The general synod of the Dutch Reformed Church will be asked by its Western Cape moderator to consider accepting homosexual relationships and pastors, Beeld reported on Thursday.
Western Cape moderator Dr Frits Gaum said the proposals were the collective plea of 26 church parishioners, among them Gaum’s own son, Laurie.
The issue was “a very divisive one in churches all over the world”, but the general synod should consider the request “in a sober, scripture-guided manner”, Gaum said.
In the proposal, the 26 request that a significant section of church policy, announced in 2007, should remain unchanged. This included the decision that only the union between a man and a woman could be regarded as a marriage.
However, the 2007 policy also states the church will not accept homosexual relationships as an alternative to marriage.
The new proposal asks the general synod to accept there could be a permanent and unique relationship between two people of the same sex.
In 2007, the church also ruled that gays could become pastors, on condition they led celibate lives. Gaum said he would ask the church to drop the celibacy clause.