A lone voice for same sex marriage

April 12, 2012 by Henry Benjamin
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Steve Denenberg, the executive director of the Union for Progressive Judaism was a lone voice among the Judeo-Christian leaders being quizzed by a parliamentary group on same sex marriage.

Steve Denenberg

The committee conducting the enquiry is currently travelling around Australia questioning religious leaders and other groups before returning to Canberra where the Federal Government is expected to deal with a motion calling for the introduction of same sex marriage.

The Canberra-based politicians held their Sydney enquiry today in the NSW State Parliament. Denenberg told J-wire that religious groups represented included Sikhs, Hindus, Catholics, the Salvation Army, Seventh Day Adventists, Anglicans, the Lutherans and a Buddhist monk.

The committee asked the delegates present about their biblical or religious position on the possible legislation. Denenberg said that most delegates said it was forbidden by their respective religions.

He added: “I was able to say that based on our beliefs that each person is created in the image of God, the way that person expresses his or her sexuality each person is equal.  Therefore, their rights for full participation in society should be equal, including the right to marry. Equality would dictate that same gender couples should be able to marry.”

Denenberg told J-Wire that the issue was voted on by the UPJ two years ago favouring same sex-marriage adding “we have had policy on our books for quite some time supportive of marriage equality”.

Commenting on the outcome, Denenberg said that the Buddhist monk was positive although there was no policy in place within his religion but “all the others said their religions were unequivocally against it”.

The orthodox community has made a submission against same sex marriage but did not attend the enquiry to which they had been invited




5 Responses to “A lone voice for same sex marriage”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    Has the UPJ asked any member of the GLBT community why he/she/either demands that a formalised union msut be called “marriage”? Marriage, after all, in all societies has been a specific term for the union of a man and a woman with all of its ramifications regarding exclusivity, support, property and child rearing. Now GLBT activists want to coerce tolerant societies to regard their relationships as equal to the ones on which human societies are based. Why? Is there an element of doubt about their relationships that they want to alter by word magic? Are they trying to validate their life styles by compelling those who value marriage to accept non-traditional relationships as equal and as desirable as those which produced those activists? And why is the UPJ involved in pressure politics instead of counselling its GLBT constituency to simply accept another term for their relationships? How on earth can a movement that is becoming more kosher and building a mikvah reconcile its open contempt for a biblical injunction?

    • Lynne Newington says:

      Paul, I wonder if I may share part of a comment by Ben Gresham from Eureka Street Website. Ben, [from the film of the same name] doesn’t mention marriage or where he stands with that, but still connected.
      He states,’I didn’t find fulfillment in my homosexuality, I found fulfullment in living an honest life with integrity and faith as a gay man.
      My sexual orientation is just another part of me”.
      I’m sure there are hundreds doing the same, whether seeking to change the laws or not.
      Thanks for taking the time to read it.

    • Harry Joachim says:

      Reform is building a mikvah?! Where? What on earth for? Do they now believe in the laws of family purity? If so, you are certainly correct Paul in contrasting this with the movement’s stance on gay marriage…

  2. Harry Joachim says:

    Yes, Michael, overwhelmingly AGAINST 3300+ years of Jewish tradition. The UPJ may support it, but the Torah forbids it, so it is simply incorrect for them to base their views on “Judaism”…

  3. This support from the Progressive community is overwhelming. Thank you.

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