Thinking Anglicans

Peter Jensen on ABC radio

ABC Radio in its Sunday Profile programme has Monica Attard interviewing the Archbishop of Sydney.

There is a full transcript here. A lot of it is about why he is against women in the episcopate.

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Matthew B
Matthew B
13 years ago

Extraordinary prevarication from Archbishop Jensen: no wonder the interviewer was baffled! Presumably he is terrified of being labelled a misogynist, but he would be better advised to speak plainly, rather than meandering around the question. He says: ‘I’m standing for the relationship as the sexes as being equal but different. I’m standing for another set of values and that’s what makes me, believing as I do about the Bible, against this development.’ What is his reasoning for this? Jensen doesn’t explain to listeners, but hides behind the ‘Equal but Different’ organisation, which he approvingly recommends. There we find the following,… Read more »

John Omani
John Omani
13 years ago

++Peter Jensen:

“…what you are saying there reflects how people are determined to view my position, not through any malice or anything like that, but because it’s so, it has become so self-evidently right that what I’m saying is nonsense and unjust.”

I’m amazed. Could this be a moment of divine revelation?

Chris Tyack
Chris Tyack
13 years ago

I’m pleasantly suprised that Peter Jensen acknowledges the sincerity, good motives and intellectual conviction of his opponents in the debate over homosexuality. How suprising, because he usually says that his opponents are unbiblical and devalue the authority of scripture. Having heard him speak in a public forum once, his opposition to gay sexual relations is based in his devotion to the classic family and to classic gender roles. It seems that these commitments determine his negative view not only of homosexual sex but also of women bishops. Jensen thinks that human relationships and community are threatened and sees the classic… Read more »

Pluralist
13 years ago

What he says about women and families and translates to episcopacy is almost worse than what he says about the gay issue. The interviewer could have sat back a bit and let him have more time to gather his own rope. I noticed that he seems to be somewhat drawing back from schism causing, so there must be a reduction of temperature around some people’s feet: “very severe loosening of the communion and new ways of being Anglican are going to have to be found in the world.” Well, they might have thought of this in the first place, without… Read more »

Ford Elms
Ford Elms
13 years ago

“Jensen thinks that human relationships and community are threatened and sees the classic family as a kind of advance-guard defence. “ Define the “classic family”. I grew up in a culture (white, rural, of European descent) where the large extended family was the norm. I can identify, and have a sense of family relationship to, my third cousins. The “classic family” as it is touted in North America actually destroyed what I know as family. The nuclear family is, to me, a deformed thing, as much a product of the modern world with its high degree of mobility that separates… Read more »

Kurt
Kurt
13 years ago

A wonderful insight into how the 19th century evangelical mind looks at the 21st century. No doubt too many flogging parsons 200 years ago produces Jensenites today.

obadiahslope
obadiahslope
13 years ago

Pluralist comments: “they might have thought of this in the first place…” . Peter Jensen did think of “this” in the first place: his view that loosening the communion ties is the way ahead for Anglicanism has been consistently expressed by him for some years now.
Despite being asked by North American parishes Sydney has held back from offering oversight – preferring that local solutions be developed. Sydney is resistant to all forms of centralism in the communion.

badman
badman
13 years ago

I must say that my reading of both the Old and New Testaments has provided me with models of the family as far removed from the “classic” married man with one wife faithful to each other for life as it is possible to imagine. Polygamy, concubinage, celibacy, renunciation of family seem far closer to “classic family” in Scripture than whatever Archbishop Jensen considers “classic”. The classic family owes more to tradition, reason and concepts of social justice (particularly social justice for women and children) than it does to Scriptural examples. Surely it is not a case of simply assuming that… Read more »

Prior Aelred
13 years ago

IIRC, even before (“false teacher”) ++Rowan was appointed ABC, My Lord of Sydney was talking about a looser WWAC & an evangelical Anglicanism centered in the Global South — (which is to say, none of this really has anything to do with poor Bishop Robinson)

Ford Elms
Ford Elms
13 years ago

“Surely it is not a case of simply assuming that the Bible agrees with one’s most cherished views?’ Oh, good heavens, no! I mean, Solomon only had one wife! And when Jesus taught that the Kingdom was more important than family, that we should actually hate our families in favour of the Kingdom, he was only joking. I mean, heterosexual marriage and 2.5 kids is ordained by God as the basic building block of society, always was, always will be. “Holy Family” means something utterly different to us Protestants, it seems. No, marriage is not something we MAY do if… Read more »

Robert Ian Williams
Robert Ian Williams
13 years ago

I told you Archbishop Jensen is a man of principle even if you do not like his theology.

You know where he stands ( unlike Rowan) and politically he speaks up for the underdog and is not tied to the establishment.

Cheryl Va. Clough
13 years ago

There’s a bit of dialogue about whether women should be heads of families and thus churches. Jensen notes that there is an “…unwillingness of modern people to actually marry and… commit and it’s an unwillingness, particularly of men – and why should they?… commit to women and families.” Yet what is a woman to do when a man abdicates his parental and husbandly responsibilities? She still has children that need to be raised and kept safe. She still needs to model prudent management and organizational skills. Such women often need God more because they have to convince their children that… Read more »

Martin Reynolds
13 years ago

A friend of mine thinks that maybe if Monica Attard interviews Akinola (and a few others) then things might work out after all ………

Ford Elms
Ford Elms
13 years ago

“you do not like his theology.” It’s not that I don’t like his theology so much as I don’t like his behaviour. His argument in this piece makes no sense: women can’t be bishops because modern day fathers don’t fit into traditional gender roles? What kind of argument is that? He refers to “Bible based Churches”, the clear implication being that those of us who are different from him, including parishes in his own diocese, are not Biblically based. What do we believe, the Necronomicon? This is a subtle form of “non-Evangelicals have no faith, and are all going to… Read more »

Christopher Shell
Christopher Shell
13 years ago

Monica Attard implies that because there are many types of family, *therefore* they are all equally good or well-suited to flourishing.

Talk about a non sequitur.

It’s a bit like saying: There are many types of women/men out there, and *therefore* they are all equally suitable to marry.

L Roberts
L Roberts
13 years ago

Peter Jensen is virtually a reformer :– PETER JENSEN: Yes it is. I think we need to say, and it’s not often said, I think that those who take a different point of view from me on this are not suggesting that we bless all expressions of homosexuality. They’re really talking about quite a limited thing. Namely they’re asking that the Church recognises the permanent union of two persons. They’re not saying that all homosexual sex is good and so forth and so on. They have a real heart for homosexual people and they wish to, they wish to make… Read more »

drdanfee
drdanfee
13 years ago

Gollum says, tricksey, tricksey, tricksey. (I’m being intellectually stunted by bed time stories?) But all fun aside, this interview with the archbishop of Sydney helps show just what is so difficult for so many of the rest of us to comprehend about this standardized conservative way of putting those issues, headship, and relationship. So far, thanks to wide ranging and successful experiments in recognizing womens’ equality, which deliberately includes recognizing equivalent domains of skill or competency, we will continue to ask: Just what, exactly, exactly, is this allegedly biblical notion, Headship? So far, the images and such which are supposed… Read more »

Pat O'Neill
Pat O'Neill
13 years ago

“Monica Attard implies that because there are many types of family, *therefore* they are all equally good or well-suited to flourishing.”

Perhaps they are not, but who are you–or Jensen–to pick and choose which are and are not?

Erika Baker
Erika Baker
13 years ago

Christopher,
couldn’t agree with you more!

The same goes for the – hypothetical – statement that “because there are many types of homosexual relationships, *therefore* they are all equally damaging or ill-suited to flourishing”

To quote you: “Talk about a non sequitur.”

Cheryl Va. Clough
13 years ago

Guffaws of laughter “There are many types of women/men out there, and *therefore* they are all equally suitable to marry.” Oh My God. Are we now going to have to pass tests as to who is or is not suitable to get married!?! Are we going to base that on skin colour? Baptism? Church attendance? Ethnic background? Affluence? Bribe fees? How about we start judging males on their cleaning and home making skills? How would the wandering Jesus or Paul shape up in this regard? What was John the Baptist’s idea of cleaning? Oh look, bug! Breakfast! Love Korach bickerers,… Read more »

Cheryl Va. Clough
13 years ago

Great posting drdanfee. The Archbishop of Melbourne recently commented that one role of prophets is to strip away veils so we can see how an elite has co-opted a system to garnish more than their fair share, usually at somebody else’s expense. I loved your concluding passage: “The Headship bargain failed, because so many ordained men failed so egregiously to support or protect. So, instead: fairness, equality, mutuality, Relationship?” The bible does just this often. God confronts the “holy” priests and rebukes them for transgressing God’s covenants and then re-establishes the covenants. Often a new layer of souls are incorporated… Read more »

Prior Aelred
13 years ago

I do think that Archbishop is genuinely trying (which I do not believe of all senior clerics in the WWAC), but it does seem to me that he confuses the ideal of the middle class Victorian family (& patriarchy) with the Gospel of Jesus Christ (which seems to undercut all of the above, IMHO).

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