Archbishop Sentamu Addresses Christian Liberal Group ‘Changing Attitudes’
I am amazed at the insensitivity of the Batesville Daily Guard’s newspaper executive, Arkansas, if a Reuter’s report is accurate!
It makes me wonder how insensitive we can be and for the church, how insensitive we might be when conducting funerals. Locally there is a dreadful man who is anti gay; in fact he is anti many things. He is a priest, though I suspect he has little understanding as to what that actually means. Now this is not a rant at him, it is more a worry expressed. Clergy like this man are not difficult to find, and I have witnessed the dreadfully insensitive behaviour of similarly minded Bishops at General synod in London.
My worry is that when couples are separated by death and the one still here on earth seeks help from the church, either to conduct a funeral service or in other ways, what kind of response is she likely to get?
It is easy to be critical of the Batesville Daily Guard newspaper’s policy towards same sex partnerships when it comes to obituaries, but it might be harder to accept that we may need to guard against insensitivity ourselves as Church.
A friend of mine has twice had close dealings with people with same sex relationships enduring bereavement, and in both cases the partners, one in her twenties, the other in her eighties, were suspicious of the attitude of the church. Reassurances and good pastoral care, and dare I say sound ecclesiological common sense, resulted in good things. However, given the oft voiced disgust of the local priest, I feel somewhat troubled.