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Religious Leaders Divided On MN Gay Marriage Amendment

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- More than 100 religious leaders Thursday launched an effort to defeat a proposed constitutional amendment in Minnesota to define marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
Minnesotans will vote on the amendment this November.

Singing a hymn, the pastors marched into a press conference sponsored by Minnesotans United for All Families, a group opposing the amendment.

"We're standing up for love -- everyone's love," said Grant Stevenson, the faith director for the group.

The coalitions say it represents more than 100 congregations.

It says it is telling church members the amendment is contrary to the Bible, and discriminatory, whether they approve of gay relationships or not.

"Our faith tradition says: love of God, love of one another, a love of neighbors and love of ourselves," said Bruce Robbins, Pastor of the Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church in Minneapolis. "There is no place in within these traditions for discrimination against people."

Just like secular Minnesota, there is division in the church community, too.

Minnesota Pastors for Marriage also uses the Bible, but as a reason to support the amendment. Its leader questions whether true Christians can believe otherwise.

"God's word is very clear about his design for marriage," said Pastor Jeff Evans of Christ Church Twin Cities in Edina. "When he designed that first marriage in the garden between Adam and Eve, it was very good and very loving of him to do so. And I really don't think we can be wiser than God."

This week, a public opinion survey from the North Carolina based Public Policy Polling found -- for the first time -- a majority of those polled oppose the amendment.

So far, however, every state that had a gay marriage ban on the ballot has passed it.

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