Protester interrupts high profile sermon by gay Bishop

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A protester has interrupted a sermon by the first openly gay Anglican bishop, the Right Reverend Gene Robinson, Bishop of New Hampshire this evening at St Mary’s church, Putney, South West London.

The Bishop is in the UK for both the première of a documentary For the Bible Tells Me So and  the Lambeth Conference of top Anglican clergy, which he has not been invited to.

During the sermon on fear within the Church the man shouted: “Because of heretics like you”.

He continued: “repent, repent, repent” as his supporters clapped the man down.

After being escorted out of the church by police officers, no action was taken against the protester.

The Bishop told the packed church:”This discussion of homosexuality we are having in the Church is not so significant because of what it says about homosexuality, but of what it says about God.

“When someone stands up and says homosexuality is an abomination, does that make you want to get to know God?”

Adding: “I think God wants us to be bold, I think God wants us to take risks, I don’t think God wants us to be afraid.

“You know, whatever you think makes you unworthy, I don’t think God wants to hear it any more.”

Despite Bishop Robinson being excluded from the crucial Lambeth Conference by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, a quarter of the invited bishops are refusing to attend.

The most high profile being the Bishop of Rochester, Michael Nazir-Ali together with 99 of Nigerian Anglican bishops after their leader, the Bishop of Nigeria, Dr Peter Akinola ordered them to boycott the event.

He claimed recently “There is no longer any hope, for a unified communion”.

Bishop Robinson will attend fringe events at the conference which despite the name is held in Canterbury. He married his partner, Mark Andrew, last month.

Channel 4 News interviewed Gene Robinson and was at the Church during the protest