There continue to be developments in the campaign against the House of Bishops’ guidance on transgender services which we first reported here, and then here. Reports of the criticism are first of all here, and subsequently here.
More recently, this petition has appeared: A Response to the House of Bishops Guidance on Transgender Welcome.
This was reported in the Church Times: Letter urges House of Bishops to ‘revise, postpone or withdraw’ its trans guidance
…The open letter, which has been signed online by members of the clergy and laity, is being circulated by critics of the guidance, including the conservative Evangelical organisation the Church Society (full text below). It is understood that the letter was intended to be made public in the week before the General Synod’s sessions next month.
Everyone should be welcomed in churches, the letter says, but “we do not believe that the Guidance is the right way to do this, since it raises some significant issues for the Church’s belief and practice.”
It continues: “The House of Bishops previously stated that no new liturgy would be offered. The title of ‘gender transition services’, the focus on the use of a person’s new name, the use of oil and water contrary to previous rubrics in Common Worship, and the description in the later explanatory note confirming that this service is to be used to ‘mark gender transition’ amount to the offering of a new liturgy, since existing wording is now being put to a new purpose…”
And has also been reported in the Sunday Times [£] Church of England faces backlash over services for trans people
This statement was issued by Church of England (as reported in the Sunday Times):
“The bishops will give the letter their serious consideration, especially in the context of the preparation of a major new set of teaching and learning resources on identity, relationships, marriage and sexuality, ‘Living in Love and Faith’, which will be published next year.
“Transgender matters will be covered in those resources and the pastoral guidance does not pre-empt the work of the ‘Living in Love and Faith’ process. The guidance is not a restatement or a new statement on matters relating to gender, nor does it change the Church of England’s teaching.”
Two of those involved in organising this petition have written about it:
GAFCONUK has now chimed in: “Transgender Baptism” – How Should We Respond?