(CEN) Simon Butler–”˜Stop blaming the bishops over Shared Conversations’

Vicar of Battersea (Southwark) and Prolocutor of the Convocation of Canterbury in General Synod, Canon Simon Butler, an openly gay priest, told us he has not interpreted the actions of the Primates’ Meeting as primarily an attack on The Episcopal Church (TEC USA) or on LGBT people, but instead has come to see it as reaffirmation of the bonds of communion from the Primates.

He said it was a statement of love and fellowship that steadfastly refuses to exclude American Anglicans, including those who are LGBT, while at the same time reaffirming ”˜what cannot be but obvious to most people’ ”“ that the majority of the Communion’s member Churches have not reached the point where they can go along with TEC’s position.

“The Primates’ ”˜consequences’ should not, I believe, be seen as punitive, but as a reflection of the current state of play in the Communion with respect to marriage equality,” he said.
“The same must be true of the current situation in the Church of England,” he said. “Like it or not, those who wish to see our Church change its position have to accept that we have not done so yet. That may be an offence to the Gospel for some of us ”“ and an enormous mission challenge among the under-40s in most of our urban and graduate cultures ”“ but it is the reality.

“We have not yet changed enough minds.”

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