Religious Support for Marriage Equality Marches Forward

The legal argument against marriage equality is being upended by the numerous Christian and Jewish bodies that support LGBT rights.



Above: Father Shannon Kearns, who is transgender, is pastor of the House of the Transfiguration, an Old Catholic congregation in Minneapolis.

Old Catholic and Independent Catholic churches
Despite Pope Francis’s conciliatory attitude toward LGBT people, the Roman Catholic Church has not given up its opposition to same-sex marriage or its expectation that faithful members will resist any urge to have gay sex. However, there are several denominations that consider themselves Catholic (with a capital C; most churches consider themselves small-c catholic, as in universal) but are not affiliated with Rome, and they are often LGBT-welcoming. Usually known as Old Catholic or Independent Catholic churches, they have their roots in a group of European churches that split with the Vatican in the 19th century. They offer a Catholic style of worship, sometimes with elements drawn from other traditions, but are not under the Vatican’s authority, and they affirm the equality of LGBT people and women. Read more about them here.