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May 14th, 2012
09:12 AM ET

Across country, black pastors weigh in on Obama's same-sex marriage support

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

Washington (CNN) – Addressing his large, mostly black congregation on Sunday morning, the Rev. Wallace Charles Smith did not mince words about where he stood on President Barack Obama's newly announced support for same-sex marriage: The church is against it, he said, prompting shouts of "Amen!" from the pews.

And yet Smith hardly issued a full condemnation of the president.

"We may disagree with our president on this one issue," Smith said from the pulpit of the Shiloh Baptist Church in Washington. "But we will keep him lifted up in prayer. ... Pray for President Barack Obama."

And Smith said there were much bigger challenges facing the black community – "larger challenges that we have to struggle with" – bringing his full congregation to its feet, with many more amens.

Days after Obama announced his personal support for same-sex marriage, pastors across the country offered their Sunday-morning opinions on the development, with the words of black pastors – a key base of support for Obama in 2008, that is also largely opposed to gay marriage – carrying special weight in a presidential election year. But black pastors were hardly monolithic in addressing Obama's remarks.

Read the full post on CNN's Belief blog

soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. L. Song

    It is a human right to create family, and to associate with those you love.

    There is nothing Christian at all, about trying to take that right from your fellow human beings.

    And if we did not learn that from slavery days, we learned nothing. That was one of the worst crimes against Black people – to destroy families. Why would you wish that on somebody else?

    Lastly, in America, we are supposed to live and let live. Gays are a tiny minority and they are not hurting anybody. Get out of their business and mind your own. There are REAL problems in this world.

    May 15, 2012 at 2:00 am | Report abuse |
    • raceisamyth

      You dont know jack about slavery.

      Heres a lesson for you. Enjoy. Its 100% true.

      Free black Africans built their own boats and sailed to America to escape slavery.18 million Africans were taken into slavery when race based slavery was invented. Only 6% came to America by the British, not by Americans.

      Indeed, one thing people need to know is that there is a higher percentage of people in this country who own private jets now than people who owned slaves back in the day. Also, people seem to think African slavery stopped w/ Lincoln when it still continues today. The pattern of the slave traders from Holland, Spain, and England was to foment war between local tribes and have the winning tribe sell the losing tribe into slavery. Many of these families who engaged in such activity back then are still around and do it today. Those are the white people blacks should hate. But few people of any color seem to know their names. And the reason it doesn’t get taught in school is because it still is happening and black people don’t want to admit that fellow black people sold them into slavery. To deal with an issue as big as African slavery, you have to be open confronting the entire problem. Nobody seems to want to talk about it except blaming white people who didn’t even own slaves or aren’t descended from a slave owner.
      Lincoln just signed the paper. 600000 americans died to free the slaves. Most were white euros. Theres good and bad in all peoples histories. Those cartel familes played a huge role in destroying the American Indians also.

      May 15, 2012 at 2:37 am | Report abuse |
    • raceisamyth

      L Song.....america had black slave owners also. Look up the 1865 SC census, for a man named Richard Halloway Sr. He was black and owned over 150 slaves. Some were American Indian, Scots Irish, and fellow africans. im black, white and cherokee.

      May 15, 2012 at 2:43 am | Report abuse |
    • raceisamyth

      L Song...they removed white peoples names also.75 years ago it was commonpractice that if a child was named after the doctor, instead of the parents, the delivery was free. lots of people did this. My grandfathers name was changed.

      May 15, 2012 at 2:46 am | Report abuse |