Thinking Anglicans

General Synod – Wednesday – press reports

John Bingham The Telegraph
Welby tells Church refusing gay blessings will be viewed like racism
[The headline on this article was changed after publication to “Justin Welby says ‘Church viewed liked racists over homosexuality’”.]
Girl Guides offers concession to Christians in row over dropping God from pledge

David Pocklington of Law &Religion UK The Church and the Environment

Sam Jones The Guardian Church of England vows to fight ‘great demon’ of climate change

Michael Trimmer Christian Today Climate change is ‘great demon of our day’

29
Leave a Reply

avatar
3000
29 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
20 Comment authors
Father Ron SmithJames ByronCynthiaInterested ObserverJean Mayland Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest
Notify of
James Byron
Guest
James Byron

Do we see calls for diversity over racism, for John Sentamu to make “provision” for believers in the Curse of Ham in the name of “mutual flourishing”? No, we do not. We would, rightly, view that as an abhorrent blow to him and his ministry. Taking a neutral line on sexism and homophobia is a betrayal of women and gay people. Welby can take the high road all he likes, he speaks from a position of privilege, about “issues” that don’t affect him personally. Welby draws a distinction between the church and the world. Where’s the Church of England, Mars?… Read more »

Cynthia
Guest
Cynthia

I recognize that Justin’s comments represent a great distance traveled since Parliament and the famous “wrecking” amendment. But the problem of compromise is that it compromises justice, thus it isn’t justice. When the white, straight, majority tells me I can be blessed but not married, I am being condemned to live in a 2nd class status. We have always learned that unequal means vulnerable. When you look at the moral equation of suffering, who suffers when I and my LGBT brothers and sisters receive full justice? Does anyone get arrested? Beaten? Lose their jobs? Harassed? Who suffers when we don’t… Read more »

Father David
Guest
Father David

Archbishop Justin is now surely experiencing the fact that when the Church departs from Biblical and Christian orthodoxy the whole show starts to unravel. The General Synod instead of addressing and seeking to correct the recent survey which shewed that the Established Church was experiencing massive decline chose rather to continue its gallop towards apostasy. Once apostasy appears on the scene then schism inevitably follows as we are currently experiencing within the world wide Anglican Communion. Just as the Anglican Communion is now in all but name two separate entities -Traditional and liberal – is it not high time that… Read more »

Iain Baxter
Guest
Iain Baxter

Archbishop Welby proposes a Church where “racists” and “non-racists” will live in harmony. Is this good news?

In some ways it is. Currently the “racists” control everything. However, we have already been assured that the Church will not change its “racist” doctrines, only allow a few local arrangements for “non-racist” activities.

To him this is very generous. He is a committed “racist” himself. It is a change, however, and a move forward.

JCF
Guest
JCF

“John Bingham The Telegraph Welby tells Church refusing gay blessings will be viewed like racism
[The headline on this article was changed after publication to “Justin Welby says ‘Church viewed liked racists over homosexuality’”.]”

Headline changed, I’m guessing, after getting approx. 1,429 comments asking, “WILL BE viewed like racism???”

Gary Paul Gilbert
Guest
Gary Paul Gilbert

Welby’s proposed compromise is a disappointment because it fails to treat LGBTs and women as equal members of the Church of England. It sounds like an abusive relationship.

Gary Paul Gilbert

John
Guest
John

We are reaching a stage where the ABC tells his church that there are going to have to be gay blessings in churches that want them. Shortly afterwards, there will be such blessings in churches that want them. At some time not very long after that there will be full gay marriages in churches that want them. Pretty soon, most churches will want both blessings and marriages. These changes are staggering, and they are being promoted by an Evangelical of Welby’s formation (Alpha etc.). At the same time, nobody is being coerced here. Equally, nobody is going to be able… Read more »

Martin Reynolds
Guest
Martin Reynolds

Although this does follow the pattern of recent speeches it does, as John writes above, point to the outcomes he suggests. Behind the scenes, though probably coded up some way on the Church notice board , this fresh doctrinal differences will add new fractures to those presently announcing Mattins or Mass and the new differences will not run along traditional party lines. There will be inclusive Evangelicals and orthodox Anglo Catholics and not always predictably so. You can see Welby struggling with the prospect of what harm this debate might cause. It is not easy to have an honest, open… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest

The Church of England General Synod needs our prayers; that hearts might be moved towards the inclusion of ALL people into the Body of Christ – both into its daily life and ministry.

Savi Hensman
Guest
Savi Hensman

Though I think Archbishop Justin’s address did not recognise the damage done by discrimination, I believe John is right: there is a real opportunity to move forward, after many years. There is also a practical challenge: how do we respond to those churchgoers in their 70s and 80s who grew up in the days when gay sex was unlawful and homosexuality viewed as psychologically damaging and sinful, and are now friendly with LGBT people but not yet ready to affirm same-sex relationships? Or younger clergy who try to be respectful and caring to LGBT parishioners and friends but were trained… Read more »

FD Blanchard
Guest
FD Blanchard

“…how do we respond to those churchgoers in their 70s and 80s who grew up in the days when gay sex was unlawful and homosexuality viewed as psychologically damaging and sinful, and are now friendly with LGBT people but not yet ready to affirm same-sex relationships?” …the same way we treated people 50 years ago who believed with all their hearts and minds that people of color were unclean and cursed by God; with charity but firmly telling them that they will have to share a single world with others created by God in His image whose claim upon it… Read more »

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“how do we respond to those churchgoers in their 70s and 80s who grew up in the days when gay sex was unlawful and homosexuality viewed as psychologically damaging and sinful” But those same 70 and 80 year olds grew up in an era when it was perfectly acceptable to refer to people who aren’t white by a variety of racial epithets which would be entirely unacceptable today. They probably don’t do that now, certainly not in church, partly because attitudes have got better, but partly because even if they are racist in their head they have the good manners… Read more »

John
Guest
John

Thank you, Savi.

Savi Hensman
Guest
Savi Hensman

FD Blanchard, a lot of awareness-raising activity went on in the C of E a few decades ago to change attitudes on racial equality – even when the law was in place, discrimination was extremely widespread, and it still happens. This was not a matter of stating that black and minority ethnic Anglicans were unclean and cursed by God – and anyone who speaks in these terms of LGBT people definitely needs to be checked, whatever their age – but took more subtle forms and was sometimes not intentional though nevertheless undermining. Of course people can and do change, whatever… Read more »

jnwall
Guest
jnwall

I’m interested in the creation of a special category of folks in this conversation — people over 70, who, it is claimed, may have trouble accepting gay people as people. I object. I’m 68, and I know lots of people in their 70’s and 80’s who are fully supportive of equal rights for gay people, and have been, for years. After all, these are the folks who grew up with, and participated in, the Civil Rights Movement, the Women’s Movement, the Abortion Rights Movement, and the Anti-War Movement. When the Gay Rights Movement came along, it seemed a natural development… Read more »

Gary Paul Gilbert
Guest
Gary Paul Gilbert

Some older people are senior citizens who have been denied the right to marry by the religious institutions whose discourses manufacture homophobia. I love reading stories about same-sex couples marrying after having been together for decades.

Older LGBTs deserve more care, given what they have suffered from both secular and religious institutional practices.

It may also be harder after experiencing decades of discrimination to trust institutions who claim to have the truth.

Gary Paul Gilbert

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“This was not a matter of stating that black and minority ethnic Anglicans were unclean and cursed by God – and anyone who speaks in these terms of LGBT people definitely needs to be checked, whatever their age” But the problem is that they often aren’t checked. The idea that because of their age, or ethnicity, or background they should be granted a pass dies very hard. For example, the argument that vile homophobia is acceptable from African churches because of their historic cultural perspectives (or whatever) dies awfully hard, and the ABC has been shamefully reluctant to criticise. It… Read more »

Savi Hensman
Guest
Savi Hensman

While I gave the example of older laypeople and younger clergy who might not affirm marriage of same-sex couples, there are of course many in both categories who do. However younger people are proportionally more likely to be in favour – according to the results of an April 2013 YouGov poll for the Westminster Faith debate, for instance, in Britain just 17% of 18-24yr olds were against allowing same-sex marriage, compared with 53% of those aged 60 and over. (http://networkedblogs.com/KtnK8).

Rosemary Hannah
Guest
Rosemary Hannah

I think Savi is right – and while it is unpalatable to have to swallow being part of an organisation where some people believe it is perfectly OK to discriminate against gay people, the fact is that those people are also being asked to accept that those who up to now they have considered apostate are also honoured members of the organisation. In time it will all shake down. In time, it will become clear that marriage is about love and not gender roles.

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

I can understand that some people struggle to accept homosexuality. And I can understand that many of those people are from the older generation. The question is what we do about that. And at the moment we seem to be saying that the church should tread gently and not be expected to grant gay people full equality because of those who struggle. That’s not acceptable. By all means, provide these people with pastoral support, but at the same time make very very clear that gay people are equal at every level of church life. There will be enough lobbying against… Read more »

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“in Britain just 17% of 18-24yr olds were against allowing same-sex marriage, compared with 53% of those aged 60 and over.” So the CofE should respond by continuing to be sympathetic to a narrow majority of the over-60s, of whom every year a significant proportion die, even at the expense of continuing to tolerate or in some cases advance (as Welby and all the other bishops did in the House of Lords did last year) a policy which is seen as reactionary by an overwhelming majority of younger people? A significant proportion of those 17% will be Muslim, so the… Read more »

The Rev'd Mervyn Noote
Guest

I think Welby is trying to lead. With a few exceptions, however, Evangelical bishops are not willing to follow. They are increasingly dominant, both numerically and ideologically, in both the House and College. Hence the one bone of comfort from Pilling, tolerated blessings in parishes that want them, was ditched after last month’s College of Bishops meeting. There is, of course, a dramatic change of attitudes underway among C of E Evangelicals but it is mostly among the young and has barely touched the bishops. The C of E retains a seriously hierarchical culture. It doesn’t help that those who… Read more »

Will Douglas Barton
Guest
Will Douglas Barton

I think it is a very unpleasant suggestion that muslims are disproportionately homophobic. That is not the case with those I know, work with and teach.Young muslims are, in my experience, as likely as any of their contemporaries to regard homophobic attitudes as creepy and bizarre.

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

I don’t think there was necessarily a suggestion of disproportionality. Rather that of the total 18-24 population, a significant number are muslims. And of course of other non-Anglican religious bodies.

Jean Mayland
Guest
Jean Mayland

I am 77 and my husband is 86 and we are both totally opposed to any discrimination against. gay and lesbian people.

We have both changed many of our ideas during our lives and are open to more.

Interested Observer
Guest
Interested Observer

“I don’t think there was necessarily a suggestion of disproportionality”

It was infelicitously worded, but I did not intend to imply that they were homophobic at any rate higher than the population at large. Just that Muslims are disproportionately young, and therefore form a larger part of any younger segment than an older segment.

Cynthia
Guest
Cynthia

“That’s not acceptable. By all means, provide these people with pastoral support, but at the same time make very very clear that gay people are equal at every level of church life. There will be enough lobbying against us. We don’t need to join them and accept an actual, life affecting inferior status just to make it a little easier on those who have purely theoretical “problems” with gay equality.” I agree with Erika. I am sorry, straight people, but it is not OK to ask us to live awhile longer with injustice and suffering to make mostly comfortable people… Read more »

James Byron
Guest
James Byron

“The C of E retains a seriously hierarchical culture.” Couldn’t agree more, Mervyn Noote. This is tied, in large part, to the secretive way in which bishops are appointed in England. They should have to stand for election, as they do in Scotland and America. “Nobody at leadership level, including the Liberals, is prepared to confront the unpleasant reality that it may not be possible to keep the Anglican Communion entirely intact while allowing the Gospel to be presented credibly in England.” Agreed, but is it that unpleasant? What, beyond numbers, does the Church of England gain from being in… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
Guest

“What, beyond numbers, does the Church of England gain from being in communion with the GAFCON band?” – James Byron – What indeed? Especially as recent GAFCON statements have declared their inability to ‘live with’ even the low-key ‘acceptance’ of LGBT people by the hierarchy of the Church of England. It seems to many of us, in other Provinces of the anglican Communion, that our ‘Mother Church’ might have a real duty of care to those of us who believe that LGBT people have a respected place within the Kingdom of God and the Family of the Church. The moral… Read more »