Supreme Court Decisions

The Supreme Court is handing down important decisions this week and next which will affect our common life as a nation, and our life as a congregation.  Their opinions on health care, fair housing, and same sex marriage directly impact the lives of members of our community at St. Stephen’s.  While many persons of faith assert a stark line of separation between Church and State and decry the  infringement of religious freedom, other people of faith see these civil authorities as workers of justice who reflect God’s hand, even if they don’t do so in God’s name.

Millions of people in this country are in need of health care, in spite of the provisions in today’s decision.  The fact that Texas stands as the largest state to refuse Medicaid expansion impacts us all.  The lack of access to care is a pox upon us.  At the same time, today’s ruling is a balm to those in our congregation and city who rely on the exchange.

As our congregation has been learning about affordable housing, we have been watching for the ruling issued today regarding fair housing.  Today’s ruling challenges policy that would perpetuate discrimination.  It encourages cities to mix housing stock so that the effects of income inequality can be minimized.  Fairness is a Christian value.

Finally, we await the decision next week on same sex marriage.  Our community knows the blessing of full inclusion of LGBT folks and the sorrows of discrimination.  While many of our Christian brothers and sisters bemoan the prospect of a ruling extending this civil right, we know from experience the richness of justice in this matter.

As Christians we know that faith is incarnational.  We put flesh on our beliefs by our practices.  Public policy affects us all and it is important that we seek justice for all.  May we continue to hold the justices in prayer and our citizens as we struggle to embody our values.