School chap­lain ac­cused of be­ing anti-LGBTQ+

Coun­cil­lor backs Carnoustie High pupils in bid to have the Rev Mike Goss re­moved from school role

The Courier & Advertiser (Dundee Edition) - - NEWS - GRAEME STRA­CHAN gstra­chan@the­courier.co.uk

An un­holy row is rum­bling on af­ter a Carnoustie coun­cil­lor ac­cused a town min­is­ter of be­ing “an ex­treme anti-LGBTQ+ ac­tivist”.

Brian Boyd took aim at the Rev Mike Goss in the wake of a pe­ti­tion which was lodged by Carnoustie High pupils urg­ing An­gus Coun­cil to dump Mr Goss from his school chap­laincy role.

Mr Goss ac­cused Mr Boyd of pur­su­ing a vendetta against him and said he would be tak­ing le­gal ad­vice over the pe­ti­tion which he has de­scribed as a “tis­sue of lies”.

Stu­dent cam­paign­ers have ac­cused Mr Goss of be­ing against gay mar­riage and claimed that he has stated his ha­tred for the LGBTQ+ com­mu­nity “on mul­ti­ple oc­ca­sions”.

Mr Boyd said: “It’s alarm­ing to see this topic rear­ing its ugly head again and with hun­dreds of peo­ple sign­ing the pe­ti­tion the coun­cil clearly has a prob­lem here that must be re­solved.

“The coun­cil and my­self as an elected of­fi­cial have a duty of care to pro­tect young adults whilst at school.

“As a coun­cil we have a duty of care to all our young peo­ple.

“In my view, Rev Goss is an ex­treme anti-LGBTQ+ ac­tivist work­ing against in­clu­sion in his own church and is a fre­quent pub­lic com­men­ta­tor whose lan­guage is both hurt­ful and dis­crim­i­na­tory. The coun­cil should not be seen to con­done such ac­tiv­ity.

“Many con­cerned par­ents and pupils con­tacted me last year – there cer­tainly is not a good re­la­tion­ship be­tween Rev Goss and the schools he at­tends and with other min­is­ters within the town.

“I hope to see a change in the chap­laincy soon.”

Mr Boyd said he be­lieves there are “bet­ter can­di­dates for this role”.

He sug­gested the schools should hold a bal­lot ask­ing the pupils and par­ents which min­is­ter they would pre­fer.

Mr Goss, min­is­ter of Barry, which is linked with Carnoustie, has of­fered to meet with the LGBTQ+ com­mu­nity at Carnoustie High to dis­cuss their con­cerns.

He has stren­u­ously de­nied that he has ever said that he hated any mem­ber of the LGBTQ+ com­mu­nity.

He said: “The depths that this coun­cil­lor is sink­ing to are ex­tra­or­di­nary and I don’t know why he is pur­su­ing this vendetta against me.

“I en­joy ex­cel­lent re­la­tion­ships with the town min­is­ters and we re­cently worked to­gether shar­ing Holy Week ser­vices in each other’s churches.

“I have no fur­ther com­ments other than I will be tak­ing ad­vice from the church’s law depart­ment.”

Mr Goss opened a for­mal protest over the Church of Scot­land’s move to back same-sex mar­riages among min­is­ters in 2016.

He also gave an in­ter­view to BBC Scot­land last year where he stated that “same-sex re­la­tion­ships are not what God has planned for us as hu­man be­ings”.

An An­gus Coun­cil spokesman said: “We are aware of the pe­ti­tion and its con­tents and will be meet­ing with those con­cerned to dis­cuss the mat­ter.”

As a coun­cil we have a duty of care to all our young peo­ple. COUN­CIL­LOR BRIAN BOYD

The Rev Mike Goss claims he is the vic­tim of a “vendetta” and has of­fered to meet mem­bers of the LGBTQ+ com­mu­nity to dis­cuss their con­cerns.

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