Church of England submits blessings for same-sex couples to fierce debate in Synod

by | Feb 3, 2023 | Religion

LONDON (RNS) — This coming week promises to be one of the most historic — and controversial — in the life of the Church of England, as its governing body, General Synod, heads toward a resolution of a long debate over blessings of same-sex couples.After years of wrangling over how the church should deal with homosexuality, its bishops announced in mid-January that they would not agree to same-sex marriage but were prepared to bless civil unions. They followed with an apology for the way that LGBTQI+ people were treated by the Church of England.
Beginning Monday, the three voting houses of bishops, clergy and laity will discuss and vote on the proposals in an all-church body known as Synod.
The deepest split on the issue has been between evangelicals vehemently against moving away from what they call the biblical concept of marriage as being between a man and a woman and those campaigning for full equality, who are frustrated by the bishops’ willingness to recognize their mistreatment of LGBTQ members, while being unwilling to offer them marriage.
Also frustrated are members of the House of Commons advocating for the established church to endorse marriage for same-sex couples, which has been legal in England and Scotland since 2014. (Northern Ireland followed in 2020.) Last week 14 MPs met with Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby to express dismay at what the …

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