In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Bishop John Sentamu declared that he strictly believes that “marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman” and seemingly disparaged government plans to change the law later this year.
The remarks have since seen a rebuttal to the article posted by YUSU President Tim Ellis on Saturday, and a protest at the Minster has been planned by YUSU LGBT for Wednesday afternoon.
On the YUSU blog, Ellis condemned Bishop Sentamu’s remarks, saying, “I would argue that it is the state’s responsibility to ensure that all UK citizens can enjoy equal rights regardless of their sexual orientation. It is not the place of the church to use out-dated and homophobic rhetoric to deny citizens of their right to marry.”
Tim Ellis told Vision that he felt the blog post was necessary as he “felt ashamed to be a member of the same city as the Archbishop. He is indirectly a spokesperson for York and I felt it necessary to show that York students do not hold the same archaic views as him.”
LGBT officer Cem Turhan shared a similar sentiment, telling Vision that “it’s disappointing to hear such comments from Dr John Sentamu considering he is usually one to represent minorities in our communities.”
“Marriage has always been, and always should be, a way in which two people can express their love and devotion for each other and should not be limited. I think it’s extremely disheartening for LGBT students in York, and I feel upset that I am publically marginalised by such an influential figure.”
The protest, which currently has 122 attendees on Facebook, is set to go ahead Wednesday Week 4 at 1pm and is open to all.