The Rev. Eric Turner of Central Florida spoke against the resolution, proposing an amendment that would eliminate the list in the non-discrimination canon, which includes “race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disabilities or age.”
“We need to stop this process of adding a new minority every time one becomes vogue or politically correct,” Turner said.
The Rev. Charles Holt of Central Florida supported the amendment, saying adding more categories to the canon may be counter-productive.
“One thing I can say is that we are the most welcoming Christian organization on this planet. We do not disc-
The Rev. James Lewis of South Carolina
riminate against anyone,” Holt said. “Laying down the law to force someone not to discriminate will only harden hearts. The law doesn’t soften hearts. The only way to soften hearts is to speak the truth in love.”
The Rev. Canon James Lewis of South Carolina also opposed the resolution, saying he needed more clarity on the definition of “gender identity and expression.”
“Foundational institutions in the U.S. are under assault from the culture, further fragmenting the United States,” said Charles Holt, a rector at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church and School in Lake Mary, Fla., who spoke in opposition of the move, seeing the liturgy in contradiction to the Book of Common Prayer, which defines marriage as between a man and woman. “To change liturgies would not find acceptance in the wider church and would be an affront to unity.”
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Leaders in the denomination avoided attempts to change the definition of marriage as it would take significant efforts to change the Book of Common Prayer, which describes marriage as between a man and a woman.
“The debate over marriage is over technicalities, when we can call a spade a spade. If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, it’s a duck,” said Charles Holt, an evangelical rector at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church and School in Lake Mary, Florida. Holt spoke against the proposal in Tuesday’s debate.
Holt described evangelicals who oppose same-sex rites but want to remain in the denomination like a similar kind of marriage.
“We want to have the spirit of Martin Luther, who wanted to reform the church from within,” he told CT, noting that Luther was eventually disciplined out of the Catholic Church. “We’re called to be faithful to the unfaithful and called to love those who would delight in our departure.”
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