Reverend Chris Swannell, a Russell man, is the first gay Anglican who has become a priest. He ran his first communion service at Christ Church, in which he declared that it was very wonderful to be accepted as a priest and every one could take heart from his ordination. He said that there was no discontent over this long wait to his vocation for him and his partner living more than 25 years together.
We have probably felt a little bit excluded and not fully inclusive within the church. So I think for the LGBT Christian community, and for those who have a spiritual faith, hopefully this will give them a little bit of hope for the future.
He remarked that he was glad about the call of the Russell congregation who asked him to be ordained though he didn’t think about being a priest. According to Church admin officer, the ordination was set to go in 2007, but it didn’t take place till now.
I always say if there is one person who was born to be a priest, it was Chris. It was just his spirituality and willingness to serve has always been there.
Dr. Kim Benton stated that there are gay priests who have had to hide the fact, but now all can be open about it as this is the way it should be. The Christ Church members were happy about the decision and said the day was anticipated.