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Gary Doak
Father Richard Coles.jpg
Gary Doak
World News

Richard Coles 'frustrated' at lack of LGBT equality in the Church of England

by Premier Journalist

Celebrity vicar, Rev Richard Coles has shared his frustration at the lack of equality the LGBT has within the Church of England.

Speaking to PA as he promotes his first novel, Murder Before Evensong, Rev Coles shared how he is "a bit weary" of fighting for LGBT rights in the Church of England, but says we "should not shirk a difficult task if what's at stake is justice and human dignity."

He said: "The big battle for LGBT people in the Church of England, has been trying to get for us the equal treatment that the rest of the world is used to." 

"Lots of us who are LGBT, are in the Church, but the Church at the moment resists giving us equal status, which you would expect and enjoy anywhere else.

"That can be frustrating sometimes. "I don't want to pretend it's just an easy matter, it's not. "It requires a lot of people to come a long way.

"But we should not shirk, a difficult task, if what's at stake is justice and human dignity."

Rev Coles lost his civil partner David in 2019. 

Earlier this year, the 60-year-old retired from priesthood, after eleven years ministering in Finedon in Northamptonshire and is now living in Sussex. 

He continued: "I loved being a parish priest, I never found questions about sexuality got in the way of being a parish priest."

"It's more the institutional level. As an incumbent of the Church of England I was under a discipline, and that's quite right, but now perhaps I'm able to speak more freely about these matters than I was when I was in post.

"I certainly don't want to leave the Church of England and I certainly don't want to stop ministering as a priest, but I don't particularly want to have to uphold aspects of its life which I think are not consistent with our calling to truth and justice and human dignity.

"I think everything will be all right in the end, it just might be a while before we get to the end, I'm full of hope."

His book will be published on 9th June. 

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