Church of England in hot water over 'boys in tutus' guidance

The Church of England became the target of criticism after it released educational guidance which said boys and girls should be allowed to wear tutus, tiaras, heels, or any other outfit that they want regardless of their gender.

(REUTERS / Denis Sinyakov)Russian ballerina and gold winner Anastasiya Soboleva performs during the final concert of laureates of the XI International Ballet Competition at Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow June 20, 2009.

According to Church of England Chief Education Officer Nigel Genders in a blog, Christians have to foster a welcoming environment in schools. He also described the guidance as practical and said children ought to be able "to explore their identities as they grow up, The Telegraph relayed.

In a Twitter post on Nov. 13, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said the new guidance aimed to help Church schools address the bullying of LGBT students and creating "safe places to grow" for children.

However, Andrea Williams of Christian Concern said the Church of England had lost its chance to communicate the Bible's teachings on sexuality. She maintained that gender cannot change and that the Church should instead guide people to Jesus Christ when they go through a period of confusion.

On Nov. 9, conservative evangelical Lorna Ashworth left the Church of England's Archbishops' Council and the General Synod over what she saw was "an ongoing and rapid erosion of faithfulness." She said she was no longer willing to be part of efforts to diminish the gospel of Jesus Christ in favor of "an agenda of revisionism," The Church Times reported.

"I refuse to be mistaken as one participating in the fanciful notion of 'good disagreement,'" said Ashworth in her resignation letter. "As such, I am standing down from the Archbishops' Council with immediate effect and all subsequent bodies, including the General Synod."

In July, Ashworth expressed concern over the lack of bishops and church leaders who continue to stand for the truth faithfully. Until that issue was addressed, she said the Church would only be an instrument for confusion.

Dr. Martin Warner, the Bishop of Chichester, praised Ashcroft's dedication to the Archbishop' Council. He said her resignation will be a big loss for the Church of England.