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A Matter for Prayerful Discussion BY JOHN HOLMES

Following the General Convention of 2012, in accordance with Resolution 2012-A049, Bishop Daniel Clifton began to permit the use of liturgies for the blessing of same-sex relationships in the Diocese of East Carolina. His approval to permit this ministry came with one stipulation: both the priest and vestry must be in agreement before proceeding. Bishop Peter Lee has continued this policy in his tenure as Bishop Provisional. All four of the candidates for the VIII Bishop of the Diocese have indicated in their written responses that they would continue with this policy if elected. Several churches in East Carolina have already embarked on this ministry. It should be emphasized that

under the current policy no priest or vestry will be mandated to undertake the Blessing of a Convenanted Union within their parish. “All may, some should, none must.� At our annual retreat this year, the vestry discussed the current policy and agreed that it would be prudent to enter into a dialogue to familiarize ourselves with the current positions of The Episcopal Church and our own Diocese. In order to facilitate this discussion, we have invited Bishop Lee to help us guide a discussion on this topic on Wednesday, May 21. Bishop Lee will help celebrate Eucharist with us at 5:15 p.m. followed by a special dinner and conversation on the ministry of blessing covenanted unions. We hope to

EVENT RUNDOWN A Matter for Prayerful Discussion

5:15 p.m. May 21 at St. John's The Rt. Rev. Peter Lee Celebrates Eucharist with us Followed by dinner and conversation to help develop a broader understanding of the resolution and liturgy for the blessing of same-sex relationships

have a good turnout for this event as we all seek a broader understanding of this topic. Your vestry feels that the timing is right to collectively and prayerfully begin a process of discussion and discernment. There is no hidden agenda or predetermined course of action by either your priest or your vestry on this matter. All voices shall be heard and respected. Bishop Lee is well-qualified to help lead us in this discussion. We look forward to welcoming him on May 21 and invite everyone to participate in the service, the dinner and the discussion to follow.

There are two documents available to help you become conversant about the resolution and liturgy for the blessing of same-sex relationships




The Epistle - May 2014  

The monthly newsletter of St. John's Episcopal Church, Fayetteville, NC