Gay bishop, Gene Robinson, announces divorce from husband
Former US bishop Gene Robinson, who first came out in 1986 and whose election as Bishop in 2003 caused many Episcopalians to split from the Anglican church, has announced he will be divorcing his partner of 25 years.
The 66-year old openly gay bishop retired in 2010 but remained a symbol of hope for many gay Christians. Robinson made the announcement of his pending divorce in an article in the The Daily Beast.
Robinson entered a civil partnership with Mark Andrew in 2008, and married in 2010. Speaking of his divorce he said: “Recently, my partner and husband of 25-plus years and I decided to get divorced.
“While the details of our situation will remain appropriately private, I am seeking to be as open and honest in the midst of this decision as I have been in other dramatic moments of my life – coming out in 1986, falling in love, and accepting the challenge of becoming Christendom’s first openly gay priest to be elected a bishop in the historic succession of bishops stretching back to the apostles.”
He added: “It is at least a small comfort to me, as a gay rights and marriage equality advocate, to know that like any marriage, gay and lesbian couples are subject to the same complications and hardships that afflict marriages between heterosexual couples.”
Robinson and Andrew both wore bullet-proof vests at his consecration ceremony in 2003, having been the subject of death threats. His appointment as Bishop was the subject of worldwide debate.