From Times Online February 9, 2010
Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent
The Archbishop of Canterbury issued a “profound apology” to the lesbian and gay Christian community today.
In a powerful address to the General Synod, Dr Rowan Williams warned that any schism within the Church would represent a betrayal of God’s mission.
But he made clear that he regretted recent rhetoric in which he has sought to mollify the fears of the traditionalist wing of the church.
The Archbishop is from the Church’s liberal wing and a man who once espoused equal rights for gays within the Church. More recently he has adopted a conservative line for the sake of Church unity.
Today he said: “There are ways of speaking about the question that seem to ignore these human realities or to undervalue them.
“I have been criticised for doing just this and I am profoundly sorry for the carelessness that could give such an impression.”
Addressing the even more contentious debate over gay ordinations — something which threatens to split the Church farther with the expected consecration in May of Canon Mary Glasspool, a lesbian, as a bishop in Los Angeles — Dr Williams said it had not been helped by those who ignored the fact that many worshippers were gay, as well as many “sacrificial and exemplary priests”.
Read the rest of Ruth's column here.