New world Anglican leader explains policies on homosexuals, women bishops

Posted: Friday, December 06, 2002

LONDON (AP) -- Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, who has acknowledged ordaining a practicing homosexual while serving in Wales, says he probably won't do it again.

He also told the Church Times he sees no theological objection to women bishops, but suggested if any are consecrated in England the church might need a separate jurisdiction for dissenting traditionalists.

The archbishop took office this week as leader of the Church of England and 77 million Anglicans and Episcopalians worldwide.

Anglican bodies in Canada, the United States and New Zealand have women bishops, and that step has been approved in principle by Anglicans elsewhere.

On homosexuality, Williams abstained when a 1998 international conference of Anglican bishops strongly endorsed a resolution that active gay relationships are ''incompatible with Scripture.''

But he said that resolution ''says what the mind of the church is. I feel, in my public position, that I am bound to live with that.''

''If I knew that an ordinand was living with a partner, I would have, at the moment, to say, the church has made its views clear on this, and you have a choice,'' he said.

However, Williams also said ''I think the question is worth asking,'' whether the Bible is properly interpreted as opposing all homosexual behavior, the belief of Roman Catholicism and the majority of Protestant denominations.

Some evangelical Anglicans have sharply criticized Williams over the gay issue.

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http://www.churchtimes.co.uk



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