The lawyer who persuaded Rubin to forgo an appeal was Matt Coles, then the director of the Lesbian and Gay Rights Project for the American Civil Liberties Union.
The couple have been active in their quest for legal recognition of same-sex marriages for years. Even before the lawsuit, they traveled with other couples each year to the Hillsborough County Clerk's Office on Valentine's Day and ask for a marriage license. When refused, they asked the clerk to read aloud the state law prohibiting legal recognition of their union.
Metropolitan Community Church was founded in 1968 as a ministry for people who are gay, lesbian, transgender and bisexual. They make up about 90 percent of the congregation today.