ROSEVILLE, Calif. – “Brides” and “grooms” are no longer allowed to marry in the State of California.
That privilege is only extended to individuals who allow themselves to be called “Party A” and “Party B” on marriage licenses.
Pastor Doug Bird of Abundant Life Fellowship in Roseville, Calif., was alarmed to find the state now rejects the traditional terms after he officiated his first marriage ceremony last week following the California Supreme Court decision to overturn Proposition 22.
The couple had written the words “bride” and “groom” next to “Party A” and “Party B” because they wanted to be legally recognized as husband and wife.
However, the Placer County marriage license was denied.
“I received back the license and a letter from the Placer County Clerk/Recorder stating that the license ‘does not comply with California State registration laws,'” Bird said in a statement from the Pacific Justice Institute.
It was an “unacceptable alteration,” the County Recorder’s Office claimed the State Office of Vital Records determined.
“What’s next?” Bird wrote in a Sept. 4 letter. “Will the State of California force [ministers] to use the terms “Party A” and “Party B” in the ceremony itself?”
In a 4-3 decision, California’s high court declared that legal definitions of marriage as a union between a man and a woman were unconstitutional. Since the ruling, the generic designations have been added to legal documents.
Pacific Justice Institute President Brad Dacus said voters must change the state constitution by voting on the marriage amendment in November if they wish to preserve the traditional meaning of marriage.
“Unless Proposition 8 is passed, heterosexual couples will be forced to wed out of the state if they wish to be officially identified as bride and groom or husband and wife.” He said in a statement. “This is a major slap in the face for traditional marriage.”