Tuesday, May 26, 2009

People of faith respond to Prop. 8 ruling in San Francisco

Early this morning anxious LGBT people and friends gathered for an interfaith service at St. Francis Lutheran Church adjacent to the Castro neighborhood.

From the church, several hundred people marched down Market Street with a police escort. They arrived in front of the Old State building in Civic Center not long before 10:00 am when the decision upholding Prop. 8 was released.

There were many in the march who might be known to Integrity members and friends.

The Rt. Rev. Otis Charles and his partner Felipe Paris strode along. They were legally married last October; those 18,000 pre-election marriages were upheld today despite the court's affirmation of Prop. 8.

After the decision came down, many folks moved into the intersection of Van Ness and Grove streets. A lesbian friend who works in City Hall for the traffic commission pointed out approvingly: "That's good. They blocked the state route, not one of ours." Fr. Richard Smith, above, assists at the Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist.

The 100 or so people who chose to stay and be arrested risked dehydration and sunburn. Here the Rev. Anthony Turney, Archdeacon at Grace Cathedral.

Finally the police moved in, removed and cited the protesters. At the center of this cluster are Brother Karekin Yarian, BSG, and Thomas Jackson of Oasis California.

As Integrity President Susan Russell said today: this was "a decision that should not and will not stand."

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