Bermuda church denies “gay bashing” plans

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A church conference in Bermuda has promised to steer clear of “gay bashing.”

Churches in Bermuda were planning to boycott a multi denominational service on human rights because they fear it may unfairly target homosexuality.

A third of churches believe the service, organised by United By Faith, will preach that the Human Rights Act should not protect sexual orientation.

The meeting, involving around 70 per cent of the island’s churches, next Saturday will discuss gang violence, human rights and the role of the church,

Organiser Andre Curtis has immediately denied that their will be any unfair targeting of people, he told the Royal Gazette: “There will be no gay bashing and no-one is being unfairly targeted.”

All of the churches on the British territory were invited, but the Anglican Church declined the invitation saying it was inappropriate.

The Bishop of Bermuda, Reverend Ewan Ratteray wrote in a letter, “Part of the agenda for this service seems to be to target particular members of our society, homosexuals, in a way that is deemed to be inappropriate.”

Mr Curtis says he is disappointed the clergyman will not attend the event to see for himself, he said: “The Bishop has been invited to the meetings that are being held for the service and chosen not to attend. Had he attended, he would be fully aware there will be no gay bashing and that no-one is being unfairly targeted. He is unfortunately speculating and not speaking from an informed position.”

The meeting comes after government backbencher Renee Webb tried have sexual orientation added to the anti-discrimination clause in the Human Rights Act, the move was defeated in Parliament and was opposed by the church.

Ms Webb expressed delight that the meeting was being boycotted, she the Royal Gazette: “I am pleased to note that there are religious leaders who understand the importance of promoting equality in our society and that to target the homosexual is not only unconscionable, it is tragic, particularly when it would appear that the homosexual is being targeted while liars, cheaters and adulterers, all of whom attend churches up and down this country are being ignored.”