An Episcopal Church bishop who was punished for refusing to allow gay marriages in his diocese has stated that he plans to appeal the punishment.
Bishop William Love of the Episcopal Diocese of Albany had his ministry officially restricted by the national church over his refusal to enforce a recently enacted resolution allowing congregations in his regional body to bless same-sex marriages.
“During the period of this restriction, Bishop Love, acting individually, or as Bishop Diocesan, or in any other capacity, is forbidden from participating in any manner in the Church’s disciplinary process in the Diocese of Albany in any matter regarding any member of the clergy that involves the issue of same-sex marriage,” stated Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, head of The Episcopal Church.
“Nor shall he participate in any other matter that has or may have the effect of penalizing in any way any member of the clergy or laity or worshiping congregation of his diocese for their participation in the arrangements for or participation in a same-sex marriage in his diocese or elsewhere.”
In response to Presiding Bishop Curry’s decision, Bishop Love said in an official letter released last Friday that he was planning to challenge the disciplinary action.
Love also noted that his appeal served the additional purpose of attempting to overturn the resolution passed last year that compelled his and other dioceses to allow gay weddings.
“I have already verbally informed the Presiding Bishop’s Office of my plans. This will soon be followed by an official written appeal as required by the Canons,” wrote Love.
Love also explained that during the appeal process he will respect the decision that partially restricts his ministry, but added that he has “not changed my understanding or teaching regarding the sacrament of Holy Matrimony.”
Last July, the Episcopal Church’s General Convention approved Resolution B012, which expanded the right for same-sex couples to marry in all dioceses, even ones where local bishops theologically object.
While the new resolution still gave clergy the right to refuse to officiate same-sex weddings, bishops opposed to same-sex marriage rites must call on another bishop to provide pastoral support for the couple and a clergy member to perform the ceremony.
Click here to read more.
SOURCE: Christian Post, Michael Gryboski