Dealing with homosexuality

April 19, 2000

At least two other denominations are dealing with issues related to homosexuality at meetings this summer.

The Episcopal General Convention, meeting in Denver July 5-14, will receive a response to an assignment it gave its Standing Committee on Liturgy and Music at the 1997 convention. The panel was to study the theological impact of rituals of same-sex blessing in order to provide a background for the writing of such liturgies. The committee, which wrote no trial liturgies, proposes that the question be left up to each diocese.

The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), which convenes in Long Beach, California, June 24-July 1, will see efforts to reverse the effects of a constitutional amendment that bars practicing gays and lesbians from being ordained or serving as either lay or clergy elders. Although last year’s assembly declared a moratorium on taking up issues related to homosexuality, one year’s assembly cannot bind the next. Another concern is whether PCUSA clergy should be allowed to perform same-sex unions.