Comments: Synod Questions

Question 66 on 'homophobia' put by Stephen Coles, is interesting, as is the answer he receives.

The CofE comes out with some surprising stuff. I thought the exclusion of lesbian and gay persons from much of its life, was a key part of the recent goings on in the Church and AC; and that the so-called 'Covenant' process is intended to keep out the Gene Robinsons and the rest of us ?

So, to hear that they are encouraging respect for individual lives and viewpoints on ordination trainings, again leaves me in a state of confusion.

You know, I think I'd prefer a thorough-goingly anti-gay Church to this mish-mash ---then we'd all know where we REALLY stand --and could choose accordingly....

Posted by L Roberts at Friday, 20 July 2007 at 5:19pm BST

"You know, I think I'd prefer a thorough-goingly anti-gay Church to this mish-mash ---then we'd all know where we REALLY stand --and could choose accordingly...."
So say the Global South, Laurie ..... Nuance is not their strong suit either!

Posted by Martin Reynolds at Saturday, 21 July 2007 at 11:05am BST

oh dear Martin --are you saying I am in bed with them ?

It is indeed a co-incidence.

I think I wouldn't have chosen to work for the CofE had its homophobia been clearer. On the other hand, it has helped to make me who I am today; and I did meet more pro-gay than anti-gay people.

But the vicious minority can do terrible harm.

Your analysis is very helpful to me Martin. Thanks.

Will disaffected anglicans join the ranks of Quakers? (It works for me) or would acceptance be hard to take somehow ? ... (Takes some getting used to).

Posted by L Roberts at Saturday, 21 July 2007 at 5:18pm BST

I answered Merseymike on the other thread, but probably my alternative to a swear word stopped it appearing - I'm not a .... yo yo.

More seriously, why not join the Quakers? Well anyone can, but it is a different spirituality. Why not join the Unitarians? Well I was a member, and then a long time associated, and it just exhausted me in the end with its kind of unnecessary poverty of outlook.

It is not easy being in the Church of England and playing a full if local role. It was not when they didn't ordain women. The duplicity is wearing. In a little over a year's time, some of the tectonic plates might have pushed so one goes over the other, and no one is sure yet where the changes will be.

Autumn and winter next year we could have a new southern communion, bishops being conscrated by them in a rush to organise England along with the US and Canada. There'll be a few big congregations and some of the C of E bishops welcoming these incursions, and such that the Anglican Communion that remains will free itself up somewhat - so that, for example, Bishop Priddis type cases will stop appearing. These Communions might even recognise different Covenants, or one Communion not have a Covenant at all. Furthermore, the sectarians seem to have annoyed many Open Evangelicals.

At the moment the balance seems to be that the sectarians will do the walking. It could of course go the other way. Presumably then there will be many packing their suitcases.

Posted by Pluralist at Monday, 23 July 2007 at 4:10pm BST

Pluralist - still hoping to split "open" and conservative evangelicals??
....if you consider Fulcrum people (eg Dr Goddard and +Wright) to be "open", then I do not think you will see the split you hope for. They are solidly evo if you read their views.

Posted by NP at Wednesday, 25 July 2007 at 11:33am BST

Next question should be:

Is Ripon College Cuddesdon really that more outstanding than the rest, or is this a case of an in-crowd, and an old-boys' network?

The recent book 'Last Rites' by Michael Hampson characterised RCC as a place where one was often told what could not be believed but never what belief-positions were well-supported. Candidates had to define themselves in terms of what they were not and did not believe. Apart from(hurrah) in biblical studies where the dreadful thought that there might be more evidence for some positions than for others reared its head.

This is jolly odd as one would have thought that the positive and the negative were interrelated: the positions which could not be believed were such precisely because they were being elbowed out by others that could be.

This leads one to the worrying thought that perhaps the place was infected with an ideological negativity. Negative good, positive bad.

If, that is, M Hampson's thoughts were accurate. They are now 20 years out of date, I guess.

In short, if ever an Oxford theological college needed a review....

Posted by Christopher Shell at Wednesday, 25 July 2007 at 1:32pm BST

Christopher: it doesn't reflect the RCC I knew 25-23 years ago, which was a mix of all sorts arguing it out. Then again, as a married theolog, my forays into college were as sporadic as possible!

There were many things I disliked about early 80's RCC, but 'ideological negativity'? Not in my experience. There was an excessively paternalistic culture on the go at the time, which sought to de-skill everyone over the age of 22, but I don't get the impression that's your worry.

Posted by mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) at Wednesday, 25 July 2007 at 11:12pm BST

I do not hope to split Conservative and Open Evangelicals. What I do is read those on Fulcrum who take the label, and see the difference. Both Wright and Goddard have made sharp criticisms of Conservative Evangelicals in a way that make them distinct. It could well be that in any split they would be off with the splitters, though I doubt it. I don't hope, I observe.

You are the one who says what should be so and what is so, via the rule book you quote, where it seems to me that actual statements and events show something rather more complex. Your cracked record approach has a problem, for example, when the reported comments of the Archbishop of York are read.

Posted by Pluralist at Thursday, 26 July 2007 at 12:39am BST
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