Call for churches and governments to stop attacking LGBTIQ+ people

Equal Voices, the national network of LGBTIQA+ Christians and allies, has called for an end to Church and Government discrimination after Sydney Anglican Archbishop Glenn Davies declared people who support marriage equality should leave the church.

Equal Voices describe the comments by Archbishop Davies as striking examples of the ‘ugly face’ of religiously-based exclusion and harm inflicted on the LGBTIQA+ community.

The group have also drawn attention to the “reactionary gender diversity guidelines” being adopted across the highly extensive Sydney Anglican area.

“These developments have to stop”, said Equal Voices spokesperson the Revd Dr Jo Inkpin. “As both an Anglican priest and a transgender woman, I know only too well the harm that is being done. It is time to choose love not exclusion.”

Equal Voices believes that the federal Government’s proposed religious discrimination legislation gives the green light to such religious actions.

“It is no coincidence”, Dr Inkpin said, “that the Sydney diocese is also in the forefront of pressing for the strengthening of legally discriminatory powers. This week’s call for LGBTIQA+ people and their allies to leave churches is a harbinger of what is to come in our wider communities if Government does not rethink its own actions.”

In an online petition, at change.org, Equal Voices Anglicans express ‘grave dismay’ at the Sydney Archbishop’s statements this week, as “deeply damaging to the mental health and well-being of so many in our society” and a “betrayal of the love and generous hospitality of Jesus.”

They point to the numerous LGBTIQA+ Anglicans now married under Australian law and the impact of labelling such loving relationships as “sinful”, particularly in the light of the extraordinary high levels of mental health challenge among LGBTIQA+ people.

“The encouragement of outdated binary understandings of sexuality and gender”, say Equal Voices Anglicans, “is also hugely damaging, putting lives at risk.”

The group argue that Anglicans were supportive of the decision to allow same-sex marriage and statements by Archbishop Davies show that he is out of touch with the beliefs of his own congregation.

“We ask that those in leadership consider prayerfully the great harm that has been done…and seek ways to redress that harm. We urge that public statements and actions be made by all pastorally aware Anglicans, making clear that LGBTIQA+ Anglicans are welcome and affirmed.” the group said in a statement.

OIP Staff


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