New Westminster bishop Michael Ingham wants the Anglican Church to rethink its positions on sexuality. Under threat of expulsion from the greater Anglican Communion, the Canadian House Of Bishops issued a statement May 2, recommending that the Anglican Church Of Canada ban the blessing of same-sex unions at its general synod next month in Winnipeg.
The Anglican Church Of Canada has been under pressure to ban same-sex blessings since a meeting of the Anglican Communion, held in Tanzania in February, issued an ultimatum to the US Episcopalian Church demanding it stop blessing gay unions and ordaining gay bishops, or face expulsion.
The statement from the bishops was quickly blasted by Integrity Canada, a group working for the full inclusion of gays and lesbians in the Anglican Church.
The irony of looming schism in the Anglican Church over the issue of marriage is not lost on Ingham, given that the Church Of England was born after Henry VIII cut ties with Roman Catholicism because pope Clement VII would not grant Henry a divorce in 1533.
"It's partly because we have an Archbishop Of Canterbury [Rowan Williams, the head of the Anglican Church] that comes from the Catholic wing of Anglicanism, and he would like to see the church take a decision on this globally rather than locally, which is not the Anglican tradition."
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