EQUAL marriage was praised by a bishop in a debate on whether same-sex marriages should be allowed in church.
Same-sex marriage passed into law in March, but gay weddings in the Church of England are still prohibited.
Bishop of Buckingham the Rt Revd Dr Alan Wilson this week spoke at a debate on the issue at Kidlington’s St John’s Church.
A prominent supporter of gay marriage, he told worshippers at the Broadway church that the Christian tradition holds “the root of marriage is not sex but companionship”.
He said: “The idea that marriage is about friendship has become extremely powerful in England.”
Christians must symbolise “good news”, he said: “One of the really painful things I have had to learn is how the Church can be really bad news to people”.
This can “stir feelings of guilt and lack of self worth”, but he said: “God has made us like that. If he wanted to make us another way he would but he didn’t.”
In a group discussion as part of the event, Stephanie Hobson, 67, of Kidlington, said: “I can’t see any reasons there why there should not be gay marriage, why then are so many people against it?”
Janet Warren, 70, said at Tuesday’s event: “The older you are the more you don’t like change and the idea that the world is changing around you is enough to put you off.”
The event came after a series earlier debates about assisted dying and women bishops.
- Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone's contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.
11:20am Monday 28th July 2014
What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter through the blue headline above.
Our top stories
5:10pm Tuesday 25th November 2014
THE speed limit on a stretch of the A34 will be cut to 50mph for six months to allow drainage work to be carried out.
5:00pm Tuesday 25th November 2014
A MUSCULAR dystrophy sufferer who raised funds in the fight against the disease has died aged 27.
3:21pm Tuesday 25th November 2014
TRAIN services from London Paddington to Oxford are being affected by cancellations and half-hour delays as a result of signalling problems.
12:04pm Tuesday 25th November 2014
Check out what is in our interactive back page today...
8:41am Tuesday 25th November 2014
The traffic lights are not working on the A4144 Abingdon Road at B4495 Weirs Lane.
10:38am Tuesday 25th November 2014
Here's today's interactive front page, with live links to the featured stories and also the latest headlines constantly updated