Press Releases

ERLC President Russell Moore Speaks on Marriage, Family at Vatican

November 18, 2014

WASHINGTON D.C., Nov. 18, 2014Russell Moore, president of The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, joined Pope Francis and others in addressing a worldwide interreligious body at the “Vatican”:http://humanum.it/en/ on issues of marriage and family. Despite theological differences among attendees, Moore said there is a need to stand together on conserving the truth of marriage as a complementary union of man and woman.

Marriage is embedded in the creation order and is the means of human flourishing, said Moore. We recognize that marriage, and the sexual difference on which it is built, is grounded in a natural order bearing rights and responsibilities that was not crafted by any human state, and cannot thus be redefined by any human state.

On the subject of complementarity, Moore said marriage and family are “icons of God’s purpose for the universe” and there is a distinctively Christian urgency” for why Christians must bear witness to marriage.

Moore ended his address by insisting Christians must maintain their witness on the issue of marriage. We will not capitulate on these issues because we cannot, Moore commented. To jettison or to minimize a Christian sexual ethic is to abandon the message Jesus handed to us, and we have no authority to do this. Instead, We stand and speak not with clenched fists or with wringing hands, but with the open hearts of those who have a message and a mission… . We must do so with the confidence of those who know that on the other side of our culture wars, theres a sexual counter-revolution waiting to be born, again.

Moore was one of two evangelical Protestant leaders to speak at this event. Other speakers included Rick Warren, author and pastor of Saddleback Church; Jonathan Sacks, former Prime Rabbi of the UK and the Commonwealth; and Pope Francis, who opened the colloquium with an address on the good and beauty of complementarity in marriage.

A full transcript of Moore’s address can be found “here.”:https://erlc.com/ecommerce-files/Vatican-Address.pdf

The Southern Baptist Convention is Americas largest Protestant denomination with more than 15.8 million members in over 46,000 churches nationwide. The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission is the SBCs ethics, religious liberty and public policy agency with offices in Nashville, Tenn., and Washington, D.C.

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Elizabeth Bristow

Elizabeth Bristow serves as the Press Secretary. Elizabeth oversees press and media operations for the organization. She received a B.A. in Public Relations and Marketing from Union University in 2010. She and her husband reside in Lebanon, Tennessee and are blessed with two beautiful children. Read More by this Author