Manchester bishop praises female clergy move – but calls for greater LGBT acceptance

The introduction of female bishops has been praised by Manchester’s church leader  and he has called for the greater acceptance of the LGBT community.

Bishop David Walker spoke positively about the progress the church has made on introducing women into the fold and claims that he believes that the church should be firmly ‘on the right side of history’.

The religious spokesperson made his comments ahead of a series of events to mark the 50th anniversary of Manchester’s gay rights movements.

The Bishop told the Lesbian & Gay Foundation (LGF): “The Church of England often takes a long time to make changes.

“But it is important, especially for young people that the church is seen to have an evolving view on issues of sexual orientation and gender identity and to come to a point of understanding so that we may be reflective of the issues that those in our communities are facing.

“We have to re-think our past views on sexuality and make sure that we give good news to all LGBT people and to younger generations.

“Also, now that we have approval for women bishops it has been shown that the Church of England can have these debates and come out on the right side of equality.”

The 12th bishop of Manchester is acknowledging the city’s long history of supporting the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans community by taking part in two special events this October.

Bishop Walker is picking up the legacy of Nigel McCulloch and his predecessor in the role did much to bring together the Church of England in Manchester and supported local LGBT communities.

He said: “I’m the bishop for the whole of Manchester and I’m someone with whom the LGBT community can feel safe and secure.

“Manchester is a very diverse city and this is a strength that enables us to be a better church and fulfil the city as being a better place for all.

“We have to reach out to different communities. It’s important to bring together some of the more disparate groups into some of the more long standing organisations to stop any widening gulf. The make-up of Manchester is ever-changing, as is the LGBT community.”

Image courtesy of Manchester Climate Monthly via YouTube with thanks

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