UPDATE: Please read Archbishop Melissa's pastoral letter on this matter, dated July 17, 2019

On Friday night, the 12th of July, General Synod voted on the second reading of the revised Marriage Canon (Canon XXI). The revised Canon would have permitted Anglican clergy to officiate at the marriage of same-sex couples. The revised Canon required two-thirds support in all three orders of General Synod: the laity, the clergy (presbyters and deacons) and the bishops.

81% of the laity and 73% of the clergy voted in favour. The majority of the bishops (62%) were in favour of the revised Canon. However, the majority in the bishops was insufficient to enact the revised Canon.

Earlier in the Synod a resolution was passed to include the affirmations from 'A Word to the Church', a statement of the Council of General Synod on the proposed revision of the Marriage Canon. These affirmations acknowledge that our Church has many different understandings of marriage as an expression of God's grace. The affirmations imply that diocesan bishops may choose to authorize same-sex marriages in their dioceses despite lasr night's vote.

Archbishop Skelton has indicated that she will be issuing a statement later this month regarding how we as a diocese shall go forward following the vote.  This statement will be available on Sunday July 21st.. 

It is important to recognise that we can and we will disagree about how we live our lives as disciples of Jesus, but we will not abandon our commitment to Jesus as Lord and the covenant of our baptism.

The following quotation from Fr Alex Wilson beautifully sums up where I feel the church needs to be:

"No matter your place in this conversation, no matter your theology, feelings, thoughts, or pain, you belong here. Nothing can separate you from the love of God. No vote of Synod, no motion, no statement, no human. Nothing. You are named, loved, and seen by God, and I will continue to work to ensure that our parish remains a safe, inclusive, and welcoming place for all of God's people"


Philippa Segrave-Pride, Interim Vicar