Passage of SS Rites Appears Assured and Unlikely to Cause Controversy
If approved, as expected, at the church’s General Convention starting Thursday in Indianapolis, the liturgy would be the first such rite endorsed by a major denomination in the United States.
Advocates of the blessing - already written, down to the “We have gathered here today” and “I do” and the exchange of rings - stress that it is not a sacrament and would not confer “marriage” on the couple. (Emphasis mine)
So, if a married woman elects to have sex with a man who is not her husband, this is not technically adultery.
Episcopal Church law defines marriage as the union of man and woman, and there are no plans to change that this year.
THIS YEAR. Well, only in the non-technical sense as noted above.
Its passage would be a major advance for gay people within the 2 million-member denomination, says Bishop Charles E. Bennison Jr. of the Diocese of Pennsylvania.
And he should know. Having personal knowledge of the sexual abuse of a minor BY HIS BROTHER and failing to report it probably gave Mr. Bennison a leg up on insight into these things although someone should clue him in on that 2 million number.
On Monday, a committee of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) debated proposals to change its definition of marriage from “the union of a man and a woman” to “the union of two people,” and permit clergy to perform same-gender marriage in states where it is legal.
We are supposed to be members of the Church (capital C) universal. How can something be okay in areas where it has been secularly advanced and not in others? Either it is a blessed thing or not. Why doesn’t this set off bells among the leadership? Have any of them awakened to the thought that - we might be following the culture and not The Lord? It would be good if they listened to that still, small voice and turn back. You can ask the Pharoah’s army what happens when you fail to turn back.
In 2009, the General Convention, which meets triennially, also authorized her commission to develop a theological and cultural basis for blessing same-sex unions.
While acknowledging that Christianity and Judaism have long regarded homosexual relations as sinful, the commission report contends that some of those condemnations are rooted in ambiguous biblical passages.
Theological and cultural basis - I am pretty sure Paul already developed that basis thoroughly. Guess they didn’t like it.
Paul’s condemnation of “unnatural” sex acts in the Book of Romans, they say, might have been a condemnation of temple prostitution. And Leviticus’ command that homosexual acts be punished by stoning, while “difficult,” can be discounted as a byproduct of the “strict gender hierarchy of the ancient Mediterranean world.”
Might, difficult, can be discounted - makes one wonder if they have been fully admitted to the Fiction Writers Association.
However, Bishop Sean Rowe of the Episcopal Diocese of Northwestern Pennsylvania, based in Erie, said passage appeared assured “and unlikely to prove destructive.”
Guess this depends on your definition of destructive.
“That doesn’t mean we can make up anything we want to,” he said, “but the authority to accept what scripture means lies in the community of believers.”
Sure would be nice if it were the actual Christians who got to make those decisions.
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