Sexual Orientation and an Anglican Response – An Asian perspective
A pastoral letter: Advent 2020
The Rt. Rev’d Keerthisiri Fernando
Bishop of Kurunagala & Presiding Bishop Church of Ceylon
If we were to think of one aspect of life that has been of immense scrutiny and discussion in the Church it would be human sexuality. The debates and arguments that have raged across the Church contexts have even threatened unity, doctrines, abandonment of faith and the like. The fact that human sexuality has also been expressed in the light of human freedom and liberation has further complicated matters. For examples sex change surgeries, LGBTQ rights, status of same sex couples, transgender realities, etc have manoeuvred the ongoing debate on sexuality into unchartered waters. In the absence of a collective theological response secularism has infiltrated this issue in such a way that it has left the Church wanting of a view addresses these questions.
The Anglican Communion
In the recent past the Anglican Communion has had many discussions, discourses and debates on human sexuality. It is not just for the fact that the Anglican Communion has been immune or affected in this ongoing discussion but rather we ourselves have faced severing of relationships, theological revolutions and even brought the Communion to the brink of a schism. There have been sharp contrasting viewpoints in the Evangelical and Conservative African context against the Western and the Americanised wing of faith affirmation. Amongst our deliberations but not limited to, have been the nature versus nurture debate on homosexuality, the legal status of same sex unions, adoption and related recognition of same sex couples, ordination of and ministerial viewpoints of openly homosexual persons and a unified front on confronting a secular view with a theological response.
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