Rev. Steve Parelli demonstrating for Marriage Equality in the halls
of the New York state capital.  June 20, 2011
A photo page of . . .
Marriage Equality
Demonstration at Albany
Capital, June 20, 2011
Poster board reads:

"Steve & Jose
Married in 2008!
but . . .
Above and at Left:  Rev.
Steve  Parelli with David
Tyree, New York Giants
Super Bowl XLII hero. NY
State Capital, Albany, NY
June 20, 2011
Photo by Kelly Mapes
Photo by Kelly Mapes
Photo by Kelly Mapes
Photo by Kelly Mapes
Photo by
Brooks/The New
York Times

demonstrates Monday
in favor of gay
marriage amid a group
of anti-gay marriage
demonstrators outside
the state Senate
chambers in Albany.
At left:  Rev. Stephen Parelli
answering questions from a
news reporter
Below:  Rev. Steve Parelli
walking between two rows
of the religious opposition,
carrying his wedding photo
high and proud.
Click on "play"
at lower right to
hear the
pictured in this
photo, singing
church songs.
The following link goes to the article in which the above photo, with caption, was found:
The Parelli-Ortiz poster photo appeared in the following
TV news reports
WCBS-TV - see poster board at very beginning of video
ABC 7 Eyewitness News - see embedded vieo at top of this web page
News 4 WIVB - go to the segment beginning at 1:38; this is a YouTube video
Rev. Stephen Parelli, a marriage equality supporter, says "I believe that as people
know us and see us as human beings, there's more of a chance to dialogue and
compromise and find a middle ground."
Fox 23 reporter Walt McClure, in his article "Official session ends
at Capitol with leaders still talking" wrote:
At right:
ABC 7 Eyewitness News
This video played on TV, June 20,
2011.  Jose had family, friends and
co-workers say, "I say you and Steve
in that poster photo . . . "
Go to 1:17  in above video to see Steve marching with  poster
Photo by Kelly Mapes
David Tyree                Rev Steve Parelli
Rev. Steve
Parelli with
David Tyree
of Super
Bowel XLII
This web page was created June 20, 2011 in the Bronx, NY
Visitors to this web page since June 20, 2011.
As a New Yorker and a former
evangelical Baptist pastor, I urge
you, Senator, to vote for marriage

Sent: Wed, June 15, 2011 6:54:39 PM

John Flanagan
(518) 455-2071
Roy McDonald (518) 455-2381
James Alesi (518) 455-2015
Stephen Saland (518) 455-2411
Mark Grisanti (518) 455-3240

Rev. Stephen R. Parelli, MDiv,
Executive Director
Other Sheep
2962 Decatur Ave., 5D
Bronx, NY 10458
718-360-0884 (office/home)
347-497-0861 (cell)

Please vote for Marriage Equality


I grew up in the Syracuse, NY, area. I
now live in NYC with my partner of 13
years. We were married in 2008 in
California. He is a native of Brooklyn. I
was an evangelical Baptist pastor until
age 44. I am now 58 years old.
My partner, Jose Ortiz - a guidance
counselor in the NYC public schools -
and I both grew up evangelical
Christians and were both taught that our
sexual orientation is an abomination
before God. It will be decades before the
evangelical church welcomes us, I fear.
We trust we don't have to wait that long
for our civil rights.

My conscience before God is clear. I am
a gay man. By nature? By nurture? Or
both? I don't know; but this I know: I am
constitutionally gay. May New York State
give me marriage equality irrespective of
what religion may or may not teach about
same-sex marriage; and may I choose to
attend the church that best represents
my views and my convictions about my
sexual orientation.

Vote for equality; let the church be the
church and let the state be the state.
Please vote for equality. Vote for sexual

(My parents have cast their "vote" - they
have chosen to not speak to me ever;
they live in the Cortland, NY, area. If you
listen to constituents like my parents --
like the James Dobson crowd -- you will
vote no. My own parents have disowned
me -- I pray my state will not disown me.
My right as a gay man to marriage
equality in no way hinders the James
Dobson crowd's right to marriage; why
do they choose to keep from me the
rights they enjoy?)

  ------End of email to the Senators---------

Note:  The above Senator names were provided by
Citizen Link, A Focus on the Family Affiliate.  Of
course, I used Citizen Link's action alert to tell the
senators just the opposite of what Focus on the
Family was asking for.
Below is a copy of an email I sent on
June 15, 2011 to Five Key Senators
Outside the state Senate chambers in
Albany, I danced down the hallways between two
rows of the chanting, singing religious right who
were opposing marriage equality. It was liberating.

I was standing at one end of the hall with other
marriage equality supporters.  This particular group
from the religious right were lining both sides of the
hall, separate from where we were standing.

I decided to walk between the rows of the religious
objectors with my head held high -- with my
wedding-day poster board photo held above.  The
picture said it all:  I am a very grateful gay man for
the wonderful partner, I believe, God has granted

I felt so victorious, so vindicated, so lucky to be me -
a gay man - with a loving partner, that I began to
dance as I walked.

At times I looked heavenward toward the ceilings of
the hall in happy self-affirmation, as if God were

"This is my father's world" they sang.  And I sang it,
too.  It was liberating to raise my voice in chorus
with theirs, albeit our singing had to carry
two-different implied meanings.  

For one Christian (myself) to stand before one's
opposition - other Christians (them) - and say "No,
this is what I am before God as I understand God
for myself," is the historic Reformation cry.  It is the
spirit of Protestantism:  To know and believe in God
according to the dictates of one's own conscience.

I was protesting in that spirit before today's
inheritors of the ways of the Reformers.

And, like then, to protest openly, before your
religious brother, against the generally accepted
body of belief was for me, in these halls of the state
capital, very liberating.

Steve Parelli
Written, June 21, 2011
Bronx, NY