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Sydney Anglicans 'preparing to ban same-sex weddings, transgender ideology'

File: St Andrews Anglican church in Sydney Source: AAP

The Sydney Anglican church is preparing to introduce a new policy that will ban same-sex weddings and the promotion of “transgender ideology” on church property.

Sydney's Anglican church is reportedly set to debate a policy which would prohibit buildings owned by the diocese, including schools, from hosting same-sex wedding ceremonies and receptions.  

According to documents seen by Fairfax, the policy specifies that it would be inappropriate for the property of the church to be used to advocate “expressions of human sexuality contrary to our doctrine of marriage” and “transgender ideology (e.g gender-fluidity)”.

The documents also state that the church sees the debate around the ability of schools to fire gay teachers as a "key threat".

 

The church crackdown was a "silencing act" designed to quell dissenting voices, said Joel Hollier, a gay Anglican and former pastor who co-chairs Equal Voices. 

"The message is potently clear - no priest or pastor has the right to speak in favour of marriage equality," he told Fairfax. 

"Nor are they able to speak freely to the reality of parishioners experiencing gender dysphoria. Churches that suggest otherwise will face the consequences."

The Anglican Diocese of Sydney donated $1 million to the failed ‘No’ campaign during the lead-up to the same-sex marriage postal survey.

At the time, the Archbishop of Sydney Glenn Davies said the donation came “at a critical moment” to allow the ‘No’ campaign to raise awareness “of the consequences of same-sex marriage for freedom of speech and freedom of religion”.

The report comes as the government refused to back down on releasing a controversial review into religious freedoms despite strong Senate pressure.

Mathias Cormann, the government's Senate leader, said on Wednesday that a response to the report was yet to be considered by cabinet and the government would release it in "due course".

He said it was in the public interest for the full review, led by former Liberal minister Philip Ruddock, not to be released despite all 20 recommendations already being leaked to the media.

SBS News has contacted the diocese to seek comment.