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Sandi Toksvig urges Archbishop of Canterbury to ‘come out as a gay ally’ after meeting for tea

by Tola Mbakwe
Sandi Toksvig.PNGthumb.PNG - Banner image
Twitter video screenshot/ @sanditoksvig

Broadcaster Sandi Toksvig has aired her frustrations about the Church of England’s stance on same-sex marriage with the Archbishop of Canterbury.

The two met for tea this week after Toksvig criticised a speech Most Rev Justin Welby made at the Lambeth Conference last year affirming the Anglican Communion’s 1998 resolution that homosexual sex is a sin.

In a video posted on Toksvig’s Twitter on Thursday evening with the caption “As the Actress said to the Bishop… #comeoutforlove”, the comedian said the society the Church “purports to represent are not remotely in step".

“Justin was keen for me to see that they are moving forward, but conceded that any progress as I would see it, if it happens at all will be glacial,” she said.

“It was very clear that opposing factions of the worldwide Anglican Communion are being in part held together at the expense of the human rights of the LGBT plus community. It’s not okay”.

The meeting comes a week after the Church has been the centre of controversy due to bishops publishing draft prayers for same-sex couples, which will be considered by the General Synod next month.

The prayers, which include thanksgiving, dedication, and a prayer for God's blessing, are part of a larger set of proposals in response to the Church’s six-year Living in Love and Faith process of “listening, learning, and discernment on questions of identity, sexuality, and marriage”.

In addition to the publication of the prayers, the bishops also issued a public apology to LGBTQI+ people for the way in which the Church has rejected or excluded them.

Archbishop Justin said he wouldn’t personally perform any services of blessings for same-sex couples to not comprise his responsibility of unity in the Anglican Communion.

In her video message, Toksvig encouraged the archbishop to “come out”.

“I said, sir, I asked Justin, if he could just come out. I don't mean make a surprise announcement about his sexuality, but come out as a gay ally, basically, to come out for love, love for all without exceptions, and not the current Orwellian position, where it would seem we are all created equal, but some are more equal than others.

“I hope that will happen. But I do not intend to wait upon the church. In the next few weeks, I will be reaching out to the LGBT+ community and all our allies to see what can be done. The present position is untenable. In the meantime, please let's all come out for love.”

Archbishop Justin, who months ago on Twitter agreed to meet the QI presenter for talks on the Church and same-sex marriage, has not publically mentioned anything about the meeting.

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