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wales cathedral.jpg
Photo from Llandaff Cathedral website
wales cathedral.jpg
Photo from Llandaff Cathedral website
World News

Church in Wales lays flowers to commemorate LGBT people harmed by Christians

by Lydia Davies

The Church in Wales is allegedly moving towards enabling same-sex marriages within its churches.

Since 2021, gay couples have had the opportunity for their unions to be blessed in the church following civil ceremonies, yet formal approval for church weddings has not been secured due to constitutional rules that require a two-thirds majority from clergy, bishops, and lay members.

Approval from lay members remains uncertain due to some holding traditional views on marriage.

To foster 'inclusivity and reconciliation', a significant service at Llandaff Cathedral is being organised by OneBodyOneFaith in collaboration with The Gathering. This event aims to commemorate individuals who have felt excluded or harmed by Christian communities due to their sexuality or gender identity.

Participants will engage in acts of remembrance and hope, including laying white flowers for those lost to suicide and purple flowers to symbolise hope for the future, as well as writing in a memory book for loved ones.

Bishop Mary Stallard shared her enthusiasm for the service with Nation Cymru: “I am delighted that this service is happening in Llandaff Cathedral. We value our calling to be an inclusive church, and this work underlines this. It is my firm hope that this service will offer a way-marker on an important journey of healing and transformation, both for those who take part and for our wider church and faith communities.”

Bishop Gregory Cameron spoke on the importance of acknowledging harm. He told the Welsh news outlet: “As the Church reassesses its attitude towards LGBT+ persons, we have to recognise not only discrimination but also real harm caused to individuals. This service is intended to contribute something towards acknowledgment of that harm, and to take a step in the direction of healing.”

Luke Dowding, CEO of OneBodyOneFaith, highlighted the significance of this memorial service: “This memorial service is a bold opportunity to speak truthfully about the harm LGBT+ people continue to experience but also of a future where the Christian church is no longer complicit in this. We are grateful for traditions like the Church in Wales who demonstrate clear leadership on this.”

The service welcomes everyone and is scheduled for Sunday 26 May at 5.30 pm at Llandaff Cathedral. 

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