Which Churches Allow Gay Marriage?

I'm commonly asked why so few same-sex marriages occur in places of worship rather than simply at the reception site.  The answer is easy - not many religions accept same-sex marriage.  Here's the rundown for you in case you are asked by a couple.  On many occasions, I've had to call around to local churches and specifically ask, "do you allow gay marriages to be held in your church?"  It leads some pretty awkward conversations so hopefully this guide will help:

Faiths Allowing Same-Sex Marriages
  • United Church of Christ: The United Church of Christ was the first mainstream Christian church to fully support same-sex marriage and perform marriage ceremonies. 
  • Jewish: Reform Judaism embraces same-sex marriage and rabbis can perform ceremonies.  Some conservative and re-constructionist synagogues do as well.
  • Quaker: The willingness to perform gay marriages varies by meetinghouse, but there is some acceptance and performance of same-sex marriages among Quakers. 
  • Metropolitan Community Church
  • Unitarian Universalist
  • Unity Church

Faiths Allowing Limited Same-Sex Marriage
  • Episcopal: In the Episcopal Church, priests are authorized to bless same-sex wedding ceremonies but not declare the marriage official or sign the marriage license. Certain dioceses can perform full marriage ceremonies.
  • Lutheran: Lutheran churches can decide, on a church-by-church basis, whether or not to perform same-sex marriage.
Faiths Disallowing Same-Sex Marriages 
  • Baptists: Southern Baptist and Conservative Baptist churches will not conduct same-sex marriages, nor will they allow them to be held in their churches. Some American Baptist churches are open and inclusive. 
  • Methodist
  • Catholic
  • Presbyterian (some will bless ceremonies)
In addition, I do not know of any Eastern religions which sanction gay marriage and perform same-sex marriage ceremonies.

Have you seen many gay weddings occur in churches?

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Dee commented on 20-Aug-2011 04:33 PM
Actually, a Lutheran Pastor will be conducting our wedding. We have opted not to have it at the church but could have if we wanted to.
AEC commented on 09-Oct-2012 02:51 PM
It's a shame the churches that won't marry consenting adults in a gay union aren't fighting harder under the Freedom of Religion banner. After all, ALL of the marriages between consenting adults performed by SOME churches are being recognized by the States, but only SOME of the marriages performed by other churches are being recognized. There is no compelling reason for that.

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