Monday, July 04, 2005

Church Endorses Marriage Between Pets and Owners

Image hosted by

Pets Now Dating Material

The United Methodist Episcopal Church became the first church denomination in the country to approve a resolution endorsing marriages between pets and owners, July 4.

The resolution calls on the denomination to consider wedding policies that do not discriminate against couples in which one of them has "fur, feather, fins or gills."

"There is nothing wrong with loving someone, even if that someone is a dog or cat," said Rev. Marci Himmelstein of the 1st United Methodist Episcopal Church in Bangor, Maine. "Who are we to deny someone the opportunity to give and receive love? Who am I to tell someone who they can love?"

Himmelstein says response to the resolution has been overwhelmingly positive, and expects the church will be booked for numerous weddings over the upcoming months. Roughly 90 percent of the Church's synod voted to approve the resolution.

Patti Monger, who teaches Vacation Bible School at the church in Bangor, said she is delighted by the Church's resolution. "I am in love with my fish. There, I said it. I am no longer ashamed, because this is no longer the love that dares not speak its name," she said.

Monger said she and her fantail goldfish, Oscar, are planning a spring wedding, with Rev. Himmelstein officiating. "We want to have kids, definitely. Or fish," Monger said. "With technological advances, there is no telling what we will come up with!"

Church usher Bob Johnson, who was recently jilted by his live-in fiancee, said this new resolution gives him the freedom to explore other options. "There's always been something special between me and my cat, Duchess. She was there for me when Danielle left, and who knows? Maybe she is the one."

Some religious and ethical leaders have questioned whether a pet can really "consent" to a marriage with a human being. This where Pete Fisher, a self-titled "Pet Whisperer" comes in. "I talk to the dog or cat, interact with him or her," he said. "I toss balls to him, pet him, ask him questions, such as do you love your owner? Could you envision yourself in a loving, committed relationship with your owner? Are you ready for marriage? If the dog wags his tail and has that little spring in his step and gleam in his eye, I know he is up for commitment."

"Let freedom - and wedding bells ring - for people and the pets they love!" United Methodist Episcopal Church president Roy Joiner stated in a news release.

Phil Whitfield said he has never been so proud to be a member of the United Methodist Episcopal Church as he is today. "I know one little German Shepherd puppy who is about to get an impressive engagement collar when I get home," he said.

Striving to be a Higher Being