06/11/10-by Bridgette P. LaVictoire

The Anglican Church of Canada’s tri-annual General Synod failed again to resolve the issue of how to deal with same-sex unions.  The debate, which was apparently quieter than in years past, has The General Synod is a gathering of church leadership and laity to set Church policy.  On the next to the last day of the Synod, the various member groups have decided to agree to disagree on the subject of same-sex unions.  This leaves the Anglican Church of Canada in the same bind that it has been in the past with more socially liberal dioceses choosing to bless same-sex unions and those more socially conservative dioceses that have not left the Church refusing to do so.  Same-sex marriage is legal in Canada.

Archdeacon Paul Feheley stated “We didn’t all agree, but we’re able to recognize diversity in our case as a strength and we can live with each other’s differences.  That’s pretty important, in terms of a way forward.”  The Anglican Church of Canada will continue to study the scriptures regarding the issue of human sexuality and include lesbian and gay voices in the matter.

The Synod concluded this issue with “For many members of General Synod, there is a deep sadness that, at this time, there is no common mind.  We acknowledge the pain that our diversity in this matter causes.”

The Anglican Church worldwide is struggling with this issue with a variety of socially conservative Anglican dioceses choosing to leave the Church as a whole.  The biggest issue facing the Anglican Church is the question of Africa where homosexuality is still bound by colonial Victorian laws and more traditional and conservative forms of Christianity.  Evangelicalism is gaining strength in Africa, and many anti-gay evangelical leaders have been in that continent preaching against homosexuality and that homosexuality can be cured despite the fact that their assertions are often proven wrong in the Western world.

The Anglican Church is also caught with a growing acceptance of homosexuality among Western populations.  Recent polling shows that the majority of Americans, for instance, believe that homosexuality is neither a choice nor sinful.

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