Canon David Porter has warned that decisions need to be made
By Nick Duffy
An adviser to the Archbishop of Canterbury has warned Bishops that “decisions will have to be made” on the Church’s approach to same-sex marriage.
The College of Bishops is meeting this week to have “shared conversations” about the Church’s approach to sexuality and same-sex couples.
The long-awaited Pilling Report recommended last year that the church adopt a more conciliatory approach to same-sex couples, but the House of Bishops refused to back formal blessings for marriages, and forbade gay clergy from marrying.
Canon David Porter, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Director of Reconciliation, today warned Bishops ahead of this week’s meeting that a final decision cannot be stalled forever.
He said: “For me the ideal outcome will be that people will be able to articulate with a measure of empathy the views of others that they don’t agree with.
“When we get to the process beyond the shared conversations, decisions will have to be made, because we can’t leave it in this space forever.
“The way we approach the making of those decisions is done in a way that honours the fact that we are brothers and sisters of Christ.
“Even though we disagree, we are going to do that in a way that reflects that reality as much as the reality of our convictions on these issues.”
Reverend Michael Brown, Director of Mission and Public Affairs, added: “There’s a lot of anxiety around about what may lie behind these conversations about hidden agendas.
“I hope that we’ve unpacked that sufficiently in the light of Pilling indeed to show that that isn’t the case. There’s a lot of reassurance that says this is what it says on the tin and it’s not something hidden.”