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First same-sex Jewish marriage takes place in Manchester

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  1. David McMillan 2 Jun 2011, 5:34pm

    Congratulations and best wishes.

  2. Great makes me happy. Maybe love will rule :)

    1. Jock S. Trap 3 Jun 2011, 9:16am

      I’d prefer Love to rule than religion.

      1. However, Jock – in this case the two men who loved each other also shared a religion – so I guess for those two men it was an important factor in celebrating their union – regardless whether others shared that view or not.

  3. Hope they are very happy – great to see this …

  4. And I am glad about this, Yes, when in the Second World War, Hitler slaughted many Jewish People, Homosexuals and Gypsies, My best friend was Jewish and he was Gay, I wish I could back those years and tell him that I was also Gay’ but I never did, Shame on me !!

    1. Staircase2 5 Jun 2011, 4:59pm

      Bless you
      The shame is not yours for feeling fear – the shame belongs to those people who set up and maintained the creed of fear and tyranny in the first place.
      You are making up for it right now – simply by standing up and being counted in your friends memory
      Bless you

  5. Jeffrey is a bit of alright too. Good for them.

  6. Even when the law is changed they will need an addtional CP registration which is to be completely secular. The law has not changed to allow religious services in a CP registration. Indeed it’s not clear whether having a CP registration in the church will actually mean that the ceremony will then be under the approved premises regulations and the ceremony could as a result be much more restrictive. Since their CP registration is outside the church and the ceremony completely seperate then they don’t fall under any regs, so they can do whatever they like at the moment. Whether the small churches have enough people to pay for the cost of setting up a church for a venue for CP is another thing, as well as the addional admin cost for the councils and ministers for doing this (assuming the reg change to allow minister to register a CP). What a complete waste of time this new change is going to be, they can’t even bother to wait for the change in the law and I don’t blame them.

    1. concerned resident of E3 2 Jun 2011, 7:28pm

      AFAIK Lord Alis amendment to the Equality Act (section 202) on civil partnerships became law in February of this year. This allows religious buildings to be used for the celebration of civil partnerships. As such, the liberal jews and the Quakers are the only two denominations wishing to celebrate gay relationships that also have the power to register civil partnerships.

      1. The consultation on all this end June 23rd, completion by the end of the yr , one of the gay org is being breifed tonight by the equalities office on what that means

        It’s still not possible to register your secular CP in quaker meeting house or any other religious premises at the moment and I suspect there is going to a very low take up of the whole thing…and as you said no other church org is going to give authority to their subordinate minsters and churches to do them as well..

      2. The Unitarians were a major part of the campaign for religious civil partnerships and we also want to do same-sex marriages. We have welcomed LGBT people since 1970 and welcomed LGBT ministers since 1977. Dudley Cave (a Unitarian) was also the founder member of the Lesbian and Gay Switchboard.

        It is unfortunate that the law which was passed in February has not yet been implemented. Unitarians are campaigning for that to happen.

        Pagans will also do same-sex weddings (handfastings) but opposite-sex Pagan weddings don’t have any legal standing anyway (a major piece of religious discrimination).

        1. Except the CP act still says “no religious service is to be used while the civil partnership registrar is officiating at the signing of a civil partnership document” and no details on the regs of approved premises for a CP venue at religious premises have been given yet…so religious CPs is not the correct phrase at all…Nor has the fee to the councils been decided. Quakers already do marriages, why the additional fee and admin for a CP venue when the liklihood is that only 1 or 2 people will take up this opportunity especially if ME is 3 yrs down the road.

          1. concerned resident E3 3 Jun 2011, 12:03pm

            as I understand it, once the legislation is fully amended Quaker registrars will be permittedto register civil partnerships and gaz marriages, if and when they come in

          2. Quakers aren’t trained to be CP registrars and a CP registrar is different to a minister who conducts a religious marriage. They abide to different rules and regs. The current reg on approved premises don’t allow ministers to be part of a CP…A CP registrar has to go thru a whole load of training , why would they bother to train up their ministers as CP registrars when the uptake will be next to zero. They haven’t got the same kind of money as the CofE and the Catholics. If we ever have marriage equality then Quakers will need to do nothing, they already do marriages . CPs ARE NOT the same, they come under a different set of regulations for approved premises as a CP venue!! The mix of putting a civil registration in a religious building is nonsense.

      3. But there is always an option for the CofE and Catholics to opt in and therefore, they will have say on how the regs for the approved premises will be set up ie very restrictice if they can help it

  7. Nice-looking couple! I wish them every happiness. It is a historic step in the march towards full equality.

  8. Shalom! And this gives me fond remembrances of all my Jewish friends past and present.

  9. Sam Maloney 2 Jun 2011, 8:11pm

    So why is it ‘marriage’ in the headline, instead of simply marriage?

    I can believe a right wing publication would make that distinction, that, but Pink News?

    1. Scare quotes!!!
      Never mind, they make a nice pair of bookends

    2. Because legally they are not married.

      Gay couples are barred from the legal contract of civil marriage because they are gay.

      This is indeed a ‘marriage’.

      Apartheid sucks

      1. Sam Maloney 3 Jun 2011, 5:40pm

        And now they are gone… guess the editors really do read the comments.

  10. They look so happy :)
    Best of luck to the both of them.

  11. Mazel tov! May they be very happy together.

  12. I wish for them a LIFE OF TOGETHERNESS – What God joined together, let no man put asunder!!!

  13. Mazel Tov! But what’s the quotation marks around the word marriage when it is a valid marriage under this religion’s beliefs? editors/ombudsman, please take note.

    1. A valid religious marriage is not legally a marriage if you are gay.

      Gay couples are not allowed to get legally married in the UK.

  14. Mozaltov :-) and most hearty congratulations to you :-)

  15. Rare to see a gay publication present an article positive on a religious aspect. Well done, PinkNews. God bless us.

  16. Jock S. Trap 3 Jun 2011, 9:15am

    This is absolutely Excellent.
    Congrats to Jeffrey and Rowan and Well done to Liberal Judaism for allowing this and pushing this issue.
    It’s just ashame they require an additional Civil Partnership which seems pointless.
    Just change the damn law already and let people celebrate their relationships.
    It’s good to see some in religion take on the Bigots in the Christians, Catholics etc.
    Now lets all watch the world Not cave in on itself

    1. concerned resident E3 3 Jun 2011, 10:33am

      NB the Quakers and Unitarians have been celebrating same sex weddings for many years now and have been atthe forefront of lobbying the government in favour of gay marriage. So not all ostensibly Christian denominations are that bad.

      1. Yes, that the point isn’t it, gay couples can already celebrate same sex weddings, there hasn’t been a legal restriction on this ever as far as I know, the only restirction being whether a minister/religioun etc is willing to do it . Gay couples can’t get legally married whether it be civil or religious. The new change in the law simply allows the registration of a non religious civil document in a church, nothing more. CPs are always civil, the law didn’t change that. Indeed now if you did a CP registration in the church then you will fall entirely in the reg attached to approved premises for a CP venue. That’s not the case if the venue is elsewhere and the same sex wedding remains in the church. I wish people would realise there a big distinction and the proposed change could potentially be more restrictive and costly to the tiny churches in admin etc for registering their church as a CP venue..the church simply become bound up by the same rules of an hotel or loc authority registrar

      2. Most of them are though.

        Most religions are hateful and bigotted.

        And all religion thrives on exclusion and division.

        Religion and religious belief has nothing of value to offer the world.

        1. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 1:17pm

          > religious belief has nothing of value to offer the world.
          Nothing? Not one thing? That is an extremist and bigoted position. Obviously these two men thought that their religious beliefs did have some value.

          1. Religious belief is very foolish and pitiable – particuiarly for anyonw who can read, write and think.

            People are free to believe what they like but religious belief is on a par with belief in Santa Claus.

        2. Clearly the two gentleman who have been married feel it has something of value to them – and I applaud them and congratulate them on their marriage.

          I personally don’t share their belief systems but I support them in being able to be two gay men celebrating their beliefs.

        3. “Most religions are hateful and bigotted.
          And all religion thrives on exclusion and division.”
          Surely you’ve contradicted yourself? If ‘most’ religions are hateful and bigotted that means that some of them are not. And if some of them are not then they can’t ‘all’ thrive on exclusion and division.

          Re Santa Claus argument and to provoke thought and discussion – Extract From ‘Debunking PseudoSkeptical Arguements of Paranormal Debunkers…by Winston Wu”
          …This ridiculous comparison tactic is notoriously common among pseudoskeptics, yet so severely flawed and ludicrous that you have to wonder about the sanity of the person using it. It basically lumps all paranormal phenomena in the same category as anything a skeptic makes up out of thin air. It is more of a belittling tactic than a reasoned argument. Even the respected Neurologist and Skeptic at Ontario University Michael Peringer uses it. Other similar variations of this are “ you cant prove to me that there wasn’t a dragon hiding in

        4. my garage either” and “you can’t prove to me that little green gremlins aren’t stealing pennies from my pockets either,” etc.

          The premise behind this argument is that if a claim is unprovable, then it’s in the same category as everything that is deliberately made up or fictionalised. However, not only is this false and a mere play on words, but it is a complete straw man argument because it falsely redefines the opposing position in terms that make it more easily attackable, using false comparisons. A simple examination reveals this:

          1) First, the main problem with this argument is that what people actually experience is NOT the same thing as what a skeptic deliberately makes up for the sake of argument! To put the two in the same category is both illogical and underhanded. Since the skeptic using this argument hasn’t really experienced invisible pink unicorns himself, everyone knows that he is deliberately making up something fictitious to put down something he doesn’t believe in while the paranormal experiencer or claimant is not. Regardless of whether what the claimant experienced was real or not, it is NOT in the same category as what a skeptic makes up out of thin air. Comparing them would be like comparing my real life experience of visiting a foreign country to any fictitious story you can find such as Peter Pan or The Wizard Of Oz. That simply makes no sense, even if misperception was involved on my part in my experience. Not only that, but it would be shady and underhanded as well.

          For the skeptic to claim that both are the same because they are unprovable would be like claiming that red cars and red apples are the same thing because they’re both red. Though even skeptics know that this is not true, as mentioned, they prefer their beliefs and word games over common sense reality. Alas, if these pseudoskeptics really lived according to their beliefs, then they could not function in society. For example, if they got lost and had to ask for directions, they would not believe any directions given to them, not even from the most credible and well-meaning long-time residents of the area they are lost in. they know this too, and thus this is all a word game to them, not a way to live in reality. So let’s just hope for their sake that they don’t carry their silly little theories over to real life…….

          2) Second, likewise what someone sincerely believes is NOT the same as what someone knowingly makes up. Since the skeptic who uses this argument doesn’t believe in invisible pink unicorns himself, it is pointless as well as inconsiderate to compare what people genuinely believe and experience, such as God, spirits, or ESP. of course, just because someone genuinely believes something doesn’t make it true, but to compare an honest person to a deliberate fraud is not a valid comparison.

          3) Third, if there were millions of credible intelligent adults out there claiming to have seen or experienced invisible pink unicorns or Santa Claus flying in the air, then this comparison would have merit. But there aren’t, so this comparison is without merit.

          4) Fourth, another significant difference between experiencing God, the divine, or the mystical, and the fictional example of invisible pink unicorns is that throughout history millions of honest, sane, intelligent people have experiences with the former which resulted in life changing effects, but the same can’t be said for invisible pink unicorns.

          5) Fifth, just because something is unprovable does not automatically put it in the same category as everything else that is unprovable. For example, I can’t prove what I ate last night for dinner or what I thought about. Without winessess, I can’t prove what I saw on TV or how high I scored in a video game either. But that doesn’t mean that these things are in the same category as every story in the fiction section of the library.

          The bottom line is that while it is true that no one can disprove the existence of invisible pink unicorns, the evidence to support God, spirits and psychic phenomena, although mostly anecdotal, is vastly greater, more significant, more relevant, and more sincere than the evidence to support invisible pink unicorns, Santa Claus, and other fictitious examples deliberately made up by sceptics.

      3. Jock S. Trap 4 Jun 2011, 9:46am

        Yes and thats good however it does nothing for those who wish to have a Civil marriage not a religious one.
        Though I take your point.

        1. Jock S. Trap 4 Jun 2011, 9:49am

          That comment was to Concerned Resident E3

  17. Congratulations.

    But just to point out 0- this couple is not married.

    Same sex couples are denied access to the legal contract of civil marriage because they are gay.

    This absurd scheme to allow CIVIL partnerships to be be held in religious buildings is merely a diversionary homophobic tactic to attempt to disguise the apartheid regime in operation against gay couples in Britain

    1. concerned resident E3 3 Jun 2011, 10:37am

      the reason the ban on religious involvement was included in the 2004 involvement was at the behest of the Church of England who had said if it was not included they would lead a campaign to defeat the legislation in the house of lords and in the country. The government at the time had little choice and it seemed then a small enough concession to get the bigger prize of civil partnerships in all other ways equal to straight marriage. But the intention has always been to remove this stricture once CPs were bedded in and that is what the coalition have said they will do

      1. Dear Concerned Resident of E3,
        I’m sorry to say you’re not correct in saying “the intention has always been to remove this stricture”
        Whilst Lynne Featherstone said last year that they would look at ways in which hymns, prayers etc could be allowed during a CP registration, it seems the Tories have overriden this & what they have ended up with, as stated in the Consultation Document, is that the ban on anything religious during the registration will remain.

        All that is proposed is that one can theoretisign the register in a religious building. But one will not do it as part of a religious ceremony or have any mention of God etc

        Furthermore, the amount of bureaucracy and cost both in time and money is likely to effectively deter any significant numbers of religius premises taking it up.

        Furthermre the big Churches have secured for themselves a pre-emptive veto on any member congregations doing this. Thus my local church will not be allowed to, because Lambeth Palace will not allow it

        1. concerned resident E3 3 Jun 2011, 12:12pm

          hmmm, that is not my understanding of the position for Quakers on this:

          1. Not convinced I met a quaker who was anti gay and rude

          2. Have you actually read the consultation document which is due to end on the 23rd June? Have you actually read what parts of the law have and haven’t changed? The equality act changed to allow religious premises to be used for registration on the approval of the head of the denominations, the CP act still restricts religious services in a CP registration, the approved premises regulations goes even further than both acts and really clobbers the whole process. Please have a look at them and the consultation document , nothing in that document gives any inclination on what is changing. The doc is geared towards the big churchs and councils only and not on what the LGBT gay religious community want.

          3. @ James…So that means that they all are does it? Your arguement is flawed. Your in danger of drawing a conclusion about a population or group based on a sample that is not large enough. You have not observed enough Quakers to warrant the conclusion that all Quakers are anti-gay. Your sample is too small to be representative.

    2. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 1:18pm

      > This absurd scheme to allow CIVIL partnerships to be be held in religious buildings is merely a diversionary homophobic tactic
      A homophobic tactic. And not just a homophobic tactic but a diversionary one. Another extremist conclusion.

      1. Explain to me please why all this time and energy is being spenf on allowing cult buildings to perform civil partnerships.

        When the number of LGBT people who wiould use them is very small.

        Gay people are not allowed to marry because they are gay.

        That is homophobic.

        Irrespective of whether a certain cult is wiling to perform a same sex ‘marriage’.

        A religious ‘wedding’ for a gay couple has no legal standing. That is the issue.

        1. ” …cult buildings”. Cult, mmm yes thats a very divisive and emotive word you’ve used there isnt it. I’ve read alot of material about cults, about their features and how they operate and I don’t think that every spiritual and religious thought system in the world can fairly or accurately be described or categorised as a cult. I would propose that the suppositions in your line of questioning and arguement are flawed because of appeal to emotion, appeal to fear, appeal to ridicule & and possible biased generalisation with your use of the word ‘cult’.

        2. Do I detect a note of bias and prejudice (perhaps understandable in some instances) on your part toward religion and religious people?

        3. Have you read “From Queer To Eternity: Spirituality In The Lives Of Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual People” by Peter Sweasey?

  18. Gay Daily Mail Reader 3 Jun 2011, 10:43am

    All the best to you two and happiness for the future. Right-wing groups such as the BNP and C18 bang on about ‘ZOG’, Zionist Organised Government where some Jews (<0.5% of the world's population) allegedly want to create a worldwide Jewish State, while some Muslims (20% of the world's population) want a global Islamic State under Sharia. Being gay I know which I prefer!

  19. Love won. It always does if we let it rule over our hearts. God is on side of love. Who cares about organised religion…but in this Really good news. Mazal tov!

    1. Leaving ‘god’ out of it, how can you claim that ‘loven won’?

      This couple are not legally married.

      Their sexual orientation means that they are denied access to the legal contract of civil marriage.

      Stories like this one are designed to hide the apartheid reality of marriage law in this country.

      1. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 1:23pm

        > Stories like this one are designed to hide the apartheid reality of marriage law
        So far, David has made three extreme and unhinged conclusions:
        First, religion has “nothing” to offer the world. Not one thing. Not music, nor art, nor comfort, nor community, nor charity. Nothing.
        Second, allowing CPs to be held in religious buildings is a homophobic diversionary tactic. That attributes deliberate bad faith to every person who welcomes this as an interim, stop-gap measure on the road to full marriage.
        Third, the reporting of this various story of itself is designed – note that word designed – to hide apartheid in the UK. The journalists reporting this and the two Jewish men publicising it are acting with bad faith and homophobic intentions.
        Such conclusions are at right-angles to reality and sacrifice the individual here-and-now to the selfish indulgence of philosophical purity.

        1. “allowing CPs to be held in religious buildings”..”every person who welcomes this as an interim, stop-gap measure on the road to full marriage”

          ……we have one liberal jew couple perform a wedding ceremony and the quaker s, who are by far the largest of the religious denominations who are in favour of SS ceremonies , with less than 5 ceremonies on their books since they agreed to them (I believe). If you can please be more specific or give a more accurate number on who in practice are welcoming this change then that would be extremely useful to the consultation process.. This is an entirely different issue to civil and religious marriage, and isn’t actually what I thought we were getting which was religious CPs. Secular CPs registered in Chruch aren’t related to marriages and are in no way a stop gay measure on the road to full marriage.

        2. Gay people are legally barred from the legal contract of civil marriage because they are gay.

          A separate legal status exists for same sex couples.

          If it looks, walks and talks like Apartheid.

          Then it is Apartheid.

          1. @David

            Accusing the UK situation on same sex marriage of being apartheid is to belittle the suffering, violence and murders that occurred under the Apertheid regimes.

            It is a scurrilous, inappropriate and insensitive use of a highly emotive word

        3. And allowing cults to perform CP#’s is a diversionary homophobic tactic.

          Instead of saying ‘Gay people are free to get married in the same manner as a straight couple’ what we are being told now is that because some minor cults like allow CP’s then we should regard this as progress.

          It is not progress. Religions are always free to discriminate – try getting a straight marriage in a catholic cult building if you’re divorced for example.

          I never said that the couple in question have homophobic intentions.

          It’s sad that they are being exploited for this non-story.

          They are not allowed to get legally married in the UK.

          That remains the story

          1. What about those gay people who want a religious wedding?

          2. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 6:16pm

            You engage in nothing but chanted condemnation and criticism, often from a markedly unlearned position. If you had been born in different circumstances, you could have been a religious preacher intoning against us.

      2. For me love is above law.So is God. Go figure.

  20. Why bother? Why can’t people just face the fact that the torah is homophobic (as well as being phobic about nearly everything else). Jahweh doesn’t like queers, or maybe he’s changed his mind? Either live by your belief or don’t. The sooner the world moves on from monotheism the better. The whole sad history of homophobia stems from monotheism.

    1. Galadriel1010 3 Jun 2011, 1:31pm

      Maybe because some of us don’t believe in the infallibility of our holy books like you seem to. Mine’s the bible, and I’m happy to call it a historical fantasy. Nice message and a bit of history, also monsters. I don’t believe every word I read in a newspaper, either, because I’ve heard of things like bias and miscommunication.

      1. Newspapers and fairy stories aren’t used to justify LGBT torture, imprisonment and murder – your bible is.

        1. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 6:18pm

          Many things are used to justify murder, religion is one of those. Religion, however, is not going to disappear. The UK may be very secular but most other countries are not. There is more benefit to be had in encouraging the development of more modern, liberal values in religion rather than merely wishing them not to exist.

          1. I agree, and I wish the happy (and very sexy) couple a wonderful life together, with or without Jahweh. I hope you don’t misunderstand my comment. It’s just that monotheism will disappear one day. Just like all other religions throughout history, it will pass. The mono god killed the Roman gods, the Greek gods, the Egyptian Gods, all the Pagan Gods. And one day another God/Gods will kill Jahweh. But my point is, if you believe in a god, believe in it, don’t pick what you want from that god. Your god either loves you or he doesn’t, and Judaism states very clearly that Jahweh doesn’t like queers. It’s not me who makes the rules, it’s the people who founded Judaism, the ones who wrote the torah. You can rewrite it all if you want to, but then it’s not Judaism anymore, it’s something else. I am not an atheist, but I don’t believe in anything that hates me. btw, does your pope think that Christ loves you de villiers? I say this as an ex catholic, who has spent too long studying theology.

          2. Galadriel1010 3 Jun 2011, 11:25pm

            As cynical as you surely are, Eddy, I’m sure you’ve realised that we will actually manage marriage equality before monotheistic religion dies out.

            And that it will probably be replaced with a different religious structure anyway.

            Revolutions, so named because they come around again.

        2. Galadriel1010 3 Jun 2011, 11:23pm

          Don’t be naiive, newspapers are often used to justify LGBT torture and discrimination.

          1. The newspapers quote your bible. It’s you who is being naive.

          2. Galadriel1010 6 Jun 2011, 8:39pm

            Oh riiight… If I’d known you hadn’t opened a newspaper recently I wouldn’t have bothered.

      2. I read Jackie Collins for moral guildance.

        Her books are far more relevant (and better written) that the piece of crap that the bible is.

        1. Galadriel1010 3 Jun 2011, 11:18pm

          That depends on what translation you get. The one I had was a fascinating and gripping read (until they got into the laws and stuff. Up to that point it was incest, murder and wars.)

          1. That’s Jackie Collins for you :)

        2. Have you actually read around or looked into Christian theology in any depth? Have you actually looked into the philosophy of ethics? I’m inclined to think not and therefore you are argueing from ignorance.

    2. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 6:04pm

      > Either live by your belief or don’t.

      Or adapt ones cultural practices to fit in with modernity – as one should do with all activities.

    3. de Villiers 3 Jun 2011, 6:14pm

      > Either live by your belief or don’t.
      Or adapt ones cultural practices to fit in with modernity – as one should do with all activities. We’re not robots or binary computers. It is too much to ask someone to discard their upbringing, their culture, part of their identity, their feelings and their beliefs – even if that were possible – purely on the basis of sexuality.
      In the public sphere, there should be a complete secularity – in schools, government, and the state. In private, people should have the freedom to enjoy the benefits of religion and culture. The watching of branches of the established religions accommodating single-sex partnerships can only be a positive development for the better.

      1. Galadriel1010 3 Jun 2011, 11:20pm

        I still feel that religious studies should be taught in schools because of the cultural misunderstandings that still stem from it. If we can understand each other in that respect, even if we happen to disagree with each other, then we can learn from each other and progess in peace.


        1. Jock S. Trap 5 Jun 2011, 12:10pm

          No way.
          How people are born far outweighs what adults want to force on their children with their religious agenda.
          You don’t chose life you chose religion and it should only be available for every child to read about and learn in their own time at their own choosing.

        2. Jock S. Trap 5 Jun 2011, 12:13pm

          Once you continue to have the right to preach in schools it gives an automatic right to preach hatred and it has not place in any school.
          You don’t need religion to be a good person, or to learn respect, or right from wrong.
          Peace can only prevail once all discriminatory teachings are removed.

        3. Galadriel1010 6 Jun 2011, 8:44pm

          I didn’t say that religion should be preached in schools, Jock. I just think that religious beliefs and practices should be taught. There is a big difference between “This is God, he created the world, somehow, Jesus came to save, etc” and “Christians believe that Jesus was sent by God to save people from their sins. Some christians believe this, but others believe this… Muslims, on the other hand, believe that Jesus was a prophet and so they believe this…”

          Faith isn’t something we choose either. Religion is moreso, because it’s an allegiance, but faith is a belief formed from evidence, gut feeling and, too often, indoctrination. Still not something we choose individually. You didn’t choose to believe that God doesn’t exist, you just believe that. I don’t choose to believe he does, any more than I choose to believe in the noisy child outside. The evidence is just there.


        4. Galadriel1010 6 Jun 2011, 8:53pm

          Because I was taught about Judaism and Islam and Sikhism and Hinduism in school, I can understand more about how they live because of their religion, I understand why Jewish people keep kosher even if I don’t understand the rules, I understood why my friends were fasting over Ramadan and why some chose to wear the veil, why people might dress differently or not do things on certain days. Tolerance and acceptance come through understanding, fear and distrust is bred through lack thereof.

          And at the same time, teach children about basic facts of life like safe sex practices, where different people can fall on the sexual and gender spectrum and how to tell if they or someone else is unwell enough to see a doctor without religous connotations.

  21. Galadriel1010 3 Jun 2011, 1:25pm

    Congratulations to them!

  22. John, I’m a bit confused by the link you kindly included in your post. Does this mean that marriage equality consultation begins this month? I thought it was July?

    1. The link from the Lesbian and Gay Foundation says

      “At the event the Government Equalities Office will present on the background to section 202, what section 202 actually means/allows us to do, what the consultation covers, the next steps on equal civil marriage and partnerships and some key issues for consideration.”

      I don’t think the actual consultation on equal civil marriage starts until July but it would be interesting to know what the equalities office said to LGF on this issue…perhaps PN might report something on what is happenning ?

    2. It will also be interesting if the homophobes in the Tory party put a stop to the equalities office even actually using the phrase “equal civil marriage”. Lord Tebbit seems to be on his homophobic guard already, here’s a gem of a question he asked at the end of May….the troops are rallying it seems!!!!

      “To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Wallace of Saltaire on 26 April (WA 23), whether they will refrain from using in answers to parliamentary questions expressions such as “equal civil marriage and partnerships” for which they have no definition.[HL8949]”

  23. “Mazel” to the happy couple – and “good on you” to the rabbi.
    Now, if only Rowan Williams would get out of the way, perhaps some day those quotation marks around “marriage” could be removed.

  24. Read, I agree. This is purely a civil matter. There is no component of religion in a civil marriage ceremony either. I’ve no doubt the Rowan Williams would object to marriage equality as his church controls who can and cannot have access to a civil marriage. He’ll use the worn out mantra about one man one woman nonsense and procreation of course knowing full well that a same-sex civil marriage wouldn’t compel denominations to officiate or recognise them. Even if denominations will be allowed to support civil partnerships at their own choosing, Williams and his ilk will still kow-tow to the bigotry within his church and oppose it.

  25. I meant to have said Williams thinks his church controls civil marriage… .

    1. Jock S. Trap 5 Jun 2011, 12:17pm

      Agreed and he’ll/they’ll stop at nothing to try and stop us getting Marriage Equality.
      Their bigotry will fail them.

  26. Piper Peter 3 Jun 2011, 5:22pm

    Congratulations may you both be very happy.!

  27. !מזל טוב

    Good luck to them :) I’m not a religious person myself, but if it works for other people then I say definitely go for it! It’s good to see that progressive forms of Judaism and Christianity are pushing for gay marriage.

  28. Mark Solomon 5 Jun 2011, 3:18pm

    I’m the rabbi who conducted the ceremony, and edited the booklet from which the liturgy was drawn, published 6 years ago by Liberal Judaism to coincide with the introduction of Civil Partnerships. A couple of points in response to the discussion so far: Firstly, people express strong feelings about “faith” and it benefits or harms – mainly harms on this website. The word faith, however, is of limited relevance when discussing a Jewish wedding like to the one I performed last week. Judaism does indeed have a faith in One God, but a faith that has changed and evolved in myriad ways since the Bible was written. My concept of God – the dynamic force within the totality of existence – might not be recognisable to Moses, but is one that results from centuries of Jewish (and other) discussion, reflection and religious experience. I know that Jeffrey and Roman do have faith in God, whether or not precisely the same as mine. (continued)

  29. Mark Solomon 5 Jun 2011, 3:26pm

    More importantly, however, Judaism is a historic culture, heritage and way of life that is cherished by a community, and to get married with the traditional ceremonies – canopy, rabbi, rings, wine, blessings and breaking a glass (two glasses in J&R’s case) – has a profound emotional and spiritual impact that is quite separate from civil registration.
    It would be wonderful if we could have full legal same-sex marriage, and I believe it will happen eventually. In the meantime, when the law allowing civil partnership in religious premises is implemented, it should be possible to have a full religious wedding either preceded or followed by the formality of the signing of CP documents – no “civil ceremony” should be necessary except possibly some form of dialogue ensuring that the couple are free to enter into a CP. Once that happens it will be a relatively short step to full religious marriage ceremonies.

    1. The only difference the new registration of secualr CPs in the “church” will be is that you won’t have to get in your car from the registry office to the religious premises. You will , however, need to bing along the CP registrar though since the minister won’t be able to do it and in any case would it be worth training ministers up to do such a small number of CPs. The biggest step to full religious marriage is first to get civil marriage and at the same time to have internal discussions within your own religion to accept gays are couples and allow them to get married. Religious marriage ceremonies is first up to the relgion, the power is firstly in your hands but without the law changing to allow marriage for all then I don’t believe that the simple registration of CPs on religious premises will have little affect on full religious marriage.

    2. Galadriel1010 6 Jun 2011, 8:58pm

      Thank you for joining this discussion with us.

      I’m very pleased to see the steps forwards you are taking to allow couples like Jeffrey and Roman to share their love with their God. The dialogue regarding gay marriage from both sides too often shuts out those of us who are caught in the middle and pushes us away from both the communities we are part of.

      I hope you’re right, and that it will be a short step from here to full equality. I hate knowing that my religion closes the door to anyone.

      1. I think the proposal for CP registration on religious premises is a step backwards. At the moment the ceremony is entirely up to the minister, once the CP is allowed to be registered in the “church”, the content of the ceremony is decided between the registrar and the minister. It is very unlikely that that the minister will be allowed to mimick the marriage ceremony as is the case if the CP registration happenned elsewhere and the ceremony takes place afterwards. The approved premises reg will probably apply to all relgiions and therefore will have to be generic and not very complicated. The marriage act has sub sections for different religions outliing what is allowable in general terms and for each religion, the CP reg/act does not have this. It’s a simply set of regs at the moment. I’m afraid this change will not succeed, be not want was intended and will have very little take up it does happen.

        1. Galadriel1010 7 Jun 2011, 12:09pm

          I think what you’re missing is the fact that the content is decided between the registrar, the minister and the couple. If the couple want religious wording in their ceremony and the minister complies (if they didn’t, I guess the couple wouldn’t be using them), then any attempt by the registrar to block religious wording in the ceremony would be restricting their freedom of religious expression and would be discriminatory.

          1. I think the point is that no-one knows how the regulations for approved premises is going to be worded. At the moment if the Rabbi wants to perform a “wedding” that mimicks a straight one then he can do so without falling under those regs, I believe. Once his “church” is classed as a CP venue, then they come under the CP regs which have not been outlined..the consultation hasn’t done this. The consultation already, I believe, says it can use hymn, religious reading etc but as far as I know it doesn’t allow you to mimick a marriage, the minister is not allowed to do the registration..The reg will apply to all churches regardless of whether they op in or not so they have to be pretty generic to possibly suit all..

          2. If there is a complete free for all then why is the registrar even involved in deciding the content of what goes into the ceremony. If the church doesn’t become a CP venue then the content of the ceremony would always have been between the couple and minister onlY!!!!! Why on earth is the registrar getting involved in the content!!!!!

        2. Jock S. Trap 8 Jun 2011, 2:10pm

          It’s all about choice.
          It is a positive step forward and one I hope goes a long way into showing the world doesn’t implode at the mere thought and evolves into marriage Equality.

          1. Even if it was a step forwards it is finanically going to be impossible for a faith group to take up. Quakers, for instance, have about 17,000 members and so throughout the whole Society they could not expect to be asked to conduct more than a very occasional CP. These would naturally be split between their approx. 400 Meetings Houses. It would be wholly uneconomic for each Meeting House to have to pay the projected ₤1,500 annual fee in the knowledge that they might host a CP registration “once in a blue moon”. Think about it, the cost involved prevents anybody taking the thing up.

  30. Zaramart-kippot 6 Jun 2011, 7:05am

    we proclaim the brotherhood of Muslims, Jews, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists and atheists, all who believe and pray, and all who don’t believe and don’t pray.

  31. jckfmsincty 8 Jun 2011, 5:09am

    They should move to LA which has a large, gay Jewish population.

  32. I’m not sure how many “churches” the lib Jews have but the proposed legal change seems that each place must be registered with the council as a CP venue. The proposed fee is around 1500 .Again I’m not sure how many SS marriage ceremonies they have done up to now but unless the number is significant it is not financially feasible for each place to register as a CP venue. In comparison the county council have around say 4 registrars to cover the whole county and they perform both CPs and civil marriages. That’s makes perfect financial sense. I also don’t understand where the CP registrar is going to come from and at what cost. I also don’t understand the phrase in the consultation document which states that the religious services will be on the agreement of the registrar, minister and couple. In what way can the registrar or new regs veto anything in the ceremony. CP registration in lib Jew “churches” has nothing to do with furthering relgious CPs/marrigaes and is too costly/cumbersome.

    1. Bisexual woman in Edinburgh 15 Apr 2012, 1:09am

      No Jews have churches. The word is synagogues.

  33. They are not ‘legally ‘ married. the headline is almost as misleading as the ‘Gay Finches’ nonsense!

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