Anglicans bar same-sex spouses from Lambeth Conference

Archbishop Of Canterbury Justin Welby

The Anglican Communion has barred spouses of gay bishops from attending its next Lambeth Conference.

The global Anglican church is facing an increasingly fractious split between liberal Western churches who embrace LGBT+ people, and a faction of hardline African churches who do not.

A once-a-decade meeting of Anglican church leaders, the Lambeth Conference, is set to go ahead next year, despite fears that anti-LGBT church leaders will choose to boycott the event.

As part of a compromise measure intended to quell dissent, Anglican leaders this week barred religious leaders from pro-LGBT churches from bringing same-sex spouses to the event, although opposite-sex spouses are allowed.

Anglican Communion claims it would be ‘inappropriate’ to invite same-sex spouses

Dr Josiah Idowu-Fearon, secretary-general of the Anglican Communion, claimed in a blog post that the decision was made “to take account of the Anglican Communion’s position on marriage, which is that it is the lifelong union of a man and a woman.”

He added: “It would be inappropriate for same-sex spouses to be invited to the conference.

“The Archbishop of Canterbury has had a series of private conversations by phone or by exchanges of letter with the few individuals to whom this applies.”

Anglican Communion: Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby (Leon Neal/Getty)

Canon Jeremy Pemberton, who was the first Church of England priest to marry a same-sex partner, highlighted the “hypocrisy” of the decision to exclude same-sex partners.

Speaking to The Times, he said: “They will be no doubt be inviting all sorts of spouses of bishops who have been married before or remarried once, twice or several times, so it is the usual hypocrisy from the Church of England and the Anglican Communion.

“There is no sense to it. The basic problem is they don’t understand hospitality.

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