Victoria’s largest Anglican church moves toward equality

Same-sex union blessings are a step in right direction, parishioners say

Kit Pearson

Better late than never.

The congregation at Victoria’s Christ Church Cathedral voted overwhelmingly last week to allow same-sex blessings in the church, more than a decade after Vancouver-area Anglican churches did the same.

“The Anglican church has been talking about this for more than 30 years,” Rev. Logan McMenamie says.

“In some ways it’s disabled us, but it’s an important decision. It’s really a justice issue.”

The 148-14 vote in favour of the blessings means gay couples can now hold such ceremonies inside Christ Church Cathedral, although McMenamie still cannot conduct the legal portion of same-sex ceremonies.

“The vote was a formal recognition that we are welcome and we are equal,” says parish member Kit Pearson, who along with her partner, Katherine Farris, has been attending the church for five years.

“Of course, it’s not absolutely equal because we can’t get married. … It’s just a step along the way.”

Pearson, 66, says she and Farris have never experienced prejudice under the cathedral’s roof.

They have chosen to remain a part of the Anglican church despite its delayed embrace of homosexual equality.

“I think a church, like any other institution, is run by humans, and humans have many faults,” she says. “You could be married in the hall by a justice of the peace, then go into the church and have your marriage blessed, which is a little ridiculous.”

McMenamie laments the parish members he has lost because of the slow changes, but said more progress will be made at upcoming diocese gatherings.

“We’re now one of six dioceses in Canada that permits same-sex blessings,” he says.

James Cowan, the outgoing bishop of the Anglican Diocese of B.C., formally authorized same-sex blessings in January.

Cowan oversees parishes on southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands, while the Anglican diocese for Vancouver-area parishes was the first in Canada to allow same-sex blessings in 2002.

“I think it’s a very good thing for the church,” McMenamie said. “We want to stay together, learn together, grow together.”

Just Posted

Two puppies snatched from East Sooke home

Anyone with information asked to contact Sooke RCMP

Saanich teen helps save three people from the Gorge

53-year-old male who was submerged is expected to recover

Moving Trans History Forward conference aimed at more than LGBTQ community

UVic’s Aaron Devor: “We’re all here to learn from each other”

Large fire destroys home on McClure Street in Victoria

Fire crews dispatched to the 1100-block shortly before noon Monday

Driver puts brand new truck into friend’s house

No one hurt, house damaged in Tillicum area

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

Comox Valley Valley lotto ticket worth $2 million

Someone who purchased a lottery ticket in the Comox Valley was chanelling… Continue reading

Pro-Trump protest sign with F-word is OK, court rules

Judges say Ontario man can protest publicly, even using vulgar language

VIDEO: Police officer looking for distracted drivers gets hit by truck

Road safety investigator clipped by trailer while patrolling busy intersection

YVR wants you to help name three new puppies

Say hello to the Vancouver Airport’s new assistance pups

Man dies in crash on Island Highway

Man thrown from his vehicle, alcohol believed to be a factor in accident near Parksville

Suspect who attacked autistic man in Ontario could be from B.C.’s south coast: police

29-year-old man was sent to hospital with serious injuries

Woman struck and killed by self-driving Uber vehicle

Ride-hailing company suspends all road-testing of such vehicles in U.S. and Canada

Spring snow melt uncovers dirty needles in B.C. city

Vernon residents are upset with number of needles being found around town with spring melt

Most Read