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FAITH LEADERS COMMEND RABBIS' BLESSING OF SAME-GENDER UNIONS

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  • U.M. Cornet
    CALLED OUT INFORMATION SERVICE ... FAITH LEADERS COMMEND RABBIS BLESSING OF SAME-GENDER UNIONS: EQUAL PARTNERS IN FAITH asks other communities to follow
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 31, 2000
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      CALLED OUT INFORMATION SERVICE

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      FAITH LEADERS COMMEND RABBIS' BLESSING OF SAME-GENDER UNIONS:

      EQUAL PARTNERS IN FAITH asks other communities to follow lead.

      *************************
      EQUAL PARTNERS IN FAITH
      Contact: Rev. Steven Baines
      (202) 296-4672 ext. 14
      EPFNatlOfc@...
      March 29, 2000
      ************************

      Washington, DC - Today leaders from EQUAL PARTNERS IN FAITH (EPF)
      applauded the courageous action of the Central Conference of American
      Rabbis (CCAR) in sanctioning same-gender unions. Yesterday's resolution,
      overwhelmingly passed by voice vote, applies to the 1,800 members of the
      CCAR representing 1.5 million Reform Jews, the largest branch of Judaism in
      North America.

      Rev. Steven Baines, Executive Coordinator of EPF and a Southern Baptist
      minister, stated: "In a society crying out for role models and heroes, these
      rabbis have offered to millions of people of faith the true meaning of
      'justice love.' They have shown by example that it is not enough to give
      lip-service to ending discrimination and violence against lesbian, gay,
      bisexual and transgendered individuals. Rather, faith leaders also must
      begin the process of healing by affirming the beauty and love offered in
      same-gender relationships."

      Rev. Baines also took issue with fellow Southern Baptist colleague,
      Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's ethics and
      public policy arm: "It is disappointing and alarming that a leader of the
      nation's largest protestant denomination would continue to espouse hateful
      and discriminatory language directed at LGBT individuals in light of this
      decision. How much more healing and redemption could be offered to our
      society if only SBC leaders would follow the example of Jewish leaders in
      the faith?"

      The resolution passed in Greensboro, NC underscored the diversity within the
      Jewish Reform movement by stating the CCAR would respect the decision of
      those rabbis who choose not to officiate at such ceremonies. Given that the
      debate lasted only an hour, the spirit of the meeting obviously was about
      tolerance and respect for all of God's children.

      Rev. Meg Riley, Co-chair of EPF's Board of Directors, offered these
      congratulatory words: "As faith leaders, we commend the actions of these
      rabbis which seek to celebrate the diversity of truth which lies in
      spiritual exploration. It is clear that honest inquiry into the inherent
      worth and dignity of every person, regardless of sexual identity or
      orientation, brings harmony and inclusion. We call on religious leaders of
      all denominations to model these rabbis' compassionate example as they
      debate similar issues in subsequent months."

      ###

      Founded in 1997, EQUAL PARTNERS IN FAITH is a multi-faith, multi-racial
      network of religious leaders and people of faith committed to equality and
      diversity. Our diverse faith traditions and shared religious values lead us
      to affirm and defend the equality of all people, regardless of religion,
      race, ability, gender or sexual orientation. As people of faith, we actively
      oppose the manipulation of religion to promote exclusion and inequality.

      EQUAL PARTNERS IN FAITH is helping mainstream and progressive people of
      faith promote a more inclusive vision of religion and society.

      Equal Partners in Faith
      2026 P Street NW
      Washington, DC 20036
      (202) 296-4672 ext. 14
      (202) 296-4673 fax
      email: EPFNatlOfc@...
      http://www.us.net/epf

      Circulated by Laura Montgomery Rutt, EPF National Board of Directors
      epf@...

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