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National Religious Leaders Call on People of Faith

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  • U.M. Cornet
    CALLED OUT INFORMATION SERVICE ... * PLEASE CIRCULATE * NATIONAL RELIGIOUS LEADERS CALL ON PEOPLE OF FAITH TO SPEAK OUT IN SUPPORT OF ALL FAMILIES
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 12, 2000
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      CALLED OUT INFORMATION SERVICE
      ---------------------------------------------

      * PLEASE CIRCULATE *

      NATIONAL RELIGIOUS LEADERS CALL ON PEOPLE OF FAITH TO SPEAK OUT IN
      SUPPORT OF ALL FAMILIES

      *****************************************
      NATIONAL RELIGIOUS LEADERSHIP ROUNDTABLE
      February 11, 2000
      Press Release - For Immediate Release
      Contact: Rev. Nori Rost 719-332-1598
      *****************************************

      The National Religious Leadership Roundtable, a national network of
      leaders of faith, religious, and spiritual organizations that support
      Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender equality, issued the following
      statement of support for families in California:

      On March 7, California residents will be faced with a ballot initiative
      known as the Limitation of Marriage Act, which limits civil marriage rights
      to couples based on gender. The real issue facing voters is whether all
      families will be treated equally under the law.

      In TV ads that are running in California, proponents of the Limitation
      on Marriage Act, also known as Proposition 22, are trying to justify
      discrimination as 'law' and 'common sense.' But the supporters of
      Proposition 22 do not speak for those of us from countless faith and
      spiritual traditions who have a different understanding of 'common
      sense' and family. For us, it means challenging ourselves and others to see
      one another as neighbors, and bringing the spiritual values embraced by many
      religious traditions into our lives and our communities: the values of love,
      justice, compassion, and community.

      It is fortunate that in the United States, with thousands of religions
      and religious institutions, and different definitions of 'common sense', we
      do not base our laws on any one definition of common sense, or any one set
      of religious beliefs.

      The First Amendment guarantees that each religious institution is free
      to define marriage and families for their own religious purposes. In
      fact, many religious institutions' definitions of marriage do not
      discriminate against couples based on gender. However, regarding civil law
      and civil rights, the Constitution guarantees equality for all people
      regarding government institutions. Here in lies the distinction between
      religious and civil marriage.

      Only civil marriage can provide equity for all families in such matters as
      insurance coverage, hospital visitation rights, parenting rights,
      inheritance, taxation, and many other benefits and protections afforded to
      some families.

      There are loving families all across California and the United States,
      who work, pray, live and love together, who should have equal access to the
      protections of civil marriage. We believe that all couples,
      regardless of gender, who are willing to accept the responsibilities of
      marriage should be afforded the rights and benefits offered by the
      government.

      Furthermore, the members of the National Religious Leadership Roundtable
      wish to express their support for people all across the United States who
      are celebrating Freedom to Marry Day on February 12, 2000. We urge other
      people of faith to stand against the immorality of discrimination. We
      believe that it is our moral and civic duty to work for equality, justice,
      and a nation free from discrimination, and to secure these inherent rights
      for future generations.

      ----------------- end text----------------------

      The National Religious Leadership Roundtable is an interfaith network of
      more than 45 leaders from pro-gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender
      (GLBT) faith, spiritual and religious organizations. NRLR works to
      amplify the voice of pro-GLBT faith organizations in public discourse.
      The Roundtable is convened by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
      and Equal Partners in Faith.

      Participating Organizations include:

      Affirmation (United Methodist)
      Affirmation: Gay and Lesbian Mormons
      AIDS National Interfaith Network
      Al-Fatiha Foundation, (LGBTQ Muslims & Friends)
      American Friends Service Committee (Quaker)
      Americans United for Separation of Church and State
      Black Lesbian & Gay Leadership Forum
      Bretheren/Mennonite Council for Lesbian and Gay Concerns
      Christian Lesbians OUT (CLOUT)
      Congregation Beth Simchat Torah (Jewish)
      Dignity/USA (Catholic)
      Disciples Justice Action Network
      Ecumenical Catholic Church
      Equal Partners in Faith
      Evangelicals Concerned
      Fellowship of Reconciliation
      Gay, Lesbian and Affirming Disciples Alliance (GLAD)
      Human Rights Campaign
      Integrity (Episcopal)
      Interfaith Assembly
      Interfaith Alliance
      Interfaith Working Group
      Interweave (Unitarian Universalist)
      Lutherans Concerned / North America
      Methodist Federation for Social Action
      More Light Presbyterians
      National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
      New Ways Ministry
      Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays
      People For the American Way
      Q Spirit
      Reconciling Congregation Program
      Soulforce, Inc.
      That All May Freely Serve
      Unitarian Universalist Association
      United Church of Christ, Coalition for LGBT Concerns
      United Methodist Covenant Relationships Network (CORNET)
      Unity Fellowship Church
      Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches
      Women's Alliance for Theology Ethics and Ritual (WATER)
      World Congress of Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Jewish Organizations
      World Council of Churches, Urban Rural Mission

      (posted by Laura Montgomery Rutt - Coconvener of the Roundtable -
      lmrutt@...)

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