Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Opinion - 8 November 2017

Lizzie Lowrie Saltwater and Honey A Letter to the Churches

Tim Crane The Times Literary Supplement Join the club - what religion is and isn’t.

Richard Mammana Mockingbird Praying Twice

Colin Coward Unadulterated Love By what authority?

Posted by Peter Owen on Wednesday, 8 November 2017 at 10:00am GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Opinion

Congratulations to Lizzie Lowrie and Richard Mammana on their excellent pieces. Thoughtful, moving and well written.

Posted by: Janet Fife on Wednesday, 8 November 2017 at 3:47pm GMT

Another interesting and thoughtful article by Fr Colin Coward. One wonders by what authority Fr Colin would justify a change in the definition of marriage, for instance. Tom Wright, who he quotes with admiration, warns of the dangers of same-sex marriage and compares such a change with Nazi Germany. Whilst Fr Coward may agree on Dr Wright's definition of "by what authority", it seems clear their authority reaches widely different conclusions.

Posted by: FrDavidH on Wednesday, 8 November 2017 at 5:16pm GMT

Richard Mammana’s piece moves me intensely. How could it not move anyone? I recommend to anyone interested Mark Stibbe’s “Home at last: freedom from boarding school pain.” Our two boys boarded as choristers at Southwell and Ripon cathedral choir schools for three and four years respectively in the late 1980s and early 1990s—not because we wanted a cheap way into a fee paying school, as many parents said they did, but because I wanted them to have what I thought I would have liked myself—exposure to good music and a good musical training. They certainly had that, no question. To my knowledge, neither suffered physical or sexual abuse at either school. Staff were almost universally pleasant and supportive of our peculiar circumstances (I’d just taken a post in Dublin, so it suited us for the boys to stay until coming to secondary school living at what by then was home). But I find it well nigh impossible to forgive myself for inflicting on them the emotional damage of separation from family of which Mark Stibbe has written so eloquently and Richard Mammana so heartbreakingly. As it happens, one seemed to enjoy himself, but he died two years ago of heart disease so I can’t ask him, and the other shows no signs of damage that can’t be put down to taking after his father, poor man. But I know this: I have not yet recovered from the emotional damage of separation. I hope that residential choir schools are asking themselves searching questions. Indeed—and never in a million years did I ever think I’d say this—I wonder if the church has any business whatsoever in the maintenance of such establishments. There are several English cathedrals that manage well enough without residential choir schools—including, now, both Southwell and Ripon.

Posted by: Stanley Monkhouse on Wednesday, 8 November 2017 at 6:44pm GMT

FrDavidH, I was quoting Tom Wright, yes, but not necessarily with admiration - with a degree of gratitude, possibly - and on this occasion but not on others.

Posted by: Colin Coward on Thursday, 9 November 2017 at 10:00am GMT


Anybody can have an occasional good day: Colin C clearly caught the former Bishop of Durham on one of those.

Colin is more gracious than I am. I would suggest that anyone who can be as offensive as to equate equal marriage to the fascist gangsters who sent gay men to the concentration camps debases anything he might say or write by association, no matter how good a scholar he may or may not be.

Posted by: Fr Andrew on Thursday, 9 November 2017 at 12:21pm GMT
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