Church of Scotland Votes To Allow Gay Ministers In Civil Partnerships

The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland has voted, 309 – 183, to allow congregations to ordain gay ministers who are in same sex civil partnerships.

A further vote will be held this week on whether or not to extend ordination to ministers in same sex marriages. Supporters said it was time for the church to be inclusive and recognise the “mixed economy” of modern Scotland. Opponents warned that the move was contrary to God’s law, would prove divisive and lead to resignations.

 

The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland has voted [on May 16, 2015] to allow congregations to ordain gay ministers who are in same sex civil partnerships.

Delegates voted 309 in favour and 183 against.

The vote followed a church-wide debate and consultations with all 45 presbyteries, which voted 31 to 14 in favour of change.

A further vote will be held this week on whether or not to extend ordination to ministers in same sex marriages.

Supporters said it was time for the church to be inclusive and recognise the “mixed economy” of modern Scotland.

Opponents warned that the move was contrary to God’s law, would prove divisive and lead to resignations.

A spokesman for the Church of Scotland said that the current stance meant that the Church had adopted a position which “maintains a traditional view of marriage between a man and woman, but allows individual congregations to ‘opt out’ if they wish to appoint a minister or a deacon in a same sex civil partnership.”

No Kirk session can be forced into doing so.

The debate predates the legalisation of gay marriage, so the Assembly will be asked next Thursday to consider amending the new Kirk law to include ministers in same-sex marriages.

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