In an effort to become more gay-friendly, the Episcopal Church in the United States has decided to scrub the words “husband” and “wife” from Episcopal wedding ceremonies.
The changes to the denomination’s revered Book of Common Prayer removes the phrase “the union of husband and wife” and replaces it with “the union of two people,” and replaces the section that talks about part of God’s intention for marriage being “for the procreation of children” with the phrase “for the gift of children” to make it more acceptable to same-sex couples who may wish to adopt.
Couples will still be able to opt for the traditional “husband” and “wife” when making their vows, but this will not be included in the standardized version.
On his Facebook page, Rev. Franklin Graham wrote, “I’ve got news for them—just changing their words in their ceremony won’t make it right,” adding, “You cannot change what God has defined.”
“Through the centuries, people have tried to reinterpret, repackage or rewrite God’s laws to suit themselves and their own evil desires,” he said. “It’s nothing new; but the end result is always the same. It’s called disobedience—it’s called sin. And sin brings God’s judgment.”
The change is not being well-received by the Church of England either.
Last October, Church of England Secretary General William Nye criticized the new wording and suggested it could lead to an official split. In a letter, which emerged earlier this month, Nye threatened to cut ties with the U.S. church, which is a fellow member of the worldwide Anglican Communion, if it introduces the new service as standard.
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Source: Church Leaders