Bishop Tutu’s daughter speaks out about her marriage to a woman

June 13, 2016

Last December, Mpho Tutu van Furth, daughter of Desmond Tutu, married the woman she loved. As a result, she had to relinquish her Anglican clergy license. Having been ordained in the United States, she is still considered a priest in the Episcopal Church, which recognizes same-sex marriage. But within the Anglican Church in South Africa, where she lives, she is no longer considered a member of the clergy.  Recently, she has been speaking about her feelings on the topic.  In a June 9, 2016 interview with the BBC NewsHour, she said, “The reality is, not only do we have gay, lesbian, transgender, bisexual— people of every description—sitting in our pews. To be perfectly honest, we have all of those people standing in our pulpits as well. And yet very often they sit in fear in the pews, and they stand in fear in the pulpits, because they are not free to fully own who they are and who they love.”

Watch the three and a half minute interview on BBC video.  (You can also watch and read about it here.)


For more about Mpho Tutu van Furth’s story, see her talk about her marriage as part of a panel at the Skoll World Forum in April, 2016

You may also want to read these two stories from the Guardian

“Desmnd Tutu’s Daughter Leaves Clergy after Marrying Gay Partner”   (May 24, 2016)

“Desmond Tutu’s Daughter: ‘Painful’ to give up ministry after marrying a woman  (June 9, 2016)


Letha Dawson Scanzoni
Letha Dawson Scanzoni (1935-2024) was an independent scholar, writer, and editor, and the author or coauthor of nine books. In 1978, she and Virginia Ramey Mollenkott wrote Is the Homosexual My Neighbor?, one of the earliest books urging evangelical Christians to rethink their views on homosexuality (updated edition, 1994, HarperOne). More recently, Letha coauthored (with social psychologist David G. Myers) What God Has Joined Together: The Christian Case for Gay Marriage (HarperOne, 2005 and 2006). Another of Letha’s most well-known books is All We’re Meant to Be: Biblical Feminism for Today, coauthored with Nancy A. Hardesty (Word Books, 1974; revised edition, Abingdon, 1986; updated and expanded edition, Eerdmans, 1992). Letha served as editor of Christian Feminism Today in both its former print edition (EEWC Update) and its website for 19 years until her retirement in December 2013.


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