The Diocese Of Liverpool
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Bishop to attend Lambeth Conference without wife in protest at bar on gay clergy partners

Tue 26 Feb 2019
By Alex Williams

The Bishop of Liverpool has said he will attend an international summit of Anglican leaders without his wife next year, in protest at a bar on the partners of gay clergy.

Rt Rev Paul Bayes described the decision to prevent same-sex partners of clergy from attending the 2020 Lambeth Conference as an "act of exclusion".

In a message posted on Twitter, he said: "I deeply regret that, in the fractious complexities of our life as a worldwide people, this act of exclusion has taken its place.

 

"It is a grief to me and to my wife, and to many others. Despite this, I aim to attend the Conference, alone, in the hope of a common future."

The Anglican Communion - which includes national churches from 165 countries - was forced to clarify its stance on the matter last week, following "misunderstanding".

 

General Secretary Dr Josiah Idowu-Fearon said: "The invitation process has...needed to take account of the Anglican Communion's position on marriage which is that it is the lifelong union of a man and a woman.

"Given this, it would be inappropriate for same-sex spouses to be invited to the conference."

The prospect of the same-sex partners of gay bishops being "received in good standing" at the 2020 Lambeth Conference had prompted consternation among conservative Anglicans.

Nigerian archbishop Nicholas Okoh from the Global Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (known as GAFCON) cited it among his reasons for urging a boycott.

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