Anglican church of Canada backs same-sex marriage, a day after rejecting it

by Associated Press, July 13, 2016.

Photograph: David Lucas/Getty Images

Voting irregularities emerge after resolution in favour of gay marriage is defeated by just one vote at general synod.

A day after the Anglican Church of Canada
narrowly voted not to authorise same-sex marriage, questions about the
integrity of the voting process emerged, leading to a reversal of the

More than 200 delegates attending the six-day general synod 2016
narrowly rejected the resolution on Monday night after hearing from more
than 60 speakers, most of them in favour of gay marriage.

However, on Tuesday – the last day of the triennial conference – some
members stood up to say their ballot had not been recorded during
voting late on Monday, when the resolution failed to pass by a single

requested a detailed hard copy of the electronic voting records, which
led to a recount. Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the church then
declared the resolution in favour of same-sex marriage passed, a
resolution that aligns with secular Canada, which legalised same-sex
marriage in 2005.

In order for the resolution to pass, it requires two-thirds support from each of three orders – the lay, clergy and bishops.

Meghan Kilty, the director of communications for the Anglican Church
of Canada said on Tuesday 155 delegates voted in favour of the
resolution and 68 against it, with three members abstaining from the
vote. The initial result was one vote short of what was needed to pass
the measure in the Anglican church – the third-largest in Canada.

The initial outcome on Monday night, which followed a bitter and
divisive debate, stunned those on hand into silence. Some wept openly,
others embraced. Some were clearly in anguish.

Before the vote recount on Tuesday afternoon, Toronto’s archbishop on
Tuesday joined several other prominent clergymen who said they would
bless same-sex marriages in defiance of the narrow vote.

The general synod is held every three years, and the vote was the
culmination of work that began when the last general synod, the church’s
legislative body, asked a panel to come up with a draft motion.

About 1.6 million Canadians identify themselves as Anglican, according to Statistics Canada.

The US Episcopal Church, the Anglican body in the United States, is
alone among Anglican bodies in approving same-sex marriage and has faced
a backlash for its support. Earlier this year, Anglican leaders
temporarily restricted the role of the US Episcopal Church in their
global fellowship as a sanction over the American church’s acceptance of
gay marriage.

Other Anglican national churches in Brazil, South Africa, New Zealand
and Scotland have taken steps toward accepting same-sex relationships.

SOURCE: Associated Press