The statement concludes:
“With opposite sex civil partnerships, and with those for same sex couples, the Church’s teaching on sexual ethics remains unchanged. For Christians, marriage – that is the lifelong union between a man and a woman, contracted with the making of vows – remains the proper context for sexual activity. In its approach to civil partnerships the Church seeks to uphold that standard, to affirm the value of committed, sexually abstinent friendships and to minister sensitively and pastorally to those Christians who conscientiously decide to order their lives differently.”
While we agree wholeheartedly with this statement, we continue to insist that pastorally sensitive ministry must include calling people to repent of their sin and exercising appropriate church discipline.
Given the confusion in our culture, and even in many of our churches, we believe the House of Bishops should be thanked for making such a courageous and counter-cultural statement.
We continue to have concerns about the trajectory of the Church of England, and some of the details of this statement, but pray that the House of Bishops will continue to provide the pastoral leadership that we need, in accordance with the revealed will of our Lord and Saviour.