George Conger reports for Anglican Ink:
The Anglican bishops of the West Indies have urged their governments to hold fast and resist pressure from Britain and the United States to legalize gay rights and gay marriage.Lord, have mercy upon us.
In a statement released on 25 April 2013 following the House of Bishops meeting in Barbados, bishops of the Church the Province of the West Indies (CPWI) reiterated their belief in marriage “definedas a faithful, committed, permanent and legally sanctioned relationship between a man and a woman.”
“The idea of such unions being constituted by persons of the same sex is, therefore, totally unacceptable on theological and cultural grounds,” the bishops said. The CPWI consists of eight dioceses: the Diocese of Barbados, the Diocese of Belize, the Diocese of Guyana, the Diocese of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, the Diocese of the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands, the Diocese of the North Eastern Caribbean and Aruba, the Diocese of Trinidad and Tobago and the Diocese of the Windward Islands.
The 23 active and retired members of the house of bishops observed that the push to redefine marriage was coming from abroad. There have been “trends within countries of the developing world and international forums, and in which these countries exercise a controlling interest, in which matters related to human sexuality have been elevated to the level of human rights and are being promulgated as positions which must be accepted globally.”
Failure to exceed to these new orthodoxies “results in the threat of various sanctions, including the withholding of economic aid,” they said, explaining that there has been in the US and Europe “a re-definition of gender to accommodate gay, lesbian and transgendered people, and the creation of a plurality of definitions which leaves the issue of gender to self-definition, thereby dismissing traditional definition of male and female.”
This was accompanied by the “passage of legislation among a number of metropolitan nations whereby marriage is defined as a human right in which any two persons may be joined, inclusive of persons of the same sex. The ‘marriage’ of persons of the same sex is justified as a human right on the basis of marital equality with heterosexual unions.”
Government had no authority to define marriage, but should provide the“legal framework for protecting” marriage while also protecting homosexuals “against abuse and injustice.”
Pressure on Caribbean political leaders to act according to the dictates of the political and moral sensibilities of overseas governments was intolerable they said. “The dangling of a carrot of economic assistance to faltering economies should be seen for what it is worth and should be resisted by people and government alike.”
Nor was the West in a position to dictate its morality to the people Caribbean.
“The threat and use of economic sanctions are not new experiences for us, neither is the claim to a superior morality convincing for peoples who have known the experience of chattel slavery in our past. While claiming to invoke human rights as the basis for such imposition, we submit that the same principle must allow us the right to affirm our cultural and religious convictions regarding our definitions of that most basic of social institutions, marriage,” the bishops said.
On 6 Dec 2011 the White House released a memorandum from Pres. Barack Obama entitled “International Initiatives to Advance the Human Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Persons” that directed US government agencies to push the administration’s support for the gay agenda working with overseas governments and organizations.
UK Prime Minister David Cameron at the October 2011 Commonwealth heads of Government meeting in Australia threatened countries that ban homosexuality with losing aid payments unless they conformed to his government’s standards.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.