Vestry Update

Last summer, 2018, two St. Mary’s parishioners of the same gender came to Rev. Beth Fain+ requesting the sacrament of marriage in their home parish.  After two months of conversation with parish leadership (Vestry, Ministry Council, and past Senior Wardens), at the October 2018 Vestry meeting the Vestry “unanimously affirmed support of St. Mary’s performing same gender marriage.  No formal request has been made to the Bishop because the Vestry understands the need for further, parish-wide discussion, study and preparation before a final decision is made.” Rev. Beth+ spent six weeks between that decision and her departure talking to parishioners who might have questions or concerns about same gender marriage at St. Mary’s.

As the 2019 Vestry reviewed where we were in the same gender marriage process, we realized that there was a need for more conversation and discussion.  Adult Christian Formation had six sessions in July led by Father Ray+.  Three weeks of conversation and discussion were held on Sunday mornings during Adult Christian Formation and repeat sessions on Tuesdays.  Attendance for the three Sunday morning sessions averaged 45 people.  The three Tuesday sessions attendance averaged 25.   However, it was apparent that some small group discussion/conversation needed to take place.  Deacon Russ scheduled four evening sessions in August, each one with 8-9 people in attendance.

The final step in the process for a church in The Diocese of Texas is to request permission from Bishop Doyle to offer the sacrament of marriage to all persons regardless of sexual orientation. On August 12, 2019 the Vestry of St. Mary’s voted unanimously to request this permission from Bishop Doyle. 

The Vestry will be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Cindy Angle, Senior Warden

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