Anglican same-sex blessings vote applies only to England

same-sex blessings

Rumours swirling about the Anglican Communion in England’s recent ‘yes’ vote for same-sex blessings have been cleared up by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Decisions made by the Anglican Communion in England apply only to England.

They don’t have an international reach, Justin Welby says.

He reminded people of the autonomy of Anglican Provinces, as rumours circulated that same-sex blessings were to be imposed on other parts of the Communion.

Speaking at a press conference on Saturday, before the opening of the 18th meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC), he said:

“No Province can bind another Province, tell it what to do. We are not a post-, a neo-colonial entity in that way.”

The Anglican Communion Office (ACO) also firmly denied that the Communion’s same-sex blessings decision was binding on the rest of the Communion, saying: “This is categorically not true.”

Nor was it “a decision for the entire Communion. It wasn’t. It was a decision for England only,” the ACO said.

Expanding on his initial statement, Welby said: “One bit of the Church of England passing the resolutions that passed last week does not bind anyone at all, not even the Church of England at the moment.”

He also spoke of the Provinces’ relationship. “We’re interdependent. We belong to each other. We’re grown-up children.”

The ACC vice-chair added: “What it is that brings us together isn’t a set of rules. It isn’t for us to be busy looking over our shoulder at what our neighbours’ state of play is in terms of their relationship with God. It is our relationship with God.”

Anglican Communion secretary-general explained that although the Anglican Communion Office is in London, it isn’t actually part of the Church of England.

He also pointed out the Archbishop of Canterbury isn’t the chair. That person is Dr Paul Kwong, Archbishop Emeritus of Hong Kong.


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