From my friend Fr. Blake’s blog:
The Archbisop of Westminster said at a recent press following the Bishop bi-annual meeting:
We would want to emphasise that civil partnerships actually provide a structure in which people of the same sex who want a lifelong relationship [and] a lifelong partnership can find their place and protection and legal provision,
As a Church we are very committed to the notion of equality so that people are treated the same across all the activities of life. The Church holds great store by the value of commitment in relationships and undertakings that people give. Stability in society depends upon the reliability of commitments that people give. That might be in offering to do a job but especially in their relationships with one another. Equality and commitment are both very important and we fully support them.
He did go on to say, “equality and commitment do not amount to marriage”.
As is pointed out here, “The bishops conference position on civil partnerships appears to have shifted from 2003 when it told the Government that civil unions would not promote the common good and we therefore strongly oppose them”.
It appears that the 2003 CDF document Legal Recognition of Homosexual Unions only applies to Marriage, itself not “civil partnerships. I had obviously misunderstood as the bishops once did.