Cathedral begins offering same-sex weddings
A cathedral in Scotland has announced it will become the first in the country to begin offering same-sex weddings.
Last month, the Scottish Episcopal Church has become the first mainstream branch of Anglicanism in the UK to allow same-sex weddings.
The church made the change after bishops, clergy and laity all voted overwhelmingly in favour of permitting same-sex weddings.
Following the announcement, St Mary’s Cathedral in Glasgow has become the first to begin taking bookings from same-sex couples.
The clergy of the cathedral have been given permission by the Bishop of Glasgow and Galloway to conduct such services following a unanimous vote to go ahead by the cathedral’s vestry, its board of trustees.
The Provost of the Cathedral, the Very Rev Kelvin Holdsworth said: “It is hugely exciting to open up wedding services to all couples who want to get married.
“People at St Mary’s were part of the campaign to allow gay and lesbian couples to get married in Scotland so it is not surprising that we would want to be able to offer such weddings in the cathedral itself.
“St Mary’s Cathedral, Glasgow is one of the most stunning places that anyone can get married. It is wonderful that more people now have the chance of coming here for their special day.
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“I want to live in a world where same-sex couples can feel safe walking down the street hand in hand and in which they can feel joy walking hand in hand down the aisle of a church too.”
People may head to Scotland from other parts of the UK to be married in Scotland. The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act in England and Wales placed a legal ban on same-sex weddings inside Church of England churches.
Speaking about this, the Provost said: “We already have one booking from a couple coming up from England who can’t get married in their local Church of England parish.
“We are glad to be able to welcome them and expect there will be many others who will follow them”.
The lay representative of the cathedral congregation, Dr Beth Routledge said: “St Mary’s Cathedral aspires to be a church which is open, inclusive and welcoming.
“It feels fantastic to see another step being taken to make that even more real.
“When members of the congregation go to Glasgow Pride later this year, we’ll have a real sense of having helped to bring about greater equality for members of the LGBT communities.”