Bishop Gene Robinson's Headshot

Bishop Gene Robinson

The first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal church - Panelist Blurb

Bishop V. Gene Robinson is widely known for being the first priest in an openly gay relationship to be consecrated a bishop in a major Christian denomination. He is the world's leading religious spokesperson for gay rights and gay marriage. His recent book, God Believes in Love: Straight Talk About Gay Marriage, is a groundbreaking book that lovingly and persuasively makes the case for same-sex marriage.

While Robinson lived openly with another man for 20 years, his election as the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire in 2003 was met with immediate controversy. In June 2008 he formalized his partnership with Mark Andrew in a civil ceremony and a service of thanksgiving, further inflaming tensions.

Recently retired from the New Hampshire diocese, where he served as Bishop for nine years, Robinson has been particularly active in the area of full civil rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. Working at the state, national, and international levels, he has spoken and lobbied for equal protection under the law and full civil marriage rights.

He has been honored by many LGBT organizations for this work, including the Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, GLAAD, and the Equality Forum. Robinson was invited by Barack Obama to give the invocation at the opening inaugural ceremonies at the Lincoln Memorial on January 18, 2009.

His most recent book, God Believes in Love: Straight Talk About Gay Marriage, presents an argument for same-sex marriage from a religious perspective, addressing the controversial issues surrounding the debate while sharing the stories of his own marriages and how his views have been shaped by Church history. He also authored In the Eye of the Storm: Swept to the Center by God, which offers an honest, thoughtful portrait of Robinson, the faith that has informed his life, and the controversy that continues to rock his Church. A feature-length documentary on Bishop Robinson's ministry, "Love Free or Die," premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2012.