Showing posts with label same-sex marriage. Show all posts
Showing posts with label same-sex marriage. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Statement by Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York and Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco on the "U.S. Supreme Court decisions June 26 striking down part of the Defense of Marriage Act and refusing to rule on the merits of a challenge to California’s Proposition 8":
Today is a tragic day for marriage and our nation. The Supreme Court has dealt a profound injustice to the American people by striking down in part the federal Defense of Marriage Act. The Court got it wrong. The federal government ought to respect the truth that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, even where states fail to do so. The preservation of liberty and justice requires that all laws, federal and state, respect the truth, including the truth about marriage. It is also unfortunate that the Court did not take the opportunity to uphold California’s Proposition 8 but instead decided not to rule on the matter. The common good of all, especially our children, depends upon a society that strives to uphold the truth of marriage. Now is the time to redouble our efforts in witness to this truth. These decisions are part of a public debate of great consequence. The future of marriage and the well-being of our society hang in the balance.
Sad, just sad.  And I repeat my mantra: If marriage between a man and woman is foundational to the well-being of our society, why have not the cardinal and the archbishop done their duty by marrying and contributing to the good of society?  Oh yes, I know - celibacy.  Perhaps the church might reconsider the requirement for the well-being of society.

Sunday, June 2, 2013


THE Archbishop of Canterbury will call on the government this week to make further concessions in the same-sex marriage bill to protect those with moral objections to gay and lesbian weddings.

In a significant intervention during a debate in the House of Lords, Justin Welby is expected to urge ministers to ensure that faith schools and teachers who do not wish to promote gay marriage in class will be able to refuse to do so without penalty.

Welby, the head of the Church of England, is likely to reiterate the objections of the church to gays and lesbians being allowed to marry and his support for traditional marriage.
What about Justin Welby's pastoral duty to all the members of the Church of England?  What about Justin's earlier words of praise for gay relationships?  "You see gay relationships that are just stunning in the quality of the relationship."  And yet, he will say that the people in England "with moral objections" need to be protected from same-sex couples in "stunning" relationships being allowed to marry.  How likely is it that teachers in faith schools will be forced to promote gay marriage?  Such fear as is demonstrated in the concerns of Christian opponents of same-sex marriage, including Justin Welby, is quite troubling.   For heaven's sake, if you want protection against same-sex marriage, then don't marry a person of the same sex.

The link is to a teaser, as only subscribers to the Sunday Times are able to read the entire article.

Thanks to Ann for the link.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Wednesday, February 20, 2013


The video ad shows a surprising combination of supporters of gay marriage.  Throughout the country, support for same-sex marriage is increasingly seen as a matter of equality.

UPDATE: From ABC on Laura Bush:
The former first lady’s office told the Dallas Morning News that Bush had not given her consent to be part of the ad, and had asked that she be removed from it.

Thursday, February 7, 2013


There you have it. Same-sex marriage is not a particularly controversial issue for the vast majority of the members of the Anglican Communion; their minds are on other things.  Thus the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Church of England must speak against the passage of the bill making its way through Parliament which legalizes same-sex civil marriage in Britain.  I guess there's a kind of logic there, but I can't quite make it out.  Of course, the Church of England is the established church, which complicates the matter in ways I don't fully understand, but I don't see why the opinions of all the members of the churches in the Anglican Communion should affect legislation on civil marriage in Britain.

What about LGTB persons in England?  What does the Primate of All England offer in the way of pastoral care to same-sex couples who are members of the church and would like to be joined in a civil marriage ceremony?  Little in the way of empathy or compassion thus far.  An awareness that marriage equality is not simply an issue, but that the lives of real people will be affected by the legislation seems to be missing from the archbishop's commentary.  Let's hope the path is uphill from here.

Note: The interview took place before the vote in favor of the equal marriage bill in the House of Commons.  


As I've followed the struggle for marriage equality for LGTB persons, I see many similarities with the Civil Rights movement for equality for African-Americans here in the United States, which is not at all surprising as the fight for justice for any oppressed group will have parallels with the struggles of other groups.  Here in the US, the movement toward same-sex marriage equality is now state by state.  Gay marriage is legal in nine states: Connecticut, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont,  Washington, and the District of Columbia, with Illinois likely to follow soon.

Thanks to Colin Coward's real-time Facebook reports, I followed the debate in Britain's House of Commons on the bill to allow same-sex civil marriage in Britain preceding the overwhelming vote in favor.  The established Church of England's opposition to the bill, including a statement by the new Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, is a puzzlement, but I've addressed the matter briefly elsewhere.

Thanks to Kelvin Holdsworth for the link to quotes and a video of one of the most eloquent speeches in favor of the bill by MP David Lammy from Tottenham.

Separate is not equal. 

But there are still those that say that this is all unnecessary.

“Why do we need Gay Marriage when we already have Civil Partnerships”, they say.

“They are the same - separate but equal”, they claim.

Let me speak frankly.

“Separate but equal” is a fraud.

 “Separate but equal” is the language that tried to push Rosa Parks to the back of the bus.

“Separate but equal” is the motif that determined that black and white could not possibly drink from the same water fountain, eat at the same table or use the same toilets.

 “Separate but equal” are the words that justified sending black children to different schools from their white peers – schools that would fail them and condemn them to a life of poverty.

It is an excerpt from the phrasebook of the segregationists and the racists.

It is the same statement, the same ideas and the same delusion that we borrowed in this country to say that women could vote – but not until they were 30.

It is the same naivety that gave made my dad a citizen in 1956 but refused to condemn the landlords that proclaimed “no blacks, no Irish, no dogs”.

It entrenched who we were, who our friends could be and what our lives could become.

This was not “Separate but equal” but “Separate AND discriminated”,

 “Separate AND oppressed”.

 “Separate AND browbeaten”.

 “Separate AND subjugated”.

Separate is NOT equal, so let us be rid of it.

Because as long as there is one rule for us and another for them, we allow the barriers to acceptance to stand unchallenged.
Brilliant, heartfelt, and quite moving. 

Here is the link to the entire original speech that David Lammy intended to give but for the four-minute limit on backbench speeches.

UPDATE: France seems to have crossed a major hurdle in its progress toward the approval same-sex marriages. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


The good news:
Parliament took a historic step towards embracing full equality for gay people when MPs voted on Tuesday overwhelmingly in favour of equal marriage at the end of a charged Commons debate that exposed the deep rift over David Cameron's modernising agenda at the heart of the Conservative party.

The 225-vote majority, greeted with rare applause in the public gallery, was marred for the prime minister, who suffered a humiliating rebuff when more than half of the Conservative parliamentary party declined to support the government on an issue he has personally invested in.
The Church of England lags behind the secular government and the people of the country in its response to "Equal Civil Marriage". 
The Church of England cannot support the proposal to enable ―all couples, regardless of their gender, to have a civil marriage ceremony.

Such a move would alter the intrinsic nature of marriage as the union of a man and a woman, as enshrined in human institutions throughout history.
Note that the church's response is to civil marriage.  If, as is likely, the bill passes in the House of Lords and goes to the PM, no authority will force any church or clergy to officiate at same-sex marriages, but churches that wish to do so may move forward.  In fact, as an added protection, the law would ban the Church of England and the Church in Wales from performing same-sex marriages.

The statement that "the intrinsic nature of marriage as the union of a man and a woman" is "enshrined in human institutions throughout history" is nonsense.  Throughout history, marriage has had many different expressions, even in the Scriptures.

The further explanation of the church's position includes the following:
The Church‟s understanding of marriage

1. In common with almost all other Churches, the Church of England holds, as a matter of  doctrine and derived from the teaching of Christ himself, that marriage in general – and not just the marriage of Christians – is, in its nature, a lifelong union of one man with one woman.
As Molly Ivins would say, "You can't make this stuff up!"  The church allows divorce.  Maybe the explanation should be corrected to only one man and one woman at a time.  I favor the acceptance by the church of divorce and remarriage in certain circumstances for pastoral reasons, but to use the teaching of Jesus on marriage as a "lifelong union of one man with one woman" in order to condemn same-sex marriage, about which Jesus never said a word, is less than honest and not at all pastoral.

The new Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby weighed in with his opinion:
Speaking about the vote, the 57-year-old archbishop said: "I stand, as I have always stood over the last few months, with the statement I made at the announcement of my appointment, which is that I support the Church of England's position on this.

"We have made many statements about this and I stick with that."
What else could he say?  I guess...  Archbishop Justin said earlier, he will "listen to the voice of the LGBT communities and examine my own thinking."  One can only hope he has not given up on the plan.  The position of Archbishop of Canterbury is a bully pulpit.

Saturday, January 12, 2013


The Washington National Cathedral had been ready to embrace same-sex marriage for some time, though it took a series of recent events and a new leader for the prominent, 106-year-old church to announce Wednesday that it would begin hosting such nuptials.

The key development came last July when the Episcopal Church approved a ceremony for same-sex unions at its General Convention in Indianapolis, followed by the legalization of gay marriage in Maryland, which joined the District of Columbia. The national church made a special allowance for marriage ceremonies in states where gay marriage is legal.

Cathedral officials said the church will be among the first Episcopal congregations to implement a new rite of marriage adapted from the blessing ceremony for gay and lesbian couples that was approved last year by the Episcopal Church's national governing body.
Though I may be the last Episcopal blogger to note the announcement by Washington National Cathedral that it will host same-sex marriages, I am pleased and proud that the Episcopal cathedral, where so many historic events have taken place, will perform same-sex marriages early in the history of the practice of marriage equality in the Episcopal Church.

Sunday, December 30, 2012


Steven Bridges and Michael Snell, the first same-sex couple to be married in Maine

I invite you to celebrate the sixth day of Christmas, not with six geese a-laying, but with newly-weds or about-to-be-weds in Maine where the law allowing same-sex marriage went into effect at midnight on December 29.  Steven and Michael look so happy.  What a lovely Christmas gift.  Congratulations all you love-birds in Maine.  Why would anyone be against marriage between two adults who love each other and want to commit themselves to one another?

Besides, six geese a-laying around and about the house would make for quite a mess added to the partridge, turtle doves, French hens, calling (colly) birds, and pheasants, with yet more birds to come.

Friday, December 7, 2012


Statement on same-sex marriage by English Prime Minister David Cameron:
He said he did not want gay people to be "excluded from a great institution", but would not force any groups to hold ceremonies in their places of worship. 

Ministers will reveal their response to a consultation next week. MPs will be given a free vote on the issue.
The "Church of England" responded:
It is important to be clear that insistence on the traditional understanding of marriage is not knee-jerk resistance to change but is based on a conviction that the consequences of change will not be beneficial for society as a whole. Our concern is for the way the meaning of marriage will change for everyone, gay or straight, if the proposals are enacted. Because we believe that the inherited understanding of marriage contributes a vast amount to the common good, our defence of that understanding is motivated by a concern for the good of all in society.

The proposition that same-sex relationships can embody crucial social virtues is not in dispute. To that extent, the Prime Minister's claim that he supports same-sex marriage from conservative principles is readily understandable.  However, the uniqueness of marriage is that it embodies the underlying, objective, distinctiveness of men and women. This distinctiveness and complementarity are seen most explicitly in the biological union of man and woman which potentially brings to the relationship the fruitfulness of procreation.

To remove from the definition of marriage this essential complementarity is to lose any social institution in which sexual difference is explicitly acknowledged. To argue that this is of no social value is to assert that men and women are simply interchangeable individuals. To change the nature of marriage for everyone will be divisive and deliver no obvious legal gains given the rights already conferred by civil partnerships.
We believe that redefining marriage to include same-sex relationships will entail a dilution in the meaning of marriage for everyone by excluding the fundamental complementarity of men and women from the social and legal definition of marriage.

Given the absence of any manifesto commitment for these proposals - and the absence of any commitment in the most recent Queen's speech - there will need to be an overwhelming mandate from the consultation to move forward with these proposals and make them a legislative priority.

We welcome the fact that in his statement the Prime Minister has signalled he is abandoning the Government's earlier intention to distinguish between civil and religious marriage.  We look forward to studying the Government's detailed response to the consultation next week and to examining the safeguards it is proposing to give to Churches.
Except for the weak acknowledgement in the second paragraph that "same-sex relationships can embody crucial social virtues" and the references to the English Government and the Queen, the statement could have come from the Vatican.

Who wrote this anonymous press release in the name of the "Church of England"?  What minds came together to produce this rubbish?  Or was it just one person?   Judging from the people I know in the Church of England, the response most certainly does not express the mind of the entire church.  Was General Synod consulted?  Is it possible for the people in the head office of the Church of England to be more out of touch?   Many questions; no answers as of yet.

H/T to Simon Sarmiento at Thinking Anglicans.

UPDATE: While we're on the subject, please read Mark Harris' brilliant response to the "Church of England's" response to David Cameron's statement on same-sex marriage. Thank you.

Thursday, June 14, 2012


Here in PDF format is the Church of England's statement in response to the Home Office Consultation on Equal Civil Marriage, if you'd like to read it all.  The very first paragraph of The Church's understanding of marriage made me smile.
1. In common with almost all other Churches, the Church of England holds, as a matter of doctrine and derived from the teaching of Christ himself, that marriage in general – and not just the marriage of Christians – is, in its nature, a lifelong union of one man with one woman. 
 Well, there's sticky matter of divorce and remarriage, which is permitted by the church despite its understanding of marriage as a "lifelong union of one man with one woman," which seems to me to undermine their case against same-sex civil marriage from the very beginning.

Moving on...

Tim Ellis, Suffragan Bishop of Grantham:
‘ what way can the statements of the prelates be taken to be the mind of the Church of England in this and other related matters?’ For, in truth, the bishops in the media have not spoken for me or the way in which I understand this thorny matter and, I suspect, they do not speak for a sizeable minority or even majority with the life of the Church. However, it is possible that I will soon be approached by the local media to defend the position taken up by my colleagues and the pressure will be on to ‘toe the line’.
Tobias Haller at In a Godward Direction:
The authors hammer away on the alleged "complementarity" of the sexes as a necessary component of marriage without apparently recognizing either the circular nature of that argument or the dangerous tendency towards Christological heresy inherent in its anthropology. The circular nature of the argument is: “Marriage can only take place between a man and a woman because only a man and a woman are of different sexes.” This is, of course, merely restating the premise. The more dangerous, and heretical, trend of this argument lies in the suggestion that the sex difference implies a different order of being for men and women. This is known as sexism, and it undercuts the orthodox doctrine of the incarnation. One would think the church might be more sensitive to that issue, though one wonders how many English bishops actually believe the doctrine.
Alan Wilson, Suffragan Bishop of Buckingham:
The mightiest act of God is his commandment to love him as we love our crooked neighbour with all our crooked heart. It’s shockingly unconditional. Someone wrote to me last month to say it beggared his belief that a bishop should think that “Love thy neighbour as thyself” applied to homosexuals. It beggars this bishop’s belief that anyone should think that it doesn’t.
Themethatisme at conscientisation:
There is the biological usage of complementarity, (not definition) and 'tis this, that is liberally sprinkled through the document as the Bishops seek a good legalistic euphemism for saying men's bits are designed to fit ladies bits and you shouldn't be doing anything else with that arrangement. Which owes more to the traditional definition of the word in which 'This port complements the stilton' or 'that handbag really complements those shoes'.  The two becoming one and being something else, a new ensemble, a new flavour, a fresh expression.
I've suggested a rather long reading assignment for two reasons: The first is that I believe all four posts are worth reading whole and entire.  The second is that three out of the four bloggers are Church of England, all but Tobias, and the statement claims to speak for the church.  Since the statement was released unsigned, the posts quoted and linked above make it clear that whoever put together the statement does not speak for ALL members of the Church of England.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


Despite the headline, I should rather say a few persons in high places in the Church of England claim to speak for the entire church in the matter.
Introducing same-sex marriage could lead to the church being forced out of its role of conducting weddings on behalf of the state, the church claimed in a potentially explosive submission in response to the government's consultation on gay marriage, which closes on Thursday.
To get the churches out of the marriage business altogether sounds like a good idea rather than an explosion to me.  France does it rather well, with the religious ceremony of blessing (if desired) following the legal marriage in the registry office.  But I digress.

I'll let the English speak.

Giles Fraser is "spitting blood".
The Church of England says it is against gay marriage. Not in my name
I am furious about this ridiculous and unrepresentative statement from the Church of England on gay marriage
The church is no more a cartel of moral wisdom. And those of us who still stick with it – though there are days like today when this is increasingly hard – do so in the hope that it can be called back to a deeper moral seriousness that is not in hoc to bourgeois notions of respectability and prejudice.
Read the entire opinion piece.  As you see, Giles does not mince words.

Colin Coward is upset (to say the least!).
I woke this morning to the R4 Today programme’s news headlines about the Church of England’s response to the Government’s equal marriage consultation. I felt so angry. The Church has achieved another set of disastrous headlines thanks to its ill-considered submission. The Church looks like an institution in panic and crisis, terrified that the lesbian and gay hordes are about to breach the defences and destroy marriage in one decisive strategic move.
As you may or may not know the Danish Parliament recently approved same-sex marriages in churches in Denmark.

Layanglicana says, "Bring on the Vikings!" 
I know the first Viking invasion gave them rather a bad name (for raping, looting and pillaging, not to put too fine a point on it).

But that was after they had been cooped up for weeks in a long boat. The 21st century version would, I am sure, choose Easy Jet, and  be only slightly irritable as a result. A pint or two of lager and half a roasted sheep ought to mollify them sufficiently to be able to deal with the powers that be at Lambeth. And after all we don’t want them too amenable, the whole idea is to let them show who is boss.
There you have it - the word from England.

As a humble former colonial, I have a nerve to even think of offering an opinion, much less post on the matter on my wee blog, but here goes.  What in heaven's name does the 13 page document sent to the English Parliament have to do with the Gospel imperative of The Two Great Commandments to love God and love our neighbor and the Golden Rule to do as we would be done to?  Archbishops and senior bishops of the Church of England, answer me that.

UPDATE: Another voice from England - Erika in the comments...
the real disaster is what the publication has said to the members of the CoE itself.

- a small group of us claims the right to make public pronouncements on your behalf.

- we do not have to stick to the truth if it doesn't suit us. You may remember that we strongly opposed civil partnerships, but we will now launch a PR campaign trying to make those who don't remember this believe that we actually love gay people in a very cuddly way.

- we believe that everyone in this land should be bound by our definition of marriage, all the 98% of people who don't go to church but who are included in our elevated idea of ourselves as ministering to everyone in our parishes. And so we reserve the right to define marriage for all other faiths too and for all agnostics and atheists.

- we do not need to make the slightest warm pastoral noise about caring about the spiritual wellbeing of gay people. We can just casually dismiss their relationships as friendships without content. If we really believed that God creates them like this but that for some reason, baby Jesus cries if they hitch up, we would be full of sympathy and we would try what we could to make their God imposed loneliness more bearable. But, actually, we don't give a stuff as long as they don't threaten our order of things and keep quiet in their sinful moral morass.

THAT is what this document is saying and it's saying it to its own members.
Which is why I, for one, have had enough and have now left the church. I shall watch it with mild interest from the sidelines to see if it ever joins civilised society again.
Hear, hear!  

Saturday, June 2, 2012


Esther J Hamori does a nice summing-up of the biblical references to marriage which demonstrates clearly that one man and one woman was not always the biblical norm.
Opponents of marriage equality often appeal to the Bible to support their views. So what is this "biblical standard for marriage" we keep hearing about? Marriage in the Bible is not restricted to one man and one woman, or in fact to any one model. There is, however, a unifying theme to the diverse pictures of God-ordained marriages in the Bible, and it is that different kinds of unions are accepted in different places and times, evolving in tandem with broader cultural shifts.
Read the rest at The Huffington Post.

The sign below from Happy Place tickled my funny bone. 

Thanks to Tobias on Facebook for the link to the article.

Monday, May 21, 2012


Click on the chart for the larger view.

Above is Bosco's chart which illustrates marriage according to the Bible.  Well, it's not really  Bosco's chart, but I lifted it from his blog, and he does not know the origin, so I call it Bosco's chart.  We hear the phrase 'biblical marriage' tossed around quite often, along with 'redefining marriage', from folks who oppose same-sex marriage.  I will never hear or read those phrases again without laughing and thinking of the chart.

Biblical marriages are of such variety as to boggle the mind, and marriage has been redefined countless times through the ages.   If a person used either of the phrases to argue against same-sex marriage with me, I'd  ask them, "Of which type of biblical marriage do you speak?"

Then I'd whip out my copy of the chart, which I'd always carry with me, and say, "Pick one."

As for the charge of redefining marriage, the chart would demonstrate clearly that marriage has been redefined many times.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Nevermind the timing, the motivation, the political calculation, or whatever else may have affected his decision, President Obama did the right thing when he announced that he favors same-sex marriage.  Instead of carping, how about if we just take a victory lap?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012


Once Joe Biden made his announcement, I did not think Barack Obama would be far behind.  I doubt that Obama will lose votes because of the announcement.  The great majority of the folks who will be upset, would not have voted for the president anyway.  
 “I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors, when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together; when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married,” Obama told Roberts in an interview to appear on ABC's "Good Morning America" Thursday.

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Sunday, May 6, 2012


Joe Biden comes out in favor of same-sex marriage on Meet the Press:
GREGORY: Have your views evolved?

BIDEN: The good news is that as more and more Americans come to understand what this is all about is a simple proposition. Who do you love? Who do you love and will you be loyal to the person you love? And that’s what people are finding out what all marriages at their root are about. Whether they are marriages of lesbians or gay men or heterosexuals. [...]

GREGORY: You’re comfortable with same-sex marriage now?

BIDEN: Look, I am Vice President of the United States of America. The president sets the policy. I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women and heterosexual men marrying women are entitled to the same exact rights. All the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And quite frankly I don’t see much of a distinction beyond that. [...] I think Will & Grace probably did more to educate the American public than almost anything anybody has done so far. People fear that is different and now they’re beginning to understand.
Joe is probably right about the influence of the TV show Will & Grace.  Well, well.  Meet the Press is good for something besides giving cash and air time to tired, aging pundits with views left over from the 20th century.

Watch him.

H/T to Athenae at First Draft.

Saturday, April 28, 2012


From the Church Times in England:
AS A committed, Bible-believing Chris­tian, I am ashamed and ap­palled by the debate about gay marriage. My views are not those of my son, who is gay and who is now an atheist, but result from some ten years of reading, prayer, dis­cussion, and serious thought.

My son came out at the age of 20, having spent much of his previous ten years knowing that he was not growing up to feel attracted to girls, but to boys. I don’t think he even knew the word “gay” at the be­ginning of this process, but he knew that he was growing up differently.

 I am now convinced that homo­sexuality is a developmental condition that is not amenable to change at any psychological level; it is not a matter of choice; and is something that has caused many boys and girls to live in shame and fear from their early teens onwards. I know that my son had no access to other gay people through his adolescence, and that it was only at university that he was able to talk this through with hetero­sexual friends, finally coming to the conclusion that he was gay.

We, the Church, over centuries have perpetrated a great wickedness on these children and developing adults, forcing many to live by deceit, in failed heterosexual marriages, and even in an inability to form rela­tionships because of their own private hell.

At least the gay-rights cam­paigners have had the courage to stand up and work on some sort of social change. It is a pity that the Church did not do this in the first place.
A mother's cry from the heart, surely, and a cry that should touch other hearts and perhaps melt a few hearts of stone.  With great courage, Linda names wickedness for what it is.  With the mess that straight folks have made of marriage today, who are we to disrespect couples of the same sex who wish to love and cherish one another in faithful, committed relationships?  Who are we to decree that these couples may not call their relationships marriage?  And where is the church in all this?  Why are the civil authorities in England leading the way?  Linda speaks to her Church of England, but here in the Episcopal Church in the US, we still have a way to go, although we are headed in the right direction.   As Linda says, 'The Church should blaze a trail....'

H/T to Simon Sarmiento at Thinking Anglicans.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012


From the BBC:
Some members of the Anglican communion, including elements of the Church in Wales, have become more homophobic, claims a vicar who has resigned over the issue of gay marriage.

The Reverend Andrew Morton, vicar of Llangybi, Monmouthshire, is the first in Wales to step down over the issue.

He says he would have been willing to carry out such ceremonies.

The Church in Wales said it a "matter of regret" for clergy to resign over an issue yet to be resolved by the church.

Mr Morton, who has been a vicar for 33 years, says many of his colleagues privately agree with his stance, and that homophobia is endemic in some respects.

"First of all I felt that the church's position on same sex relationships, never mind same sex marriages, was increasingly judgemental and not really inclusive in the way that I felt that it should be," he told BBC Wales.

"I feel a greater degree of homophobia in the church than I've felt for a long time. Maybe it's just my personal perception but it certainly seems to be more prevalent in some quarters of the church.

"I felt that in order to offer an authentic critique of the church as an institution, the most honourable thing was to do it from the outside rather than from the inside which was what prompted the resignation."

He said that he came across people who in the "guise of what they feel to be religious conviction, came up with some extraordinarily homophobic statements".

However, he said it was not true of the majority of the church, which was "very forgiving and very loving".
I sort of wish Mr Morton had stayed in his position in the church, because strong voices from within the church carry great weight.  In a sense, when one departs, one leaves the field to the homophobic and judgmental.  However, the vicar is obviously a man of conscience and principle, and he did what he thought was best.
"We are trying to  in a way that takes everyone along with us and that calls for time and patience."
The Church in Wales' expression of regret rings hollow as it speaks of its attempts to "move forward gently", even as the church continues to throw its LGTB members under the bus.  LGTB Anglicans have been patient for quite a long time.  How long will the homophobic elements in the church continue to prevail?  How long before same-sex marriage is resolved by the church on the side of justice and equality?  Doomsday will come before the church carries everyone along. 

The video of the interview is here.