Faith plays big role in gay marriage debate

6:56 PM, Oct 11, 2012   |    comments
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ST. PAUL, Minn. - For months, clergy members on both sides of the gay marriage amendment debate have weighed in across Minnesota.

It's not a coincidence, since recent surveys showing 85 percent of Minnesotans consider themselves part of some kind of organized religion.

But the challenge remains how do Minnesotans make a decision on a difficult ballot issue, while remaining true to their faith?

OPPOSING THE AMENDMENT

"Marriage is all about faith. It's about making a commitment to another human being," said Rev. Buff Grace of the Ascension Episcopal Church in Stillwater.

Grace was among dozens of religious leaders on Thursday calling on other clergy, hoping to get more support for the anti-amendment movement. For Grace, it comes down to the most basic biblical lessons.

"It's very clear. It's not a complicated issue about what love is," he said.

And leaders who oppose the amendment also say the other side fails to keep the bible within its social context.

"Those folks are misguided in how they interpret scripture. They're taking a very literal interpretation of scripture, which leaves the scriptures in a first century or earlier context," Grace said.

That has created a fundamental religious debate.

SUPPORTING THE AMENDMENT

"Really it's sad where there's confusion on the marriage amendment within the broader Christian church. Really the confusion's there simply because people are cutting and pasting what they like and don't like from the bible," said Pastor Jeff Evans with Christ Church Twin Cities in Minnetonka.

Evans says scripture provides a consistent, clear picture of what happens when people don't follow a traditional marriage model.

"We see throughout the scriptures whenever we deviate from that pattern that it is always a disaster," Evans said, adding, "It's just a very natural, plain reading of the text that marriage is between a man and a woman."

And the discussion continues. Bottom line, leaders from both sides recommend people step back, reflect, talk and pray before casting their votes on Nov. 6.

(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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