Thinking Anglicans

Committee scrutiny of Marriage bill continues

Updated again Friday morning

The Public Bill Committee meets again on Tuesday and Thursday this week.

Meanwhile, a further tranche of written submissions have been published. Among these:

Changing Attitude England

Supplementary evidence from Dr Augur Pearce

And from the previous tranche, this from Liberty, but also available from the Liberty website, here, and also an earlier version here.

Today the Telegraph reports (no byline) on a submission made by Patricia Morgan, which is available in full on the SPUC website (PDF).

The latest listing of amendments can be read here or as a PDF file.

Hansard record of Tuesday’s hearings:

The committee has now dealt with Clauses 1 to 8. It meets again on Thursday.

Another tranche of written submissions has been published, all listed here.

They include:

David Shepherd

TUC

Christians for Equal Marriage

SPUC (see item above about Patricia Morgan)

Hansard record of Thursday’s proceedings:

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Martin Reynolds
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Martin Reynolds

Augur sets aside Cantlow to make his case. Not something Prof Mark Hill will support, one guesses.

Otherwise it is a tour de force of the complexities of English law and the place of the CofE.

Iain McLean
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Iain McLean

I agree with Martin. The Pearce supplementary memo is a tour de force. If, as many think, Aston Cantlow was wrongly decided, then the C of E is a public authority, and parishioners should have a right to be married in their parish church. If the Church authorities find that repugnant, they have a very easy remedy: disestablishment. They cannot claim the benefits of establishment (bishops in Lords, exemption from charity law etc) and shirk the burdens (e.g. obligation to marry qualified parishioners).

badman
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badman

The headline arguments canvassed here are largely irrelevant – there WILL be same sex marriage in England and there will WILL be an en bloc opt out for the Church of England regardless of the views of individual parish clergy. Both these decisions have already been made politically and the die is cast. But Dr Augur Pearce’s paper is, despite pressing a point which has no prospects of success, a brilliant exposition of the history of marriage in the recent ecclesiastical law of England. I particularly like his well made point that the rights of parishioners are not represented by… Read more »

Craig Nelson
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Craig Nelson

Lies, damned lies and statistics:

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David Shepherd
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Dr. Augur Pearce claims that ‘the parish minister’s duty to officiate (in person or by a deputy, typically an assistant curate)’ at the solemnisation of any parishioner’s wedding is based on case law. He cites Argar v. Holdsworth (1758) 2 Lee 515 as his reference. Whatever are his credentials, in this he is wrong. As Philip Jones put it, ‘the case was not directly about Argar’s right to be married, but about Holdsworth’s duty to solemnise the marriage, his duty to obey the ordinary who issued the licence’. ‘Argar v Holdsworth does not positively deny the existence of a common… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
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From the above article and subsequent comments; is it not timely, now, to consider disestablishment?
Theocracies are not too popular elsewhere in the world in this day and age. Very few Provinces of the Anglican Communion are so intimately connected with the State. The C. of E. can’t have it both ways.

Feria
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Feria

Iain: ‘If, as many think, Aston Cantlow was wrongly decided, then the C of E is a public authority’ On a point of pedantry, which might actually be of considerable practical importance: the Aston Cantlow ruling was specifically that a Parochial Church Council is not a “public authority” for the purposes of the Human Rights Act. Even if that ruling is correct, the CofE centrally might still be a “public authority”. An even more interesting question in a similar vein is whether the Book of Common Prayer is still “annexed and joined” to an Act of Parliament, and if so,… Read more »

Scot Peterson
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Scot Peterson

Feria: nice point on PCCs v The Chuch. I would have thought, though, that the BCP was no longer primary legislation after the Worship and Doctrine Measure 1974. Do you think the reservations re the 1662 BCP retain it’s status? (Genuinely interested…)

Perry Butler
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Perry Butler

” Today’s Church in Wales is a voluntary society of Cranmerian Episcopalians similar in most respects to any other religious group”

You have to give it to Dr Augur Pearce when it comes to a turn of phrase! I shall look on my friends in the Church in Wales in a new light!

Savi Hensman
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Savi Hensman

I am in favour of disestablishment, but would think it worrying if the C of E were simply an organ of the state so that, for instance, it might be required to endorse the policies of whatever government is in power, from wars to public service cuts.

Father Ron Smith
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David Shepherd, in his wordy submission to the Parliamentary Bill Committee, harps on about the possibility of religious officiants being vulnerable to perse/prosecution if they conscientiously object to the conducting of Same Sex Marriages.

This has been so overwhelmingly refuted by academic as well as practising lawyers, that he really ought by now to realise that his fears are groundless. Hammering away at this propspective possibility brings more heat than light into the arguments surrounding S/S/Marriage.

David Shepherd
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Ron: 1. If the possibility of religious and legal sanctions against individual ministers was groundless and overwhelmingly refuted, explain why there is clause 2(2) protecting individual ministers from compulsion. 2. The EHRC (rather than a conservative think-tank), having sought a legal opinion, views the clause as an interference in the Article 9 rights of religious organisations. They are in favour of same-sex marriage, so what possible self-defeating motive would prompt them to be ‘hammering away at this prospective possibility’ in their own submissions. All I’ve done is to agree with the EHRC that the clause 2(2), as it stands, is… Read more »

Craig Nelson
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Craig Nelson

It all looks very complicated. Still there seem to be some very clever people on the committee – I’m sure they’ll sort it all out.

Feria
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Feria

Scot: ‘I would have thought, though, that the BCP was no longer primary legislation after the Worship and Doctrine Measure 1974. Do you think the reservations re the 1662 BCP retain it’s status? (Genuinely interested…)’ … I asked my original question because I genuinely don’t know the answer. There are a few pointers available: If one took schedule 2 to the Worship and Doctrine Measure at face value, then one would conclude that the preamble to the Act of Uniformity has been repealed, and therefore that the BCP is no longer annexed and joined to the Act of Uniformity, and… Read more »

Laurence Roberts
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Laurence Roberts

How can gay parishoners and the public be protected from this ?

I am offended.

Parliament has gone on and on about proecting antigay leaders — what about the lgbt parishoners and general public ?

Why should I or any one have to face immoral stuff like this ?

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2013/03/08/london-vicar-gay-marriage-is-a-sin-and-people-can-be-cured-from-being-gay/