It was clear at the ‘committee of the whole’ meeting in the House of Deputies yesterday that the majority are ready to move forward and take a position which honors whoever God calls to the episcopacy. However there were words of caution and dismay – requests to move more slowly, and to attend to the concerns of Anglicans in other provinces. These concerns are amplified in the House of Bishops. Bishops are closer to their colleagues in other provinces and so feel torn between those relationships and their relationship with LGBT people in their dioceses. If a resolution passes that ends the moratorium it is believed likely to exacerbate the tension within the Anglican Communion.
The World Mission Committee has labored long and hard to find a resolution that has a chance of passing. (Resolutions have to be agreed by both Houses with exactly the same wording.) This morning they came up with a possibility. They did not agree unanimously and we salute their courage in going ahead even though they don’t have agreement from all the committee members – two of the six bishops on the committee voted for the final version of D025 amended from that proposed by Deputy Rebecca Snow of Alaska (Rebecca, who is a lawyer, was on the Special Committee in 2006 so is well-versed in the niceties of Anglican Communion speak.) You can read the text here.
We expect the House of Deputies to take up the resolution on Monday. But we have been expecting the House of Bishops to take up B012 (which would allow blessing of marriages in those states where civil marriage is a possibility for same gender couples) for a couple of days…Perhaps today? Stay tuned.