UK gay Methodists will have wedding ceremonies

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The Methodist Conference, which sets the policies for the denomination in Britain, has agreed to “revisit” its stance on same-sex marriage. Right now the church defines marriage as a union of a man and a woman, but the church officials are thinking about reconsidering such a definition.

The vote came after a report from a task group on ‘Marriage and Relationships’, which was commissioned in 2014. The report asked opinions and discussions of 8,000 church members and looked into issues faced by LGBT people in the church including trans and intersex people.

A new task group has been appointed to carry out the work, and it could take up to two years. Task group chair Rev Graham Carter said: “It is essential to take time over this issue because the process of finding a way forward is as important as reaching a decision. Enabling people in the church to talk openly about their differing convictions and value their common commitment to Jesus Christ is key to what it means to be a Christian community. The decision of the Conference to establish a working party on the matters of marriage and relationships is an important step which comes from a widespread conversation in which people have listened, respected each other’s position and engaged in deep reflection together. The conversations will continue and we will go on responding to the challenges of interpreting God’s love for today’s society”

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