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THE WASHINGTON POST
From left to right Marian Shields Robinson, First Lady Michelle Obama, Malia, President Barack Obama and Sasha are greeted by The Rev. Luis Leon as they arrive for a morning service on Inauguration Day at St. John’s Church in Washington, D.C., on Sunday, January 20, 2013. )
Rev. Luis Leon said that he received “hundreds and hundreds of e-mails” about his reference to gays in the benediction at President Obama’s second inauguration.
In Sunday’s sermon at St. John’s, the historic Episcopal church across from the White House, Leon said, “You’ve heard my sermons, so I know it didn’t surprise you, but it surprised a lot of other people.”
Standing on the podium with the president and other dignitaries on Jan. 21, Leon prayed, “With the blessing of your blessing we will see that we are created in your image, whether brown, black or white, male or female, first generation or immigrant American, or daughter of the American Revolution, gay or straight, rich or poor.”
In his sermon on March 3, Leon suggested that he couldn’t respond to all the objections he received by e-mail after the inauguration, but he did engage with at least one writer who claimed that the Bible forbids homosexuality.
“I believe that the Bible is a sign post, not a hitching post,” Leon told his congregation yesterday. “Do you believe in continuing revelation? If you do, then you have to be ready to be surprised by God’s continuing revelation.”
We can’t expect the Bible to tell us exactly what to do about gun control, nuclear weapons or other contemporary controversies, Leon said. “It’s up to us to use [the Bible] to seek God’s direction.”