The Community of Christ Church, formerly known as the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, has entertained the recommendation that it change its policy to recognize same-sex marriages and allow all to enter the priesthood, regardless of sexual orientation, at their national conference on Sunday, attended by 1,500 delegates.
The Church, organized in 1830, has 250,000 members worldwide in over 50 countries, and is based out of Independence, Missouri.
“After hearing multiple perspectives,” the church’s brief on the recent meeting reads, “the USA National Conference, by more than the required 67-percent majority, made the following recommendations to the Community of Christ First Presidency and Council of Twelve Apostles…”
Regarding marriage and civil unions, the recommendations include that the “sacrament of marriage be extended, where legal in the USA, to persons of the same sex/gender…” and in states where same-sex marriage is not legal, “…that a church-recognized way for two persons of the same sex/gender to publicly express their convent to each other be made available…” allowing for church-recognized ceremonies.
Regarding the priesthood, the conference delegates recommend “allowing a priesthood call to be processed according to established procedures regardless of sexual orientation, including a person in a monogamous, committed, same-sex/gender relationship in the USA.”
The proposed changes would only be applicable in the United States, despite the church’s presence around the globe, and would need to be approved by church leaders before they would take effect.
The church’s website notes that such deliberations to develop, approve, and implement interim policies can take up to one year.