My, my, my, how we struggle in the United Methodist Church. How confusing things get. Here's a quote from a United Methodist News Service story titled: "Bishops Offer Advice After Same Sex Ruling."
"Clergy cannot preside over the wedding ceremony. Specifically, these bishops say, clergy cannot officiate at the vows, exchange of rings or the declaration and pronouncement of marriage. They cannot sign the certificate of marriage or participate in any way that makes it appear to people present that they are conducting the wedding.
"However, these bishops say, clergy can assist same-gender couples in finding other venues for their weddings; provide pre-marital counseling; attend the ceremony; read Scripture, pray or offer a homily."
So, I cannot appear to be conducting a same-sex wedding. BUT I can provide the pre-marital counseling, be at the ceremony, read the scripture at the ceremony, pray at the ceremony, and offer a homily at the ceremony that is, according to the laws of my church, 'incompatible with Christian teaching.'"
Bear with me, bishops, I'm an old retired parson, living out here in the country, far away from sophisticated theological thinkers. I need a little time to think. I'm more than a little confused.