National Cathedral’s Hall on two high court decisions

Lindsey Welling, special to

WASHINGTON – He celebrated over one Supreme Court ruling but called another a tragedy.

In his sermon Sunday, the Very Rev. Gary Hall praised the court’s ruling that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between one man and one woman. But he denounced the ruling that strikes down a core part of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The ruling allows nine states, mostly in the South, to change election laws without federal approval in advance.

The dean of the Washington National Cathedral says it is a big step back.

“As we exult in the joy of victories for our lesbian and gay brothers and sisters,” Hall said in his sermon, “we must also weep with the pains and losses of our brothers and sisters of color.”

The Supreme Court justices who supported the 5-to-4 ruling say that the country has changed and new legislation is needed to speak to current conditions.

Reverend Hall urged his congregation to call on Congress to restore what the court took away.

“Let us, together, clean up and reverse this filthy enactment,” he said. “That will be hard work, but it will be a joyful and transforming journey, too.”

Hall’s entire sermon is below.

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