Equal civil marriage: some developments

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Andrew Grice at the Independent reported yesterday Religious figures meet at conference to back plans to legalise civil gay marriage.

Religious figures who support gay marriage will today launch a fightback against church leaders who have come out against same-sex marriage.

Representatives from the Church of England, liberal Jews, the Quakers and the Unitarian and Free Church will join forces at Westminster to declare their backing for the Government’s plans to legalise civil gay marriage, which have provoked strong opposition from leaders of the Anglican and Catholic churches.

Some faiths want the Coalition to go further by giving churches the freedom to carry out religious same-sex marriage.

Those attending the conference will include Giles Fraser, a priest who resigned as Canon Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral last autumn following the Occupy protests; Dr Jeffrey John, the Dean of St Albans; Paul Parker, Recording Clerk for the Quakers; Rabbi Roderick Young; Derek McAuley, chief officer of the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches; and the Rev Sharon Ferguson, chief executive of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement…

The BBC had Labour host meeting of faith groups backing gay marriage.

Today the Evening Standard reports : Nick Clegg: Gay couples should have the right to marry in church, and also expresseseditorial support for this.

Gay couples could soon win the right to marry in churches in a historic step towards equality, Nick Clegg told the Evening Standard today.

In an exclusive interview before Saturday’s World Pride festival in London, the Deputy Prime Minister said he now believed religious organisations should be free to conduct same-sex weddings if they wish.

“This is a personal view at the moment, but I think that in exactly the same way that we shouldn’t force any church to conduct gay marriage, we shouldn’t stop any church that wants to conduct gay marriage,” said Mr Clegg…

And John Bingham at the Telegraph has Nick Clegg backs gay marriage in churches – in break with David Cameron pledge.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Thursday, 5 July 2012

________________________________________________________________

Contrary to the official (though unsigned) representation to the British Parliament by the Church of England, opposing the legalisation of Same-Sex Civil Marriage; we learn from the above posting on the U.K. ‘Thinking Anglicans’ site that a meeting with the English Labour Party on this issue will be attended by representatives of various religious organisations, including members of the Church of England.

Whereas the official (unsigned) Church of England opposition to Same-Sex Marriage would have disadvantaged other religious bodies who are desirous of the proposed measure for their own members; this group of religious representatives – including Anglicans, liberal Jews, the Quakers and the Unitarian and Free Church will join forces at Westminster to declare their backing for the Government’s plans to legalise civil gay marriage.

I’m glad to see the likes of Canon Giles Fraser and Dr. Jeffrey John as part of the Church of England delegation – together with leaders of other churches, intent on securing the legal right of Same-Sex persons to commit together as life-long partners in a Civil Marriage ceremony – to be followed, where possible (and according to the regulations of the Church concerned) in a religious ceremony.

Father Ron Smith, Christchurch, New Zealand

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About kiwianglo

Retired Anglican priest, living in Christchurch, New Zealand. Ardent supporter of LGBT Community, and blogger on 'Thinking Anglicans UK' site. Theology: liberal, Anglo-Catholic & traditional. regarding each person as a unique expression of Christ, and therefore lovable.
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One Response to Equal civil marriage: some developments

  1. Pingback: Clegg joins campaign for gay marriage in churchP « Queer Church News

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