Forward in Faith naturally welcomes any statement supporting a traditional Christian understanding of marriage, but we would have wished for more robust words from the Bishops. The problems occur not because of the sexual orientation of individuals but because of the inherent (and deliberate) dishonesty of the Civil Partnerships Act. This is a faulty piece of legislation, not because it extends rights in law, but because it does so in a manner designed to undermine the institution of marriage. Bishops as members of the House of Lords, where this Act originated, had a duty to condemn the manner in which it does this.
The Act says absolutely nothing explicitly about sexual activity in a Civil Partnership; instead it creates a climate implicitly
by the complexity of its provisions. It is this fundamental dishonesty that should be roundly condemned. The long discussion in the Bishops’ statement about sexual activity and previous Church of England declarations on the matter diverts attention towards the private life of individuals and thus colludes with the government’s subterfuge.
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