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MELBOURNE: Anglican Archbishop issues Ad Clerum over Same Sex Marriage

MELBOURNE: Anglican Archbishop issues Ad Clerum over Same Sex Marriage
No priest may participate in a same sex marriage

By David W. Virtue, DD
June 4, 2018

A video by blogger David Ould purporting to show a number of Anglican clergy participating in a same sex marriage came under fire from the Archbishop of Melbourne, Dr. Philip Freier.

In an AD CLERUM (to clergy only) Freier reiterated that, irrespective of changes in the marriage law, there is no change in the Anglican Church's position on officiating in or performing a same sex marriage. They cannot.

Recently, three retired Anglican clergy with Permission to Officiate in the Diocese of Melbourne took part in an event where a same-sex marriage was celebrated in Melbourne. Here is what Freier wrote:

"It is important to clarify what took place, given that it is not open for Anglican clergy to perform same-sex marriages. I have received assurances from one of the clergy that none of the three was involved in the wedding service itself, though they did attend. The service took place in the Community Church of St Mark in Clifton Hill, a Baptist Church, and the celebrant was a minister of another denomination. One of the Anglican clergy presided at the Eucharist later, and the other two offered Eucharistic prayers, but none officiated in any way in the marriage service. They did enter the church in the procession.

"Consistent with the doctrine of the Anglican Church of Australia, Anglican clergy are only authorized to officiate at a marriage between a man and a woman. Protocols to meet the new pastoral situation are under consideration, but in the meantime clergy are required to ask their episcopate bishop for guidance as to how to act in specific pastoral circumstances concerning same-sex weddings and celebrations.

“In order to foster thoughtful wisdom in practice, and awareness of the diversity of views, I encourage you to reflect on your responses to possible scenarios. This could be done in a deanery setting or in a parish context. The change to the marriage law raises issues for all of us, irrespective of whether we supported the change in last year’s postal ballot or not.”


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