Homophobia is still rampant within many parts of the Church of England.
Several parishes in England are edging nearer to a formal split over the issue of homosexuality as they prepare to set up a “shadow synod” to uphold traditional Christian teaching.
The new alliance will be viewed as a “church within a church” but founders have not ruled out full separation.
Anglicans bishops are expected to consider this in the next few months.
The Rev Dr Peter Sanlon, one of the main organisers behind the gathering, told The Telegraph: “If senior leaders of the Church of England water down the teaching of the Church of England on key issues like homosexuality, then this synod could easily evolve into a new Anglican jurisdiction in England.
“The Archbishop of Canterbury has signalled that he is aware of the possibility that a significant proportion of the church will not accept a change in the church’s teaching.
“This could be the beginning of that playing out.”
Recently at the Greenbelt Christian festival in Northamptonshire, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, was asked by a gay audience member about the potential of the Church blessing his civil partnership.
He responded by saying: “I don’t have a good answer to it… If we were the only Church here and there were]no other Churches, and if division didn’t matter it would be much easier to answer.
“Do I know when there will be a point when the blessing [of civil partnerships] will happen? No. I don’t and I can’t see the road ahead.”
Differences over sexuality have already triggered a major rift in the 80 million-strong worldwide Anglican Communion and formal splits in the US and Canada after the ordination of openly gay bishops.
There is absolutely a double standard shown here, and it needs to be called out. It is time that LGBT people had their voices heard in the same way as everyone else within the church. We are human beings who all worship the same God.
We are calling to challenge the legality of the church separating.
OutNews Global has contacted Rev Dr Peter Sanlon for comment.
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