The Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement has welcomed the Church of Scotland's "move towards the acceptance of ministers in same sex relationships".
It has also welcomed positive gestures towards the blessing of same sex relationships involving life-long commitments.
Christians working for inclusion say the vote is a significant move towards full equality in the Kirk, but there will be a two-year moratorium during which ministers and deacons ordained before 31 May 2009 who are in same-sex relationships may be inducted into pastoral positions.
A commission is to be set up which will report in 2013 before a final decision on the issue of lesbian and gay ordination is taken.
The Rev Sharon Ferguson, Chief Executive of LGCM, commented: “We welcome this significant step forward towards a fully inclusive church and acknowledge the work of One Kirk in this respect. Clearly there is much work still to be done to win over all members of the Kirk but the outcome of Monday’s General Assembly debate and vote is encouraging.”
Affirmation Scotland (http://www.affirmationscotland.org.uk/) has also played a major role in recent developments.
The appointment of the Rev Scott Rennie, an openly gay man, to Queen's Cross Church in Aberdeen caused much controversy and threatened to split the Church two years ago.
It has been proposed that one in five members of the Kirk have threatened to leave if it is agreed that lesbian and gay people can be ordained.
Significantly though, there is also much support for the Kirk’s inclusive policies with one in ten saying they would leave if the Kirk ruled against ordination, LGCM observes.