Anglican Bishops narrowly reject gay marriage - Saga Gist - Top Source for Nigeria News


Sunday, July 14

Anglican Bishops narrowly reject gay marriage

By just one vote, a move to amend the marriage canon was defeated at the 42nd General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada on Friday.

By the decision, the church will continue to maintain its traditional definition of marriage.

Resolution A052-R2 would have amended the marriage canon to allow for same-sex marriage. But it failed to pass by a two-thirds majority in all three orders.

While two-thirds of the Order of Laity (80.9%) and Order of Clergy (73.2%) voted in favour, less than the required two-thirds (62.2%) voted in favour of the resolution in the Order of Bishops.

The final results of the vote, which took place on the evening of July 12 at the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre, were as follows: The Order of Laity saw 89 members (80.9%) vote Yes and 21 members (19.1%) vote No, with one abstention. The Order of Clergy had 60 members (73.2%) voting Yes, 22 members (26.8%) voting No, and two abstentions. In the Order of Bishops, 23 members (62.2%) voted Yes and 14 members (37.8%) voted No, with two abstentions.

The announcement of the result left many synod members visibly in shock, Anglican Ink reported.

“A scream could be heard. Many members began crying, and one young delegate ran out of the room in tears”, the online news platform said.

There are indications that the resolution may still be re-introduced before the synod completes its business on 16 July.

According to Anglican Ink, General Synod’s rules of procedure may leave room for the subject of same-sex marriage to return to the floor.

Resolution A052-R2 to amend the marriage canon, as put forward at General Synod 2019, served as the second reading for the amendment following a first reading at General Synod 2016. The resolution declared that Canon XXI, On Marriage in the Church, “applies to all persons who are duly qualified by civil law to enter into marriage.”

It would have changed the wording of the canon to replace all references to “man and woman” and “husband and wife” with “the parties to the marriage.”

The amended marriage canon, based on the resolution, would also have stated that “a minister may only solemnise a marriage between persons of the same sex if authorised by the diocesan bishop.”

Earlier in the day, General Synod members voted to amend the original Resolution A052 to add two paragraphs to the preface of Canon XXI. The first stated that “faithful members of the Anglican Church of Canada have different understandings and teachings about the nature of marriage,” and that Anglicans are entitled to hold different views provided they “recognize and respect” that others may, with integrity, hold different views.

The second paragraph stated that General Synod “recognizes that Indigenous communities have particular understandings about the nature of marriage as well as their own ways of making decisions,” and that Indigenous people “will continue to discern whether same-sex marriage would be acceptable in their communities.”

A motion to divide this amendment and vote on each paragraph separately failed to pass, with 153 members (66.8%) voting No, 76 members (33.2%) voting Yes, and three abstaining. The original motion to amend Resolution A052 with both paragraphs subsequently carried, with 206 voting Yes (89.6%), 24 voting No (10.4%), and two members abstaining.

Another resolution passed during the afternoon, Resolution A101-R1, that adopted the affirmations in the document A Word to the Church concerning the amendments to Canon XXI on marriage. General Synod voted strongly in favour of this motion, with 196 members voting Yes (84.85%), 35 members voting No (15.15%), and two abstentions.

According to Resolution A101-R1, General Synod “affirms the right of Indigenous people and communities to spiritual self-determination” in their decisions regarding same-sex marriage; affirms that bishops and synods in the Anglican Church of Canada hold diverse understandings of the existing marriage canon; and affirms that there is a diversity of understandings and teachings about marriage within the church, and that these are held with “prayerful integrity.”

The resolution also affirms the commitment of the General Synod to presume good faith among those who hold diverse understandings and teachings. Finally, it affirms the commitment of the General Synod to walk together and preserve communion with each other, in Christ, within the church and the Anglican Communion, and with ecumenical partners.

* Culled from Anglican Ink