#1078 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 24 May 2015
The debate over whether to redefine marriage to include same sex couples is often heated, but at its heart it is a simple debate about how Australian society should order itself.
In my view, at the risk of offending some of my religious friends, the current impasse might best be overcome by conceding that people of same-sex orientation ought to be free to marry, should they wish to do so; and the church should model and promote a more exclusive (and, some would say, higher) marriage ideal celebrating the permanent and exclusive union of a woman and a man, should they wish to be so united.
This accommodates both the liberal and radical impulse, with its emphasis on universal freedom and justice, and the more conservative approach of preserving the best traditions of the past.
We will never agree about the nature and limits of marriage. We need a compromise that works.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.