Motion putting pressure on Church of England passed by MPs

“Yesterday, Ben Bradshaw MP’s ‘ten minute rule motion’ aimed at forcing the Church of England to conduct same-sex marriages was passed by the House of Commons without a vote.

The motion does not change the law. But it sends a message that some politicians are becoming increasingly willing to compel acceptance of same-sex marriage on those who disagree. …”

Report from Coalition for Marriage in the UK.

Why we are compelled to resist — CEEC

The Church of England Evangelical Council has released a declaration and invites members of the Church of England to signify their assent:

“The Living in Love and Faith (LLF) process and resources have enabled us, as the Church of England, to explore our different understandings of sex, marriage and relationships and, assisted by the Pastoral Principles, become better at the “good disagreement” that many have called for.  …

While we recognise and respect the desire of the bishops to find a way forward, which will hold the Church together, we believe that their proposed draft Prayers of Love and Faith cannot do this. This is because they – and further changes some are calling for in the bishops’ revised pastoral guidance to replace Issues in Human Sexuality – do not keep faith with our biblical inheritance and the doctrine of the Church of England on marriage shared with the wider Anglican Communion as expressed in Lambeth 1.10. …”

Read it all here.

Bill to allow same-sex marriage in Church of England to be tabled

“An MP will seek to introduce a bill next week to permit same-sex marriages to be performed by willing Church of England clergy.

UK law currently prevents its clergy from carrying out same-sex marriages even if they wish to. …”

– More pressure on the Church of England. Story from The National Secular Society.

Key English churches take action as C of E ‘walks away’

“Some of the largest churches in London and Oxford have announced estrangement from the Church of England, including a pause on paying financial contributions.

St Helen’s, Bishopsgate, a large evangelical church with an outreach in London’s financial quarter, was the first to react to the decision by the General Synod to approve a report by the House of Bishops that introduces prayers of blessing for same-sex couples. …”

– At, Russell Powell summarises the response of key evangelical churches in the Church of England – including the news that St Ebbe’s Church in Oxford is also pausing financial contributions to their diocese.

See also:

A response from Vaughan Roberts – Anglican Ink.

Hold your horses

“A few days ago I was at Wycliffe Hall, speaking to some Anglican ordinands about why everyone should do rural ministry. Unsurprisingly the conversation soon turned to LLF, and that General Synod vote. Since I am a member of Synod, I was quizzed about what had happened. After a bit, one student asked me, “Given what’s happened, how can you be so upbeat”? …

I don’t think I have seen such a strong, broad and deep evangelical unity in the Church of England as I see now. It often takes an emergency to bring a group together, and that is precisely what has happened.”

– At Church Society’s blog, Church Society Regional Director the Rev Dr Chris Moore argues that ‘this is the time to stand up, not to walk away’.

Photo: Diocese of Hereford.


Thirty years ago, the Rev John Richardson travelled from the UK to study short-term at Moore College. (This was before the rejuvenation of Oak Hill College in London.)

While in Sydney, he wrote an article which was published in the ACL’s newsletter. (UK Evangelicalism: Optimistic? – PDF version)

At the time, he was not optimistic about the future of Evangelicalism in the Church of England, and argued that strong evangelical leadership was needed –

“You cannot head off a stampede by calling the cows to come back. If the present debacle in English Evangelicalism is to be arrested it will require people of courage and vision who are prepared to go out ahead of the herd, to kick, to shout and to make a noise, so that those who are genuinely Christian, but who are so much like sheep without a shepherd, may be brought back to the good pastures.”

Do continue to pray for evangelical clergy in the Church of England, that they would be given great wisdom by the Lord.

And do pray that the new evangelical unity of which Dr Moore speaks will be effective for the gospel.

Has the listening process of LLF now broken down?

In a letter to Church Times, The Rev James Paice (pictured) asks, “One wonders: has the listening process of LLF now broken down?”

He writes in response to a Church Times report (‘London conservatives look for support from breakaway Anglicans’), published on 1st March 2023, regarding the Bishop of London’s response to a large gathering with clergy –

“The Church Times understands that the London bishops held a two-hour meeting on Thursday evening of last week in St James Garlickhythe, which was attended by between 150 and 200 members of the clergy, many of whom were concerned about the Bishops’ proposals on same-sex blessings. …”

The report references a statement from the Diocese of London, effectively claiming that nothing has really changed.

Anglican Mainstream has published the letter by James Paice – read it here.


GAFCON press release 9th March 2023

Press release, 09 March 2023

“Many Anglicans across the world are deeply distressed by the Church of England’s recent decision to separate from the historic faith through the creation and implementation of prayers of blessing for same-sex marriages.

Several churches and Provinces within the Anglican Communion are considering their future with respect to the Church of England. The Primates of The Global South Fellowship of Anglican Churches (who represent the majority of the world’s worshipping Anglicans) have already declared that they are in impaired communion with the Church of England and said that they do not recognise the present Archbishop of Canterbury as the “first among equals” leader of the global Anglican Communion.

The Gafcon Movement is a global family of authentic Anglicans standing together to proclaim the unchanging truth of the Bible in a changing world, and to support those who wish to remain Anglican but feel they are no longer able to sit under the authority of their Bishop or Diocese.

On 20 February 2023 the Gafcon Primates endorsed the statement released by the Global South Fellowship of Anglicans pointing to Paragraph 13 of the Jerusalem Declaration (2008) which says: ‘We reject the authority of those churches and leaders who have denied the orthodox faith in word or deed’.

In a number of countries around the world (including Australia, Brazil, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, the United States, and Wales), Gafcon has supported the establishment of alternative episcopal oversight for those Anglicans who in good conscience cannot remain part of their provincial Anglican Church.

Presently, the Gafcon Primates are meeting regularly with the Primates of The Global South Fellowship of Anglican Churches and other Orthodox Primates across the world to discern the path forward. The outcome of these meetings will affect the majority of the 85 million Anglicans worldwide.

Gafcon will not be commenting on the content of these meetings while they are ongoing but will be releasing a statement at the end of the upcoming GAFCON IV Conference to be held from 17-21 April in Kigali, Rwanda.”

When is a wedding not a wedding

“A woman in a white wedding dress laughs as she looks up into a cloud of rainbow confetti. She stands at the entrance to a church, holding hands with her partner, surrounded by friends, family and photographers. The photo is shared on Twitter with the notice that they are now Revd and Mrs X.

But this is not a wedding. It cannot legally be a wedding…”

At Church Society’s blog, Ros Clarke highlights the mess caused by the internal contradictions in Justin Welby’s ‘radical inclusion’.

“No wonder that what is being proposed does not satisfy anyone.”

Would John Stott have continued on as an Anglican?

“One of the largest evangelical Anglican churches in the UK, St Helen’s Bishopsgate, recently announced that it will no longer accept episcopal oversight from the Church of England’s House of Bishops.

This comes as a result of the General Synod’s decision to bless couples who are in a same-sex marriage or civil partnership. …

The current context raises the question of whether the late John Stott, the famous Anglican evangelical stalwart, would have himself continued to remained.

In 1966 Stott and Martyn Lloyd-Jones had a confrontation which many regarded as a dispute over whether it was time for evangelicals to withdraw from the Anglican communion. For Lloyd-Jones the time was now, but for the Stott the response was not yet. …”

Presbyterian Mark Powell asks the question. We suspect the answer to the hypothetical question in the title would be, “Yes. And aligned with GAFCON.”

Rev. Calvin Robinson: a crisis of faith for the Anglican Church?

“What follows is one of the most articulate and powerful speeches you are likely to view this year. It is by Rev. Calvin Robinson, who recently argued at the Oxford Union as to why Christianity should not allow gay marriage, or even the blessing of same-sex unions.

Robinson’s twelve-minute talk is a model of graciousness, fidelity to historic Christian doctrine, and personal courage. …”

– You may already have seen the speech by Calvin Robinson. If not, take a look – and also see Mark Powell’s summary in Spectator Australia.

Image: Oxford Union.

Chaplain who was sacked for identity politics sermon to appeal ruling

“An ordained Church of England (CofE) chaplain, who was sacked and secretly reported to the government’s terrorist watchdog for a moderate sermon in a school chapel on identity politics, will appeal an employment tribunal ruling handed down this week.

Supported by the Christian Legal Centre, Rev. Dr Bernard Randall had taken his employer, Trent College in Nottingham, to court for discrimination, harassment, victimisation and unfair dismissal.

He has described the ruling against him as a ‘blow for free speech and Christian freedoms.‘…”

Christian Concern in the UK has this report on the sacking of the Rev. Dr Bernard Randall.

This story is quite an eye-opener to what is happening in the UK and in the Church of England.

You can hear his redelivery of the offending sermon below – do take the time to watch and listen.

Also read the transcript, courtesy of Christian Concern.

This case is also a reminder of why Australia needs robust freedom of religion legislation.

See also:

School chaplain loses unfair dismissal case over LGBT sermon – BBC News.

“Employment judge Victoria Butler, who heard evidence from Rev Randall and senior school staff during a three-week hearing, dismissed the clergyman’s claim he was ‘sacked’ by the school after he twice delivered a sermon called Competing Ideologies in chapel services. …”

Class and the evangelical church in England

“I have been asked to write some observations on class in the evangelical church in England.

Those who asked me apparently think that my Australian background gives me an advantage; I am not embedded in the British class system myself, so can be more objective. I’m not sure that this is all that much an advantage: class in Britain is a very complicated and deeply-entrenched matter, not at all easy to understand. It still surprises me that even after 17 years living and working in Britain, I find certain aspects of the class system entirely foreign. Reading and researching on class issues has demonstrated that there is a lot that even now I had never realised, in particular the how powerful are the emotions and attitudes involved. The classes are different, in significant ways, and it really matters to people.

What has struck me most, and what will be the main point of this series of articles, is that running middle-class churches will not reach the working classes. …”

Kirsten Birkett begins a series of articles at Church Society.

William Taylor: The Bishops have chosen to walk apart – but others stand with us

William Taylor, Rector of St. Helen’s Bishopsgate in London, has made an important announcement – and he speaks with the support of Anglican bishops worldwide including

Kanishka Raffel, Archbishop of Sydney;
Foley Beach, Primate of North America and GAFCON Primates Council Chairman;
Jay Behan, Bishop of the Church of Confessing Anglicans Aotearoa New Zealand;
Glenn Lyons, Presiding Bishop of REACH South Africa.

See William Taylor’s announcement and the messages of support from these Anglican leaders.

‘Catastrophic” — Dr Lee Gatiss on the Global South’s rebuke of the Church of England

Church Society Director Lee Gatiss is interviewed by Dave Piper for Trans World Radio about the Global South’s rejection of the Church of England and the Archbishop of Canterbury.

“Lee argues this has left the majority of Anglicans worldwide aghast.

He says vicars will essentially be left to decide doctrine themselves – and could get it in the neck if they go against society’s views on marriage and sexual relationships. And he warns some parishes and dioceses could break away and seek oversight from outside of the UK.”

Watch here. 8 minutes.

Even Vladimir Putin noticed the C of E’s General Synod

Even Vladimir Putin has commented on the Church of England’s General Synod. (Not that we’re endorsing other comments in his speech.)

Link via Anglican Ink.

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