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The language is a bit raw for some, but Martin has the right idea. Using religion to camouflage prejudice isn't a very good idea.

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The news has gone all the way around the planet. Tom Daley, the British Olympic bronze medal winner in diving, is dating a guy.



All sorts of comments have been made about this, but I'd like to say something. He never said he was gay. He said that he also likes girls, but that the man he's dating just clicked with him.

I've also seen many comments to the effect of, "Well, who didn't know it?" I would reply, "Nearly everyone." A young man of 19 is still trying to figure out who he is, what he'll be, and who he loves, and I think this is true even for very strongly heterosexual men. Since he was training for the 2008 Olympics, Tom has been in the spotlight, and even more so since his bronze medal win in 2012. He has gone from a boy of 12 to a strong young man of 19 who has two or even 3 Olympics ahead of him. So what he'll be is already set out. But who he is, is still to be determined.

I suspect that some slezoid tabloid newspaper got wind of this and was planning to come out with an exposé. Daley shortcircuited all this with his own touching, emotional, video. It's only been out since midmorning and it has already gained nearly 500K views. The BBC interviewed various out gay celebrities (if Lord Browne can be called that) and the Evening Standard has a story on page 5.

This may not be such big news elsewhere, although there is a Tom-Daley-cult in China which I'm sure is furiously commenting even as we speak. Here it's big news, and at this time, so it should be.

In 5 years or so, no one will give a toss as to who a sports star, a celebrity, or a politician dates, marries, or sleeps with. And this announcement, ladies and gentlemen, is the beginning of the end of such announcements. They will no longer be needed.

As for Tom himself, he is massively self-confident (divers have to be, I think), courageous (stand ten metres up from the edge of a pool and dive in: that takes courage), as well as thick-skinned. He will come out of this well. I hope that his boyfriend does, too. This must be even more difficult for him. So, best of luck to him in his profession and in his personal life.
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You can't be gay unless you have a job…watch the video to see why.

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When I was this man's age, I would not have dreamed of coming out; I was so far in the closet that I didn't know I was in it. He's come out to his family, his friends, and his rugby team in Wales. Keep a tissue handy. Tom is my Brick of the Day and I wish him every success.

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This morning's Grauniad presented me with an article detailing the Church of England's official response to the Government's proposal to allow same-sex marriage in England and Wales. It made for pretty sour reading.

In short, the Church says that the connection between religious marriage and civil marriage will be broken by allowing same-sex marriages (as most religions will not perform them). It states that it believes that court action in the European Court of Human Rights will force the churches to witness same-sex marriages on church premises. It does not believe that the Government can change unilaterally the definition of "marriage" as being between one man and one woman, since that definition has persisted through time. It frets that, since a heterosexual marriage is not actually effected until the partners consummate it through intercourse, a same-sex one will not have the same definition as a heterosexual one and thus the heterosexual one will be made less of a marriage by legalising same-sex marriages.

And, finally, it unleashes the "D" word: disestablishment. It fears that allowing same-sex marriage, even if only civilly, will require the Church to be disestablished, with the attendant mess, bother, and upset that would cause.

All this is in aid of trying to get the Government to abandon the proposal for same-sex marriage and leave lesbian and gay couples in England and Wales with the second-class civil partnership.

Unfortunately, they are coming up with egg on their mitres over this. Pressure for disestablishment of the Church of England has grown over the last, say, 20 years. People from all walks of life, including many committed churchgoers, believe that establishment of the Church has stifled diversity in the hierarchy, attached the Church to the State with an umbilical cord of velvet, and ensured that the Government of the day has a veto over the selection of its bishops and cathedral deans and clergy. None of this is good. And if the Church is saying that the civil government of the country is forcing it to consider asking for disestablishment, then most people will say, Good! Bring it on! Go for it!

Many C of E clergy defend establishment because (in their view) it means that the Church of England is here to serve the entire nation in times of greatest need, such as with baptisms, marriages, and funerals (all of which the incumbent of the territorial parish of the parents, bride and groom, and the deceased are required by civil law to provide). I have always countered with this: what would prevent the Church from requiring its clergy to provide these occasional offices to anyone who approaches them if the Church were disestablished? Nothing, is the answer to that one. The Church gets no money from the Government, so being disestablished would not decrease its income (all things being equal). The Queen could still be the Supreme Governor of the Church of England—she is a patron of many charities, Colonel-in-Chief of regiments in the Armed Forces, and many other things that have nothing to do with her legal position as Monarch and Head of State. Bishops could then be elected by Diocesan Synods and confirmed by General Synod in the same way that bishops in the Episcopal Church are elected by Diocesan Convention and confirmed by the House of Bishops and the Standing Committee of the several dioceses.

The Church would be free to criticise the Government of the day without compromising its 26 bishops in the House of Lords, as they wouldn't be there as of right of office. And House of Lords reform would be made easier, as there would be no requirement to consider the positions of the bishops who now sit in it.

What is most comforting is that my friend, Dr. Louie Crew, the founder of Integrity/USA, started all this decades ago when he placed an ad in the national Episcopal Church newspaper looking for other lesbians and gay men of faith to gather together for comfort and support. Before Louie, the subject was not on the docket, no one was interested, and clergy discouraged gay men and lesbians from joining and taking an active part in the church. Afterwards, the closet was no longer as attractive a place to be. Gay and lesbian rights for full inclusion in the church began there. Look where we are now.

Canon Dr. Giles Fraser, the Priest-in-Charge of my neighbouring parish, wrote a response on the Grauniad's website which blisteringly attacked the Church and the bishops. He's a straight man on the side of the angels, and I'm proud that he's in the deanery of which I am the Lay Chair.

How will this all end? I suspect that the bishops have shot their wad on this one. There has been so much opprobrium heaped on their heads in the last half a day, so much scorn, contempt, and derision laid at their door that their intervention has done their cause (keeping the status quo) irreparable harm. They have shown us the bogeyman at the church door, and everyone is now laughing. The bogeyman is blinking and wondering what all the laughing is about.
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I shall take out the location to protect the innocent…this person is interested in Chinese men.

In … area…you must host cheap motel downtown
i am a 55 Year/old Black/top/poet/lover of men old school homosexual
bring enema kit dildo condoms
must be clean no diseases
bring boneless spare ribs bean curd chow mein pork egg drop soup

You must be masculine submissive dad bottom into feet armpits sweat rimming
dont have to be a model must be a real person
be respectful and you will be respected
contact me asap thanks


I think that the menu specification is probably the best part of this.

I'll have one from column A and one from column B.
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I came across this picture while browsing through a Stanford archive of tobacco advertising. Do have a very happy Christmas, all!



Apologies for the slight crookedness of the image.
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Coming of gay age in New York City in the 1970's and 1980's was vibrant. The availability of easy sex on the piers at the end of Christopher Street dissolved into the AIDS crises beginning in the early 1980's. Bars opened, continued, and closed. Apparel and leatherwear shops opened, flourished, and closed. The Christopher Street Bookstore flourished too, along with Ty's, Boots and Saddles, the Stonewall, the Oscar Wilde Bookshop, Manatus, and all the rest.

If you were around Christopher Street in these days, you'll find your heart and mind taken back there by this walk through the gay village. I am now mired in reminiscence, and thank Matt Rettenmund for the heads-up.

I remember the first man I knew with AIDS, who lived a few blocks north of Christopher on Bleecker. He had been a social worker, and we spent lots of time having coffee around the area, talking over politics, men, and AIDS. He died in around 1985 or so.

I remember the many years I attended and assisted at Integrity/New York's eucharists at St. Luke's in the Fields just south of Christopher on Hudson. The first week I attended, in February 1988, I circled the block twice before I got the gumption to go in. The President, Nick Dowen, was so welcoming that, although I had to run out as their speaker was someone from the leftwing political group I had belonged to, I returned the next week and became an Episcopalian in October.

I remember each Pride March I attended, every year, and the exhilaration of walking down Fifth Avenue and then turning on to Christopher Street and ending up at the Pride festival. What a privilege and a pleasure that was!

No other place I've lived except for London has as many associations for me as a gay man. I'm proud to have been a small part of it, and while I realise that time marches on and the gay village has moved to Chelsea, I would love to go back and have a lovely lunch at Manatus followed by a civilised drink in Two Potato, with all those whom I loved but see no longer.
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Note: This post originally appeared in the Integrity Lightspeed email list a month ago or so. In addition, I'm not a lawyer.

One of the facts that turned the tide on interracial marriage back in the 1950's and 60's is the fluidity of the population of the United States. People get married in one state, go to live (and pay taxes) in another state, go to a third state and then adopt children, and finally in a fourth state, either divorce or one of the couple is widowed and has to pay inheritance taxes and do probate.

The backbone of the social fabric of the United States is the section of the Constitution that requires each state to give full faith and credit to actions of other states. Without that, a married couple (same-sex) in Massachusetts crosses the state line to New York and (for another month) is considered two single people living together. Their financial situation changes (they can no longer pay state taxes as a couple, for example) and their personal situation could change (adopted children might become un-adopted if the couple moved to Florida, for example).

If we change "same-sex married couple" to "first-cousin married couple" this would be an extremely common situation, as some states allow first cousins to marry, others do not. However, if first cousins are married in a state that permits it, and then they move to a state that does not permit it, they do not immediately become single people--their marriage is recognised.

When only relatively small states permitted same-sex marriage, the social consequences of moving from one of those states to another state were small. Now that a big state has legalised same-sex marriage, and in one stroke of Gov. Cuomo's pen doubled the number of people living in states which permit it, the stakes are getting higher. If California's Proposition 8 is invalidated, the stakes will be almost overwhelming.

If a same-sex married couple from Massachusetts moves to Texas and wishes to divorce, the obvious place for that divorce to happen is the civil courts of the State of Texas. If they were a mixed-sex couple, that is what would happen. For Texas to then arbitrarily say that marriages contracted in Massachusetts are of two different types, mixed-sex (which they recognise) and same-sex (which they do not recognise) is a legal nicety and certainly the proper subject of litigation.

Eventually (perhaps not the first time, or the tenth time, but eventually) the Federal courts will rule that Massachusetts (for the sake of example) has only one kind of marriage and other states will be required by the Constitution to recognise it.

And the simple reason is: simplicity. For states to keep two types of marriage around in order to uphold "traditional marriage" makes all sorts of social and legal interactions much more complicated. It clogs the courts (which courts dislike) and requires lots of legal picking of nits to support.

This is also the legal and social reason why civil partnerships (in the US sense of that phrase) are inferior. Texas could argue that civil partnerships (which Texas does not allow) do not have to be given the same legal status as marriages. I do not ignore the reason of natural justice and equal rights in saying that civil partnerships are inferior, but legally a civil partnership gives another state a good reason to not recognise it.

The historic argument that same-sex marriage somehow breaks or devalues mixed-sex marriage is being debased every time a same-sex couple marries in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Iowa, or (soon) New York. Mixed-sex marriage has not been devalued at all. The fact that mixed-sex couples in those states are still getting married, and see value in getting married, gives the lie to that argument. The fear of the Roman Catholic Church is that the more places where same-sex marriage is legal, and the more places in which it is seen as normal, the more pressure there will be for same-sex marriage everywhere. And once some states see that civilisation has not collapsed in those places, they will feel emboldened to follow the example of those places.

The sexual assault scandals in the Roman Catholic Church have also not helped. After discovering that bishops conspired to move around offenders rather than discipline them or protect minors from them, people wonder why on earth something as simple, edifying, and gracious as to allow same-sex loving couples to enjoy the same rights as their mixed sex brothers and sisters do is so reviled by the same clerics who allowed the rights and lives of young children to be ruined in the name of the reputation of the Church.

My prediction is that as more states allow same-sex marriage, the build-up of case law over social effects of marriage (divorce, adoption, taxation) will come to a height that the Supreme Court will be unable to ignore. To allow states to discriminate between marriages on the basis of who is married to whom is not going to be a good idea. The conservative justices will try to deny these cases on the basis of history, culture, religion, everything but the Constitution. My strategy (were I King of the World...) would be to get Obama re-elected, then after he appoints a few more justices, only then bring the test case. If the case comes to the Supreme Court too early, it runs the risk of being overturned on the first run, and then supported only 10 or 20 years later, like the sodomy law cases were.

On civil partnerships, by the way, they have been legal here in the UK from 2006. After five years, it is generally recognised in society that members of civil partnerships are married, rather than "civilly partnered". People refer to HWMBO and me as married, do not do a double-take when I refer to him as my husband, and are generally happy to treat us in the same way they treat a mixed-sex couple. So, after only a few years, civil partnerships have been turned into marriage by society in general. The law is following after society in this case. I expect that the next "liberal" government will turn all civil partnerships into marriages and remove the distinction in law.
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Brandon is a soccer player at Adelphi University. He's gay. He wrote his coming-out story for Outsports; I didn't finish reading it with dry eyes and I hope you won't either.
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I just finished watching a TV program on Channel 4 called Fr Ray Comes Out. In it the Rev'd Ray Andrews, Priest in Charge of St. George the Martyr with St. Alphege & St. Jude at the Borough, just up the road from me, agonises about coming out to his parishioners in a Sunday sermon during Advent.

Ray is a truly nice guy, a good priest, loved by his parishioners, and very effective in what is a mixture of deprived council estates and luxury housing for stockbrokers in the City.

There is no official reaction from the Diocese shown in the film: Archdeacon Michael and Bishop Christopher weren't interviewed. It was a very personal journey for Ray.

Now you couldn't show something like this that didn't have a happy ending. He comes out of it a bit nervously, but the parishioners who were interviewed seemed to be positive, even though many of them had difficulties with the notion of homosexuality from a theological standpoint. It's always different when you know a gay person.

My networks in the deanery must be deficient, or else the news was kept very quiet. I shall have to ask Ethel, my friend who goes to weekday services over there, about it. (She got a cameo role for a moment or two.)

I'm having lunch with the Archdeacon on Tuesday so will ask about it. I know that Michael is comfortable with gay clergy, and the Diocese in general is comfortable with them. But will look for any fallout from the program and report.
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I have been waiting for an "It gets better" video from Singapore. It has arrived, and is first rate. Singapore has been a place where it is at the same time easy to live your own life but difficult to conform to your family's and society's expectations of you. Here are a goodly number of gay men and lesbians who are living examples of the phrase "It gets better". It's worth watching to the end, especially the man with the mask.

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I know that there are hundreds or thousands of families where their gay or lesbian child is accepted and loved for who s/he is. There are many more thousands of families where the child is disowned, kicked out of the house, or abused mentally and physically.

This particular video is of a normal Hispanic-American family whose son came out, and what happened afterward. The father, an ex-Marine, is built like a brick sh*thouse, but the father and mother are so loving and gracious toward their son, that this video is amazingly good. A better set of poster-people for acceptance of lesbian and gay children you could not get anywhere. Their son is cute as well (he reminds me of Justin on Ugly Betty).

It's 15 minutes long, but worth watching.



If only all parents and adults were as rational as well as loving, lots of trauma in the world would be avoided. I don't know about you, but I'm tired of trauma. During Advent, when Christians are preparing ourselves and our homes for the coming of the Christchild, let's think about what kind of home we're welcoming Him to. I'm certain that the Christchild would be absolutely delighted to go to EJ's family home—would He be as happy to come to mine, I wonder.
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I have occasionally heard enthusiastic cries of "God is gay!" from Christian and Jewish friends. However, there is a Taoist temple in Taipei which is dedicated to the gay rabbit god. Pictures and the story are courtesy of our friend Chan, married to our friend George, in Singapore, in his blog Chinatownology, which extols the virtues of Singapore's Chinatown area.

I especially took to heart the last two paragraphs of the story:

Moving beyond Taiwan, a deity in charge of gay relationships is refreshing news. In many countries, religious condemnation and criminal persecution of the homosexuals is very common.

In a landscape of bigotry and ignorance, the Rabbit God arises as one who not only does not condemn gay individuals but assists in their search for love. That explains the international interest in the Gay Rabbit Temple.
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I'm not a fan of Orangina, but I am a fan of imaginative advertising. I'm an even bigger fan of imaginative advertising that has a gay slant.



Now according to a French website (in English), the ad was judged "too polemic". What do you think?

Thanks to Towleroad for this one.
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This is a craigslist posting; I would normally simply link to it but, in the general scheme of things, such postings tend to disappear. So, here it is (the original link, for as long as it lasts, is the title of the piece):

To the Straight Guy at the Party Last Night.

Date: 2010-06-17, 11:32PM EDT

A mutual friend of ours threw a big party for her 30th birthday, tons of people were there and it was a lot of fun. Somewhere along the line you and I ended up on the balcony for some fresh air at the same time. We started chatting; we talked about sports, books, tv—discovered we both are about to start our masters degrees and spent some time debating the pro’s and con’s of the educational system. We talked about hanging out sometime, and you wanted to meet my girlfriend.

I understand how upsetting it was for you when I blinked mildly in surprise and said I was here with my husband. I know it was a shock to your system, if your face had turned any paler I might have called 911. You made a good recovery though—that hurried mutter of “I’m not like that” was very polite and you only knocked over two drinks and one vase in your hurry to rush to anywhere other than near me. I can’t blame you—I forgot how delicate you straight boys are. So I wanted to give you a few helpful hints about where you went wrong last night.

1) As a general rule we don’t walk around with big signs around our neck proclaiming our sexuality. No scarlet letters, no scent of hellfire and brimstone…sorry about that.

2) We do not generally assume that everyone within 5 feet of us must also be homosexual—it was nice of you to immediately reassure me that you are hetero, but it was really unnecessary.

3) Homosexuality is not infectious. While I am sure you meant no disrespect with your hasty departure; in the future you can rest assured that taking a few extra seconds in your mad dash for safety will not result in you being turned gay. It will however keep you from destroying expensive vases and knocking over senior citizens.

4) This next one may come as a surprise; but you are not, in fact, irresistible. The fact that you have a dick does not instantly turn me into a bundle of uncontrolled lust. Contrary to popular opinion, being in the same room with a straight man does not cause a gay man to instantly lose all common sense and basic common courtesy. Though I am not so sure about the reverse.

5) Homosexuals in general get a little irked when people treat us like some sort of leper. Rushing to another mutual friend of ours and advising him of my sexuality, so he could be “forewarned” was really uncalled for.

6) Upon being told (by said mutual friend) to stop being an idiot and that you were not my type anyway… it generally confuses the issue when you then proceed to become upset that I DON’T find you attractive. Three seconds ago you were running through a crowd of people with your hands cupped protectively over your junk as if I might attack you at any moment with a blowjob. See hint number 4.

7) We homosexuals have an odd sense of humor—I can’t help that. Something about watching you freak out as if all the demons of hell were after you just struck me as vastly amusing.

8) While being pissed at me for dissolving into uncontrollable laughter might be understandable…gathering a couple guys together to “teach the fag a lesson” is not.

9) You might also want to drink a little less and be a little more careful about the guys you approach for your little proto-hate-mob.

10) Assuming the two tall muscle-bound bruisers must be uber-hetero and just as appalled by my presence as you was your first mistake. It was an understandable one though. How were you to know that pflag tshirt the first guy was wearing wasn’t a sports team? Also the rainbow ring the second guy was wearing could have meant anything I am sure.

11) In retrospect I suppose that upon hearing your not very subtle hate-talk and seeing who you were heading for; I could have said something instead of just laughing harder. I apologize for that. I should have just introduced you to my husband instead of letting you walk up to him and ask him if he wanted to help you teach “that fag over there” a lesson. I hope that broken nose heals up cleanly.
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There has been a minor kerfuffle lately here over the refusal of a Berkshire bed and breakfast owner to allow a gay couple to stay there. The Conservative shadow home secretary, Chris Grayling, says that he believes that B&B owners using their own homes as business premises who have religious objections to homosexuality should be allowed to refuse accommodation to same sex couples. Of course, he does not believe this should extend to those premises such as hotels or larger B&Bs which are not mostly private homes. The difficulty is that refusing accommodation to same-sex couples is against the law in the United Kingdom. Grayling voted for this law when it was passed. There is no clause that would allow any hotel or B&B owner to refuse accommodation to same-sex couples on the grounds of religion.

My only comment is that I would have a bit more sympathy for the Christian B&B owners if they required a marriage certificate for any mixed-sex couple who booked accommodation there. As they do not so require, they have no leg to stand on and should be prosecuted for discrimination.

As no B&B could continue in business if they required proof of marriage before accommodating a mixed-sex couple—who carries their marriage certificate with them when travelling?—this will not stand and business owners who discriminate against lesbians and gay men will be prosecuted.

In this season of Easter, where the Christian message is that even God himself could suffer and die for our salvation, haters cannot use religion as a bullet-proof vest.
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(I originally posted this to the Integrity Lightspeed email list. However, I think I want others to read it too.)

I have been reflecting on the current situation in regard to lesbian and gay clergy and bishops and the Anglican Communion. Mostly for my own clarity of mind I wanted to talk about recent events in the light of the wider picture.

The confirmation of Canon Glasspool as Suffragan Bishop of Los Angeles will have a massive effect on the Episcopal Church as regards the confirmations process for episcopal elections.

First, it's happened without any corporate arm-twisting or extensive public angst on the part of the bishops and Standing Committees. They just got on with their jobs. The circus that attended upon Gene Robinson's confirmation at General Convention in 2003 was not present, and the Diocese of Los Angeles and the Episcopal Church just got on with it according to normal procedures. (NB: I think that 2003 was played absolutely correctly by the Diocese of New Hampshire under the circumstances of the time.)

Second, I believe that the replacement of apostate bishops and Standing Committees from San Joaquin, Pittsburgh, and Fort Worth reduced the number of negative votes considerably, along with reducing negative comment by bishops around the task before them.

Third, I believe that anomalies like the South Carolina confirmation of a few years ago are likely to become few. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me! Iker's confirmation was "fool me once", now Lawrence's confirmation is "fool me twice". The confirmation process needs to be a tool to ensure that the Church is united in its episcopal leadership. It's much more traumatic to have to depose bishops and reconstitute dioceses than it is to refuse consent.

The effects of Canon Glasspool's confirmation internationally will be just as dramatic.

The wishy-washy response from the Archbishop of Canterbury is, of course, entirely within his personality and previous history. He realises now that, just as the Pope of Rome hath no authority within the dominions of the Monarch of the United Kingdom, the Archbishop hath no authority in former colonies of England. He will, of course, end up applying "sanctions" to the Episcopal Church, more in sorrow than in anger. These may include such items as keeping TEC out of the Primates meetings, the Standing Committee meetings, the Anglican Consultative Council meetings, and eventually the 2018 Lambeth Conference.

However, TEC should respond with sorrowful acceptance of all this. The good news is that a lot of people will now have clear dates in their diaries through not having to attend these bodies. The decision whether to continue TEC funding of international bodies in which it will have no voice is yet to come. I would counsel that funding that is directly connected with mission in the world should continue, while funding that is connected with propping up the institutions of the Anglican Communion ought to be, at the very least, re-evaluated. This would restore a proper balance and allow those funds to be applied at home to the mission of TEC in its provinces in the US and overseas.

The response from other countries will be interesting. I suspect that Canada, Scotland, or Australia may be the next provinces to elect lesbian or gay bishops, and the effect will be much less by that time. The poorer provinces may feel unsettled by all this but if the older provinces all have a stake in this the Anglican Communion will become a rump of the Church of England and the poorer provinces of Africa, Asia, and the Southern Cone.

And thus we come to the Windsor Report. It's dead, just like Jacob Marley. Its ghost will haunt the deliberations of Anglicanism for a while yet, but now that TEC has pretty much indicated by its actions that it will not go along with it (I would be surprised if it even came up for a vote at GC 2012) there is no point in proceeding. I suspect that General Synod here in England will be consumed with talking about woman bishops for a while yet, and there have been powerful voices in that body that have said that it is impossible for GS to be tied to such an agreement in any case. In addition, the old Synod will be dissolved in July with elections being held in September/October this year. So Rowan Williams is boxed in--even his own province is finding it difficult to endorse Windsor.

So, finally, what will emerge? I think that conservative provinces will have a difficult time staying in formal communion with TEC and other more "liberal" provinces. It is possible that they will secede and form their own communion. I think that should this happen informal bonds of communication and communion will begin to form. Companion diocese arrangements (such as that between the Diocese of Southwark and dioceses in Zimbabwe) will continue even while formal bonds within the Anglican Communion are torn asunder.

Rowan Williams is now a broken Archbishop. His international standing has now been compromised. His moral authority in England has been eroding away for years as the C of E stands on the more conservative side of many social issues such as the place of lesbian, gay, transgender people in society and euthanasia for those who are terminally ill and likely to be in intractable pain during their decline. The general public is gradually pulling away from the C of E on these issues and increasingly, I think, sees the C of E and especially its Primate as oddities and throwbacks to an earlier, less complicated society. The bishops and archbishops in the House of Lords have seen their places under increasing threat in the past few years. I suspect that the wider question of House of Lords reform will continue for a while yet.

Rowan's lack of easily-understood communication skills has made him a laughing stock in society. For all his faults, George Carey was easily understandable--a kind of a bluff old Colonel-Blimp type of archbishop whose writings (such as they are) and public statements are easily disgested and readily understood--even if one doesn't necessarily agree with them. Rowan speaks like a Professor of Metaphysics at some University of Cloud Nine--it is nearly impossible to understand what he says unless you too have a doctorate of theology.

I expect that when the question of woman bishops is finally settled in 3 or 4 years' time, an exhausted Rowan will then retire. This will give the new Archbishop an opportunity to settle in before the next Lambeth Conference. It will also give an energetic new Archbishop the task of keeping what's left of the C of E together while women begin to be consecrated to the episcopate.

And I repeat my prediction: the current Bishop of Croydon, Nick Baines, is well positioned to become the next Archbishop of Canterbury. A son of the Midlands (he served his title in the Diocese of Lancaster under our recently-retired bishop of Southwark, Tom Butler, who then brought him down here first as an Archdeacon and then Bishop of Croydon to replace +Wilfred Wood, the first black bishop in the C of E), he is the communications person for the House of Bishops. He blogs, he tweets, he is very thoughtful (even if I don't always agree with what he says). And, what is more, I understand that his diary has been cleared from June or July. This often precedes a move by a Bishop to another post. It would be unusual for a suffragan Bishop to be translated during an interregnum in the suffragan's diocesan bishopric, but not unprecedented. In addition. Southwark is well-served by retired assisting bishops such as Lord Richard Harries, once of Oxford, and David Atkinson, once suffragan Bishop of Thetford and previously Archdeacon of Lewisham here in this diocese. We have one, Mark Wood, who is quite elderly but, as +Tom Butler once observed, "Put him in a taxicab and direct him to a parish and he'll be able to do what needs to be done." Baines would be well placed for Rochester, as he's a broad-minded Evangelical. However, I suspect that he's for the North at the moment and we will have to wait and see. As ++Rowan is Catholic in outlook (if not in temperament, except that he mistakes himself for Pope), the rule of Buggins' Turn means that the next ABC is likely to be an Evangelical. Cue Bishop Nick, with 4 or 5 years of running a diocese under his belt. I'd be willing to bet some money on it.

At the end of all this long, long process, which began in the 1970's (I believe) with an advertisement by Louie Crew, looking for like-minded Episcopalians who sought justice and equality for lesbians and gay men in the Church, we will have at least some Provinces of the Anglican Communion that fully practice that justice which they preach. I hope that I'll be living in one of them.
chrishansenhome: (Default)
I suppose that if Groucho Marx were around he could sing the subject line!

The Office of the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church has announced that Canon Mary Douglas Glasspool has received the necessary consents from Bishops with jurisdiction and Standing Committees. She will therefore be consecrated Suffragan Bishop of Los Angeles on May 15th in Long Beach, CA. Coincidentally, the date is that of Long Beach Pride.

Canon Glasspool will be the first openly-Lesbian bishop in the Anglican Communion and the second openly-gay bishop after Bishop Gene Robinson of New Hampshire.

There has been no announcement from Lambeth Palace, and no news items over here in England. I expect to hear something tomorrow on the Today program on Radio 4. If not, I'll be very annoyed, as they made a big fuss about her election. His Grace the Most Rev'd Rowan Douglas Williams, DD, PC, by the Grace of God Archbishop of Canterbury, made a very po'faced press release in December after her election. I wonder what will be on the Lambeth Palace website tomorrow. Their Twitter account is @lambethpress, and I've subscribed.

I toyed with the idea of travelling to Los Angeles for the consecration, as I did for Gene Robinson's consecration in 2003, but my feet and the fact that I'll be hosting my brother here in London the previous week means that I doubt I'll be able to swing it.

Cheers! Hooray! Just as with woman priests and bishops, soon the election and consecration of openly-gay and lesbian bishops will be seen as run-of-the-mill.
chrishansenhome: (Default)
In some countries in Africa homosexuality is punishable by death, if you survive the gay-bashing you're likely to get when you're found out. Some of the most egregious haters are clergy from the various Christian denominations (along with people from other denominations and none, I suppose). So, it's always a joyous day when a Ugandan newspaper reports the various activities in which Pastor Kiweweesi allegedly engaged with boys from his church.

Even if you're not interested in such things, read the article simply for the grand fun of the colourful language in which the alleged activity is described. The headline is: Kiweweesi Bum Sex Scandal Deepens. It goes on from there.

You won't regret it!

August 2017

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