- Written by Jonathan Clatworthy Jonathan Clatworthy
- Published: 07 April 2014 07 April 2014
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One of the most respected scholarly journals in the religious world is presenting a positive case for gay marriages and same-sex partnerships.
Amid controversy in church and society, marriage equality is taking effect not only in Britain but in many parts of the world. The latest issue of Modern Believing offers an in-depth exploration of the theological questions raised.
The launch: Tuesday 13 May at 6pm (refreshments 5.45pm)
at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, 235 Shaftesbury Ave, London WC2H 8EP.
Among the speakers will be the contributors Savitri Hensman and Christina Beardsley.
Entry is free but prior booking is required. Book here.
is the April issue of Modern Believing. This issue is guest-edited by Savitri Hensman, an Ekklesia associate, and contains six articles by theologians presenting a positive response to the growing public acceptance of same-sex partnerships.
Savitri Hensman describes how thinking about same-sex partnerships and marriage in the Church of England and other churches has developed over the past century. This is set within a wider context of debate among biblical scholars, changing perspectives on sexuality and gender and conflict within religious institutions and communities.
Marriage is an ascetic practice for same-sex and well as opposite-sex couples, in which ‘life with another can prepare us for life in Trinity’, writes Eugene F Rogers, professor of religious studies at the University of North Carolina, re-examining relevant biblical passages.
The late Kenneth Ingram was one of the first Anglican theologians to argue for a consistent approach to opposite-sex and same-sex partnerships. His writings on Christianity and sexual ethics seventy years ago are revisited.
The current state of scientific knowledge about sexual orientation is summarised by David G Myers, professor of psychology at Hope College, Holland, Michigan.
Charlotte Methuen, senior lecturer in church history at the University of Glasgow, points out that cultural context ‘has caused Christian views on marriage to shift and change throughout the church’s history.’ In her view, extending the definition to include same-sex couples may offer wider benefits, ‘enabling the institution of marriage to transcend the profound inequalities which have too often shaped it.’
Love can be a ‘many gendered thing’, suggests Dr Christina Beardsley, looking at the realities of transsexual and transgender people’s lives and questioning inflexible concepts of differences between men and women.