Bluebells Bluebells

A Statement from 44 Bishops on Living in Love and Faith

2 November 2023

Bishop Guli, Bishop Lynne and Bishop Roger have joined 41 other Church of England bishops in signing a statement on Living in Love and Faith.

The Statement Reads as follows:

We write to reaffirm our commitment to the Living in Love and Faith process in light of the motion passed at General Synod in February this year, by which the General Synod agreed to lament and repent of the failure of the Church to be welcoming to LGBTQIA+ people, commended our continued learning together and looked forward to the House of Bishops further refining, commending and issuing the Prayers of Love and Faith, such that the final version should not be contrary to or indicative of a departure from the doctrine of the Church of England.

We are writing this statement following the publication of the paper GS2328 ahead of the November General Synod. We wish to convey something more of our commitment as members of the House and the College, firmly set within our calling as bishops to be ‘shepherds of Christ’s flock and guardians of the faith of the apostles, proclaiming the gospel of God’s kingdom and leading God’s people in mission.’

We rejoice that we have agreed to commend the Prayers of Love and Faith, and warmly support their use. Many of us regret that the authorisation of the separate Service Structures and Sample Services has been delayed, and we will work within agreed processes to secure that authorisation as soon as possible.

We recognise the complexities of the Pastoral Guidance in relation to ministry, and also the need for a swift end to the current uncertainty for LGBTQIA+ clergy and ordinands. We look forward to Guidance being issued without delay that includes the removal of all restrictions on clergy entering same-sex civil marriages, and on bishops ordaining and licensing such clergy, as well as granting permissions to officiate.

We are seeking together to make pastoral provision in a time of uncertainty, deeply aware that this direction of travel, which has been the increasingly pastoral and inclusive response of many in the Church of England over many years, is not accepted by some of our brother and sister bishops, clergy and laity in the Church. As members together of the Body of Christ we are all summoned to witness to God’s love and to work for the coming of God’s kingdom, serving Christ together within the Church, and for the sake of God’s world, committed to living and sharing the gospel of Christ. We know that we will not all agree, but it is our longing that we will find a way that will recognise and honour our different perspectives and the gift we are to each other within the life of the Church of England, such that no one is expected to act against their conscience or theological conviction.

In all of this we long for the day when LGBTQIA+ people will know themselves to be unquestionably included in the life and all ministries of our Church, and the contributions of each one of us fully accepted and celebrated as simply the offering of a fellow Christian. The Lord calls us all to serve and to witness to the God in whose image each of us is made and it is through God’s grace we are all called, together, ‘to maturity, to the measure of the full stature of Christ’ (Eph. 4.13).


The Bishop of Aston and Acting Bishop of Birmingham, Anne Hollinghurst
The Bishop of Barking, Lynne Cullens
The Bishop of Bedford, Richard Atkinson
The Bishop of Birkenhead, Julie Conalty
The Bishop of Bristol, Vivienne Faull
The Bishop of Buckingham, Alan Wilson
The Bishop of Chelmsford, Guli Francis-Dehqani
The Bishop of Colchester, Roger Morris
The Bishop of Crediton and Acting Bishop of Exeter, Jackie Searle
The Bishop of Croydon, Rosemarie Mallett
The Bishop of Derby, Libby Lane
The Bishop of Dorchester, Gavin Collins
The Bishop of Dudley, Martin Gorick
The Bishop of Dunwich, Mike Harrison
The Bishop in Europe, David Hamid
The Bishop of Gloucester, Rachel Treweek
The Bishop of Grantham, Nicholas Chamberlain
The Bishop of Huddersfield, Smitha Prasadam
The Bishop of Huntingdon and Acting Bishop of Ely, Dagmar Winter
The Bishop of Lincoln, Stephen Conway
The Bishop of Lichfield, Michael Ipgrave
The Bishop of Liverpool, John Perumbalath
The Bishop of Lynn, Jane Steen
The Bishop of Kingston, Martin Gainsborough
The Bishop of Kirkstall, Arun Arora
The Bishop of Manchester, David Walker
The Bishop of Middleton, Mark Davies
The Bishop of Norwich, Graham Usher
The Bishop of Oxford, Steven Croft
The Bishop of Portsmouth, Jonathan Frost
The Bishop of Ramsbury, Andrew Rumsey
The Bishop of Reading, Olivia Graham
The Bishop of Ripon, Anna Eltringham
The Bishop of Salisbury, Stephen Lake
The Bishop of Sherborne, Karen Gorham
The Bishop of Shrewsbury, Sarah Bullock
The Bishop of Southwark, Christopher Chessun
The Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, Martin Seeley
The Bishop of Stafford, Matthew Parker
The Bishop of Stepney, Joanne Grenfell
The Bishop of Taunton and Acting Bishop of Coventry, Ruth Worsley
The Bishop of Tewkesbury, Robert Springett
The Bishop of Thetford, Ian Bishop
The Bishop of Worcester, John Inge