Thursday, December 13, 2012

When Bishops are Afraid

From PinkNews, an update about the Church of England's response to the UK government's effort to lock them out of performing same sex marriages  (my emphasis):
The Telegraph now reports church officials have acknowledged that they could potentially “live with” the government’s proposals and its specific legal safeguards..... 
Meanwhile, the House of Lords heard claims that several bishops secretly support the principle of equal marriage but are afraid to speak out because it would contradict the official policy of the church. 
Lord Harries of Pentregarth, the former Bishop of Oxford, said that many bishops not only accept the protections the government proposes but would actively support equal marriage.
He said many church members “warmly welcome” the government’s plans, adding: “A fair number of individual bishops in the Church of England also support it, but are not able to say so publicly at the moment because of the political situation in which the Church of England now finds itself.” 
The Bishop of Salisbury and the Bishop of Buckingham have so far openly supported marriage rights for gay couples.
That's a sorry state of affairs, leaving Bishops of Salisbury and Buckingham on their own.

Now, some will say that because Bishops are in it for the long haul, collegiality in their body is important.  But surely it's possible to disagree politely.  Surely it's worth it to explain to the public that not EVERYONE in the C of E hierarchy is stuck in an Angela Thirkell novel ca. 1935.

It's of a piece with the essay I wrote here  back in 2011 on the need for C of E bishops to come out as leaders.  And those who are gay should come out, period.  It's time to get out of the closet and stand in the light.

It's called leadership.

It's called honesty.

And it's the right thing to do.


Pfalz prophet said...

"Be not afraid" is strewn all over Scripture, and provides bookends to the life of Christ, doubled bookends if you include the Annunciation. There must be some terrible retribution should any in the episcopate dare to speak out. Get to the source of the threat and name it.

JCF said...

Off-topic: I'm having one of those "Is the internet out to get me?" experiences (and it's making me feel Old&Poor).

A few days ago, Mark Lawrence's latest "Preludium" post turned up wonky for me, on my usual browser: IE8 (NB: I *cannot* update to IE9, because I run WindowsXP. See what I mean re Old&Poor?).

I didn't think too much about it...even though I've been losing other websites on IE lately (that run w/ Disqus for commenting). I thought maybe Mark made some kind of code issue? (even though the page looks fine on Firefox).

So then this evening: the exact *same kind* of wonkiness has happened on Elizabeth Kaeton's latest "Telling Secrets" post (again, it looks fine on Firefox...which, for a bunch of reasons, is not my preferred browser). Coincidence? Or will EVERY website become corrupted on IE8 one after another???


IT said...

JCF, probably IE8 isn't keeping up. Microsoft is noted for using non-standard HTML manifestations, plus the coding standards ahve changed (up to XML in many cases) and it's possible that some coding change is no longer supported by the old Exploder. It may be happening slowly because it has to work through old stylesheets in the cache, or something like that.

Have you tried Google Chrome?