Friday, 15 June 2007

Retired Canadian Primates urge 'yes' vote for same-sex blessings

As Canada's Anglican Church prepares for its historic – and possibly schismatic – decision on blessing homosexual unions, six of its most senior clerics Thursday called for a yes vote that would show “justice, compassion and hope for all God's people.”

The declaration from the half-dozen retired archbishops from across the country reveals a sharp division in the church's hierarchy.

While the archbishops said that blessing the unions of same-sex couples does not touch on the church's “core doctrine,” last month the national House of Bishops issued a pastoral statement saying that the “doctrine and discipline of our church does not clearly permit [same-sex blessings].”

The vote will be taken at the church's general synod, or parliament, meeting next week in Winnipeg.

The archbishops' statement is signed by John Bothwell, Terence Finlay and Percy O'Driscoll, all former metropolitans, or chief bishops, of Ontario; David Crawley and David Somerville, former metropolitans of British Columbia; and Arthur Peters, former metropolitan of Quebec and the Atlantic provinces. Read more

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