World

No ‘Straight Answer’ To Whether Gay Sex Is Sin, Says Archbishop Of Canterbury

REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah

Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Joshua Gill Religion Reporter

The Archbishop of Canterbury said Sunday that he could not give a ‘straight answer’ to the question of whether homosexuality is a sin.

Archbishop Justin Welby, leader of the Church of England and symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican Communion, tried to dodge the question of homosexuality with general statements about relationships and faithfulness in a Sunday interview with GQ. The interviewer would not relent, however. He claimed he was questioning Welby on the issue because he felt sorry for former Liberal Democrat party leader Tim Farron, who resigned over pressure surrounding his Christian view of homosexuality.

“You know very well that is a question I can’t give a straight answer to,” Welby told GQ. “Sorry, badly phrased there. I should have thought that one through.”

Welby circled around a “straight answer” for the remainder of the interview and said that he didn’t “do blanket condemnation” and that he did not have a good answer. When prodded on the definition of marriage, Welby simply gave an overview of the controversy over the matter.

“Inherently, within myself, the things that seem to me to be absolutely central are around faithfulness, stability of relationships and loving relationships,” Welby said.

“I am also aware – a view deeply held by tradition since long before Christianity, within the Jewish tradition – that marriage is understood invariably as being between a man and a woman. Or, in various times, a man and several women, if you go back to the Old Testament. I know that the Church around the world is deeply divided on this in some places, including the Anglicans and other Churches, not just us, and we are – the vast majority of the Church is – deeply against gay sex,” Welby added, still refusing to give his view on it.

Welby explained that he struggled to be faithful to tradition and to scripture while also trying to understand how to follow God’s will in this century. Welby did, however, make a careful distinction between disagreement and homophobia, following his admission that the disagreement between African bishops and other Anglican leaders over homosexuality was “irreconcilable.”

“I don’t think it is sinful to say that you disagree with gay sex. But to express that by way of hatred for people is absolutely wrong in the same way as misogyny or racism is wrong.”

Welby then agreed with the interviewer’s accusation that his answer was “morally a cop-out.”

“Yes. I am copping out because I am struggling with the issue,” the leader of the Church of England said.

Follow Joshua on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.