May the peace of God be with you!
After a long and grueling campaign, the voting is done, the ballots are in, and now we are waiting for the final results on Proposition 8. Preliminary results show the “Yes on Eight” side leading by a slender margin, but there are still a great number of absentee and provisional ballots left to be counted. It may be some time before we get a final vote count.
Here are three thoughts for you as we await the final results.
We should be very proud of the good work we’ve done. The current results show the “Yes on Eight” side leading 52% to 48%. But in March of 2000, a similar proposition passed by a much greater margin (61%-39%). Even with all of the money the “Yes on Eight” people poured into this campaign, they have still seen a huge decline in their support.
As a result of Proposition 8, a host of new individuals, organizations, and businesses have stepped forward to support us and defend our rights. Our county is one of many in California that voted against LGBT rights in 2000, and for LGBT rights in 2008. We made that change happen, and we should be proud of our good work.
Recognize that you may have some anger. In the final days of the campaign, supporters of Proposition 8 have said and done some very hurtful things. It is natural and healthy to be angry in a situation like this. But if you are angry, find a constructive way to express it. Talk with friends you can trust and let them know how you feel. Write letters that express your feelings, and don’t mail them! Spend some time in prayer, and let God know how angry you are – God is big enough for you to be honest about your feelings without holding anything back.
If you are angry, don’t keep it bottled up, or you may lose your temper at inappropriate times or in inappropriate ways. Feel free to call me at (408) 607-5471 if you need someone to talk to.
Be patient with your friends. Not everyone will react to the election in the same way. Some people may easily move on, others may need to spend a lot of time talking about what has happened, and others may not be ready to talk about it just yet. Some people may feel conflicted as they are elated by some of the election results and disappointed by others.
Your friends and family may be in a different place than you are, even if they care just as much about Proposition 8 as you do. Be patient with your friends. Love them, pray for them, and support them.
May God bless us all as we move forward from here. We have done amazing things together, and together we will continue to transform our world!
Michael Patrick Ellard,
Senior Pastor, the Metropolitan Community Church of San José