The governing bodies of the U.S. Episcopal Church have approved a rite for the blessing of same sex marriages and extended the church’s nondiscrimination policy to include transgender people, making it the first major U.S. religion to do so. According to Reuters, the Episcopalian Chamber of Bishops met at the church’s General Convention in Indianapolis on Monday and voted overwhelmingly to approve the measures, prompting activist Rev. Lowell Grisham of the pro-equality group Chicago Consultation to say, “Today the Episcopal Church affirmed the human dignity of a deeply stigmatised population that is far too often victim to discrimination, bullying and abuse.”
Activist Donna Cartwright, a founding member of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), spoke to Raw Story from the convention in Indianapolis.
“We’ve worked hard on this for a number of years,” Cartwright said, “This is a great day.”