Religious leaders from around the nation were nearly unanimous in their condemnation of President Obama’s announcement that he now supports gay marriage.
“It is very depressing news when the president of the United States uses his power of influence to endorse same-sex marriage,” Bryant Wright, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, told Baptist Press. “… Scripture is very clear that from the beginning, God intended marriage to be between one man and one woman. It is important for us who are followers of Jesus to uphold the sacredness of marriage according to Scripture.”
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued a statement saying Catholics could not “be silent in the face of words or actions that would undermine the institution of marriage.”
“The people of this country, especially our children, deserve better,” Dolan wrote in a statement, saying that he was “deeply saddened.”
Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, told Baptist Press he was “saddened” and “deeply disappointed” by Obama’s announcement. “No matter what culture may dictate with its ever-changing winds, I am grateful for the sure and unchanging source of authority we have in Scripture,” Page said. “We must hold to God’s Word on this and many other issues.”
Conservative advocacy groups were also unified in their condemnation.
“This shows that the Obama administration doesn’t understand the public purpose of marriage,” said Jim Campbell of the Alliance Defense Fund. “It’s not something that politicians should attempt to redefine for political purposes.”
Mat Staver, chairman of Liberty Counsel Action, said he was not surprised by the president’s move — and predicted it would elevate the importance of the 2012 presidential election.
“We are six months away from arguably the most critical national election in our lifetime,” Staver said. “America is headed in the wrong direction; we are on the edge of a moral, financial, spiritual and national security abyss.”