March 31, 2016
HB 1523 Press Release 033116 – In Light of Senate Passage
By The Rt. Rev. Brian R. Seage
I am profoundly disheartened by the Mississippi State Senate’s approval of HB 1523, which codifies discrimination against many Mississippi citizens.
I would respectfully encourage Governor Bryant to veto the bill, if it reaches his desk.
Our baptismal covenant requires that each of us will respect the dignity of every human being. It does not provide an exception to that respect.
The Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi stands as one with our brothers and sisters in the LGBT community and the Human Rights Campaign. We respect their painful journey as they have sought full inclusion in our society. Many of them share a Christian faith that is deep and profound. We should embrace their quest for equality and justice rather than placing obstacles in their pathway.
I am aware that some Christian bodies say this legislation is needed. I disagree. It addresses a conflict which does not exist. The Episcopal Church embraces all persons who seek to follow our Lord, and we honor all persons who yearn for equality in this society. Our doors remain open to all God’s children.