Two gay couples married Thursday in a
New Jersey church.
The double wedding is believed to be
the first gay marriage in New Jersey celebrated in a church.
Robert Spence, 70, and Mike Walsh, 69,
together 39 years, and Stan Rodriguez, 68, and Jerry Devolder, 67,
together 28 years, were married by the Rev. James deBoer of Trinity
United Church in Warren Township, the New
Jersey Hills reported.
Both couples are from Tennessee and
members of the Cookeville United Church of Christ.
After a protracted legal fight spanning
nearly a decade, New Jersey became the 14th state to
legalize gay nuptials in October.
“We have been committed for a long
time,” Rodriguez told the paper. “To be recognized by the courts
and everything else is very important.”
“After a 39-year courtship, we get to
do what we never thought we would ever get to do,” said Walsh, who
added that they were warmly received.
“The hospitality of your community
has been impeccable,” he said.