It has happened again. Mass shootings like the one today at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg happen too often and Oregon has not been immune. Today we offer our prayers for those killed and injured. Still, we must also work to take steps that reduce gun violence this day so that there are no more days like this.
I am a 42-year-old wife, mother and local church pastor living with breast cancer. Actually, Jesus said it first. And the great Jewish prophets said it many times before him. But Marques Bovre, a Wisconsin-based singer/songwriter/theologian, had this amazing ability to bring Jesus' words to life through music and poetry.
The story of the church and LGBT rights is also my story. I first came back to church as a gay, recovering alcoholic. The church taught me that I was beautifully and wonderfully made; and that to love myself and care for myself was a form of gratitude to my Creator. Years later, after I had been with my partner for 11 years, I was married in the Episcopal church we now attend, and It was one of the most moving events of my life.
Tonight after watching President Obama's State of the Union Address and speaking today with White House officials about the proposals the president is making, I can report without hesitation that the president has put forward a domestic agenda people of faith concerned about families, poverty and education can support.
The recent appearance of pastors and churches declaring their willingness to perform marriages for same-sex couples has led to some of the most amazing imagery of the marriage equality struggle. Imagery the likes of which seemed all too impossible not long ago, especially in the deeply-red states of America.