Saturday, August 06, 2005

New GLBT activist trouble in our sister denom: Penn. Pastor Officiates Over Same-Sex 'Union' -- What Will PC(USA) Do?

By Jim Brown
August 5, 2005

(AgapePress) - A female minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) is in hot water over her role in a supposed "marriage" ceremony involving two lesbians. It's a test case that will likely determine whether ministers in that denomination will be disciplined for officiating at same-sex "wedding" ceremonies.

A judicial complaint was recently filed against Dr. Janet Edwards for officiating at the wedding of two women in Pennsylvania. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Edwards officiated in a ceremony integrating the couple's Buddhist and Christian traditions." The PC(USA)'s Book of Order officially allows "blessing ceremonies" for homosexual couples unless they are specifically identified as "marriages" or "unions."

Dr. Parker T. Williamson, editor-in-chief of the Presbyterian Layman magazine and CEO of the Presbyterian Lay Committee, says he is troubled by what he calls "in-your-face activity" by Janet Edwards.

"I am seeing more and more of this," Williamson says, "that those who have slipped off into the orbit of homosexuality, bisexuality, all of these aberrations, [demonstrate that] there's a connection between these sexual sins and violations of the faith."

He contends the Pennsylvania case is further evidence of the denomination's spiritual decline. "Isn't it interesting," he wonders, "that these folks who are pushing so hard for the violation of our sexual ethics are also getting more deeply involved in these syncretistic religions that leave the orbit of Christian faith and tradition?"

The Post-Gazette describes Edwards as "a Presbyterian minister active in advancing the full recognition of gay persons within the Pittsburgh Presbytery." As an "at large" minister, she works mostly through the Community of Reconciliation, an Oakland-based ecumenical congregation that remains open to what the newspaper describes as "sexual minorities." Williamson says if Edwards does not win in church court, she will likely become a martyr in the eyes of the media and homosexual activists.

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