South Africa News

News that impact on the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer communities of South Africa

South Africa's Court of the Presbytery ruled that its clergy are free to marry gays

Presbyterians CAN Marry Gays

13 December 2015

Back in November this year QL reported on two Presbyterian ministers who got in trouble with their church authorities for marrying gay folk in Johannesburg South Africa.

At the time Reverend Martin Young, from St Columba’s Presbyterian Church in Parkview, and Reverend Hansie Wolmarans were accused by a Cape Town minister of violating the doctrines of the Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa but the Court of the Presbytery of Egoli recently ruled that the ministers are free to bless same-sex couples because under church policy there is no “express or implied prohibition against ministers conducting same-sex civil unions.”

Therefore the two Johannesburg Presbyterian ministers are allowed by the church to continue to conduct and bless same-sex unions.

Meanwhile, reaction to the news on social media was predominantly positive, with congregants and supporters calling it “brilliant news” and proclaiming that “love triumphs.”

It must be noted that while same-sex unions was legalised in South Africa in 2006, it remains the prerogative of churches to recognise or bless these unions according to their own doctrine.

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