Monday, October 10, 2011

Chaplain Group Wants You to Know They Refuse to Peform Gay Wedding Ceremonies... Even though They Never Had To

A coalition of Protestant chaplains, the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, have joined up with the Catholic Archdiocese for Military Services, to inform the Department of Defense that they will not be officiating at any wedding ceremonies for gay or lesbian service members. This article indicates that there are roughly 2,000 ministers in the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty and roughly 300 Catholic chaplains:
Col. Ron Crews (USA-Ret.), who served as a chaplain for 28 years, is executive director of the Alliance. He says his coalition is joining the Catholic Archdiocese for Military Services to say "no" to the directive. "They made a very strong statement saying that no Catholic chaplains serving in the military will participate in any same-sex ceremonies at any chapels. We appreciate that strong stand," he shares. "So we just wanted to let the Department of Defense know that it's not only the Catholic chaplains, but that some 2,000 chaplains who come from evangelical backgrounds are saying our chaplains will not participate in same-sex ceremonies in the military." Crews says the Alliance is once again calling on Congress to enact a right of conscience clause in the revised code to ensure that no American service members are forced to deny what the Bible says about homosexuality.
Last week, the DOD gave permission for its chaplains to officiate at the weddings of gay and lesbian couples (either on- or off-base) if those weddings occur in marriage equality states like Iowa or Massachusetts. The DOD clarified that such activities are voluntary and nobody will be required to officiate at any wedding, gay (or presumably straight). But the DOD policy offered chaplains who do honor gay families the option of officiating at the weddings of gay or lesbian service members.

I would think that the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty would appreciate the DOD for allowing gay-affirming chaplains the ability to exercise their own religious liberties.  But probably not...

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