Decision in the Church of England: Not marrying gay couples

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The recommendations, which establish the church’s teaching that holy marriage exists only between a man and a woman, were finalized by the church’s bishops on Tuesday.

Same-sex couples can – although they are not allowed to be married by priests in the Church of England – “come to the church to give thanks for their civil marriage or civil partnership and receive God’s blessing”, it said in a statement.


The issue will not be put to a vote in the church’s General Synod, the decision-making and legislative body, when it meets in London in February. However, the new recommendations will probably be presented during the meeting.

The church plans to apologize to LGBTQI people for the “rejection, exclusion and hostility” they have faced in churches.

“Both personally and on behalf of my fellow bishops, I would like to express deep sadness and grief at the way LGBTQI people and their loved ones have been treated by the Church,” said the Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell.

– We are deeply saddened and ashamed and want to take the opportunity to start over in the spirit of repentance that our faith teaches us, he continues.

Diversity of opinion

The consultations of recent years have shown the diversity of views within the Church of England regarding sexuality, relationships and marriage, says Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury.

— I have no illusions that what we are proposing today will be considered going too far for some, and not nearly enough for others. But it is our hope that what we have agreed on will be received in a spirit of generosity, he says.

Same-sex marriage has been legal in England and Wales since 2013.