Same-Sex Marriage Follow-Up from Ministry Council

The Deacons’ conclusion that Highland should begin allowing marriage for our same-sex couples and that, for moral and spiritual reasons, the matter should not be brought to the congregation for a vote, has stirred many heart-felt conversations in recent weeks.

Our congregation has grappled with issues related to the process, timing, and Biblical basis for the decision. Many good questions have been raised.

In the interest of providing as much information as possible, several resources are now on our website (, including a “fact sheet” that was developed in response to media requests immediately following the announcement in our May 27 church newsletter. In addition, the site includes Joe’s columns and sermons on the topic, along with the deacon subgroup report. Please examine these documents to ensure that you have a full accounting of the facts and rationale.

All are encouraged to continue to dialogue, ask questions, and share your concerns. The Ministry Council will review the process used to discuss and present the same-sex marriage issue and will recommend any revisions to our processes.

Please feel free to share your thoughts with me or any other member of the Ministry Council: Kathy Belcher (Chair), Peter Raymond (Vice Chair), Jason Baker, Mary Burks, Ryan Davis, Ryan Eller, Kate Holm, Janet Whiteley, Kathey Golightly Sanders, Walter McWhorter, and ministry staff.