Thinking Anglicans

Rochester speaks

Michael Nazir-Ali, Bishop of Rochester, has expressed some opinions in the Sunday Telegraph.

See Ignore our Christian values and the nation will drift apart.

I have resigned as Bishop of Rochester after nearly 15 years. During that time, I have watched the nation drift further and further away from its Christian moorings. Instead of the spiritual and moral framework provided by the Judaeo-Christian tradition, we have been led to expect, and even to celebrate, mere diversity. Not surprisingly, this has had the result of loosening the ties of law, customs and values, and led to a gradual loss of identity and of cohesiveness. Every society, for its wellbeing, needs the social capital of common values and the recognition of certain virtues which contribute to personal and social flourishing. Our ideas about the sacredness of the human person at every stage of life, of equality and natural rights and, therefore, of freedom, have demonstrably arisen from the tradition rooted in the Bible…

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Leonelmynsterpreost (=David Rowett)bobinswpaDavid |dah•veed|Göran Koch-Swahne Recent comment authors
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Ian Montgomery
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Ian Montgomery

What a splendid and Godly man this is. I only hope that his prophetic voice is not lost on the Church of England. This is truly prophetic speaking out at its best. My fear is of course that this will be lost in the urge to be politically correct and “not to rock the boat.”

May God be with you Bishop Michael – be not silenced by the naysayers. The naysayers have traded a “bowl of pottage” for the blessing of God.

Göran Koch-Swahne
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Isn’t (soon to be x) Roffen speaking against himself here? Isn’t “our ideas about the sacredness of the human person at every stage of life, of equality and natural rights and, therefore, of freedom” all “demonstrably arisen from the tradition rooted in the Bible…” precisely what he dislikes and is out to counter? Also “Judaeo-Christian tradition” often stands for Hellenist notions Ideas of Creation as Vale of Tears and Prison of the Soul – the very opposite to “the sacredness of the human person at every stage of life” and the “tradition rooted in the Bible”, that God created this… Read more »

peterpi
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peterpi

“The disappearance of a public recognition of marriage”? That’s rich. This Yank wonders, has Britain forsworn civil marriages, are known heterosexuals who dare to show their spouse in public being subjected to discrimination and derision?
Or, does what +Nazir-Ali really refer to is extending the recognition of marriage to same-sex couples? Expanding marriage?
I also have to wonder with the “persecuted Christians” +Nazir-Ali refers to include not only those souls in Muslim lands, Communist lands, etc., but those Anglicans called Episcopalians being “persecuted” and “led astray” by TEC in the deep dark continent of North America

Pat O'Neill
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Pat O'Neill

“Every society, for its wellbeing, needs the social capital of common values and the recognition of certain virtues which contribute to personal and social flourishing.” Agreed…but in a secular multi-religious society, these need not–and indeed ought not–come from a specific religious tradition, but from the values and virtues all traditions…religious and not…hold dear. Or does the archbishop believe that values and virutes of those other traditions are so different from the Judeo-Christian ones as to be unassimilatable? I would point out to him that, a few hundred years ago, the same would have been said regarding Jewish and Christian values… Read more »

JCF
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JCF

Translation: “I didn’t resign, the CofE resigned from me!”

Father Ron Smith
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Father Ron Smith

“Instead of the spiritual and moral framework provided by the Judaeo-Christian tradition, we have been led to expect, and even to celebrate, mere diversity. Not surprisingly, this has had the result of loosening the ties of law, customs and values, and led to a gradual loss of identity and of cohesiveness.” – Retiring Bp. Nazir-Ali – No doubt Jesus himself would have been criticised by this good Bishop – for including other than the traditional Hebrew faithful within the scope of God’s salvific plan for ‘All the World’. The inclusion of people other than ‘God’s Chosen’ in his broad and… Read more »

Martin Reynolds
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Martin Reynolds

I too find the bishop’s thinking somewhat rambling.

It is true that the Church is no longer at the center of things – as the Bishop of Oxford bemoaned in the debate on Civil Partnerships, a church is, the ONLY place a Civil Partnership cannot be registered as a matter of law.

Is he saying that his ministry has been a total failure?

Bill Moorhead
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“Our ideas about the sacredness of the human person at every stage of life, of equality and natural rights and, therefore, of freedom…”

Unless, of course, they are gay.

riazat butt
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I like this bit – I wonder which faith he refers to? “Different faiths and traditions will not necessarily produce the values and virtues which have been so prominent in the history of this country. It is quite wrong to presume that they will. Some faiths may emphasise social solidarity more than personal freedom, others publicly enforce piety over a nurturing of the interior life and yet others stress honour and shame rather than humility, service and sacrifice. It may be, of course, that there is a useful overlap among these traditions in terms of values by which to live.… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Yeah, which indeed?

;=)

David |dah•veed|
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David |dah•veed|

Pat O’N do not rush things, he is no one’s archbishop, yet.

bobinswpa
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bobinswpa

I guess only Nazir-Ali’s Christians have the right morals. Other Christians and world religions have defective morals (The pope and he can argue that one) or in the case of atheist, none at all. I can’t follow that logic.

mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
Guest

I think the claim that equality is rooted in the Bible is a little disingenuous – it’s only when read through a particular hermeneutic and tradition which permits the convenient setting aside of inconvenient passages that you can finesse that (I mean, ‘Oi Ioudaioi’ in John hardly get good, equal treatment, do they?).

The good bishop’s argument for scriptural authority leaves a hole big enough to drive a wagon through, does it not?

Leonel
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Leonel

I don’t believe in Ali’s sincerity. He made a fool of himself in the run to Rowan’s appointment as Cantuar and has made a fool of himself repeatedly since then.
Please let him go to Rome already. I never believed he was an evangelical, either. He just lives in Lalaland, no address reported.