First same sex Anglican church wedding

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Image caption Alistair Dinnie (left) and Peter Matthews married at St John’s Church in Edinburgh

The first same-sex Anglican church wedding in the UK has taken place in Edinburgh.

Peter Matthews and Alistair Dinnie made history when they were married at St John’s Church, run by the Scottish Episcopal Church (SEC), two weeks ago.

Other same-sex weddings have been held in churches in Glasgow and Moray since.

In June, the SEC voted to amend canon law and allow same-sex couples to be married in church during its General Synod in Edinburgh.

The Rev Markus Dunzkofer, the rector of St John’s, told the BBC Scotland news website that it was a “privilege and an honour” to marry the couple on 16 September.

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He said: “I’m delighted that the two of them tied the knot and had a marriage in a church service.

“Their love that they have for each other is quite obvious. It has nurtured not just me but many members of the congregation.

“They are very active and supportive members of the church and they do so much voluntary work, we wouldn’t be where we are without them.”

Lifelong union

Rev Donzkofer said Mr Dinnie was a member of the church choir and the music during the service was “absolutely fantastic”.

He added: “This was the right wedding for the right people and a wonderful celebration of their love for each other and the love we’ve got for them.”

However, it could lead to action being taken against the church by the Anglican Communion, the international association of the world’s third largest Christian movement, at a meeting next week.

SEC members voted to remove the doctrinal clause which stated that marriage is a “union of one man and one woman”, replacing it with a clause which asserts that clergy who do not wish to preside over same-sex weddings will not be compelled to do so “against their conscience”.

The Secretary General of the Anglican Communion said the SEC’s decision puts it “at odds with the majority stance that marriage is the lifelong union of a man and a woman”.

Last year, the US Episcopal Church was suspended from participating in decision-making and prevented from representing Anglicans in meetings with other Christians and faith groups after it backed equal marriage.

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