Heckler Halts Gay Bishop's London Sermon

Episcopal rift over homosexuality roils upcoming conference
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jul 14, 2008 10:06 AM CDT
A protester is led out of church after heckling as the Right Reverend Gene Robinson delivered a sermon at St Mary's Church in Putney, west London Sunday July 13, 2008.   (AP Photo/Stefan Rousseau)
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(Newser) – He was uninvited to the Anglican Church's big, once-a-decade Lambeth Conference next week, but New Hampshire’s gay Episcopal bishop decided cheerfully to go anyway, to be a “constant and friendly reminder” of gays in the sect. Not so cheerful was the heckler who interrupted his sermon in London last night, calling the Rt. Rev. Gene Robinson a heretic and blaming him for the church’s division over homosexuality, the Independent reports.

The Archbishop of Canterbury decided not to invite Robinson in order to dodge an uproar—but that backfired, the AP notes. "I'm not storming the pulpit to wrestle the microphone from the archbishop," Robinson said. “I'm just not willing to let the bishops meet and pretend that we don't exist.” He added: "I do not think that there is a person around and breathing that believes that I'm the first gay bishop, just the first talking honestly about it."