Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Opinion - 14 March 2018

Jayne Ozanne ViaMedia.News The Slow Death of Patriarchy

Mark Woods Christian Today Are conservative evangelicals more likely to protect child abusers?

Jeremy Morris ViaMedia.News Church on the Ropes…

Stephen Parsons Surviving Church IICSA Monday and Tuesday – Reflections on ‘Harm Awareness’

Posted by Peter Owen on Wednesday, 14 March 2018 at 11:00am GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Opinion

I'm going to wait until there's a more detailed article about what Rowan Williams said today than the fairly short article in the Guardian. But on the face of it, he's conflating paedophilia with homosexuality, and saying that an inevitable consequence of gay people no longer being oppressed is that people like him are more tolerant of paedophilia. No, it doesn't make sense to me either.

Posted by: Interested Observer on Wednesday, 14 March 2018 at 10:02pm GMT

Interested Observer,
the link to today's transcript of IICSA is here

The exchange reported in the Daily Telegraph is on pages 142-144.

Posted by: Erika Baker on Wednesday, 14 March 2018 at 10:36pm GMT

Thanks, Erica. It's somewhat incoherent. Can anyone untangle:

"it won't do to talk about sexual problems of the clergy as if they were something that were the clergy's problems"

I'm struggling to imagine how "the (abstract noun) of (concrete noun)" and "(concrete noun)'s (abstract noun)" can ever be both on the one hand meaningful and on the other hand NOT exact synonyms.

Posted by: Interested Observer on Wednesday, 14 March 2018 at 11:13pm GMT

Re: The Jayne Ozanne article on the subject of church patriarchy, folks may be interested in the MU delegation to the UN Commission on the Status of Women. The delegation of Mothers' Union and Anglican Communion includes members from Sudan, Canada, Democratic Republic of Congo and Ghana. The focus is on women in rural societies.

Posted by: Rod Gillis on Thursday, 15 March 2018 at 2:37am GMT

G.B. Shaw is supposed to have said, 'The right word is a power and lends definiteness to the action.' I find Stephen Parsons' term helpful when it comes to what we are seeing in the IICSA hearings - and in some of the debate around them. Bishops, archbishops, officials almost all seem unaware - and sometimes unconcerned - about the enormous harm done to those who are abused.

Rowan Williams spoke yesterday of the abusing priest who had spoken to him and subsequently committed suicide. Understandably he was profoundly affected by that, but he gave it as a reason why he was reluctant to enforce disciplinary measures on abusing clergy. Doe he not realise that victims also frequently commit suicide?

Many of these senior churchmen also seem uncomfortable when questioned by female lawyers - and very good those lawyers are, too. Martin Warner yesterday kept looking away from Fiona Scolding and answering to the bench behind her; Rowan Williams looked uncomfortable and waffled; Nicholas Reade this morning is belligerent, evasive, defensive and plaintive by turns. Jayne is right about the patriarchy. These hearings are showing it up for what it is.

What is standing out is the very poor quality of much of the leadership we have had. Of course, we are not seeing the good examples in these hearings and we must be mindful of that. All the same, the Church is being put in a very poor light. What is obvious to much of the population - that the vulnerable should be protected, abusers punished, and crimes reported - seems not to have occurred to many of our leaders.

Posted by: Janet Fife on Thursday, 15 March 2018 at 12:39pm GMT

Interested Observer

In distinguishing the problems of the clergy from the clergy's problems we may have to do as Luther was accused of doing and add the word "alone".

I think ++Williams meant that if a priest is experiencing personal issues (possibly including inappropriate feelings) then, although he deserves support, with his problem, the Church has to recognise it is not a problem for him alone because of the possible effect on others. In the same way an airline cannot treat a suicidal pilot as an employee welfare issue.

The sexual problems of the clergy cannot be talked of as the clergy's problems alone.

Posted by: T Pott on Thursday, 15 March 2018 at 2:37pm GMT

It certainly seems as if the questioner is conflating homosexuality with pedophilia. Urgh. When the victims are girls, does the questioner conflate heterosexuality and pedophilia?

Posted by: Cynthia on Friday, 16 March 2018 at 4:29am GMT

T Pott Just caught up with your comment here with I find very helpful. I do not think ++Rowan is conflating anything though I agree it sounds perilously close to that. But while we think that will be missing what he was actually trying to say - which I think you have identified and helpfully commented further on.

Posted by: David Runcorn on Thursday, 22 March 2018 at 3:53pm GMT
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