Saturday, 5 July 2008

weekend opinion

Melanie McDonagh in The Times The Anglican wars are bad for all of us subtitled “If the pews of the Church of England empty, we’ll lose an army of public-spirited volunteers”

Giles Fraser in the Church Times When slaves turn on their oppressors

Damian Thompson in the Telegraph Women bishops? Just get on with it.

Robin Harris in the Times The disaster for Christians in Iraq subtitled “They used to live peaceably with other faiths but now they have been driven out and become refugees”

Andrew Brown in The Guardian Pennies for heaven subtitled “The Church of England relies heavily on its collection plate to fund each diocese – but a threat to solvency is threatening tolerance”

Posted by Peter Owen on Saturday, 5 July 2008 at 12:13pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Opinion

"But for those liberals, homosexuals, women, and any others who are on the receiving end of any Christian hate-speech, the Church feels a nasty place to be."

As someone who is perceived as all 3, sometimes even *I* (Episcopalian lifer) have to ask "Why do I bother?"

...then I remember that hateful "Christians" (so-called) are even worse to those OUTSIDE the Church, than within. Lord have mercy!

Posted by: JCF on Sunday, 6 July 2008 at 3:49am BST

An interesting set of articles.

There is a theme that most of these articles touch, even if indirectly.

Namely, the concept of the return of Jesus and how Jesus would intereact with this world.

Several years ago I put forward to a local parishioner that Jesus would return to heal this world and bring about healing and peace with the occupants. I was tersely told that was an incorrect interpretation of scripture and that the only manifestation he (inferring all Christians) would accept was the Jesus who came down from the clouds, eyes flashing fire and murdering all the "infidels" for all the world to see. This particular Christian stated that any other manifestation would not be Jesus. Thus for this kind of Christian, the only returning Jesus messiah they will acknowledge is a mass murderer (so much for the gentleness promised to the Daughter of Zion who is meant offer the light of salvation to both Jew and Gentile).

Some of the recent conflicts reek of the same bad theology. If armagaddon doesn't involve the extinction of all Hindus, Muslims, Jews and Secularists, then we (the "approved" Christians) will provoke them into behaving badly enough so that Jesus will finally come and exterminate them.

It is possible to imagine at celestial level whole layers of souls laughing at Earth's crisis.

"What's going on there?" some souls ask.

Others reply, "Jesus' priests are trying to exterminate the planet so that armagedon can be fulfilled".

The questioners ask "Isn't anyone saying no to the death of a biosphere, isn't Jesus accountable to anyone, what is his wife saying about all this?"

The reply, "No, apparently Jesus is the complete and perfect fulfilment of God and above reproach and in no need of any help from any other souls".

Snickers, pity Jesus when this is all over. Those earthlings might think he is all of God, but they obviously have no idea how big God is. Plus Jesus is obviously a divorcee - wonder who has his wife now?

Posted by: Cheryl Va. on Sunday, 6 July 2008 at 5:45am BST

Kudos to Giles Fraser although I fear some will pillory him for raising a non-PC issue that highlights the racial issues- that will be their loss.

Posted by: ettu on Sunday, 6 July 2008 at 1:05pm BST

Maybe like to be buried under all the C of E general synod stuff and it has only been reported in the Beflast Telegraph on Saturday 5th July [I think] but ++Alan Harper's comments on gay relationships is surely a seismic shift for the C of I. The newspaper headline is "Church of Ireland may accept gay marriages". I cannot remember if it is acceptable to post URLs here but if you google _Belfast Telegraph_ and then "Church of Ireland" it should produce the story for any one who is interested.

++Alan Armagh is Primate of All Ireland and was speaking at a conference on mission in England.


Posted by: Dion on Monday, 7 July 2008 at 9:50am BST


Thanks for reminding me of this address by Archbishop Alan Harper which I had intended to link to when I had a few spare minutes. The TA article is here:

Please make any further comments on the Archbishop's address there and not here.

Posted by: Peter Owen on Monday, 7 July 2008 at 10:40am BST

"hateful "Christians" (so-called) are even worse to those OUTSIDE the Church, than within."

In my experience, such people do not count anyone as being within the Church unless they believe the same things. I'm used to having my faith denied because I am an Anglican. Now, I am getting used to other Anglicans denying my faith because I am not an Evangelical Anglican. Get used to it, those who must define themselves as pure and holy in the eyes of God do it by comparison with those they deem impure and unholy.

Posted by: Ford Elms on Monday, 7 July 2008 at 7:47pm BST
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