Accommodation is not Guidance

Posted on December 20, 2018 
Filed under Church of England, Culture wars

“On Tuesday 11th December the House of Bishops published ‘Pastoral Guidance for use in conjunction with the Affirmation of Baptismal Faith in the context of gender transition.’ Whilst sharing the desire to show pastoral care, the content of the Guidance causes me deep concern and I support the request from the Bishops of the Society of St Wilfrid and St Hilda for the reception of the Guidance to be reviewed. I note too the personal reservations expressed about it by the Chair of the House of Bishops’ Delegation Committee, The Rt Rev’d Julian Henderson, and commend the recent critiques produced by the Church Society and the Church of England Evangelical Council.

The Guidance represents a way of accommodating the request from the General Synod that the House of Bishops consider devising a liturgy for the welcome of transgender people. However, in doing so it has raised many more questions than it answers. These include:

Accordingly, I would support any move to change the status of this Guidance so that it is seen as a contribution to the LLF Project, rather than a finished product of the House of Bishops.”

– Bishop of Maidstone Rod Thomas has posted this statement on this website.

Earlier: Bishop Andy Lines on the Church of England’s guidance on liturgies to celebrate gender transition.