The blessing of a same-sex partnership is contrary to church doctrine and not acceptable, the president of the Swiss Bishops Conference told Swiss public television, SRF, on Thursday.
The Swiss Bishops Conferenceexternal link spent three days discussing the blessing of same-sex couples at their meeting in Geneva, but came to the conclusion that a partnership between two members of the same sex does not fulfil the Catholic Church’s definition of marriage – restricted to a relationship between a man and a woman – and thus cannot be blessed.
The discussion was prompted by disagreement over the blessing of a lesbian couple in the Swiss canton of Uri by priest Wendelin Büchli in October 2014. Büchli was dismissed from his post by Vitus Huonder, the Bishop of Chur, but refused to accept his dismissal and hand in his resignation.
The Conference supported the decision made by Bishop Huonder and said that such decisions fall under the competence of the bishops of Chur and Lausanne.
According to the Conference president, Markus Büchel, changing the doctrine of the Catholic Church does not lie within the bishops’ competence. This can be done only by the Pope or the Church Council.