Shuck and Jive

Friday, August 24, 2007

Synod PJC says no to gay weddin's

Rev. Jane Spahr lost round two in her marriage case. Here are details from Associated Press. The Witherspoon Society has news about it as well as That All May Freely Serve and from Janie's website.

She was accused of being naughty for conducting a marriage ceremony for two women. The Redwoods Presbytery Permanent Judicial Commission (PJC) ruled that she had acted in terms of freedom of conscience. This decision was appealed and went to the Synod of the Pacific PJC who just ruled 6-2 against her right to do so. The case will likely be appealed to the General Assembly PJC (kind of like the supreme court).

It is not as if anything is going to happen to her. She is retired and if ultimately "guilty" will receive a rebuke. "Bad, bad. Don't do it again." The case is symbolic and will carry precedent for other similar cases. Of the decision, Rev. Spahr said:

“I am deeply saddened that our church has chosen not to recognize the loving relationships of members of its own family.” Rev. Spahr continued, “These couples and many like them have found a sacred trust in their love for each other; this reversal of the Presbytery’s decision promotes a belief that somehow this love is less than valid.” Spahr said, “The church’s pervasive attitude of prejudice promotes violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.”
Yeah, me too. Saddened but not defeated!

I like Rev. Spahr.

Here is the full text of the decision.


  1. What should happen to church officers who refuse to follow the constitution?

  2. The question is not whether or not a church officer refuses to follow the constitution, but how the larger body interprets the constitution. She is in her mind following the constitution. Church courts will decide, I suppose.