Thursday, September 3, 2009

Thousands of Religious Leaders Endorse Religious Declaration on Sex

via VirtueOnline

Some 263 Episcopal clergy including 20 Episcopal bishops have signed a declaration on sexual morality, justice and healing. More than 3,500 religious leaders from more than 50 religious traditions have endorsed the Religious Declaration, including clergy; professional religious educators and counselors; denominational and interfaith leaders; and seminary presidents, deans and faculty members.

The signers argue that sexuality is God's life-giving and life-fulfilling gift. "We come from diverse religious communities to recognize sexuality as central to our humanity and as integral to our spirituality. We are speaking out against the pain, brokenness, oppression, and loss of meaning that many experience about their sexuality.

"Our faith traditions celebrate the goodness of creation, including our bodies and our sexuality. We sin when this sacred gift is abused or exploited. However, the great promise of our traditions is love, healing, and restored relationships.

"Our culture needs a sexual ethic focused on personal relationships and social justice rather than particular sexual acts. All persons have the right and responsibility to lead sexual lives that express love, justice, mutuality, commitment, consent, and pleasure. Grounded in respect for the body and for the vulnerability that intimacy brings, this ethic fosters physical, emotional, and spiritual health. It accepts no double standards and applies to all persons, without regard to sex, gender, color, age, bodily condition, marital status, or sexual orientation.

"God hears the cries of those who suffer from the failure of religious communities to address sexuality. We are called today to see, hear, and respond to the suffering caused by violence against women and sexual minorities, the HIV pandemic, unsustainable population growth and over-consumption, and the commercial exploitation of sexuality."

The "M" word - marriage was not mentioned in the declaration. None of the Episcopal signers were orthodox in faith and morals. All of the signers agree and or support Resolutions D025 and C056. No mention was made of abstinence before marriage and faithfulness within marriage.

Read more, and check out the list of Episcopalian endorsers.

Check out the full list on the Religious Institute site.

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