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  • Affirmation: United Methodists
    Same-Sex Ruling has Employers Tweaking Benefits by Sam Hananel Associated Press
    Message 1 of 22 , Jul 22, 2013
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      Same-Sex Ruling has Employers Tweaking Benefits

      by Sam Hananel

      Associated Press

      Friday Jul 5, 2013


      The Supreme Court’s landmark ruling on same-sex marriage has private employers around the country scrambling to make sure their employee benefit plans comply with the law.


      The impact of the decision striking down part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act is clear in the 13 states and the District of Columbia where gay marriage is currently legal, or soon will be: Same-sex married couples must be treated the same as other spouses under federal laws governing tax, health care, pensions and other federal benefits.




      ACLU Sues State of Montana Over Benefits for Gay Couples

      Associated Press

      Tuesday Jul 16, 2013


      A civil rights organization filed a new lawsuit against the state Monday on behalf of seven gay couples in an attempt to win for them the same benefits that married couples receive in Montana.

      The American Civil Liberties Union of Montana filed its amended complaint after the state Supreme Court rejected its first lawsuit in December for being too broad and not identifying specific laws that are discriminatory.




      Lawsuit Seeks to Overturn Ark. Gay Marriage Ban

      by Chuck Bartels

      Associated Press

      Tuesday Jul 16, 2013


      Three gay couples filed a federal lawsuit Monday that seeks to overturn a 2004 Arkansas ban on same-sex marriage.


      Two of the couples applied to get married in Pulaski County and were turned down. One couple was legally married in New York but "are treated as legal strangers in their home state of Arkansas," according to the lawsuit filed by attorney Jack Wagoner III of Little Rock.




      Equal marriage bill passes final House of Commons stage and will receive Royal Assent

      by Joseph Patrick McCormick
      16 July 2013, 9:21pm


      The equal marriage bill for England and Wales has once again been passed in the House of Commons, and will soon will be given Royal Assent to become law.




      Britain Legalizes Gay Marriage

      Associated Press

      Wednesday Jul 17, 2013


      Britain on Wednesday legalized gay marriage after Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal stamp of approval, clearing the way for the first same-sex weddings next summer.

      Lawmakers cheered as House of Commons Speaker John Bercow said royal assent had been given - one day after the bill to legalize same-sex marriage in England and Wales cleared Parliament.

      The queen’s approval was a formality and is the last step necessary for a bill to become law.




      Gay Marriage Supporters Launch $2 Million Illinois Campaign

      Associated Press

      Wednesday Jul 17, 2013


      Gay-marriage supporters are launching a $2 million statewide campaign to approve same-sex marriage in Illinois.

      Illinois Unites for Marriage is a coalition representing gay rights, civil rights and political groups.




      Tory MP Mike Freer: If gay people pay the same contributions, their pension rights must be the same

      by Scott Roberts
      17 July 2013, 7:23pm


      Conservative MP Mike Freer raised the issue of pensions inequality during Tuesday’s same-sex marriage Commons debate and said it was right to settle the discrepancy “whatever the cost”.




      Gay Marriage: Britain, France in Surprise Contrast

      by Angela Charlton and Gregory Katz

      Associated Press

      Wednesday Jul 17, 2013


      The French like to make fun of the British, joking about their repressed ways in matters of the heart. But when it came time to debate same-sex marriage, it was France that betrayed a deep conservative streak in sometimes violent protests - while the British showed themselves to be modern and tolerant.

      With little fanfare or controversy, Britain announced Wednesday that Queen Elizabeth II - hardly a social radical - had signed into law a bill legalizing same-sex marriages in England and Wales. France has also legalized gay marriages, but only after a series of gigantic protests attracting families from the traditional heartland that revealed a deeply split society.




      Equality Network calls on Scotland to legalise equal marriage following England & Wales Royal Assent

      by Scott Roberts
      17 July 2013, 3:13pm


      Scottish campaigners have welcomed Wednesday’s Royal Assent of the same-sex marriage act for England and Wales, and are using it to redouble their efforts to achieve marriage equality in Scotland.




      Equal marriage bill for England and Wales given Royal Assent and is now law

      by Joseph Patrick McCormick
      17 July 2013, 2:18pm


      The equal marriage bill for England and Wales was today given Royal Assent, and is now officially law.




      N.Y. official pushes feds to recognize same-sex marriages

      MICHAEL GORMLEY | Associated Press

      Friday, July 19, 2013


      ALBANY, N.Y. — New York state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli is using the power of the state’s $160 billion pension system to urge President Barack Obama to order federal agencies and programs around the country to recognize gay marriages performed in New York.


      DiNapoli’s idea is to adopt a “place of celebration” standard in federal government, meaning gay marriages that take place in New York would be recognized even in states that do not permit them. It could be a big push in DiNapoli’s effort to get major companies that do business with the state pension fund to adopt anti-discrimination measures when providing benefits for gay couples.




      For some Minnesota Methodists, a same-sex marriage conundrum on Aug. 1

      by Sasha Aslanian, Minnesota Public Radio

      July 22, 2013


      MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota's new marriage law goes into effect Aug. 1, creating new urgency for many faith communities about whether they will perform such weddings, particularly those that have been wrestling with how to address sexual orientation for decades.


      Among those torn over the issue are Methodists, who have a unique history on the matter in Minnesota -- as retired pastor Roger Lynn would surely testify.




      Same-sex marriage in Minnesota: A cross-section of faith communities' approaches

      by Sasha Aslanian, Minnesota Public Radio,
      Mike Cronin, Minnesota Public Radio

      July 22, 2013


      ST. PAUL, Minn. — Same-sex couples can legally wed in Minnesota on Aug. 1. Marriage in the eyes of the state's many faith communities, however, is a different matter.


      Reactions from Minnesota religious organizations -- and sometimes from within those organizations -- vary widely.




      NY Official Pushes Feds to Recognize Gay Marriages

      by Michael Gormley

      Associated Press

      Friday Jul 19, 2013


      New York state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli is using the power of the state’s $160 billion pension system to urge President Barack Obama to order federal agencies and programs around the country to recognize gay marriages performed in New York.


      DiNapoli’s idea is to adopt a "place of celebration" standard in federal government, meaning that gay marriages that take place in New York would be recognized even in states that do not permit them. It could be a big push in DiNapoli’s effort to get major companies that do business with the state pension fund to adopt anti-discrimination measures when providing benefits for gay couples.




      Minnesota Gay Couples Await Guidance on Income Taxes

      Associated Press

      Friday Jul 19, 2013


      Minnesota gay couples preparing to get married after it becomes legal next month will have to wait a bit longer for guidance on their income taxes.




      San Diego County Clerk Seeks End to Gay Marriages

      by Paul Elias

      Associated Press

      Saturday Jul 20, 2013


      SAN FRANCISCO - The San Diego County clerk has asked the state Supreme Court to stop gay marriages.

      Ernest Dronenburg Jr. urged the state high court to immediately halt same-sex weddings while it considers his legal arguments that gay marriages remain illegal in California despite a U.S. Supreme Court’s decision widely regarded as authorizing gay weddings.




      Ohio Men Challenge State Law Denying Gay Marriage

      Associated Press

      Saturday Jul 20, 2013


      CINCINNATI - Two Ohio men have filed a federal lawsuit alleging Ohio violates the U.S Constitution by denying legal recognition to same-sex couples married in states where gay marriage is legal.

      James Obergefell and John Arthur of Cincinnati filed the lawsuit Friday in Cincinnati against Ohio’s governor, attorney general and the Cincinnati health department registrar who files death certificates.




      Minn. Churches Prepare for Gay Wedding Decisions

      Associated Press

      Monday Jul 22, 2013


      Minnesota’s new law allowing gay marriage takes effect Aug. 1, but one former United Methodist minister with a long history of support for the issue won’t be able to publicly preside over any same-sex weddings.


      Roger Lynn, a retired United Methodist pastor, performed a wedding ceremony in 1971 for two Minneapolis men, Jack Baker and Michael McConnell, whose legal fight to be allowed to marry was among the nation’s first. Lynn’s role in the ceremony caused ruffles in the larger United Methodist community, and a year later its General Conference passed a resolution defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman.




      32 comments Americas · Law · Politics · USA 

      US: Democratic West Virginia Representative backs anti-equal marriage federal ban

      by Scott Roberts
      19 July 2013, 7:08pm


      A Democratic lawmaker is joining dozens of Republicans who want to ban same-sex marriages in the US Constitution – even though there efforts are unlikely to succeed.




      US: City measure introduced to allow same-sex married couples full marriage benefits

      by Joseph Patrick McCormick
      19 July 2013, 4:39pm


      A measure has been introduced in the city of Richmond, Virginia which would allow employees of the city in same-sex marriages to receive the same benefits as straight married couples.



    • Affirmation: United Methodists
      Judge Rules for Ohio Men’s Same-Sex Marriage Associated Press Tuesday Jul 23,
      Message 2 of 22 , Aug 4, 2013
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        Judge Rules for Ohio Men’s Same-Sex Marriage

        Associated Press

        Tuesday Jul 23, 2013


        A federal judge has ruled in favor of two Ohio men who want their out-of-state marriage recognized as one of them nears death, a case that’s seen as encouraging for same-sex marriage supporters in the state.




        NM Attorney General Not Defending Gay Marriage Ban

        by Barry Massey

        Associated Press

        Tuesday Jul 23, 2013


        New Mexico Attorney General Gary King told the state’s highest court on Monday that a prohibition on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.


        In written arguments filed with the court, King said the justices should invalidate the state’s ban on gay marriage if they agree to resolve the issue in a lawsuit filed by two Santa Fe men who were denied a marriage license.




        Mo. Court Seeks More Input on Gay Death Benefits

        Associated Press

        Tuesday Jul 23, 2013


        A U.S. Supreme Court decision about federal benefits for gay couples has prompted the Missouri Supreme Court to take a second look at a pending case.




        NY to Refund Gay Couples Forced to Pay Estate Tax

        by Michael Gormley

        Associated Press

        Tuesday Jul 23, 2013


        Same-sex spouses forced to pay high New York estate taxes upon the death of their partner will get refunds from the state.

        Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that the refunds are being issued as a result of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act, also known as DOMA.




        Archbishop of Kenya warns Justin Welby against supporting civil partnerships

        by Scott Roberts
        23 July 2013, 1:28pm


        The Archbishop of Kenya, Dr Eliud Wabukala, has criticised the Archbishops of Canterbury and York because he feels they are softening their position on same-sex civil partnerships.




        Ky. Couple Challenges Ban on Same-Sex Marriage

        by Brett Barrouquere

        Associated Press

        Friday Jul 26, 2013


        A Louisville couple challenged Kentucky’s ban on same-sex marriages, saying Friday that the state isn’t treating them and other same-sex couples on equal footing with other married couples.


        Gregory Bourke and Michael Deleon, both 55, are asking a federal judge in Louisville to require the state to recognize valid unions from other states and countries.




        Federal Judge Orders Ohio Officials to Recognize Same-Sex Couple’s Marriage

        by Justin Snow

        Metro Weekly

        Saturday Jul 27, 2013


        A federal judge Monday ordered Ohio officials to recognize the marriage of a same-sex couple wed in Maryland on the death certificate of one of the two men currently in hospice care.


        Timothy Black.jpgU.S. District Court Judge Timothy Black wrote in Monday’s order that despite Ohio’s 2004 constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, "Ohio law has historically and unambiguously provided that the validity of a marriage is determined by whether it complies with the law of the jurisdiction where it was celebrated."




        July 27, 2013 9:05AM

        New Challenges to Gay Marriage Bans From Within States & Denominations

        Post by Candace Chellew-Hodge


        Don't look now but the marriage equality snowball is gaining momentum. Since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act allowing legally wed gay and lesbian couples access to the federal rights and responsibilities of marriage, LGBT rights groups have wasted no time using the momentum to push for more changes.


        Couples in states like Kentucky, Virginia, Arkansas and Pennsylvania have filed lawsuits challenging those states' laws against marriage equality.




        Gay Marriage Court Win In Ohio May Spawn New Suits

        by Amanda Lee Myers

        Associated Press

        Saturday Jul 27, 2013


        Two gay men who successfully sued to get their out-of-state marriage recognized in Ohio despite a state ban are at the forefront of what supporters and experts believe will be a rush of similar lawsuits aiming to take advantage of an apparent legal loophole.

        John Arthur of Cincinnati, who is dying of Lou Gehrig’s disease, won the right to be listed as married on his death certificate and to have his partner of more than 20 years listed as his surviving spouse.




        Lawmakers to Revive Gay Marriage Debate in Neb.

        by Grant Schulte

        Associated Press

        Monday Jul 29, 2013


        Nebraska lawmakers will revive a gay marriage debate later this year, with a hearing that could lead to a proposed ballot measure on the issue.


        The Legislature’s Judiciary Committee will convene on Oct. 4 to review Nebraska’s constitutional amendment that defines marriage as the union of a man and a woman.




        Nigeria Denies Will Allow Gay Married Diplomats

        Associated Press

        Monday Jul 29, 2013


        Nigeria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs is denying reports the minister said he would allow gay married diplomats to be accredited.




        Mexico: State of Colima legalises civil unions for same-sex couples


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      • Affirmation: United Methodists
        UruguayÆs Same-Sex Marriage Law Takes Effect Monday Aug 5, 2013 As reported in BBC News , today
        Message 3 of 22 , Aug 18, 2013
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          Uruguay’s Same-Sex Marriage Law Takes Effect

          Monday Aug 5, 2013


          As reported in BBC News, today Rodrigo Borda and Sergio Miranda became the first same-sex couple to register to marry in Uruguay, just hours after the law legalizing gay took effect in the country. The couple plans to marry in September.


          The marriage equality bill, which passed by overwhelming majorities in both houses of the legislature last April and was signed into law by President José Mujica in May, makes Uruguay the second country in Latin America to offer full marriage rights to all of its citizens.




          Ill. Governor Says Wis. Should Legalize Gay Marriage

          Associated Press

          Monday Aug 5, 2013


          Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn says Wisconsin should follow the lead of other Midwest states and legalize gay marriage.

          Quinn said Saturday during a break at the National Governors Association meeting in Milwaukee that gay people should not have more rights in some states in the region and less in others.




          Marriage Equality Not Coming to Wisconsin Anytime Soon

          by Jason St. Amand

          National News Editor

          Monday Aug 5, 2013


          Same-sex couples hoping to tie the knot in Wisconsin may have to put any wedding plans on hold for awhile, after Gov. Scott Walker (R) made some discouraging comments at a weekend conference in Milwaukee, the Huffington Post reports.




          Lawsuit Challenges Illinois Gay Marriage Ban

          Associated Press

          Tuesday Aug 6, 2013


          CHICAGO - A Cook County judge is scheduled to hear arguments on whether to dismiss a case challenging Illinois’ ban on same-sex marriage.

          Circuit Judge Sophia Hall will hear arguments Tuesday.




          West PA Mayor Marries Gay Men with E. PA License

          Associated Press

          Tuesday Aug 6, 2013


          BRADDOCK, Pa.-A Pittsburgh-area mayor has married two men who obtained a license from an eastern Pennsylvania county official who has issued more than 60 licenses to same-sex couples despite a state law that defines marriage as a contract between one man and one woman.




          Decision on Same-Sex Marriage Lawsuit Next Month

          Associated Press

          Wednesday Aug 7, 2013


          CHICAGO After hearing nearly two hours of arguments, a Cook County judge said Tuesday she’ll decide whether to dismiss a lawsuit challenging Illinois’ gay marriage ban late next month.




          Demand For Gay-Marriage Licenses in Pa. is Rising

          Associated Press

          Wednesday Aug 7, 2013


          Demand among same-sex couples for marriage licenses from an eastern Pennsylvania county official flouting state law shows no sign of slacking.




          Pentagon May Revise Same-Sex Benefits

          Associated Press

          Wednesday Aug 7, 2013


          WASHINGTON -- The Pentagon is poised to extend health care, housing and other benefits to the same-sex spouses of military members by the end of August, but may reverse earlier plans to provide benefits to gay partners who are not married.




          Taiwan: Authorities uphold first same-sex transgender marriage

          by Aaron Day
          8 August 2013, 3:21pm


          Authorities in Taiwan have agreed not to revoke the marriage status of a local transgender couple, in a move activists have called a “benchmark” ruling.




          Exclusive: Alex Salmond says ‘It’s Time’ for equal marriage in Scotland because it’s the ‘right thing to do’

          by Scott Roberts
          8 August 2013, 10:59am


          Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond has spoken out about why he supports equal marriage in a video recorded as part of the Equality Network’s It’s Time campaign.




          US: Pentagon to extend some benefits to same-sex military spouses by end of August

          by Joseph Patrick McCormick
          8 August 2013, 1:32am


          Reports suggest that the Pentagon is to extend health care, housing and other benefits to the same-sex spouses of military members by the end of this month.




          Brazil Army Must Recognize Same-Sex Civil Union

          Associated Press

          Friday Aug 9, 2013


          A court has ordered Brazil’s Army for the first time to recognize a same-sex civil union between a sergeant and his companion.




          Pa. County Grants 100th Same-Sex Marriage License

          by Maryclaire Dale

          Associated Press

          Friday Aug 9, 2013


          A suburban Philadelphia county defying Pennsylvania’s marriage law issued its 100th same-sex license Friday, just weeks after opening the courthouse door to gay men and women.




          Brazil: Court orders army to recognise same-sex civil union

          by Joseph Patrick McCormick
          9 August 2013, 6:10pm


          The judge ruled that the army must recognise the civil union of the same-sex couple

          For the first time in Brazil, a court has ordered the Brazilian Army to reconise a same-sex civil union.




          Gay Rights Group: Don’t Delay Marriage in N.J.

          Associated Press

          Sunday Aug 11, 2013


          TRENTON - Lawyers for a group of gay couples said in a court filing Friday that New Jersey’s key argument against allowing same-sex marriage immediately is "contrary to established law."




          US: Pennsylvania Health Department says issue of same-sex marriage licences ‘risks causing serious harm’

          by Joseph Patrick McCormick
          12 August 2013, 11:49pm


          The decision by a Pennsylvania county clerk to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples could result in a separation of powers violation which ”risks causing serious and limitless harm”, a filing by lawyers for the state Health Department said on Monday.




          Nigerian bishops: We’re against equal marriage but empathise with people who live with ‘homosexual tendencies’

          by Scott Roberts
          12 August 2013, 5:26pm


          A group of bishops in Nigeria have warned against equal marriage but say they “empathise with people who live with homosexual and gay tendencies”.




          Source: Former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard considered reversing equal marriage opposition

          by Daniel Carter
          12 August 2013, 12:25pm


          It’s being reported by an Australian broadcaster that former Prime Minister Julia Gillard was tempted to drop her opposition to equal marriage during her time in office.




          US: New Jersey judge to hear potentially groundbreaking case on implications of DOMA strike-down

          by Joseph Patrick McCormick
          11 August 2013, 4:15pm


          A New Jersey court case will this week hear oral arguments in a test of the implications of the Supreme Court ruling which struck down key sections of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), to find out what it means for that states.




          Same-Sex Couples Seeking Insurance Wait For IRS Rules

          by Michelle Andrews

          August 13, 201310:49 AM


          Now that the Supreme Court has ruled that the federal ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, federal agencies have to figure out the regulations that govern everything from to income taxes.




          Gay Ohio Couple Win Extension Recognizing Marriage

          Associated Press

          Tuesday Aug 13, 2013


          CINCINNATI: A federal judge on Tuesday extended a temporary restraining order preventing state authorities from enforcing their ban on gay marriage against two men who got married in another state as one of them nears death.



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        • Affirmation: United Methodists
          Religious leaders in Hawaii call for passage of marriage equality bill Governor says special session to consider marriage bill is very likely OSKAR GARCIA
          Message 4 of 22 , Sep 5, 2013
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