From Our Bishops

This letter has been shared by Bishop John and Bishop Martin. In it, they explain that up until now we have been asked, as bishops of the Church of England, to hold the Living in Love and Faith process of reflection, learning and discernment, rather than express their own views. “That is exactly what we have tried to do,” they write, “listening rather than talking. Now, though, in the interest of transparency, we think it right for us to make our own beliefs and hopes plain. In short, we believe that the time has come for the Church to celebrate and honour same sex relations. People do not choose their sexuality and all should be able to express it within loving
committed relationships. Our preferred option would be for same sex couples to be able to be married in Church. We hope and pray that this will be the outcome of the LLF process. There isn’t space to set out our reasons in this letter, but either of us would be happy to talk them through. Suffice it to say that we believe our conclusion to be consonant with the Biblical witness.”

I would simply like to add one comment from a personal perspective. I fully support the aims of the Campaign for Equal Marriage, when it says:

We believe that the consciences of everyone should be protected – no member of the clergy should be forced to conduct a marriage they disagree with. No member of the clergy should be prevented from celebrating a marriage involving a same-sex couple.

This is why when voting for General Synod members last year, I chose candidates whose views both overlap AND differ radically from my own on this issue.

Sarah Northall
4th November 2022

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