Members of Mount Airy Church of God in Christ in Philadelphia take part in a service. RNS photo by Mary Godleski
The pulpits of the nation's black churches took measure Sunday (May 13) of President Obama's decision to support gay marriage, and the result was conflicted.
Some churches were silent on the issue. At others, pastors spoke against the president's decision Wednesday — but kindly of the man himself. A few blasted the president and his decision. A minority spoke in favor of the decision and expressed understanding of the president's change of heart.
Bishop Timothy Clarke, head of the First Church of God, a large African-American church with a television ministry in Columbus, Ohio, was perhaps most typical. He felt compelled to address the president's comments at a Wednesday evening service and again Sunday morning. He was responding to an outpouring of calls, emails and text messages from members of his congregation after the president's remarks.