MCCLV Celebrates National Freedom to Marry Day
For more information call 610-709-8800 or go to www.mcclv.org


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Court House Action
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Service/Celebration
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February 13 & 14, 2009

February 13: Courthouse Rally
February 14: Interfaith Service, Marriage Ceremony

Friday, February 13
Marriage Equality Rally
10 AM
Lehigh County Courthouse
5th and Hamilton Streets
Allentown, PA

In an effort to advocate for marriage equality, same-gender couples will apply for marriage licenses at the Lehigh County Courthouse. All supporters of marriage equality are asked to gather at the Courthouse to celebrate and advocate for the value of gay and lesbian families.

Purple scarves have been knitted by PFLAG Mom Melinda Kohn. All rally participants will receive a purple scarf to wear as a symbol of unity on the issue of marriage equality.

Same-gender couples applying for a license are asked to be in a relationship for at least one year and be okay with media coverage. Couples will be denied a license but will have taken a stand for social justice.

Couples must bring the following:

- - A Social Security card and a photo driver's license or photo ID. If a non-U.S. citizen, a greencard, passport or birth certificate in addition to photo ID.

- - If previously legally married and divorced, a certified copy of the divorce decree is required (available in the county where the divorce occurred).

- - If previously legally married and spouse died, a copy of the death certificate, published obituary, published funeral notice or funeral card is required.

- - $35 in cash. No checks or credit cards. Non-refundable!

- - If a same-sex couple does not want to pay the filing fee, MCCLV asks that the process below be followed: Enter the Marriage License office, share that you are a same-gender couple, ask if you will receive a license (the clerk will say "no") and then say, "see you next year."

- - Couples that want to spend the money to file and be a part of the historical record may do so. If there is a file in Lehigh County that has a growing number of denials of marriage licenses for same-gender couples, it is a concrete statement that we exist, we want equal rights and that we are being denied those rights on paper. No one can say, "gay people don't really want to get married anyway" (and that is what some anti-gay groups say).

- - FYI: You do not need to be a resident of LehighCounty to apply at the Lehigh County Courthouse.

To participate in the application process, contact MCCLV at 610-709-8800 or info@mcclv.org

Same-sex couples cannot get Social Security benefits if their spouse dies. A same-sex spouse will pay more than twice the inheritance tax than an opposite-sex spouse would pay. Hospital visitation, medical decision-making, home ownership and adoption are much more difficult for same-sex couples to obtain compared to opposite-sex couples. Currently, there are 1,400 federal rights and 700 state civil marriage rights that gay and lesbian families are denied. Thank you for joining in this Courthouse action to bring attention to the need for marriage equality.


Saturday, February 14
Interfaith Worship Service
7 PM
Metropolitan Community Church of the Lehigh Valley
930 North 4th Street | First Floor
Allentown, PA18102

This special worship service includes clergy from a variety of faith traditions offering a same-sex marriage ceremony and blessing of relationships. Rabbi Seth Goren (Director of Jewish Student Life, Lehigh University) will be the featured speaker. This evening will be an opportunity to celebrate and support community leaders Dean Hiatt & Robby Schotter who will be joined in marriage. A reception and dance will follow the service. All are welcome.