In a bold move, the Diocese of Chichester, which covers both East and West Sussex, are to appoint a LGBT Liaison officer.
The announcement was made last month, by the Bishop of Chichester, The Right Reverend Dr Martin Warner at a dinner at St Michaels Church, Brighton.
The dinner was organised by the Diocese of Chichester who had extended invitations to representatives from LGBT organisations of all faiths across the city and among others, Peter Kyle, the MP for Hove & Portslade.
The dinner was arranged to establish a dialogue with the city’s LGBT communities and the Bishop used the opportunity to announce the creation of the new post of LGBT liaison officer for the Diocese.
The Bishop’s opening words set the tone for evening when he asked the question: “Why are we here?” “It’s all about love not structures” he said, and went on to make a case for building trust, understanding and love for each other, maintaining it was better to sit down and talk rather than just “follow the rules”.
Importantly he added: “My view is that LGBT people are part of the Church and I believe their presence enriches every Diocese and everyone has by right a place.”
He went on to say: “It is my hope that the Church as an institution must never present ourselves as implacable. Incapable of recognising tenderness and love.”
And finished saying: “I am privileged to be taking food with you”.