Who we are

Right, here is a little verbatim to get you thinking.

The scene is a concert given by a famous jazz musician a few weeks ago in an American cathedral. I’ve been nudged to the front to sit with the bigwigs. As we sit waiting for the music, I hear this conversation going on somewhere behind me.

Person 1: Wow, isn’t this space amazing. I never knew it was so beautiful.

Person 2: I know, I’ve never been in here before either.

Person 1: What is it anyway? What kind of church?

Person 2: It is the Episcopals

Person 1: Well, it is really special, the building and all. Which ones are the Episcopals again? Are they the ones that have divorce?

Person 2: Yes, they do. And women priests. They’ve got one here!

Person 1: Really? Wow! All this, and divorce and women priests. Maybe I should give them a try…

Now, how does that exchange make you feel? Does it lift the soul or not?  Can you flesh out your feelings with some further thoughts?

Are there any gay friendly Episcopal churches in Edinburgh?

Someone said something to me earlier this week which quite shocked me. They said there was no Episcopal congregation in Edinburgh which was welcoming to LGBT people.

By this, they did not mean that there was an absence of any Episcopal congregations with happy gay people in them. That is clearly not so. The question is, is there any such church which says publicly either by saying so on its website or its literature that LGBT people are welcome or which runs an LGBT group or equivalent which it advertises?

Before we all get ourselves in a tiz saying, “Oh, my church welcomes everyone, we say we welcome everyone therefore we must by definition welcome gay people…” just think it through. You don’t have to spend very long in the company of any group of gay people before you hear someone express the view that they’ve been negatively treated by some church or religious body or another. Also, though churches say that everyone is welcomed, it doesn’t stop them welcoming people explicitly who are for example, students, men, children, fabulous sopranos etc. Saying you welcome everyone is wonderful and I’m sure that lots do. Actually saying you welcome LGBT folk is quite another thing and appears to be considerably more rare.

Anyone want to make nominations.