Church of England votes in favour of blessings for same-sex unions

The Church of England will offer church blessings to same-sex couples in civil marriages in a profound shift in its stance on homosexuality after a historic vote by its governing body.

After an impassioned debate lasting more than eight hours, the C of E’s national assembly, the General Synod, voted by 250 votes to 181 to back a proposal by bishops intended to put an end to years of painful divisions and disagreement over sexuality.

But heartfelt speeches from both those advocating full equality for LGBTQ+ Christians and those arguing that traditional biblical teaching on marriage and sex must be upheld signalled that the debate is likely to continue.

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