Australian Pastors & Ministers supporting same-sex marriage

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Youth Coordinator
Joined in 2008
August 15, 2011, 23:37

Australian Clergy for Marriage Equality

Written by Andrew M Potts – Star Observer – 15 August 2011

A group of prominent Australian Christian clergy have put their support for same-sex marriage on the record a day before Christian opponents of marriage equality stage a rally in the Great Hall of Parliament in Canberra.

The Uniting Church, Baptist and Anglican clergy made their statements following the launch of a new Christian campaign for marriage equality, Christians For Gay Marriage, on Friday through which 9,400 Australian Christians have already sent letters to their MPs since its website ( was launched.

The clergy’s statements also appear on the campaign’s website.

“As the founder of the Christians For Gay Marriage lobby group and as someone who is an ordained minister with a same gendered partner I strongly support the right of GLBTI people to marry,” wrote Blackwood Uniting Church minister Leanne Jenski in her statement.

“I long for the day when my partner Susan and I can finally marry with the full blessing of the ‘church and state’. God is not against us but unfortunately some Christians are. Be assured there are many Christians out there who stand in solidarity with us.”

“Today in Australia we all live in a secular non-discriminatory society,” wrote Exodus Foundation founder and Ashfield Uniting Church minister Bill Crews (pictured), “Gay couples should be as free to marry as any other human couple.”

“If people wish to be married within a religious or spiritual institution’s framework then they should accept the rites and rules of that institution. However it is the state that legitimises all marriages.”

“How can I, a heterosexual who’s been very happily married for 50 years, tell anyone else they don’t have the right to form a loving, committed, lifelong union and enjoy the fruits of marriage as I have done?” wrote Rowland Croucher of John Mark Ministries, “Marriage is not a club to be restricted to some – like the Gospel, it is a blessing to be shared.”

“When a couple want to be part of the institution of marriage, when they fully accept the same rights and responsibilities of marriage and treat marriage with the respect it deserves, why should they not get married?” wrote Lilydale Baptist Church pastor Matt Glover, “As a Christian minister, I believe that marriage is under threat from many angles, but also believe that recognizing same-sex unions will help return marriage to its rightful place in society.”

“As a follower of Jesus I believe in the principle of radical hospitality,” wrote St James’ Uniting Canberra minister Roger Munson, “This is at the heart of his message.”

“As Christians we need to support those who are excluded and challenge those who through exclusion dehumanise and discriminate. I urge you to join the campaign to welcome our GLBT friends to express their love and commitment to each other through this special rite.”

“From a Christian point of view, marriage is an institution designed to serve two social needs – [to] contribute broadly to social stability [and to] provide a stable environment for the nurturing of children,” wrote Fr Dave Smith of Holy Trinity Church, Dulwich Hill.

“If this is the case then the only questions Christians need to concern themselves with when it comes to the issue of gay marriage are … Would gay marriage lead to greater social stability, [and] Would a married gay partnership be likely to provide a more secure environment for the nurturing of the children of a gay couple than an unmarried one?”

“In matters of faith it is difficult for the heart to remain where the head cannot,” wrote Tasmanian Uniting Church minister David Hunnerup, “Honest theological reflection in this modern era makes it impossible to see homosexual orientation and behaviour as aberrant or sinful.

“Right relationships emerge out of moral and ethical decision making, not gay or straight orientation. I make my case for same sex marriage here.”

Also contributing statements were Centre for Human Potential psychologist Paul Martin, and Sandy Miller – a lesbian Christian, who, along with her partner, will attend a dinner with Prime Minister Julia Gillard, paid for by GetUp! and Australian Marriage Equality AME) later this year.

“We want politicians to understand that marriage equality is not about ‘God versus the gays’, but about principles like justice and inclusion that have support across many faith communities”, AME spokesman, Malcolm McPherson said.

“We urge all Christians who support marriage equality to email their local MP.”

The group of Christian clergy join the Unitarians, Quakers and the Metropolitan Community Church in publicly supporting same-sex marriage in Australia, while Christians For Gay Marriage join an existing Jewish Community supporting Marriage Equality campaign.

The Rabbinic Council of Progressive Rabbis of Australia, Asia and New Zealand put their support for same-sex marriage on the record in June.

Check out the original article:

Check out the website here:

Chapter Leader
Joined in 2008
August 16, 2011, 02:43

Mmm – thanks, Ben, for this info.

Quite a diversity of the theological spectrum amongst the clergy mentioned. Including a couple of fine and exceedingly brave gentlemen with close connections to Freedom2b. Brave, because their boldness will (further) alienate them from some of their ministerial colleagues. And no doubt incur the wrath of certain denominational heavies. But, we know how Jesus handled the ‘religious heavies’ of His time !!! May true love win out over religious political correctness.

[BTW, the bottom link won’t work for me; but the top one does?? They look identical??]

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
August 16, 2011, 09:15

Hi Ben

Thanks for posting this article. I think this is very exciting news indeed. I like the ministers’ arguments and think they are well articulated. I don’t believe those who have spoken up on this issue will be as alienated as they once would have been… thankfully the tide is turning.


Ann Maree

Mr Summit
Chapter Leader
Joined in 2010
August 16, 2011, 22:13

Survey results released today reveal a majority of Christians finally support marriage equality:

Full survey info:

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
August 17, 2011, 18:32

Hi Mr Summit

Thank God that Christians are finally catching up with others who value equality and upholding of human rights.


Ann Maree

Joined in 2010
August 24, 2011, 15:35

Just an update on this…

I ws chatting with Rowland today, and both he and I have been bombarded with hate mail in the days since this article was pubished. Several LGBT publications around Australia have run the article, and several fundamentalist websites have picked up on this and begun their retaliation.

Rowland is getting most of the heat becasue of his chaplain role here. But all of us have been called Bible hating heretics amongst other things. People from my church are receiving emails and calls from these groups spreading all sorts of lies about what he have and haven’t said.

Of course, we expected something like this would happen. It makes me sad that all the hate is coming from Christians – I’m struggling to recognise them by their love!! But it has given me a greater appreication of what most of you have had to deal with ALL the time.

Anyway, if you get a chance, make sure you send a message to Rowland to encourage him. It’s going to be a rough few weeks for him I think!


Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
August 24, 2011, 20:30

Hi mrg

I’m really sorry you and Rowland are receiving hate mail and all for being as Jesus would be. Of course, Jesus was no stranger to strong opposition too as we know. And here I was thinking that people were maturing and becoming less ignorant.. sadly it appears there are some who are not.

Even if you expect this sort of retaliation, it doesn’t make it less hurtful or shocking, especially from those who claim to be loving and righteous.

It’s thanks to you, Rowland and other brave men and women taking a stand against homophobia that gives me hope however. I have a softer heart toward the church than I used to despite the element within it that hate us. That’s a miracle in and of itself given I was angry for many years! Thanks for everything you and Rowland do. It means more than I can express. 🙂

And yes, I’ll send Rowland a message now.


Ann Maree

Chapter Leader
Joined in 2008
August 25, 2011, 00:38

Ah, mrg (and Roland) [Will email both.]

I’m so sad to hear your report.

You would know (or know of) dear old Prof Brown (of pre-Whitley college days). As a child, I remember him saying (in respect to “certain Christians”) that they reminded him of the old saying:

” those who claim the most truth show the least grace “

Sadly, it’s so true. May you know God’s strength and peace as you pursue what you know to be right.

Joined in 2009
August 25, 2011, 21:51

We deeply appreciate what you men are doing and yes it does give you an idea of what we face all the time.

However it has come a considerable cost to you and thank you so much for doing it. I hope your church stands behind you.

At times like these I wonder if the Baptist Church is really all the far away from the Catholics and Anglicans in their system of church government. They claim they aren’t but……they have their ways and means.

I remember Prof Brown from ABMS (Gia) days.

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