“The Advocacy Committee for Women’s Concerns concurs with the rationale given in this overture. The practice of excluding people who are gay and lesbian from marriage has its roots in the persistence of patriarchal standards for the lives of women and men. The notion that men and maleness are superior dictates that men and women behave in particular ways that abide by the constructed rules their sex has been assigned. For this reason, same-gender loving women and men are perceived as a direct threat to the norms that patriarchy lays out, as they, in their loving, challenge the models of prescribed masculinity and femininity determined by patriarchy. Gay men are a threat as they are often perceived as “too feminine,” and lesbian women are perceived as “too masculine.”…
As we watch as state by state people in the U.S. are standing against this form of discrimination, we challenge the church to act now with a prophetic voice that joins in this justice movement, rather than responding after marriage equality has been established across the country.” However on the AI items, 13-02,13-05 and 13-08, that would allow for those pastors, who wished to do so, the right to marry same gender couples, while also stating that those who would find it unexceptable need not do so, the ACWC’s advice is thus:
While ACWC does believe that allowing teaching elders to conduct marriage ceremonies of same-sex couples is a movement in the direction of progress in the church (See ACWC’s rationale for Item 13-09), we hesitate to endorse an authoritative interpretation that explicitly states also the allowance of refusal to conduct services or give use of church property. The authoritative interpretation ACWC has chosen to support in Item 13-09 certainly does allow for refusal to conduct a ceremony, as no teaching elder is forced to conduct any marriage ceremony, regardless of the sex of the couple. It simply is not explicitly stated. As the church continues to make progress on this issue as state-by-state we see acceptance of same-sex marriage increasing widely, leaving the allowance for refusal unstated will make for easier movement toward full access for same-sex couples to marriage in the church in the long run. (Italics mine)On AIs 13-03, 13-10, that do not state there should be an allowance the ACWC has this quote:
The ACWC concurs with the rationale given in Item 13-09 and understands implementing this authoritative interpretation to be a movement in the direction of progress in the church for fair and equal treatment of all people regardless of sexual orientation. While we advise approval, we do so with an understanding that this is only one step in moving toward a truly just approach to same-sex couples in the church. The ACWC would still advocate for full access to the covenant of marriage blessed by the church for all couples, regardless of the law of individual states. In all things, we believe the church is called to be ahead of the government when it comes to implementing just policies.Two explorations need to be made here. The first quote leads to a question—how did such nonsense became the ideology of a supposedly Christian woman’s organization? The second and third quote are troubling—it portends a battle between not only church and state, but between denomination and church. To put it clearer, between that which is no longer church and that which is the Church.
The first quote: How did the ACWC come up with such nonsense as found in the first quote? There is a long history, but first of all notice they are not saying anything about Scripture or the importance of the biblical text. But they imply that the biblical text is simply human and is not the word of God. They are implying that the living Word of God, who stated that marriage, was between a man and a woman, and the written word of God has no authority. So what historical background informs their views and where does their authority come from?
(Before I go further with this I want to be very clear that there is no biblical text which states that gay men are a threat because they are too feminine or lesbians are a threat because they are too masculine. Marriage and its exclusive nature, between a woman and a man, are God’s choice and mandate by right of creative power and wisdom. We should bow before God's wisdom knowing that he does all things well.)
But the words used by the ACWC have a history and a theology. And they are a denial of the Lordship of Jesus Christ and the good he wishes to do in the world through both men and women. There is a very well acknowledged but complex history of such radical feminism. However, to put it simply a part of the feminist movement evolved from a cultural, or romantic feminism that saw all male leadership as overbearing and cruel. It saw the essence of women as the good and ideal.
This radical movement can be traced from Matilda Joslyn Gage (1826-98) to the late radical feminist Mary Daley. Neither Gage nor Daley were Christians and they both hated the Bible and Christianity with a vengeance. Gage dabbled in the Occult and Daley became interested in both the occult and modern Wicca. And for both most evil could be traced to ‘the patriarchy.’ The ACWC is infected with such ideas.
On ACWC’s Facebook page they have links to several radical feminist websites. Their connections to the world of radical feminism are quite clear. For instance on March 16th ACWC focused on a ritual for women’s history using a ritual by the extreme feminist group Women’s Alliance for Theology, Ethics and Ritual (WATER). They linked to the liturgy. It ends with “Dancing Sophia’s Circle:
Ring us round O ancient circle,The ACWC Facebook page is also connected to the Feminist Agenda Network, which seems to deal with many Progressive Presbyterian issues. And the ACWC page is also loaded with progressive issues which celebrate their victories including those connected to abortion. Except for human trafficking, orthodox and conservative women’s concerns, whether they are Presbyterian or not, are not a part of the page or of the organization.
Great Mother dancing free,
Beauty, strength and Holy Wisdom,
Blessing you and blessing me.
The second quote, which pushes for an Authoritative Interpretation which does not state that those whose conscience would be hurt by marrying same sex couple were free to not do so is a wide open statement about the ACWC’s understanding of human freedom. They wish to prepare the way for a time when all in the denomination would be required to marry same sex couples. They undoubtedly see a time when the United States government would make it extremely difficult for those who believe in the biblical definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman only.
There are many reasons to vote no on all of these items and AIs, but an important reason is because now one can see the ideological views of those pressing for a yes. They are boldly intolerant in their tolerance of sin. They care not a bit for the authority of Scripture or the future of the Church of Christ.
 With this introduction “The ACWC’s rationale for Item 13-11 is applicable here as well:” this same quote is also placed on all Items asking for the biblical definition of marriage as between a woman and a man to be upheld. 13-07, 13-12, 13-13
The item 13-09 is that item the ACWC agrees with and this is their statement: The ACWC concurs with the rationale given in Item 13-09 and understands implementing this authoritative interpretation to be a movement in the direction of progress in the church for fair and equal treatment of all people regardless of sexual orientation. While we advise approval, we do so with an understanding that this is only one step in moving toward a truly just approach to same-sex couples in the church. The ACWC would still advocate for full access to the covenant of marriage blessed by the church for all couples, regardless of the law of individual states. In all things, we believe the church is called to be ahead of the government when it comes to implementing just policies.
For instance see, The rise of Radical Feminism in Mainline Churches #2, The Rise of Radical Feminism in Mainline Churches: A History #3; The Rise of Radical Feminism in Mainline Churches: A History # 4; The Rise of Radical Feminism in Mainline Churches: A History # 5 and The Rise of Radical Feminism in Mainline Churches: A History # 6