The Church of England is gradually adapting to the reality of gay marriage – and one more bishop has publicly apologised for the hurt it has caused (in particular, for the hurt caused by the bishops’ January statement on same – sex marriage.
Bishop of Gloucester speaks out on Church of England’s attitude to homosexual people
THE Bishop of Gloucester, the Right Revd Michael Perham, addressed the Church of England’s attitude towards homosexuality at Thursday night’s Gloucester Diocesan Synod.
He apologised for the hurt caused by the ‘harsh’ House of Bishops’ statement on same-sex marriage.
Here is his full address.
“We are where we are. Same-sex marriage is here, here to stay.
“It will fast become part of the fabric of our society.
“The weekend of the first such marriages I wanted to rejoice with those who were rejoicing, recognising what a wonderful moment it was for them, and to weep with those who wept, recognising how for them a deeply held belief about marriage was being undermined.
“The House of Bishops’ January statement, when the first same-sex marriages were taking place did recognise that there needed to be room for conscience, that some gay or lesbian Christians would enter such a marriage and that the Church would continue to honour and accept them as members of the body of Christ.
“What it also said was that it could not extend that freedom to its authorised ministers or allow those who had contracted such a marriage to become one of its authorised ministers.
“There were those who, taking a more conservative position, felt that the statement went too far in its accommodation to same-sex marriage.
“But there were rather more who felt the statement struck an unnecessarily harsh and negative tone.
“The House of Bishops, producing a statement under some pressure, underestimated how uncompromising and hurtful the statement felt to some.
“The tone was harsh – there was not much sense of welcome to all as children of God.
“I am sorry for that and for the hurt I know it has engendered.
– more at Gloucestershire Echo.