Comments: Equal Marriage: recent developments

"A total of 1,409 marriages were formed between same sex couples between 29 March and 30 June 2014. Of these, 56% of marriages were to female couples (796 marriages) while 44% were to male couples (613 marriages)."

Does ONS use the same rather bizarre language as to heterosexual marriages?

Jack and Jill "formed a marriage"?

The "marriage was to" Susan and Bill?

Or are these expressions reserved for same-sex couples?

Posted by Jeremy at Saturday, 23 August 2014 at 9:30pm BST

At this rate the C of E's current position will become unsustainable. It will only take a few more clergy brave enough to defy the current threat of being being ostracised for the Bishops to have to cave in.

I await the 10th December with interest.

Posted by Concerned Anglican at Saturday, 23 August 2014 at 9:42pm BST

The Marriage Canon of the Canadian Church is currently under review in terms of same sex marriage. The process has institutional anxiety written all over it, but at least the issue is being pursued. Expatriate Canucks across the pond may wish to make a submission.

http://www.anglican.ca/about/ccc/cogs/cmc/


Posted by Rod Gillis at Sunday, 24 August 2014 at 3:54am BST

I agree with Concerned Anglican. Interesting that Welby has here played a relatively subtler game in leaving it to individual bishops to decide what to do.

Posted by John at Sunday, 24 August 2014 at 10:04am BST

I love the phrase 'institutional anxiety', although for the CofE 'panic' might be more appropriate.

Posted by Richard Ashby at Sunday, 24 August 2014 at 2:20pm BST

"Expatriate Canucks across the pond may wish to make a submission."

Just to clarify, submissions are invited from communicants of the Anglican Church of Canada. It's possible some expats remain on the rolls of their parishes at home but I suspect that most have parish affiliations where they live.

Posted by Geoff at Monday, 25 August 2014 at 7:19am BST

An interesting question is what has happened to the numbers of civil partnerships. In 2012 (last year for which statistics are currently available) there were exactly 2000 in the corresponding period. If people are still entering into CPs in any reasonable numbers, then the eventual case for the extension of CPs to opposite sex couples will be strong. On the other hand, if CP numbers collapse, then there will be pressure to discontinue them altogether. Either way, a lose-lose situation for the current position taken by the C of E.

Posted by Turbulent priest at Monday, 25 August 2014 at 7:59am BST

"If people are still entering into CPs in any reasonable numbers, then the eventual case for the extension of CPs to opposite sex couples will be strong."

There is no case, outside the chattering classes, for the extension of CPs to different-sex couples. The whole point about CPs was that they were marriage in all but name: Labour, for bad but understandable reasons, didn't fancy the fight with the CofE that it's actually much easier for the Tories to have. Labour would have been accused of militant atheism, which is a much harder accusation to make stick against the Tories. Labour is also much more worried about the opinion of mosque committees than the Tories.

CPs give the same rights, plus or minus, as marriage. The only reason to have a CP rather than a civil marriage is because you don't like the word "marriage", and the law should not trouble itself with nomenclature: the essence of the relationship is precisely the same. The argument that there should be some legal structure for, say, co-habiting siblings is not an argument for CPs as constituted, as the prohibited degrees apply.

As I've said before, if people are that hung up about the word "marriage", they can just get a civil marriage and call it something else when they tell their friends. Let's not waste parliamentary time for a trivial nomenclature issue that most people grow out of.

Posted by Interested Observer at Monday, 25 August 2014 at 10:08am BST

RE Turbulent priest's observation that "(e)ither way, a lose-lose situation for the current position taken by the C of E;" this is hardly the first time for that. But they'll do as they've always done: pretend it ain't so, and ignore reality until a new bench of bishops feels the "new" state of affairs can safely be mentioned obliquely, although without daring to suggest a change to the canons that might offend hardliners long dead.

Posted by Daniel Berry, NYC at Monday, 25 August 2014 at 4:08pm BST

The sheer number of Same Sex Marriages must surely cause the hierarchy of the National Church to re-consider its policy towards such persons? The alternative is to ignore them, thus occasioning more questioning of the pastoral role of the Church.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Thursday, 28 August 2014 at 10:09pm BST
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