Wales

Gay bishop will not push for same-sex marriage

Cherry Vann Image copyright Church in Wales
Image caption Cherry Vann said she was overwhelmed by the response to her and her partner Wendy

Wales' first bishop in a same-sex civil partnership has said she will not campaign for same-sex marriage in the Church in Wales.

Cherry Vann, who was consecrated as the Bishop of Monmouth on Sunday, said the church still had "a lot of thinking to do" about marriage.

Ms Vann, 60, said she hoped LGBT people would be able to see her appointment as a sign of hope.

She will be enthroned at Newport Cathedral on 1 February.

The Church in Wales does not conduct same sex marriages, but same-sex couples are permitted to be married in places of worship in Wales.

These places, including buildings used by Unitarians, Congregationalists, Particular Baptists, United Reform Church and Christian Spiritualists, must submit a written application to the General Register Office - which maintains the national archive of all births, marriages and deaths - before solemnising same-sex marriages.

Image copyright Church in Wales
Image caption Cherry Vann is a piano and violin graduate at the Royal College of Music

The former Archdeacon of Rochdale said she was overwhelmed by the warm welcome her and her partner Wendy had been given and hoped to send a positive message to people who feel rejected by the church.

"I hope that it is a sign of hope. There are a lot of gay people in our schools, in our colleges and universities, out there in society who think that the church is against them, that they don't have a place in the church," she said.

"I hope that being here as a gay person, in a same-sex relationship, will give those people hope and help them to see that this is something that the church embraces and is able to celebrate along with any other faithful committed relationship.

"I hope that people are not disappointed... I can see that some might be hoping that I might be more of a campaigner for the cause, but I am here as a bishop with a job to do."

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