Couple's 'first gay church wedding'

Witney Gazette: A same-sex wedding in Dorset is believed to be the first held in a church. A same-sex wedding in Dorset is believed to be the first held in a church.

A same-sex couple have married in what is believed to be the UK's first gay wedding held in a church.

Jan Tipper and Barb Burden tied the knot at the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) in Bournemouth, Dorset, on Saturday.

The law allowed same-sex couples to marry on March 29, but this was the first ceremony to be conducted in a religious building, the MCC says.

Reverend Dwayne Morgan, who officiated at the ceremony, said the church had taken pride in "celebrating diversity" on the "historic day".

Ms Burden and Ms Tipper, who have attended MCC for 15 years, said they were surprised to discover their wedding was a first.

"To get married in our church was very significant to us," Ms Tipper said. "Even though we've been together for almost 19 years it didn't feel right for us to have just a blessing or even a Civil Partnership.

"We've hoped for years for the opportunity to legally marry and once it became possible we knew it was time for us to tie the knot and to do it before God in our church with our friends and family."

The church, based in Pokesdown, was registered for same-sex marriages when the recent changes in the law took effect at the end of March.

Ms Burden added: "As it's been approved since 29 March, we assumed there had already been others who had taken advantage. Unfortunately it shows the lack of effective ministry by most churches to gay people in so many ways."

MCC was established in Bournemouth in 1979 and is associated with the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches, which has churches in more than 40 countries.

Rev Morgan said: "We have been offering wedding services for same-sex couples for many years in our church because we believe that God blesses the love of two people no matter what their gender.

"But to finally have the Government fully recognise their love by giving them complete legal status as a married couple is a blessing for everyone.

"We are extremely pleased that the Government didn't just listen to those churches that wanted to completely block same-sex couples from the right to have their marriage consecrated in their place of worship, but heard the voices of the minority of people of faith who believe that God doesn't discriminate.

"We are grateful to all those who have struggled for the rights of gay people for so many years that has led us to this historic day."

Rev Morgan added that the change in the law to allow gay marriage meant the Government had "finally caught up with us".

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

5:57pm Tue 15 Apr 14

Oscar 12 says...

Just how bona fide is the Metropolitan Church? Are the claims that it is actually sponsored from the USA in any way true? Plenty of ideologies have made use of religion before - is this an example of another bridgehead for Third Stage Imperialism being established here in the UK?
Just how bona fide is the Metropolitan Church? Are the claims that it is actually sponsored from the USA in any way true? Plenty of ideologies have made use of religion before - is this an example of another bridgehead for Third Stage Imperialism being established here in the UK? Oscar 12
  • Score: 0

3:22pm Wed 16 Apr 14

annajayne says...

Oscar 12 wrote:
Just how bona fide is the Metropolitan Church? Are the claims that it is actually sponsored from the USA in any way true? Plenty of ideologies have made use of religion before - is this an example of another bridgehead for Third Stage Imperialism being established here in the UK?
UFMCC is a worldwide denomination founded by Rev Troy Perry in Los Angeles in 1968.

The UK churches are affiliated to UFMCC, but independently run - MCC Bournemouth is managed by several trustees (I'm one of them) along with the Pastor. There's no external funding, so each church is locally self supporting (which is hard, but we generally manage).

Typically new MCC churches are founded locally, but we can call on the expertise of UFMCC if need be. The nearest church to Bicester is probably North London (http://mccnorthlond
on.org.uk/).

Anna Metcalfe (@annajayne)
Trustee, MCC Bournemouth
http://mccchurch.co.
uk/
[quote][p][bold]Oscar 12[/bold] wrote: Just how bona fide is the Metropolitan Church? Are the claims that it is actually sponsored from the USA in any way true? Plenty of ideologies have made use of religion before - is this an example of another bridgehead for Third Stage Imperialism being established here in the UK?[/p][/quote]UFMCC is a worldwide denomination founded by Rev Troy Perry in Los Angeles in 1968. The UK churches are affiliated to UFMCC, but independently run - MCC Bournemouth is managed by several trustees (I'm one of them) along with the Pastor. There's no external funding, so each church is locally self supporting (which is hard, but we generally manage). Typically new MCC churches are founded locally, but we can call on the expertise of UFMCC if need be. The nearest church to Bicester is probably North London (http://mccnorthlond on.org.uk/). Anna Metcalfe (@annajayne) Trustee, MCC Bournemouth http://mccchurch.co. uk/ annajayne
  • Score: 0
Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree