Referendum 71 activities in Washington State have kept me so busy that I’ve had little time to watch marriage equality events unfolding in the other Washington.  But when I saw this delicious article by Tim Craig in today’s Washington Post, called “Pastors unite to support same-sex marriage in D.C.”, I just had to stop and take a look.  A quote from the article encapsulates what we here at The Blend have known but some in the general public may just be catching on to: ‘There is this myth out there that you can’t be pro-God and pro-gay’.

Move over Harry Jackson, because here’s the real face of D.C. clergy.  Meet The Reverends Christine Y. Wiley & Dennis W. Wiley of Covenant Baptist Church, and co-founders of Clergy United for Marriage Equality.

[T]he Rev. Christine Y. Wiley…noted that many District churches have a history of fighting for social and economic justice. … “It just really seemed like a natural thing that we would do,” Wiley said. “We believe as African Americans who have been discriminated against . . . we don’t have the right to discriminate against anyone else.”

Kinda busts that religious and/or black = anti-gay myth wide open, doesn’t it?  And lest you think these two are some kind of token or anomaly, read on below the fold.The WaPo article says

Although ministers opposed to same-sex marriage in the District have campaigned more vigorously, a growing number of religious leaders are mobilizing to support the proposal.

About 200, representing nearly every faith, have formed D.C. Clergy United for Marriage Equality. On Thursday night, more than 100 of them gathered at Asbury United Methodist Church in Northwest Washington to support a bill that D.C. Council member David A. Catania (I-At Large) introduced this month that would allow same-sex couples to marry.

“There is this myth out there that you can’t be pro-God and pro-gay,” said the Rev. Robert M. Hardies, senior minister of All Souls Church, Unitarian, in the Columbia Heights area. “We are doing the best we can to share the message that there is strong support from within D.C.’s religious community for equality.” …

“The coalition here is able to identify across all lines, all wards of the city, all races, all backgrounds,” said Nick McCoy, an organizer for the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights group. “People have come to the forefront with the argument that this something that churches don’t back and believe in, and we say, that is not true.”

By adopting an authoritative tone, the Harry Jacksons of the world give heterosupremecists permission to judge and persecute LGBT people.  Enter Clergy United and similar organizations around the country leading the way along another path: the embrace of religiosity and human rights together.  Something tells me that Harry Jackson’s tiny star is fast being eclipsed by the genuinely heavenly lights in D.C..  Time to get a day job.

Here’s the full Declaration of Religious Support for Marriage Equality.

Declaration of Religious Support for Marriage Equality

We are District of Columbia clergy and religious leaders of many faiths, races, ethnicities, and sexual orientations. We represent religious institutions in every ward in the District. We have worked together over many years for peace and justice and now join our voices again to speak a faithful word for freedom and equality.

We declare that our faith calls us to affirm marriage equality for loving same-sex couples.

Our religious traditions and scriptures teach us that wherever love is present, God is also present. One of God’s greatest gifts to us is our human capacity to love one another. The ability of two people to enter into relationships and form families of love and care is one expression of this gift. It is holy and good. We therefore affirm the right of loving same-gender couples to enter into such relationships on an equal basis with loving heterosexual couples.

We recognize that there are principled differences on this issue within the religious community. We affirm that the state should not require any religious group to officiate at, or bless, same-gender marriages. However, the state also should not favor the convictions of one religious group over another by denying individuals their fundamental civil right to marry whom they love.

Recognizing that there is heartfelt disagreement on this issue, we call on all people of the District of Columbia to engage in a respectful and loving dialogue on marriage equality. As religious leaders, we commit ourselves to such a dialogue and encourage our colleagues on all sides of this issue to do the same.

God is love and love is for everyone. In this spirit we raise our voices in the struggle for the right and freedom to marry.

Steering Committee

The Rev. Amy Butler, Calvary Baptist Church

The Rev. Karen Brau, Luther Place Church

The Rev. Kendal Brown, City of Refuge Church of Greater Washington

The Rev. Mari E. Castellanos, United Church of Christ

The Rev. Rainey Cheeks, Inner Light Ministries

The Rev. Graylan Hagler, Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ

The Rev. Robert M. Hardies, All Souls Church, Unitarian

The Rev. Cedric Harmon, City of Refuge of Greater Washington

The Rev. Nathan Harris, Lincoln Temple United Church of Christ

The Rev. Ronald E. Hopson, First Congregational United Church of Christ

The Rev. Steve Huber, The Washington National Cathedral

The Rev. Jeff Krehbiel, Church of the Pilgrims

The Rev. Luis Leon, St Johns Church, Lafayette Square

The Rev. Dyan Abena McCray, Unity Fellowship Church

The Rabbi Toby Manewith, Bet Mishpachah

The Rev. Abena McCray, Unity Fellowship Church

The Rev. Noemi Mena, National City Christian Church (not yet confirmed)

The Rev. Alton B. Pollard, Howard Divinity School

The Rev. Rosetta Ross, Howard Divinity School

The Rev. Louis Shockley, Jr., Asbury United Methodist Church

The Rev. Dean Snyder, Foundry United Methodist Church

The Rev. Christine Y. Wiley, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Dennis W. Wiley, Covenant Baptist Church

Co-Signers

Imam Daayiee Abdullah, Al-Fatiha Foundation

The Rev. Paul Abernathy, St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Capitol Hill

The Rev. Wm. D. Aldridge, Jr, Dumbarton United Methodist Church

The Rev. Mary Andreolli, Alliance of Baptists

The Rev. Charlie Arehart, Metropolitan Community Church

Elder Wallace Babington, retired, Washington, DC

The Rev. Steven C. Baines, National City Christian Church

The Rev. Eric Bebber, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

The Rev. Elizabeth F. Bebber, Baptist minister

The Rev. John Beddingfield, All Souls Memorial Episcopal Church

The Rev. Alice Ogden Bellis, Howard University School of Divinity

Min. Eunesa Benoman, Covenant Baptist Church

Rabbi Arthur Blecher, Humanist Judaism

The Rev. Michael Bledsoe, Riverside Baptist Church

The Rev. Susan N. Blue, St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Timothy Boggs, St. Alban’s Episcopal Parish

The Rev. Loyce Borgman, Church of the Brethren

The Rev. Ben Boswell, Commonwealth Baptist Church

The Rev. Rob Boulter, St. Columba’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Charles Braun, Bishop , Old Catholic

Min. John-Anthony Burchall, Covenant Baptist Church

Min. Debra L. Camphor, Covenant Baptist Church

Dr. Shaun Casey, Wesley Theological Seminary

Bishop John Bryson Chane, Episcopal Diocese of Washington

The Rev. Randolph C. Charles, the Church of the Epiphany

The Rev. Martha Clark, St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Douglas Clark, First Congregational United Church of Christ

Rabbi Kenneth L. Cohen, American University Hillel

The Rev. Donelda A. Cook, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev, Countess Clark Cooper, Faith Temple

The Rev Jan Naylor Cope, Episcopal Diocese of Washington

The Rev. Henry Curry, Foundry United Methodist Church

Cantor Laura T. Croen, Temple Sinai

The Rev. Peter L. DeGroote, Senior Pastor, The United Church

Rev. Steven E. Delany, American Apostolic Church

The Rev. Jorge Delgado, Metropolitan Community Church of Washington

Min. DeWayne Davis, Metropolitan Community Church of Washington

Bishop Jane Holmes Dixon, retired, Episcopal Diocese of Washington

Rabbi Fred Scherlinder Dobb, Adat Shalom

The Rev. Bill Doggett, Christ Episcopal Church, Washington Parish

The Rev. Rose Duncan, St. Columba’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. John F. Dwyer, St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church

The Rev. Frank Gasque Dunn, St. Stephen and the Incarnation Episcopal Church

The Rev. Renata E. Eustis, Christ Lutheran Church

Rabbi Charles Feinberg, Adas Israel Congregation

Min. Michael R. Fisher, Jr., Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Carol Flett, Washington National Cathedral

The Rev. Sidney D. Fowler, Hope United Church of Christ

The Rev. Dr. Malcolm L. Frazier, Howard University

The Rev. Kenneth Fuller, Cleveland Park Congregational United Church of Christ

The Rev. Tony Gattis, Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church

The Rev. Roger Gench, The New York Avenue Presbyterian Church

The Rev. Barbara Gerlach, First Congregational United Church of Christ

Min. Teresa A. Gilchrist, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Ann Gillespie, Christ Church, Alexandria

The Rev. Ashley Goff, Church of the Pilgrims

The Rev. John M. Graham, Grace Episcopal Church, Georgetown,

The Rev. Paula Clark Green, St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Louise Green, All Souls Church, Unitarian

The Rev. Douglas A. G. Greenaway, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Rock Creek Parish

Ms. Eileen Guenther, Wesley Theological Seminary

The Rev. Leah Grundset, Calvary Baptist Church

The Rev. Brian E. Hamilton, Westminster Presbyterian DC

The Rev. Ruth W. Hamilton, Westminster Presbyterian DC

The Rev. Youtha Hardmam-Cromwell, Wesley Theological Seminary

Dr. Derrick Harkins, Nineteenth Street Baptist Church

The Rev. Vincent P. Harris, St. George’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Susan Hayward, First Congregational United Church of Christ

The Rev. Stan Hastey, Alliance of Baptists

The Rev. Lillie Henley, Universalist National Memorial Church

Ms. Mary Herman, Community Leader, Washington Ethical Society

Rabbi Joui M. Hessel, Washington Hebrew Congregation

Mr. Tony Hileman, Ethical Culture Leader

The Rev. Bernard F. Hillenbrand, Foundry United Methodist Church

The Rev. David Hopkins, Wesley Theological Seminary

The Rev. Denise Dombkowski Hopkins, Wesley Theological Seminary

The Rev. Monique Ellison, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Carolyn Hutchinson, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Whit Hutchison, Pastor, Wesley United Methodist Church

The Rev. Margee Iddings, Church of the Pilgrims

The Rev. Msgr. Jameson, Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle

Deacon Carla Johnson, Unity Fellowship Church of Baltimore

The Rev. Skip Jordan, Metropolitan Community Church of Washington

The Rev. Meredith Lovell Keseley, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church

The Rev. John S. Kidd, Augustana Lutheran Church

The Rev. Kenneth H. King, Covenant Baptist Church

Min. D. K. Kirkley-Cain, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Thomas J. Knoll, First Trinity Lutheran Church

The Rev. Mary E. Kraus, Dumbarton United Methodist Church

The Rev. Alisa Lasater, Capitol Hill United Methodist Church

Rabbi Esther Lederman, Temple Micah

The Rev. Nancy Lee Jose, St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church

Mr. Walter LeFlore, All Souls Church, Unitarian

The Rev. DeeAnne L. Lowman, Foundry United Methodist Church

The Rev. Melora Lynngood, Unitarian Universalist minister

The Rev. Shana A. Lynngood, All Souls Church, Unitarian

The Rev. Jeanne MacKenzie, Westminster Presbyterian Church

The Rev. Andrea Martin, St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church

The Rev. Dean McDonald, Presbyterian minister

The Rev. James L. McDonald, Presbyterian minister

The Rev. Lorrie Mcpherson, Metropolitan Community Church of Washington

The Rev. Brian Merritt, The Palisades Community Church

The Rev. Carol Howard Merritt, Western Presbyterian Church

The Rev. Judith E. Michaels, New York Avenue Presbyterian Church

Monsignor Gerald V. Miller, S.S.M., St. John the Beloved

The Rev. Daryl LC Moch, Inner Light Ministries

The Rev. Wendy Moen, First Trinity Lutheran Church

The Rev. Steven B. Moore, National City Christian Church

The Rev. E. Maynard Moore, Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church

The Rev. Mary Clark Moschella, Wesley Theological Seminary

The Rev. Michael Willett Newheart, Howard University School of Divinity

The Rev. Susan Newman, Peoples Congregational United Church of Christ

The Rev. Richard A. Nugent, Unitarian Universalist minister

Rabbi Jessica Oleon, Temple Sinai

The Rev. Dale Ostrander, United Church of Christ minister

The Rev. Edgar Palacios, Calvary Baptist Church

The Rev. Joseph M. Palacios, Georgetown University

The Rev. Charles A. Parker, Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church

The Rev. John Peterson, Washington National Cathedral

The Rev. Amanda Poppei, Washington Ethical Society

Rabbi Mindy Avra Portnoy, Temple Sinai

The Rev. Sandy Rector, Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church

Rabbi Fred N. Reiner, Temple Sinai

Min. Robert A. Renix, Covenant Baptist Church

Rabbi Elizabeth Richman, Jews United for Justice

The Rev. Donald Robinson, Unitarian Universalist minister

Rabbi Emeritus Bob Saks, Congregation Bet Mishpacha

The Rev. Lisa A. Saunders, St. John’s Church Lafayette Square

The Rev. Albert Scariato, St. John’s Episcopal Church, Georgetown Parish

The Rev. Mark Schaefer, American University

The Rev. Garner W. Van Scoyoc, Retired

Bishop Michael Seneco, Presiding Bishop, North American Old Catholic Church

Rabbi Susan N. Shankman, Washington Hebrew Congregation

The Rev. Jimmy Sherrod, Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church

The Rev. Walter Shropshire, Jr. Foundry United Methodist Church

The Rev. Carl Siegel, Pastoral Counseling and Consultation Center

The Rev. Martin Smith, St. Columba’s Episcopal Church

Ms. Deborah Sokolove, Wesley Theological Seminary

Rabbi Gil Steinlauf, Adas Israel Congregation

The Rev. Emily Blair Stribling, Washington National Cathedral

The Rev. Mary Sulerud, Episcopal Diocese of Washington

The Rev. Rosemari Sullivan, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Rock Creek Parish

The Rev. John B. Tate, Jr Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church

The Rev. Theresa Thames-Lynch, Foundry United Methodist Church

The Rev. Gwendolyn Tobias, Washington National Cathedral

The Rev. Archene Turner, Unitarian Universalist minister

The Rev. Carlton Veazey, The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice

The Rev. Janet Vincent, St. Columba’s Episcopal Church

Min. Aaron Wade, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. George B. Walker, Jr., Peoples Congregational United Church of Christ

The Rev. Martha Wallace, Christ Church, Washington Parish

The Rev. Andrew Walton, Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church

The Rev. Edward A. White, Presbyterian minister

The Rev. Howard W. Wiley, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Michael D. Wilker, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

Min. Kelly D. Wilkins, Covenant Baptist Church

The Rev. Diane Brenda Williams, Baptist minister

The Rev. Penny Willis, Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice

The Rev. Gayraud S. Wilmore, Presbyterian minister

The Rev. John W. Wimberly, Jr., Western Presbyterian Church

The Rev. J. Philip Wogaman, Wesley Theological Seminary

Rabbi Daniel G. Zemel, Temple Micah

Related:

* People of faith speaking out for Approve Referendum 71

* NOM throwing DC event pimping Bishop Harry Jackson on the program