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According to the Episcopal News Service the Bishop of the Diocese of San Joaquin, CA, the Right Reverend Chester Talton, has announced that starting Today, The Feast of Pentecost, clergy in the Diocese may now begin blessing the unions of same-sex couples.

From the Episcopal News Service:

Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin Bishop Chester Talton has told diocesan clergy that as of the Sunday of Pentecost, June 12, they may bless what a press release called "sacred unions."

The June 7 release said that, following consideration by the diocese's Equality Commission, "the clergy in the Diocese of San Joaquin may perform blessings of same-gender civil marriages, domestic partnerships and relationships which are lifelong committed relationships characterized by 'fidelity, monogamy, mutual affection and respect, careful, honest communication, and the holy love which enables those in such relationships to see in each other the image of God.' "

The story points out that  +Talton warns that because neither churchwide Canon law  nor the law of the State of California yet allow it, they may not solemnize the (civil) marriage of such couples.

Continued:

San Joaquin's decision came in part, the release said, in response to General Convention Resolution C056 which states that "bishops, particularly those in dioceses within civil jurisdictions where same-gender marriage, civil unions, or domestic partnerships are legal, may provide generous pastoral response to meet the needs of members of this church."

The Episcopal Church has long been working on establishing a canon which would respond to the issue of same-sex marriage on a church-wide basis. A report on this progress will be delivered at the 77th General Convention next year. So far, decisions on whether or not to bless same-sex unions and civil marriages has been on a diocese-by-diocese basis.

This is good news!

++++++++++++++++++++++++

A PRAYER REQUEST:

Kossack arizonablue wrote me a KosMail the other day and requested that the Anglican Kossacks community pray for her friend Ron. She wrote, in part,

His name is Ron, and he had prostate cancer 2 years ago, and he went through the operation and chemo, but the cancer is back and in his spine.

He plays guitar, and he's good at it, and he writes his own music, and he's like Dylan, but his voice is better.

He had an operation on his spine that has left him paralyzed on his left side from his armpit and on down.

He can no longer play guitar, and he's in the hospital, and he's dying.

Please keep Ron and arizonablue in your thoughts and prayers.

AMEN.

Originally posted to Anglican Kossacks on Sun Jun 12, 2011 at 02:24 PM PDT.

Also republished by California politics and Spiritual Organization of Unapologetic Liberals at Daily Kos.

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