A Brazilian general’s comment that gay soldiers should not be allowed to command troops sparked fierce criticism today from gay rights groups and a national lawyers’ organisation that champions human rights
Sarah Jessica Parker has given away her tickets to the Sex and the City 2 premier in a bid to raise money for equal LGBT rights.
Kenya police on Friday arrested five suspected homosexuals in a coastal resort town after hundreds of residents protested over a planned gay wedding, a local official said.
Seeking to overcome a broadcast blackout imposed by the US Supreme Court, a pair of Los Angeles filmmakers have undertaken the task of faithfully recreating the federal trial on California’s same-sex marriage ban for the internet – all 60-plus hours of it; every “um,” “yes, your honour” and “objection!”
Episcopalians here and across the country are already divided over whether to elect gay bishops and allow their priests to perform same-sex weddings. Now they have another issue to discuss: The marriage of two lesbians who are high-level Episcopal priests in Massachusetts.
In a wedding that appears to be the first of its kind in the U.S. – at least in the Episcopal Church – former Plymouth priest the Rev.
Mally Lloyd married the Rev. Katherine Ragsdale, dean and president of the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, on New Year’s Day. The Rev. Lloyd, a former pastor at Christ Church in Plymouth, is now a ranking official of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts.
The Rev. Lloyd and the Rev. Ragsdale were married in a ceremony at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Boston, with about 400 guests attending. Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, the state’s highest ranking Episcopal official, presided.
Bishop Shaw has openly supported gay marriage for years. In 2009, a few months after the Episcopal general convention voted to allow “generous pastoral response to meet the needs of members of this church,” he gave parish priests permission to perform same-sex marriages – to “solemnize” them, in the language of the Episcopal Church. Those actions came five years after gay marriage became legal in Massachusetts.
The Rev. Lloyd said Monday night she hopes fellow Episcopalians and others won’t focus on her marriage as a gay ceremony, but instead see it as “a commitment and marriage like any other.”
“We are asking God’s blessing, and asking the community and our friends to bless our marriage,” she said.
A spokeswoman for the national Episcopal office was uncertain about whether there have been other marriages of gay women priests.
The dean of the Episcopal Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley, Calif., the Rev. Mark Richardson, downplayed the possible impact of the marriage among conservative members of the church.
“Same-sex marriages are not new in Massachusetts, and the marriage between two members of the clergy in the Episcopal Church also has a history,” he said.
“I am grateful that their life together can have this public recognition,” the Rev. Richardson said.
A press release from the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge said the two women were introduced by a mutual friend in the summer of 2008.
That was a few months before the Rev. Lloyd was appointed canon to the ordinary – the diocese’s chief operating officer – and about a year before the Rev. Ragsdale became the divinity school’s dean and president.
During their New Year’s Day ceremony, Bishop Shaw said: “God always rejoices when two people who love each other make a lifelong commitment in marriage to go deeper into the heart of God through each other. It’s a profound pleasure for me to celebrate with God and my friends Katherine and Mally their marriage today.”
Conflicts over gay issues broke open in the American Episcopal church in 2003, when the New Hampshire diocese elected the openly gay Rev. Gene Robinson as bishop.
Since then a number of conservative U.S. dioceses have withdrawn from the American church and affiliated with overseas bishops – among them, small congregations in Attleboro, Marlboro and West Newbury.
The American Episcopal church has 2.2 million members, with 68,000 in Massachusetts.
The Rev. Lloyd was priest in charge and then pastor at Christ Church in Plymouth from 2002 to 2008.
In March 2004 – four months after the state supreme court’s historic ruling legalizing gay marriage – she told her parishioners she was a lesbian.
Now 57, she was appointed canon in November 2008. A Pennsylvania native, she was previously married for 24 years and has three adult children, who participated in the wedding Saturday. She was ordained as a priest in 1997 and was interim pastor at Christ Church in Needham before she went to Plymouth.
The Rev. Lloyd said a van of Christ Church parishioners and others from Plymouth attended the wedding.
“They have been so supportive,” the Rev. Lloyd said.
The Rev. Ragsdale, 52, is from Virginia. Before becoming dean of the divinity school she was president of the nonprofit Political Research Associates in Somerville.
© Copyright 2009 Pinkwire, Talent Media.
Designd & powerd by ENTWURF.