Anglican Mainstream not so mainstream


Last weekend “Anglican Mainstream” held a highly publicized conference in the greater London area. Andrew Brown describes what happened, and makes it clear how little of the mainstream Anglican mainstream represents in England.

“The danger with pretending to be persecuted, misunderstood and all alone is that you might wake up and find that it is true. Something like this seems to have happened over the weekend to Anglican Mainstream, an organisation devoted to keeping gay people out of the Church of England. Only 30 people turned up for an Anglican Mainstream conference on gay people in Westminster this weekend, and to make the fiasco worse, four of these happy few were gay Christians come to see what was being said about them.

One of them put up a long blogpost afterwards describing the occasion. This, in turn, was picked up by Peter Ould, a sexually conservative vicar whose blog attempts to be a place where Christians can disagree constructively about the matter.

Ould, who, remember, is on the organisers’ side, thinks that Anglican Mainstream has become repulsive even to its natural allies: “There are tens of thousands of Christians in the UK longing to be able to witness effectively in this field … but if all they are presented with is out-of-date and blinkered dogmatism, they simply won’t be interested.”

Two more small straws in this wind came in the form of letters: Lord “Hallelujah” Carey, the former archbishop of Canterbury, signed along with Michael Nazir Ali, the former bishop of Rochester and Wallace Benn, the suffragan bishop of Lewes, a letter defending a psychotherapist who tries to “cure” gay men. That’s two has-beens and a never-was lining up on the anti side. Meanwhile 100 serving clergy in the diocese of London signed a letter asking to bless civil partnerships in their churches. Which represents the future?”

More of Brown’s article here. The article is actually making a different point than simply pointing out the fringe nature of Canon Sudgen’s organization. But there’s a link in the article to the full report about the conference posted on Changing Attitudes.

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