Scottish Episcopal Reverend Kelvin Holdsworth has come under heavy criticism after suggesting that Anglicans pray for Prince George to be “blessed one day with the love of a fine young gentleman” to make the Church of England more “inclusive”.
Mr. Holdsworth, who serves as provost of St Mary’s Cathedral in Glasgow, suggested on his blog that the English church would become more inclusive if the young Prince turned out to be homosexual.
While the blog post was made almost a year ago, the statement has come into the public eye after Mr Holdsworth tweeted the statement following the announcement of the engagement of Prince Harry and American actress Meghan Markle.
My point about the fastest way to make the C of E more inclusive being to pray for Prince George to be blessed one day with the love of a fine young gentleman comes to mind at this time.https://t.co/C0ASvk0Qxe
— Kelvin Holdsworth (@thurible) November 28, 2017
Gavin Ashenden, an Episcopal missionary mishop and former chaplain to the Queen, told the BBC: “To use prayer as a mechanism for wishing this on Prince George is an unkind and destructive thing to do.”
“It doesn’t have the prince’s best interests at heart, but uses him as a gender-political football to please 1.7 per cent of the population. What is especially odd and incongruous is the fact that it is suddenly okay to pray for someone to be gay, but totally unacceptable to pray for them to be free from being gay and to resume a sexuality that was in tune with their biology. This seems not only contradictory but hypocritical,” he added.
It is not the first time Rev Ashenden has slammed the Scottish minister. Earlier this year, Mr. Holdsworth allowed passages of the Islamic Quran to be read during a service at St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral in Glasgow.
A young Muslim girl sang Sura 19 which explicitly denies the divinity of Christ and condemns his worship. Ashenden said the incident could be seen as “blasphemy”.
In his latest blog post, Mr. Holdworth praised the recent Swedish Church decision to abandon using male pronouns for God. “It all seems so sensible, so Swedish and so completely unsensational,” he wrote.
The Swedish Church has caused many controversies over the last few years, including when Stockholm lesbian Archbishop Eva Brunne advised a church to take down its crucifixes and install prayer spaces for Muslims.