Gay bishop calls Sydney diocese ‘bigoted’

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The only openly gay Anglican bishop Gene Robinson has spoken out against the Archbishopric of Sydney.

Robinson, bishop of New Hampshire, accused Archbishop Dr Peter Jensen and his diocese of intolerance in an interview with Australian magazine SX.

‘It is ironic that the Sydney Diocese, taking in one of the great gay cities of the world, is also among the most bigoted.’ Robinson said.

Robinson was not invited to the Lambeth conference this year.

Archbishop Jensen was one of 200 bishops who boycotted the conference due to their conservative views on homosexuality within the church.

Jensen instead attended an event called the Global Anglican Future Conference.

In response to questions from SX, Jensen said that he did not attend the once-a-decade Lambeth conference for reasons involving ‘matters of conscience and pastoral concern, matters which the Archbishop of Canterbury said he fully understood and appreciated.

‘In a sense, the attendance or non-attendance of Gene Robinson was beside the point.

‘The problem was the attendance of those who had consecrated him.’

Bishop Robinson’s ordination in 2003 marked the beginning of one of the most damaging arguments in Anglican history.

He is unrepentant about the split, claiming that the Bible is open to interpretation and that fundamentalist positions on the place of gays in the church will one day be viewed as morally wrong.

‘Those who claim to make a plain reading of scriptures are actually interpreting it as well. We all interpret scripture,’ he told The Scotsman.

‘It was not very long ago, about 150 years, we were still using scripture to justify slavery, and we came to understand that it was not God’s will.’