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Church of Scotland moving towards support of marriage equality

Church of Scotland moving towards support of marriage equality

UPDATE: results of Assembly meeting here

During the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, which began on Saturday, May 20th and will run until the 26th, a report will be how to study marriage equality in the church. The report will be presented by the Theological Forum, and asks the Church to apologize to the LGBTQI+ community “individually and corporately.” The report also asks the Kirk to consider its stance on same-sex marriage, which it currently does not condone. The report is “going to be asking our legal questions committee to see what the issues are round about allowing ministers to perform same sex marriage if they choose to do so, and equally for safeguards for those who, for conscience sake, feel that this is not something they can do,” says Moderator the Reverend Dr Derek Browning. Scotland itself made same-sex marriage legal in 2014. The Church of Scotland remains divided on the issue, but the report represents a step towards greater acceptance of LGBTQI+ people.

The Church of Scotland is not an Anglican church, but is Presbyterian. However, in February, the Kirk and the Church of England approved a formal agreement between the two churches, recognizing their long ecumenical history and parallel roles as national churches. The Church of England, of course, does not allow marriage equality, although later this year, the Scottish Episcopal Church is expected to approve marriage equality in its General Synod.

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Roel Bosch

Thanks, Ann and friends for keeping us abroad updated! And Kelvin and others for finetuning the reports. And Ann, I had to look it up, snark is a word that might be useful also in other languages...

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Kelvin Holdsworth

Oh, and Derek Browning is the Moderator, not the Moderator Designate.

7 substantive errors in 8 sentences.

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Ann Fontaine

Thanks for your help with this Kelvin - I know it is frustrating to work with us who are so ignorant of your names and titles. I know I feel that way every time I see that TEC has "appointed" a bishop here or other reports with errors about our polity. Remember we are volunteers not church experts and most have other jobs that take up our days. Your help is great - snark is discouraging. There are only 5 editors for The Lead. We appreciate correction and hope we can learn from your expertise.

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Kelvin Holdsworth

Perhaps I might offer some corrections.

1 The Church of Scotland will not receive a report on discrimination against LGBTQI +people. It is being invited to receive a report on how to study so-called same-sex marriage.

2 The report comes from the Theological Forum, not the theological committee.

3 The church is being asked to consider making an apology to gay people, not to LGBTQI+ people.

4 There really is no deliverance (like a motion) at this Assembly which could fairly be interpreted as moving the Church of Scotland towards marriage equality. Marriage equality really isn't on the agenda this year.

5 The February in which the Kirk and the Church of England came to their agreement was February 2016, not February 2017

6 It is the Scottish Episcopal Church not the Episcopal Church of Scotland.

The report itself is online and well worth reading.

http://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/39573/Theological_Forum.pdf

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Philip B. Spivey

Kelvin: I learned recently, in humility, that posting unearned criticism goes counter to the spirit of Christian fellowship. I learned that I could disagree with anything published here, but any revisions I might recommend can be shared with the editor in Christian charity; a quick email to the editor will probably do the trick.

"Our vines have tender grapes."

Peace.

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Ann Fontaine

Thanks Kelvin for your help sorting this out.

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