on Saturday, 6 March 2021 at 11.00 am by Peter Owen
categorised as Opinion
Helen King ViaMedia.News Independence & Safeguarding: Marking Our Own Homework?
Simon Butler ViaMedia.News The Idolatry of Being “Sound”
Stephen Parsons Surviving Church Christ Church and Dysfunctional Group Dynamics
RE: Helen King ViaMedia.News Independence & Safeguarding: Marking Our Own Homework? Helen King ends her article: “As for those who have already suffered at the hands of church abusers, listening, repentance and redress must be prioritized” May I suggest as a priority a “Day of Reconciliation”, as recommended by the Shemmings Report 2019 – an officially-recognised Day within the Diocese of Chichester and beyond it. This excellent report appears to have been almost totally disregarded by the Church of England hierarchy: “We would like to commend a suggestion made by Bernie which is to hold an official Day of Reconciliation across the… Read more »
Simon Butler has here issued a much-needed corrective to the agenda of the emerging self-styled ‘Orthodox Anglican’ folks who have arrogated to themselves authority to judge what is, and what is not, acceptable in the Church’s teaching about matters of gender and sexuality – not to mention the ‘propriety’ of a conservative, selective way of interpreting the Bible. The object of idolatry can sometimes be the worship of ‘what has gone before’ in the way of hermeneutical determination. This is almost tantamount to saying that the Holy Spirit ceased being active in the the task of revelation with the publication… Read more »
I enjoyed Simon’s article and, as I said in the comments on Via Media, it made me think of the character in one of Susan Howatch’s Starbridge novels who says that one of the most important phrases to remember in the spiritual life is “I can be wrong.”
It’s easy enough to admit “I can be wrong” in the spiritual life. It takes real moral courage to admit “I was wrong” – especially in public life.
Do you find it easy to admit “I can be wrong,” Richard? I sure don’t!
A gesture of reconciliation – like ‘I was wrong’ – will not come from the Chichester Cathedral hierarchy [eg the Dean] unless the likes of Archbishop Welby and Bishop Warner admit ‘I was wrong’, especially regarding Bishop Bell. These powerful people [who have a lot to lose if they admit such wrongdoing] are perpetuating abuse by their moral cowardice – especially an abuse of justice.
There’s a saying in U.S. politics: “Nobody ever got elected by saying ‘I don’t know.'” Similarly, nobody has ever maintained authority by saying “I was wrong”…more’s the pity.
Simon Butler’s article focuses on one aspect of “soundness”. I wonder if those within the Church of England who teach that there was no bodily resurrection, that Christ is not the only way to the Father, that Christ needed to repent of his racist and misogynistic views, and who refuse to say the Creeds would be thought of as sound. It would be good to widen the discussion.