400 members of the General Synod of the Church of Ireland will gather this weekend in County Cavan for a conference on homosexuality, but only one of them is officially gay.
According to the programme notes ‘Andrew’ a civil partnered man brought in from France will speak, alongside ‘Jonathan’, brought in from England, who has exited a gay relationship to become Director of a Christian ex-gay Ministry.
Dr Richard O’Leary co-editor of the book Moving Forward Together: Homosexuality and the Church of Ireland and co-founder of Changing Attitude Ireland said that although he welcomed the holding of a conference, he was concerned that there were so few gay speakers and that “no lesbians had been invited as speakers or even as guests.
“The seminar panel on ‘Gays welcome? A Pastoral Reponse’ does not include any gay speakers,” he said. “And no transgender person was invited as a speaker for the seminar on ‘The Science of Gender Determination’.”