Ellin Jimmerson is the Minister to the Community at Huntsville’s Weatherly Heights Baptist Church. On Monday, however, she will take on a historic role as the officiant of the first same-sex marriage ceremony in Huntsville.
Rev. Jimmerson will be speaking and officiating at Huntsville’s Wedding Week on Monday, the first day same-sex couples around the state will be allowed to obtain marriage licenses. She’s excited about the opportunity and chance to spread her message of love.
“One of the issues for many is whether same sex marriages comport with biblical ideas of marriages. The truth is that people in the 21st century would not be comfortable with the kinds of marriages which are represented in the Bible. For example, we would not be comfortable with the biblical model that is one man, one woman, one concubine. Nor would we be comfortable with the idea of a widow being compelled to marry her brother-in-law. There is very little in the Bible which reflects the modern idea of one man & one woman united by love. That is where we have been comfortable for a long time now.
Today, we are being asked to move even further down the road of marriages being based on love. We are being asked to expand our ideas to include one man and another man united in marriage by love. Of one woman and another woman united by love.
It was not too many years ago that we in Alabama at last understood that the long-held ban on interracial marriages was hurtful and wrong. We moved further down the road of love. Now, most of us think nothing of interracial marriages.
On Monday, Feb. 9, the state of Alabama will move as a people even further down the road of love as the only legitimate basis for marriage. We as a people will recognize that God truly does love us all.
However, in the spirit of Governor Wallace standing in the school house door, the probate judges in Madison and surrounding counties have announced they no longer will perform any marriage ceremonies.
This means that same sex couples, many of whom have no pastor because they have not been welcome in their own churches, would have had nowhere to turn had it not been for the good people who have organized “Wedding Week”.
During the week of Feb. 9, a number of ministers have volunteered to officiate at marriage ceremonies for whoever needs one. There has been a wonderful show of support for couples, many of whom have waited years or even decades to have their relationship solemnized by way of license and ceremony, from people offering wedding gowns, cupcakes, bubbles, and photography. So many people want to celebrate with people who have waited too long.
I have been invited to officiate at the first ceremony and to offer a short inspirational homily to those gathered in downtown Huntsville Monday morning. I am deeply touched by the invitation and have agreed enthusiastically.
I want to invite everyone who will to celebrate with the couples who have waited so long for this day.
To God be the glory!”