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Towards a Theology of Same-Sex Marriage

Towards a Theology of Same-Sex Marriage

Squaring the Circle

Clare Herbert. Foreword by Samuel Wells.

Quick Overview

Same-sex marriage has been a hotly debated topic within the Church for many years. Clare Herbert draws on her experience as a lesbian priest in the Church of England whilst exploring the practical theology and significance of same-sex relationships within the Christian faith.
Details Price Qty
Paperback / softback
2020, 8.43in x 5.43in / 214mm x 138mm, 176pp
ISBN: 9781785925702


A transformative exploration of queer theology and the debate around same-sex marriage within the Church. Clare Herbert draws on her experience as a priest within the Church of England in a committed same-sex relationship and considers the questions that have shaped religious debate for many years.

This book explores the concept of same-sex marriage in relation to the heteronormative definition of marriage, and its effect on past understandings of the sacrament. Interweaving stories from Christians struggling to reconcile their faith with their sexuality alongside wider queer theology and the theology of marriage, Herbert explores the unique understanding of God provided by the experience of committed same-sex love , and lays the groundwork for redefining the traditional definition of marriage.


'In this compelling book, Clare Herbert provides a timely and potent case for the claim that LGBT relationships expand, renew and enrich Christian understandings of Marriage. Herbert balances genuine theological engagement with actual human stories. She gathers out of the fragments and promises of human lives fresh conceptions of hallowed relationships. A book for everyone - queer and straight - who longs to escape humbug and artificial holiness, and who wants to know more about how God blesses our lives and longings.'
- Canon Rachel Mann, Priest, Poet, and Theologian

'Clare Herbert's study of the lives of gay and lesbian Christian couples in civil partnerships is an example of qualitative research and practical theology at its best. Committed, honest and searching, it shines a light on the struggles but also the courage and faithfulness of LGBT couples in the church and thus reveals movingly the goodness, the very holiness, of these lives. And it is beautifully written in intelligent, accessible prose. Herbert brings the witness of her interviewees into dialogue with her own life story, the policies of the church and with queer theology in a creative interplay which is both insightful and challenging. Every single priest, bishop, pastoral carer and theological educator in the Church of England should read it.'
- Professor Nicola Slee, Director of Research at the Queen's Foundation, Birmingham


By (author): Clare Herbert