To The Editor, The Guardian,
It is hard to see the justification for the Archbishop of Canterbury's allegation that liberals are to blame for the current rift in the Anglican Communion (The Guardian, 4th August).
Liberals have come to their current conclusions because they have heeded the calls of previous Lambeth Conference resolutions. The crisis is because many traditionalists have refused to do this.
Rather than listen to gay people (Resolutions 1978, 1988 and 1998), the Church has silenced them. The Resolutions in 1978 and 1988 called for deep and dispassionate study 'which would take seriously both the teaching of Scripture and the results of scientific and medical research', yet the Anglican Communion office in London only contacted the Royal College of Psychiatrists for information last year when we personally urged them to do so. Is it any wonder then that some bishops in the Anglican Communion still deny the existence of gay people in their countries?
Liberals study the Scriptures but also recognise that the Scriptures have been used to oppress as well as liberate human beings in the past. And whatever happened to the call to Anglican Provinces to assess human rights in relation to homosexual people? - Gloucester Cathedral's memorial to the victims of the Nazi holocaust includes a remembrance of homosexual people alongside others who were targeted, but the targeting of gay victims continues and the Anglican Communion is silent, and some bishops even support such laws in their countries.
The admission of Gentiles to the church before official permission was granted was a hotly debated dispute in the early Church, but thank God the Archbishop did not chair the meeting in Jerusalem that discussed it - we might not have a Church at all today!
Rev Gillian Cooke and Dr Alan Sheard