DOING YOUR BIT FORMARRIAGE EQUALITY IN ENGLAND

Although I believe that priests should be able to speak out on any matter they feel compelled to without being victimised by their bishops, I do not believe that priests should marry same sex couples in their churches unless they have the express permission of their bishops. Therefore, for those priests who are embarrassed by the fact that every time they conduct a wedding service involving a heterosexual couple they are letting down their gay brothers and sisters in Christ, I would like to suggest the following alteration to the marriage service:

The Common Worship wording, as it stands at present is:

Marriage is a gift of God in creation through which husband and wife may know the grace of God. It is given that as man and woman grow together in love and trust, they shall be united with one another in heart, body and mind, as Christ is united with his bride, the Church.

The gift of marriage brings husband and wife together in the delight and tenderness of sexual union and joyful commitment to the end of their lives. It is given as the foundation of family life in which children are [born and] nurtured and in which each member of the family, in good times and in bad, may find strength, companionship and comfort, and grow to maturity in love.

Instead of that, try this:

Marriage is a gift of God in creation through which a married couple may know the grace of God. It is given that as two people grow together in love and trust, they shall be united with one another in heart, body and mind, as Christ is united with his bride, the Church.

The gift of marriage brings the married couple together in the delight and tenderness of sexual union and joyful commitment to the end of their lives. It is given as the foundation of family life in which children may be nurtured and in which each member of the family, in good times and in bad, may find strength, companionship and comfort, and grow to maturity in love.

I strongly suggest that you get the permission of the couple being married before altering the words. We are not in the business of ruining wedding days over a matter of principle. However, my guess is that many couples will be as willing to do their bit for human rights as you are.

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DOING YOUR BIT FORMARRIAGE EQUALITY IN ENGLAND — 8 Comments