About Inclusive Church
Inclusive Church is an educational charity (no. 1102676) founded in 2003. Although originally Anglican in origin, we now work with churches of different denominations encouraging them to explore ways in which they may become more inclusive.
- We work in partnership. We value our strong working links with a number of different organisations. See our Partnerships page for details.
- We work with churches. We have a national directory of hundreds of churches that have registered with us as ‘inclusive churches’. Get your church to join the network!
- We work with individuals. Inclusive Church is very much a ‘grass roots’ organisation. As a charity, the work and support of individuals is vital to our work. Individuals can also join Inclusive Church.
The story behind Inclusive Church
Inclusive Church was initiated in 2003 in response to a particular incident within the life of the Church of England. The Rev’d Dr Jeffrey John was nominated as Bishop of Reading and subsequently the nomination was withdrawn when it became publicly known that John was in a long-term same-sex relationship. The anger felt by so many about this withdrawal led to the creation of an online petition, asking individuals and churches to support what became known as the Inclusive Church Vision Statement.
The response was immense and soon the Petition reached nearly 10,000 signatories. Subsequently a small group of supporters met to consider this overwhelming response, and concluded that a new charity called Inclusive Church should be formed.
In 2016, the trustees created a document ‘clarifying the purpose‘ of IC.
You can read the 2003 Press Release ‘Grassroots Church movement calls for inclusiveness’, as well as the sermon preached by the then Dean of Southwark (Colin Slee) on the occasion of the launch event in 2003.