Senior Tory claims gay clergy will ‘weaken’ Church of Scotland

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A senior Tory MSP has claimed allowing congregations the discretion to appoint ministers in same-sex relationships “ultimately” weakens the Church of Scotland.

The Church of Scotland is incredibly close to securing a majority in favour of accepting gay clergy.

It currently bans the ordination of ministers in same-sex relationships.

However, 21 of 46 presbyteries have so far voted in favour of a controversial “mixed economy” policy that would give congregations the freedom to appoint a gay man or woman if they wished.

Aberdeen Press and Journal reports MSP Alex Johnstone, Shadow Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Climate Change, said the compromise went against the principles on the Church.

Mr Johnstone, an elder at Glenbervie Parish Church in Aberdeenshire, said the Church had been “indecisive” and had to ensure that the mixed economy proposal was consistent with its theological position.

“Churches compromising to keep people happy is diametrically opposed to the principals on which they are founded,” he added.

“Ultimately the consequence of compromise in this area will further weaken the institution.”