UCC General Synod to host local pastor's same-sex marriage Sunday
Written by Connie Larkman June 28, 2013
Jay Greaves and the Rev. Dave Sigmund
The Stillspeaking God works in mysterious ways. The United Church of Christ is getting ready to host a wedding for one of its local pastors on Sunday, June 30, during General Synod 2013 in Long Beach, Calif. Just days after the United States Supreme Court returned Proposition 8 to the state of California, and minutes after the 9th District U.S. Court of Appeals lifted the hold on same-sex weddings, the Rev. Dave Sigmund, pastor of Seaside Community UCC, in Torrance, Calif., and his partner decided to "step out in faith" and legally tie the knot in front of God and everybody at the denomination's biennial gathering.
"We didn't want to wait," Sigmund said. "We want to live into this reality that our Stillspeaking God is creating in our midst."
Sigmund, ordained two years ago, and his partner, Jay Greaves, have been together 10 years. "We wanted to get married years ago, we've been together 10 years (as of May 31) and we said long ago once they lifted Prop 8 we would do this."
But, until now, they hadn't decided that ‘this' would be a wedding, "flash-mob style" on the second floor of the Long Beach Convention Center.
"Our community and our friends and family are surrounding us," Sigmund said. "And it's a statement of who we are as a church."
The nuptials will take place on Sunday afternoon, immediately following the UCC's 3 p.m. community worship service (around 5 p.m.). The Rev. Susannah Davis, pastor of the couple's ‘home church,' Kirkwood UCC in Atlanta, will co-officiate the service with the Rev. Mel White of Long Beach, a well-known minister and LGBT activist. The UCC's 2030 Clergy cocktail party at RockBottom Brewery Sunday night will serve as a reception.
"We have to take advantage of the situation," Greaves said. "We have 3,000 of our closest friends here."
The couple plans to honeymoon in Hawaii in September.