Why is the Church doing this?
The purpose of the Pastoral Advisory Group is to help the Church model the Archbishop of Canterbury and Yorks’ desire for “radical Christian inclusion founded in scripture, in reason, in tradition, in theology and the Christian faith as the Church of England has received it”. The Church wants to ensure that it offers pastoral care to all people, especially in the context of changing perspectives on gender, identity and sexuality.
How will it do this?
The Pastoral Advisory Group will offer advice to Dioceses when they need to address particular circumstances regarding same-sex relationships, gender and sexuality within their dioceses. This will encourage consistent practice across Dioceses that is in line with the Church’s teaching.
The Pastoral Advisory Group will commission ‘fieldwork’ that gathers stories of how churches embody radical Christian inclusion founded in scripture, in reason, in tradition, in theology and the Christian faith as the Church of England has received it. They will use the outcomes of this work to produce materials for churches to reflect on their own pastoral practice in relation to LGBTQI+ people.
The group will work closely with the Living in Love and Faith project as it produces teaching and learning resources and will continue to review advice as the work progresses.