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Illinois pastors speak out against gay marriage

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ILLINOIS - Illinois faith leaders sent out a letter to legislators Wednesday on why they're against a bill legalizing same-sex marriage.

The letter represents about 1,700 faith communities throughout Illinois. Members of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod signed the letter as well. Taylor Ridge, Illinois Zion Lutheran Church Pastor Mark Eddy did not sign Wednesday's letter, but he does support the beliefs expressed.

"God created marriage to be for a man and a woman," Eddy said. "For us in the church, it's enough that God said so."

The letter says that the continuous attempts to change the definition of marriage are "full of serious danger." The bill in the Illinois state legislature would legalize same-sex marriage in Illinois, but churches would not have to preside over a same-sex marriage if they did not want to. The letter claims that the state would still be limiting a church's right to its freedom of religion if same-sex marriage were legal.

"Churches have been the experts in marrying for a long time," Eddy said. "I would hope that people would be willing to listen to what the experts on an issue have to say."

State Senator Heather Stevens hopes to bring up the legislation on Thursday in the lame-duck session. A new set of lawmakers will be sworn in January 9th. Illinois would be the 10th state in the union to legalize same-sex marriage. In Iowa, same-sex marriage is already legal.

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