News by email Donate

Suggestions

Justin Welby Synod banner.jpg
Church of England
Justin Welby Synod.jpg
Church of England
World News

Welby says he was ‘threatened with parliamentary action’ over same-sex marriage decision

by Kelly Valencia

The Archbishop of Canterbury has criticised political attempts to “force same-sex marriage” in the Church of England.

Speaking at the Anglican Consultative Meeting in Ghana, Most Rev Justin Welby told over 110 Anglican leaders he was twice asked to attend meetings with MPs where he was “threatened with parliamentary action” over the issue.

Archbishop Justin said: “For years I've been told by, principally, Christians around the world that Islam would take over Europe. I've always said that would not happen. The greater danger was the secular ‘nones’. I mean those who when asked about their faith, say ‘none’. ‘I have no faith.’

“The result is clear. In the last few weeks, as part of our discussions about sexuality and the rules around sexuality in the Church of England, I talked of our interdependence with all Christians, not just Anglicans, particularly those in the global south with other faith majorities.

“As a result, I was summoned twice to Parliament and threatened with parliamentary action to force same-sex marriage on us, called in England ‘equal marriage’.”

It is understood the parliamentary meetings were held just a few days before the Church of England’s historic debate to allow clergy to bless couples in same-sex marriages or civil partnerships last week.

The move means LGBT+ couples could ask any clergy in Church of England parishes to have a service of thanksgiving and blessing as soon as July.

But prior to the final vote, concerns had been raised of the potential impact the decision might have on the wider union of the Anglican Communion, as many provinces see the move as a departure from biblical teaching.

Following one the meetings, it also emerged Archbishop Justin had reportedly said he would rather lose the Church of England’s privileged status in the UK than see a split in the Anglican Communion. The comments were later dismissed by Lambeth Palace. 

Archbishop Justin told leaders in Ghana he had warned of the impact of the decision but they had been “dismissed by many” in the General Synod.

“When I speak of the impact that actions by the Church of England will have on those abroad in the Anglican Communion, those concerns are dismissed by many. Not all, but by many in the General Synod,” he continued.

He later added: “Obedience to God comes ahead of loyalty to country. That was not popular when I said it, last Monday night, to some Members of Parliament.”

Leaders from Rwanda and Uganda have already condemned the Church of England’s decision, with the Archbishop of Kenya being the latest to add his “sadness” at the “departure of our mother church from the true gospel”.

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email

Connect

Donate

Donate