Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 20 April 2022

The Guardian In pictures: Good Friday around the world

Martyn Percy Modern Church Testing Trials and Egregious Errors: Some Good Friday Reflections
The Revolutionary Seeds of Easter

Hattie McInerney ViaMedia.News The Invisible Privilege of Being Voiceless in the Church: Creating a Platform for Bisexual Christians

Colin Coward Unadulterated Love Radical New Christian Inclusion – the Silence of the Bishops

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Richard W. Symonds
1 month ago

Martyn Percy: “The system set up to deal with abuse is systematically abusive. It is harmful, and dangerous. The system is riddled with favouritism, nepotism, incompetence and scapegoating”

Wow!

Sam Norton
1 month ago

A powerful piece from Percy: “I am not asking for protests or for rebellion. I call instead for quiet revolution, reform and loyal dissent… We should not tolerate it one bit longer. We should instead seek a proper, deep and cleansing spiritual renewal. But first we may need some proper public exorcism within our institution before we can even get this work started.” I agree that we need to have a public act of repentance – which might have the effect of an exorcism (those are best kept private) – but I simply want to ask: how? Until there is a change… Read more »

Simon Dawson
Simon Dawson
Reply to  Sam Norton
1 month ago

A powerful piece indeed, but Percy is doomed to fail in what he calls for. The problem with ““I am not asking for protests or for rebellion. I call instead for quiet revolution, reform and loyal dissent” is that loyal dissent can be ignored easily by those in power. It is only noisy disruptive protest that gets noticed and demands attention. From the Bristol Bus Boycott to Nelson Mandela’s South Africa, experience tells us that those in power will not willingly choose to debate and give up their power. Change only happens when campaigners have created a situation where those with… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Simon Dawson
Richard W. Symonds
Reply to  Sam Norton
1 month ago

“Not to speak is to speak; not to act is to act” ~ Dietrich Bonhoeffer

The deafening silence and inaction from ‘the purple circle’ [and beyond it] will leave a nasty stain on many a good reputation. For some, it will leave a permanent scar.

What right have they to keep their silence?

Last edited 1 month ago by Richard W. Symonds
Dave
Dave
Reply to  Richard W. Symonds
1 month ago

Thank you to Sam, Simon and Richard for those helpful comments.

Change only happens when campaigners have created a situation where those with the power have more to lose by not talking to you than by talking.” How can this actually be done?

Rod Gillis
Rod Gillis
1 month ago

The photos of Good Friday worldwide (Guardian) brought to mind a quip from a colleague, “We’re not happy simply being washed in the blood of the lamb. We have to roll around in it and splash it all over everyone else.” Too bad ostentatious public self flagellation on Good Friday does not translate into more solidarity with Jesus by making praxis on human rights abuses more of a priority year round. The photos suggest that much Good Friday observance is basically human suffering as a theme park for the pious, no?

Stanley Monkhouse
Reply to  Rod Gillis
1 month ago

Quite so, Rod. Similar to the point of the Thomas story – unless we are prepared to look full in the face at the wounds of the world and get our hands dirty dealing with them, we are merely hypocritical poseurs,

Unreliable Narrator
Unreliable Narrator
Reply to  Rod Gillis
1 month ago

What do you know about the “praxis on human rights abuses” of the people pictured in The Guardian? How are you able to diagnose the solidarity with Jesus of people you know next to nothing about?

Rod Gillis
Rod Gillis
Reply to  Unreliable Narrator
1 month ago

Good question. As a lifelong observant Christian, one who spent decades planning and leading Good Friday services, intentionally trying to overcome the often maudlin popular piety it engenders, I know a thing or two. Critical social commentary on orchestrated pubic events is always in order. My critique is directed toward systemic issues. Good Friday is often characterized by a kind of passive aggressive Christian chauvinism. The New Testament anthology, especially the passion narratives, exhibits an anti-Judaism bias. Outdoor European ‘passion plays’ have had antisemitic entanglements. The cross has a long history as a symbol of imperialism, conquest, colonialism. There is… Read more »

Dave
Dave
1 month ago

Martyn Percy writes (as Richard points out) “I am not asking for protests or for rebellion. I call instead for quiet revolution, reform and loyal dissent. Our refusal to put up with the poor leadership in the Church of England that has given us this culture and ecclesial politics, and expects us to live with it. We should not tolerate it one bit longer. We should instead seek a proper, deep and cleansing spiritual renewal….” Excellent words…however… Why are we not ‘asking for protests or for rebellion’ alongside spiritual reunion? I fear that in ‘Thinking Anglicans’ we will, understandably, read Martyn Percy, Colin… Read more »

Richard W. Symonds
Reply to  Dave
1 month ago

Maybe all the bishops should now offer their resignations to the Supreme Governor of the Church of England Her Majesty The Queen – just as all the Chilean bishops offered their resignations to the Pope?

Dave
Dave
Reply to  Richard W. Symonds
1 month ago

I can’t see that happening, Richard!

No, I firmly believe grassroots challenge, and ‘calling out’ – speaking the truth to power – is needed.

Richard W. Symonds
Reply to  Dave
1 month ago

“Speaking the truth to power”?

As Noam Chomsky says: “Power knows the truth already, and is busy concealing it”

Dave
Dave
Reply to  Richard W. Symonds
1 month ago

Paradoxically, perhaps, isn’t that also speaking the truth to power … and beyond!

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