Tomorrow the letter “Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons” will be released by the Vatican and the Church of England has just released the 138-page document, Being Human.
The Church of England sought to shed its puritanical image on sexual issues yesterday in a report that could pave the way for further liberalisation.
Its Doctrine Commission admits that the Church has “acquired a reputation for being negative about sex”. It should celebrate it as “a wonderful gift from God”.
Pejorative language, such as the phrase “living in sin”, is absent from the report, which instead encourages “covenanted relationships”.
The Rt Rev Stephen Sykes, the commission’s chairman, says that any man and woman who make a lifelong commitment to each other are in such a relationship, whether or not they are married.
However, the Church will still urge such couples to marry, although it increasingly recognises that the institution is far from perfect.
The report says that the Church remains divided on whether homosexual couples can be in such relationships.
Even so, liberals will seize on the 138-page document, Being Human, which has been endorsed by the House of Bishops, to reinforce their arguments that the Church needs to relax its strictures.
This is what happens when you don’t have the living authority of the Church to protect the truth. The Protestant ideas of Sola Fide and Sola Scriptura have broken down to Sola Cultura. While the concept of Sola Scriptura is deeply flawed it is preferable to just looking at the culture around you and priding yourself on being a modern and taking your cues from that. I am sure that the Greek and Roman cultures in decline felt exactly the same way.
It is no surprise that the Church of England which started because of a annulment dispute and subsequent remarriage of the king could degenerate down to this concept of marriage and sex. You would think that they were using a totally different Bible by the doctrines that have resulted. You would believe that by their interpretation of scripture that Jesus’ first public miracle was the cohabitation at Cana. That King Herod Antipas was a hero and that John the Baptist was a judgemental intolerant fool because he didn’t approve of Herod’s “covenanted relationship.” That Jesus only urged people to marry and didn’t have anything to say about sex outside of marriage.
The report said that, given the changes in society’s attitude towards sex and relationships, “a merely nostalgic or conservative reaction is out of the question”. The report also argues that people need ever greater wisdom to deal with modern pressures such as power and money.
How about unchanging moral truth? Oops sorry if I have offended anyone by that statement.