President Richardson Celebrates Return of Marriage Equality to California

Same-sex relationships deserve ” blessing of the church and recognition of the state”


contact: Rebecca Wilson, 330-524-2067,

Berkeley, CA (Church Divinity School of the Pacific), June 26, 2013–The Very Rev. Mark Richardson, dean and president of the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, a seminary of the Episcopal Church, released the following statement on today’s U. S. Supreme Court’s rulings on the Defense of Marriage Act and the state of California’s constitutional provision banning same-sex marriage:

“As Episcopalians, we believe that same-sex couples who make a sacred commitment to love and be faithful to one another model the self-giving love of Jesus. These relationships deserve both the blessing of the church and the recognition of the state. We are heartened, therefore, that U. S. Supreme Court has opened the door for same-sex marriage to return to California.

“We recognize a diversity of religious perspectives on same-sex marriage, but we reject the notion that religious liberty is compromised by the civil recognition of the marriage of same-sex couples. Rather, we hold that our liberties are more fully realized when we extend to previously marginalized people the rights and privileges we claim for ourselves.

“The Court today has made it possible for same-sex couples and their families to participate more fully and securely in the lives of our communities, and our state will be better for it.”

Church Divinity School of the Pacific, a seminary of the Episcopal Church and a member of the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California, educates students in an ecumenical and interreligious context to develop leaders who can proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ to the world through traditional and emerging ministries. Learn more at