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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Church of England blesses same-sex {couples} for the primary time, however they nonetheless cannot wed in church

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LONDON — Church of England monks supplied formally sanctioned blessings of same-sex partnerships for the primary time on Sunday, although a ban on church weddings for homosexual {couples} stays in place amid deep divisions inside world Anglicanism over marriage and sexuality.

In one of many first ceremonies, the Rev. Catherine Bond and the Rev. Jane Pearce had their union blessed at St John the Baptist church, in Felixstowe, japanese England, the place each are affiliate monks.

The couple knelt in entrance of Canon Andrew Dotchin, who held their heads as he gave “thanks for Catherine and Jane, to the love and friendship they share, and their dedication to at least one one other as they arrive earlier than you on this present day.”

The church’s nationwide meeting voted in February to permit clergy to bless the unions of same-sex {couples} who’ve had civil weddings or partnerships. The phrases used for the blessings, often called prayers of affection and religion, have been authorized by the church’s Home of Bishops on Tuesday and used for the primary time on Sunday.

The compromise was struck following 5 years of discussions in regards to the church’s place on sexuality. Church leaders supplied an apology for the church’s failure to welcome LGBTQ folks, but additionally endorsed the doctrine that marriage is the union of 1 man and one lady. Clergy gained’t be required to carry out same-sex blessings in the event that they disagree with them.

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The blessings can be utilized in common church providers. The church’s governing physique has additionally drawn up a plan for separate “providers of prayer and dedication” for same-sex {couples} that might resemble weddings, nevertheless it has not but been formally authorized.

Public opinion surveys persistently present {that a} majority of individuals in England assist same-sex marriage, which has been authorized since 2013. The church didn’t alter its educating on marriage when the regulation modified.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby has stated he gained’t personally bless any same-sex {couples} as a result of it’s his job to unify the world’s 85 million Anglicans. Welby is the non secular chief of each the Church of England and the worldwide Anglican Communion of which it’s a member.

A number of Anglican bishops from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Pacific stated after the February choice that they now not acknowledge Welby as their chief.

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