Archbishop supports Gays and the Future of Anglicanism
The Archbishop of Wales has welcomed a 'cogent' new book by 22 leading theologians that argues for gay people's inclusion within the Anglican ministry.
Written by ësome of the finest theological minds', Gays and the Future of Anglicanismchallenges the moratorium on gay consecrations and same-sex blessings of the Anglican Communion. ëThis book throws down a formidable challenge to the Anglican Communion. It cannot afford to ignore it' he commented.
The Archbishop, Dr Barry Morgan, who was himself one of the people responsible for the Windsor Report, which recommended the moratorium, made it clear that the issue is far from settled: ëThe arguments advanced for including gay people [in the church] deserve to be read and pondered by all who are involved in the debate about human sexuality.'
The book says the Archbishop, ëshows up the superficiality of previous Anglican discussion of this subject' and should ëgive the Anglican Church in many places cause for penitence for the way it has treated and thought about gay people.'
Gays and the Future of Anglicanism, edited by Oxford theologian Andrew Linzey and Richard Kirker, Director of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement will be published by O books at the end of September.
Among the 22 contributors are Archbishop Rowan Williams' successor at Oxford, Dr George Pattison, the Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity.
Responding to the Archbishop's statement, Professor Linzey said, ëThis is a welcome sign of a rethink. We were always told that Windsor was a process not a judgment - it is excellent to have confirmation of that'. Some fear that the Windsor Report will lead to the exclusion of all gays from the Church. ëPreposterous as it sounds, some people want to make attitude to gays the criterion of being an Anglican', added Professor Linzey. ëThe book is really a devastating critique of current church policy'.
The book contains 22 chapters by major theologians from the UK and the US. Eight of the contributors are theologians from Oxford: Marilyn McCord Adams, Philip Kennedy, Christopher Lewis, George Pattison, Martyn Percy, Vincent Strudwick, Keith Ward and Andrew Linzey. Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford, Marilyn McCord Adams calls upon the Anglican Communion to apologize for its ërude reception of gay clergy', and Dr Philip Kennedy, Senior Tutor of Mansfield College, Oxford, maintains that ëNeither God nor Jesus can be convicted of gay bashing. The same could hardly be said for many of their devotees'. The book marks the first major engagement by Anglican theologians with the gay issue since the publication of Windsor last year.