Thursday, July 12, 2007

Church can’t remain divided, say youth

Churchgoers at St. Philip’s in north Oak Bay [British Columbia] – just like Anglicans around the world – are divided on whether same-sex unions should be blessed. Parishioner Ernest Morrow said polarization exists even among young adults.

The difference, he said, is the younger parishioners are more "socially acclimatized" to gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender rights.

They are also interested in reconciliation, he said.

"There's a real sense of we’ve got to work this through together," Morrow said.

St. Philips parishioners with strong and unwavering opposition to the church blessing same-sex marriages have been part of a cautious dialogue with supporters of changing church doctrine. Those supporters include a married gay couple at the church.

Despite the possibilities for outright fighting in the congregation, Morrow said the conversations have been "very decent."

"Because these are matters of faith, it's been very, very intense," he said, but "there's graceful disagreement."

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