Welcoming and Inclusive
St Edmund’s Church has always been a welcoming and inclusive church. Long before the current debate about gay clergy and women bishops in the church, St Edmund’s just got on with being open, welcoming and affirming.
St Edmund’s has always sought to affirm the ministry of women – supporting the ordination of women to the priesthood. We have been fortunate to have had 3 women priests at St Edmund’s as curates. St Edmund’s is supportive of the move within the Church of England for women to become bishops. Go to the WATCH website for more information.
St Edmund’s Church has also been openly accepting of gay and lesbian people. We are listed as a ‘Welcoming and Open Congregation’ on the website of Changing Attitude (an organisation which works for the full acceptance, welcome and equality of gay people within the Anglican Church). For further information their website is at www.changingattitude.org.uk. The PCC has voted to sign a Declaration of Belief drafted by Inclusive Church. The full text is set out below
A Declaration of Belief
Within the Diocese there is a ‘Listening Group’ that is working to encourage those of different traditions and viewpoints within the church to share together in the listening process that the church has called us to. A website for this group is to be launched soon. Details will be posted here.
There is a gay and lesbian support and social group that regularly meets in Crayford. ‘Haven’ is co-ordinated by Robert Etheridge who is a member of St Edmund’s Church. The current programme for Haven is available here as a download.
Affirming Catholicism has a local group within the diocese. This organisation seeks to be welcoming and affirming of women in ministry and gay and lesbian members within the church
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