The following reflection was shared as part of  the Remembrance & Rally for No on Proposition 8yesterday evening at the State Capitol.

CA Faith for EqualityOn behalf of California Faith for Equality and its 6,000 faith leaders who are keeping the faith for marriage equality, I offer my thanks and appreciation for your dedication to ensuring equal access, for all couples, to the rights and responsibilities of civil marriage.

My own faith tradition teaches that all people are bound together as inseparable parts of God’s creation.  To this point, South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu reminds us, “My humanity is caught up, is inextricably bound up, in yours.”

Our interrelatedness has become intensely real for me these last few days.  Just over two weeks ago, my wife gave birth to our first child.  Our new baby is utterly dependent on her mother and the people around her.

Loving Eleanor

Loving Eleanor

Some of the very first people to hold her were the children of dear friends.  Imagine the tenderness of young children cautiously holding a newborn baby.  So much hope, so much possibility.  These children and their parents embody for me Jesus’ call to love thy neighbor.  They recognize how their lives are bound up with the life of our child and they reach out to her in love:  holding her, gifting favorite books, sharing special toys.

Held in Love @ 2 Days

Held in Love @ 2 Days

All of these children who held our daughter — Eli, Michael, Noah, John & Paloma — come from families with two moms.  Each parent loves and cares for her children as much as anyone can possibly imagine and they’re teaching their kids to care generously for others.   Eli, Michael, Noah, John, Paloma and all of the children of our friends and neighbors with same gender parents deserve to be assured the same safeties and protections that our newborn and family are granted by the State of California.

The movement for marriage equality is about more than abstract commitments to fairness and justice.  It’s too often oversimplified as us versus them, with violent repercussions.  The truth is…unfairness in marriage laws effects us all.

Our precious new baby belongs to a greater whole.  Her “humanity is diminished when others are treated as if they were less than who they are” (Archbishop Desmond Tutu).

I believe in the right and responsibility of people to form life-long committed relationships.  My belief is rooted in my understanding of God made known through Jesus.  Where there is love, the sacred is in our midst.  When two people love each other…it is in the interest of the entire community that the relationship be recognized by civil laws.

I believe that the fullest expression of God’s love dwells where two or more gather in the name of peace and justice and hope.  May God bless our gathering tonight and our work for marriage equality in the weeks and months and years ahead.  Diverse people of faith across this state will continue to stand together for equality for all Californians — no matter how long it takes.