Calls for continued listening as Anglican Primates meet in Canterbury
OneBodyOneFaith has added its voice to calls for the Anglican Primates to continue to listen to LGBT people as they meet in Canterbury this week. Recognising the diversity of views held on sexuality, as on a wide range of issues, across the Communion, we nevertheless call on the Primates to continue to condemn acts of violence against our brothers and sisters, as we hold to the truth revealed in our context and lived out in our lives - "that it is entirely compatible with the Christian faith not only to love another person of the same sex, but also to express that love fully in a personal sexual relationship."
The Executive of the Human Sexuality Group of General Synod has issued an open letter to the Primates, which you can read here. They outline the progress made over the past year as decades of hard work bear fruit, and ask for the Primates to continue to listen to LGBT people.
The complexity of the task facing Justin Welby cannot be underestimated as he seeks to lead the Communion forward in the context of his own struggles with issues of sexuality and marriage - revealed in an interview with GQ magazine, and reported earlier today by Harriet Sherwood in the Guardian. Harriet also reports on the expected 'consequences' thought likely to be imposed on the Scottish Episcopal Church following their decision earlier this year to marry all couples, regardless of their gender.
In the past, meetings of the Primates have often resulted in pronouncements which LGBTI people have found bruising, insulting and rejecting because they fail to acknowldege that real people's lives, loves and identities lie at the heart of these 'issues'. The Primates collectively fail to recognise the damage they cause to individuals and the damage they do to the church's mission and ministry in the UK context and in many other provinces. The LGBTI Mission has issued a very helpful briefing paper, produced by Savi Hensman, which gives background to the wider context of the Anglican Communion. Well worth reading as we wait to hear what progress will be made at this week's meeting.