The Dallas News reports: “Same-sex couples in Dallas and seven other Episcopal dioceses will now be able to marry at their home church even if their local bishop objects, according to a resolution passed Friday by Episcopal church leaders at their triennial convention in Austin.
The decision has particular implications in Dallas because it’s one of eight U.S. dioceses that have not authorized such ceremonies, according to the Religion News Service.
“It’s tremendously exciting,” said Casey Shobe, rector of the Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration in Dallas. He said he looks forward to allowing same-sex couples in his congregation the opportunity to marry. “For the last three years, there was no access whatsoever.”
Under the new rules, local priests can now perform ceremonies with gender-neutral language at the couple’s request. Dallas Bishop George Sumner said Friday afternoon that in those circumstances, he would reach out to a neighboring bishop to oversee the ceremony.
He said debate on the issue was like a “family argument” in which progressive Episcopalians worked to come to an agreement that would make more traditional dioceses like the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas comfortable.”