Who Does Your Marriage Influence?


Kevin Fisher-Paulson

The Archdiocese of San Francisco has instituted a series of radio advertisements promoting marriage.  Part of the advertisements’ message asked married couples how many people are influenced by their marriages.

In a commentary on KQED radio, Kevin Fisher-Paulson, who is a captain with the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department, felt that this is exactly the type of question that needs to be asked:

“You know what? They got this right. Lots of people are affected by my marriage.

“I’m not talking about Catholic marriage, where 40 percent end in divorce. I’m talking about my own gay marriage.”

Kevin, who married his partner, Brian, in California in 2008 during the short period of time when marriage equality existed in the state, provided an interesting answer to the question:

“Brian and I got married, without blessing of either church or law, 25 years ago this month. And in those years, we have fostered medically at risk triplets, nursed friends dying of AIDS, helped friends detox from heroin, taken in rescue dogs and adopted drug-exposed, multi-racial foster children. None of my or Brian’s brothers is still with his first wife, but Brian and I have stood together, for richer and poorer, in sickness and in health. And that has affected the way that our friends look at gay men and their ability to commit.”

Kevin, like many Catholics, hopes for the day when both state and church recognize the commitments of lesbian and gay couples.  He states:

“In the meantime, my husband and I attend Most Holy Redeemer, that gay-friendly church in the Castro, so the rest of the Church can see how many people are affected by our marriage.”

–Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry


3 replies
  1. Babs
    Babs says:

    I believe that this couple have followed the ultimate story that Jesus told about the Good Samaritan who also served those he was supposed to shun. What is the matter with the hierarchy of this Church. I read their pronoucements on Social Justice and then wonder how they can limit the ways in which it is served.

    • Kay Miller
      Kay Miller says:

      Agreed, Babs. The marriage/relationship of these men should stand as an example that it is valued and committment can happen. They have also shown compassion throughout their time together. Could someone explain why this is wrong? If heterosexual marriage is so great, why are there so many divorces? Why do Christians judge so much about what they do not understand?

  2. anglicanboyrichard
    anglicanboyrichard says:

    Reblogged this on anglicanboyrichard and commented:
    AMAZING and something to think about…equality for people cannot be a sin, even if it is in regard to a concept you may disagree with. And you have that right. But so do others to disagree with you. It is all in how it is done. LBGT marriages should not be foisted upon churches quite obviously–that would be a violation of separation of church and state. But neither should they be kicked to the curb as far as legal protections are concerned. That is a violation of human dignity. Kevin is right in what he shares here. It is unfortunate that many Christians have for some reason made this into a modern-day “crusade” of sorts.


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