Statement on the vote count on Marriage Canon Resolution (A-051-R2)
BY MICHAEL THOMPSON ON JULY 13, 2016
The events leading to the passage, at first reading, of a motion to amend the Canon on Marriage so as to provide for the solemnization in the church of same-sex marriages are complex. On July 11, the motion was declared defeated in the order of clergy, where it appeared not to have achieved the necessary two-thirds majority in that order. The actual numbers recorded electronically were 51 in favour and 26 opposed. The motion did achieve that majority among the bishops and among the laity.
Please note the following correction from General Synod 2016 received just minutes ago:
A voting error reveals that a clergy vote was recorded as a lay vote. There was, in fact, a 2/3 clergy majority.
Three years ago, General Synod established a Commission to bring a resolution to change Canon XXI on marriage to allow the marriage of same-sex couples in the same way as opposite-sex couples.
After much consultation across the country engaging with those against and those in favour, same gender couples and heterosexual couples, youth and elderly, indigenous elders to name a few, the commission's report on the marriage canon, "This Holy Estate" provided us with a compelling mandate to move forward with an understanding of the sacrament of marriage that is inclusive for all people.
Your delegates along with the other members of General Synod have spent a good deal of time, in mixed discussion groups, debating the possible change. Although we have been asked to listen to each other with generous and open hearts some conversations have been difficult and painful and others in respectful dialogue.
Yesterday evening, Monday July 11th, General Synod voted. The motion had to pass by two thirds in each order to move to a second reading. In the order of bishop's and lay it passed but it was defeated by one vote in the order of clergy. When I return to Saskatoon I will discuss with our diocesan leadership what this means for us and the needs of the LGBTQ2 community in our diocese. The current marriage canon does not contain a definition of marriage or prohibit the solemnizing of same-sex marriage, according to the chancellor of General Synod, and diocesan bishops may exercise moral authority by authorizing liturgies to respond to pastoral needs within their diocese.
While I believe many will think, not changing the marriage canon, is good news there are others that will be greatly saddened that we could not walk together on this issue. Please remember In the life of the church there are no winners or losers. I pray that in the midst of the differences that exist God's grace will inspire us to continue to break bread together and walk humbly with our God.
I want to thank our delegates Mr. Chris Wood, Ms. Meghan Lofgren, Archdeacon Ken Watts and Rev. Alex Parsons who represented our diocese ably and well throughout this debate.
In God's peace,
Daily Report from the 41st General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada
BY GENERAL SYNOD COMMUNICATIONS ON JULY 7, 2016
The first day of General Synod commenced on July 7, 2016 at the Sheraton Parkway North Toronto Hotel and Suites in Richmond Hill, Ontario. General Synod members, guests, partners, staff and observers registered throughout the day.
Daily Report from the 41st General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada: Friday, July 8, 2016
Daily Report from the 41st General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada: Saturday, July 9, 2016
Daily Report from the 41st General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada: Sunday, July 10, 2016
Daily Report from the 41st General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada: Monday, July 11, 2016
BY GENERAL SYNOD COMMUNICATIONS ON JULY 11, 2016
Daily Report from the 41st General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada: Tuesday, July 12, 2016
BY GENERAL SYNOD COMMUNICATIONS ON JULY 12, 2016
A statement from The Ven. Dr. Michael Thompson, General Secretary
BY REV. JESSE DYMOND ON JULY 12, 2016