Thinking Anglicans

more on Welsh elections

Updated Thursday evening

First, apologies for the break in service yesterday and today.

Now, further reports on the Bangor election.

Stephen Bates weighed in at Comment is free with a very detailed background report on earlier events, titled Diocesan machinations.

However, more recent reports show official spokespersons are suggesting that earlier reports may have been overstating the case:

Christian Today Jennifer Gold Church plays down speculation of gay cleric as next Bishop of Bangor

Wales Today Darren Devine Gay cleric’s bid to be bishop in Wales

…a spokeswoman for the Church in Wales yesterday refused to comment on whether Dr John was in the running, saying nominations are not made until an electoral college of the church convenes to make the appointment. And she suggested the appointment was unlikely as the Church in Wales is subject to a moratorium – agreed at a recent conference in Lambeth – on the appointment of gay bishops that covers Anglican churches worldwide…

The spokeswoman for the Church in Wales said the bench of bishops here wanted to uphold the Lambeth moratorium and the electoral college would be mindful of their advice.

But the six bishops on the bench do not make up a majority on the college and other members are not bound by their views.

“The bishops of the Church in Wales are mindful that the recent Lambeth conference called for a moratorium on the ordination of bishops in single-sex partnerships and they take that conference very seriously,” said the spokesperson. But she acknowledged that as a popular cleric fluent in Welsh, Dr John was “absolutely” qualified for the post.

St Albans Observer Alexandra Barham Will dean become a bishop?

CLAIMS that St Albans Dean Jeffrey John could be on the verge of moving to Wales to take on the role of Bishop of Bangor have been condemned as speculation.

Reports in national newspapers that the clergyman, who celebrated a civil partnership ceremony with another priest two years ago, has been nominated for the Bangor post in North Wales were denied by St Albans Abbey spokeswoman spokesman Arun Kataria…

Daily Post Eryl Crump Gay clergyman may be in line as Bishop of Bangor

Dave Walker has some useful links to Church Times reports of earlier events in Jeffrey John and the Bangor post.

Ruth Gledhill republished her interview with Jeffrey John, first published in Thursday 19 June 2003, see Is Wales ready for a gay bishop?

Damian Thompson at the Telegraph had If Dean Jeffrey John becomes a bishop, the floodgates will open.

Thursday evening update

Ruth Gledhill reports in The Times that there is a Resignation threat over gay bishop appointment.

This was first reported in the Western Mail this morning.

The Herts Advertiser also had a report Dean Of St Albans Tipped As New Bishop Of Bangor.

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Father Ron Smith
13 years ago

“John’s sin, of course, was honesty; he was discreet about his homosexuality and had certainly not flaunted it, but had argued, quietly and academically, for a more Christian understanding of gays. Evangelicals who sought assisuously for evidence of promiscuity and sinfulnesscould not find it, even though they trawled the electoral register to see if he was living with his partner.” – Stephen Bates Stephen Bates, in his article on this thread, has put his finger on the heart of the dilemma; the honesty of Jeffrey John has worked against him – in the case of his aborted election to Reading,… Read more »

David Walker
David Walker
13 years ago

I thought the Lambeth moratorium applied to bishops in sexually active homosexual relationships, and that this had not been Dr John’s situation for some years.

There is no moratorium on bishops who think gay relationships are godly and none on bishops who have celibate friendships with persons of the same sex.

Pat O'Neill
Pat O'Neill
13 years ago

David Walker:

It is my experience that those who oppose gay inclusion make no such distinctions.

JCF
JCF
13 years ago

I find the whole notion that there should be inquiries of a loving, faithful, committed couple as to HOW they live their faithful, committed love, absolutely *disgraceful*.

Lord have mercy!

Jim Pratt
Jim Pratt
13 years ago

Although I am very orthodox and theologically conservative in many ways (and one of my seminary professors tried to throw up obstacles to my ordination because of it), the prior treatment of Jeffrey John pushed me firmly into the “liberal” camp on the sexuality issue. In the vehemence of their opposition, the so-called orthodox showed that it wasn’t about behavior, it wasn’t about an allegedly sinful lifestyle, but all about orientation and homophobia. Bishop Anderson is showing once again that the true face of this movement is not concern for scripture and godly living, but hatred. And for the time… Read more »

Richard Ashby
Richard Ashby
13 years ago

Horray, Bring it on.

Treebeard
Treebeard
13 years ago

Many thanks for your contribution Jim Pratt.

Heart-warming.

Christopher Shell
Christopher Shell
13 years ago

Hi Father Ron Smith- You must know that what you write can’t possibly be true. Supposing we hold, with Christianity and the other large-scale international cultures, that homosexual practice is not something good and/or causes more harm than good. We will therefore resist the promotion to leadership of anyone in that category, whether or not they are open about it. In the case of those who are not open about it, it is in the nature of things that people may be unaware of the true situation. Who can do anything about that? To summarise: the situation does not work… Read more »

choirboyfromhell
choirboyfromhell
13 years ago

Shell: “Supposing we hold, with Christianity and the other large-scale international cultures, that homosexual practice is not something good and/or causes more harm than good.”

But we increasingly don’t hold those views, and that’s the reality of the situation, in a true honest, open and healthy environment.

Ford Elms
Ford Elms
13 years ago

“the situation does not work against the honest and open, whom the orthodox would never have promoted higher in any case; it does, however, work unjustly in favour of the less open.” Ah, but you have to ask why they are less open and what that lack of openness does to them. An American comedy show recently made the observation that, in the US, if you want to find a sex scandal among Liberal politicians, you have to go back to Clinton. Before that, probably John F Kennedy. However, in just the last two years, there have been five (5)… Read more »

Fr Mark
Fr Mark
13 years ago

Christopher: but the reality of your position is, that gay clergy will in consequence just go into “lavender” marriages if necessary. I know several in that situation, and I think that is miserable for them and the poor woman involved. You cannot actually stop gay people from being in the Church and holding high office: they have ALWAYS done this, for as long as there has been a Church. We are among the society’s great survivors, and if you persecute us, we learn how to play the system and go underground. But that leads to deceit, blackmail, suicides and all… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
13 years ago

Christopher, I suppose what I am trying to say is that there have always been gays in the Church. However, hitherto they have had to resort to the necessity of being deceitful (hypocritical) – when faced with hostile questioning about their personal sexual orientation. As Fr. Mark has said; the situation now is rather better – at least from the point of view of society’s emerging acceptance of ‘gayness’ as a normal variant of human sexuality. Some parts of the Church, unfortunately, still hold to the pre-enlightenment view of sexuality and gender which is holding up the emancipation of women… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
13 years ago

There are some interesting comments about this on the Church Times blog, go to
http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/blog_post.asp?id=62768

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