Sunday, October 14, 2007

Ottawa Approves Blessings

From the Ottawa Citizen:

Ottawa Anglicans approved the blessing of same-sex marriages by a vote of 177 to 97 yesterday, the first diocese in Canada to support the blessings since the national church nixed them this summer...

...The diocese of Montreal is expected to debate a similar motion at its own annual meeting, or synod, next week.

Ottawa Bishop John Chapman said he welcomed yesterday's vote because it tells him where the diocese stands on the issue. However, he stressed that the final decision on whether to bless gay marriages still rests with him, and he expects to take his time making that decision. He wants to talk to other bishops, nationally and internationally, before going ahead with a policy.

"It's not helpful to walk alone. We're not afraid to walk alone, but we don't want to walk alone"...

...Yesterday's delicately-worded motion did not ask that gay couples be allowed to marry in an Anglican church, or even that their civil unions be blessed. It just asked that priests be given the right to approach the bishop for permission for such a blessing, should their parish approve. This way, priests and parishes who are not comfortable with gay marriage need not concern themselves with it...

...The motion

'Be it resolved that this Synod requests that the Bishop grant permission for clergy, whose conscience permits, to bless duly solemnized and registered civil marriages between same-sex couples, where one party is baptized; and that he authorizes an appropriate rite and guidelines for its use in supportive parishes.

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