Same-sex couples officially included in Reformation Lutheran Church wedding policy

Published: Nov. 20, 2014 at 2:52 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2014 at 3:06 AM EST
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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - In support of its longstanding commitment of inclusiveness, Reformation Lutheran Church has revised its wedding policy to include same-sex couples who want to marry.

The move comes as a result of the new federal court ruling that eliminates the ban on same-gender couples becoming legally married in our state.

"The decision to lift the ban on same-gender marriages in our state is long overdue," said Tim Bupp, pastor of Reformation Lutheran Church. "It's a move in the right direction and supports our congregation's commitment to all of God's children."

Bupp, who was named pastor in 2013, has been performing wedding ceremonies out-of-state where same-sex marriages are recognized.

"When we now say 'all are welcome', we mean it in every aspect and it feels great," said Julia Prater, president of Reformation's Church Council.

Prater said that the revised policy is aligned with the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America's (ELCA) church-wide policy, adopted in 2009, which states that a Pastor may preside over a same-sex marriage where it is not prohibited by civil law.

The ELCA policy essentially gives permission and does not prohibit same-gender marriages where they are legal, which leaves the choice to individual pastors and their congregations to decide how to implement.

Reformation Lutheran Church is located at 1118 Union Street in Columbia.

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