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New lesbian bishop says she will not be a ‘campaigner for the cause’ of same-sex marriage in the church

Lily Wakefield January 28, 2020
Bishop of Monouth

Cherry Vann, the new Bishop of Monmouth. (The Church in Wales/ Facebook)

The lesbian priest and first woman to ever hold the position of Bishop of Monmouth will not be fighting for same-sex marriage within The Church in Wales.

Cherry Vann was consecrated in front of more than 400 people in a ceremony at Brecon cathedral on Saturday, January 25.

According to The Church in Wales, in 1994 she was one of the first women to be ordained as a priest in the Church of England, and she lives with her civil partner Wendy and their two dogs.

The Church in Wales, the Welsh equivalent of the Church of England, does not allow its priests to conduct same-sex weddings.

Although Vann said that she hoped her position as Bishop of Monmouth would give “hope” to LGBT+ people, she also said that she would not be a “campaigner for the cause” of same-sex marriage in The Church in Wales.

She told the BBC: “I hope that it is a sign of hope. There are a lot of gay people in our schools, in our colleges and universities, out there in society who think that the church is against them, that they don’t have a place in the church.

“I hope that being here as a gay person, in a same-sex relationship, will give those people hope and help them to see that this is something that the church embraces and is able to celebrate along with any other faithful committed relationship.

“I hope that people are not disappointed… I can see that some might be hoping that I might be more of a campaigner for the cause, but I am here as a bishop with a job to do.”

Vann’s consecration came just days after the Church of England’s House of Bishops released a document, created in December 2019, reaffirming its opposition to same-sex marriage and declaring that sex should only be for married, heterosexual couples.

Since the document’s release, around 3,000 people, including 800 clergy members, have said that the guidance has made the church “a laughing stock” and have called for it to be withdrawn.

More: bishop of monmouth, cherry vann, Church of England, same sex marriage, The Church in Wales

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