Richmond (AP) – Virginia’s Republican-dominated House of Delegates approved a bill that seeks to protect people who oppose same-sex marriage, which critics said would open the door to discrimination and roll back gains the LGBT community has made toward equal treatment.
The measure aims to prohibit state agencies from punishing individuals and businesses for refusing services or taking other actions against same-sex couples, transgender people or someone who has extramarital sex. It would block the state from withholding grants or nixing contracts for individuals or groups that subscribe to those religious beliefs.
What if somebody came up to your party (which, for now, we’ll call “your life”) and told you through his or her whitened teeth that all of the victories you’ve fought for, all of the freedoms promised to you by your own constitution in your own country, didn’t matter anymore? We know, we know: This is the same sweaty-pitted badminton argument that comes along with every legislative back-and-forth session, either state or national. Red! Blue! Green! Translucent! But what if those values were so fundamental that their rolling back might result in you rolling into a ball and effectively giving up? What if they would mean that you would be perpetually sick, poor, fired or allowed to die there right next to the decency twig you clung to.
There’s a certain hollowness that comes with these realizations, an identity crisis that sets you apart from what your therapist might call the “river” to which sides you are supposed to cling when you need to catch a breath in a pause in life. Has your chest ever ached with the breadth of absolute futility? Well, given the current climate of state legislators (and presidential candidates) parading a nihilistic Mardi Gras against the rights of women and LGBT people (sometimes both!), that ache should inspire you to do more.
NEW YORK (AP) – Presiding Bishop Michael Curry said Jan. 15 the U.S. Episcopal Church will not roll back its acceptance of gay marriage despite sanctions imposed this week by Anglican leaders.
In a phone interview from England, where he attended the gathering of top Anglican archbishops, Curry said he told his fellow leaders they should expect no change. The top Episcopal legislative body, called General Convention, last year voted overwhelmingly to authorize same-sex marriage ceremonies in church. In response, Anglican leaders stripped the Episcopal Church of any role in deciding doctrine or determining how the Anglican Communion operates for three years, effectively reducing the church to observer status in the 85 million-member global fellowship.
Gina Durbin was faced with a challenge when she was appointed as interim pastor for Suncoast MCC in August, after the church experienced the death of its beloved pastor, Rev. Dr. Sherry Kennedy in March – the only pastor Suncoast had ever known. Durbin has been working to help the church heal ever since.
“It’s been quite amazing to get started working here and to get to know this congregation and to love them as their interim pastor,” Durbin says.
Here is a smattering of the events going on locally to honor World AIDS Day, many involving chances for you to know your HIV status, most involving fun with a splash of historical context and remembrance. Please check with the individual HIV agencies for more events.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A prominent Southern Baptist theologian on Oct. 5 spoke out against psychological counseling aimed at turning gay people straight, saying homosexuality cannot be turned off like a switch. Instead, he said, the “sin” of being attracted to a person of the same sex can be changed by turning to the Bible’s teachings.
The Rev. R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, said so-called conversion or reparative therapy doesn’t carry the redemptive power of prayer.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Episcopalians voted overwhelmingly July 1 to allow religious weddings for same-sex couples, solidifying the church’s embrace of gay rights that began more than a decade ago with the pioneering election of the first openly gay bishop.
The vote came in Salt Lake City at the Episcopal General Convention, just days after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized gay marriage nationwide. It passed in the House of Deputies, the voting body of clergy and lay participants at the meeting. The House of Bishops had approved the resolution Tuesday by 129-26 with five abstaining.
HILLSDALE, Mich. (AP) – A small private Michigan college is revisiting its communications policies after an email went out about a prayer gathering as the U.S. Supreme Court considers arguments over state bans on gay marriage.
The Jackson Citizen Patriot reports the all-campus email to students, faculty, staff and some alumni was written by a student and distributed by Peter Beckwith, Hillsdale College’s chaplain.
Orlando – Jeff Jones and Miss Sammy are two of Central Florida’s funniest and most beloved people who like to talk about other people (especially when other people are listening). So who better to take the stage first when Watermark Media and the Orlando International Fringe Festival join forces to launch the second coming of Movies Out Loud later this year?
Watermark is a multi-faceted media company using opportunities and innovations to communicate and advance LGBT interests, with a corporate emphasis on professionalism while building strong relationships with our readers, customers and community.
Watermark Media was founded by Tom Dyer in Orlando in 1994, and expanded to Tampa Bay in 1995. Dyer is an attorney, former board member of the Metropolitan Business Association and Tampa International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, and current advisory board member of the Harvey Milk Foundation.
Watermark prints up to 20,000 copies every other Thursday, and distributes them in more than 500 locations throughout Orlando, Tampa Bay, Sarasota and throughout the state. The newspaper donates more than $200,000 annually in free and sponsor advertising to worthy local and national LGBT non-profits.
Watermarkonline.com was launched in 1999. The award-winning newspaper currently maintains offices in Tampa Bay and Orlando and employs a full-time staff of 12, along with several part-time and freelance contributors.
Watermark Publishing Group, founded by publisher Rick Claggett, purchased Watermark in January of 2016. Rick Claggett is a long-time employee of Watermark Media and former board member of both the Metropolitan Business Association and Come Out With Pride.Read More...
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