By: Shannon Ralph
The Presbyterian Church has made a bold move toward full inclusiveness of LGBT people and clergy into the church. On May 10, 2011, the Presbyterian Church USA ratified an amendment to the constitution of Presbyterian laws of ordained ministry to include the rite of ordination to gay and lesbian ministers who are in covenanted relationships. “Covenanted” relationships are people who are partnered or married to a same-sex spouse. Previously, gay ministers were not specifically excluded, but the church laws required unmarried ministers to live in “chasted singleness”.
As someone who lives most of my life in “chasted singleness” due to my partner and I working opposite schedules, I can say with certainty that it is no way to live. I applaud the Presbyterian Church, who now joins the ranks of the Congregational, Episcopalian, United Church of Christ, and Lutheran (ELCA only) denominations in allowing LGBT people to serve their God and their congregations openly.
Now let’s get to work on the Methodists, one of the few remaining mainstream protestant denominations that has yet to make the loving and just decision to ordain LGBT ministers. Come on all of you Methodists out there! Peer pressure—you know you want to do it!