Updated Saturday evening
The Episcopal Café reports on a Same sex wedding held in London church.
The complete order of service is available as a PDF file from there.
From tomorrow’s Sunday Telegraph Jonathan Wynne-Jones reports:
Some quotes from the Telegraph:
The Most Rev Henry Orombi, the Archbishop of Uganda, said that the ceremony was “blasphemous.” He called on Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, to take decisive action if the Anglican Church were not to “disintegrate”. Archbishop Orombi added: “What really shocks me is that this is happening in the Church of England that first brought the Gospel to us.
“The leadership tried to deny that this would happen, but now the truth is out. Our respect for the Church of England will erode unless we see a return to traditional teaching.”
The Rt Rev Michael Scott-Joynt, the Bishop of Winchester – a powerful conservative figure – said that the service represented a wedding “in all but name”. He said: “Strictly speaking it is not a marriage, but the language is clearly modelled on the marriage service and the occasion is modelled on the marriage service. This clearly flouts Church guidelines and will exacerbate divisions within the Anglican Communion.”
The bishop said that it was up to the Rt Rev Richard Chartres, the Bishop of London, to act, adding that it would become a high-profile test case of Church authority.
“Can we stand for the clear teaching of the Church of England or are we powerless in the face of these actions, which I regret enormously have taken place,” he said.
From the Mail on Sunday by Jonathan Petre:
Row as rector holds Britain’s first gay ‘wedding’ in an Anglican church and another copy with a slightly different headline here.
Some quotes from the Mail:
Tory MP Sir Patrick Cormack, a prominent Anglican, said: ‘This is extraordinary. I am surprised the rector of such an important church should act in apparent defiance of his bishop.’
Alison Ruoff, a member of the Church of England’s General Synod, said: ‘It is incredibly sad that people are prepared to sin against God and the Church.’
… Mr Dudley said he was unrepentant. He said he had written to Bishop Chartres 18 months ago for guidance on blessings for same-sex couples in civil partnerships, but was told the Church’s House of Bishops had not approved them.
‘Bishop Chartres asked me not to offer them and I do not offer them,’ he said.
‘But if close friends ask me to bless them, I do not say no.
‘It would be an act of hypocrisy to do anything else.
I was ordained alongside gay candidates of the priesthood and many of my clergy friends are gay, though I am not.’
He said he regarded the service as a blessing rather than a marriage and added that he was not worried about discipline because he had acted with integrity.
A Church spokesman said: ‘The Church of England is absolutely firm on the point that a marriage can only be between a man and a woman.
‘The Church has no liturgy for blessing same-sex unions.’
Agence France-Presse reports that:
A Church of England spokesman told AFP they had “no reason” to believe that the ceremony did not take place but added: “What we seem to have here is a fairly serious breach of the rules by an individual or groups of individuals.”
… The Church of England spokesman said he hoped the news would not affect relations between member churches, stressing: “The Church of England has not changed its rules (on the subject) at any stage.”
The Bishop of London, Richard Chartres, in whose diocese the ceremony took place, was unavailable for comment, his spokesman told AFP.