Anglican church | Gay Marriage | Great Britain | Religion

Bishop Sentamu's Friendly Bigotry

Picture 29England's second most senior cleric, the Archbishop of York Dr. John Sentamu, has declared his opposition to same-sex marriage. No surprise there. What's surprising is the polite way in which Dr. Semantu expresses his concern. From the Beeb:

Dr Sentamu pointed out that bishops in the House of Lords did not seek to obstruct the introduction of civil partnerships between same-sex couples in 2004.

"We supported civil partnerships because we believe that friendships are good for everybody."

He said the Church also had no opposition to plans to allow civil partnership ceremonies to take place in places of worship, if agreed by the religious denomination in question.

... He said: "If you genuinely would like the registration of civil partnerships to happen in a more general way, most people will say they can see the drift. But if you begin to call those marriage, you're trying to change the English language.

"That does not mean you diminish, condemn, criticise, patronise any same-sex relationships because that is not what the debate is about," added Dr Sentamu.

So the opposition's about language. And religious freedom. Which isn't to say Dr. Sentamu doesn't feel passionate about it. According to the Telegraph, the Archbishop ...

... says the Government would face a rebellion on any changes in [marriage] legislation. His intervention may serve as a rallying cry for traditionalist Tories who oppose Mr Cameron’s plan.

“The rebellion is going to come not only from the bishops,” he says. “You’re going to get it from across the benches and in the Commons."

... “Marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman,” says Dr Sentamu. “I don’t think it is the role of the state to define what marriage is. It is set in tradition and history and you can’t just [change it] overnight, no matter how powerful you are.

Unless, perhaps, you're King Henry VIII?

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  1. So here we have a toothless African presuming to tell native Britons what they can and cannot do in their own country and that of their ancestors.

    Just how deeply sick can Europe become?

    Economic collapse (a report just yesterday that half of all Spaniards between 18 and 24 are unemployed), birth rates so low that the white race may be facing extinction in two generations.....and clowns like this from the most backwards precincts of the Third World preying like vultures on the dying beast and being given license to do so by white people who have become so pathetically hyper-sensitive to charges of "racism" that they will let him get away with it.

    Posted by: Rick | Jan 28, 2012 11:52:46 AM

  2. Odd that a bishop in a church created by a king who wanted to change the definition of marriage would find a problem with this. The definition of "marriage" has changed and morphed many times over the centuries and only a fool would deny that. Personally, I don't give a rat's ass what the anglican church thinks about it. They, like their roman catholic colleagues, have succeeded admirably in making themselves irrelevant.

    Posted by: Alex Parrish | Jan 28, 2012 12:09:52 PM

  3. So to recap, a man whose family at some point in their history CHOSE to switch from their native religion to the Christian religion imposed by missionaries (possibly by force or in exchange for "charity"), now wants to again impose those religious values on CIVIL law.

    Cram it, Churchie!

    Posted by: Caliban | Jan 28, 2012 12:31:03 PM

  4. @ Rick. It's clear to us all that you are a racist troll. It's highly unlikely that it will ever get better for you, so feel free to run that razor blade up and down your wrist at your earliest convenience.

    @ Brandon. John Sentamu is a bigot and there is nothing polite about it. He is content for civil partnerships (read unions) to be legislated for, because clearly for him, civil partnerships are about friendship, not marriage. They are a bone thrown to LGBT dogs. Civil partnerships are self-evidently not the same as marriage and unworthy of the same respect. Homosexuals are to be pitied and are deserving of charity. They are not to be accorded equality whether in church (Jeffrey John) or outside it. His view is a right wing Anglican view of homosexuality not dissimilar to that of the Roman Catholic view of homosexuality as fundamentally disordered.

    That John Sentamu is a better communicator than Timothy Dolan should fool no-one. Just as Dolan is a bigot, so is Sentamu.

    And clearly, as you alluded to, Sentamu appears to have forgotten that the Chuch of England separated from Rome over a state definition of marriage law, so that Henry VIII could divorce Catherine of Aragon and marry Anne Boleyn.

    A bigot and a poor historian. Not unlike one of the GOP presidential candidates.

    Posted by: James UK | Jan 28, 2012 12:48:50 PM

  5. "F*ck you" is still "f*ck you", even when it's said in the nicest way.

    Posted by: Stuffed Animal | Jan 28, 2012 1:04:49 PM

  6. Matrimony is the religious bit, do the religionists say "holy marriage" or "holy matrimony" when they conduct a wedding? Marriage is, and always was, a civil contract.

    Posted by: S.C. | Jan 28, 2012 1:20:41 PM

  7. Whoa, you could drive a small train through those babies.

    Posted by: CarlottaVonFunkenhowzer | Jan 28, 2012 1:21:40 PM

  8. Given that he looks like Andree Leon Talley in that get up, I don't think he has a whole lot of room to lob judgement at gay people.

    Posted by: peterparker | Jan 28, 2012 1:50:57 PM

  9. I agree with STUFFED ANIMAL that "F*ck you" is still "F*ck you" regardless of how polite.

    I've see the same sentiment in action in the south. They'll be all sugar and nice with a smile...but say the nastiest things with a little 'upswing' in their voice at the end....and it comes off so sweetly awful. I guess hatred and bigotry is always the same.

    Posted by: Geoff M | Jan 28, 2012 1:53:28 PM

  10. “I don’t think it is the role of the state to define what marriage is."

    Alrighty then, but the state can't sanction what it can't define. So, I guess he's arguing for the state to get out of the marriage business and leave it to the churches. No prob. There are LOTS of churches out there, and these days anyone can start one to suit their needs just like old Henry did.

    Posted by: Jacques | Jan 28, 2012 2:09:09 PM

  11. Andre Leon Talley could give Miss Thing a TON of sartorial advice. That frock looks like a repainted Key West boat house.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Jan 28, 2012 2:16:10 PM

  12. If Pat Buchanan was gay, he'd be Rick.

    Posted by: Hank | Jan 28, 2012 2:17:00 PM

  13. @ David Ehrenstein:

    "A repainted Key West boathouse"....ha ha ha .....that's the only laugh I've had all day !!!!

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Jan 28, 2012 2:20:50 PM

  14. Dig the gown.

    Posted by: Girl Please Stop! | Jan 28, 2012 2:37:50 PM

  15. "... says the Government would face a rebellion on any changes in [marriage] legislation."

    He's absolutely right - the rebellions have carried on non-stop in Canada for the five years since marriage equality was legislated. Angry Anglican priests caused the Stanley Cup riots in Vancouver, flipping over and igniting police cars. It's not safe to go out at night with vigilante heteros facing off against married lesbians. It's not too late for the Brits to avoid rebellion.

    Posted by: Hue-Man | Jan 28, 2012 2:51:41 PM

  16. Christopher Hitchens said it best:

    Posted by: Mike | Jan 28, 2012 2:55:54 PM

  17. Yes, I agree with Christopher Hitchens.

    Posted by: Joel | Jan 28, 2012 3:01:26 PM

  18. .......the "changing the English language" thing is hilarious. and then kinda sad because you know legions of utter plebes will say "hey, ya! the gays is changing OUR LANGUAGE!"

    what a world.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Jan 28, 2012 3:16:28 PM

  19. @ James UK: The headline is obviously meant to be ironic to make the point that -- even dressed up in sweet talk -- bigotry is still bigotry, so maybe cut Brandon some slack. But regarding Rick, I agree with you 100% ... he's a racist troll.

    Posted by: atlanta guy | Jan 28, 2012 3:28:28 PM

  20. It is the role of the state to tell the state church what to do. That was the reason for creating the state church in the first place.

    Posted by: Dallas | Jan 28, 2012 4:09:21 PM

  21. "That frock looks like a repainted Key West boat house." ROFLMAO This is why I read this site!

    Posted by: atomic | Jan 28, 2012 4:31:31 PM

  22. Merci!

    Re.Hitchens. Religion never believed it had God on its side. What it had was Power -- whcih it used ruthelssly to murder and subjugate. Today its' fading fast.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Jan 28, 2012 5:51:16 PM

  23. For eight hundred years the Church refused to have anything to do with marriage. There was no liturgy which dealt with marriage. Obviously, the Church accepted the state's definition of marriage then.

    For the the past 150 years or so, marriage has once again been, in England, an entirely civil matter (albeit with sometimes elaborate religious services obscuring this fact).

    Marriages are simply civil unions - so why are we now saddled with two classes of civil unions? Time to grow up!

    Posted by: Ausländer | Jan 28, 2012 6:23:15 PM

  24. Sentamu is an idiot plain and simple. I've never heard him open his mouth in public without him making a FacePalm Sunday out of it.

    Posted by: MikeW | Jan 28, 2012 6:59:52 PM

  25. Myself and billions of other English-speakers, call the middle of the week "Wednesday."

    This doesn't mean I am a Pagan, celebrating "Woden's Day" every seven days.

    The religionists shouldn't have the monopoly on words, phrases or common parlance.

    Posted by: Justin | Jan 28, 2012 7:42:28 PM

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