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 First UK gay clergy to marry has license revoked by local bishop

First UK gay clergy to marry has license revoked by local bishop

LAST UPDATED // Monday, 23 June 2014 12:13 Written by // Andrew Shaw

The first gay clergy to marry in the UK has had his permission to operate revoked in one local diocese.

Canon Jeremy Pemberton, 58, a hospital chaplain, was the first member of the clergy to enter into a same-sex marriage, when he wed his partner Laurence Cunnington in April, reports the UK’s Pink News.

The Church’s governing body, the House of Bishops, has declared that same-sex marriage between clergy be banned.

It was revealed on Sunday that the Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham, Richard Inwood, has removed Pemberton’s Permission to Officiate, revoking his permission to perform services in the diocese.

Inwood said same-sex marriage was clearly at variance with the teaching of the Church of England.

He added: "It said it would not be appropriate conduct for someone in holy orders to enter into a same sex marriage, given the need for clergy to model the Church's teaching in their lives.

"In view of this I have spoken to Jeremy Pemberton and subsequently written to him to tell him his permission to officiate in the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham has been revoked."

Pemberton holds his licence in the Diocese of Lincoln – which has not yet revoked it – and he is still employed by the NHS as a chaplain.

Though he declined to comment on the matter, Pemberton has since confirmed that reports are “basically accurate”.

Reverend Colin Coward of ‘Changing Attitudes’ said Inwood took the decision following the instructions of the Archbishop of York.

He added: “The Bishop’s action against Jeremy is intolerable. Jeremy and Laurence have married because they love each other and are totally committed to each other.

“Jeremy has a vocation to the priesthood and a particular vocation to hospital chaplaincy.”


Andrew Shaw

Andrew Shaw

Andrew Shaw is editor of Queensland Pride.

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