The chaplain at a school created by the founder of the Methodist Church has resigned over comments suggesting gay and lesbian people should stay single.
Reverend David Hull made the comments after a Methodist Conference passed a motion in favour of allowing Methodist ministers to conduct same-sex weddings on their premises.
The reverend, as chair of the Methodists Evangelicals Together group, stated that the only plan for God’s creation is for a man and woman to marry, or otherwise to stay ‘single and celibate’.
And now, four months on, Revd Hull has handed in his resignation – after claiming that circulation of his comments around the school has led to ‘unhelpful tensions’.
Revd Hull has been chaplain at Kingswood School (pictured), in Bath, Somerset, since 2015
Revd Hull has been chaplain at Kingswood School, in Bath, Somerset, since 2015.
The 270-year-old school is notable for being created by Jon Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church, in 1748.
In July, Revd Hull told Christian news group Premier: ‘As Methodists Evangelicals Together, we are very clear that the good news is for all.
‘We believe that as part of that good news, God’s plan for creation is either that we are married as one man and one woman for life, or that we are single and celibate just as Jesus was.
‘Both of those ways of living are absolutely good news and part of God’s good news.’
And in a letter distributed among the Kingswood School community on November 4, Revd Hull explained the decision behind his resignation.
He wrote: ‘Since the summer, comments I made in the context of an internal debate within the Methodist Church have been circulated amongst the student, staff and parent bodies.
‘This has brought unhelpful tensions into the school community.
‘There has been no suggestion from church or school of any wrongdoing in making the comments.
The 270-year-old school is notable for being created by Jon Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church, in 1748 (file photo)
‘The views I have expressed have been recognised as being in line with the current position of the church and will continue to be affirmed by the church.
‘But the situation nevertheless needs to be resolved.
‘I have therefore requested from the church an immediate curtailment of my appointment as chaplain to Kingswood School, which has subsequently been granted.
‘I have been very grateful for the opportunity to serve the Kingswood School as its chaplain,’ he added.
‘I wish the school well as it continues its mission of education and look forward to continuing to serve the Methodist Church in ministry.’
In the same letter Kingswood headteacher Simon Morris said: ‘Revd Hull has been chaplain at Kingswood since 2015.
‘I would on behalf of students, staff, parents and governors wish to thank him for his ministry to the Kingswood Foundation and for his commitment to the whole school community.
‘I am sure you would wish to join me in wishing him well for the next stage of his ministry.’
Reverend Mike Wilkinson, who has previously been chaplain at Kingswood, will fill in while a permanent replacement is found.