Thinking Anglicans

Porvoo consultation on marriage

From 1 to 4 November, the Churches of the Porvoo Communion held a consultation in Turku, Finland on the Churches’ teaching on marriage. Delegates represented the Anglican Churches in England, Ireland and Scotland, and the Lutheran Churches in Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. Observers were present from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Latvia, the Lutheran Church in Great Britain, and the Latvian Lutheran Church Abroad.

Read more about this:

Church of Ireland Gazette High-level Porvoo Communion consultation on marriage

…The Archbishop of Dublin, the Most Revd Michael Jackson, and the Bishop of Cashel and Ossory, the Rt Revd Michael Burrows, attended from the Church of Ireland. Archbishop Jackson had been invited to give a series of Bible studies and Bishop Burrows acted as a Group Convener.

Each member-Church of the Porvoo Communion was invited to submit copies of its marriage liturgies and regulations. Dr Jackson told the Gazette that this material, together with lectures on the interpretation of biblical passages related to marriage, on theological arguments surrounding the issue of same- sex marriage, and on aspects of human genetics “gave scope and shape to the discussions”.

The Archbishop said that in a climate of “tension” relating to marriage practice across the Churches of the Porvoo Communion, the consultation had been conducted “in a spirit of attentive listening and courteous interchange of ideas and experiences”.

Bishop David Hamid Anglicans and Lutherans in Northern Europe meet to discuss the doctrine of marriage

…During the days together members from each Church shared their official teaching on marriage, as well as their pastoral experiences. There were also presentations covering aspects of the scriptural foundations for marriage, the development of doctrine, and human genetics.

The consultation concluded that differences over the introduction of same-sex marriage remain unresolved. The Churches hold a variety of views and pastoral practices along a theological spectrum. Some believe same sex marriage to be a legitimate development in the Christian tradition, whilst others see the potential for a serious departure from the received tradition. Nevertheless the consultation affirmed the benefits of “belonging to one another” and the value of honest encounter. The strong relationship of the Porvoo Communion, provides a “platform of sustained communication in the face of issues which raise difficulties for [the Churches]”

The full text of the communique issued can be found here (PDF).


Danish church moves ahead with same-sex weddings

The Copenhagen Post reports: Church weddings for gays proposed.

Homosexual church marriages could become a reality by next summer if a bill giving them equal status with heterosexual unions passes parliament.
“It’s historic, it’s the biggest thing since female ministers were allowed in the Folkekirken,” Manu Sareen (Radikale), the church and equality minister, told the media today.

After years of opposition to granting homosexual unions the same status as heterosexual unions, Folkekirken bishops are developing a new wedding rite that will enable vicars to wed homosexuals.

“I think that most people in the Folkekirken are happy that there is finally a political decision on which way to proceed,” the bishop of Copenhagen, Peter Skov-Jakobsen, told Politiken.

“But I also think there are some people who will be disappointed that the distinction between marriage and partnership will disappear.”

An earlier newspaper report is here: Minister: Gay weddings by next year.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark has an English website. It signed the Porvoo Agreement in October 2010.