Gavin Ashenden ordained as bishop of church opposed to same-sex marriage

A JEP columnist and outspoken critic of the Church of England has been made a bishop for Anglicans opposed to same-sex marriage.

The Right Rev Dr Gavin Ashenden
The Right Rev Dr Gavin Ashenden

The Christian Episcopal Church of Canada and the USA has consecrated the Right Rev Dr Gavin Ashenden as missionary bishop to the UK and Europe.

The former Vicar of Gouray Church is also at the forefront of a vicar rebellion in the UK over gay marriage, and a long-standing critic of the ordination of women.

The Christian Episcopal Church was formed in the 1980s following a split in the Episcopal (Anglican) Church in the United States in the 1980s over the ordination of women and gay men.

‘It is a great privilege to be asked by members of the worldwide Anglican community – who hold to an orthodox and biblical view of what Christianity is – to play a role in caring for orthodox Anglicans,’ Dr Ashenden said.

‘I shall be promoting the tradicional faith to the best of my ability.’

Dr Ashenden will be working with the Unity Forum, which comprises religious groups that follow biblical teachings on sexuality, gay marriage and culture.

‘Gavin’s stand for orthodoxy has been an encouragement to Anglicans in the UK and beyond,’ the Right Reverend John Fenwick of the forum said.

‘We look forward to working closely with him as we face the challenges that lie ahead.’

Dr Ashenden’s rift with what he says is an increasing liberalising and secular movement in the Church of England has come to the head in a number of events this year.

In January he resigned as a Chaplain to the Queen after publicly criticising a Scottish Church for including a passage from the Koran in a service which said that Jesus was not the son of God.

In March this year, he broke away from the Church of England when he resigned his religious orders after more than 35 years as a priest.

In July he led more than 23 traditional and evangelical members of the Anglican clergy who wrote to The Daily Telegraph warning the Archbishop of Canterbury that unless the church stood firm on biblical teachings that oppose gay marriage, he risked a split between orthodox and liberal church goers.

He has been writing a column for the JEP since 2015. Dr Ashenden left the Island in October 2016 for family reasons.

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