The Anglican Church has passed legislation making it now possible for priests to bless couples in same-sex relationships.
The move will allow priests to bless same-sex civil marriage or civil unions, but not to carry out same-sex marriage in the Anglican church.
Philip Richardson, Tikanga Pākehā archbishop of New Plymouth, told Wendyl Nissen that the Church has long been a host of “wide and diverging views” on the issue.
There is integrity in the diversity of views.
The Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia's governing body passed the motion by a clear majority in New Plymouth on Wednesday.
“We try to find a way forward, as a church, which holds the integrity of views which are actually irreconcilable,” Mr Richardson said.
But Mr Richardson warns that the Anglican Church has not yet reached what he calls a compromise.
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“It’s accepted that we have irreconcilable positions, and we have sought to provide some structural mechanisms where those divergent integrities can be held together in the same family with respect and with integrity.
“We’ve passed the legislation that we believe does that.”
The resolution, called “Motion 29”, states that there will be no change to the church's doctrine or its formularies around marriage.
The archbishop explained individual bishops will be free to choose whether they will allow for the blessing of same-sex relationships.
“For some, that has proved to be adequate,” he said. “There will be some for whom where what we’re offering and have provided is not enough and may well decide to leave us.”
Listen to the full interview with Archbishop Philip Richardson above.
The Long Lunch with Wendyl Nissen, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.