The Church Times article by Will Adam which was previously subscriber-only is now available to all: Breaking the rules on gay marriage.
PICTURE the scene: the Bishop’s post is being opened, and among the invitations, job applications, and clerical outfitters’ catalogues are three troubling pieces of correspondence.
The first is from the Diocesan Director of Ordinands, informing the Bishop that an ordinand in training, who is in the process of looking for a title post in the diocese, has entered into a same-sex marriage.
The second is a letter of complaint from a group of parishioners that the Vicar of X has just used the form of service for prayer and dedication after a civil marriage from Common Worship: Pastoral Services to bless a same-sex marriage in church.
The third is from the churchwarden of Y to say that the Rector has just come back from holiday with the news that the trip was a honeymoon, and a new (same-sex) spouse has moved into the Rectory.
What is the Bishop to do?
This week’s Church Times carries a report by Madeleine Davies headlined Bishops start quizzing their clergy.
Gay clergy have this week been describing the ramifications of the pastoral guidance on same-sex marriage, issued by the House of Bishops last month. Bishops have begun meeting gay clergy, at least five of whom are reported to be planning to marry…
And there is a report in the Camden New Journal Two Camden vicars to defy Church of England ban on blessing same-sex marriages.
…In what could become a test case, the Rev Anne Stevens, of St Pancras New Church, in Euston, and Father Andrew Cain, of St James’s in West Hampstead and St Mary’s in Kilburn, will campaign for the law to be changed.
Blessing services will be offered at St Pancras church, with prayers and thanksgiving at St James’s, when the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013 comes in on March 29.
Under the act there is a “quadruple lock” that prevents the marriages or blessing the marriages of gay couples in the Church of England.
More Camden churches are expected to follow their lead with a letter signed by local clergy due to be released next week…
Andrew Symes has written at Anglican Mainstream Same sex marriage – are we allowed to pray about it? Try to ignore his comment about the weather.
There is a very interesting exchange of views about the Pilling report between Sean Doherty and Malcolm Brown.
See A Response to the Pilling Report and then A response to Sean Doherty’s KLICE Comment on the Pilling Report The latter explains quite a lot about how the report was written.