Bishop in new row on 'outing'

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The former Bishop of Durham, the Right Rev David Jenkins, returned to controversy yesterday with a claim that Outrage!, the homosexual pressure group, had been right to "out" 10 bishops as homosexuals last year, writes Andrew Brown.

Among the ten was his successor as Bishop of Durham, the Right Rev Michael Turnbull, a married man with children, who has a 26-year-old conviction for gross indecency in a public lavatory in Hull.

Dr Jenkins originally made his comments to a small conference in St Mary's Cathedral, Glasgow; but they were picked up by the gay Pink Paper and last night confirmed by the Bishop. "I must say, that having listened to Peter Tatchell, I came to the conclusion that Outrage! could not be blamed," he said.

"I am part of an institution which has been, and internally still is, pretty hypocritical about homosexuality. In the old days, lots of people were known to be homosexual and everyone was perfectly happy about it."

"I'm speechless" said a spokeswoman for the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, adding that the Archbishop and the church as a whole had always condemned "outing".