Michael Gove Justin Welby

The Michael Gove interview of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is causing a bit of a stir, mainly because of the following:

Few questions have so preoccupied the Anglican communion recently as the morality of sexuality — homosexuality in particular. Traditional Anglicans — whether in Nigeria or Nottingham — have been wary, at best, of the acceptance and welcome given to gay men and women and their sexual choices by secular society. It would be a challenge for any Archbishop of Canterbury to accommodate both the concerns of the traditionalists and the evolving views of the rest of British society. But when I ask this, Archbishop of Canterbury he doesn’t prevaricate.

If one of his own children were to be gay and fell in love with another person of the same sex, and asked his blessing, how would he react? ‘Would I pray for them together? You bet I would, absolutely. Would I pray with them together? If they wanted me to. If they had a civil service of marriage, would I attend? Of course I would.’

But, I challenged him, conscious of what many evangelicals believe, wouldn’t you say to them that while you love them, their relationship was sinful or inappropriate?

‘I would say, “I will always love you, full stop. End of sentence, end of paragraph.” Whatever they say, I will say I always love them.’

Why might this surprise people? Shock people? Is this not what one would expect from any loving parent?

And if God as a loving father, loving parent, is a primary (some will say God-given) image, is that not what we would expect from God? From Jesus?

If we ask God, if we ask Jesus, questions like:

If one of your own children were to be gay and fell in love with another person of the same sex, and asked your blessing, how would he react? Would you pray for them together? Would you pray with them together? If they had a service of marriage, would you be present?

do you think the Archbishop of Canterbury is more loving than God, than Jesus?

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image source: PA/Getty Images

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