Religious Orientation and Attitudes towards Gay Marriage and Homosexual Bishops
Theology and Sexuality
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... : an empirical enquiry inside an Anglican cathedral Abstract The aim of the present study is to examine the relationship between religious orientation and attitudes towards two contentious issues about human sexuality in the Church of England, by studying the broad range of people found attending an Anglican cathedral carol service. A sample of 381 individuals who attended a Carol Service at Worcester cathedral in December 2009 thoroughly completed the New Indices of Religious Orientation (NIRO).The scales were found to be reliable for the sample. The same participants responded to two statements relating to their attitudes towards gay marriage and the appointment of homosexual men as bishops. Both men and older people are found to report higher levels of negative attitudes towards both issues. Strong positive correlations are found between intrinsic religious orientation and negative attitudes towards gay marriage and gay bishops, these remain after controlling for age and sex. After further controlling for intrinsic and extrinsic orientation, it is found that quest orientation is positively associated with favourable views towards both issues. Areas for further research are identified.