The Church of England said Wednesday that it will allow blessings for same-sex civil marriages for the first time, the Washington Post reports.
The decision was preceded by five years of debate and consultation on the Church’s position on sexuality. It is expected to be set out in a report to the Church’s national assembly, the General Synod, which meets in London next month.
Under the proposals, the Church of England’s position that the sacrament of marriage is limited to unions between a man and a woman will not change.
However, same-sex couples could celebrate a service with prayers of dedication, thanksgiving or request for God’s blessing after a civil marriage or civil partnership registration.
Same-sex marriage has been legal in England and Wales since 2013, but the Church did not change its teaching when the law was changed.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, the spiritual leader of the Anglican Church, acknowledged that the proposals “go too far for some and not far enough for others.”
“I hope that in this way the Church of England can publicly and unequivocally tell all Christians, and LGBTQI+ people in particular, that they are welcome and a valued and precious part of the body of Christ,” he explained and effectively twisted the teaching of Christ and the Bible, which very clearly states that Christianity indeed embraces everyone but not our sins. Christians are taught to love the sinner and hate the sin. It is not up to us to change the Christian faith in order to justify our weaknesses.