Anna Morrell writes for the Church in Wales:
The Church should be a place where gay and lesbian people can be “honest and open, respected and affirmed,” say the bishops of the Church in Wales.
They are issuing a joint pastoral letter in response to consultations and debates on same-sex marriage across the Church in Wales last year, as well as to a statement from the Primates of the Anglican Communion in January.
In the letter, the bishops acknowledge that while the consultations showed that the Church is not yet ready to allow or bless same-sex marriage, the debate is not over. They commit to working for a Church in which gay and lesbian people are “fully affirmed as equal disciples” and to praying with and for them.
They also apologise to gay and lesbian people for the persecution and mistreatment they have endured at the hands of the Church and they commit themselves to providing a safe place within the Church for all gay and lesbian people.
Alongside the letter, the Bishops are also publishing a series of prayers which may be said with a couple following the celebration of a civil partnership or civil marriage.