Illinois same-sex marriage vote may be near

Meredith Flynn —  November 1, 2013

NEWS | Lisa Sergent

Contrary to what we were hearing last week, the Illinois House may vote on the same-sex marriage bill next week. Recent news reports suggest the same-sex marriage bill, officially known as SB 10 or the “Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act,” will be called for a floor vote in the Illinois House of Representatives during the final week of the fall veto session, which begins November 5.

Rep. Greg Harris (D-Chicago), the bill’s main sponsor, told the Illinois Observer this week, “I think my colleagues should be prepared next week to make history on marriage equality.”

Southern Baptists in Illinois will meet November 13-14 in Springfield for the IBSA Annual Meeting and messengers will vote on a resolution affirming biblical marriage and religious liberty. “In just a few days, messengers from hundreds of churches representing more than 200,000 church members will gather in Springfield and vote on a strongly worded resolution supporting the ‘Preservation of Biblical Marriage and Affirmation of Religious Liberty of Illinois Churches and Faith-based Organizations,’” said Nate Adams, IBSA Executive Director.

“I hope Illinois legislators will hear and heed the voices of these concerned church members and citizens, and resist the pressures to redefine marriage here in Illinois.”

Rallies were held by advocates on each side of the issue during the first week of the fall veto session, which began October 22. The two rallies drew between 3,000 to 4,000 participants each hoping to persuade lawmakers to support their side of the issue.

Baptists in Illinois are actively opposed to same-sex marriage. “In every Baptist church I visit across the state of Illinois,” said Adams, “I find people uniformly opposed to same-sex marriage on biblical, moral, and societal grounds, and very frustrated with the legislators who support its establishment in Illinois.”

SB 10 was passed by the Illinois Senate on February 14.

Same-sex marriage is legal in 14 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

Lisa Sergent is director of communications for the Illinois Baptist State Association.

Meredith Flynn

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Meredith is managing editor of the Illinois Baptist newspaper.