Simon Rundell 2a
Church of England

C of E priest says Labour's anti-Semitism is a right-wing plot, and Tories are racist

 

“Best wait for the vitriolic onslaught,” tweeted Fr Simon Rundell, when he was asked politely and courteously if he would like to add anything or clarify his assertion that Labour’s anti-Semitism is a fiction of the right-wing press, and that Conservatives are racist. “I never read your blog anymore, but you have the followers & the indignation,” he explained, seemingly preferring terse vitriol with a hint of indignation to the sort of measured civility one might expect from a Christian minister and curer of souls. So, one treads carefully with this post. Fr Simon’s preference is to block those who question him (no matter how courteously), and then to whip up his Twitter followers in… well, vitriol and indignation. But perhaps it is vitriol and indignation merely to point this out? Perhaps one ought simply to convey the facts, if it is possible to do so without indignation.

Fr Simon Rundell is a “Progressive, radical Anglocatholic Parish iPriest” (that is how he describes himself: presumably it isn’t vitriolic to point this out). Yesterday, he tweeted this:

rundell tweet 17

Please note that he didn’t merely RT a comment: he explicitly endorsed this extract as “perceptive comment”, and expressed admiration for the author’s “insight”. The author says the Conservative Party is racist, and adduces as evidence for this a quotation from campaign literature used in the constituency of Smethwick in the 1964 General Election. The author also believes that Labour’s current problem with anti-Semitism isn’t a problem at all: those who believe it is are being “taken for a ride by our right-wing press”: it is, in short, a right-wing plot to smear the Labour Party. The evidence adduced for this is a reference to Palestinian children as “cockroaches” after “Israel bombed their school”, and a reluctance to comment on “the atrocities carried out in the name of Zionism”.

Setting aside the rather abundant evidence that Jeremy Corbyn appears to grasp the oppression of every minority except Jews; and the burgeoning dossier of anti-Semitism within the Labour Party, could someone please source which right-wing British newspaper referred to Palestinian schoolchildren as “cockroaches” after Israel bombed their school? Do, please, feel free to tell us in the comment thread: it would be an appalling dehumanisation if one did, but it isn’t immediately searchable on Google. Didn’t the right-wing British press report Israel’s bombardment of Gaza? Didn’t they cover, day after day, the appalling suffering and bloodshed? Didn’t they print pictures of the ruins and rubble of homes, hospitals and schools? Do, please, feel free to enlighten us in the comment thread, and name/shame those who didn’t think to make this news.

The only recent media reference to cockroaches in the British press appears to be an abhorrent remark made by professional contrarian Katie Hopkins on asylum seekers and economic migrants. What is this “perceptive” author otherwise referring to? If his insights are so admirable, please would someone explain his perceptions to those of us who are weak in understanding. And please do so patiently and courteously: there is no need at all for vitriol and indignation.

It isn’t clear why Fr Simon Rundell thinks that Katie Hopkins speaks for the Conservative Party, or even why she is considered representative of the right-wing press. He may say it’s the author who does so, but Fr Simon frames the quotation with the words “perceptive”, “insight” and “admire”, and that amounts to a fairly robust endorsement. Nor is it immediately clear why a 50-year-old piece of (unofficial?) election literature referring rather disgracefully to having “a nigger for a neighbour” establishes that the contemporary Conservative Party is racist. Fr Simon Rundell clarified this: “…but such prejudices still run deep,” he tweeted. “Remember Cheltenham,” he added, insensible to the possibility that John Taylor may have been a victim far more of his own laziness and incompetence than the colour of his skin.

But Fr Simon went further, and said the Conservative Party’s refusal to admit 3,000 unaccompanied refugee children, mostly from France, is the “heir” to Smethwick. It isn’t immediately clear how the reasoned position of not admitting child refugees from the safe countries of Europe is “heir” to “If you want a nigger for a neighbour”. Perhaps someone might explain (patiently and courteously) to those of us who are a bit dim of wit and slow of learning.

Eschewing allegations of Labour’s anti-Semitism completely, Fr Simon Rundell – an ordained minister in the Church of England – smears the entire modern Conservative Party – the party democratically elected to govern – as the true racists, based on a 50-year-old flyer and the party’s current policy on refugees and economic migrants. When he was asked to withdraw and apologise for this, he preferred instead to quibble over the term “modern Conservative”, insisting that it is an oxymoron. He appears to be prejudiced against Conservatism, and quite ignorant of conservatism (or oblivious to the distinction). But perhaps it is vitriolic to point this out? Is it indignant to ask if this is vitriolic? Are there any modern Conservative Party members who would not now balk at the 1964 Smethwick election literature with disgust? Are there any who actually applaud the term “cockroaches” when applied to a human being, let alone children?

Fr Simon Rundell is a card-carrying member of the Labour Party and an ardent supporter of Jeremy Corbyn. Indeed, this morning he threatened to resign from the Labour Party should there be any ‘politicking’ to oust their elected leader. When attention is drawn (reasonably and dispassionately) to his political affiliation as a possible cause of his anti-Tory prejudice (or theo-philosophical simplicity), he takes it as a personal onslaught: “You attacked me because of my Party membership, because of my RT and because of your inflated sense of self-importance,” he tweeted graciously, evidently oblivious to the numerous Labour Party members who receive not infrequent approbation on this blog (and, indeed, with whom any thinking Conservative could [and does] work together for the common good). “I didn’t realise to be Anglican dictated the way I vote,” he jabbed sarcastically, despite nothing so crass ever having been suggested (or even believed). But ad hom derision serves its deflecting purpose: Labour Party anti-Semitism is swamped by pious contempt.

He then tweeted that he wanted to “call a truce” as he had a homily to write and needed “to focus on the Good News of Jesus”; the inference being that he was being distracted by a racist, inflated, self-important Tory who is manifestly preoccupied with the bad news of Satan. This wasn’t an unreasonable request, so he was (courteously) bidden farewell. No vitriol. No indignation. But he then tweeted (without including a Twitter handle – ie, covertly) a reference to “Pseud Cranmer”, with an expectation of impending “vitriolic onslaught”. If surreptitiously whipping up one’s Twitter followers is Fr Simon’s concept of “truce”, it isn’t immediately clear where he derives his understanding of peace, grace and brotherly love.

Nor is it clear how any Conservative can feel comfortable worshipping in his church(es). If there are any under the pastoral aegis of the Roborough Team Ministry, perhaps they might get in touch and explain what they think about Fr Simon’s assertion that current Tory policy is heir to “If you want a nigger for a neighbour”. Perhaps some of the (currently) 27 high-profile Labour supporters who have made it clear that their party does indeed have a problem with anti-Semitism might comment on Fr Simon’s assertion that it is all a fabrication of the right-wing press.

Fr Simon Rundell boasts that he is “wildly, rabidly inclusive”. Maybe his theology of inclusion and mission praxis extend more readily to tolerance of Labour-supporting anti-Semites than they do to Tories? But perhaps it is indignant to make such an observation – or vitriolic even to suggest it.

  • Ha! So, the chappie squeeled for safe space and proceeded to launch creaky verbal missiles from its midst and from behind the skirts of his religion. I could swear I’ve seen this somewhere else, just can’t remember where…..

  • carl jacobs

    There is a fine line between courting Muslim voters and anti-Semitism. This is Labour’s dilemma. It can only go so far in rooting out this problem.

    This is also why Europe is looking increasingly dangerous for Jews.

    • Martin

      Carl

      And in supporting organisations that are explicitly anti-semitic Corbyn is anti-semitic

  • pobjoy

    Maybe Anglo-Catholics need to consider their position, especially as
    they have signed assent to the Thirty-Nine Articles, but teach against
    their ‘plain meaning’. They cannot be considered Christians at all, and
    it is absurd that any consider them so.

    • Martin

      And of course, by calling himself ‘Father’ he is clearly going against Jesus’ explicit words:

      But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Christ. The greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.
      (Matthew 23:8-12 [ESV])

      • pobjoy

        Quite so. What is more, he has no more authority to append this title than the menial who stitched his skullcap. He’s a rebel, eminently fit for what Moses prescribed for rebels, since he wantonly applies Mosaic principle.

        The Thirty-Nine Articles, in their original Latin, make the distinction between the Anglican concept of ‘priest’ and the Roman concept of ‘priesthood’ very clear. It refers to de ordinatione Presbyterorum, the ordination of presbyters, or elders, who have no spiritual authority beyond that of the elders in the Israel of Moses. In Israel, the sacerdotal role was ‘a shadow of what was to come’, in Paul’s words. It was pre-figurement of Christ, whose own priesthood totally abolished all pretence of human priesthood, once and forever, if the New Testament is truth. Whereas, in the Articles, the Roman concept is described in pagan terms: vulgo dicebatur sacerdotem offerre Christum in remissionem poenae aut culpae, the claim of Rome to offer Christ in remission for guilt and punishment. Any Roman plebeian under Julius Casar would have recognised that principle, less the reference to Christ.

        So this appalling man is not only unchristian, he is actively antichrist, one of those ‘denying the the Master who bought them’ (2 Pe 2:1).

      • Albert

        Says St Paul I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel 1 Corinthians 4 .15.

        It would appear that your interpretation of Matthew 23 is not that of scripture.

        BTW, do you have teachers in your congregations?

        • pobjoy

          How can a person who calls self-contradictory writing ‘Sacred Scripture’ be sane?

          • Albert

            Quite.

          • pobjoy

            So make an appointment, first thing.

          • Albert

            I never said it was self-contradictory. It’s self-contradictory on Martin’s interpretation.

          • pobjoy

            It’s self-contradictory on Martin’s interpretation.

            May we see an explanation? Or are you actually insane?

          • carl jacobs

            Pobjoy

            This is a serious question. Are you on the autism spectrum? I don’t want to treat you unjustly if you are, but your responses can be so wildly disproportionate that it makes me wonder. Albert is many things. He is not insane. This is an old Catholic/Protestant disagreement. It can be fought out with a modicum of decency. Hence my question. Your posts have made me ask this question of myself from the first day you accused me without cause of lying.

          • Albert

            Thank you Carl.

          • carl jacobs

            Pobjoy chose not to reply. I have done my due dillgence. So I will take his non-response as a “No” and simply consign his bad behavior to rudeness and arrogance.

          • Albert

            He’s an attention seeking troll. If you want to see what he’s about, have a look up the thread to see our interchange over the last few minutes. He doesn’t advance any argument, and we would be better off ignoring him, so he goes away.

          • Little Black Censored

            Pobjoy has given ample evidence that he is an idiot, and that arguing with him is not worth the trouble.

          • carl jacobs

            Trying to be charitable here …

          • Albert

            There are so many interpretations! Are we to assume that when Jesus says “Call no man your father” he means “don’t even call your dad ‘father’?” That would be the literal meaning, but it would also be very odd, as well as rendering Jesus’ own teaching contradictory (e.g. Luke 15.21). So you tell me, what does Jesus mean when he says “Call no man your teacher”? The answer strikes me as obvious and the answer can be accepted by Catholics and Protestants alike. And having found an answer to that question, your objections disappears.

          • pobjoy

            Are we to assume that Jesus means “Call no man your father” means “don’t even call your dad ‘father’?”

            That has been the remarkable response/excuse of very many Catholics.

            what does Jesus mean when he says “Call no man your teacher”?

            He means that no mere man should be one’s guide, mentor or guru. Teachers, didactic persons who explain, are not only permitted, they are provided by the Holy Spirit, in the NT. Of course, there are false teachers, also, mentioned in the NT.

          • Albert

            That is exactly the answer I would give. Can you not see that that applies to the other words in the passage?

          • pobjoy

            That is exactly the answer I would give.

            Of course. Catholicism waits to see what Christians say, then parrot.

          • Albert

            Isn’t it obvious that that was the interpretation I was hoping you would give? I.e. I already held it. Now, are you going to explain why one rule fits in one place, but not in the next line, or are you just going to carry on being abusive and hope no one notices you don’t have an argument any more?

          • pobjoy

            one rule fits in one place, but not in the next line

            It has to be shown that this is true.

          • Albert

            That what is true?

          • pobjoy

            That one rule fits in one place, but not in the next line.

          • Albert

            Well, if the best you can do is to say that Jesus is wildly inconsistent in the same passage, then I think that speaks for itself.

          • pobjoy

            Maybe you should make that appointment, first thing.

          • Albert

            I need an appointment, because you think Jesus is inconsistent?

            Good argument!

          • Martin

            Albert

            It’s self contradictory in your interpretation, not mine.

          • Ian G

            Pleas see my reply to Albert.

        • Ian G

          This teacher recently preached on Matthew 23. Jesus is clearly denouncing titles. You have no evidence that anyone ever called Paul “father” or that he asked to be called father. He is describing a personal relationship between himself and the Corinthian church. The Greek refers to many fathers, buit of himself he writes “ego umas egenneesa” which is “I you begat” (apologies for the transliteration- limitations of comment facilities). Problems of translation, but no actual use of the title and no actual contradiction.

          There is no way that I am ever going to call a beardless youth “father” when I am old enough to be his grandfather, a Christian longer that he has been alive and act contrary to scripture just because he has been given a dog collar.

          • carl jacobs

            There is no way that I am ever going to call a beardless youth “father” when I am old enough to be his grandfather, a Christian longer that he has been alive and act contrary to scripture just because he has been given a dog collar.

            Word.

          • Pride.

          • Albert

            I think that is special pleading – Paul is their father, but cannot be addressed as such. Really? Someone else is a teacher, but cannot be addressed as such.

            And if I spread the net more widely, Jesus has the rich man address Abraham as “Father Abraham” and St Stephen even addresses the Jewish religious leaders as “Brethren and fathers.”

            There is no way that I am ever going to call a beardless youth “father” when I am old enough to be his grandfather.

            St Paul says:

            Let no one despise your youth

            Therefore, whatever the merits of your argument, your age, in comparison with his, is irrelevant.

          • carl jacobs

            The key word in that sentence was “beardless”.

          • Albert

            What?

          • carl jacobs

            Timothy wasn’t a youth of 20. He was an adult man, probably in his 40s. His “youth” was relative. I agree with Ian. No child of 20 is going to instruct me about life when he can’t even wipe his own … whatever … without guidance.

          • Albert

            Timothy wasn’t a youth of 20

            Nor is the guy in question here. Nor is any clergyman of either the CofE or the Catholic Church. So the point is moot.

          • carl jacobs

            A priest of 26 isn’t much better. Although that’s about the age when adulthood finally dawns. The pastoral epistles lay out criteria for eldership that make a man of 26 too young to run a church. He has to prove himself first.

          • Albert

            A man of 26 is unlikely to be running a church, except in exceptional circumstances, when it cannot be avoided.

          • carl jacobs

            And Ian’s point is made.

          • Albert

            Great. So let’s just see the example. A Christian community, because of some crisis, ends up in the temporary care of a good 26 year old man. But the older men, who cannot take on this role, mess it up, because they lack humility. Is that’s the point, then the point is being made on my side of the argument.

          • carl jacobs

            Ian’s point was that a “beardless youth” didn’t have standing to exercise spiritual authority because he hadn’t lived long enough to earn the right to exercise it. And I wonder if you would make the argument above with but one little change …

            A Christian community, because of some crisis, ends up in the temporary care of a good 26 year old woman.

            No, I didn’t think you would.

          • Albert

            Ian’s point was that a “beardless youth” didn’t have standing to exercise spiritual authority because he hadn’t lived long enough to earn the right to exercise it

            And on your reasoning, if the older men cannot, then no one does.

            A Christian community, because of some crisis, ends up in the temporary care of a good 26 year old woman.That’s hardly a comparison. No, I didn’t think you would.

            You really must stop assuming that you know what my points are going to be! Women have taken care of communities – our own St Hilda for a start! But it is not priestly ministry that they exercise. But that’s not because of their age!

          • carl jacobs

            My reasoning is that there are Scriptural requirements for eldership that can’t just be ignored. You understand this concept in relation to the sacramental ministry of the RC priesthood. A lack of vocations does not immediately cause you to say “Let’s open up the priesthood to women.”. There are superseding requirements.

          • Albert

            I don’t think they are in the same category.

          • carl jacobs

            You are correct. The requirements for eldership have actual Scriptural presence. There is no sacramental priesthood in the Scripture. So you could if you wanted allow women to be priests.

          • Albert

            Not remotely. Remember that scripture says he must be the husband of only one wife. Does that exclude single men? You are confusing concepts: what is ideal, and what is essential.

          • carl jacobs

            I’m confusing nothing. There is no sacramental priesthood in Scripture. And you will not say that the requirement of male-only eldership is merely an ideal as opposed to an essential.

          • Albert

            We were talking about the youthfulness of the minister. Your objection about the sacramental nature of the priesthood, even if valid, would only be an objection if I believed in sola scriptura. But I don’t. It’s bogus. Thus the question comes down to whether everything scripture says a minister ought to be he must be. I think it is evident that that latter move is impossible.

          • Ian G

            You have anticipated some of my argument above. I have in mind a priest who if he is past thirty it is only just. I can think of several other in their thirties who despite being good men – or women – are struggling. They used to do two curacies before getting a parish.

          • Jesus in the Temple?

          • Anton

            Quite. Jesus was 27 when he started the church.

          • sarky

            A man in his 40’s?? How when the life expectancy in those times was 27??

          • carl jacobs

            Life expectancy numbers were driven by extraordinary child mortality numbers. If you made it to (say) 5 years of age, you had a pretty good chance of living well into adulthood.

          • Ian G

            I do not expect the title “teacher” to prefix my name although everyone knows that I am a teacher.
            In the parable, it is a literary device to identify which of many Abrahams He was talking about. Besides, Abraham was their father.
            Stephen is before the Sanhedrin, he observes the courtesies of the day. He did call them stiff-necked, and uncircumcised in heart and ears as well.
            Paul did beget the Corinthian church in that he founded it.
            Perhaps when these youths have founded a church or two or many, or emulated Timothy, or reached the exalted hights of guiding a nation…
            It’s not his youth I despise, it’s the idea that a dog collar grants them such privileges.

          • Albert

            I think your suggestion that it is the dog collar which grants this is telling. I would also point out that all the uses of the word “father” in your post, are prohibited by Jesus’ saying, if taken literally. But you say, it is not to be taken literally. Rather, Jesus is teaching us not to use titles. Well, I can just disagree with your interpretation, especially, as it puts Stephen in the wrong, in a place where scripture commends him to us.

          • Ian G

            No one is perfect except Christ.

          • Albert

            Precisely! Perfection does not come with age.

          • Ian G

            No, but humility and experience do.

          • Albert

            They may do. But sometimes it just brings arrogance and small mindedness. But your point was about perfection. If it doesn’t come with age, how does your reference to perfection help your argument?

          • Ian G

            Stephen is commended for his faithful witness, not for his whole life.

          • Albert

            That’s an interesting comment. I would have thought scripture is commending his defence to us.

          • Ian G

            It’s not a defence. It’s a sermon designed to expose their sin and proclaim Jesus as the Christ.The technical term for the form he used is “heilegeschichte” or “salvation-history”. You could call it Israel’s national testimony only he demonstrates that they consistently failed to obey God. He takes their national story and shows them a history of persecuting the prophets culminating in killing the Righteous One. If your defence is to condemn the court there is only one way it is going to end.

          • Albert

            I can’t really see how this comment advances your argument.

          • Ian G

            That Stephen was only interested in glorifying Christ. He is not being commended for a defence. He is being commended for his witness. His failure to avoid the title “Father” cannot be used to justify undoing the words of Jesus.

          • Albert

            It’s not undoing the words of Jesus any more than John 5.18 is undone by John 14.28. It’s absurd to think that a passage of divinely inspired scripture, like Stephen’s speech in Acts is in contradiction with the words of Christ in Matthew. This is the paradox of your position. Rather than work out how to reconcile the two passages to see what the meaning of scripture is, you would rather hold scripture in contradiction in order to maintain your position. And all this in the name of scripture.

          • Ian G

            The humility of the Son and the nature of the relationship on the one hand and the equality of the Persons within the Godhead?! Basic Trinitarian doctrine. Please.

            Stephen gave them the respect due to Authority. Jesus made it clear that WE were not to demand such titles. You have no evidence of any sort for a Father Peter, Paul or Mother Mary. There are now liberal catholic priestesses who wish to be called Mother.

            Whatever others do, those who believe should not ask for such titles from our own, I am not Teacher and do not expect to be called such. I am A teacher under God. It’s exactly the same in the State system. All are assistant teachers (not to be confused with teaching assistants) under the Head Teacher.

            The Divine inspiration of Stephen calling the Sanhedrin “Brothers and Fathers” is about respect and ‘politesse’ and not about Christ’s instructions to us. Stephen soon dropped the “politesse’ anyway.

          • Albert

            The humility of the Son and the nature of the relationship on the one hand and the equality of the Persons within the Godhead?! Basic Trinitarian doctrine. Please.

            Can you express your point more clearly please?

            Jesus made it clear that WE were not to demand such titles.

            No. He said we are not to give them.

            Whatever others do, those who believe should not ask for such titles from our own, I am not Teacher and do not expect to be called such. I am A teacher under God. It’s exactly the same in the State system. All are assistant teachers (not to be confused with teaching assistants) under the Head Teacher.

            You are quite right, at yet, assistant teachers are called teacher. So by the logic of your example, and what you have conceded here, it follows you could have the title of teacher.

          • Ian G

            The Father is greater than the Son because He is the Father and not because He is God and Jesus is not God.That the Son obeys the Father does not mean that the Son is not God. He is God and so is the Holy Spirit.

            Actually, Jesus told us not to give or to demand. Read the whole context of Matthew 23:1 – 11.

            As for the title of teacher as opposed to the description of a job or ministry, I do not expect to be called “Teacher (Rabbi) Ian” as form of address. It is forms of address that are the subject of Christ’s teaching and not the description of a relationship or ministry etc.

          • Albert

            The Father is greater than the Son because He is the Father and not because He is God and Jesus is not God.That the Son obeys the Father does not mean that the Son is not God. He is God and so is the Holy Spirit.

            Exactly! So the fact that two statements appear contradictory, does not mean that they are. It means we need to understand them more carefully and understanding them more carefully is not undoing them, as you called it. The point you’ve made here is exactly the point I was making.

            Actually, Jesus told us not to give or to demand. Read the whole context of Matthew 23:1 – 11.

            That does not help your position – it simply means that on your reading what Stephen did was wrong.

            As for the title of teacher as opposed to the description of a job or ministry, I do not expect to be called “Teacher (Rabbi) Ian” as form of address. It is forms of address that are the subject of Christ’s teaching and not the description of a relationship or ministry etc.

            Do you have any titles at all? Mr, Pastor, Elder, Reverend, Sir (as a teacher, or a customer, I’m not asking if you have been knighted!)?

          • Ian G

            Mr and Sir, together with feminine equivalents, are a politeness that is being lost. The respect due to elders, strangers, teachers, managers etc. I cannot call myself Sir. Pastor and Elder are ministries. Reverend is definitely wrong but we use Rev. on envelopes and the like.

          • Albert

            Your position seems to become ever more nuanced. And that’s the point. Jesus says, “Call no man…” He doesn’t say “but it’s okay if you’re just being polite.” He might mean that, but that might then apply to clergy. Father expresses a ministry, as does Pastor and Elder (both of which are titles). Rev. means “worthy to be reverenced” – I can’t really see how someone who has that on envelopes can object to clergy being called “Father.”

          • Ian G

            It’s the difference between politeness and pride. I don’t like Rev. fo the reason you give, but while clergy are seen as a breed apart…

            You’ve pushed me on this one, now what do you think? How do you resolve the problem?

          • Albert

            It’s the difference between politeness and pride. I don’t like Rev. fo the reason you give, but while clergy are seen as a breed apart…

            It’s not really a question of politeness, if your reading of Matthew is correct, it’s a question of obedience. But, I think your interpretation rules out all titles, so you should stop using them all, not worry about courtesy and what people think and worry about what obedience and what our Lord thinks.

            But I think your reading is wrong.

            I think that worrying about titles becomes legalistic. Someone can be a teacher, but not be called teacher. On your reading, someone can be called father, provided it is their biological father, an ancestor, or their father in faith (e.g. Gal.3.7), or they are simply being polite, but otherwise not, although they can speak of becoming our fathers, so long as we don’t call them father. This kind of painful legalism seems foreign to the spirit of Jesus’ teaching.

            Therefore, it seems to me that the meaning is this:

            But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brethren.

            Only Jesus is the real teacher. He is the fons et origo of all Christian teaching. So we do not call people teacher on account of their own teaching, but only on account of the fact that they teach what Jesus teaches. We call them teachers because they share in his ministry of teaching, by teaching what he teaches. But in ourselves, we are not teachers, but brethren, each of us needing to sit at the feet of Jesus, listen and learn.

            The same logic applies to the saying about “Father”. We can address ministers as father, not on account of themselves, but on account of the ministry of God the Father, that is in them (e.g. John 20.21). They are not “our fathers” in their own strength, and it is not them, or their own personal ministry that is being named, but rather the ministry of Christ in them: We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.

            Thus in these sayings, Jesus is not setting up a legalistic code of painfully difficult application (particularly painful in the light of how scripture actually uses these words), rather he is identifying himself, and himself only as the source of the ministry of every Christian minster. When we use these terms, because of this teaching, we recognize that. What genuine ministry is there in the Church that is not first the ministry of Christ? Such titles help us not to lose sight of that ministry. When the priest gives me absolution, it is not him who is forgiving me, as such, it is Christ in him – therefore, I call him Father. Otherwise, it just looks like it’s Dave who is doing it.

          • pobjoy

            Jesus has the rich man address Abraham as “Father Abraham”

            That’s using the word ‘father’ in the biological, generative sense, the putative rich man being an Israelite, descended from Abraham. Though he did not take Abraham, justified by faith, as exemplar, which was the meaning given to Abraham.

            There is no escape. To call a man ‘father’ in the religious sense is to declare that one is without the Holy Spirit, and, if aware, fears his presence and control of one’s life.

            Stephen even addresses the Jewish religious leaders as “Brethren and
            fathers.”

            They were not religious leaders; at least, not legitimately. They were literally brothers and fathers, according to physical descent, and age. That they stoned Stephen showed that their spiritual father was the devil.

          • Albert

            I think the fact that you have to reduce all these passages to biology is conclusive.

          • pobjoy

            So you now think that the devil has children literally.

            Oh, well.

          • Albert

            How ironic. That’s the logic of your position.

          • pobjoy

            All you can do now is lie.

          • Albert

            You’re back to saying that then, instead of addressing the points. I note you’ve tried this strategy with others, whom I am equally sure have not lied.

          • pobjoy

            See what I mean.

          • carl jacobs

            It is literally impossible to be charitable towards you.

            1. Albert doesn’t lie. I have known him through this weblog for six years. Unlike most RCs he knows what the RCC teaches and he can defend it. He may be blinded by Rome, but he does not lie for it.

            2. That fact that you don’t understand how badly you have presented yourself on this thread is telling. Your behavior is so bad, it makes an observer cringe.

            3. I am glad you would call me a heretic.

          • Albert

            Thank you again, Carl!

          • Albert

            When someone asks me to substantiate a point I have made I do so. But when someone asks you to asks you to substantiate a point you have made, you call them a liar.

            I wonder why that is.

          • pobjoy

            They don’t have an original thought in their heads. They’d be back in hovels, if they got what their religion actually produced.

          • pobjoy

            He is describing a personal relationship between himself and the Corinthian church.

            Quite so. The other thing he wrote that his personal example was to be followed by the saints. The Vatican, otoh, says that its ‘priests’ are valid, even if they commit heinous crimes.

          • Albert

            Is it your view then, that the ministry of a minister rests on his own righteousness, and not on the righteousness of Christ?

          • pobjoy

            ‘Remember my instructions: an elder must be without fault; he must have only one wife, and his children must be believers and not have the reputation of being wild or disobedient; because, since a church leader is in charge of God’s work, he should be without fault. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered, or a drunkard or violent or greedy for money. He must be hospitable and love what is good. He must be self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined.’ Tit 1:5-9

            That alone cuts out the Bergoglio following.

          • Albert

            Why of course, does not answer the question.

          • pobjoy

            That is not a proper sentence.

          • Albert

            I’ve corrected it.

          • pobjoy

            Not in my opinion.

          • Albert

            That’s just bizarre, and an attempt to cover up the fact, that, as usual, you are not addressing any question whose answer would count against your own position.

          • pobjoy

            Projectionist.

          • Albert

            It’s clear which of my points you have not addressed. But if you think I am a projectionist, please tell me, which of your points I have not addressed.

          • pobjoy

            Find one that you have ever addressed! 😀

          • Albert

            I’m happy for anyone reading this to judge that.

          • pobjoy

            Bluff.

          • pobjoy

            Well done! That’s a sentence!

            If only it was true.

          • Albert

            Great. So you’re reduced to critiquing my typing -it saves arguing with my points.

          • pobjoy

            Projectionist.

          • Anton

            That issue first came up at the Donatist schism. Diverging slightly from your question, I have never been happy with the resolution of that schism. Had I been in a congregation betrayed to the authorities by its leader at a time of persecution, I would not have refused to have that leader back in the congregation afterwards provided that repentance was manifest. But absolutely not as its leader. I would refuse such leadership, whatever the implications, and I suggest that one facet of genuine repentance would be to step down.

          • Albert

            I think the point you make is reasonable enough. But remember the question was not simply should X be minister, but are the sacraments conferred by X after his sin valid? That’s a different question, and it can’t be resolved in the way you suggest.

          • Anton

            I agree it’s a different question (and said as much!) Baptisms would not be a problem; what counts is the faith and repentance of the person being baptised. As for Communion, it’s only a hot topic if you believe in transubstantiation, which was not a settled doctrine at the time of the Donatist schism.

          • It wasn’t just Paul.
            Peter also followed this, referring to Mark as his son: “She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings; and so does my son Mark” (1 Pet. 5:13). The Apostles sometimes referred to entire churches under their care as their children. Paul writes, “Here for the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be a burden, for I seek not what is yours but you; for children ought not to lay up for their parents, but parents for their children” (2 Cor. 12:14); and, “My little children, with whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you!” (Gal. 4:19).

            John said, “My little children, I am writing this to you so that you may not sin; but if any one does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1); “No greater joy can I have than this, to hear that my children follow the truth” (3 John 4). In fact, John also addresses men in his congregations as “fathers” (1 John 2:13–14).

            By referring to these people as their spiritual sons and spiritual children, Peter, Paul, and John imply their own roles as spiritual fathers.

          • Ian G

            It’s the difference between an earned relationship and the demand to be addressed by a title simply because you have a dog-collar and a robe.

        • Martin

          Albert

          Paul is speaking in reference to the new birth, not to being a teacher.

          • Albert

            Yes, but you apply the logic behind the reference to teacher to the statement about “father” and it fits.

          • Martin

            Albert

            No it doesn’t.

          • Albert

            Why not? In the first, someone is a teacher because they teach what Christ teaches, in the second, someone becomes a father by sharing in Christ’s ministry.

          • pobjoy

            So all Catholics are Fathers. Well, well.

          • Albert

            Explain the logic – or do I just get to call you a liar, like you call other people?

          • Uncle Brian

            Albert, I have a strong suspicion that Carl hit the nail on the head with this question he addressed to Pobjoy lower down on this thread:

            This is a serious question. Are you on the autism spectrum? I don’t want to treat you unjustly if you are, but your responses can be so wildly disproportionate that it makes me wonder.

            At first glance, it looks as though Pobjoy is just trolling, making things up as he goes along, posting whatever comment or insult he thinks will get you wound up. But it’s quite possible that he doesn’t even realise what he’s doing.

          • carl jacobs

            Yes. Exactly.

          • Albert

            May be – I think I shall just ignore him.

          • Martin

            Albert

            It is a question of authority. No one in the Church has authority over others as a teacher, for the Bible is the authority.

          • Albert

            Actually, it is Christ who is the authority:

            He is the head of the body, the church

            Now if someone is passing on his teaching, then they can be called teachers:

            And his gifts were that some should be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers,

            But if they invent their own teaching, and set themselves up as a source of authority and teaching in opposition to Christ, then they can’t be called teachers. This is what the passage is on about. It’s preventing us from going after teachings to suit out own likings, such as may come from Marx or Nietzsche.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Since the Bible is God’s word it is also Christ’s word and hence carries His authority.

            Since all teaching is to be tested against Scripture it isn’t the one who teaches who is the authority but Scripture. Thus Paul challenged Peter because his actions were not in line with what Scripture taught. Any elder who cannot show his teaching is in accord with Scripture should be challenged.

          • Albert

            Since the Bible is God’s word it is also Christ’s word and hence carries His authority.

            According to the Bible, God’s word comes in two forms: scripture and tradition.

            Since all teaching is to be tested against Scripture it isn’t the one who teaches who is the authority but Scripture.

            Okay, but that does not mean that the interpreter gives the meaning of scripture. Scripture says

            First of all you must understand this, that no prophecy of scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation

            And

            Do all interpret?

            Thus, when I test your position against scripture, it does not seem scriptural

            Thus Paul challenged Peter because his actions were not in line with what Scripture taught.

            Which scripture would that be at the time?

            Any elder who cannot show his teaching is in accord with Scripture should be challenged.

            Every heretic has defended his teaching with scripture, thus, it is the interpretation of the Church in decided whether it is authentically scriptural that matters. As scripture says:

            So also our beloved brother Paul wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, speaking of this as he does in all his letters. There are some things in them hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other scriptures.

          • pobjoy

            According to the Bible, God’s word comes in two forms: scripture and tradition.

            Bible reference?

          • Martin

            Albert

            The ‘tradition’ of the church of Rome is heresy, so I wouldn’t want to put that forward as something to follow. Equally each tradition must be tested against Scripture.

            The church of Rome has demanded that it’s own interpretation is the only accepted one, that its traditions be accepted. I’d say that goes somewhat against the passage you quote. If you were to read the following verse it would show your understanding is, in any case, wrong:

            knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
            (II Peter 1:20-21 [ESV])

            What Scripture? Why the Scripture both in the preaching of Peter and Paul.

            And what of the situation where the church is the heretic, as in the church of Rome? Then the Christian must test what that church says against Scripture.

          • Albert

            The ‘tradition’ of the church of Rome is heresy, so I wouldn’t want to put that forward as something to follow. Equally each tradition must be tested against Scripture.

            So you say. But on the basis of what? Your interpretation of scripture. But I have literally no reason to accept your authority, neither do I find your interpretation of scripture remotely convincing.

            Your quotation of 2 Peter is not expressed in a way that supports your position. What is the point you are making?

          • pobjoy

            I have literally no reason to accept your authority

            At least we are unaware that ‘Martin’ is a criminal. But every Catholic is subject to arrest, everywhere in the world, except for a hectare or two donated by Mussolini.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Scripture is interpreted on the basis of Scripture.

          • Albert

            Fine. Who interprets scripture on the basis of scripture?

          • Martin

            Albert

            What do you imagine sola scriptura means?

          • Albert

            That’s a good question, in itself. Given that the scriptures don’t teach it, it’s a question of differing tradition. There are some versions a Catholic can accept! What cannot be accepted is a view which places the interpretation of the individual above the interpretation of the Church.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Of course Scripture teach sola scriptura, Christ Himself gave us the lead with the way He used the Bible and pointed out the errors of men’s traditions.

          • Albert

            The idea that Catholics do not care about the Gospel is very foolish. Sure, they do not care for your gospel. But then, it seems to us that your gospel is not in the Bible – but on the contrary, is expressly condemned there.

            Of course Scripture teach sola scriptura, Christ Himself gave us the lead with the way He used the Bible and pointed out the errors of men’s traditions.

            No one is agreeing with human traditions, but not all traditions are human traditions. So your point fails.

          • Martin

            Albert

            You do not have a gospel, for you cannot know you are saved. Your salvation depends on what you do, you must remain ever vigilant, lest you lose that tenuous grasp on grace.

            You mean those recent traditions like the bodily assumption of Mary in 1950? All the traditions of the church of Rome are human traditions.

          • Albert

            You do not have a gospel, for you cannot know you are saved. Your salvation depends on what you do, you must remain ever vigilant, lest you lose that tenuous grasp on grace.

            Of course, we have a Gospel. We just recognise that God’s grace does not violate our free-will, but rather, perfects it. You do not have a Gospel, because your doctrine of justification, is no justification at all, but rather a kind of annihilation.

            You mean those recent traditions like the bodily assumption of Mary in 1950? All the traditions of the church of Rome are human traditions.

            If you think that the assumption of Mary is a tradition of 1950, you do not know your history. And if you think discerning the fulness of the revelation of God in Jesus Christ can be done by the discipline of history alone, you do not know that revelation.

          • Martin

            Albert

            The sinner dead in sin does not have free will, they are spiritually dead and must be raised from the dead. Of course I have a doctrine of justification:

            Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven,
            and whose sins are covered;
            blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.
            (Romans 4:7-8 [ESV])

            I’m that blessed man, my sins have all been forgiven, past present and future, my sins are covered by the blood of the Lamb. How about you, have you not constantly to work at ensuring your sins are covered, so you can never know if you are saved.

            The bodily assumption of Mary wasn’t a dogma until 1950, it was never a teaching of the early Church and it isn’t in the Bible. It’s a superstitious invention of men. History tells us that the Roman Catholic church didn’t even exist then, it was the result of men’s desire for power, to be able to laud it over others.

          • Albert

            The sinner dead in sin does not have free will, they are spiritually dead and must be raised from the dead.

            Sin just is a misuse of free will. Therefore, of course a sinner has free will, how else can he be justly condemned, unless he has misused his free will?

            Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.

            Forgiveness is only part of justification. Justification means to make righteous. We actually become righteous in Christ, by sharing in his righteousness by grace: God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. But since justification does not, on your view, happen in accordance with our free will, we do not become righteous. Rather, we become robots. But this, too is plainly contrary to scripture, since scripture speaks of the apostles as God’s co-workers, and speaks of us having free will: For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own free will

            Therefore, the crucial part of the person, the person where the problem is, namely, free will, is not saved or made righteous on your account. Therefore, you do not have a doctrine of justification.

            I’m that blessed man, my sins have all been forgiven, past present and future, my sins are covered by the blood of the Lamb.

            Your future sins, like mine will be forgiven provided you endure to the end, as Jesus says.

            How about you, have you not constantly to work at ensuring your sins are covered, so you can never know if you are saved.

            So you reject Catholicism without understanding what it teaches. Good one.

            And you are still not dealing with the fact that the Bible never says “sola fide” except for where it states the Catholic doctrine:

            You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone.

            As a Catholic, I just need to cite that scripture. That’s our teaching. Yours is different.

            The bodily assumption of Mary wasn’t a dogma until 1950

            True, but then the doctrine that the Son of God is homoousios with the Father was not dogma until 325 at the earliest. The canon of scripture is later still. The doctrine of the assumption develops in the early Church and was clearly believed, long before Luther contradicted scripture by introducing his bogus “sola fide” doctrine supported by his equally bogus “sola scriptura” doctrine.

            In my last post, I asked you to give the evidence you claimed there was for your claim that the evidence is that there were those who held to it, despite the cruelty of Rome.

            You have provided no such evidence. Moreover, you still haven’t provided a convincing account of Hebrews 6.4 – it cannot be that those mentioned there have not received the Holy Spirit.

            So your doctrine is contradicted by scripture not just once, but several times and from several different angles.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Sin isn’t just a misuse of free will, it is a rebellion against God and the adoption of a new master, sin. Thus when we sin we surrender our free will to our sin, we no longer have free will.

            I’ll agree that we become righteous in Christ, that we receive His righteousness, but that does not require our will, rather in raising us from the dead God both makes us righteous and frees our will.

            My future sins are forgiven, for they are covered by Christ’s righteousness. I cannot fall away, since I have been born again and cannot be unborn. Hebrews is speaking of those who were never saved in the first place.

            That is not to say that I cannot sin, I will and do and as Paul says:

            What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?

            (Romans 6:1-2 [ESV])

            I reject the paganism of Rome, seeing that it is not good news, but rather a slavery.

            Trouble is, you quote Scripture out of context, James is clearly, as I’ve said before, speaking of appearance not result.

            The canon of Scripture was set by the churches long before and Jesus is clearly represented as being of one nature with the Father and Spirit in the Bible. That traditions need to be tested against Scripture is clear in Scripture, but there is no support for the treatment Mary and the ‘saints’ receive from your sect.

            You’ll probably not accept any evidence I present.

          • Albert

            Sin isn’t just a misuse of free will, it is a rebellion against God and the adoption of a new master, sin. Thus when we sin we surrender our free will to our sin, we no longer have free will.

            When we sin, we sin freely. Otherwise, we would have no more guilt than a stone is guilty when it falls.

            ‘ll agree that we become righteous in Christ, that we receive His righteousness, but that does not require our will, rather in raising us from the dead God both makes us righteous and frees our will.

            I agree with that, but in a different order: God gives us grace, frees our will, so that we receive his righteousness. Why can God not do this? Is he, on your view, not powerful enough to free our will, so that, by grace, we can receive his will? Scripture says that is exactly what happens.

            My future sins are forgiven, for they are covered by Christ’s righteousness. I cannot fall away, since I have been born again and cannot be unborn. Hebrews is speaking of those who were never saved in the first place.

            Clearly not – and neither is 1 Cor.10.12.

            Trouble is, you quote Scripture out of context, James is clearly, as I’ve said before, speaking of appearance not result.

            No. The trouble is you fatly deny what scripture says. James makes two points, you are determined to silence the word so that he only makes one point. But what we believe is simply what scripture says. What you believe is the very point scripture explicitly denies.

            The canon of Scripture was set by the churches long before

            Evidence?

            Jesus is clearly represented as being of one nature with the Father and Spirit in the Bible.

            Precisely. A belief can be present before it is dogmatised. That’s my point, and it answers yours.

            That traditions need to be tested against Scripture is clear in Scripture, but there is no support for the treatment Mary and the ‘saints’ receive from your sect.

            What you mean is that they need to tested against your interpretation of scripture. But who are you? And why, when you try to convince me of your interpretation on the solas do I find your position wanting, when judged by scripture?

            You’ll probably not accept any evidence I present.

            At least I provide evidence.

          • Martin

            Albert

            Of course we sin freely, we have chosen our path and our master ensures we stick to it. There are no divisions in sin for it is all rebellion and all brings death.

            You really must make your mind up, either God frees our will or else we have a freed will already. And it is hardly grace if God merely gives us the ability to say no to sin, what we should have been doing in the first place. On the contrary, God takes our dead , dried bones and causes them to live, He causes us to love the things we once hated and seek Him. It is the greatest miracle imaginable. 1 Corinthians 10:12 is speaking of Christians falling into sin, not losing their salvation.

            But someone will say, You have faith and I have works. Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness—and he was called a friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.

            (James 2:18-26 [ESV])

            James is making one point, that our faith is not visible to others, or even ourselves, to make it visible requires a working out of the faith in our lives, those works worthy of repentance.

            The evidence that Scripture was set by the churches long before a council set them is that they came with their understanding of what was Scripture. You will also see in the Bible itself that such opinions had already been set.

            And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures.

            (II Peter 3:15-16 [ESV])

            And show me where in the Bible you can justify your treatment of Mary as other than a sinner saved by grace? It isn’t that I stand alone in my view, it is the opinion of many godly men down the ages, as well as those I have mentioned.

          • pobjoy

            In practice, yes, indeed. The Bible says that the church is the pillar and foundation of truth. But who is the church? It cannot be the Vatican’s cult, for so many horrifying reasons it would take days to list them all, though the theological issue of justification by works, which militates against the very concept of christhood, is central. The church is limited to those who limit their resources to what can be reasonably well identified to be the record of Jesus, known as Christ, and his apparent immediate followers.

            That is, the 66 books of the Bible, of which there is no significant difference of opinion regarding identity among those who reject the appalling, criminous Vatican and similar works-justification cults. Even though, as prophesied, as indeed one must expect if Jesus’ judgment of the world was truthful, there are many conflicting interpretations of those 66 books, that agreement on canon is a most remarkable fact; yet one that too often goes unremarked.

          • Martin

            Pob

            ” The Bible says that the church is the pillar and foundation of truth.”

            Where?

          • pobjoy

            ‘But if I delay, this letter will let you know how we should conduct ourselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.’ 1 Ti 3:15 GNB

          • Martin

            Pob

            Seems like Paul is referring to the local church and how the individuals should behave,

          • pobjoy

            Does that mean that Christians can tell lies?

          • Martin

            Pob

            Why should it mean that?

          • pobjoy

            If the church is not the pillar and support of the truth, its members can tell lies.

          • Martin

            Pob

            I’m not sure that follows.

          • pobjoy

            You could be lying.

          • The New Testament references the theology of the spiritual fatherhood of priests in Paul’s statement, “I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel” (1 Cor. 4:14–15).

            Peter also followed this, referring to Mark as his son: “She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings; and so does my son Mark” (1 Pet. 5:13). The Apostles sometimes referred to entire churches under their care as their children. Paul writes, “Here for the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be a burden, for I seek not what is yours but you; for children ought not to lay up for their parents, but parents for their children” (2 Cor. 12:14); and, “My little children, with whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you!” (Gal. 4:19).

            John said, “My little children, I am writing this to you so that you may not sin; but if any one does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1); “No greater joy can I have than this, to hear that my children follow the truth” (3 John 4). In fact, John also addresses men in his congregations as “fathers” (1 John 2:13–14).

            By referring to these people as their spiritual sons and spiritual children, Peter, Paul, and John imply their own roles as spiritual fathers. Since the Bible frequently speaks of this spiritual fatherhood, Catholics acknowledge it and follow the custom of the Apostles by calling priests “Father.” Failure to acknowledge this is would be a failure to recognize and honour the great gift God has bestowed on the Church: the spiritual fatherhood of the priesthood. Priests, in turn, follow the apostles’ biblical example by referring to members of their flock as “my son” or “my child” (cf. Gal. 4:19; 1 Tim. 1:18; 2 Tim. 2:1; Philem. 10; 1 Pet. 5:13; 1 John 2:1; 3 John 4).

            All of these passages were written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and they express the infallibly recorded truth that Christ’s ministers do have a role as spiritual fathers. Jesus is not against acknowledging that. It is he who gave these men their role as spiritual fathers, and it is his Holy Spirit who recorded this role for us in the pages of Scripture. To acknowledge spiritual fatherhood is to acknowledge the truth, and no amount of anti-Catholic grumbling will change that fact.

          • Martin

            HJ

            There is no NT role of priest in the NT Church. The sacrifice is finished, the curtain is torn down there is no altar.

            None of these passages entitles those in any sort of ministry to call themselves father. Indeed, since the church of Rome has long ago lost the gospel, there are no spiritual fathers in that church except in that they have induced those under their influence to the worship of Satan.

          • pobjoy

            Catholics acknowledge it and follow the custom of the Apostles by calling priests “Father.”

            But Catholics are not converted. Few of them will realise this, but many Christians are converted through the agency of a particular person, whom they fondly regard as a spiritual ‘father’, yet they never call that person ‘Father’, and would be prevented from doing so by their churches, because they are in possession of the Holy Spirit just as much as the one who brought them to Christ. They would not even consider calling a complete stranger ‘Father’.

            The problem that you have, Jack, is that you promote fascism. Whether you realise it, or not.

      • carl jacobs

        Be careful of pobjoy, Martin. He isn’t what he seems … If you haven’t already noticed. :-).

        He is an anti-Trinitarian who would call you a heretic to your face.

      • Little Black Censored

        What are we supposed to call our fathers, then, according to you?

        • Martin

          LBC

          If you were to bother to read the passage in context, and I’ve given most of the context, you would see it is referring to teachers and how they are to be regarded. In the Christian Church teachers are not the authority, the Bible is.

          Our biological fathers are not spiritual authorities.

          • “In the Christian Church teachers are not the authority, the Bible is.”

            Do you have a biblical reference for that assertion?

          • Martin

            HJ

            That is what the passage I quoted teaches.

  • len

    Anti – Semitism is a very real problem today and much of this anti -Semitism has been fuelled by the media and by those who have no understanding of this centuries old problem.
    Anti -Semitism is played out in the material world but anti-Semitism has its roots in the the spiritual conflict between good (God)and evil (Satan) Of course many think the root of this problem is’ the treatment’ of the Palestinians by the Jews. And Socialists who leap to the defence of the Palestinians believe they are doing ‘the right thing’ . The’ Palestinians'(who are basically Arabs there never was’ a Palestinian race’) are pawns being used as ‘victims’ by the Arabs to bring discredit to Israel so yes they ARE victims but of the Arabs not the Jews. The Arab Nations who control vast swathes of Land could easily have given the Palestinians a homeland and not even noticed the loss but Arabs prefer to use the Palestinians as pawns to further their own agenda against Israel.
    The West with little or no understanding of the factors behind the conflicts in the middle east is actually contributing to the escalating violence by ill times or totally comments and actions.

    • Politically__Incorrect

      One can imagine the disgust that would be displayed by the “supporters” of Palestine if one of the surrounding Arab nations offered them a homeland. No more hammer to hit Israel with. Perhaps yhey could finally turn their attention to the pedsecution of homosexuals and non-muslims in those countries instead.

      As you say Len, anti-semitism is about something much more deep-rooted and sinister than a squabble over land. It is a constant witness to man’s hypocrisy.

  • IanCad

    “wildly, rabidly inclusive”
    Let’s cut to the chase: This guy is nuts.

    • Jethro

      … I’d say he’s a friend of my late great-aunt Dot (remember ‘Life at the Luscombes’?). An’ she could be plenty inclusive in her vitriol. …

  • Anton

    What Ken Livingstone said was, factually, fairly accurate; but why did he choose to say it as part of this controversy? It merely fanned the flames.

    I do not doubt that socialist Jews are welcome in the Labour party; look at the Milibands, for example. And I agree with Ken Livingstone that there is a valid distinction between anti-Zionism and anti-semitism. But I ask this question (not with any individual in mind): when somebody who claims to be merely anti-Zionist holds Israel to a higher standard than he (or she) holds other nations, what is that other than anti-semitism?

    • HedgehogFive

      Human Anton,

      You have hit the nail on the head there.

      During the Troubles in Northern Ireland, many complained about the BBC giving voice to IRA members or supporters who were banned in the Irish Republic.

      But what made the Hedgehog’s spines bristle was the many commentators from Great Britain who seemed to overlook that the IRA had declared war on Britain, but expected the British government to behave as in peace time.

      I referred to such people as “pussy-wussies”, but this drew objection from at least one cat-lover.

      • Anton

        Not from this cat-lover.

  • chiefofsinners

    I see that Mr Rundell has awarded himself the epithet ‘ipriest’, presumably in reference to the Jewish office of high priest, and reflecting the esteem in which the nation of Israel holds him.
    Might I also suggest:
    i opinion of imself
    i time he resigned

    • Anton

      In terms of canon law, is that what is known as a “legal i”? Or perhaps it’s Italian and means “the priest”?

      • chiefofsinners

        Possibly the Calvinist’s drug of choice: the legalistic i.

        • carl jacobs

          I’m watching you … >:-(

          • chiefofsinners

            You’re in for a dull afternoon.

          • carl jacobs

            A sacrifice I must make to assist those whose doctrinal formation has been distorted by the musings of Jacob Arminius.

          • chiefofsinners

            Don’t worry. If it’s meant to be, it’ll happen.

          • carl jacobs

            God decrees both means and ends.

          • chiefofsinners

            He has decreed that I am the means, and that a dull afternoon for you is the end.
            I would apologize, but since God has decreed it, I guess you deserve it.

  • which right-wing British newspaper referred to Palestinian schoolchildren as ‘cockroaches’ after Israel bombed their school?

    The best I can do is Ben Dahan. He doesn’t refer to Palestinian children as cockroaches but he does say of Palestinians in general: ‘To me, they are like animals, they aren’t human.’

  • Uncle Brian

    Has he now substantiated his surprising allegation involving “the British media”, the word “cockroaches,” and Palestinian children? Or are we still waiting for him to come clean?

    That’s a pretty vague term, “the British media”. It will interesting to learn what, exactly, he means by that.

    • The Explorer

      “Exactly” is over-optimistic, I fear. Such people don’t deal in exactitude.

      1. Because fuzziness is a standard weapon in dealing with the enemy in case any issue becomes clarified in the wrong direction.

      2. Because, as a generality, such people are so genuinely fuzzy they themselves don’t know what they mean.

  • magnolia

    I generally avoid anything described as “wildly, rabidly” anything. It is an avoidance that has stood the test of time exceptionally well. Enough said.

    • Politically__Incorrect

      Indeed. It reminds me of the hyperbole and absolutist over – statement so beloved of many politicians. It usually boxes them into a corner eventually.

  • carl jacobs

    Have you noticed how easy it is for Left wing religionists to mix religion and politics without getting barked at about “separation of church and state”? Now in one sense this true because left wing religion is a theistic version of the civic religion of the culture. One can worship man with or without a veneer of divine approval. It is also true however that Left wing religion is political in its essence and so it could not exist without the political connection. A political difference therefore becomes more than a disagreement. It becomes the difference between true and false religion. Which answers the question ” How would he minister to Tories?’. As it is written: “Put the sinning brother out!”

  • CliveM

    They truth is with the civil war in the Tories over the referendum, the farcical budget, the IDS walkout over benefit cuts, the general air of sleeze and incompetence emanating from the Govt, labour should be so far ahead in the polls, that the Tories should be facing electoral melt down.

    But they’re not. They are ahead of Labour even in Scotland. The reason is is that for most people labour are offering a vision of the fur that the majority reject. True believers like this idiot Priest can’t or won’t face this truth. So they have to blame someone or something. In this case the ‘right wing’ media and a ‘manufactured’ debate over anti Semitism.

    Let the left believe it, it renders them impotent.

  • William Lewis

    There’s fisking and then there’s a Cranmer fisking.

  • Uncle Brian

    A few days after the General Election last year a guest blogger here wrote about an Anglican vicar who told the Tory voters among his parishioners, via twitter, that he would like to beat them with a crowbar. I’ve just been looking back at the comments thread (link below) and, as far as I can see, the would-be assailant wasn’t identified at the time, either by name or by parish. Instead, he was referred to as “the vicar of X”. Could it possibly be the same one? The hate-filled tweets seem remarkably similar.

    http://archbishopcranmer.com/vicar-regrets-not-being-able-to-ban-tories-from-communion/

    • bluedog

      Read through the post and it seems like a very close match. What a memory!

  • pobjoy

    According to the Bible, God’s word comes in two forms: scripture and tradition.

    Bible reference?

    • 2 Thess. 2:15

      2 Tim. 2:2

      1 Cor. 15:3,11

      1 Cor. 11:2

      Acts 2:42

      Luke 10:16

      Rom. 10:17

      1 Pet. 1:25

      • Anton

        References by Paul and Peter are clearly to the tales of Jesus which were written down a decade or so later as the gospels.

        • Pubcrawler

          All of them? What then of John 21.25?

          • pobjoy

            John 21.25 is an example of hyperbolic literary tradition whereby an author indicated that he had been selective (writing materials were expensive): ‘There’s a lot more where this came from, of the same sort.’

            So any teaching that cannot be proved from Scripture, as the Anglican Article has it, is plainly impermissible.

            What people do not seem to realise is that the Anglican Reformers were not necessarily terrifically good people, but they were at least intellectually respectable. The foreign alternative was that of a rabble, in that respect.

        • Are you claiming everything Jesus said and taught is written in scripture? The bible says otherwise.

          • Anton

            Of course I’m not. He would have been an incredibly taciturn man to say so few words in three years. But we have no reliable record of any other words of his, do we? We therefore have all of his words that we need to know.

          • We also have the teachings of the Apostles.

          • Anton

            Indeed we do and, as with Jesus, the only reliable record we have of their words is in the New Testament,

          • And you base this assertion on what?

          • Anton

            Please give me a counter-example.

          • Read the prologue of the Gospel of Luke. He relied on what was told to him in writing it. That information was relayed to him and is an example of Apostolic Tradition.

            Another example of Apostolic Tradition is the teaching of the Holy Trinity. It states that there are three persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) in one God because they share the same divine nature. Scripture shows there is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. However, it does
            not explain how there are three persons in one God. In addition, the Bible does not say one Divine Person is or is not inferior to the other. It is Sacred Tradition that helps us interpret what Scripture is saying.

          • Anton

            Re Luke, we are agreeing – I already said that many of the references to Tradition in the letters meant the things that were collected into the gospels.

            “The bible came from the Church and not the reverse.”

            The Bible came from GOD. The church’s task was to recognise what was God’s word. It is not free to change it. Or add to it.

            “it does not explain how there are three persons in one God”

            Indeed it does not. And all attempts – which in effect add to scripture – have been mere conjecture, and have fuelled schism between Christians holding differing views.

          • Not all word of mouth traditions were collected into the Gospels. Methods of worship, for example. And it was the Church who recognised Holy Scripture – through guidance of the Holy Spirit and Apostolic tradition. Our Christology and our Trinitarian beliefs all come from tradition and despite past schisms are not that far apart between East and West – geographical rivalries intruded.

          • Anton

            One would have thought it obvious that the discerned word of God had authority over any word of man.

            It is explicit in scripture that the Creator, Jesus Christ and the Holy spirit are all divine, and explicit that Jesus is both fully divine and fully human. All attempts to state how are futile and have led to needless division among believers.

          • Please note Jack’s use of the word “exclusive” in his question. Jack asked for a biblical reference, not your opinion.

            Nowhere is it recorded that Jesus instructed His disciples to write His words down. Indeed, commissioned them to preach. The Apostles were repeating the words of Jesus.

          • Anton

            Do you think it is merely my opinion that the discerned word of God should have total authority over any word of man?

            ‘Exclusive’ is an inadequate word for this discussion. I have authority over certain people in certain contexts; the point is that God alone has total authority over everything at all times, and whenever anybody asserts a counter-authority to him they must be in the wrong.

          • Apostolic tradition is not a “counter-authority”. It comes fro God too. That’s in scripture.

          • Anton

            For example?

          • “But Jesus came near and spoke to them; All authority in heaven and on earth, he said, has been given to me; you, therefore, must go out, making disciples of all nations, and baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all the commandments which I have given you. And behold I am with you all through the days that are coming, until the consummation of the world.”
            (Matthew 28:18-20)
            Then there are these:

            2 Thess. 2:15
            2 Tim. 2:2
            1 Cor. 15:3,11
            1 Cor. 11:2
            Acts 2:42
            Luke 10:16
            Rom. 10:17
            1 Pet. 1:25

          • Anton

            Far be it from me to differ from scripture! But we have been at this point before; I was asking for a specific apostolic tradition which you regard as authoritative as scripture.

          • Jack has already provided a couple earlier. The Gospels themselves are Apostolic tradition, as is our very understanding of the Incarnation and the Triune God.

            Now you’re the one being evasive. No where does scripture claim exclusive authority for itself. Do you deny this?

          • Anton

            No I do not; and I am not being evasive. Why on earth you think this is a knockout blow for you is beyond me. Scripture is the word of God and therefore totally authoritative over man, as I trust you will agree. There is mention in the Old Testament of prophets whose inspired words we do not have. We may therefore infer that such words are given to deal with local situations only, and contain nothing that all of God’s people need to know. The NT is also scripture, so the principle can be extended. If not, why not?

          • Of course scripture is the word of God. However, it is not the exclusive source of His word or of Jesus’ teachings. Jesus himself uses oral tradition and quotes seemingly well known teachings that are not recorded in the OT.

          • Anton

            And what reliable words of Jesus have we that are not in the gospels?

          • Sorry, but Jack isn’t going to continually jump to your tune and answer endless questions. Besides, that isn’t what Jack said. Read his post again.

          • Anton

            And there was me getting fed up about dancing to your tune and your endless questions.

            Till another thread?

          • Look forward to it ….

          • Anton

            Ditto. We have plenty to agree on, anyway, viz the Nicene Creed and the perniciousness of secularism.

      • pobjoy

        2 Thess. 2:15; 1 Cor. 11:2

        This is personal instruction to particular churches of personally known people, not a general statement of principle; in any case, the word ‘tradition’ is not very apt rendition of παράδοσις, as the letters to the Thessalonians were of the first that Paul wrote, and there had been no time for recognisable tradition to be observed. This word can be translated ‘tradition’ when the context makes it clear that there is habitual practice involved; and in almost all cases where that applies in the NT, παράδοσις is said to be harmful. The παράδοσις of Jesus was sola Scriptura!

        The better translations of Thessalonians are like this one:

        ‘So then, our brothers, stand firm and hold on to those truths which we taught you, both in our preaching and in our letter.’ GNB

        As all that remains to the church is ‘our letter’ (i.e. 1 Thessalonians), this is actually further argument for sola Scriptura.

        This attempt is perfect example of the ‘word search’ basis of Catholic theology, that seeks desperately to find any word that gives the worldly excuse to control the unworldly.

        1 Cor. 15:3,11; Acts 2:42

        Frivolous postings.

        Luke 10:16; Rom. 10:17; 1 Pet. 1:25

        The mind boggles.

  • Findaráto

    One only has to read the constant homophobic abuse that fills the comments threads of this blog to understand that the kind of Conservative who congregates here hasn’t moved an inch in his attitudes since 1964.

    • pobjoy

      I have no idea what you mean. Most of the posters are Catholics (it’s their restive, invasive nature), and Catholicism was notable for sodomy since quite soon after ‘priests’ were forced to be celibate.

    • Sybaseguru

      I presume you mean the comments that take Romans 1 to give a negative slant to God view of homosexual activity, or maybe those who are concerned that the 1.6% of the population who claim to be homosexual, account for over 50% of paedophiles in prison.

      • Findaráto

        Romans 1 is as good an example as any other of the religious gibberish that Christians use as an excuse for persecuting gays.

        And as for your wild claims about the sexuality of paedophiles in prison, what’s your source? “Christian Concern” perhaps? Or “Focus on the Family”?

        Better examples of hate-filled homophobic organisations who lie about and smear the LGBT community in pursuance of a profoundly anti-gay agenda would be hard to find. Yet despite all their calumnies, insults and attempts to influence public opinion, they haven’t been able to stop gays getting what they want. Marriage equality is now an established fact and Christians (or anyone else for that matter) who choose to discriminate in the provision of goods and services are punished by the law.

        Game, set and match to the LGBT community, I think. Much to the chagrin of Christians everywhere. It’s quite comical to watch the hysterical meltdowns this provokes. “Waaah! It’s not fair! Stop them getting mawwied or I’ll scweam and scweam until I turn blue!”

        Go right ahead. And then when you’ve screamed yourself hoarse and gays can still get married, pick yourself up, survey the damage you’ve done to your own reputation by acting like a spoiled child, and contemplate the transformation of your churches into single issue pressure groups that sit on the margins of society servicing the prejudices and hatreds of immigrant populations. That’s Christianity’s future in this country.

        • Sybaseguru

          My source was a defence lawyer here in UK, based on her work in prisons. You sound very much like the people you seek to portray with your generalisations – an OTT Richard Dawkins – and a few years on even he admits Christianity may be better than the alternatives!

    • chiefofsinners

      Christians love homosexuals. Christ calls us to love everyone, as He did.
      I have done many wrong things, but I’m grateful to God for loving me enough to tell me.

      • Findaráto

        The Christians who comment on this blog love nobody but themselves and nothing but their opinions.

        A Christian who claims to love gays and then systematically insults and abuses them “for their own good” is no different to a man who claims to love his wife and then beats and derides her, also “for her own good”.

        I often wonder how many of the wives of men who comment here sport black eyes and bruises on a regular basis. If they “get above themselves” or start to dispute their husbands’ “God-given” status as lord and master, it would be a “loving act” to “correct” them, wouldn’t it?

        No wonder Christian marriages break down so readily, and no wonder the gay children of Christian families are estranged from them, often for life. What Christians call “love” everyone else experiences as abuse and hatred.

        • chiefofsinners

          Only one commentator on this blog is systematically insulting and abusive.

          • Findaráto

            Perhaps he merely responds in kind.

            Christians really dislike looking glasses, don’t they. Seeing their own hatred and abuse reflected back at them makes them deeply uncomfortable.

          • chiefofsinners

            At the risk of stating the obvious, if he was responding in kind then he wouldn’t be the only one.
            Christians are those who have the courage to look at themselves in the mirror every day. Not your fairground mirror, but the word of God, which shows us ourselves as we are.

          • Did your Catholic family reject your homosexuality, Linus? Is this the source of your bitterness?

        • The Explorer

          From his experiences as a hospital doctor, Theodore Dalrymple gives horrifying examples of violence towards women in modern Britain. The overwhelming causes are sexual jealousy, or resentment of the woman’s offspring by other partners. (Not one of the victims cited is married or has ever been.) Religious convictions play no part in the violence, for there are no religious convictions. Dalrymple has no religious act to grind, since he is an atheist. .

        • gelert

          Christians who abuse their wives are not following Christian precepts.

          Muslims who abuse their wives are flowing the teachings of the Koran.

    • The Explorer

      You may be right about the attitudes, but I query your accuracy about the frequency. This thread is about anti-Semitism and the political impartiality of the priesthood.

      I have not read every comment, but of the 150+ on the thread so far every one I have looked at prior to yours related either to anti-Semitism or to different understandings of the priesthood. Until you introduced it as an issue, and drew responses, I did not find any that related to homosexuality.

      • Findaráto

        The fake archbishop’s blog post claims it’s ridiculous to say that a racist 1960s manifesto means that today’s Conservatives are racist.

        I have debunked this claim by drawing attention to the parallel example of homophobia, which is just as rife in Conservative Christian circles today as it was in the 60s, proof of which can be seen on virtually every comments thread on this blog.

        I don’t believe that the current Conservative leadership is overtly racist (or homophobic for that matter) but there are plenty of Tories who are and the Rundell chap against whom the fake archbishop’s misleading diatribe is directed is merely casting daylight on a significant and potentially dangerous undercurrent within the Conservative party.

        If he wants to defend it, he’s going to have to do better than “that was then, this is now and things have changed”. Things have not changed, as the attitudes towards homosexuality expressed in this blog illustrate so very clearly. Racism has gone underground in the Tory Party and is rarely talked about in public, but old attitudes die hard and the mere passage of time does not prove they have been eradicated.

        • The Explorer

          A belief that the Sun goes round the Earth may change over time to a belief that the Earth goes round the Sun. That does not mean that a belief in 1016 that murder is wrong will have changed by 2016 to a belief that murder is right. Some things change, but others don’t.

          As I said in my previous post, I was not arguing that religious conservatives have changed their attitudes. I agree that they haven’t. I was querying your use of the word ‘fills’: which seems to me an overstatement.

          • Dominic Stockford

            And unless you’re a spaceman it doesn’t really matter which goes round which.

          • The Explorer

            Which is why we still talk about sunrise and sunset.

          • Findaráto

            When the truth makes you uncomfortable, you call it “overstatement” and seek to minimise it and render it more palatable to your conscience.

          • The Explorer

            What makes me more uncomfortable is when something that isn’t the truth is stated as such.

          • Findaráto

            Considering the fuss this blog makes of Old Ma Mountbatten and the number of threads dedicated to licking her sensible shoes that we’ve seen here lately, what you really mean is that homosexuality is one of the main topics of conversation here.

            Its relevance to this thread is to highlight an example where Tory attitudes have, for a significant number of those who would normally vote Conservative, not changed since 1964.

            The fake archbishop claimed this wasn’t possible, but we see that it actually is. One of his main arguments against Rundell’s position is therefore completely demolished.

            Tories can and do hang on to generations-old prejudices. Rundell is right about many Tories. He may not be right about most of them, but a significant number are demonstrably prejudiced against various minorities, so Rundell is right to point that out.

          • The Explorer

            Consider a white rapist. Can he choose not to rape? Can he choose not to be white? Can he choose not to be male?

            Traditionally, we would have said he can choose not to rape, but cannot choose his race or his sex. Today we would say he can choose his race (courtesy of Rachel Dolezal), and his gender, but his sexual behaviour is predetermined unless he turns himself into a female and removes the physical wherewithal to rape.
            To that extent, it has become possible to say that one’s race and one’s sexual orientation are now the reverse of what they were considered to be in 1964.

          • Findaráto

            Oh the subtlety! You replace homosexuality with rape in your example, as if the two activities were interchangeable and thus morally equivalent.

            Need I point out that rape is not a sexual orientation. It is not consensual. It physically and psychologically damages its victims. Everyone agrees that it is a highly reprehensible crime.

            If you’re going to try and manipulate opinion, you’ll need to be just a little more subtle than that. The clumsiness and transparency of your tactics in trying to associate gays and rapists as comparable offenders is quite frankly laughable. You may convince your fellow homophobic Christian bigots. You won’t convince anyone else.

          • The Explorer

            “Need I point out that rape is not a sexual orientation.” Actually, biological determinism would not agree with you. It says rapists are born, not made. That, as I understand it, is the argument advanced by Thornhill and Palmer in their book ‘A Natural History of Rape’.
            In 1964, there was still a belief about behavioural choice. You could choose to be a rapist, but you could not choose your ethnicity. Now, with postmodern fluidity, you can choose your ethnicity and your gender, but not your sexual behaviour. That seems to me to be an inconsistency. If you are free to choose your ethnicity and your gender, you ought to be free to choose your sexual orientation/behaviour or whatever as well.

        • CliveM

          As is usual your ability to misrepresent and talk ballocks is breathtaking.
          This site is conservative with a small c. It does not represent the Conservative party. Indeed if you had made any attempt to engage brain before you sallied forth in one of you usual tediously long attacks, you would have remembered that the majority of commentators on this site are not Conservatives, big C, but UKIP supporters.

          • Findaráto

            The fake archbishop is a Conservative.

            You and several others who comment here may be deluded enough to vote for Ukip, but this site doesn’t belong to you. You’re just random commenters.

            I’m not surprised by the proprietorial attitude however. The whole world belongs to you, doesn’t it? At least in your own self-obsessed estimation.

            In reality you’ve been evicted from just about every position of power and now have little control over anything, but still the delusion of power persists. And probably will until you expire.

            Cheer up though! Not long to wait now. The EU referendum is almost upon us and when the country votes to remain, you may be one of the lucky ones who bursts a blood vessel in a fit of rage and frustration and is spared the indignity of seeing his plans for revenge on every minority come to nothing.

          • CliveM

            Except it wasn’t Cranmer who you explicitly accused but the commentators;

            “One only has to read the constant homophobic abuse that fills the comments threads of this blog to understand that the kind of Conservative who congregates here hasn’t moved an inch in his attitudes since 1964.”

            I merely pointed out the stupidity of trying to draw a correlation between the commentators on the blog and today’s Conservative party.

            FYI I have never voted UKIP and I would challenge you to find a single comment of mine supporting them.

          • Findaráto

            The natural political allegiance of most who comment here is the Conservative Party. Some may now support the single issue Ukip Party because their xenophobia has temporarily outweighed their reactionary instincts, but this won’t last. Whatever the outcome of the EU referendum, they’ll drift back to the Conservatives because there’s no other realistic destination for them.

            In the unlikely outcome that we leave Europe, there’ll be a coup to oust Cameron and Johnson or some other Euroskeptic will take over. Faced with the choice of a viable government on one side and a bunch of swivel-eyed and marginal loons on the other, Ukip support will drain away to the Conservatives. That’s where it naturally belongs.

            If we remain in Europe, the issue of “independence” will be off the table for the foreseeable future and those who support Ukip now for tactical reasons will have no more reason to do so. Where else but to the Conservatives will they go? They might not like Cameron, but if faced with a choice between him and Corbyn, there’s only one way they can cast their vote.

            This is the bind in which Ukip supporters find themselves. They’re so focused on this single issue of the referendum that they haven’t even bothered to look at what lies beyond. Their return to the Conservative fold is inevitable, which is why describing those who comment here as Conservatives is completely accurate. They may be Conservatives masquerading under another identity at the moment, but scratch the surface and the only colour you’ll find is true blue.

          • CliveM

            Well that’s a very long winded and tortuous attempt to justify why your accusation is wrong. So let’s summarise your position;

            “The Priest is right to say that, based on a 1964 leaflet, the Conservative Party of today is racist, because the UKIP supporting contributors on this site are homophobes. But this is alright because one day in the future, based on personal conjecture, they will vote Conservative.”

          • Findaráto

            The mere passage of time hasn’t rendered many Conservatives less homophobic than they were in the 1960s. So why would it miraculously change their attitude to race?

            The fake archbishop said that nobody can seriously believe Conservatives would still hold attitudes they held in 1964. Only many of them clearly do. One of the main planks of his argument against Rundell is therefore shown to support no weight at all.

            Time does not erase bigotry and prejudice. It often distills and concentrates it.

        • Uncle Brian

          You haven’t debunked anything at all and you know it.

        • Peter Grimes

          Psst!

          As you appear to be as stupid as you are ill-informed, I would like to point out that the real Archbishop Cranmer died in 1556.

          The erudite author of this blog does not claim to be either that Cranmer or a real Archbishop, although he may well be one of the many latter. He uses a nom-de-plume (a pen name for the ignorant like you) and so the abusive ‘pseudo’ is totally unwarranted, but a nut job like you would know that.

          • Findaráto

            If the fake archbishop is actually real then Atheists may be pleasantly surprised by the rate of Anglican decline.

            Most of us give the Church of England less than a generation before factional infighting causes it to splinter into a myriad of competing and hostile sects, which will then disappear into irrelevant obscurity.

            But if the fake archbishop is in charge of things, we can clearly expect this to happen much sooner.

            What’s that? 10 years at most, do you think? I’m inclined to agree. Who’ll pop her clogs first? The Church or her Supreme Governor? Now there are some odds that only a foolhardy man would bet on.

          • Peter Grimes

            ‘Most of us…’?

            How many of you fuckwits exist?

            ‘…Odds…’?

            What odds would you bet that Leicester City would never win the Premiership?

    • William Lewis

      Not everything revolves around your particular sexual practice. Even Romans 1 has other fish to fry.

      • CliveM

        Don’t say that, Linus doesn’t like it when the attention isn’t fully on him. His whole purpose on commenting is to hijack threads and talk about his favourite subject ……. Himself.

  • pobjoy

    The Thirty-Nine Articles, in their original Latin, make the distinction between the Anglican concept of ‘priest’ and the Roman concept of ‘priesthood’ very clear. It refers to de ordinatione Presbyterorum, the ordination of presbyters, or elders, who in the church have no spiritual authority beyond that of the elders in the Israel of Moses. In Israel, the sacerdotal role was ‘a shadow of what was to come’, in Paul’s words. It was pre-figurement of Christ, whose own priesthood totally abolished all pretence of human priesthood, once and forever, if the New Testament is truth. Whereas, in the Articles, the Roman concept is described in pagan terms: vulgo dicebatur sacerdotem offerre Christum in remissionem poenae aut culpae, the claim of Rome to offer Christ in remission for guilt and punishment. Any Roman plebeian under Julius Caesar would have recognised that principle, less the reference to Christ.

    So this appalling man is not only unchristian, he is actively antichrist, one of those ‘denying the the Master who bought them’ (2 Pe 2:1).

  • geo

    too many heads on the left firmly shoved into the ground, fingers in their ears…
    Labour seek support from the islamic community who hate jews.
    They recruit councilors and mayors and mps from the islamic community who hate jews.
    Their own leader calls islamic murdering terrorists his friends and frequently platforms with the worst sort of islamic hate preachers
    finally:
    their mayor candidate for london has a history of standing side by side and supporting islamic hatemongers who call for the ethnic cleansing of the jews
    … and all this is a right wing plot? Tin foil hat anyone?

    • SonofBoudica

      Labour depends on the Muslim vote in a huge number of its constituencies and as such is really a prisoner of Islamic pressure.

      • TJB

        Nail. Head. Hit.

      • bluedog

        Exactly. The natural successor to the Labour Party is the Muslim Brotherhood. Dare one ask Sadiq Khan, in the strictest confidence, if this is a likely outcome?

  • Royinsouthwest

    Can we all get back to the subject of anti-semitism in the Labour Party and among some left-leaning clerics and the prejudice of those clerics against those who do not share their political views? The subject of Cranmer’s latest article is not homosexuality, much as Findaráto wishes it were, nor is it the Thirty-Nine Articles of the Church of England.

    • Anton

      Yes. good idea. I’ll repost my comment on that in the succeeding paragraphs. But is it possible that the problem will worsen if Labour courts the vote of certain postwar immigrant communities?

      What Ken Livingstone said was, factually, fairly accurate; but why did he choose to say it as part of this controversy? It merely fanned the flames.

      I do not doubt that socialist Jews are welcome in the Labour party; look at the Milibands, for example. And I agree with Ken Livingstone that there is a valid distinction between anti-Zionism and anti-semitism. But I ask this question (not with any individual in mind): when somebody who claims to be merely anti-Zionist holds Israel to a higher standard than he (or she) holds other nations, what is that other than anti-semitism?

    • pobjoy

      The subject is not anti-semitism in the Labour Party. It is an opportunistic attempt to pass off as left-wing a movement that has always been associated with police states, totalitarianism, fascism and Nazism.

  • SonofBoudica

    Not surprised really. The Catholic Church turned a blind eye to Hitler’s genocide and then actively helped Nazis to escape from Germany to South America.

    • len

      The RCC thought they were using Hitler as a tool to oppose Communism which the RCC perceived as a greater threat than fascism. Mussolini also had alliances with the RCC.

      • gelert

        But why would they help the Nazis escape to South America after the war when Nazism was defeated ?

        • Anton

          Cardinal Siri is no longer around to be asked.

          • gelert

            “The Real Odessa”, by Uki Goñi, reveals all.

        • len

          The Nazis had accumulated vast amounts of wealth which they had stolen when they were in power which they took with them to South America.The Nazis also had technology which was useful to the dictators in South American and also methods of ‘controlling populations ‘which those in South America were interested in.

          • “There was a hope in the RCC that the Nazis would re- group and come back into power … “
            ROFL
            (Ahem) Evidence?

          • len

            reepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~confido/catholic.html

          • That’s not evidence, Len.

          • len

            I don`t think any evidence would convince you Jack because you can only believe what the RCC tells you to believe…..

        • Anton

          To bolster the anti-communist movement there at a time when communism was rising on that continent.

        • anne_jay

          same reason america employed nazi rocket scientists

      • pobjoy

        In 1939, Stalin’s USSR had a non-aggression pact with the Nazis that would probably have lasted through the war, had the lunatic Adolf not taken umbrage at having to pay for Russian oil and minerals, prompting his invasion of Russia in 1941. That was a long time in which to side with Hitler without thinking him any threat to the USSR, which was run in much the same way as Germany, Italy and Japan, anyway. Run with the support of the Vatican, itself the product of a police state.

    • Noa

      Your comment might be more balanced if you also noted the Jews who were hidden in the Vatican.

      • pobjoy

        The Vatican saved perhaps 6000 Jews. But that was a publicity stunt, after signing the death warrants of 6 million more.

        • Noa

          Funny, that. I thought they were murdered by the democratically elected socialist German government of the time. Why wasn’t the Pope indicted and hung with the other war criminals at Nuremburg if what you claim was true?

          • pobjoy

            Funny, that.

    • Coniston

      I am not a Roman Catholic, but I think some commentators allow their antipathy to Rome to colour their judgement.

      Both the Protestant and the Catholic Churches in Nazi Germany had a very mixed relationship with the Nazis. In Protestantism, The National Reich Church (The German Evangelical Church) supported the Nazis; the Confessing Church opposed them. The Catholic Church was also divided, but nationalism was not as deeply embedded in the German Catholic Church. In 1937 Pius XI issued ‘Mit brennender Sorge’, accusing the government of “fundamental hostility” to the church. Some Catholics (as with some Protestants) supported the Nazis.

      The Dutch Jewish philosopher, Edith Stein, converted to Catholicism and became a Carmelite nun before the war. In 1942 The Dutch Bishops’ Conference had a public statement read in all the churches of the nation condemning Nazi racism. In response, the Reichskommissar of the Netherlands ordered the arrest of all Jewish converts who had previously been spared. Edith Stein, as with many others, was arrested, and gassed later that year. This undoubtedly caused the Vatican to temper its public criticism of the Nazis.

      During the Nazi era, the Catholic Church rescued many thousands of Jews by issuing false documents, lobbying Axis officials, hiding them in monasteries, convents, schools and elsewhere; including in the Vatican and papal residence at Castel Gandolfo. Some at the Vatican, however, were anti-Semitic.

      The Catholic Bishop of Munster, von Galen, led Catholic protests against Nazi euthanasia and denounced Gestapo lawlessness and the persecution of the church. In 1941 he delivered three sermons in which denounced the arrest of Jesuits, the confiscation of church property, attacks on the Church, and in the third, the euthanising of invalids. The sermons were illegally circulated in print, inspiring some German Resistance groups, including the White Rose. He was lucky to escape arrest.

      Neither the Protestant nor the Catholic Churches had unblemished records in the Nazi era. Who can say if we would have done any better in this country?

  • len

    The root of anti- Semitism is spiritual. The main problem in this secular dominated age is that ‘modern man’ relying solely on his’ reason’ is spiritually blind therefore a willing tool blindly following whatever ‘the god of this age’ is able to persuade him is’ the right thing to do’.
    how clever of Satan to persuade people that he doesn’t exist and is therefore able to carry out his deceptions without hindrance.
    Those who are anti- Semitic can always provide a ‘good reason’ for being so…(in their own minds at least)

  • McRobbie

    So what if it is a right wing plot ? It IS a left wing problem based on bigotry and envy of those who strive to better themselves by work based on the capitalist principle of entrepreneurship.

  • Allosaurus

    Mr Rundell appears to be a self-indulgent twerp. There’s no danger, I suppose, that his employers might insist he get on with the job he is paid to do, and stop embarrassing everyone with his childish self-dramatizing?

    • Uncle Brian

      I’d say that’s a pretty safe bet. No danger at all.

  • deltamike67

    Obviously, when Priests stop reading scripture, they go off track like this one.

  • Med Jumper

    Is he saying that Labour is Right Wing, or the Labour Party on select Right Wingers?

  • Reborn

    Sounds like pal of the Rev Stephen Sizer.

    • Anton

      While I disagree resolutely with Stephen Sizer’s views on Israel, he appears to be an exemplary member of the evangelical wing of the CoE in all other respects.

    • len

      Sizer is a total disgrace …

  • Gladiatrix

    Surely the simplest way to deal with this man is to take it up with his diocesan bishop

    • Dominic Stockford

      You can make an official complaint, but you need to be in the parish, or have other good reason to do so. Even then the procedure is tortuous, and you have to be prepared for the fact that he will be given your name at the start of the process.

      • Ridcully

        It might be easier to have him sectioned, as the man is clearly as mad as a goose on stilts.

  • David323

    It’s actually a left wing plot – perpetuated by the Blairites.

    The Labour party is deeply split – has no one noticed? 🙂

  • Neil2

    You don’t have to be mental to be a priest, but it helps.

  • Noa

    I suspect he really wants to be an Imam. Having compared the respective attendances at his local mosque with those at this own sermons he has identified the ‘way forward’.

  • beautykinguk

    The man is a disgrace to the church.

  • Dreadnaught

    It should be of no surprise to anyone with even a light knowledge of 20th Century history that the anti-Semetism prevalent in today’s Labour Party is attributable to the association between Hitler and Al-Husseni the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem in the 1920s. Al-Husseni knew how to feed Hitler’s hatred of the Jews and with tangible evidence of Jewish emigration into the province commonly known as Palestine (or Greater Syria as it was to the Ottomans) exploited the opportunity to see himself as the new Caliph. Today we have two or three generations of Brits who are ignorant of this and have been brainwashed into believing that in 1967 the Israelis declared war on ‘Palestine’ and took the ‘Palestinians’ land when in effect it was today’s so-called Palestinians originally from Syria, Jordan, Lebanon who gatecrashed the British Mandate pre-WW2, just like they are doing in Europe now as part of Islamic Jihad known as ‘hajid’.
    The Labour Party in the UK now sucks up to Muslims (being her in greater number than the Jews who previously helped fund it) openly foisted on us by Blair, to shore up the Party numbers and every Muslim is now a persecuted ‘Palestinian’. The dick-heads and the naive, have swallowed this scam hook line and sinker. Nothing welds as permanently as a shared sense of deep grievance and perceived injustice and the Party machines waste no time in exploiting this.

    • Anton

      Yes, there is anecdotal evidence that Haj Amin al-Husseini turned the Nazis from thoughts of expulsion of the Jews from the Greater Reich, to extermination. Among other things he had far greater access to Reinhard Heydrich, the author of the Holocaust, than he did to Hitler.

      Certainly there was relatively unrestricted illegal Arab immigration into Mandatory Palestine, for the British Governor of the Sinai, C.S. Jarvis, passed comment to the effect that: “This illegal Arab immigration was not only going on from Sinai, but also from Transjordan and Syria, and it was very difficult to make out a case for the misery of the Arabs if at the same time their compatriots from adjoining states could not be kept from going in to share that misery.” (Report of a discussion, in United Empire magazine, London, vol. 28 pp. 632-3; 1937.)

      • Dreadnaught

        Not so much anecdotal as factually historical.

        • Anton

          If you have decent references that do more than anecdotally tie Haj Amin to the change of Nazi plan from expulsion to extermination of the Jews then I’d be very glad of them.

          • Dreadnaught

            Can’t take you direct Anton but this is a good place to begin.
            https://palestineisraelconflict.wordpress.com/about/

          • Uncle Brian

            Anton. The most detailed account I’ve read of Husseini’s love affair with Nazi Germany is in Efraim Karsh’s book, Palestine Betrayed, in particular Chapter 3, entitled “The Most Important Arab Quisling”. I’m rereading that chapter now but I have to say I don’t recollect anything in it to suggest that it was Husseini who “turned the Nazis from thoughts of expulsion of the Jews from the Greater Reich, to extermination.”

            On the other hand, I don’t think Karsh ever mentions Heydrich – at least there’s no entry for Heydrich in the index. The subject of the book, of course, is the history of the Palestinian nationalist movement, not the history of Nazi Germany, and it’s quite a short book, only 257 pages, not including the appendices, notes and index.

          • Anton

            I’ve read that book and have just taken it off my shelf to reread that chapter. But I’m impressed with a subpage of Dreadnought’s recommendation, namely

            https://palestineisraelconflict.wordpress.com/2015/10/24/amin-al-husseini-the-founder-of-palestinian-jihad-and-the-aggravtor-behind-the-holocaust/

            which also took me to

            http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/3381

            These are better references for the Haj Amin – Holocaust link than the one I knew of, which has anyway been taken offline.

          • Uncle Brian

            Anton and Dreadnaught, thank you both for those links.

          • len

            ‘Adolf Eichmann’s deputy, SS-Hauptsturmführer Dieter Wisliceny, stated at his Nuremberg trial that “in my opinion, the Grand Mufti, who has been in Berlin since 1941, played a role in the decision of the German government to exterminate the European Jews, the importance of which must not be disregarded. He has repeatedly suggested to the various authorities with whom he has been in contact, above all before Hitler, Ribbentrop and Himmler, the extermination of European Jewry. He considered this as a comfortable solution for the Palestine problem.”’

    • alternative_perspective

      My question though is how do we get from Hitler’s support of Al-Husseni, and vice versa, to the contemporary Labour party’s anti-Semitic posture?
      I don’t believe its an artefact of the early Labour movement that owed more to Methodism than to Marx. It seems to be a more modern development but I’m willing to stand corrected.
      My guess is that by moving from a platform of equity and justice founded in the expression of God’s will for his people to one based on pure materialism it effectively equated all values, all belief systems, or ways of living and thoroughly established a relativistic ethic guided by pragmatism. In such a system a terrorist is just another man’s freedom fighter; all narratives are opinion and all minority groups are pitted against each other for state patrimony. Thus as you rightly point out it becomes a numbers game and the muslims have the numbers. Numbers strengthen opinion and the dominant opinion becomes the accepted truth.
      So personally I cannot work out how we get from Hitler to Corbyn.

  • Dominic Stockford

    I used to minister (for a different denomination) in a parish which included that area of Plymouth. I am amazed that he gets much support there – even the many Labour voters there had what might be termed conservative views on such matters. I am saddened that he is allowed to peddle this unpleasantness there.

    • Old Nick

      The Daily Mirror has recently bought the Plymouth Herald (and the Western Morning News).

  • Allyup

    What he really needs is a tinfoil hat to protect his brain from right wingers taking over his mind

    An even bigger risk is from alien reptilians who eat human flesh for DNA to maintain their holographic illusion of being human (you are what you eat!).
    They also eat humans for pleasure, and priests are reckoned to be a delicacy (like dogs and duck’s feet are in China).
    Costco are reckoned to have the thickest foil. Working on the basis that thicker people need thicker foil I would say 4-5 layers of Costo foil should do the trick.

    • chrisjones2

      Doesnt God keep them out?

    • Thats_news

      He needs tinfoil underpants because he has his brains in his bottom.

  • ZX10

    Interesting so going by this foolish child’s thinking all who vote Tory are racist because something one person did unofficially 50 years ago ?
    OK so then all Labour members including him are supporters of child sexual abuse because 3 of their highest party officials publicly supported paedophile rights in the 70’s -80’s?

  • Redrose82

    Fr. Simon Rundell is a fine example of why I, and hundreds of thousands of Christians like me, no longer attend church.

    • Anton

      Good news for you: Christ is worshipped in other places than the CoE.

    • Perhaps you and the “hundreds of thousands of Christians” like you, should challenge such ministers instead of deserting Our Lord.

      • len

        Many Christians have left the church but remained ‘Christian’ sometimes a lot stronger with the Holy Spirit guiding them instead of a ‘false shepherd’.
        The Good Shepherd and His Sheep
        10 “Very truly I tell you Pharisees, anyone who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber. 2 The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5 But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”(John 10)

      • pobjoy

        What do you think Mr Rundell would say, if challenged?

        • Ridcully

          He’d probably accuse you of being vitriolic.

          • pobjoy

            As the demon-possessed do.

    • rptrpt.rpt

      bonkers rundell more appropriate.i look back on my life and wonder where they get their ideas from. almost makes you think that some people should be wearing those aluminimum head covers!!

    • Findaráto

      Well done Rundell! With fire-breathing, God-as-hatred bigots on one side, and bleeding-heart, anything-goes, God-as-lurve liberals on the other, the ranks of Atheism benefit from a pincer movement driving the church-going public out of faith and into reason.

      But we can’t just thank Rundell. We also owe a massive debt to swivel-eyed loons like Andrea Williams, Mark Davies, Michael Nazir-Ali and all the other arch-conservative gay-hating fundamentalists for applying pressure from the other side.

      May they keep it up! Public revulsion for heavily politicized and quite frankly crazy religious obsessives is the best recruitment tactic Atheists never devised!

      • alternative_perspective

        Dear Findus
        I really don’t understand you. I try and I try to unpick your arguments, to understand where you’re coming from but I just can’t find anything sensible. What frustrates me most is you’re clearly an intelligent chap and you write with deep passion and conviction but everything you seem to write is frankly.. hateful. I feel somewhat distressed when I come upon your comments, my heart literally sinks when I see your posts because I know there will be nothing constructive in them, no argument or persuasion just, pure and unadulterated “vitriol” and spite.
        Surely you’re not like this in the real world, I simply cannot imagine someone behaving like such a brat in their day-to-day existence.
        You repeatedly condemn, as you do in this post, polar argumentation and the lack of nuance displaced by some commenters here but in the very same text you do exactly the same. Conservatives are reduced to gay haters and you label people you’ve never met as swivel eyed loons?
        You claim the high ground of “reason” but I never (and I do mean never) see any reasons coming from you to support your truth claims and the veracity of atheism. You demand “reason” but rarely display it.
        Why? Where does this hate come from? What is the cause of your rage and intolerance? What are you arguing for? What do you actually want? Why for instance do you even visit this site? What arguments do you have to persuade us of your position? What evidences will you provide? What weds you so intimately to your own cause? What affirms the truth of your claims? What, do you believe, justifies the outright nastiness of your posts? How can you live with this bile, bubbling away within you?
        How can there be reason when all we get is a deafening hate. How can there be dialogue when your posts a little more than rhetorical monologues? Do you think any of this supports your cause? Do you believe your actions and words support the “goodness” of atheism or the worthiness of your beliefs? Do you think you look “reasonable” to us?
        I’m quite sure you’ll say, you don’t care. But why? Why don’t you care? When you’re so quick to condemn intolerance in others and to demand their acceptance, how can you care so little about them and what they believe? How can you hate so readily when from the same people you demand peace?
        Even if they are wrong, does their “evil” justify yours?

        • Findaráto

          Bravo! I haven’t seen a rant of quite such hysterical proportions on this blog for some time. I’d almost be impressed if it made any sense.

          Only someone lost in narcissistic admiration of himself and his beliefs could see valid criticism as “hatred” and “bile”. This is the very problem that renders Christians absolutely deaf to all voices but their own.

          You validate your own opinion by calling it God and making it divine. Anyone who disagrees with you can therefore be dismissed as an evil heretic.

          Self-fulfilling prophecies and those who peddle them need to be exposed for the frauds they are. Too many have been damaged by the lies told by Christians and their Church. Anything that contributes to bringing them down can only be beneficial to society in the long run.

          • CliveM

            “Bravo! I haven’t seen a rant of quite such hysterical proportions on this blog for some time. I’d almost be impressed if it made any sense.”

            Priceless.

          • Pubcrawler

            As is the sentence that follows it. Funniest thing he’s ever contributed, it’s quite made my day!

            Grabbed before it disappears.

          • CliveM

            Indeed, you couldn’t make it up!

          • alternative_perspective

            Valid criticism starts with pointing a flaw in the logic of an argument or an axiom of belief you disagree with. It then progresses on to proposing a correction to the logic and, or, an alternative to the prior axiom with something superior. You have never once done that.

            You call people names. You be-little your fellow human being. You accuse people of things you cannot possible know. You throw insults around with no regard to people’s feelings. And you never engage in a proper debate. When I say you are hateful, I have a plenitude of evidence to draw upon to validate my claim.

            I asked you, pleasantly to explain yourself. I truly wanted to understand your reasoning, your logic and justification. Granted I get a tad frustrated with your anger but I honestly asked you to open up and give me some answers. But NO. You have nothing but “hysterical” criticism and insults to offer. You have no arguments. You have no points to make; only anger to express.

            Seriously please consider this for one moment , where does:

            “Anyone who disagrees with you can therefore be dismissed as an evil heretic” come from?

            Or what about:

            “You validate your own opinion by calling it God and making it divine.”

            Where did I even mention God? I did not.

            Did you even bother to read my post or do you just assume what people say and impose a meaning of your own?

            My hunch is your post betrays your own nature and your accusations are reflections of your true-self.
            But herein lies the truth. You were hurt or offended by the church. And now in revenge you have decided upon a collective punishment for the sins of the few. You have become the very “fraud”, “peddling” “lies” of your own creation that you so despise.
            Your atheism isn’t a ejection of truth, or even God it would seem. If it were a matter of intellect you would counter with an intellectual argument but you don’t. Your words are hateful, however much you protest -I’m sorry this is a cold, hard fact- and filled with emotion. You have been hurt and it would appear you choose to hurt others in turn.

          • Findaráto

            You’re perfectly correct when you assume that I have not read your last comments in their entirety. Why would I? They weren’t written for me to read. Their purpose was to catalogue my supposed character flaws and crimes against Christians in a sustained effort at character assassination.

            The point of your attack is to discredit me in the eyes of those who post here, although quite why you’re bothering, I don’t know. It seems like a supremely pointless exercise. As a constant critic of Christianity and Christians, I’m already anathema to those I criticise. You might as well harangue a pork chop at a bar mitzvah – it’s already been judged to be an abomination by all those present, so launching a sustained tirade of insults and criticisms at it won’t encourage them to hate it any more than they already do.

            I’m hated here because I reflect society’s real opinion of your preposterous religion and the basket cases who follow it. I remind you of your impotence and inability to influence social debate. I bring home the fact that the story of Christianity in the Western World is one of failure and decline. As such, all the hatred and frustration you feel for the modern world and secular society can be safely vomited all over me.

            By all means, do continue. I have no problem being hated by Christians. As response after response to my posts illustrate perfectly, your false claims about loving your enemies, your desire to shout opposition down, and your ingrained prejudice against anyone who won’t conform to your arbitrary rules and regulations expose you for the breathtaking hypocrites you are.

            The number of upvotes I’ve received during my time here says it all: those who I want to listen are listening and learning, which is all that matters to me.

          • “The number of upvotes I’ve received during my time here says it all … “
            Yep; with 82 up-votes for 710 comments (0.01%) you sure are having an impact.

          • Findaráto

            What’s in a name, I wonder? You certainly like to call me by another. And then you refuse to take account all the upvotes he got?

            How uncharitable! How very typical of you. You want to have your cake and eat it too. To call me by another name and then refuse to acknowledge all that implies.

            The minds of manipulators like you are so very, very twisted.

          • Oh, you must mean the accounts you deleted, Linus. How many is it now? One loses count. As Jack recalls, the ratio of up-votes to comments was even lower than the poor showing of your current identity.

          • Findaráto

            Jack recalls exactly what it suits him to recall, whether it be true or false. He has a small man’s ability to twist events to his advantage. Other small and/or damaged people seem to fall for it. But anyone with even a modicum of insight can see him for what he really is.

          • Well if you stopped deleting accounts and attempting to deceive readers with new identities, Jack wouldn’t have to rely on his memory. Why do you do it?

            82 / 714

          • William Lewis

            I doubt anyone hates you, finders, but many pity you I suspect. So much bile and anger can’t be good for a chap. I’ve never known anyone who projects as much as you do. So little self awareness is quite remarkable.

          • Findaráto

            Ah, it’s pity is it? The very emotion the people who post here inspire in me. What else can you feel for a bunch of (mainly old, but a few young) fogies lost in the superstitions conditioned into their heads as children?

            And then there are those of you who got religion in adulthood after some kind of breakdown or intense psychological stress. Formerly rational adults taking refuge in children’s tales. And all of you determined to condemn everyone who won’t bow down to your fictional god to an eternity of suffering as punishment for not believing you.

            Pity is the only emotion it’s possible to feel.

          • William Lewis

            FWIW I became a Christian at a point of considerable personal happiness and contentment in my adult life. I have absolutely no desire to condemn anyone of anything or to anything and I am quite content that my faith is at least as reasonable and rational as my agnosticism that preceded it.

          • “Only someone lost in narcissistic admiration of himself and his beliefs could mistake hatred and bile for “valid criticism. This is the very problem that renders Linus absolutely deaf to all voices but his own.”

            Jack thought he’d correct your typos.

    • alternative_perspective

      Dear Redrose88:

      “let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another” Hebrews 10.
      I understand your plight but giving up on the entire body of Christ is not the solution.

  • Colonel Mustard

    Priests who confuse and conflate hard left politics with religion have put me right of the Anglican Church. Since they are supposed to minister impartially to all it seems a conflict of interest for them to publicly express and incite hatred towards Tories, as well as not very Christian.

    Here are some texts for Fr Rundell. He might like to consider them for his sermon.

    “You shall do no injustice in judgement; you shall not be partial to the poor nor defer to the great, but you are to judge your neighbour fairly.” (Leviticus 19:15)

    “But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors” (James 2:9)

    “I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of His chosen angels, to maintain these principles without bias, doing nothing in a spirit of partiality.” (Timothy 5:21)

    • anne_jay

      i wonder what your position on pro-ira priests was

      yay or nay?

  • Odo Saunders

    This incident confirms why the Church of England is no longer considered to be of any relevance in our modern society. The other Sunday I attended my local church and all the congregation were 55 years and above. I thought that in twenty years my parish church will have been closed and turned into ?. Throughout Worcestershire there are numerous abandoned churches with For Sale signs outside them. This is entirely the fault of the current church hierachy, who appear these days to be nothing more than the Labour Party at prayer! What these foolish priests do not realise is thay most members of the Labour Party are either atheists or Moslems!

    • CliveM

      “This is entirely the fault of the current church hierarchy “!

      So the decline of the CofE is entirely the fault of the current leadership? Really? The decline has been going on since the mid ’50’s so I fail to see how that is all the current lots fault.

    • anne_jay

      david cameron spent more energy on gay marriage than ‘cracking down’ on heavy islamic immigration from former colonies such as ceylon or sylhet, i bet you guys loved that
      i don’t get all the sudden solidarity with israel coming from the catholic church – you realise transexuals openly walk the streets there!?
      they might even be allowed abortions, gasp

  • Blob

    “iPreist”.

    That is why this country is being islamised, and why the CoE has all but died out.

    • anne_jay

      you think shin bet don’t have online wings?

      • Blob

        I only speak English.

        • anne_jay

          גוי מטומטם

          • יהודי חצוף

          • Uncle Brian

            [Coughs discreetly] ?נקבה

          • יהודי נקבה מטומטם

          • Thats_news

            Tro y byddwch yn cau i fyny

          • IrishNeanderthal

            I used to argue much more on the web, but these days:

            Sgin i’m math o fynadd!

      • Spinmeister

        Is there a blog that you don;t appear to give your rancid anti-Semitic views>

        • anne_jay

          coming from a guy called spinmeister who stalks across disqus to push a hard isaraeli line? riiiiight

          • Spinmeister

            Just woken up? time to meet your brethren down at the dole office?

          • anne_jay

            why leave the house? cage put the cash directly into the account 🙂

            4 million kid, read it and weep – when was the last church or synagogue built in england? 🙂

          • Spinmeister

            ll in honour of a paedophile. Amazing really. A man who cuckolded his own son. A warlord.

          • anne_jay

            what’s worse, some anti-semite joke posts online, or real nonces going unpunished in, er, the catholic church?

  • HedgehogFive

    Bertrand Russell, on purely intellectual grounds, gave two succinct reasons for opposing the philosophy of Karl Marx: “one, that he was muddle-headed; and the other, that his thinking was almost entirely inspired by hatred.”

    Quoting from today’s Telegraph Letters:

    Left-wingers . . . have a harder time denying Marx himself, who said in 1856: “We find every tyrant backed by a Jew, as is every Pope by a Jesuit. In truth, the cravings of oppressors would be hopeless, and the practicability of war out of the question, if there were not an army of Jesuits to smother thought and a handful of Jews to ransack pockets.”

    • Anton

      Marx also wrote these words:

      It’s possible that I shall make an ass of myself. But in that case one can always get out of it with a little dialectic. I have, of course, so worded my proposition as to be right either way.

      (Regarding some previous comments of his about the Indian Mutiny, these words are in a letter to Engels reprinted on p. 152 of vol. 40 of Marx’s Collected Works, published by Lawrence and Wishart.)

      What price dialetical materialism now?

  • Whitestones

    Just another example of entryism. The infiltration of institutions is a recognised tactic of the Left. Join up and destroy from the inside, in the same way as does a parasite.

  • Drax Cog

    Those sneaky Tories, being racist by pointing out anti-semitism.

  • anne_jay

    http://www.jewishsocialist.org.uk/news/item/statement-on-labours-problem-with-antisemitism-from-the-jewish-socialists-g

    serious question, do respectable and integrated jews in britain enjoy people like paul staines campaigning for them?

    • Pubcrawler

      Dunno. Have you tried asking on a Jewish blog?

      • Careful now, or you’ll be called a “dumb goy”.

        • Pubcrawler

          Witness how my knees tremble at the thought…

    • Thats_news

      It wasn’t a serious question. So we can ignore the rest of your point. Unless you meant to be critical of Mr Staines because he is Irish? Or because his wife is Indian?

  • IrishNeanderthal

    The bitterness in Findaráto’s comments may be designed to drive people away from this blog, but whether it does or not, it will have the effect of poisoning people’s minds a priori against gay people they happen to meet.

    For myself, a musical antidote is called for. How about this one? It’s a Welsh song, but with running English translations, and I often turn to it when I need energizing or want a good laugh.

  • As a Christian can Rundell explain why he supports a political system that killed millions of people? Stalin was not known for holding back in having political opponents exterminated. Kim Jong-Il is well known for having hundred of thousands of countrymen incarcerated and killed. Venezuela is such a basket case that many people in that country are living below the poverty line. Well done Socialism – you bring out the worst in people.

  • bluedog

    So, what’s news? Pissant priest in the West Country of gauchiste sympathies rages against the power of the Right, and seeks to discredit same in the absence of any other means of breaking Conservative domination. Nothing to see here.

    • Anton

      Don’t be vitriolic…

      • bluedog

        Umm, not vitriolic, of course, but deeply confused. Ordained member of the Established Church who also seeks the implicit accreditation and authority of the Catholic Church (by use of the term Anglo-Catholic) declares that the democratically elected government is evil. In the light of this challenge to the power of the State, what institutions would Fr Simon seek to introduce to replace those he clearly despises and seeks to discredit through his use of language? Where does this campaign leave his own Established Church? I think we should be told.

        • Anton

          Sorry, I was borrowing the deliberate over-use of “vitriolic” from His Grace’s article.

          • bluedog

            Understood

  • Anton Deque

    He is a acting like a twerp. I am an Anglo Catholic with Jews as in-laws. I feel that Fr. Simon needs to do some growing up and concentrate on something much more serious coming his way: Reform and Renewal.

  • Dodgy Geezer

    My understanding is that Fr Simon Rundell believes in the torture and burning of Catholics, and I’m prepared to cite a number of directions from the Protestant Church of England dating back to the 1530s to back me up….

    • The Elderking

      Nice one!

    • Anton

      All of which were superseded by the CoE’s 39 Articles, which make no mention of such repugnant practice but do, thankfully, declare that the Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this realm of England.

    • pobjoy

      Your understanding is probably that no English Catholic was executed for religious reasons, but for capital crimes. Your understanding is probably that Mr Rundell would have been tried and found guilty of such crime.

      What a pre-emptive nick, eh.

  • William Lewis

    A key doctrine of the left of that they are morally superior to the right. When they are shown to be worse, and on a core attribute such as racism, then a right wing conspiracy becomes the only possible explanation.

    • anne_jay

      where are the left wing violent attacks on jews in this country?

      last guy to go down for plotting attacks against jews and gays was a far-right nutter with swastikas on his wall, it’s a fact: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Copeland

      After his arrest, Copeland wrote to BBC correspondent Graeme McLagan, denying that he had schizophrenia, and telling McLagan that the “Zog,” or Zionist Occupation Government, was pumping him full of drugs in order to sweep him under the carpet. He wrote, “I bomb the blacks, Pakis, degenerates. I would have bombed the Jews as well if I’d got a chance.”

      • William Lewis

        The far right is the far left. Indeed the Nazis were national socialists. But why are you only concerned with racism where violence is involved, and perpetrated by the mentally deranged?

        Anyway we’re not talking extremists here. We’re talking about common or garden Labour MPs, councillors and student activists. Oh yes, and holier-than-thou anglican priests.

        • anne_jay

          surely the basic tenent of christianity, is compassion for the oppressed?
          how on earth are jews in england oppressed in any way today?
          i was in central derby recently, and i saw white yobs throwing stuff at women in burkas
          ever actually read the sermon on the mount, buddy?

          • William Lewis

            What’s with the attitude and the unrelated questions, Anne?

          • anne_jay

            i don’t think it is unrelated
            in this world, their are bullies and victims
            “the enemy i see, wears a cloak of decency” from the jewish bob dylan there

          • William Lewis

            The neighborhood bully just lives to survive
            He’s criticized and condemned for being alive
            He’s not supposed to fight back, he’s supposed to have thick skin
            He’s supposed to lay down and die when his door is kicked in
            He’s the neighborhood bully

            From the Christian Bob Dylan there

  • Anton

    Newsflash: According to the front page of today’s Times,

    1. Tony Blair is to campaign for Britain to stay in the EU. Good news for Brexit in view of his popularity.

    2. David Cameron is to put measures against Islamic extremism at the centre of the Queen ‘s speech on May 18th. Will he get specific about Islam, or will this simply be more – and worse – measures that curb peaceable debate by law-abiding Christians about what the law should be in regard to such matters as gay marriage?

    • CliveM

      I think we know the answer to 2. But let’s be honest, if a law targeted a specific religion it would fail in the Courts.

      • Anton

        Apparently there is going to be a serious review of the Sharia court system. The Jewish Beth Din courts will presumably have to come under the same review but I must say that is not unreasonable.

        I hope that those making the review read Machteld Zee’s recent book Choosing Sharia. She managed to sit in on various cases in these courts and the book is essentially her doctoral thesis. It is telling.

        • CliveM

          What I would be interested to know is whether the review will be allowed to say Beth Din Courts good, Sharia Courts bad. I suspect not.

          • Anton

            Although I doubt that the Beth Din courts are pernicious, I do think that the same principle should apply uniformly: one country, one legal system.

          • CliveM

            Well I probably agree. Bet that isn’t the recommendation however. At most there will be a call for stricter oversight.

      • pobjoy

        There is no need to cite religious motive. If a person condones crime, particularly violent crime, every Muslim and Catholic in the world can be tried and must be found guilty, in every democratic country.

      • Anton

        Islam should be treated as a political movement. We understand better how to deal with those.

        • CliveM

          Again I think any law that specifically targeted Islam would fail in Court, even if it was defined as political. Inevitably any law would apply to any religion.

          • Anton

            Time for better definitions, certainly. It might even lead to disestablishment, which I would like to see but which would be in bad taste to discuss on his blog.

          • CliveM

            Thing is, there is a part of me that wonders at the purpose of this. There are already strict laws targeting hate speech, they just don’t ever seem to be applied to a certain religion.
            Time and again Imans or Mosques propogate ideas and views that are repugnant and endorse violence, but no action is taken.

            So why should any changes in the law that come out of this review be any better applied?

          • Anton

            Indeed. A question that our MPs should be asking.

          • bluedog

            The inhibition is almost certainly fear of violent reprisal, the same fear that means that benefits are never cut or properly administered.

          • Anton

            Application of the law is down to the police.

          • bluedog

            But the police don’t want trouble. Neither do the politicians who turn a blind eye to child marriage, polygamy through the practice of ‘single mums’ on benefits with a common partner, and FGM. One could go on. If the law were to be properly enforced there would be a civil war. Appeasement is sooo much better.

          • Anton

            I agree; I just don’t think that fear is at the bottom of it. It is a component, for sure, but together with folly, self-interest and other charmers.

          • Pubcrawler

            That weaselly ‘community cohesion’.

          • Anton

            Yes, and isn’t it working out so well?

  • jockcoleman
  • FredNerx

    The Wikipedia link above includes this: “The Tory-led and fully white British council decided to buy vacant houses to prevent “coloureds” from buying the houses, claiming the area had been “completely taken over by immigrants”.[7]” and, ironically perhaps, the reference [7] links to this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZcSi3Yd6wI#t=31 the voice over of which states clearly that the intent by the conservative council of buying the houses was to prevent the street from becoming an immigrant ghetto, in other words to foster a mix of people and multiculturalism. I thought this was A Good Thing according to the Left. Perhaps what they really objected to was that the conservatives hoped a racial mix might raise the standards of the newcomers. The voice over also points out that not only did the indigenous residents not mix with their Sikh neighbours, the Sikhs didn’t mix with the Jamaicans. The reality of multiculturalism in action.

  • Darter Noster

    How did Jewish people manage to go from being the bete noire of the right to the bete noire of the left so easily? (By left, I don’t include Stalin; he was a nationalist and a fascist by anyone’s definition).

    Leftism requires a victim narrative; Group of people a have been oppressed by group of people b, which therefore explains all the problems faced by a. Smash the privilege of b and everything will be alright for a. Leftism requires victim a to be passive and helpless in the face of oppressor b – literally everything is b’s fault and literally no problem faced by a cannot be explained by the actions of b. This is key to the sense of utter helplessness needed for leftism to flourish; everything is always someone else’s fault – white people, rich people, straight people, religious people (except Muslims).

    If there is any nation and people which utterly refutes the victim narrative of the left in the last 70 years it is the Israelis. They have turned a small, largely desert, middle eastern patch, with no oil, into a country which has achieved standards of living, freedoms, economic growth, security, health care, education etc. that the surrounding Arab countries with their (generally) ideologically leftist and statist regimes and strongmen can only dream of. Now that these regimes are falling to Islamism, there is only one explanation open to the leftists – Israel is a western capitalist colony that has only survived by oppressing the Arabs with Western help, and Islamism is a cry against this because anyone who hates the West that much can’t be all bad.

    The fact is that lefties cannot stand success, especially success achieved by hard work against the odds, because it disproves everything they hold dear. No country on earth stands as a greater two-fingers to leftist ideology than Israel, despite it doing many things that leftists are supposed to agree with, like gay rights. Thus Galloway, Livingstone et al. would rather express solidarity and brotherhood with people who throw gays off roofs against Israel, because in their warped world view Israel cannot exist so successfully without western oppression and colonialism.

    When the Jewish people were hapless victims the left was on their side; when they took their destiny into their own hands and succeeded they stopped being Lettie clients and became the enemy. They must be part of conspiracies, colonialism and oppression because lefties believe that any success in this world derives from those things. When Jews succeeded, like anyone else who becomes successful, they betrayed the left.

    • Uncle Brian

      Spot on, Darter. As a footnote, I’d just like to point out that the Arab Israelis, who make up 14 percent* of the population, are the only people in the entire Arab world, all the way from Morocco to Iraq, who have the privilege of living in a fully democratic state.

      *The 14 percent figure comes from this interesting post on Sandro Magister’s blog about religion and politics in Israel.

      http://chiesa.espresso.repubblica.it/articolo/1351285?eng=y

    • johnb1945

      True, although they were never really the bete noire of the conservative right – the fascistic right you refer to is, in many respects, left wing.

      In the conservative right Jews have historically been viewed with something amounting to snobbery. I offer no explanation as to why this might be, other than it was a form of xenophobia, but it is substantively different from the ideological hatred of Jews emanating from the fascistic right.