Greenbelt festival endorses pilgrimage of repentance
Greenbelt, one of Britain’s biggest Christian festivals, have contacted me to express their support as an organisation for my pilgrimage of repentance for homophobia. I’ve been a big fan of Greenbelt since I first attended it ten years ago. I now go every year, have spoken there twice and I really enjoy it. I’m really chuffed to receive Greenbelt’s endorsement.
I’ve been taken aback (in a good way) by the number of organisations that have contacted me in the last few days to endorse my pilgrimage and ask me to list them as supporters (seven in the last week alone). With some of them, I had known that they were thinking about it. But with Greenbelt, I had no idea. It was a wonderful surprise.
Greenbelt draws over 20,000 people to Cheltenham every year. I find it a genuinely safe, but challenging, space in which to explore a whole range of issues with people of varied perspectives. While most of the people who go there have no problem with homosexuality, it’s still a place in which those who disagree can be welcome and be heard. This is overlooked by groups such as Anglican Mainstream, who campaign against the acceptance of same-sex relationships, and who called for a boycott of Greenbelt last year because Peter Tatchell was speaking there.
Greenbelt told me:
“Greenbelt is happy to support and encourage Symon in his walk of repentance. Our belief is that our Christian community is enriched by the inclusion of all people, regardless of ethnicity, gender, sexuality, background or belief. As a previous speaker and a loyal festivalgoer, Symon has always been supportive of this inclusive approach. We are pleased that we now have the opportunity to reciprocate that support, as Symon explores and promotes a vision of a faith where all are welcome.”