Magazine article Anglican Journal

Bishops Discuss Marriage Canon

Magazine article Anglican Journal

Bishops Discuss Marriage Canon

Article excerpt

The House of Bishops met in Quebec City from Oct. 24 to 29 with their counterparts from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada and reviewed the Joint Assembly held by the two churches in Ottawa last July.

Following the meeting, Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, told the Anglican Journal that generally Anglican bishops considered the time for the Anglican General Synod meetings within the five-day event too short to accomplish all that needed to be done and discussed.

Prominent in the Anglican bishops' conversations were discussions of a controversial resolution that asks the Council of General Synod (CoGS) to draft a motion--to be considered by the 2016 General Synod--to amend the marriage canon. The amendment would allow same-sex couples to marry, with a conscience clause that would exempt any congregation, diocese, clergy or bishops who object from participating.

"There's been a huge effort in the life of the church to talk about this as a pastoral response, not a change of doctrine, and now it feels like the ground has shifted," Hiltz said. The change to a question of doctrine creates difficulties in dioceses where bishops "have worked really hard to hold all voices and all people together," and where some people are asking how this shift happened. The motion, he noted, came from individual members of General Synod.

While the issue rias peen divisive, the primate said he did not have a sense of lines hardening within the House of Bishops. …

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