Monday, September 21, 2009

PCUSA Releases First Preliminary Report Of The Civil Union and Christian Marriage Task Force.

Here is a snippet from the first draft:
Draft of Preliminary Report
of the
Special Committee to Study Issues of Civil Union
and Christian Marriage
to the
219th General Assembly (2010)
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
September 2009


As many of you as were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus (Gal. 3:27-28).

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), like most mainline denominations, is wrestling with the issue of same-gender marriage. Responding to this struggle, the 218th General Assembly (2008) of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) directed the Moderator “to appoint a special committee,representing the broad diversity and theological balance of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), to study the following, including any policy recommendations growing out of the study:

• the history of the laws governing marriage and civil union, including current policy debates;
• how the theology and practice of marriage have developed in the Reformed and broader Christian tradition;
• the relationship between civil union and Christian marriage;
• the effects of current laws on same-gender partners and their children; and
• the place of covenanted same-gender partnerships in the Christian community.”

As members of Christ’s church, we differ profoundly; but can we also see that those who disagree with us are seeking to love one another with God’s grace, advance the radical inclusiveness of the gospel, and promote biblical faithfulness? Though we reach very different conclusions, can we rejoice that our church is willing to wrestle together prayerfully with the question: How do we extend the grace of God to all, calling all persons—regardless of sexual orientation—to repentance and conversion, so that all will experience God’s gracious intention for humanity?
In many ways, life in the body of Christ is not unlike a marriage: In the course of our life together, there are good days and bad days, good times and challenging times. There is great joy and wrenching pain. We talk, we laugh, we cry. We agree and we disagree, and occasionally we get angry and are tempted to walk away. But like any Christian marriage, in the body of Christ we know that the One who holds us together is more important than the arguments that threaten to tear us apart. That One is Jesus Christ, who said, “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this, everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:34-35).

Read the rest: Here.

No comments: