Two pastors are purposely disobeying the law and marrying gay couples
The ceremony has been planned to take place around the same time the church’s international voting body will consider proposals to repeal a ban on clergy marrying same-sex couples when it convenes next month.
Other Methodist clergy have previously officiated sme-sex marriages which resulted in the reprimanding and defrocking. The stakes are also high for the pair who are now challenging in an act of civil disobedience, with Bishop Melvin Talbert saying,
“The ultimate action would be removal of my order, I would no longer be a bishop.It was race discrimination then, and it is discrimination based on sexual orientation now.
“Doing it now will lay this issue squarely before them in a way that hasn’t happened before,” Talbert said. “If the delegates are open-minded, this could have a positive impact.”
Talbert was also arrested with Martin Luther King Jr. in the Atlanta sit-ins in 1960 — linked the wedding to civil rights protests, saying the service “is an act of civil disobedience. The only difference is we are giving it another name in calling it biblical obedience.”
“I have to make a choice between my church and God, and I am choosing God,” he explained, saying the church's anti-gay policies “are immoral, unjust, and oppressive, and they should no longer deserve our loyalty and support.”
“Discrimination is discrimination no matter where it is,” he added. “It was race discrimination then, and it is discrimination based on sexual orientation now.”