St Matthew in the City, a progressive Anglican church in Auckland, New Zealand, has erected a billboard in support of a bill to legalise same-gender marriages. The billboard shows two model brides kissing on a wedding cake, with the text “We don’t care who’s on top”. St Matthew’s is supportive of Louisa Wall’s Definition of Marriage Amendment Bill, introduced on August 29 in the New Zealand Parliament.
The Revd Clay Nelson, one of the clergy at St Matthew’s, observes, “It should be of no surprise that St Matthew’s with its long history of supporting the full inclusion of the LGBTQ community in both the church and society endorses the bill. Our question is why would any church not endorse two people making a loving commitment to each other? Through our billboard we are expressing our solidarity with the many Christians in many denominations who are calling on Members of Parliament to support Louisa Wall’s bill.”
Vicar Glynn Cardy points out that St Matthew’s has long been involved in weddings, with about 80 to 90 couples pledging their love each year. “What is important is their willingness to commit themselves to each other, not their gender. It is the joy and risk of giving oneself to another in a bond of mutuality, fidelity, and love that is at the heart of the sacrament of marriage.”
St Matthew’s looks forward to a time when the barrier of sexual orientation will be removed from the requirement for a church wedding. “Such prejudice”, says Cardy, “is contrary to the good news of Jesus Christ.”
The Who Cares billboard was developed at TBWA\Whybin\Tequila, Auckland, by executive creative director Andy Blood, creatives Devon Wood, Stacey Vergis, retoucher Frank Turner, illustrator Elena Panaita, account manager Tineke van der Walle and producer Michelle Hong.