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The questing spirit: listening to the silent voice of gay clergy in the Church of Scotland

Langlands, Cameron Hunter (2008) The questing spirit: listening to the silent voice of gay clergy in the Church of Scotland. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This research arises from personal experience. The thesis is divided into two parts in order to reflect and symbolize the dichotomy which the subject of homosexuality, in general, and gay clergy, in particular, creates within the Church of Scotland. This thesis seeks to explore this dichotomy The Prologue provides an autobiographical backcloth to the research, it acknowledges my own personal experience and seeks to place the debate, with regards to the inclusion of gay clergy in the Church, in context. Chapter One outlines the research methodology and, in particular justifies the use of discourse analysis as an appropriate research tool to investigate the subtext of the Church of Scotland’s 1983 Report of Study Group on Sexuality. Chapter Two focuses on the 1983 Report of Study Group on Sexuality. Although there have been later reports which have dealt with various aspects of sexuality this remains the Church’s official stance on the particular subject of homosexuality. Chapter Three outlines the research methodology for the second part of my research where I interview five members of the clergy who have self-identified as being homosexual. It will justify, as an appropriate research tool, the use of case studies and semi-structured interviews as a means of uncovering information that would be impossible to gain otherwise. Chapter Four contains a summary of the interviews that I have conducted allowing the voices of those who are hidden in the Church to be heard. Chapter Five focuses on the five interviews and identifies common themes which have emerged from the semi-structured interviews and offers theological reflection and explores the wider implications which such reflection implies. The conclusion seeks to offer a way forward in the present climate which will allow gay clergy to play a full part in the life of the Church, free from the current constraints that being open about their sexuality forbids.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Critical Studies > Theology and Religious Studies
Supervisor's Name: Walton, Dr. Heather
Date of Award: 2008
Depositing User: Mrs Marie Cairney
Unique ID: glathesis:2008-930
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 21 Jul 2009
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2012 13:28
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/930

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