UK: Minister bids to stop Church of Scotland’s gay clergy plans

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A Church of Scotland minister has submitted a motion which aims to destroy plans to allow gay ministers.

The Church of Scotland is holding its General Assembly this week, where it had been expected to further controversial plans to allow gay clergy in the church.

Compromise plans to allow some gay ministers, agreed by the Assembly last year, were expected to be passed next Tuesday.

However, according to the Edinburgh Evening News, a motion submitted by Reverend Jeremy Middleton of Davidson’s Mains Parish Church, and backed by evangelicals, could wreck the discussion entirely.

If passed, it will declare that heterosexual marriage is the only acceptable context for sex, and state that all church policy must reflect that view, and would effectively ban all gay ministers from the church.

The issue has been incredibly divisive for the Church of Scotland, and last month half of the High Church voted to leave the Church of Scotland entirely.

Several other churches have split away from the Kirk over the plans, including St Catherine’s Argyle, in the Grange, and New Restalrig in Willowbrae in the past month.

However, an insider told the newspaper: “This is not an issue for most congregations. In the past year we have had five ministers leave, giving this as the reason.

“Overall we have lost 13 ministers since 2009. That’s less than two per cent of our ministers.”