Colin Coward of Changing Attitude does himself absolutely no favours when he consistently misrepresents the position of those he opposes.

Colin CowardThe GAFCON founding documents – the Jerusalem statement and declaration – identify a false gospel and false leaders in the Anglican Communion. Their false gospel is one which extends unconditional welcome and full inclusion to LGB&T people. The false leaders are all those bishops, clergy and lay leaders who are themselves LGB or T or fulfill the Gospel of Jesus Christ by welcoming LGB&T people unconditionally as brothers and sisters in the Church.

GAFCON maintains that the false gospel “promotes a variety of sexual preferences and immoral behaviour as a universal human right. It claims God’s blessing for same-sex unions over against the biblical teaching on holy matrimony. In 2003 this false gospel led to the consecration of a bishop living in a homosexual relationship.”

Really? That would be why “LGB” people like Sam Allberry and Vaughan Roberts are part of the invited English delegates in Nairobi.

It is this consistent demand of Colin Coward that LGB people in the Anglican Communion must adhere to his liberalising agenda that does him no favours. How hard is it to accept that there are people in the same situation as him that take a remarkably different view to sexual ethics and identity?

Every single time Changing Attitude use the language of LGB to refer not just to sexual orientation but also a particular ideology of sexual behaviour and identity they demonstrate their unwillingness to engage properly in the debate the Church of England needs to have. CA may go on day and night about how GLB personal stories are not being listened to, but in reality they want to control and prevent any GLB stories being told that contradict their narrow paradigm of self-actualisation.

Changing Attitude want to promote a narrative of “them” (the “straights”) telling “us” (the LGB) what to do. In reality, there’s plenty of us LGB who think what CA are offering is unsatisfying and a betrayal of classic Christian discipleship.

6 Comments on “Misrepresentation

  1. It’s similar to the process whereby “homophobia” changed from being used to mean an irrational fear of homosexuals to disagreeing with the practice of homosexual acts. Not surprising, given all that Coward has said in the past, that he seeks yet more redefinition to try and win that argument.
    How he got ordained when he is so clearly full of hate for those he disagrees with is a mystery!

  2. I don’t think they count you or Sam Allbery as authentic GLB people. After all, Colin Coward has come on here before and told you to fear Judgement Day when you’ll have to answer to God for how you’ve misrepresented GLB people, perpetuating discrimination and hate.

  3. I sometimes feel I am living in a different universe when I read CC’s blog, or the comments of the Thinklies over at Thinking Anglicans, who go ballistic whenever a mild comment is made on biblical authenticity which doesn’t accord with their view of themselves. They frequently refer to Gafconites as the ‘schismatics’ when really it is Gene Robinson and CC et al who are causing schism – Gafcon wouldn’t have happened if it weren’t for them and their supporters.

    PS Peter – good to see that your bro is in Nairobi. A great post from him on SF!

  4. In any given church of any denomination, there may be
    members of four groups:

    Opposite-sex attracted or same-sex attracted but
    committed to lifelong celibacy

    Single people (both straight and gay) who are
    not in a relationship but who would be open to one if this developed in
    their life

    Single people (both straight and gay) who are
    dating – these relationships may or may not be sexual but with couples who don’t
    live together, we won’t necessarily know or ask

    Couples committed-to-marriage who are married or
    civil partnered

    Of course, all these people’s stories should be accorded
    courtesy and respect – these are people’s lives we’re listening to. But one person’s journey of faith will be
    different from another person’s journey – and it’s not the case that some earn
    more ‘brownie points’ than others.

    However, some churches will be welcoming and affirming only to
    group 1, whereas other churches will be welcoming and affirming to groups 1, 2,
    3 and 4. (Contrary to urban myth, ‘inclusive’
    churches do not insist that gay people enter relationships or that gay people
    in relationships have sex. Inclusive churches may also have members who are committed to lifelong celibacy – but who enjoy the choral

    Changing Attitude (and similar groups) are ‘standing in the
    gap’ for LGB people who have made adult and considered decisions to join groups
    2, 3 or 4. Whichever side
    of the argument we fall on, perhaps we should all be working for a church
    culture (in all our churches) where
    people of groups 1,2,3 and 4 find that their church offers opportunity for authenticity, respect from others in the congregation, and unequivocal
    safe space.

    • I know this is the approach taken by organisations like the Gay Christian Network and, whatever some sections of the Church might think of them, I admire the genuine efforts being made by this group to build bridges. However, without wishing to be cynical, could you point me to the section of the Changing Attitudes website that suggests that they believe position 1 is a valid Christian position? I think Peter’s point is that Coward seems to be saying in this letter that this position is unequivocally evil.

    • You left out the twice (or more)-divorced with former spouses still alive. If they meet someone new, where’s their opportunity in church for authenticity, respect and safe space. Especially when the House of Bishop’s guidelines for re-marriage of divorcees challenges parish priests to ask: ‘Would the effects of the proposed marriage on individuals, the wider community and the Church be such as to undermine the credibility of the Church’s witness to marriage?’

      Of course, the House of Bishops might just have a point in ensuring that the Church, while extending welcome and compassion to all, has to maintain the credibility of its witness to marriage as presented through the apostles and prophets; that making an U-turn on the sanctity of marriage and the expression of sexuality outside of its Genesis-initiated context of sexual differentiation will undermine its historic Christian mission.

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