Episcopal Bishops Draft Prayer for Homosexuals

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Episcopal bishops have authorized the church to start drafting an official prayer for homosexual couples.
    
Wednesday's decision was another step in the Episcopal Church's recent acceptance of the homosexual community.

The bishops voted 104-30 at the Episcopal General Convention to "collect and develop theological resources and liturgies" for blessing homosexual couples.

Many Episcopal dioceses already allow clergy to bless same-sex couples, but there is no official liturgy for the ceremonies in the denomination's Book of Prayer.

The church also recently voted to end its ban on allowing openly gay bishops.

Episcopal conservatives who have stayed with the denomination through the recent votes predicted the already splintering Anglican fellowship would fracture.

"For many, this is the final straw with members of the wider Anglican Communion," said Bishop William Love of Albany, N.Y. "It's breaking my heart to see the church destroy itself in the manner in which we seem to be doing."

The prayer for same-sex couples will be considered at the next national meeting in 2012.

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