Advocacy Events - MCC Toronto invites marriage supporters
August 30, 2005
MCC Toronto invites marriage supporters
By Rev. Dr. Brent Hawkes
As you know, Bill C-38 came into law this year, extending equal access to marriage to all Canadians regardless of their sexual orientation. The Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto is proud to be the home of the first lawful same-sex marriages in the world [Anne & Elaine Vautour; Kevin Bourassa & Joe Varnell], which were celebrated on January 14, 2001. Our Church played a key role in this important law reform effort.
Despite its leadership role, the Church is very much aware that it was only one of many players in the social project that culminated in this new law. The complex and lengthy democratic process leading up to this important reform involved the efforts of religious groups, equality advocates and lawyers, among others.
The litigation process demonstrated the strength of our constitutional democracy, with its Charter of Rights and independent judiciary. The parliamentary response underlined for all Canadians that political leaders could respond to both the needs of a modern multicultural society and the requirements of the Charter. Canada can take pride in its human rights leadership in the world, the integrity of its democratic process and its ability to resolve difficult social questions in a civilized manner.
We have noticed that, despite this extraordinary process with its remarkable result, there has really been no opportunity for Canadians to mark this achievement. A major event each year in our Church is "Homecoming Sunday." We have decided to dedicate this year's event to acknowledge the passage of Bill C-38 and to all those who played a role in the social project that gave rise to this law.
An invitation to supporters of equal marriage
Please join us for one of our Homecoming services on Sunday, September 18, 2005 (9:00 am and 11:00 am) at 115 Simpson Avenue. You need not be a Christian or a member of any faith group to participate: all are welcome in our Church. Since seating is limited in the Church sanctuary, please RSVP to Susan Maddick if you plan to attend. If you cannot attend but wish to send greetings on this occasion, we would welcome such messages.
Thank you for the important role you played in this great democratic law reform process. Your contribution was very important on the journey to full equality, and we would be honoured to have you at either or both services. It would be our opportunity to say thank you to you. If you are able to attend, please RSVP to Susan Maddick @ 416-406-6228 x 107. We would appreciate hearing from you by September 14th. We will be having reserved seating, so please let us know how many people will be coming with you and to which service - all are welcome. You are also invited to join us in our Social Hall after the service, for coffee and a celebration cake.
If you are unable to attend, please know that we are very thankful for your support. You have been a part of changing history in a very meaningful way!
Dr. Brent Hawkes