Sexuality - Church Times Book Review
The following review of Sexuality: The Inclusive Church Resource was published by the Church Times in June 2015
Sexuality: The Inclusive Church resource is part of the Inclusive Church Network's resource books on various areas of inclusion (from mental health to ethnicity and gender). It seeks to educate, to reflect theologically, and to provide practical advice and guidance. This it does rather magnificently.
Taking its cue from liberation theology's imperative to ground theology in lived experience, this book contains first-hand personal experiences, a theology of sexuality which illuminates that experience, as well as a resource section containing practical advice on improving a church's inclusivity. It is, then, intended as a pocket handbook and study guide for any church wanting to become inclusive.
As with the Oxford Handbook, this resource is not simply about LGBT people. It includes superb personal stories from the likes of Jo Ind, a straight woman, and "Sarah", who offers a striking insight into what it means to be older and a sexual being. Susannah Cornwall anchors this book with a succinct, masterful theology of sexuality which is worth the price of admission alone.
I commend this resource to individuals and churches honestly exploring what it means to be church in our exciting 21st-century landscape. This isn't simply about what "marriage" means in the light of recent social reforms. It is about what it means to be a person of faith in a post-modern world.
The Revd Rachel Mann is Priest-in-Charge of St Nicholas's, Burnage, and Resident Poet and Minor Canon of Manchester Cathedral.