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A Look at Gay Marriage Views in the Black Churchy

Joel Tinsley-Hall, a gay black American, and Scott Tinsley-Hall, a gay white American, both grew up in conservative Christian families and church communities. The now-married couple worship at The Open Church in Baltimore, whose pastor, the Rev. Brad Braxton, a black American, is a proponent of gay marriage. Nearby Hope Christian Church’s bishop, Harry Jackson, also a black American, strongly opposes gay marriage. In a 6 1/2-minute news video prepared for Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly, a source for cutting-edge religion reporting and analysis, contributing correspondent Betty Rollin explores the gay marriage debate within the American black church. In a separate 10-minute video clip, Braxton expands on the reasons he supports gay marriage and what his endorsement means theologically, for his ministry, for the church he serves and for society at large. Separately, the African American Lectionary Project, a lectionary-based resource for historically black churches, solicited a broad range of perspectives on sexuality from respected black theologians, clergy and seminarians, and published the resulting papers in its Dialogue Corner. For more perspectives on the same-sex marriage debate within the black church, access the project’s archives. 

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