REQUESTS TO REMARRY: THE PASTOR'S CATCH-22

Leadership Forum

Oklahoma may seem an unlikely place to discuss divorce and remarriage. After all, it's the state that inspired a wholesome, well-scrubbed musical and spawned esteemed family man James Dobson. The land of oil wells, a prayer tower, and straight-living towns like Merle Haggard's Muskogee are a world away from the revolving liaisons of Hollywood and the quickie marriage parlors of Reno.

But even the western end of the Bible Belt has been frayed by the growing national trend. All four ministers in this forum are confronting more and more people seeking remarriage. One said that fully half the requests he gets to officiate at weddings come from those previously married.

It's a volatile subject. How can pastors minister to such people without undermining the Bible's teaching on marriage? Of all the LEADERSHIP forums, this one provoked the most disagreement. Yet interestingly, the afternoon discussion in Tulsa was not disagreeable.

In voices softened with drawls and respect, the participants spoke ...

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