The 221st General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ― June 14-21 in Detroit ― will once again consider the definition and constitutional interpretation of marriage. At issue is W-4.9001 of the denomination’s Book of Order, or constitution, which states: “marriage is a gift God has given to all humankind for the well-being of the entire human family. Marriage is a civil contract between a woman and a man. For Christians, marriage is a covenant through which a man and a woman are called to live out together before God their lives of discipleship. In a service of Christian marriage, a lifelong commitment is made by a woman and a man to each other, publicly witnessed and acknowledged by the community of faith.” The 2010 General Assembly, in approving the final report of its Special Committee to Study Issues of Civil Union and Christian Marriage, posed the over-arching question: “How do we extend the grace of God to all, calling all persons to repentance, transformation, and discipleship — regardless of sexual orientation — so that all will experience God’s gracious intention for humanity?” Since then, the U.S. Supreme Court Supreme Court in 2013 struck down Section Three of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), essentially extending federal marriage benefits to gay couples legally married in their states, regardless of where they choose to reside. Nineteen states currently have legal same-sex marriage: eight by court decision, eight by state legislative action and three by popular vote. In this increasingly complex context, the 2012 General Assembly voted to neither reaffirm or change the PC(USA)’s definition of marriage, but asked the whole church to engage in a two-year period of “serious study and discernment” regarding Christian marriage. Seven overtures (resolutions) on the subject will be considered in Detroit: