Christian clerks, notaries given impossible choice

Friday, December 21, 2012
Charlie Butts (

In light of the passage of homosexual "marriage" in Maine last month, notaries and clerks of faith have a tough decision to make -- but help could be on the way.

Even prior to the election, a question was raised about the impact legalizing same-gender "marriage" would have on government officials who issue marriage licenses and perform marriage ceremonies.

Conley, Carroll (Christian Civic League of Maine)Carroll Conley of the Christian Civic League of Maine tells OneNewsNow that in response, Secretary of State Charles Summers, Jr. (R) has issued a guideline "that notaries do not have to perform marriages. They are authorized to perform them, but if someone wants to avoid being a solemnizer of a same-sex marriage, then the option would be not to do marriages at all," Conley explains.

Clerks face the same dilemma -- to either not do marriages at all, or to do both and violate their religious beliefs. That means a Christian notary public or clerk who wants to only provide their services for traditional marriage ceremonies does really have an option.

"So what we're praying for is that we will find those individuals that are not willing just to avoid the issue and enjoy their freedoms and the benefits, but also those persons that will stand up and, of course, with our national partners like Alliance Defending Freedom … offer them the legal resources to make that fight," Conley tells OneNewsNow.

The issue needs to be settled, states Conley, and the Christian Civic League of Maine is encouraging government officials who object to consider that option and make sure the matter is settled before it fades away.

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