Ian McKellen to Join Gay Bishop Gene Robinson at Anglican Confab


Openly gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson tells The Guardian: “I wish people could see me for a bishop. It is tiring, I must say. On the one hand I would like to be known as Bishop Gene Robinson but it’s an accident of history that I’m the first openly gay bishop in the Anglican communion. I’ve learned to live with that.”

MckellenThe paper reports that although Robinson has been shut out of the annual Anglican Lambeth conference, he’s still going and will likely be the conference’s star attraction. Robinson has events planned, one of which is a reading by Sir Ian McKellen.

Robinson, whose openness about his sexuality has divided the Anglican church, is the only bishop out of 880 to be disinvited from the conference.

“His official exclusion came as a blow to Robinson, who told a spring gathering of the US Episcopal church house of bishops that he felt abandoned by Williams. He wept during the address. “It was the hardest time I’ve had since my consecration,” he said, driving along interstate 93. He suggested it was not his consecration or homosexuality that was tearing apart the Anglican communion, but a failure of the leadership. ‘I don’t know if it was Rowan’s intention to divide the US house of bishops but he’s done the very thing he was trying to avoid through his action or lack of action. It mystifies me that he has never commented on statements Akinola [the Archbishop of Nigeria] has made about homosexuality,’ he said.”

Robinson is publishing a book this summer called In the Eye of the Storm and says that he’s also going to be in GQ: “I am probably the only bishop to feature in a 10,000-word article. I was expecting Armani and George Clooney but they wanted me to wear my robes.”

Gay bishop’s mission to unite [the guardian]


  1. Wes says

    Brilliant. McKellen will steal the show!

    And I bet many people there probably don’t even know he’s gay. So many people just think he’s that great actor from LOTR and X-Men (even though he’s had such an extensive, impressive career) and have no idea he’s gay.

    McKellen is one of those people I’ve heard even homophobic people say they like. They can’t help but respect the guy. And no one can help but admit he’s a fantastic actor. One of the best ever.

  2. Carter says

    I think The Right Reverend would prefer to be called “Bishop Gene Robinson” instead of “Gay Bishop Gene Robinson”. As an Episcopalian, I know I would prefer it.

  3. Clint says

    I agree with Carter that just plain ol’ “Bishop Gene Robinson” is preferable. And at Lambeth, Bishop Robinson is the one who will steal the show! The Archbishop through his actions is directly responsible for that, whether he wanted it that way or not. Though I guess stealing the show won’t be hard with Sir Ian in tow, what a fabulous occasion that will be.

  4. John says

    Rowan Williams have been a serious dissapointment as Archbishop of Cantebury. His endorsement of sharia law. His refusal to talk about women’s issues. His incessant claims that Canada and the United States are causing “pain” and “disunity” in the communion, when in fact other provinces are interfering in ***their*** internal affairs.

    To bad we can’t replace him with Desmond Tutu (one of the few Anglican Primates who’ve had the balls to stand upto the reprehensible gay-baiting of Akinola). It probably helps that he’s a Nobel Peace prize winner. But still, why are the Western archbishops – who are supposedly more “open-minded” – such cowardly losers when it comes to the thugs in Uganda and Nigeria?