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Tuesday, 13 June 2017

A sense of proportion

Most of the 32 gay MPs and peers managed to get to the IoS photocall Teri Pengilley/Independent

In February 2016 the Independent published this picture of 28 MPs and peers. It was reported to be the largest number of publicly out parliamentarians photographed together at one time.

On the BBC Breakfast show this morning [advance to 2:13:00] it was reported that there are now 45 LGBT MPs (7%), an increase of 40% since 2015. A record 208 women MPs were elected but they "still make up only 32% of the total number of MPs", the implication being that well short of parity, the latest buzz for women clergy, women are under represented

The Office for National Statistics' bulletin: 'Sexual identity, UK: 2015' shows that in 2015, 1.7% of the UK population identified themselves as lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB) so similarly LGB people are over represented.

The Church of England (CofE) LGBTI network Changing attitude estimates that about 10% of clergy are LGBT, almost six times the national average, indicating a level of influence which has resulted in the CofE softening its stance on LGBT issues.

In 2015 the Telegraph reported that the House of Commons had more gay MPs than any other parliament in the world, up to 32 from 26 in the previous parliament indicating from the latest figure that the trend is upwards. In the CofE there is growing acceptance of same sex marriage with the possibility that the CofE will follow the lead of the Scottish Episcopal Church. In Wales the bench of bishops came out strongly in favour of same sex marriage but were defeated. The two new women bishops are strong LGBT advocates.

As an indication of how little the Bible informs CofE thinking, 'Gay rock star' Vicky Beeching has been given the Thomas Cranmer Award for Worship by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Compare that with the number of former worshippers who have been deprived of the opportunity to worship because their church has left them.

Archbishop Justin Welby has also been 'honoured' in joining Muslims breaking their daily Ramadan fast. No doubt his halal experience will have been convivial. He tweeted: "@JustinWelby at @AlKhoei for a Big Iftar with friends of various faiths. Through hosting an #iftar we find out more we have in common. 10:14 PM - 12 Jun 2017".

There is nothing in common with the orthodox faith of Christians especially in Muslim countries where homosexuals are killed and Christians are slaughtered in countries such as Egypt simply for not being Muslims.

Small wonder that the GAFCON Primates have asked the Anglican Church in North America to take on the task of providing a missionary bishop for Scotland. Long overdue in Wales and now increasingly likely in England on current trends.

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