GOSHEN — Same-sex weddings are on hold in Indiana pending an appeal by the state of a federal judge’s ruling allowing them. While the court ruling is a legal issue, local churches are dealing with the moral issue of allowing same sex marriages.
In one Goshen Baptist congregation opposition is theologically absolute. They won’t allow homosexual unions to be performed there.
“We are an independent Baptist church and in my personal opinion, I believe the Bible is pretty clear on marriage,” said the Rev. Gregg Lanzen of First Baptist Church. “Do you believe the Bible or do you not believe the Bible? What does the Bible say on marriage? Look at Genesis 1 and 2 where God created Adam and Eve. God created marriage between a man and a woman. That is taught throughout the Scriptures and I believe that to be true.”
The pastor said if a same-sex couple chooses that lifestyle, that is their choice.
“They don’t have to answer to me. I wouldn’t agree with the lifestyle, but we can still be friends,” he said. “This Baptist church will not do gay weddings because we stay true to the Bible. There would have to be a constitutional amendment or something for that to change here ... that’s not what’s important though. The most important is the individual and their relationship with God. Marriage is for men and women. How will the legal system affect churches? Time will tell, whatever happens is OK. God’s in control!”
There were similar sentiments shared by the Rev. Ed Fritz at Goshen First United Methodist Church.
“Our denomination sees all persons regardless of any situations of life with their sacred value and significance to God and to Christ’s church,” Fritz said “That is unacceptable with Scripture (homosexuality) and we do not condone and will not perform same-sex marriages.”