Methodist Bishop Files Complaint Over Lesbian Ceremony
Bishop Melvin Talbert has "with sorrow and regret" filed a complaint against the 69 ministers who participated in a "holy union" lesbian commitment ceremony last January in Sacramento. This complaint will be brought before a committee of clergy and lay people who will investigate the charges and decide whether or not the participants should face a church trial. If convicted, the 69 ministers named in the complaint could lose their status as Methodist ministers.
Talbert is himself opposed to the church's ban on same-sex commitment ceremonies, but was forced to file the complaint based on church law. Talbert has pledged to keep speaking out against his Church's position, saying "I will uphold the law, but I will not be silenced."
The Rev. Don Fado led the ceremony uniting Jeanne Barnett and Ellie Charlton, which was attended by more than 1,000 ministers, lays leaders, lesbian and gay individuals, and others. "The fact that we had so many participate....was to make a statement to the church that it needs to re-evaluate this policy," said Fado. Ministers chanted the following blessing: "O God, our maker, we gladly proclaim to the world that Jeanne and Ellie are loving partners together for life." Fado later explained, "In our church, unfortunately, I'm allowed to come into their (Jeanne and Ellie's) home and bless their house, bless their car, bless their tractor and even bless their dog, but I am not allowed to bless them."
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The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
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The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .