High-ranking Church of England officials endorse same-sex marriage: ‘the heresy of rank’

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Several Church of England bishops publicly called on the institution to start arranging same-sex marriages last week.

The Very Reverend Dr Steven Croft, who is Bishop of Oxford, became the first sitting senior bishop in the Church of England to affirm same-sex unions last week, according to The Sunday Times.

Croft’s assertion was echoed by the Right Reverend Dr John Inge, Bishop of Worcester, and the Right Reverend Martin Gorick, Bishop of Dudley, both of whom are also high ranking prelates.

Croft, who sits in the House of Lords, said he once had an ‘orthodox’ Christian outlook on sex and marriage but has since ‘slowly but surely experienced a change of heart and mind’ .

The bishop has argued that it is ‘unjust’ for the Church of England to continue to refuse to marry same-sex couples, saying the historic Christian position has spawned ‘gross injustice, anger and alienation among a whole generation “.

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The Bishop of Oxford, Dr Steven Croft, at St. Savior in High Green, Sheffield, following a prayer service.
(Jonathan Pow/PA Images via Getty Images)

Croft also called for a change in ecclesiastical law that would allow “the solemnization of same-sex marriage in the Church of England” and backed a move to provide lay and clergy with the “freedom to marry partners of the same sex.” sex”. [and] freedom to be sexually active.

In a 52-page essay titled “Together in Love and Faith,” Croft compared homosexuality to being left-handed, writing, “I don’t know what harm would come from blessing unions or same-sex marriage.”

“The Church of England’s current position on same-sex relationships no longer seems appropriate. Change is needed,” he wrote.

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Queen Elizabeth II greets then Bishop of Sheffield Steven Croft as she arrives at Sheffield Cathedral for the traditional Holy Royal Service at Sheffield Cathedral on April 2, 2015 in Sheffield, England.
(Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Inge and Gorick backed Croft’s position in a joint letter, writing in part, “We believe the time has come for the church to honor and celebrate same-sex relationships. Our preferred option would be for same-sex couples to be able to marry in church.

The bishops urged the Church of England to start blessing same-sex unions and called on church leaders to stop ‘whispering privately’ about their support for changing the church’s stance on homosexuality .

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Church of England bishops are expected to make recommendations to the General Synod in February on whether to revise the millennial norm that marriage should be between a man and a woman, which could open the door to a vote without precedent on the matter. .

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip stand during the Holy Service led by the Bishop of Worcester, Dr John Inge, at Christ Church Cathedral on March 28, 2013 in Oxford, England. Inge has spoken out in favor of same-sex marriage in the Church of England.
(WPA Pool/Pool via Getty Images)

“We finally have a senior diocesan bishop who is ready to break the self-imposed collegial silence of the English bishops and call for an end to the multiple injustices in the way the Church of England treats LGBT+ people,” Jayne said. Ozanne, a homosexual. rights activist who sits in the General Synod, according to the Sunday Times.

“Bishop Steven is to be applauded for speaking his mind clearly and for being one of the few serving diocesan bishops to risk the wrath of conservatives by saying in public what so many are whispering in private. I hope this step courageous will encourage others to be open about their own points of view.

The Bishop of Oxford Steven Croft has called for a change in Church law that would allow “the solemnization of same-sex marriage in the Church of England”.
(Jonathan Pow/PA Images via Getty Images)

Andrea Williams, chief executive of the London-based nonprofit Christian Concern, called Croft, Dudley and Gorick “revisionist bishops” in a statement provided to Fox News Digital.

Williams’ nonprofit has advocated for several people who have taken legal action against Church of England institutions over what they claim is discrimination against their Christian beliefs regarding sexuality and gender .

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Williams said the bishops’ position poses “a sea change” that threatens to tear “a rift in the Anglican communion” across the world.

“The official position of the Church is consistent with the clear teaching of Scripture that sex belongs in the marriage of a man and a woman,” Williams said. “Nevertheless, bishops and clergy have been allowed to sow endless doubt about what Christians throughout history and around the world have recognized as God’s model for sexuality.”

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby leads the opening service of the 15th Lambeth Conference at Canterbury Cathedral in Kent, UK on July 31, 2022.
(Gareth Fuller/PA Images via Getty Images)

“Their theological arguments have been debunked time and time again by genuine scholars,” she continued. “Jesus himself clearly upheld the Old Testament sexual ethics while demonstrating grace and offering forgiveness to all who sought it.”

Williams went on to say that such stances of church leaders are driven by “an unrelenting desire to reflect societal values”, and that they display viewpoints that are “heresy of rank” and “nothing”. less than apostasy”.

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An interior view of Holy Cross Church on October 21, 2022 in London, England.

“The apostolic gospel calls on all people, everywhere, to repent – ​​to turn from their sins and turn to Christ,” she added. “Such a radical change in the nature of repentance, in the doctrine of marriage, alters the gospel itself.”

“This alternative gospel that endorses sexual chaos does not love or serve both God and society,” she added.

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“Any move by the Church of England to revise the doctrine of marriage will result in an open rift in the Anglican Communion, not just in the UK but around the world,” Williams warned. “Faithful bishops around the world must now stand up and defend the historical and biblical doctrine of marriage between one woman and one man for life.”

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