Canadians to focus on Williams’ request for moratorium

The Anglican Journal carries an insightful interview with Canadian Primate Fred Hiltz on the difficulties his Church would face in attempting to comply with Rowan Williams’ request for a moratorium on authorization of rites for the blessing of same-sex relationships:

He said there are conflicting interpretations on what the moratorium on same-sex blessings means, with some thinking it means not having any new blessings, and some interpreting it as retroactive, which would require a synod like New Westminster to rescind its 2002 motion that allowed same-sex blessings in their diocese. He added that the Archbishop of Canterbury’s recent letter about the moratoria was also “significant.” Archbishop Williams had acknowledged that, while the call for moratoria received support from “a strong majority” at the conference, he was nonetheless aware of the “conscientious difficulties this posed for some.”

Archbishop Hiltz said that the diocesan bishop of New Westminster, Michael Ingham, “rightly pointed out that it’s not for him to rescind the motion; the synod has to debate the issue.” The primate said that he’d be “very surprised if they rescind that motion.”

Archbishop Hiltz said that the call for moratoria would also be “a huge pastoral challenge” for bishops of four dioceses that have pending requests from their synods for the approval of same-sex blessings “given the kind of strong majority votes those synods” had.

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