Since the second century after Jesus, church discussions of sexuality have never been simply about intimate sexual expression between people: They’ve been about the social order, church order and moral boundaries. That hardly renders them insignificant, of course, and certainly not insincere.
But controversial social issues as critical church issues does render a mysterious subject—our sexuality—a publicly contested one. Is it a surprise, then, that legislatures and Churchwide Assemblies now and again put sex near the top of their restless agendas?
Take questions of ordination, celebrating the sacraments, performing marriages and blessing unions. These sound quintessentially “churchy.” But dare women do such things?
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