Professor Diarmaid MacCulloch explores how Christianity has shaped western attitudes to sex, gender and sexuality throughout history.

Sex and the Church - Netflix

Type: Documentary

Languages: English

Status: Ended

Runtime: 55 minutes

Premier: 2015-04-10

Sex and the Church - Homosexuality and the Anglican Communion - Netflix

Since the 1990s, the Anglican Communion has struggled with controversy regarding homosexuality in the church. In 1998, the 13th Lambeth Conference of Anglican bishops passed a resolution stating that “homosexual acts” are “incompatible with Scripture”. However, this is not legally binding. “Like all Lambeth Conference resolutions, it is not legally binding on all provinces of the Communion, including the Church of England, though it commends an essential and persuasive view of the attitude of the Communion.” “Anglican national churches in Brazil, South Africa, South India, New Zealand and Canada have taken steps toward approving and celebrating same-sex relationships amid strong resistance among other national churches within the 80 million-member global body. The Episcopal Church in the U.S. has allowed gay marriage since 2015.” “Church of England clergy have appeared to signal support for gay marriage after they rejected a bishops’ report which said that only a man and woman could marry in church.” The Church of England's General Synod is set to discuss a diocesan motion “to create a set of formal services and prayers to bless those who have had a same-sex marriage or civil partnership.” In 2002, the Diocese of New Westminster, in the Anglican Church of Canada, permitted the blessing of same-sex unions. In 2003, two openly gay men in England and the United States became candidates for bishop. In the Church of England, Jeffrey John eventually succumbed to pressure to withdraw his name from consideration to be the Bishop of Reading. In the Episcopal Church in the United States, Gene Robinson was elected and consecrated Bishop of New Hampshire, becoming the first openly gay bishop in the Anglican Communion and in apostolic Christianity. This was highly controversial and led several hundred bishops to boycott the 2008 Lambeth Conference. As an alternative to Lambeth, many of these bishops attended the Global Anglican Futures Conference in Jerusalem. As of 2004, other Anglican provinces, including the Anglican Church of Southern Africa and the Scottish Episcopal Church, permitted the ordination of gay clergy and others, such as the Episcopal Church in the USA, permitted blessing of same-sex unions as well. The BBC, in 2009, reported that many clergy in the Church of England “already bless same-sex couples on an unofficial basis”. Many provinces, primarily from the Global South and representing about half of the 80 million active Anglicans worldwide, have responded to these theological disputes by declaring a state of impaired communion with their Western counterparts. Minority groups in Western provinces have stated their opposition to what they consider un-scriptural actions by the churches in England, Canada, Australia, and the United States. Since 2000, some conservative Global South provinces have appointed missionary bishops to the United States and Canada to provide pastoral oversight to disaffected Anglicans. This process, known as Anglican realignment, is considered by the Episcopal Church USA and the Anglican Church of Canada to be an illegitimate incursion into their territories; however, conservative Anglicans argued that the incursions were necessary because of the failure of these churches to uphold orthodox teaching with regard to human sexuality. To date, as aforementioned,“the more liberal provinces that are open to changing Church doctrine on marriage in order to allow same-sex unions include Brazil, Canada, New Zealand, Scotland, South India, South Africa, the US and Wales”. In England and Wales, civil partnerships are permitted for clergy. “Neither the Church in Wales nor the Church of England are opposed to clergy being in civil partnerships. The Church of England requests that clergy in civil partnerships vow to remain sexually chaste, but the Church in Wales has no such restriction.” The Church of England has allowed priests to enter into same-sex civil partnerships since 2005. The Church of Ireland recognises the pensions for clergy in same-sex civil partnerships.

Sex and the Church - Episcopal Church of Cuba - Netflix

At least one bishop of the extraprovincial diocese, Bishop Nerva Cot, stated that she supported the ordination of openly gay and lesbian priests.

Sex and the Church - References - Netflix