Anglican Church of New Zealand ‘exploring ways’ to bless same-sex relationships

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The Anglican Church in New Zealand is “exploring ways” to bless same-sex relationships.

A regional synod meeting in Waitagi was held last week in which Archbishops Brown Turei, Philip Richardson and Winston Halapua stated: “The Synod is committed to ongoing talking as it considers change to follow the mandate of Christ to love one another at all times.”

The Church said it wanted to keep the ‘traditional’ sanctity of marriage but still embrace “committed relationships between two people, that tell of the love of Christ, regardless of gender”.

New Zealand’s Marriage Amendment Bill, allowing same-sex marriage was passed by Parliament over a year ago.

Many in the country have called on the Church to formally bless same-sex relationships and hope it could lead to the official approval of same-sex marriages.

However, a change in position is still seen as a long way off.

In an exclusive interview with PinkNews, Justin Welby, the symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican Communion refused to be drawn on the issue of gay clergy marrying their partners, except to say that it was “a really difficult” situation.

“I have commented very extensively on that and I’m not going to add to what I have said already because we are in the middle of a … we have just started a really complex series of discussions about that and I don’t want to pre-empt that.”

Asked if he ‘understood’ how gay clergy might feel about the Church’s current opposition to them marrying, Archbishop Welby told PinkNews.co.uk: “I do understand. It’s a really difficult and troubling situation.”



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