Brisbane Cathedral Ends Celebration of “Pride” with Sermon calling for “No more!”

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St John’s Anglican Cathedral in Brisbane has ended an extensive engagement with the city’s “Pride” festival with their annual “Pride Evensong”. The event, typically attracting a congregation of around 40, included a sermon by Rev. Steve McMahon of St Paul’s Ipswich.

In his sermon for St Michael and All Angels, entitled “Why is celebrating Pride a Church imperative?“, McMahon directly compares the fight for the full endorsement of homosexual activity with the great cosmic battle for good against evil of Michael the Archangel against Satan. In this context he then challenges his hearers to have “No more!” passivity in their approach to the topic.

People within the LGBTQI+ community are being shamed, fired from jobs, beat up, bullied, turned away and murdered and yet we question if Pride has a place in church. And we’re scared of being branded a gay church?

No more!

Sitting comfortably in our own cocoons of privilege and loving everyone who joins us inside is not enough. Like Jesus, we are called to be visible. We are called to be present on the margins. We are called to be utterly specific about our pride. Phrases like “all are welcome” or “all have a place here” or even “all lives matter”; those phrases carry no weight.

Lives depend on specificity.

McMahon goes on to challenge those at the Evensong to “do everything in your power to make sure every marginalized and oppressed child of God knows how deeply they are loved.” Given the current context of the crisis in the Anglican Church of Australia it is hard to see this as anything other than an encouragement to continue to push the boundaries on the question of same-sex marriage.

The Cathedral and Diocese have been active across the entire Pride event. The Cathedral’s magazine, “The Eagle”, devoted its August 2019 edition to the topic, featuring stories of LGBTetc persons. A number of the articles are endorsements of same-sex marriage in direct contradiction to the official position of the Anglican Church of Australia.

The Cathedral has also had a presence at the Pride parade, even rebranding it’s distinctive eagle logo in the pride rainbow colours.

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This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Stephen Bond

    “The Eagle has branded” …. (marketing joke)

  2. Robert Bruce

    How nice it is for some prominent churchmen to be so inclusive and welcoming to everyone irrespective of their lifestyles and beliefs. How satisfied they must feel as champions of popular culture in which anything goes, and how comfortable it must be not having to preach any of that old-fashioned stuff about morality.

    How weird they must think the concept of loving a sinner but not their sin, and even more weird the teachings of Jesus about judgement; that bit about sheep and goats is just something to do with farm animals, isn’t it? It wouldn’t have anything to do with a modern urban culture, would it? Would it?

  3. Blair Martin

    Inaccurate reporting of the number who attended Evensong on September 29. Double that number were present, and close to 60 people stayed on for an Open Forum style conversation with Rev McMahon following the service.

    In the interests of fair dealing, please correct the error in your article. Thank you.


    1. David Ould

      hi Blair. The article states that the service has typically attracted around 40. If last Sunday’s attendance was greater then it was atypical compared to previous events.
      So no inaccuracy in the article, but thank you for providing additional information.

  4. linda nolan

    Too little, too late. Anglican leaders have done nothing to avoid an inevitable schism. (Exhibit Uniting Church of Australia). A directive from the Primate or a Bishop’s Conference in 2018 instructing clergy to celebrate stand-alone Holy Matrimony (i.e. leaving the civil/legal marriage process to public servants) would have nipped this in the bud. Reap/Sow.

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