Sunday, 24 July 2005

civil partnerships and the CofE

The Church of England bishops are about to issue their promised pastoral statement on civil partnerships. This is expected to occur tomorrow. Two excellent briefing items have appeared.

The BBC Sunday programme had this item:

Gay Anglicans
Tomorrow the Church of England will reveal how it will deal with clergy who are in same sex relationships and who want to register their partnerships.
Report by Christopher Landau.
Listen (4m 35s) (Real Audio)

Fulcrum has published a Fulcrum response to the Civil Partnerships Act by Andrew Goddard. This is a comprehensive analysis of the UK civil partnership legislation and its implications for the Church of England, and also indicates the potential for a positive way forward.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Sunday, 24 July 2005 at 12:47pm BST
You can make a Permalink to this if you like
Categorised as: Church of England

Although I suspect Goddard and I might come to somewhat different theological conclusions about "the third way", he does ask the right questions and seems to be working from correct premises about the ontology of homosexuality. It's too bad that I don't hear this kind of talk on the other side of the Atlantic, even though the situations in Vermont, Massachusetts, and soon Connecticut are similar.

Posted by: Caelius Spinator on Sunday, 24 July 2005 at 5:14pm BST

Ahh, good old "fuzzy liberal" policies from the HoB, if leaks to the BBC are to be believed. But I wonder how long before we end up with the ECUSA scenario - the orthodox progressively "sliced up": women priests/women bishops/priests in gay partnerships/blessing of gay partnerships/bishops in gay partnerships... etc

If orthodox christians don't stand up now to the HoB's disproportionate (self-appointed) liberal elite, the CofE can easily slide into the same pit as ECUSA: faithful christians pushed out... (and no-one else joining!)

Posted by: Dave on Sunday, 24 July 2005 at 8:16pm BST

Andrew Goddard's piece indicates a "way forward"? (I sure didn't it. Only more of the same 'ol, same 'ol: prejudice masquerading as "historic faith").

Typical bit:

"The problem here is that it requires of the church what it currently lacks [:] a positive account of godly same-sex relationships."


There are none so blind as those who will not see.

Posted by: J. C. Fisher on Sunday, 24 July 2005 at 11:29pm BST

Good on the Blair government for having the courage. Perhaps one question I feel gets begged in this discussion (Goddard simply mentions it) is why exactly "marriage" needs protection? So-called faithful christians might consider the paradox that they pose when they confront issues of sex: that it's either in an 'approved' context, or it doesn't happen (i.e.: celibacy/abstinence). Clearly there is a lot of fuzzy emoting going on when gay people are effectively told that furtive promiscuity is the only real option, with the implication that any relationships they might form mean nothing. Perhaps it's 'orthodox' christians who need the cold shower here, followed by a reality check of how unsupported long-term relationships work, or don't work, under the pretence of 'protecting' marriage.

Posted by: k1eranc on Monday, 25 July 2005 at 2:30am BST

Good point, k1eranc. A cleryman once said to me that in all of his considerable years of counseling people in unhappy marriages, never once was the problem identified as "the lesbian couple down the street." :)

Posted by: David Huff on Monday, 25 July 2005 at 4:02pm BST

The problem isn't the Lesbian couple down the street. Instead, the approval of the Lesbian couple down the street is a symptom of the problem. The problem is the complete collapse of any sexual standard of conduct beyond consent. The open affirmation of homosexuality ... at least for other peoples' children anyway ... is an indication of how deeply entrenched the attitudes have become. Whether this problem can be overcome is problematic.

One can argue about whether homosexuality (as opposed to cohabitation for example) is the proper place to try and re-assert traditional norms. So perhaps this is not the best choice. Still, the journey back has to start somewhere, and the garment in question is a seamless garment. To re-assert one is to re-assert all.

Will it succeed? I do not think so. Open approval of homosexuality is a sign of current judgment - not a warning of future judgment. But then again, all things are possible with God.


Posted by: ECJ on Tuesday, 26 July 2005 at 6:37am BST

ECJ, Sorry, but your argument doesn't follow. Too many fallacious assumptions, incl. elements of Slippery Slope, Complex Question, Prejudicial Language and Argumentum ad Consequentiam.

See for details.

Posted by: Simeon on Tuesday, 26 July 2005 at 4:10pm BST

But, Dave, the 'orthodox' won't be sliced up - they will have followed Akinola and his band of premoderns out of the CofE. So it won't be an issue for them. Sooner the better, I'd say!

Posted by: Merseymike on Thursday, 28 July 2005 at 11:15pm BST

Simeon: your dismissive list is not an argument but a mere parade of terms. You don't engage with anything that ECJ says, nor catalog each of the asserted errors. Where, for example, is the 'prejudicial language'?

Posted by: Martin Hambrook on Saturday, 30 July 2005 at 5:24pm BST
Post a comment

Remember personal info?

Please note that comments are limited to 400 words. Comments that are longer than 400 words will not be approved.

Cookies are used to remember your personal information between visits to the site. This information is stored on your computer and used to refill the text boxes on your next visit. Any cookie is deleted if you select 'No'. By ticking 'Yes' you agree to this use of a cookie by this site. No third-party cookies are used, and cookies are not used for analytical, advertising, or other purposes.