Anglican parishes on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands can now seek permission to formally bless married homosexual couples.
Bishop James Cowan of the Diocese of British Columbia, in a letter dated Thursday, announced the creation of guidelines and a rite to be used in the blessing of same-sex unions. The guidelines and rites took effect Jan. 1.
“It is my hope that those who now have this opportunity open to them may use it as an aid in their growth in Christ and His love for the world in which we live,” wrote Cowan.
The letter affects the 45 parishes with about 10,000 members in what, for historical reasons, is called the Diocese of British Columbia, although it only includes Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands.