Three years ago, the triennial General Convention of the Episcopal Church passed B033, a resolution that effectively declared a moratorium on ordaining gays and lesbians in same-sex relationships. The resolution did not stop the conservative schismatics from going ahead and establishing their own denomination, but neither did it intensify conflict over homosexuality with the worldwide Anglican Communion. This year, meeting in Anaheim, the Convention seems on the point of bringing the moratorium to an end–and let relations with the Communion be what they may.
Yesterday, the Convention’s Committee on World Missions passed a revised resolution (D025) with [correction: almost] all the Deputies but only two of the five bishops on Committee voting aye. The resolution, which “affirm[s] that God has
called and may call such individuals to any ordained ministry in The
Episcopal Church,” concludes:
Resolved, That the 76th General Convention acknowledge that members
of The Episcopal Church, as of the Anglican Communion, based on careful
study of the Holy Scriptures, and in light of tradition and reason, are
not of one mind, and Christians of good conscience, disagree about some
of these matters.
Next up, votes in the House of Deputies and House of Bishops.
Update: The House of Deputies passed D025 by a better than 2-1 margin. According to Jim Naughton, the vote in the House of Bishops will be much closer. As JB Chilton reports from England, it’s clear the the Archbishop of Canterbury (ABC) regards the status quo ante (B033) as a moratium on ordaining partnered gay bishops and wishes that to continue. How much deference the American bishops will pay the ABC is anyone’s guess–but for what it’s worth, I’m betting on a narrow margin in favor of D025, putting the fat back in the fire.