Friday, 17 September 2010

Baroness Varsi speaks to Anglican bishops

The Conservative Party has published the full text of the address that Baroness Varsi gave to the College of Bishops on Wednesday. (Some Scottish, Welsh, and Irish bishops were also present.)

Read it all at Sayeeda Warsi: The importance of faith to life in Britain.

There has been a lot of media coverage of this, and follow-up appearances by Lady Varsi on various television news programmes.

Bishop Nick Baines who was present at the speech, has commented on his blog, see Kasper, Warsi & Wei.

Ekklesia has a report of the BBC Newsnight coverage, see Churches should not misuse public service ethos, says bishop.

And today, the Tablet has an article by David Cameron Place of faith in British life.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 17 September 2010 at 1:08pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Church of England

I heard Varsi on the news yesterday and find her attitude and tone very off-putting.

Being lectured by the Tories, just as they start on another spree of destruction, and attacks on the poorest in society, does not commend the spirit of Jesus to me, or of religion generally.

Or of Mohammed pbuh

Posted by: Laurence Roberts on Friday, 17 September 2010 at 2:22pm BST

"The College of bishops"? Are they not a bench collectively? "College" sounds very modern Roman, which doubtless some prelates would like...

Posted by: Fr Mark on Friday, 17 September 2010 at 3:45pm BST

Yes, College of Bishops. That is the term now used by the CofE to describe a gathering that includes all the suffragans.

The term Bench is reserved for the group of all diocesans, and a small number of elected suffragans, who constitute what is otherwise known as the House of Bishops. That is the body with synodical power.

Posted by: Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 17 September 2010 at 6:02pm BST

Yes,'College' is the recently introduced and unnecessary term, adopted to give an RC touch to things, and part of the gradual and unnecessary self - aggrandising of bishops in the Anglican Communion in general, and now infecting the C of E. There is nothing specially Christian about it, and it puts distance between bishops and other ministers and members.

It is meant to.

Posted by: Laurence Roberts on Friday, 17 September 2010 at 8:48pm BST

Here in the States we used "House" for the Bishops...but that would be strange for such to be used in the UK.

Posted by: evensongjunkie on Saturday, 18 September 2010 at 2:13am BST

Baroness Varsi is surely right when she indicates that faith communities do need the respect of government agencies. But that's presuming that faith communities are not practising unjust or sectarian aims and objectives in and against a pluralist society, which is what most countries are today.

Jesus did once say: "Render unto Caesar that which belongs to Ceasar". And part of Caesar's dutry to her/his subjects is to so administer the law as to avoid discrimination on account of any person's race, religion or ethnic background. When any Faith Community tries to enforce rules and regulations which militate against a person's democratic freedom; then 'Caesar' must rule.

Theocratic states can be a dangerous inhibitor of human rights and the freedom to exercise one's own personal conscience - which is God-given.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Saturday, 18 September 2010 at 10:24am BST
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