US: Group of Illinois religious leaders offer to perform same-sex marriages

PinkNews logo with white background and rainbow corners

A list of religious clergy happy to perform same-sex marriages has been compiled by a gay rights group.

Ahead of the 1 June effective date of a change of law to allow gay and lesbian couples to marry, Equality Illinois posted a leaflet on its website.

The Attorney General in the state last month advised that all gay couples in the state now have the option to marry, despite the state’s same-sex marriage law doesn’t come into effect until June.

The decision came after it became clear that there was nobody defending the former ban on same-sex marriage.

Several counties have been issuing marriage licences to same-sex couples since.

Equality Illinois’ list included Christian, Jewish and Muslim religious leaders all happy to officiate at same-sex ceremonies.

Speaking to the Associated Press, Equality Illinois CEO Bernard Cherkasov said: “Many couples who have waited — in some cases for decades — to have their love recognized by the state also want to have their marriage vows sanctified in a religious setting.”

Despite giving the option for religious leaders to perform same-sex ceremonies, the new law does not require them to.