A new network of Scottish evangelicals has been formed following the Church of Scotland’s decision to allow gay priests in civil partnerships to be ordained. 

Several congregations are to vote on leaving the Church of Scotland, also known as the Kirk, after its General Assembly voted in May to allow individual churches to select ministers in same-sex relationships. But more than 350 evangelical ministers, elders and members of the Church of Scotland gathered in Perth in June and committed themselves to remain in the Kirk.

A press release from a group, which is yet to be named, said, ‘Many evangelicals within the Church of Scotland are deeply concerned about the current crisis over the ordination and induction of those in same-sex civil partnerships. Some have left the Kirk and others are considering doing so.

‘We believe that the Church of Scotland remains an important vehicle for reaching the whole population of Scotland with the Gospel and, despite recent decisions, believe that God is still at work among us. We also believe that we can remain with integrity. ‘We urge others to join with us and to remain in the Church of Scotland, as we seek to restore and rebuild our Church.’

The Church of Scotland has insisted it is not in crisis. In a statement, a spokesperson said ‘conversations’ were being held with fewer than ten of the Kirk’s 1,400 congregations over the issue and added, ‘The work of the Church of Scotland ? preaching the Good News and caring for the vulnerable the length and breadth of the country ? continues unabated.’