Some Clergy Refuse To Sign Straight Couples’ Marriage Certificates
If gays can’t marry, no one will. That’s the point of view of some clergy in the Refuse To Sign movement, who believe that gay marriage should be legal everywhere, but individual churches should be allowed to choose whether or not to perform the unions.
While some clergy won’t perform any weddings or sign marriage certificates to straight couples, other clergy members will still announce, “I now pronounce you husband and wife” but will request the straight couples have a judge sign their marriage certificates instead. Regardless of how they enact their protest, the clergy members agree they cannot “in good conscience function as an agent of the government,” according to their web site, by not signing marriage certificates for gays and thus denying gay couples the legal right to marry. In God’s eyes and theirs, they believe, the couples’ love should be legally sanctioned. But because clergy are authorized to sign marriage certificates, church and state are being melded together in a way that they believe is inappropriate. [Salon.com]
This is such an interesting idea! The way the gay marriage debate plays out in popular culture usually focuses on the halls of state governments or the courts. How cool that progressive clergy are stepping in to say that not only is gay marriage not a sin, but the government shouldn’t be making those decisions for people, anyway.