Comments: A post-secular age?

"This is a place where we are not afraid to reason and we are not ashamed to worship and adore. May God bless you Giles as you set about your new work in the name of Jesus Christ, the very image of God. Amen" - Bp. Richard Chartres -

In this final paragraph of his sermon, at the installation of Canon Giles Fraser into his new role at Saint Paul's Cathedral in the heart of the City of London, Bishop Richard is bringing together two aspects of what he expects Giles to provide through his ministry at the Cathedral:

1. The application of sweet Reason, whereby he can continue in his task of reminding the Church of it's duty to bring the 3rd leg of the Anglican genius into play, in it's consideration of the place of Scripture and Tradition in the exciting contemporary world. From his performance so far - especially at St. Mary's, Putney Bridge - Giles has demonstrated his readiness to engage with the Church on issues of gender and sexuality, where we are still struggling with how best to live with the reality of gays and women in ministry.

2. In a recent article in 'Church Times', Giles reflected on the place of Sung Evensong in the round of services, wherein he felt able to be spiritually revived by the sheer beauty of the worship. In his devotion to the Eucharist during his time at Putney, Giles has also enabled his parishioners to enter into the efficacy of the presence of Christ in the sacrament of his love.
His preaching and teaching gifts will be welcome as part of the mission to the City.

These two factors augur well for the new Canon of Saint Paul's Cathedral. May his ministry be richly blessed, and his advocacy of justice and mercy extended through his new post in the Church

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Monday, 28 September 2009 at 12:53am BST

The gloss on the bishop's sermon followed by the posted reader comments is an interesting case study, at least.

Denying God? Well, depends, doesn't it. Even the OT prophets urged us to be constant, humble pilgrims lest we inadvertently fall into worshipping something null-deity as deity. Far, far, far easier to do - worshipping the idols, than not; as our case seems clear in any available age for which we have good cultural-religious documentation. Then on to Reason - surely the single domain in which most of today's crisis-oriented conservatisms fail most egregiously; along with a busy host of alleged cultural-economic alternatives - business as usual, consumerism, media-festooned entertainments among them.

Installing idols as our gods, then indulging our deities and ourselves with these special and especially irrational religious privileges and powers; the despoiling of planet earth and the lively diminishment of humanity - seems, well, nigh inevitable. The real spiritual struggle is not limited to the market-in-fights among the Bible As Idol, wrestling in a happy smack-down with each and all the rest?

If only our religious institutions could proclaim a God and Jesus that did not contribute to, support, and even urge violating our planet and ourselves and other people, as our Apocalyptic Struggle to Doomsday-Revelation decision moments.

Alas. Not even Rowan Williams is proclaiming that sort of God and that sort of Jesus these days, as we rush to comfort and accommodate the various push-pulls of all the Anglican Rights Possible.

Nobody so far most active and most vocal on the Anglican Rightist Spectrums seems or sounds like any sort of leader - against planetary degradation, and of course, against the subjection-degradation of humankind, too.

Following Jesus in the best of times is hard enough. Following Jesus in these difficulties now calls forth the Emergent Churches who are weary of both dominant holier than thou tropes.

Alas. Lord have mercy.

Posted by drdanfee at Monday, 28 September 2009 at 8:22pm BST

I am sure there is something I should learn from what you write, drdanfee; but I haven't the faintest idea what it is is. What on earth does your post mean, perhaps in one sentence?

Posted by M. Mouse at Monday, 28 September 2009 at 10:57pm BST
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