The Anglican Journal has two stories in the aftermath of General Synod on marriage equality this week. Before stories refer to Archbishop Justin Welby.
Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, says he understands why some bishops have chosen to go ahead with the solemnization of same-sex marriages, even though the marriage canon (church law) cannot be officially changed until it is voted on again at General Synod 2019.
“As primate, I have no authority to say to a bishop, ‘You can’t do that and you must not do that,’ ” he said.
While the decision to move toward allowing same-sex marriage in the Canadian church will doubtless have repercussions across the 77-million-strong global Anglican Communion, Hiltz said he has yet to receive a response from either the Anglican Communion Office or Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby. He noted that the Church of England has only just wrapped up a meeting of its own General Synod.
He said he would send Welby a letter explaining what happened at synod and including the resolution on the marriage canon that passed its first reading.
In a statement released Friday, July 15, the bishops said they “publicly dissent” from the decision, which, they add, “imperils our full communion within the Anglican Church of Canada and with Anglicans throughout the world.”
The statement, a copy of which was sent to the Anglican Journal, also called on the primate, Archbishop Fred Hiltz, and Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby “to seek ways to guarantee our place within the Anglican Church of Canada and the Anglican Communion.”
Hiltz was not available for comment when contacted by the Journal.
The statement was signed by Bishop Stephen Andrews, of the diocese of Algoma; Bishop David Parsons, of the diocese of the Arctic, and Suffragan Bishop Darren McCartney, also of the diocese of the Arctic; Bishop Fraser Lawton, of the diocese of Athabasca; Bishop William Anderson, of the diocese of Caledonia; Bishop Michael Hawkins, of the diocese of Saskatchewan; and Bishop Larry Robertson, of the diocese of Yukon.