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Anglican hierarchy urged to approve same sex marriages

Published: 6:25PM Sunday May 11, 2014 Source: ONE News

  • Reverend Helen Jacobi (Source: ONE News)
    Reverend Helen Jacobi - Source: ONE News

Pressure is growing for same sex couples to be able to say 'I do" in an Anglican church.

Currently same sex couples don't have the church's blessing for tying the knot but a petition calling for change will be presented at the general synod in Waitangi tomorrow.

A commission chaired by former Governor General Sir Anand Satyanand was formed to report on the issue two years ago and its recommendations are being discussed by church leaders at the bi-annual meeting of church leaders in Waitangi.

At Auckland's St Matthew in the City, Reverend Helen Jacobi has made her position loud and clear, calling on church leaders to step up.

"We do lots of weddings and a couple can come from overseas who wants to get married in our beautiful building and we welcome them warmly as part of our hospitality. We can't marry a gay couple from our own congregation, and that is wrong," she says.

Same sex marriage is now part of New Zealand life but it hasn't been accepted by the Anglican church.

"I think people are ready to move on, I think your average person in the pew wants the church to be getting on with its work in the community and not to be internally stuck on this conversation, and they want us to be seen as a place for justice and inclusion," Reverend Jacobi says.

Historian Peter Lineham says the report offers 10 answers and the general synod now has to choose out of 10 options ranging from allowing same sex marriage to ruling it completely out. Another option is to make no decision at all and give the church more time.

"Even if they positively said we will go ahead it would take maybe six years to get there," Mr Lineham says.

A spokesperson at the synod has downplayed any talk of a divide within the church but tomorrow's petition, signed by more than 750 people and to be handed over by Reverend Jacobi, calls for discrimination to end.

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