want to annoy conservative members. A goodly share of the people who voted against allowing gay marriage remained members.
The Barna polling groups says 44% of pastors polled are reluctant to discuss LGBT topics. They simply avoid this topic. White Memorial Pastor Christopher Edmonston says he would like to preach advocacy of gay marriage but mostly never does.
The Bible treats homosexuality as an unimportant topic. Jesus never mentioned it. It takes some mental gymnastics to take what the Bible says about "not lying together" to make the case it condemns same sex relationships. There certainly is no discussion in the Bible of long term faithful married life between same sex couples.
If one church can get along without much animosity over this topic, surely most any church could do so. And, if one church can do so why can't the entire county get over this issue and treat it as something most people want but all may not agree with.

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