• Inclusive Church Group

    A warm welcome to all

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    St Paul's Church is a member of Inclusive Church and has an active inclusive church group that meets to discuss theology, access, diversity, and more.

     

     

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    Prayers of Love and Faith (PLF) for same-sex couples.

     

    Same-sex couples who would like to discuss use of the prayers within an existing service are warmly encouraged to contact the Vicar on: vicar@stpaulscambridge.org.uk

    St Paul’s Church and the ‘Prayers of Love and Faith’

    Parish Church Council Statement, May 2024

     

    In November 2023, the General Synod of the Church of England approved the use of a new set of prayers – ‘Prayers of Love and Faith’ – intended for those in committed same-sex relationships. Here is one example: Gracious God, who taught us through your Son that love is the fulfilling of the law: give grace to your servants N and N, that they may be companions in joy and comfort in times of trouble; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

     

    • These prayers are ‘commended by the House of Bishops as resources in praying with and for two people who love one another and who wish to give thanks for and mark that love in faith before God’. The prayers may be used within a normal service in a parish church upon request, at the discretion of the Vicar.

     

    • Prayers of Love and Faith are the first decision emerging from a six-year consultation process, called Living in Love and Faith (LLF), intended to help the Church of England come to a better understanding of the very different views held by its members and leaders on the legitimacy of committed same-sex relationships.

     

    • The LLF process also hoped to chart a way forward that would respect those different views while maintaining the unity of the Church. It has been and continues to be demanding, difficult and divisive, and it is unfinished.

     

    • St Paul’s church has long been committed to an ‘inclusive’ stance towards LGBTQ+ people. This means it seeks greater inclusion for LGBTQ+ people in same-sex relationships within the life of the church generally, and in fulfilling all its various roles and offices. It does not imply that those opposing such moves seek to be ‘exclusive’ or hostile towards LGBTQ+ people.

     

    • In 2021, the PCC decided to join a national group committed to many kinds of inclusion, called Inclusive Church. When Prayers of Love and Faith were issued, our own Inclusive Church Group supported them as an opportunity to ‘make more visible our welcome to the LGBTQ+ community, and to reach out further to them’.

     

    • In January 2024, the St Paul’s PCC offered its support to the Vicar, the Rev’d Imogen Nay, in using Prayers of Love and Faith.

     

    • The PCC also reaffirmed that St Paul’s should remain a place where those who cannot support Prayers of Love and Faith are equally welcomed members of the church. It respects that there are different legitimate views of what the Bible, the traditions of the church, and contemporary experience, can support. St Paul’s PCC (May 2024). A longer paper fully explaining the above is available here