Aw, I’m glad I could offer a comfort. I really do think we do not have enough info to judge your friends, and we should be careful about judging. Of course, we also must judge actions, and I think that is what people in this thread are trying to do. But sensitivity is needed.
What is happening in our country and culture is shocking, and getting worse, and I feel sure that likely the time will come, before long, when the Church will decide it must have a different or a severed partnership for marriage with the government. (Its painfully lonely and helpless to have the realization that this is justice, and therefore sometime later God will act on it by moving the Church to change on it, while most don’t see what you see). In these times there are many tests for our faith when we see the Church or those in the Church acting or speaking in unexpected ways, and it can be painful and confusing,. But God has a plan, and some reason, when He allows what He allows in His Church. He makes all things (even really bad things) work together for the good.
Matters of conscience and moral choices that one makes in this dysfunctional, disobedient culture really matter to me. Not to get too off-topic, but right now I am currently struggling with my work in public school… I feel that for the purpose of making money I work there. I give it my best but I feel I am participating in something I don’t believe in, on so many levels. Including just the choice of a Common Core Curriculum, which public schools are so immersed in now, which I feel is so wrong on SO MANY levels.
So I have studied and contemplated much on the whole broad subject of education, and I have particular well-formed ideas on the topic. I feel its reasonable to assume that your friend’s family has put a lot of thought into government and politics (which I have not, as it’s an “ugly” subject, to me, that I prefer to avoid, not contemplate - though my avoidance of the topic is no virtue) and likely they have acted on their deeply held beliefs and conscience, paying the price of disrespect and ill repute from those that hear of their choice and resent it.
So while I am at a crossroads right now thinking I should turn away from public education (though I cannot leave immediately, I need to start planning for it to happen soon) I can imagine that some who contemplate our government might find it imperative that they disassociate from it. Yet I can see how people would say, "We’re paying taxes; they should not get away with not paying taxes" (Taxes seem to be the sorest point with responders here).
Anyway I knew the Church needed the State’s permission, as I have married fairly recently. But until this thread, I did not realize that there are various reasons why this Church/State partnership poses difficulties for some. But in the end I do think that acting in accord with the requirements of Holy Mother Church, while waiting patiently for God to act, will always be the right choice. God honors obedience. Even though very hard at first.*** [see next post]
“Better is the end of thing than the beginning thereof.”