Anglican bishops’ conference raises disagreement on marriage resolution


Anglican Communion leaders will no longer consider a measure that would reaffirm the biblical definition of marriage as being between one man and one woman at their decennial conference following an outcry from theological liberals.
Shortly before the beginning of the Lambeth Conference in London, a major gathering of Anglican bishops that happens roughly every 10 years and will run from July 26 to Aug 8, organisers announced significant changes to a resolution that would have reaffirmed a 1998 statement opposing same-sex marriage.
In the days leading up to the conference, there was much outcry from liberal attendees over the inclusion of a resolution that would define marriage as being exclusively “between a man and a woman.”
The original draft language of the resolution, known as the Lambeth Call on Human Dignity, called for “a reaffirmation of Lambeth I.10 that upholds marriage as between a man and a woman and requires deeper work to uphold the dignity and witness of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) Anglicans.”
On Tuesday, the conference shared updated language of the Lambeth Call on Human Dignity that is more neutral in rhetoric, noting that some provinces in the communion affirm same-sex marriage while others do not.
“Many provinces continue to affirm that same gender marriage is not permissible, states the present text.
Lambeth Resolution I.10 (1998) states that the step ‘legitimising or blessing of same sex unions’ cannot be advised.
“Other provinces have blessed and welcomed same sex union/marriage after careful theological reflection and a process of reception.
“As bishops, we remain committed to listening and walking together to the maximum possible degree, despite our deep disagreement on these issues.”
The revision came in response to “widespread responses from bishops and others.”
At first, attendees were told they could only respond to the call by either accepting it or saying that they felt it “requires further discernment.”
Bishop Tim Thornton, the chair of the Lambeth Conference’s Lambeth Calls subgroup, said in a statement that the committee listened carefully and prayerfully to what bishops and many others have said in response to the draft calls, especially that on human Dignity.
“Archbishop Justin has invited the bishops of the Anglican Communion to come together as a family to listen, pray and discern – sometimes across deeply-held differences,” Thorton said.
The Lambeth Conference has always been a significant event, in the life of the Anglican Communion and wider church.
– The Christian Post