Comments: Opinion - 28 June 2017

Colin's comments again reflect the thoughts of many of us. We are human beings, not academic objects.
For some of us we are a long way on our journey into God, and His Love and welcome is far more inviting then the cold , hard mind of the two Archbishops of the Church of England.
Surely it is not beyond the power of the House of Bishops to speak their true feelings, and together reflect the true feelings of the members of the Church of England. Or are the Archbishops dictators in that house, and the Bishops afraid to speak their true mind? It seems so.
The Bishops of the Church of England have only to look north of the border to the Scottish Episcopal Church to see what can be accomplished when proper conversations are held. Then through the synods of the church a positive outcome obtained. Allowing diversity to walk together in love and understanding.
Let us remember that June Osborne in in her report bearing her name gave the Church of England the chance to move forward many years ago, but fear stopped it in its tracks.

Fr John Emlyn

Posted by Fr John Harris-White at Thursday, 29 June 2017 at 10:24am BST

Re: Colin Coward's, article bravo zulu for the author. "This is to me unbelievable patronising and regressive. It is happening because the bishops want to exert total control over the process. They are victims of the church’s culture and clan wars, and we LGBTI people are collateral damage."

Pastoral care is grounded in the notion of nurturing in service of care for others. However, in the church invoking the mantra of pastoral care can be like invoking the Holy Spirit i.e. the intention is to cover a multitude of sins--something that is not often discerned even by the well meaning.

There is a constant requirement to make certian that what is billed as pastoral care is not simply its opposite i.e. a form of manipulation, one in this instance intended to place the priority of the church over people.

The more vested one becomes in the insititution the more difficult such a temptation becomes to resist. Eventually it can become an irresistible reflex.

It may help to remember that the institutional church, its policies and dogmatic theory, are among the chief reasons people require remedial pastoral care in the first place.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Thursday, 29 June 2017 at 1:27pm BST

I'll never look at my cassock in the same light ever again. From now on it shall be unto me like workman's overalls, pit-man's protective work gear or even Michael Foot's famous Remembrance Sunday donkey jacket.

Posted by Father David at Friday, 30 June 2017 at 5:26am BST

Thinking about things sartorial, I read in this morning's Times that Speaker Bercow has relaxed the rule on male MPs being obliged to wear ties in the chamber of the House of Commons! Is this the end of civilisation as we know it? Certainly an indication that the country has gone further to the dogs. As Vice-President of SEONS (The Society for the Elimination of the Open-Neck Shirt) I would urge a rethink of this retrograde step. Something similar occurred in the 1960s when bishops dropped their gaiters under Ramsey and look where that has led the Church of England.

Posted by Father David at Friday, 30 June 2017 at 7:40am BST

This is my cassock. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
My cassock is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life.
Without me, my cassock is useless. Without my cassock, I am useless.

Posted by another Fr. David at Friday, 30 June 2017 at 1:52pm BST

Fr David, as a priest then its dog collar on all those occasions where a formal tie is required. Otherwise an open neck shirt is for very casual wear. My husband works for the Scottish Government, and unlike some of his contemporaries always dresses in suit and tie. In fact his ties are a source of interest to his colleagues, both male and female. He has a great collection, and each day a decision has to be made as to which tie is worn.
Clothes maketh the man.

Fr John Emlyn

Posted by Fr John E. Harris-White at Friday, 30 June 2017 at 2:33pm BST

As a curate in 1962, my cassock was the dress for the day, except on my day off.
We were reminded in college by Archbishop Ramsey we were the only men allowed to wear a dress[cassock], and loiter about our parish.
In retirement I still have a very long black mack which covered my cassock on wet days, and is still comfortable in a very wet Scotland.

Fr John Emlyn

Posted by Fr John E. Harris-White at Friday, 30 June 2017 at 4:17pm BST

Just a bit unsure about Stephen Kuhrt's article. I know what he's getting at, but there is something legitimate about the protection of the Church as soon as we see it as the protection of those who are associated with it - the plebs sancta dei, the broken, human, faithful who deserve not to be tainted by association with a completely corrupt (as opposed to a fallible) institution.

It's a so-and-so of a circle to square (or vice-versa), but I wonder whether his article falls into the trap of seeing 'the Church' in terms of its privileged rather than its shop floor members?

Posted by David Rowett at Friday, 30 June 2017 at 10:12pm BST

Re another Fr. David, "Without me, my cassock is useless. Without my cassock, I am useless."

Just catching up with this now. This is an hilarious comment. I wish I had a prize to give you. I'll bet Stanley Kubrick would have been amused. Well done sir.

Posted by Rod Gillis at Monday, 3 July 2017 at 1:27am BST
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