Barbados made a forward step recently in announcing that it plans to recognise same-sex unions, but that position does not have the support of the Anglican Church.
Reverend Michael Maxwell, the head of the Anglican Church in Barbados, says his church will stick to its position that is coming from the 1998 Lambeth Conference of Anglican Bishops in England where it was decided that marriage is a lifelong union of a man and a woman.
“They would have made a statement abiding by the principles that we understand the Scripture outlined to us, of the fact that a marriage is really between a male and a female. It is the best arrangement towards family life,” he told Barbados Today.
In her throne speech on September 15, Governor-General Dame Sandra Mason stated that Barbados was preparing to recognize same-sex unions so that these couples would not be discriminated against. She, however, noted that it is not a decision to allow same-sex marriages. That decision, she said, would be made by people of Barbados in a referendum.
But Maxwell insists that the Anglican Church’s position has not changed.
“The position really is that our church continues to stand against what it considers to be same-sex marriages. Civil union is, of course, where the Government itself is putting in their own spin on the whole thing in terms of not being discriminatory, in terms of persons’ rights of being able to have freedom of choice as what they see as their way of life,” he said.
The clergyman also noted that his interpretation is that these unions would not be blessed or condoned by the church.