By signing the marriage license, the minister (keeping it generic here) is acting as an agent of the State. And I will wager that, at some time, somebody is going to push it. And don’t think that somebody isn’t thinking about it. From Time, June 26, 2011:
**The Bittersweet Victory: Why Gay Marriage Still Isn’t Marriage **
Marriage without a church or temple wedding isn’t the real thing. Why can some people have all the bells and whistles in the church of their choice but not me? Of course, there have been and will be congregations and churches that allow gay men and lesbians to be married in their midst and to bless those unions, recognizing that God loves them just as much as Governor Andrew Cuomo does. But some rich and influential religious institutions are not only free to continue to reject gay men and women as equal beneficiaries of all aspects of faith but will now also rally their congregants to reject politicians who are willing to abide with this extension of secular civil rights — no matter how much acceptance there is of same-sex marriage elsewhere, no matter how many wedding announcements appear in the New York Times.
This author doesn’t believe that he has equal rights until he is able to get married to his boyfriend in St Patrick’s Cathedral with Cardinal Dolan presiding. Don’t, for a second, think that he’s alone. And don’t, for a second, think that he won’t do anything to make that a reality.