Monday, May 23, 2011

Unity, Not Uniformity

This last Sunday I officiated Angela and Kevin’s wedding in Fort Worth, Texas at the elegant Historic YWCA. Here are the personal words I shared with them and their guests:

There is an assumption on the part of some, and that some includes some members of the clergy unfortunately, that an interfaith relationship will serve to weaken, or even dilute the faith of an individual. What I have found regarding most couples, and Angela and Kevin stand out as a strong example of this, is that it is actually the opposite.

Falling in love with, developing a relationship with, and marrying someone who is of a different faith tradition, can actually strengthen one’s connection to his or her faith tradition. Kevin is very open about the fact that Angela’s commitment to her faith has inspired him to bring the Jewish faith back to a more central place in his life. Angela is explicit about the fact that her relationship with Kevin has served to perfect and mature her Christian faith.

Angela and Kevin find their respective connections to their faith traditions strengthened, because of one key concept. They both understand that unity does not have to mean uniformity. They understand that diversity is not a dirty word. They understand that they each can be strong in their differing beliefs, and also have a powerful and loving mutual bond.

Angela and Kevin, our prayer is that you continue to live a life of learning and growing together. Our hope is that you continue to strengthen each other. Our charge to you is that you inspire others to do the same.

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