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God in love unites us – same sex marriage

25th August 2022: WMC
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God in love unites us

Dear All,

You will no doubt recall that in the summer of 2021 the Methodist Conference passed a number of resolutions in connection with the report "God in love unites us'.

Amongst other things, this granted permission for individual Methodist Churches to conduct same-sex weddings on their premises, subject of course, to the approval of the Church Council acting in their role as Managing Trustees. Also included was a conscience clause for Methodist Ministers allowing them to decline being the authorised person for such services if they wished.

Discussions and open meetings around the "God in love unites us" took place within our Circuit and this church, giving an opportunity to those who wished to share their views, hopes and concerns.

Our Church Council met on Wednesday 27th July 2022 to consider how as a church we wished to respond to these changes.

As you would expect, our Church Council reflected carefully and prayerfully on this issue. The vote on the resolutions was undertaken by a secret ballot. The Church Council voted unanimously in favour of same-sex marriage, thereby allowing same-sex weddings to take place on our church premises.

As your Minister I am happy to conduct same-sex weddings.

We are currently in the process of completing the necessary paperwork to submit to the Superintendent Registrar of the Oxford Registration District.

This decision is a recognition of who we are and a practical demonstration of the kind of church we seek, under God's guidance, to be, building on our strong tradition of being a welcoming, accepting, understanding and inclusive church.

We will of course, be informing our ecumenical partners via the Wantage and Grove Church Partnership of our decision as well as making it known to our town and wider community.

I am aware however that some may find our decision difficult.

The Methodist Connexion speaks powerfully about the truth contained within the notion of "living with contradictory convictions". This recognises that although not everyone agrees on everything, we nonetheless, recognise the importance of the truths which bind us together as well as the issues which currently divide us.

If you have any questions or wish to discuss this further, please feel free to contact me.

With love and God Bless


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