Belfast Telegraph

Bishop under fire over cleric's gay marriage

By Alf McCreary

The row over gay clergy in the Church of Ireland shows no signs of abating.

Evangelical groups are now questioning the role of the Bishop of Cashel Michael Burrows in the appointment of Dean Tom Gordon, who entered into a civil partnership in July with his companion of 20 years.

Four groups within the Church have issued another joint statement in which they criticise the bishop.

They claimed: "He is required to promote unity, and might reasonably have been expected to have cautioned Dean Gordon that his proposed actions were divisive and could therefore not have his support.

"Not only has there been a departure from the received teaching of the Church, but both the dean and the bishop have failed in their ecclesiastical obligations."

The editor of the Church of Ireland Gazette Canon Ian Ellis stressed that the repercussions of Dean Gordon's civil partnership "with the prior knowledge of his bishop and without any assurances about a celibate lifestyle, which is the norm in the Church of England", have been sweeping.

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