Saturday, November 01, 2008

NO ON 8: Faith in Action, Call to Action

It was a beautiful day in the neighborhood ...

... as we gathered at St. John's Cathedral in downtown Los Angeles for the "Faith for Equality No on 8 Call to Action" event.
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Now, the No on Prop 8 sign outside the cathedral had sustained a little "collateral damage" -- as you can see from this photo -- as tension mounts, the election looms and vandalism of No on 8 sites escalate ...
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... but the volunteers from the No on 8 campaign and from the faith communities who gathered were "ready to rock and roll!"

And so with a NEW banner hung beneath the cathedral's awesome rose window ...

... 60+ clergy and faith leaders from all over the southland gathered in the parish hall -- with L.A. Bishop Assistant Sergio Carranza and St. John's Dean & Rector Mark Kowalewski ...

... for a multi-faith procession into a packed church to the drumming and singing of "Siyahamba: We Are Marching in the Light of God."


And for the next hour plus (Okay ... almost two hours!) we sang and prayed and shared together -- in the Light of God -- the joys of those who have come together to be married during this time of grace and inclusion as well as the fears and anxieties of the gathered community working to keep that right to marriage equality from being taken away by the unfair, discriminatory ballot initiative known as "Proposition 8."

"What is this event about?" the reporters asked me before the service began.

"It's about people of faith coming together across lines of denomination and tradition to urge a No on 8 vote on November 4th -- to fight the efforts to write discrimination into our constitution -- and to stand together committed to being a nation of liberty and justice for all -- not just some!"

I had many favorite moments in the service (and maybe we'll get pictures of that later) ... but among the most moving were the witnesses of these two folks ... a young married Mormon father-of-three and a young Muslim woman -- .

... both courageously standing against the "official" position of their faith traditions in witness to the love of a God who transcends dogma & doctrine, ideology and theology, identity and orientation.

Here are happy activists out on the plaza after the service, being equipped by the No on 8 volunteers to "pray with their feet" by signing up for visibility actions around the city and to volunteer to get the vote out on Election Day.



Here's Integrity Board Chaplain Randy Kimmler with fabulous friend Jean ...

Me with Canon James Blair White ... AKA Chair of the L.A. GC'09 Deputation ...

... Susan Craig and spouse Bear Ride (the second same-sex couple married at All Saints Church on June 17th) with Rabbi Lisa Edwards ...

... and Lutheran Bishop Dean Nelson getting equipped to pray with his feet ... and with rally signs! ... and help defeat Proposition 8 on November 4th!!

There was good press coverage ... we'll see what turns up on the news ... here's one of the reporters interviewing actress and All Saints parishioner, Amy Brenneman.

Finally -- in deference to the "other" election going on -- here's a candid shot of the-guy-many-of-us-wish-really-WAS-still-in-The-West-Wing ... President Josiah Bartlet (AKA Martin Sheen) ...

... chatting after the service with fellow participants. His heartfelt witness arose from the foundational values of his faith as a Roman Catholic peace activist and his presence with us was an inspiration and a blessing.

It was an amazing day of wonderful work and witness ... and before I sign off to go do ONE MORE WEDDING for the day (@ 7:00 p.m. Pacific ... I think it's either our fifth or sixth today!) ... let me just say one more thing (because they teach us to ALWAYS end on our talking point!)


4 comments:

Ann said...

Great pix- thanks.

Jeremiah Andrews said...

If Josiah Bartlet was still in the White House, where would he sit on the issue of Prop 8?

We had to write an essay about Pres Bartlet on the Capitol Punishment episode "Take this Sabbath Day" for my Christian Ethics/Theology class this term.

I hope all this good work does move mountains. Well done.

Jeremy In Montreal.

Neil Houghton said...

God bless you all for all your efforts on behalf of ALL of us across these United States... "with Liberty and Justice for ALL."

john said...

Susan, the story on the early news on Ch. 7 last night was quite good, I thought.

Not to tell you how to run your blog, but I think you should post the lead editorial from today's LA Times. It's a great counterpoint to the tissue of lies that was the "yes" crowd's full page ad.