All religious institutions – including the Church of Scotland – will be free to decide for themselves if they would like to provide marriages for gay couples, under plans announced today.
However, the Church of England and Church in Wales will be banned in law from offering same-sex marriages – a decision that has already been criticised by equality campaigners along with the Archbishop of Wales Dr Barry Morgan.
The Scottish Government has ruled out introducing similar conditions for the nation’s Presbyterian church, although SNP ministers insist that no churches would be forced to hold same-sex weddings.
Ministers have already decided they want to make the change, and now need to consult on proposed legislation to be put to the Scottish Parliament.
The consultation on its draft legislation – opposed by the Church of Scotland and the nation’s Catholic Church – will last until March.
b. April 24, 1926
Bishop Charles was the first openly gay bishop in any Chrisitian denomination.
From LGBT Religious Archives:
Since 1979 he has been among a growing number of bishops who have spoken out for full and complete inclusion of gay and lesbian people in the church without restriction, recognizing their calling to ministry and rejecting the notion that a baptized homosexual must live a celibate life. In 1980, he was the recipient of the national Integrity Award. He is represented in Out in the Workplace: Gay and Lesbian Professionals Tell Their Stories.Upon his retirement in 1993, Charles publicly announced his homosexuality, becoming the first openly gay bishop of any Christian denomination. That September he sent an epistle to his colleagues in the House of Bishops that said, in part: “I have promised myself that I will not remain silent, invisible, unknown. After all is said and done, the choice for me is not whether or not I am a gay, but whether or not I am honest about who I am with myself and others. It is a choice to take down the wall of silence I have built around an important and vital part of my life, to end the separation and isolation I have imposed on myself all these years.”John McNeil, former Jesuit and author of Freedom, Glorious Freedom speaks of Bishop Charles’ coming out as “an extraordinary example (of the) public exposure… required… to… provide an image… of what it is to be mature as Christian and as gay” (pp.82-83). In Last Watch of the Night, Paul Monette wrote of Bishop Charles’ coming out as “an important moment in gay and lesbian history, and a ringing challenge to the status quo of invisibility” (p. 304).The Sunday edition of the New York Times (October 10, 1993) as well as both gay and straight press around the country reported the bishop’s action. Boston’s Bay Windows editorialized: “the news of a 67 year old bishop coming out of the closet is something at which to marvel. Charles puts it less grandly, however, saying simply that it was a matter of integrity.”After making his public witness Bishop Charles, who appreciates being addressed by his baptismal name, Otis, has welcomed the opportunity to share his story. Whether in an informal gathering or the pulpit, he characteristically begins, “I am a gay man, an Episcopal (Anglican) bishop, a queer who only just mustered the courage to publicly acknowledge the truth of my life.”Charles has continued as an active and voting member of the Episcopal House of Bishops taking many stands on behalf of his community. In 1995, Charles co-founded Oasis/California, the Bay Area Episcopal Lesbian and Gay ministry. In 1998, Charles was appointed Interim Dean of the School for Deacons serving northern California. During this time he also served as Bishop-in-residence at the Church of St. John-the-Evangelist in San Francisco and a founding editor of Millennium3, an on-line and print publication distributed to all 13,600 Episcopal clergy. He was an Assisting Bishop in the Diocese of California until 2004.Charles is currently working on his memoirs and editing a collection of personal reflections on the contribution of entheogens as an opening to mystical experience. Since 1993 he has been a resident of San Francisco where he lives with his partner, Felipe Sanchez Paris.
After Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriage in 2004, Norman Kansfield’s daughter asked him to perform her wedding ceremony.
Kansfield, a respected pastor, scholar and lifelong member of the Reformed Church in America, agreed to marry Ann and her long-time girlfriend. He informed the New Brunswick Theological Seminary in New Jersey, where he served as president, of his plans.
“I had thought that there would be a request for my resignation,” Kansfield says. “Nobody did that.”
It was a June wedding.
Norman Kansfield and his wife, Mary, at their home in eastern Pennsylvania. Kansfield was put on trial by the Reformed Church after performing his daughter’s same-sex marriage.
“I’m a very emotional person, so I was quite pleased that I had not choked up or teared up throughout the service,” Kansfield says. “And then afterward, two women came to me and said that that was the first service in which they had felt genuinely part of church in years. They were a lesbian couple, and, at that point, I wept.”
The First Trial In Church History
Though no attempt was made to stop Kansfield from officiating his daughter’s wedding, the seminary’s board decided not to renew his contract the next year.
Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, who served as general secretary of the Reformed Church for 17 years before retiring in 2011, says Kansfield left the church no other option.
“Up to that point, it had kind of been don’t-ask-don’t-tell,” Granberg-Michaelson says. “It was clear that while this certainly was a father’s love for his daughter, it also was an intentional statement that Norm was trying to make.”
Roy Bourgeois, a longtime peace activist and priest who had come under scrutiny for his support of women’s ordination, has been dismissed from the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, which he served for 45 years, according to the congregation.
The Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith made the dismissal in October, according to a news release issued Monday afternoon by the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers.
Dominican Fr. Tom Doyle, a canon lawyer acting on Bourgeois’ behalf, told NCR he was not aware of the move.
Doyle said he and Bourgeois met with Maryknoll’s superior general, Fr. Edward Dougherty, in June, and the issue of dismissal had not been discussed.
“The idea then was that things would continue and they would not dismiss Roy and they would continue to dialogue,” Doyle said. “And then this just happened, unilaterally. [Bourgeois] had no idea.”
Bourgeois was not available for comment Monday afternoon.
Mike Virgintino, the manager of communications for the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, declined to answer any questions about the matter.
“I cannot answer any additional questions,” Virgintino said. “We have to stay with that statement. I can’t answer anything more.”
– full report at National Catholic Reporter.
Following the defeat by General Synod of the women bishops legislation this afternoon the Church of England issued this press release.
General Synod Rejects Draft Legislation on Women Bishops
20 November 2012
The General Synod of the Church of England has voted to reject the draft legislation to allow women to become bishops.
Under the requirements of the Synod the legislation required a two-thirds majority in each of the three voting houses for final draft approval. Whilst more than two thirds voted for the legislation in both the House of Bishops (44-03) and the House of Clergy (148-45), the vote in favour of the legislation in the House of Laity was less than two-thirds (132-74). The vote in the House of Laity fell short of approval by six votes.
In total 324 members of the General Synod voted to approve the legislation and 122 voted to reject it.
The consequence of the “no” vote of terminating any further consideration of the draft legislation means that it will not be possible to introduce draft legislation in the same terms until a new General Synod comes into being in 2015, unless the ‘Group of Six’ (the Archbishops, the Prolocutors and the Chair and Vice Chair of the House of Laity) give permission and report to the Synod why they have done so.
Speaking after the vote the Rt Revd Graham James, Bishop of Norwich, said: “A clear majority of the General Synod today voted in favour of the legislation to consecrate women as Bishops. But the bar of approval is set very high in this Synod. Two-thirds of each house has to approve the legislation for it to pass. This ensures the majority is overwhelming. The majority in the house of laity was not quite enough. This leaves us with a problem. 42 out of 44 dioceses approved the legislation and more than three quarters of members of diocesan synods voted in favour. There will be many who wonder why the General Synod expressed its mind so differently.
“The House of Bishops recognises that the Church of England has expressed its mind that women should be consecrated as bishops. There is now an urgent task to find a fresh way forward to which so many of those who were opposed have pledged themselves.”
The House of Bishops of the Church of England will meet at 08.30am on Wednesday morning in emergency session to consider the consequences of the vote.
Exact voting figures will be found here.
via Thinking Anglicans.
Commentary added by Thinking Anglicans:
To clarify the statement “The vote in the House of Laity fell short of approval by six votes.”, if six members of the House of Laity had voted in favour instead of against, the vote would in that house would have reached the necessary two-thirds majority.
Also at Thinking Anglicans, is a series of useful posts summarizing the reactions from a wide range of sources:
Women Bishops Press Release (as above, with comments by TA readers)
More Responses to the Vote, Part 1, with responses to the vote by:
- Affirming Catholicism
- Inclusive Church
Press Coverage and Commentary updated Wednesday morning, with headlines from:
- Church in crisis as it turns its back on women bishops
- Campaigners for women bishops in despair as laity rejects reform
- Andrew Brown writes for Comment is Free: A long and boring suicide note
- Church among men-only stragglers over women bishops
- Lucy Winkett writes a disaster for the church I love
- Church’s final no to women bishops
- Damian Thompson writes the Church of England votes for civil war
- Tim Stanley blogs Church is paralysed by its conflicting obsessions of equality and consensus
- Beyond belief: Church is rocked by ‘no’ vote against women bishops plan
- Editorial A decision that leaves the Church in the past
- The paper’s founder and the First Church Estates Commissioner, Andreas Whittam Smith, writes that the vote was a profoundly emotional experience, and it ended in disaster
- Channel 4
and a link to CofE Media Briefing for today.
More Responses to the Vote, Part 2, with commentary from:
- Church of England Evangelical Council
- Statement from Chairman of Reform on Today’s Synod Vote
- Forward in Faith reacts to the defeat of the draft Measure
- Catholic Group on General Synod
- Emergency meeting for bishops as church reels from Synod vote (Ekklesia)
- Church vote rejects women bishops (bbc.co.uk)
- Church vote rejects moves to allow women bishops (standard.co.uk)
- Women Bishops: CoE Press Release; News Commentary (christianityandsexuality.org)
- Women bishops vote a ‘grim day’ (bbc.co.uk)
- UK News: Church bid for women bishops fails (walesonline.co.uk)
- Church of England rejects female bishops by six votes (religion.blogs.cnn.com)
- Church of England General Synod votes against women bishops despite late plea from next Archbishop of Canterbury (independent.co.uk)
- Church of England Refuses to Allow Female Bishops (nytimes.com)
- Church vote rejects women bishops (bbc.co.uk)
- Women Bishops draft measure rejected by General Synod (thinkinganglicans.org.uk)
“Two extraordinary people … that have spent the greater part of a half century … fighting for their right to live the way so many of us, frankly, take for granted.“
– San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom
November 6th 2012 was a great day for LGBT political progress to equality, at all levels of American government.
- In Minnesota, where Republicans in the state legislature, with Catholic bishops as cheerleaders, initiated the proposed constitutional ban, the GOP lost both houses of the state legislature.
- In New York, where the NOM and the rest of the religious right went after four GOP state senators who supported gay marriage last year, the Republicans appear to have lost the state senate, which they have held for years. (One key race has not yet been settled, but the Democrat holds a still lead).
- In Iowa, where the Democrats control the state senate and have resisted attempts to initiate a repeal of gay marriage, the Republicans failed in a determined attempt to take control. Also in Iowa, where two years ago voters unseated three of the judges who had ruled in favour of gay marriage, this year a similar conservative assault on a fourth judge failed. Same – sex marriage in Iowa is here to stay.
- In Colorado, where the GOP Speaker of the state House blocked a bill for civil unions that would have passed simply by refusing to allow a vote, the Democrats have regained control. Speaker McNulty will soon be ex-Speaker, and is likely to be replaced by – an openly gay man. Expect civil unions, or even full marriage equality, to feature high on his to-do list for 2013.
As recently as 2004 the Republican strategist Karl Rove prompted Republicans in key states to put up gay marriage bans in the federal election. The object was to anger the base and draw Christian conservatives and religious black voters out to the polls, and in so doing bolster the vote for George Bush jnr. It worked, and for a time some Republicans believed they could use fear of gay marriage to maintain a permanent majority.
The results across America on Tuesday night appear to put the notion to rest
– Sydney Morning Herald
State House election gains:
Seven state legislatures gained their first or only openly LGBT state lawmakers this year, including North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia, New Mexico, Texas, Pennsylvania and Florida, which went from zero to two gay legislators. And in Oregon and Colorado, state legislative election results have positioned two out lawmakers to become House Speakers.
- Ricardo Lara
- Mark Leno
- Tom Ammiano
- Toni Atkins
- Susan Eggman
- Richard Gordon
- John Perez
- Jessie Ulibarri
- Patrick Steadman
- Dominick Moreno
- Paul Rosenthal
- Mark Ferrandino
- Joann Ginal
- Sue Schafer
- Joe Saunders
- Dave Richardson-State House of Representatives
- Simone Bell
- Karla Drenner
- Keisha Sean Waites
- Deb Mell
- Sam Yingling
- Kelly Cassidy
- Denise Andrews
- Carl Sciortino
- Sarah Peake
- Justin Chenette
- Andrew McLean
- Matt Moonen
- Terry Morrison
- MN-Scott Dibble
- Susan Allen
- Mike Colona
- Christine Kaufmann
- Bryce Bennett
- Marcus Brandon
- Joshua Boschee
- David Pierce
- Chris Pappas
- Jacob Candelaria
- NV-David Parks
- James Healey
- Andrew Martin
- NY-Brad Hoylman
- Harry Bronson
- Matthew Titone
- Danny O’Donnell
- Tim Brown
- Nickie Antonio
- Al McAffrey
- Kay Floyd
- Kate Brown
- Virginia Linder
- Tina Kotek
- Brian Sims
- Gordon Fox
- Deb Ruggiero
- Frank Ferri
- Angie Buhl
- Mary Gonzalez
- Herb Russell
- Matt Trieber
- Suzi Wizowaty
- Jamie Pederson
- Marko Liias
- Jim Moeller
- JoCasta Zamarripa
- Stephen Skinner
- Cathy Connolly
b. 3rd November, 1939
American playwright who has received four Tony Awards, an Emmy, and numerous others awards.
What the gay movement is really about is being yourself. You must be yourself, else you risk becoming invisible.
This success though was the culmination of a long career going back to 1964, when his first play, “Things that go bump in the night” met with a decidedly frosty critical reception, and played only 12 nights. The intervening years were filled with hard graft, a steady stream of output, an ability to learn and improve his craft, and growing critical recognition.
McNally has spoken of the importance of honesty and coming out early in his personal life, and has never shirked from putting gay characters and gay life characters on stage, even long before it became commonly accepted to do so. (The Ritz was set in a gay bathhouse). Two major themes are the difficulties people find in making human connections between each other (and the importance of the search for those connections), and
the power of art (especially opera, and by implication, the theatre) to help us to make these connections, by breaking down the walls that divide us.
In spite of the big themes he addresses in his plays, McNally insists that he does not set out to write plays about issues: his primary concern is to write characters – because that is what audiences pay to come and see.
In addition to his major work in the theatre, McNally has also written the books for musicals and screenplays, and in opera
Sweet Eros (1968)
Where Has Tommy Flowers Gone? (1971)
Bad Habits (1974)
The Ritz (1975)
Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (1982)
Andre’s Mother (1988)
The Lisbon Traviata (1989)
Lips Together, Teeth Apart (1991)
Love! Valour! Compassion! (1994)
By The Sea, By The Sea, By The Beautiful Sea (1995)
Master Class (1995)
Corpus Christi (1998)
Some Men (2006)
The Golden Age (2010)
The University of San Diego has canceled a visiting fellowship for a British theologian less than two weeks before her scheduled arrival at the university because of pressure from financial contributors, according to a letter from the university’s president.
Tina Beattie, a professor of Catholic studies at London’s private University of Roehampton known for her work in contemporary ethical issues and Catholic understandings of feminism, received notice of the cancellation Oct. 27. She was scheduled to take residence at the university on Tuesday.
Beattie — who also serves on the board of directors of the British Catholic weekly The Tablet and is a theological adviser to the Catholic Agency For Overseas Development, the Catholic aid agency for England and Wales — announced the withdrawal of the invitation in an email to friends and other theologians Thursday.
Beattie said in an interview with NCR that cancellation of her fellowship was “symptomatic of something very new and very worrying.”
“It’s unheard of, certainly in Britain, for a theologian in my position to feel threatened by this kind of action,” Beattie said. “It’s not about me; it’s about some change in the culture of the Catholic church that we should be very, very concerned about.”
Prominent theologians in the U.S. and the UK called the university’s treatment of Beattie “an insult” and “dispiriting” and worried that it might have a chilling effect in the academic world. Several said they had written directly to university president Mary Lyons about the matter.
- Nuns And Theologians Issue Challenge To Paul Ryan (huffingtonpost.com)