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From the Rt. Rev. Jack Leo Iker


June 10, 2003


A statement from the Bishop of Fort Worth
on the election of a gay bishop
in the Diocese of New Hampshire


 

The unity and mission of the Episcopal Church and of the worldwide Anglican Communion have been dealt a crushing blow by Saturday's election of the Rev. Canon Gene Robinson to become the next Bishop of the Diocese of New Hampshire. It is a flagrant violation of the teaching of the Church on matters of human sexuality and is in direct contradiction to the expressed mind of the Bishops of the Anglican Communion that homosexual practice is incompatible with Scripture.

A Bishop is elected on behalf of the whole Church, not just one particular Diocese. Whether or not Canon Robinson's election receives the consent of the next General Convention, there is no way that he is capable of serving as a Bishop for the whole Church. His ministry as a Bishop would be a focus of disunity and division, not a sign of unity. His example of living in a sexual relationship with another man is not faithful to the received teaching of the Church, but is a radical departure from it. His election has brought pain and embarrassment to the Episcopal Church.

I am grieved that the Diocese of New Hampshire has "thumbed its nose" at the rest of the Church. His election will not receive the consent of the Diocese of Fort Worth. If he is successful in seeking to be consecrated, he will not be permitted to exercise any ministry in this Diocese.

 

The Rt. Rev. Jack Leo Iker
Bishop of Fort Worth