The House of Deputies at the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, USA (ECUSA) voted yesterday to consent to Canon Gene Robinson's election as Bishop-coadjutor of the Diocese of New Hampshire. The final decision now rests with the House of Bishops, which will take up Canon Robinson's consent at 2pm today. In a vote by orders, lay deputies voted 63 in favour and 32 against, with 13 votes being divided. Clergy deputies voted 65 in favour, 31 against and 12 divided. The vote by orders meant that each diocese had one vote each in clerical and lay orders. The adoption required a majority in the affirmative in each order. If the diocesan vote in either order was divided, it was recorded and not added to the affirmative total, effectively counting in the negative. Speaking at a press conference shortly after the vote by orders took place, the Revd George Werner, President of the House of Deputies, said: "God and scripture are so much bigger than us. The message it [the vote] sends is that our God is not a one dimensional God." He added that he has never felt as uplifted in prayer as he has this week and his hope is that "the Anglican Communion will understand we are doing the best to discern God's will". The American Anglican Council issued a statement responding to the vote saying that it is "deeply grieved by the decision" and that it is "a tragic decision that leads the Episcopal Church to the brink of shattering the Anglican family". Canon Gene Robinson talked to the media afterwards saying that he looked forward to tomorrow's vote and to being a symbol for God and the church. Robinson, 56, was divorced from his wife about 16 years ago. They have two children. he has been living with his partner Mark Andrews, for the past 15 years. Source: Anglican Communion News Service
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