Civil partnership shame of the Church of Ireland
The recent civil partnership of a C. of I. cleric, with the apparent permission of his bishop, is a day of shame for the Church of Ireland and marks a significant abandonment of its responsibility to hold out the Gospel to the people of Ireland.
Once again, an arrogant action by liberal catholics has effectively brought deep division into the Church of Ireland and its witness. Rather than uphold the faith, liberal catholics have re-interpreted it to fit in with what society finds acceptable - what God thinks no longer matters. Not only is this action deeply schismatic and divisive, but it is also contrary to the ordination vows of all those involved.
If this action has been approved by the Bishop, as it appears it has been, then both the clergyman and the Bishop should have the decency to resign. In the light of the enormity of this step, were others consulted before permission was given? Did any of the Archbishops know that this was going to happen?
Some serious questions need to be asked of the Archbishops of the Church of Ireland. It is well known that the present archbishops are regarded as liberal catholics. Indeed the response of the Archbishop of Armagh gives great cause for concern, as he appears not to be condemning this civil partnership, but rather viewing it as a new situation for the church to come to terms with and accept. Will the archbishops clearly speak out in support of the biblical, Gospel standards of the Church of Ireland?
It is not acceptable that clergy or bishops of the Church of Ireland ignore the Gospel standards of the C of I in favour of their own idiosyncratic ideas or in a desire to embrace the values of a sinful world. It is time that that C of I decides that it is a Gospel church, true to its formularies, as expressed in the Articles of Religion, the Prayer book and the ordinal.
Church of Ireland people, the people in the pews should rise up and reject this unilateral, arrogant and hypocritical situation. A special synod should be called on this issue. The cleric and all those clergy involved in the background to this action should resign. It really is time for action by God’s people.