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No right to ordination, tribunal rules: The Church of England Newspaper, October 25, 2013 October 25, 2013

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand & Polynesia, Church of England Newspaper.
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The Anglican Church of New Zealand is exempt from laws banning discrimination against homosexuals, the Human Rights Review Tribunal ruled last week.

On 18 October 2013 the tribunal ruled the Bishop of Auckland, the Rt. Rev. Ross Bay, had not violated the country’s Human Rights laws by refusing to allow Eugene Sisneros to begin the ordination process.

Bishop Bay had declined to permit Mr. Sisneros from entering the process because he was in a same-sex partnership, and as such, did not meet the church’s requirement that aspirants be chaste.

Mr. Sisneros, a lay employee of St. Matthews-in-the-City in Auckland, responded by filing a complaint stating he “felt totally humiliated that I had spent six years of my life in study, for a process that I was not permitted to enter because I was a gay man and in a relationship.”

New Zealand’s Human Rights Act 1993 forbids discrimination in employment on the grounds of sexual orientation. However Part 2 Section 28 of the Act permits “exceptions for purposes of religion” and allows “different treatment based on religious or ethical belief” by churches in the employment of clergy.

In its decision, the tribunal held the church did not breach the Human Rights Act because it was complying with its own exceptions, and its denial of Mr. Sisnernos’ candidacy was allowed under Section 28 of the Act. “The Human Rights Act 1993 allows exceptions to some discrimination laws, including where organised religions are following their doctrine.”

“The Tribunal is not asked to deliberate on what the rules, doctrines or established customs within the Anglican Church are, or ought to be,” it held.

Bishop Bay welcomed the ruling, telling Radio New Zealand the decision balanced individual human rights with the autonomous nature of the Church, in a way that ensures freedom of religion.

Mr. Sisneros has a right to appeal the ruling.

No right to ordination for gay man, Human Rights Tribunal rules: Anglican Ink, October 19, 2013 October 19, 2013

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand & Polynesia, Anglican Ink, Human Sexuality --- The gay issue.
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The New Zealand Human Rights Review Tribunal has dismissed a complaint accusing the Bishop of Auckland of discrimination against homosexuals.

On 18 October 2013 the tribunal ruled the Bishop of Auckland, the Rt. Rev. Ross Bay, had not violated the country’s Human Rights laws by refusing to allow Eugene Sisneros to begin the ordination process on because he is in a same-sex partnership.

Mr. Sisneros, a lay employee of St. Matthews-in-the-City in Auckland, filed a complaint with the tribunal stating he “felt totally humiliated that I had spent six years of my life in study, for a process that I was not permitted to enter because I was a gay man and in a relationship,” adding “My humiliation and disappointment continue to this day.”\

Read it all at Anglican Ink.

Auckland Synod rejects gay marriage: Anglican Ink, September 7, 2013 September 8, 2013

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand & Polynesia, Anglican Ink, Marriage.
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The Rt Rev Ross Bay, Bishop of Auckland

Lay delegates to the Auckland Synod have blocked the diocese from moving forward with gay marriages.

On 7 September 2013 delegates to the 54th meeting of the diocesan synod split over Motion 6, which would have begun the process towards gay marriage by changing the canons and creating same-sex marriage liturgies.

The bishop and assistant bishop gave their assent to the motion, while the clergy voted 80 in favor, 44 opposed and 4 abstained. However in the lay order the motion failed to break the 50 percent threshold. While 72 delegates voted in favor, 65 were opposed and 8 abstained – giving 73 “no” votes.

Read it all in Anglican Ink.

NZ human rights tribunal to review Anglican ban on gay clergy: The Church of England Newspaper, May 12, 2013 p 6 May 14, 2013

Posted by geoconger in Anglican Church of Aotearoa New Zealand & Polynesia, Church of England Newspaper.
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And unsuccessful aspirant for holy orders has filed a complaint with the New Zealand Human Rights Review Tribunal accusing the Bishop of Auckland of discrimination against homosexuals. Eugene Sisneros, an employee of St Matthew in the City in Auckland, has alleged that Bishop Ross Bay violated the country’s Human Rights laws by refusing to allow him to begin the ordination process because he is in a same-sex partnership.

In his Statement of Claim, plaintiff said he “felt totally humiliated that I had spent six years of my life in study, for a process that I was not permitted to enter because I was a gay man and in a relationship” noting: “My humiliation and disappointment continue to this day.”

New Zealand’s Human Rights Act 1993 forbids discrimination in employment on the grounds of sexual orientation. However Part 2 Section 28 of the Act permits“exceptions for purposes of religion” and allows “different treatment based on religious or ethical belief” by churches in the employment of clergy.

Bishop Bay told One News on 5 May 2013 the man had been turned away from the ordination process

“by reason of the defendant not being chaste in terms of canons of the Anglican Church.”  The New Zealand church follows the guidelines reiterated by Lambeth 1998 resolution 1.10 and understands the chaste relationship to be marriage between a man and a woman or celibacy in singleness.

In a comment posted on twitter New Zealand Anglican blogger the Rev Peter Carrell argued were the plaintiff successful in his lawsuit he had overcome the problem that “there is no mechanism to force a Bishop to ordain” someone “if the bishop does not want to do that” under the church’s canons.

Decisions reached by human rights review tribunal can be appealed to higher tribunals, but their decisions are legally enforceable.