Category Archives: Civil Partnership

How little did I know – Blogging five years on

FIVE YEARS AGO today I began this blog – little did I know then that: having ‘come out of the church‘ in 2011, I would return to a different church where my husband and I would be accepted, encouraged and authorised as lay leaders (though still with limitations because we are married) little more than a year after our civil… Read more »

#YouAreHere – A pop-up museum of Liverpool LGBT+ History

This week I was proud to be part of the You Are Here LGBT+ history pop-up exhibition at Tate Liverpool.       I loaned the Liverpool Echo report on our civil partnership (the first to be registered in a UK place of worship, at Ullet Road Unitarian Church…     …and the 2014 Being Proud Award for Best LGBT+ Youth… Read more »

A momentous decade – Reflecting on ten years of UK civil partnerships

IT’S TEN YEARS this month since the first civil partnerships for same-sex couples in the UK. The first couple to benefit from the new legal recognition for their relationship were Chris Cramp and Matthew Roche from West Sussex, on 5th December 2005. Yet when images from the first UK civil partnerships appear in the media to accompany stories about same-sex… Read more »

Making noise for #AntiBullyingWeek, #InterfaithWeek, #TDOR

THIS WEEK in England there is an interesting combination of commemorations – Anti-Bullying Week, Interfaith Week, and Trans* Awareness Week, culminating today in Trans* Day of Remembrance (TDOR). I have been at four events in the past week to mark these campaigns: ‘An All Embracing Faith’ – Keynote speech by Ruth Hunt, CEO of Stonewall LGBT rights charity at Liverpool… Read more »

What is a ‘shared conversation’?

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WHAT IS a conversation if it’s not shared? Talking to myself? Enjoying the sound of my own voice? Only hearing views I agree with? This odd phrase was chosen by the Church of England to describe its facilitated listening process to seek some reconciliation, or at least ‘good disagreement’ over diverse views on sexuality and same-sex marriage. Perhaps they meant that,… Read more »

A Coward with courage – challenging the Church, changing our image of God

LAST WEEKEND, director of Changing Attitude Colin Coward came to our church to give a series of reflections inspired by twenty years working towards a more inclusive church around the world. Colin is an Anglican priest who originally trained as an architect and subsequently as a psychotherapist.  He ministered for 19 years in inner-city parishes.  In 1995 he founded Changing… Read more »

A conversation that matters: #OpenChurch2015 conference

Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters. This was the aim of last week’s two-day conference Open Church: The church, sexuality, mission and the future hosted by Steve Chalke, Baptist minister and founder of international charity the Oasis Trust. Steve hit the headlines two years ago when he called for an ‘open conversation’ around same-sex relationships and marriage in response to the… Read more »

LGBT History Month: What’s your story? #LGBTHM15

FEBRUARY is LGBT History Month in the UK – marked every year in the UK since 2004 to remember and celebrate the lives and achievements of LGBT people past and present. It was set up by Sue Sanders, founder of Schools Out, a group for LGBT teachers since 1974. LGBT History Month is a wonderful opportunity to explore the lives of people who… Read more »

2014: A big year for UK marriage equality

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2014 was a big year for marriage equality in the UK. Same-sex marriage is now possible in the United Kingdom, with the exception of Northern Ireland. As marriage law is devolved to the governments of each country in the Union, the status of same-sex marriage is different in England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The UK Parliament in London passed legislation to… Read more »

Diversity Role Models – Challenging prejudice one story at a time

A YEAR AGO I trained as a volunteer with Diversity Role Models, a charity which offers workshops in schools featuring positive LGBT or straight ally role models who speak directly to young people about their experiences, to challenge bullying by promoting empathy. They began in London in 2011 and are now expanding across the UK, including Merseyside where I live and… Read more »