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TEC’s first gay bishop dies: The Church of England Newspaper, January 17, 2013 January 16, 2014

Posted by geoconger in Church of England Newspaper, Human Sexuality --- The gay issue, The Episcopal Church, Utah.
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The Episcopal Church’s first “out” gay bishop has died.  The Rt. Rev. E. Otis Charles, retired Bishop of Utah and former Dean of the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass., died on 26 December 2013 at a hospice in San Francisco. He was 87.

Ordained in 1951, Bishop Charles was elected Bishop of Utah in 1971 and held the post until his retirement in 1986. He served as Bishop of Navajoland for two years before accepting the post of Dean and President of EDS, retiring a second time in 1993.

A father of five, Bishop Charles told his wife he was gay in 1976. Upon his retirement from EDS he informed the House of Bishops of his sexual orientation and announced he and his wife Elvira were divorcing. In 1995 Bishop Charles wrote Breaking the Silence: Out in the Work Place, stating his support for changing church teaching on the morality of homosexual relations. In 2008 Bishop Charles took part in a civil same-sex marriage to his partner Felipe Sanchez-Paris, who predeceased him.

He remained an active member of the House of Bishops in retirement and took up residence in San Francisco, where he served as an honorary assistant bishop in the Diocese of California.

Push in US for third ‘gay’ bishop: The Church of England Newspaper, April 16, 2010 p 7. April 23, 2010

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Canada, Church of England Newspaper, Human Sexuality --- The gay issue, Southern Ohio, Utah.
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Bishop Thomas Breidenthal of Southern Ohio waiting to address the House of Bishops

First published in The Church of England Newspaper.

The ‘gay agenda’ in the US and Canada continues to pick up steam, as approval for gay blessings spreads and another diocese shortlists a gay priest to stand for election as bishop.

At its 93rd annual synod the Diocese of British Columbia adopted a resolution authorizing same-sex blessings. While the focus of last month’s meeting was on closing 19 of its 52 congregations in response to a drastic decline in membership, the synod also approved a motion requesting Bishop James Cowan “grant permission for clergy whose conscience permits to bless duly solemnized and registered civil marriages between same-sex couples, where one party is baptized,” and further asked him to authorize rites for gay marriage.

Last month’s vote reverses the decision taken at the 2008 British Columbia synod not to “entertain motions related to the approval of same-sex unions until the matter has been considered and decided upon by General Synod.” The Canadian General Synod is expected to take up the matter at its June meeting in Halifax.

On April 10, the Diocese of Southern Ohio celebrated its first official same-sex blessing, when Michael Harbin (56) and Warren MacPherson (59) exchanged vows at St. Stephen’s Episcopal

The next day two women exchanged vows at Church of Our Saviour in Cincinnati. For the Church of Our Saviour congregation, where the two women are “a wonderful presence and a blessing to the community” because of their active involvement and ministries, the blessing was a time of great joy and celebration, said the Rev. Paula Jackson, rector, who officiated at the Spanish-English bilingual service.

“It was an evangelical moment,” the Rev. Paula Jackson told the Episcopal News Service. The two women were “deeply moved by the blessing. They are people who believe in God but who have been hurt by the church and who are not in church. But they were grateful that the Episcopal Church recognized and blessed godly unions.”

At the diocese’s November convention the Rt. Rev. Thomas Breidenthal announced he would lift the ban on same-sex blessings after Easter. The bishop told the convention that the decision by General Convention last July to lift the ban on same-sex blessings and gay clergy permitted the diocese to proceed.

On April 9 the Diocese of Utah announced that four candidates had been short listed to stand for election as bishop on May 22. Among the four is Canon Michael Barlowe, canon for congregational ministries of the Diocese of California.

A partnered gay priest, Canon Barlowe has had two previous runs for episcopal office in the dioceses of Newark and California. If elected, he would be the church’s third openly gay bishop.

Concerns over the fallout of electing further gay bishops in contravention to the requests of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the primates, and the Anglican Consultative Council is slight among American church leaders.

At a press conference held at the close of last month’s House of Bishops meeting in Texas, The Church of England Newspaper asked whether the bishops had discussed the election of Canon Mary Glasspool as suffragan bishop of Los Angeles, or the Archbishop of Canterbury’s letter warning of consequences for this action.

The Rt. Rev. Kenneth Price, interim Bishop of Pittsburgh, said there had been no discussion, as this had not been on the agenda and had “not come up” in the bishops’ conversations.