Anglican primates sanction Scottish Episcopal Church for allowing same-sex weddings

After a week-long meeting in Canterbury, the Anglican primates have decided to exclude the Scottish Episcopal Church from ecumenical and leadership roles in the Anglican Communion as a form of sanction for its decision to start officiating same-sex weddings.

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby speaks during a service of thanksgiving for Queen Elizabeth's 90th birthday at St Paul's Cathedral in London, Britain, June 10, 2016. | REUTERS / Ben Stansall / Pool

In a news conference during the meeting, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said a lot of the Anglican primates were disappointed with the SEC's vote for same-sex marriage. He said the decision to impose sanctions on the church was unanimous, the BBC detailed.

"People were disappointed, they were angry but it was a very different mood to previous primates' meetings," said Archbishop Welby.

He added: "It was more like a family having to face the fact that something's happened that is causing grief, than a club that doesn't like one of its members.

The SEC had voted in June to make slight modifications to the canon law so that same-sex couples could get married in church. Last month, the U.K.'s first Anglican same-sex wedding was officiated in Edinburgh, and other similar ceremonies have taken place in Glasgow and Moray after that.

In response to news of the sanctions, SEC primus Rt Rev Mark Strange said they will keep doing their role in the Anglican Communion. However, he said they will perform that duty now according to the "belief that love means love."

Meanwhile in Perth, an Anglican priest who has been openly supporting same-sex marriage has been suspended as Rector of the Darlington-Bellevue congregation at St. Cuthbert's church. Bishop Kate Wilmot, the church administrator, announced that Father Chris Bedding had been subjected to "clergy discipline," SBS reported.

Father Bedding's suspension came after a senior member filed a complaint over the priest's social media posts and participation in comedy acts criticizing the church. He will remain suspended until the church's professional standards board holds a trial over the issue.

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