Bishop Sean Rowe of the Diocese of Northwest Pennsylvania has a guest column this morning in the Erie Times-News on marriage equality. He writes:
Many of us remember when issues of human sexuality were off-limits for discussion in our congregations. And sadly, far too many of us are familiar with the discrimination, fear and violence that LGBT people have suffered while people of faith turned a blind eye or, worse yet, acted as perpetrators.
Today it is possible for us to view same-sex relationships differently. Across our communities, we see the goodness and holiness of same-sex couples in committed, lifelong relationships. Same-sex couples and their families are blessings to their communities, their churches, mosques, synagogues and temples, and to their neighbors and friends. Just like opposite-sex couples, their love for one another draws them more clearly into fidelity and service to the world and allows all of us who know them to see the boundless love of God more clearly.
We can also see that our civic life benefits when same-sex couples have the dignity and legal protection that opposite-sex couples have always enjoyed. Same-sex couples, just like their opposite-sex friends and neighbors, work hard, raise children, volunteer for good causes and pay taxes. Erie would be poorer without its LGBT residents, and we need to stand against discrimination that makes their lives less safe or secure.