Episcopal Bishops Pass Same Sex Union Blessing Liturgy Authorization Overwhelmingly

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Vote--111 for, 41 against, 3 abstentions.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)General Convention --Gen. Con. 2012Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)Same-sex blessings

Posted July 9, 2012 at 5:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. wvparson wrote:

I’m amazed at the size of the no vote.

July 9, 6:41 pm | [comment link]
2. David Keller wrote:

Does anyone know how they avoided the super majority requirement?

July 9, 6:45 pm | [comment link]
3. Karen B. wrote:

Anyone know if this was a roll call vote?  Will we get to see how each bishop voted?  I’ve been mostly avoiding GenCon coverage, but would be eager to know how various bishops voted on this.  Thanks.

July 9, 6:51 pm | [comment link]
4. c.r.seitz wrote:

#3 Yes. Go to the live feed. At some point along the way the language ‘trial rite’ (regulated by Article X) got swapped out and ‘provisional rite’ swapped in. Regulated by nothing. How convenient. Now we don’t even have a grossly manipulated C/C, but just making up things to avoid their actual implications. And even better NO ONE IN THE ROOM BOTHERED TO MENTION THIS! Someone just says, ‘it is not a trial rite’ and that is the end of it.

July 9, 6:52 pm | [comment link]
5. Formerly Marion R. wrote:

I’ve just realized I’m a provisional Episcopalian.

July 9, 6:56 pm | [comment link]
6. Milton Finch wrote:

Instead of animal blessings, may I move a resolution onto the floor and we could do it via provisional right, and if we have the votes, heck, we’re good to go!

July 9, 7:04 pm | [comment link]
7. Milton Finch wrote:

Right, rite….get it?

July 9, 7:06 pm | [comment link]
8. Milton Finch wrote:

Ready?  Here goes…I move we baptize them!

July 9, 7:09 pm | [comment link]
9. Brien wrote:

Provisional Rites go nicely with Provisional Bishops (Fort Worth, etc); when you can’t find a way to do it just punt:  provisional everything is just around the corner….who thinks this stuff up?

July 9, 7:10 pm | [comment link]
10. c.r.seitz wrote:

For what it is worth, I do believe it is important to state this clearly in the days to come.

Article X was designed properly to maintain the Common Prayer life of Episcopal Christians. There is no other reason for its phrasing, differentiation for Trial Rites and BCP voting procedures, and so forth.  Article X is written specifically to guard something.

The requirement of a supermajority was to ensure that Trial Rites were not frivolous experimentations, vis-a-vis the constitutional BCP.

What the Bishops have done—arguably to avoid the problems of not having near this number for passing a trial rite in accordance with Art. X, but also arguably because they really don’t care—is carve out space that none of their episcopal forebears imagined. That is, they intentionally created a category of liturgical rite which is not envisioned by the logic of Article X so as to disconnect from our canonical Christian life in the name of a cause.

As someone has wisely said, we are now all ‘provisional Episcopalians.’ The convictions of past Episcopalian Christians is so much malleable or cleverly avoidable pottage.

July 9, 7:34 pm | [comment link]
11. Teatime2 wrote:

#10—But if the particular Anglican character and ethos has much to do with common worship and a common Prayer Book (as I believe it does), then doesn’t this maneuvering betray that Anglican ethos and the implicit trust of the individuals, parishes and dioceses? In other words, if the national church doesn’t abide by its own ethos and canons, then how can it hold parishes, dioceses, and bishops to its canons? I believe you see where I’m going with these musings.

July 9, 7:53 pm | [comment link]
12. tjmcmahon wrote:

So, if I understand correctly, bishops may now provisionally authorize the use of this provisional liturgy that is provisionally derived from the provisional liturgies they gave themselves permission to authorize the use of (provisionally) at the last GC- that about sums it up, right?  Are there any penalties imposed on a bishop who authorizes a liturgy that has not been provisionally authorized, like, if someone used the ones previously used by Shaw and other bishops performing gay marriages?  Or would they need some sort of provisional approval for that?

July 9, 7:53 pm | [comment link]
13. tjmcmahon wrote:

then how can it hold parishes, dioceses, and bishops to its canons?

  They will primarily use high priced NY and DC law firms to do that.

July 9, 7:56 pm | [comment link]
14. Teatime2 wrote:

#13—But that’s just it. If there are no uniform rules and canons binding parishes and dioceses into a hierarchical church—and the national church can sidestep the rules on the books and change language even with a sizable number of bishops absent—then TEC would be hard-pressed to prove in a secular court that this is a hierarchical organization and they can hold the parishes and property. Let’s see how fast everything can become “provisionial!”

July 9, 8:09 pm | [comment link]
15. Saltmarsh Gal wrote:

Was the amended version passed?

July 9, 8:29 pm | [comment link]
16. driver8 wrote:

Have there been other Provisional Liturgies in the history of the Episcopal Church or is this a first?

July 9, 8:47 pm | [comment link]
17. Kendall Harmon wrote:

The good thing here is the resolution is clear: authorization to the whole church for liturgies done in certain ways.

There was an attempt to change away from the word “authorize” in debate—it was defeated.

July 9, 8:51 pm | [comment link]
18. Ralph wrote:

Jeremiah 23:1-2.

I lament that 111 bishops of TEC have willingly bought a one-way ticket to the Outer Darkness by their vote. God have mercy on these false teachers

July 9, 9:15 pm | [comment link]
19. Kendall Harmon wrote:

Tony in number 1—

The no number is very misleading, most nos were “yes but not yets.”
There were very very few solid nos

It is a huge yes vote and a huge change from, say, 4 General Conventions ago.

July 9, 9:21 pm | [comment link]
20. bob+ wrote:

I’m wondering if we’ll see another 23% decline in much less time than 10 years, say 5 or less. I believe TEC will regret this in a big way.

July 9, 9:25 pm | [comment link]
21. justice1 wrote:

#20 I’m sure you will see the TEC exodus increase speed.  As an American priest serving in the Anglican Church of Canada in an evangelical parish, in a very good diocese with an excellent bishop, I am still finding some in my congregation considering a move simply because of what appears to them the very public denial of the faith by churches in their “family”.  In fact, if it were not for the loyalty of many to one another, and their history in their current parishes, I suspect a lot of churches in this diocese would have been shuttered long ago over all of this.

July 9, 10:07 pm | [comment link]
22. JCMT64 wrote:

Which one is your diocese??? Is it possible that there are still some orthodox diocesis in Canada?

July 9, 10:24 pm | [comment link]
23. flaanglican wrote:

What else is there to say?  The Episcopal Church is a joke.

July 9, 10:54 pm | [comment link]
24. Jill Woodliff wrote:

At some point along the way the language ‘trial rite’ (regulated by Article X) got swapped out and ‘provisional rite’ swapped in. Regulated by nothing.

  The Apostle Paul said

children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes (Eph 4:14b)

July 9, 11:17 pm | [comment link]
25. Albany+ wrote:


Would you please link the text that was finally approved by HOB? There appears to have been tweaking of it. Thanks.

[Please see here - Elf]

July 9, 11:21 pm | [comment link]
26. flaanglican wrote:

Watch for this future headline: “41 Bigoted Bishops Brought Up on Title IV Charges”

July 10, 12:10 am | [comment link]
27. wvparson wrote:

We should realize that our church has now placed an enormous, and perhaps intolerable burden on same-gender couples seeking this blessing. They are answered to commit to a life-long relationship, solemnly and before God, on the basis of a thoroughly ‘romantic’ understanding of marriage. A greater pressure will be on them also because they will be prototypes. Traditional marriage is falling apart because the emphasis has been on romance rather than vocation, and also because of the collapse of the traditional supports for married couples.

I wonder whether a “provisional” blessing creates a ‘provisional’ union? (grin)


July 10, 8:46 am | [comment link]
28. tjmcmahon wrote:

“I wonder whether a “provisional” blessing creates a ‘provisional’ union? (grin)” 

Perhaps someone should propose an amendment -
“...forsaking all others, for as long as you both shall find mutually convenient” ?

July 10, 5:31 pm | [comment link]
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