The Shared Conversations: What next?
Why you should write to a bishop now.
Supporters of IC will no doubt all be aware that the two-year programme of Shared Conversations on Sexuality, conducted across all the dioceses of the Church of England came to a conclusion at the recent General Synod meeting in York. Reports from the latter have mostly been fairly positive. But what happens next?
The bishops of the CofE will be meeting several times this autumn to discuss exactly this, and to formulate a plan that will be reported to the General Synod in February 2017. The first meeting will be in the week of 23 September, when the full College of Bishops (i.e. including all the suffragans) will be meeting in Oxford. Now is therefore the ideal time for each of you to write to your local bishop – even if you don’t know them personally, and whatever you may think their own views are – and let him or her know what your hopes are for change in the immediate future. Do tell them about your own experiences, both good and bad. And if you do know more than one bishop personally, do write to all of them. The more letters the better! Don’t underestimate the power of heart-felt letters from the grassroots.
There will be further meetings of the House of Bishops in November and December, and the College will meet again in January. No doubt IC’s partners, LGCM and Changing Attitude, and the LGBTI Mission, will be issuing statements as well, nearer the time of the February synod. But right now, what we need is lots of concerned people to express their individual views.
So please play your part in this.
Simon Sarmiento. IC Trustee