On my wedding day, our officiant, the pastor from my husband’s historic African American church in downtown Lexington, started our ceremony by citing Guru Amar Das Pyaare Ji of the Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji. He quoted, “They are not said to be husband and wife, who merely sit together. They alone are called husband and wife, who have one light in two bodies.” This message is central to the Sikh approach to understanding marriage.

Contrary to the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee and the Sikh Rehat Maryada (Code of Conduct) that states, “Persons professing faiths other than the Sikh faith cannot be joined in wedlock by the Anand Karaj ceremony,” I took ownership of my sexuality and decided whom I would marry. The Sikh Rehat Maryada dictates that “when a girl becomes marriageable, physically, emotionally and by virtue of maturity of character, a...

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