Friendly Voices – Dennis & Christine Wiley

“A final piece that shapes black attitudes toward same-sex marriage is the preoccupation with racism in the black community. This obsession, although justifiable, has led to a failure to appreciate how racism is inextricably connected to all other forms of oppression. Those who fail to see this connection may resent the comparison of gay rights with civil rights. But as Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

“Last week, two black D.C. Council members voted against the same-sex marriage bill. But five black council members voted for it. Our black mayor signed it on Friday, and our black congressional representative has promised to defend it on Capitol Hill. Although the bill faces the possibility of intervention by Congress, something revolutionary is happening in this city to debunk the notion that the black community’s homophobia is entrenched.

“Many new members are joining the church, excited by our vision. The couple for whom we performed the first union ceremony at our church are still together and doing well. And the man who aspired to the ministry was ordained a few weeks ago and is now a chaplain supervisor at a local hospital. Some who disagree with us have condemned us to hell. But we believe that God has granted us the courage of our convictions.” – Pastors Dennis and Christine Wiley, in a lengthy Washington Post editorial explaining why their black DC church supports marriage equality.