Homosexuality Church of England
Church of England

The Church of England should not tear itself apart over homosexuality and same-sex marriage

The General Synod of the Church of England is due to ‘take note’ (or not) of the Bishops’ report ‘Marriage and Same Sex Relationships after the Shared Conversations.’ In the pink corner are the LGBT ‘progressives’, sundry retired bishops and the Rt Rev’d Dr Alan Wilson, Bishop of Buckingham. And in the pink corner are the orthodox ‘conservatives’, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and (for the moment) all serving bishops except the Rt Rev’d Dr Alan Wilson, Bishop of Buckingham. The fact that both corners are pink is simply because they are largely indistinguishable in their expressions of support for stable and faithful lesbian-gay-bi relationships; their repudiation of sickening homophobic attitudes and language; and their unified quest for mutual respect, equality, justice and dignity for all LGBT people. See how these Christians love one another.

And yet they are divided: some dwell in Neverland; others in Sodom. Funny how we never hear much from the vast tribes drifting in the wilderness. Accusations are hurled of betrayal, hypocrisy, inconsistency, lying and deception, not to mention bigotry and homophobia. And then there’s the ignorance of tradition, authority, science and nature. There is mutual suspicion, even contempt and loathing. Express a view which the other side doesn’t like, and you’re cast into outer darkness. ‘Hate’ is the favoured invective of the haters. And whatever you do, don’t use scare quotes (such as “gay marriage” or “Christian”), or a form of words the others consider offensive (such as “inclined to same-sex attraction” or “maximum freedom”), or you really will be damned (or at least never read or listened to again).

The battle in the political realm is really a consequence of that in the spiritual. Both sides sometimes lose sight of that, even as they accuse one another of dancing with demons, if not of outright possession. One person’s pink is another’s black or blue, and the sins of exclusion and oppression are as grave as the spectrum of sins of sexual immorality. “Change and repent,” says one ex-bishop. “You have really not allowed the theological voice of some (LGBT/supporters) to be heard properly,” counter a whole psalter of retired bishops.

One side goes on about tradition, catholicity and the authority of Scripture; the other about authentic voices, bold leadership and LGBT pain.

And in the world of flesh and war and suspicion and betrayal, never the twain shall meet.

“We’re two different sorts of religion,” says the Rt Rev’d Dr Michael Nazir-Ali. “One has a view of God and the Church and Christianity that is completely different from the other.”

“We need each other,” writes the Rt Rev’d Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester. “I have much to learn in my own pastoral response to LGBTI people and I can only learn it by listening.”

And please don’t think that this is an exclusively Anglican schism: there are LGBT Catholics who are currently perched between two popes: Pope (Emeritus) Benedict XVI, for whom the practice of homosexuality is “an intrinsic moral evil”; the inclination “an objective disorder”. And Pope Francis, for whom the inclination is “not a problem”; and the practice is… well, who is he to judge?

When it comes to Christianity, there are deeper loyalties. Or a deeper loyalty. There is more that unites than divides. Or ought to be.

And homosexuality is not an issue worthy of schism: it is simply not of the order of the sort of debate that used to divide the Church: the divinity of Christ, for example, or the nature of his humanity – the great controversy at the Council of Nicæa in AD325 – or even over liturgy or the transforming nature of infant baptism. The issue of homosexuality affects only a tiny minority of Christians: it is of distinctly secondary, even peripheral, scriptural importance.

The role of the Bible in addressing the modern question of the place of LGBT people in the Church is complex, not least because where homosexuality is mentioned in Scripture (remembering the word was only coined in 1892), the authors give little sustained consideration of the issue as it manifests in contemporary society. The nature of a biblical perspective will invariably be affected by the questions posed of the Bible, by the particular hermeneutic employed, and by the unavoidable perspective which each scholar brings to his or her reading of the Bible. While some may have an instant negative reaction, others seek to understand the debate in the different and changing circumstances in which we now live. Still others, who may identify themselves as lesbian, gay or bisexual Christians, struggle to express either their feelings or their thoughts on the issue. They are themselves divided into those who acknowledge that homosexuality is a sin and therefore a call to celibacy, and those who assert that they also are made in God’s image and therefore seek to express their sexual desires in an intimate, monogamous relationship.

That God established an objective, moral order in creation, and continues a work of re-creation through Jesus, is a source and standard of all that it beautiful, good and true. If such a moral order means anything, there may be no via media on the issue of homosexuality. Accepting theological diversity is not the same as tolerating all beliefs and practices, because ultimately the Church is called to be holy because God is holy (Lev 19:2; Mt 5:48). We cannot, as Christians, just give way to a ‘you believe this, I believe that’ approach to being together, or moving apart, in the Church. Nor even can we be content with the rather cheap model of ‘reconciled diversity’, meaning benign tolerance, which many Christians find an easier option to the costlier pursuit of real, visible unity. We need to continue to struggle together for the truth, to find the right and godly balance between the call to solidarity and the recognition of difference. Presently, nowhere is this more important – especially in the Anglican Communion – than in the area of homosexuality.

Hence yet another rancorous General Synod division on the issue.

But the whole issue really is a non-issue because the wrong question is being asked. The modern era is sex-obsessed: we live in a consumer society, and there is little that is marketed without a glance, a wink, a flirt, a breast, or allusions to sexual intercourse, because ‘sex sells’. If one were to judge by the media (which is more frequently a mirror to society than a catalyst for change), the fascination with people’s sex lives is now more important than politics, religion, philosophy or even Mammon.

Jesus may have had to address the latter as the dominating idol of his era, and his judgment was unequivocal and succinct: render unto Caesar that which belongs to Caesar (Mt 22:21); and one may not serve both God and Mammon (6:24). He did not enter into discussion on the economic and fiscal minutiae of cash, credit, bonds, shares, loans or interest: a macro-warning to acknowledge sovereignty and not to be obsessed with Mammon was sufficient. If one were to apply the same principle to the modern idol – ‘Eros’ – it is doubtful that Jesus would address its sub-divisions (lesbian, gay, bi, straight, oral, anal, tantric); he would most likely directly challenge society’s obsessive fixation with Eros, and by so doing confront both those who prioritise issues of sexuality and those in the Church who presume to judge them.

By devoting so much time and effort to homosexuality and same-sex marriage, instead of challenging society by deconstructing the question or focusing on issues of poverty and wealth (for example), the Church of England is simply showing itself to share the same obsessions as the world. St Paul allowed no compromise on the restriction of sexual activity to heterosexual, monogamous marriage. But such an ethic seems almost utopian to our sex-besotted age, in which it appears at times that one’s identity is made to reside in one’s sexual organs and their untrammeled exercise.

The issue for the Church of England (which it has yet to discover) is that this debate has been blown out of all proportion: it is neither a battle for the soul of the church, nor an issue worthy of schism. It is a question utterly peculiar to the age, and those on both sides of the divide might consider toning down the rhetoric and restraining apologetics or the writing of (un)helpful open letters, and instead preach a message that, contrary to society’s thinking, sexual expression is neither a necessary line of inquiry in every human interaction, nor an essential component in human fulfilment.

  • Bob Frost

    ‘Homosexual practices split Bishops’?

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Naughty!

    • Inspector General

      It is indeed a risky procedure they say. Fistula and prolapse are the end result in many cases of repeated abuse. Enthusiastic practitioners will tell you that ‘love conquers all’. Not this business, it doesn’t…

  • Pope Francis has many faults, but he is no fan of same-sex “marriage”.
    https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/pope-francis-condemns-abortion-euthanasia-same-sex-marriage-in-exhortation

  • “The Church of England should not tear itself apart over homosexuality and same-sex marriage.”

    With respect, Happy Jack thinks it should.

    There is no room for compromise on this for any Christian church. For over twenty years this issue has plagued the Church of England and the search for a via media has given nourishment to the alternative ‘social justice’ gospel. Abortion, divorce and remarriage, women priests and bishops. What next?

    Nothing less than clear and unequivocal opposition to active same sex relationships and “marriage” will do.

    • Jon Sorensen

      “There is no room for compromise on this for any Christian church” and I can see bunch of new denominations popping up. Divide and conquer….

    • 1642+5thMonarchy

      For once I agree with you Jack.

  • Jon Sorensen

    We all need to support LGBTs religious right to marry.

    Funny how CoE does not go after people who marry 2nd time or unmarried living together like they go after LGBT. Minorities are easier target to discriminate against I guess.

    • Royinsouthwest

      Those who marry a second time are aware that the ideal is that marriage should be lifelong and monogamous. Similarly those who are living together without being married are also aware that Christian teaching is that they ought to get married if they are committed to each other and if they are not committed then they should not be living with each other.

      Neither those who divorce and marry someone else nor those who are living together without being married are trying to change Christian teaching. The LGBT crowd are.

      • Jon Sorensen

        It’s not about “Those who marry a second time are aware”. It about Christians giving religious right to marry to everyone.

        You should support LGBT religious right to change any theology they want. Support their religious freedom.

        • Martin

          Jon

          No one has the right to change what God has said. Would you give anyone the right to rewrite what you have written? You really are so silly.

          • Jon Sorensen

            My God said that gays can marry and “No one has the right to change what God has said.” Respect my LGBT right to marry.

          • Martin

            Jon

            Your god brought sin, sorrow and death upon this world. We can happily ignore him

          • Jon Sorensen

            But She is the only true living God

          • Martin

            Jon

            So it tells you.

    • Little Black Censored

      “We all need to support LGBTs religious right to marry.”
      How do you what we all need? I don’t need to any such thing.

      • Jon Sorensen

        It’s not about you. It’s about religious right to marry for everyone. If you don’t need it then don’t use it.

    • Martin

      Jon

      There is no right to marry

      • Jon Sorensen

        You are right. Christians took that right away

        • Martin

          Jon

          No one ever took it away, it simply isn’t a right.

          • Jon Sorensen

            Study your Christian history. What happened to marriage when Christians took over that institution. Your ignorance is showing.

          • Martin

            Jon

            No, your ignorance is showing. True marriage has remained the same since the Creation.

          • Jon Sorensen

            There was no creation. Like I said.. study the history

          • Martin

            Jon

            Stupidity added to ignorance.

  • ‘Homosexuality is not an issue worthy of schism… it is of distinctly secondary, even peripheral, scriptural importance.’

    No, this is a first order issue, because it relates to the way that God has designed creation, and how it reflects Christ’s relationship with the Church. It also has massive implications for the authority of scripture and how we use it. If we cannot see God’s design and purpose in the division of humankind into male and female, with complementary anatomy and mutual desire, then we cannot see it anywhere. Relativism and, ultimately, nihilism lie on the other side of that line, and it is of the utmost importance that we do not cross it.

    Also, to be fair to the bishops they do spend far more of their energy on mission and social action and issues of wealth and poverty than on speaking about sexuality – it’s just this is what the media run with, because it’s what people are interested in. If you look at what bishops say and do from day-to-day it’s almost always on social matters; very very rarely is it about sex. Even in an age obsessed with it.

    • Little Black Censored

      Just as Blair treated this country and constitution as his own property, the bishops are behaving not as stewards and guardians of the church and its doctrine who will pass on their responsibilities to their successors but as proprietors without any such duty.

  • carl jacobs

    It is never quite explained how these two sides are supposed to co-exist. After all, the necessary implication of coexistence is that the CoE must change at least its functional doctrine. The church must stand itself on its head and say “Homosexual behavior is now formally recognized as good by the church but some people reject this.” But the rejection will have no functional expression. It will simply be an opinion that is denied by the praxis of the church. Until of course the revisionists get strong enough to “expel the bigotry.” As has happened everywhere else a church has compromised on this issue.

    There is no possibility of compromise. A house divided cannot stand. It must become either all one or all the other. It can cower before the world or oppose it. But there is no way to do both.

    • Anton

      Preach it, Carl !

    • Coniston

      “Benedict XVI, for whom the practice of homosexuality is “an intrinsic moral evil”; the inclination “an objective disorder”. And Pope Francis, for whom the inclination is “not a problem”; and the practice is… well, who is he to judge?” Surely for Christians the vital distinction is between inclination and practice.

      • You’re misrepresenting Pope Francis.

        Pope Francis actually said: “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge him? The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains this very well. It says they should not be marginalised because of this (orientation) but that they must be integrated into society. The problem is not having this orientation. We must be brothers. The problem is lobbying by this orientation.”

        As usual with Pope Francis, the problem lay with what he didn’t say i.e. acting on same sex attraction is always against God’s law and can never be acceptable for a professed Christian. Although he referenced the Catechism, where these teachings are clearly stated, he omitted this and the liberal media went into a frenzy.

        • Coniston

          a) I was quoting Archbishop Cranmer.
          b) My last sentence accords with your penultimate sentence.

  • carl jacobs

    This fight has never been about sex. It has always been about the authority to set moral boundaries. Autonomous man demands it while the Scripture forbids it. Which authority stands paramount? That’s why this is a first order issue.

    The unity of the Church of England be damned. This is a hill worth dying on.

    • ChaucerChronicle

      It appears you do want to live life to the full: you’ve found a cause worth ‘dying’ for.

      • Anton

        He found that when he came to Christ, who died for us. Let us be willing to reciprocate.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          I presume then, you’ve read or heard his testimony?

          • Anton

            It is my default presumption of all Christians.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Including ‘LGBT’ Christians?

          • Anton

            When somebody says he or she is a Christian then I presume they are willing to die for Christ until I discover otherwise.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Good. Then in that class ‘somebody’ you will be including ‘LGBT’ Christians. Is that not so?

          • Anton

            As I said, when somebody says he or she is a Christian then I presume they are willing to die for Christ until I discover otherwise – regardless of whether they also say they are gay. There are issues as to whether ‘gay’ and ‘Christian’ are mutually consistent so I have answered your question using the language of self-identification.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            At the moment you’re ‘busy’ projecting this test of ‘dying’ onto others. May I take it that you are willing to die for Him?

          • Anton

            I intend to be.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            So the test is not ‘willing to die’ but one of intention.

            Bearing in mind your previous posts, is that correct?

            Jacobs, aren’t you considering riding, like the 7th Cavalry, to the rescue? He’s supported and (or) defended you.

            You promised.

          • Anton

            So you think you’ve ‘got me’?

            Nobody knows if they actually are willing to die for a cause until they get the option.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            If you were presented with the option; which would you select?

          • Anton

            I don’t understand the question. What are the options, please?

          • ChaucerChronicle

            ‘Nobody knows if they actually are willing to die for a cause until they get the option.’

            ‘the option’: you used the definite article.

            You know. We know.

          • Anton

            Nobody knows if they actually are willing to die for a cause until they get the option to do so.

            Clearer now?

          • ChaucerChronicle

            No.

            ‘Nobody knows if they actually are willing to die for a cause until they get the option.’

            ‘the option’: you used the definite article.

            It is unlike a Christian to exercise evasion. Is that not so?

          • Anton

            I haven’t the faintest idea what you are asking of me. If you are sincere, you will ask it as a stand-alone question in your reply. I shall answer it in good faith.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            By your evasion (in public), you have already demonstrated.

          • bluedog

            Nurse!

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Well, I did steer clear of you. Since, you elect to interfere in a quarell I shall wait – for your luminous posts.

          • bluedog

            Be ready for a long and disappointing wait.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            The temptation for you to post is more than your ego to bear.

          • bluedog

            Mirror, mirror, on the wall….

          • ChaucerChronicle

            The analysis, below, was correct.

          • Do calm down, CC. Jack says this in friendship.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            I only have one left to address: bluedog.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            I am about to address bluedog within the next three minutes.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            I, pardon you.

          • bluedog

            Well, I’m not aware that I have done anything wrong but thank you for the gesture of reconciliation.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Then you should remain consistent and reject it.

          • Anton

            How am I evading when I have asked you to repeat the question in a standalone reply?

            By not doing so, is it not you who are evading?

          • ChaucerChronicle

            ‘You did not repeat the question when I first asked you to, so who is really evading?’

            Repetition.

          • Anton

            Absurd. Let the reader decide for himself.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Bald assertion; without evidential support.

          • He’s taking you down a rabbit hole, Anton. We all hope, by the grace of God, to sacrifice our lives for Christ. However, do we have the courage to do so and make the ultimate sacrifice? All we can do is pray it will be so and that God will strengthen us should such a test arise. Even Jesus needed courage and comforting by angels.

          • bluedog

            Well said. The sort of cyber-harrassment we witness from CC is scarcely consistent with the teaching or practice of Christ himself.

          • He’s harmless; just a touch excitable.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Mirror, mirror on the wall…

          • carl jacobs

            Anton needs no help from me.

            I called you out for bad behavior because you behaved badly. Calm down, grow up, and take responsibility for your actions.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Ad hominem.

          • Little Black Censored

            Why don’t you mind your own business? ” Lord, and what shall this man do?” “What is that to thee… follow thou me.”

          • ChaucerChronicle

            I have no quarell with you.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Sir

            Your gentle rebuke is all the more penetrating.

            I sincerely and unreservedly apologise for dismissing it; I can assure you that it whispered a ‘gentle breeze’ in my ears all night.

    • ChaucerChronicle

      ‘The unity of the Church of England be damned.’

      You must be in secure possession of your soul to issue such a curse.

    • ChaucerChronicle

      The authority of Scripture has never been enough. Lucifer himself quotes such.

      Anthing in support you wish to add and (or) qualify?

      • The authority of Scripture has always been enough.
        However, it is not fond in ‘It is written’ but in ‘It is written again.’ (Matthew 4:6-7). Any fool can quote a verse out of context (and they often do so). Scripture is its own interpreter.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          I thought, in addition to Scripture, being born again and empowered by the Holy Spirit was superior.

          • Article VI of the C of E.
            Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation……’

            It is true that unless one is born again he can neither see nor enter the kingdom of God, but that is man’s fault due to his sinful nature, not that of Scripture

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Very, good; Mr Marprelate.

    • Albert

      The interesting thing here is that the CofE broke from Catholicism on the grounds of what is necessary for salvation. Now since scripture is pretty forceful about what happens to people who engage in homosexual acts, I would have thought this was a matter of salvation.

      • Ah, but a real Christian wouldn’t succumb to the temptation. Or. alternatively, the sin will be covered by Christ if they believe in Him. Anything else is “works based” and semi-Pelagian. At least this is what the Bishop of Buckingham informed Happy Jack a few years back.

        • Albert

          So the Bishop of Buckingham is in favour of homosexual acts because he believes in sola fide?

          • It would appear so – mixed in with all the other “alones”. Plus, he doesn’t believe the bible actually condemns monogamous, life long same sex relationships and favours homosexuals being “married” and being fully accepted.
            This revisionism is also taking place in the Catholic Church. At present it is masked in the controversies surrounding reception of the sacraments by those in objectively sinful relationships – the divorced and remarried – with no intention of changing or regularising this. However, the principles of personal conscious, God not expecting us to live according to His laws, and even approving of sin as the best we can do in particular situations, could just as easily be applied to same sex relationships.
            Scary stuff.

          • Albert

            Did you see the excellent blog post of Fr Hunwicke:

            There is much talk about Discernment, Accompaniment, Gradualism, and Conscience, as applied to those in objectively adulterous relationships.

            BIG QUESTION: Does all this stuff apply only to adulterers, or does it also apply to all sinners, including embezzlers, paedophiles, murderers, wife-beaters, human traffickers, torturers, rapists, economic exploiters of the poor, blackmailers, racists, exploiters of prostitutes, perpetrators of genocide, drug traffickers, etc. etc.

            If not, why not?

      • Arden Forester

        CofE broke with Rome not necessarily Catholicism. It was never Henry VIII’s intention to discard the Catholic Faith for the continental protestantism. It was his son Edward VI who clung like a limpet to protestant thought. And eventually it was King William of Orange who established the political protestantism we have today. That which merges seamlessly it would appear with modern secular notions.

        The Church of England has only a tenuous unity. In fact, it now lives with impaired communion due to female ordination.

        Scripture, Tradition and Reason do not sit well with any new version of Holy Matrimony, whether nuanced or changed beyond recognition.

        • Albert

          CofE broke with Rome not necessarily Catholicism. It was never Henry VIII’s intention to discard the Catholic Faith for the continental protestantism.

          That’s true, but firstly, I think it is incoherent, especially under the circumstances. This was not temporary boycott of Rome, but a setting up of a distinct body. The body was based on the Protestant principle that the King could be Head of the Church, and included not merely the removal of opposing bishops, but even, in Fisher’s case, his execution. Thus this was a separation from Catholicism.

          Moreover, I was thinking more widely of the Anglican theological settlement. What kept the CofE from restoration with Catholicism, or on what theological grounds did it remain distinct? On their own account it would have been matters of salvation. I would say that point has been carried on. Anglicans might be quite happy with many elements of Catholicism, but it was the idea that these things were required that was the problem. From the 39 Articles:

          6. The sufficiency of Holy Scripture for salvation
          Holy Scripture contains all things necessary for salvation. Consequently whatever is not read in Scripture nor can be proved from Scripture cannot be demanded from any person to believe it as an article of the faith. Nor is any such thing to be thought necessary or required for salvation.

          An Article like this may well explain Cranmer’s position. Is traditional teaching on homosexuality an article of faith? Not directly at best. Might failure to teach rightly on homosexuality imperil someone’s salvation? Therein lies the rub, and why the Article’s razor may shave too close.

          Beyond that nuance, I think everything you say is correct.

          • Arden Forester

            Your points are coherent and I’m sorry I was incoherent if in part. Anglicans, however it is looked at, do not believe the same things today. For instance, I as an Anglican Papalist have little in common with an Anglican Calvinist in belief. What connects us, as with all Trinitarian Christians, is Holy Baptism as this sacrament can be performed in extremis by a lay person.

            All Christians are called to work for and maintain unity. It is difficult but a messy unity is better, I think, than no unity.

            This might be of interest – file:///C:/Users/owner/Downloads/ANGLICAN_PAPALISM_Brooke_Lunn_2011%20(5).pdf

          • Albert

            Thank you Arden. I don’t think I intended to say your post was incoherent, only that claims by Anglicans to be Catholic are incoherent. I’m afraid I see top of my list of incoherent positions Anglican Papalism. Why don’t you just come and join us? I made the same move and have never wanted to reverse the decision.

          • None of the above

            It might well be of interest if it were available for us to read. However, the address you’ve given is of a local file, i.e. something which exists on your own computer but is not accessible to anybody else.

  • Anton

    The problem is not sin. We all do that. It is about unrepentance.

  • 1642+5thMonarchy

    1. Yes, there are bigger things for Christian churches to focus their energies upon, such as Islamicisation, the pursuit of hedonism and Mammon, the decline of the faith in the West, the creeping totalitarianism of the modern State… His Grace is correct in this regard.

    2. No, this battle must be fought and won whatever the cost because the LGBT lobby are aiming to cut the church’s doctrines off from their explicit and unambiguous Scriptural roots. There are varying Scriptural grounds for ambiguity in teaching on divorce and remarriage, even female clergy (less so in my opinion) but none at all in any celebration of ghey matters in church. His Grace is in error in this respect.

    If this battle is lost heresy will be let rampant within the CoE and the arms of the State will then be used to impose similar disorder on other denominations.

    • Anton

      I informed my elders a couple of years ago that if and when the authorities require a list of names of church members then they are not to give mine, and that if they intend to accede to the request then I shall resign, and join or if necessary start an illegal unregistered fellowship. I think the possibility of mandatory registration had not occurred to them, and for the avoidance of misunderstanding the conversation was entirely cordial.

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        Won’t make any difference Anton. They already know your views as they are recording them on here. A quick key word search and up we all pop.

        • Anton

          Well, here I stand; I can do no other.

    • “There are varying Scriptural grounds for ambiguity in teaching on divorce and remarriage, even female clergy (less so in my opinion) but none at all in any celebration of ghey matters in church.”

      Jack agrees scripture alone, separated from Church tradition and human reason, is insufficient for resolving the divisions over these issues. There are those who believe homosexuality is not forbidden by scripture and that monogamous life time “partnerships” are acceptable before God. Just as there are those who believe euthanasia is an act of “compassion”; and abortion the “lesser of two evils”.

      Without the anchor of our collective, authoritative Christian Deposit of Faith, preserved and promoted, in season and out, the Church will be tossed about on the waves of relativism and secularism.

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        I’m not in huge disagreement with you on that Jack and indeed one of the stronger arguments against female clergy I heard is that none of the major denominations, whether Catholic derived, Orthodox or others, countenance it, and the Scriptural evidence in favour was pretty much an argument from silence and not sufficient to overturn the wider interpretation.

        As for ghey marriage etc, even leaving aside Leviticus etc, Paul is explicitly adamant and the arguments in favour rest on a feeble interpretation that he meant something different. It’s absolutely clear to what he was referring and is no more credible than those who would say Christ at Cana changed the water into grape juice rather than wine because God doesn’t approve of alcohol.

        Sola Scriptura is quite sufficient in this case, and the arguments from the wider church’s historic wisdom are not needed to buttress it, but are of course helpful.

        • Well, Jack happens to agree but there are many who do not and who interpret scripture very differently. To end divisiveness, to stop the advance of liberalism, and to resolve issues definitively and then transmit the faith to future generations, scripture needs an authoritative teaching body. One that is not subject to the whims and fashions of culture. The Church also needs a rigorous way of removing those clerics who oppose Church doctrine.

          • Anton

            It is obvious what scripture says about this matter. No interpreter claiming equal authority is necessary (or, in fact, possible). Persons who take the liberal line are easily trashed in scripture-based debate; in general they simply ignore the scriptures.

          • That’s just a simplistic analysis. People don’t agree on how to “read” scripture and so the debate is often at cross purposes.

            As Jack has said before, the current worship of sex, as good in and of itself for pleasure, was given the green-light at Lambeth in 1930.

            The Church of England could soon have as its Supreme Governor a man living in an objectively adulterous relationship with a divorcee who’s husband is still living. A man who conducted an open, adulterous relationship with this woman whilst his wife was still living. This relationship was “blessed” by the Church of England.

            How can the Church of England condemn homosexual relationships whilst at the same time tolerating/approving contraception, abortion, divorce and remarriage and irregular unions? Practices its adherents claim will find justification in scripture.

          • Anton

            Better ask an Anglican. All I’m saying is that scripture is clear on the subject. As you don’t seem to think so, please show me how it is unclear about this.

          • Did Jack say he viewed scripture as unclear on this issue? No, he most certainly didn’t. However, by what authority do you claim to have the definitive answer? And how does this differ from others who disagree?

            Read any website or theologian presenting the alternate theological views and opinions about homosexuality. There are plenty of them about. Jack hasn’t the time to waste.

          • Anton

            I have. I took the trouble to debate a self-professed gay evangelical by email a decade ago. I learnt all of their tricks and they are easily overcome. If we agree that the scriptures are clear then that’s all I’m interested in here. We can discuss the Magisterium yet again some other time.

          • Little Black Censored

            I sense an argument about the magisterium coming on.
            Edit. Oh, I see it has; I ought to have read on.

          • Anton

            Not contraception *again*, Jack? Barrier contraception within marriage is not counter-scriptural. If the Magisterium wishes to play holier-than-thou with God then I am content to watch.

          • Artificial contraception is the root of the problem ….

          • Anton

            Assertion is not argument.

          • We’ve all covered the arguments.
            You have your understanding of scripture and Church authority and Jack has his – just like those who disagree over homosexuality.

          • Anton

            False analogy. Homosexual acts are condemned in scripture. Marital barrier contraception isn’t. If you disagree, don’t rattle on about differing interpretation and authority, just discuss it with me from the scriptures.

          • Jack already has and as he does not subscribe to scripture alone, such discussions prove to be pointless. Suffice it to say that all the prominent leaders of the Reformation regarded artificial contraception as sinful and condemned in the bible. Revisionism is as unacceptable in this matter as in homosexuality.

          • Anton

            Can’t play, won’t play.

          • CliveM

            You should ŕad the Bishop of Buckinham on the subject. He certainly believes his biblical understanding on this subject (and he does claim it to be scriptural) is better then the tradional one.

          • Anton

            I am willing; give me a reference or link, please.

          • CliveM

            He has s blog. He had a book published a couple of years back on the subject. For an understanding of his tone , see link.

            I can’t find the actual words I read (like himself, they were smug and self satisfied beyond belief), but the certainly made the comment that if everyone was as blblically literate as himself on the subject we would support Gay marriage.

            He didn’t give any evidence however. Probably hope we’d buy his book.

            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/11124906/One-in-10-Church-of-England-bishops-could-be-secretly-gay-says-bishop.html

          • Anton

            I’ll not buy his book. He is already in receipt of too much money from the faithful which he uses to peddle doubt. I’ll just add that I chose to debate a self-professed gay evangelical by email a decade ago – and found a couple of related websites.

            In summary, they say the New Testament is silent on the subject because it supposedly condemns sexual sin only in general terms; they question the meaning of arsenokoitai in 1 Cor 6:9 although it is clearly a conjunction from the Septuagint of Leviticus 20:13; they suggest that it is only one of penetrator and penetrated who sins in homosexual acts; they say that the prohibitions in Leviticus are only on homosexual acts *in the Temple* although these appear in a list of sexual prohibitions such as incest that have nothing to do with religious worship; they say the Levitical prohibitions are no more relevant than the one on wearing clothes of two materials; they say the Levitical prohibitions are only on heterosexuals seeking unorthodox variation in their sex lives, even though Leviticus specifically prohibits *acts*. (Rowan Williams defended the last of these arguments in a letter dated 28th September 2000 to a Dr Pitt which was later made public.) If you know more ‘gay evangelical’ arguments, please add them for discussion!

          • CliveM

            My point wasnt that they have a good interpretation, rather that, as HJ says, they would argue their understanding is scriptural.

            HJ draws conclusion from that about where authority should lie, which I wouldnt agree with, but his point that their is different understandings is true.

          • Conclusions based on scripture, Clive.

          • CliveM

            its one of those occassions were there are different interpretations HJ. I respect your understanding and the basis for it, I just dont agree with it.

            One day we will all see the truth and I suspect we will all be a little wrong (at least)!

          • There you go. Scripture doesn’t stand on itself alone. Our understandings deepen and it has to be understood, interpreted and applied in changing circumstances.

          • CliveM

            And all done through prayerful reading of scripture.

          • …. and submission and obedience to those appointed to represent Christ in His visible Church.

          • Little Black Censored

            Bingo! You’re like a doorstepping Mormon leading a dialogue to the official punchline.

          • The logic is unassailable, Little Black Thingy.

          • CliveM

            One day we’ll enjoy a good debate about that, but I think Gay marriage is enough to go on with.

          • Anton

            The point of public debate is not to change the mind of the other but to win the minds of the audience by showing up the arguments of the other. I am saying that in a debate in which both sides accept the Bible then this is not too difficult.

  • Anton

    To expel heretics is not to tear apart. It is the opposite, in fact.

    What say the scriptures – the same scriptures that tell us all we know about Jesus?

  • Sad to see this on this blog. Each side believes the other side is evil in some way. This cannot be reconciled however you cut it. Apologies for the self-promotion, I blogged about this a week or so ago:

    https://phillsacre.me.uk/2017/02/08/the-cofe-a-house-divided-against-itself/

    • scottspeig

      One cannot be apologetic about self promotion and self promote.

  • “When will people understand (even conservative pundits) that you can never win a battle by accepting the vocabulary of your enemy?

    The Libtards have created a new vocabulary to reprogram the brain of the simple. If we want to deprogram the brain of the simple, we must go back to the old vocabulary.

    It’s not “gays”, it’s “homosexuals” (which refers to the sexual perversion) or “sodomites” (which refers to the acting on the perversion). It’s not “LGBT”, it’s “perverts”. It’s not “homophobia”, it’s Christian feeling and Christian decency.

    This, if you write for an official publication, or if you are a priest …..

    It astonishes me how many people do not understand this simple concept: words shape thinking. We can’t escape this reality. We can avoid the issue, but it will came back to bite us when we are then forced to fight with one hand bound.

    Let’s stop talking the language of our enemies.

    Let’s start talking the language of our grandfathers instead.”

    https://mundabor.wordpress.com/2017/02/13/lets-stop-talking-the-language-of-our-enemies-2/

    • CliveM

      Are you sure that Inspector General and Mundobar aren’t one and the same?

      • Little Black Censored

        Gosh is Mundabor still going? He used to be the Ayatollah of one of the old Telegraph blogs.

        • Got booted off and set up his own website.

    • Coniston

      In ‘The Articles of War 1757, No. 28’ (taken from Patrick O’Brien), homosexuality as such was not a punishable offence (in any case the word was unknown then), and has never been punishable. What was punishable was the ‘unnatural and detestable sin of buggery and sodomy with man or beast [which] shall be punished with death by the sentence of a court martial…’ I am certainly not suggesting we go back to the cruelties of the past, but simply to point out that they used words more accurately then.

    • Sybaseguru

      So what about same sex attracted people who try to be celibate but fail. Are they any different from heterosexuals who try to be celibate but fail. Romans 7 is very clear, and Jesus uses the term “sexual immorality” – he doesn’t limit it to gays.

      • Anton

        Depends what their attitude to their failure is.

        • Little Black Censored

          And what practical form the failure takes.

          • Let’s be blunt. Homosexual practices are acts of sterile mutual masturbation.

          • Anton

            Without taking issue with your comment, is an act of marital sex with a condom while the woman is fertile in that category? Also, is an act of marital sex which is timed deliberately while the woman is known to be infertile? if your answers differ, why, please?

          • Read Humanae Vitae.

      • Heterosexual sin is of a different order to homosexual sin. The former is the gift of sexuality expressed illicitly outside of marriage; the latter is a sexual disorder that can never be expressed licitly without grave sin.
        That said, a person with the objective disorder of same sex attraction, who does all s/he can to resist moral evil but occasionally stumbles, is a sinner in need of God’s grace and forgiveness. As is anyone who commits sexual sin.

        • Little Black Censored

          As a matter of interest, nobody so far in this discussion, except by implication Coniston, has said anything about the inequality of the sexes in this matter. Buggery is the offensive practice of male homosexuals. Surely lesbianism is, so to speak, safer, both from condemnation and from disease.
          (Apparently lesbians and gays don’t like each other, according to Milo Yannopoulos passim.)

          • All sexual acts outside of marriage are against scripture – heterosexual or homosexual.

    • William Lewis

      That is counter-productive, unhelpful and unnecessary.

      • CliveM

        Mundobar thinks being as offensive as possible, equals strength of argument.

        I’m not so sure.

        • William Lewis

          Me neither.

        • Anton

          I’m sure. It doesn’t.

          • CliveM

            Between you and me Anton and don’t tell anyone, I’m sure to.

          • Anton

            I won’t tell anyone!

        • No he believes in mockery and disparaging the opponents of orthodox Christianity rather than being polite, seeking compromise and changing our language. What term does the bible use for sodomy?

          • Anton

            Good question – time to check the Hebrew and LXX OT and the Greek NT and explain how the words would have been construed to their audiences. Arsenokoitai which Paul made up as a concatenation from the LXX Leviticus 20:13, to mean a man who lies with a man (which is also the literal translation of the Hebrew in the Levitical prohibitions) is purely descriptive; a new word can have no cultural overtones.

          • 2 Peter 2: 6-10: “corrupt desire of the flesh” or “twisted sexual desire”.

            Jude 1:7: “unnatural desire”.

            Leviticus 18:22: “it is an abomination”.

            Romans 1:25-27: “vile passions”, “against nature”, “perversion” or “error”

            God’s language isn’t that of compromise or being nice.

          • Anton

            Those as well. I’m not in disagreement at all with you. God’s wisdom is on display in Leviticus in simply describing the acts in a piece of legislation. I thought you were referring rhetorically to the “sin of Sodom” phrase.

          • This language is not too far away from that used by Mundabor. Is scripture wrong to use such terms?

          • Anton

            It wasn’t me who criticised Mundabor for that. All I said to Clive is that the proposition, “being as offensive as possible, equals strength of argument” is false. Actually I haven’t read in full what you posted from Mundabor.

          • Offence is in the ear of the hearer.

          • Anton

            Joining with the politically correct people who make our legislation today? That’s their attitude to so-called hate speech.

          • Who cares? Jack believes we have a right to express views and opinions in a way that might offend others.

          • Anton

            So do I, of course.

          • CliveM

            There is a difference between how you refer to the act and how you refer to the person. Besides not all sexually active Gays are sodomites.

          • IanCad

            “Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind it is abomination.” Leviticus 18:22
            “Lie” is the operative word Jack.

          • Saint Paul broadened it:

            “That is why God abandoned their lustful hearts to filthy practices of dishonouring their own bodies among themselves.They had exchanged God’s truth for a lie, reverencing and worshipping the creature in preference to the Creator (blessed is he for ever, Amen); and, in return, God abandoned them to passions which brought dishonour to themselves.Their women exchanged natural for unnatural intercourse; and the men, on their side, giving up natural intercourse with women, were burnt up with desire for each other; men practising vileness with their fellow men. Thus they have received a fitting retribution for their false belief.

            And as they scorned to keep God in their view, so God has abandoned them to a frame of mind worthy of all scorn, that prompts them to disgraceful acts. They are versed in every kind of injustice, knavery, impurity, avarice, and ill-will; spiteful, murderous, contentious, deceitful, depraved, backbiters, slanderers, God’s enemies; insolent, haughty, vainglorious; inventive in wickedness, disobedient to their parents; without prudence, without honour, without love, without loyalty, without pity. Yet, with the just decree of God before their minds, they never grasped the truth that those who so live are deserving of death; not only those who commit such acts, but those who countenance such a manner of living.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Sums up modern ghey and showbiz culture pretty well.

          • Royinsouthwest

            Although I am against the LGBT agenda there is one thing about Paul’s statement that troubles me.

            God abandoned them to passions which brought dishonour to themselves.Their women exchanged natural for unnatural intercourse; and the men, on their side, giving up natural intercourse with women, were burnt up with desire for each other; men practising vileness with their fellow men. Thus they have received a fitting retribution for their false belief.

            Does Paul mean that gays and lesbians are worse sinners than the rest of us or does he mean sexual confusion is a result of a fallen world? I am inclined towards the second explanation.

          • The latter is the traditional understanding. God gives people over to sin if they stubbornly resist Him.

          • Cressida de Nova

            It is very difficult, if you have not been raised in a structured belief system, to resist the constant bombardment of vileness dressed up in appealing and alluring garb by celebrity focussed immoral pagan media. It is a diurnal toxin which permeates all our lives unless we remove ourselves and live the life of a hermit.

          • We can be in the world but not of it, Cressie.

          • Cressida de Nova

            It means exactly what it says. It is clear. Debauchery and perversion are not conducive to living an integral and healthy life,unacceptable and against man and Godl
            To promote these destructive acts is working against God’s creation, mankind.

          • Albert

            I’d never thought of that. Paul actually says two things: giving up natural intercourse and then homosexuality. Of course, as you have been saying they are both basically the same error, but I had not spotted that Paul might actually be teaching that quite as clearly as this.

        • Cressida de Nova

          Mundabor is antithetic to the essence of Catholicism and Christian behaviour.. His hatred of the new Pope is verging on the psychotic . Anyone can call themselves Catholic, King Kong, a lingerie fetishist or anything else. It does not make it so!

          • CliveM

            Yes, because HJ publicised him, I followed his blog for a while. The man seems to have ‘anger’ problems!

            I will admit to being a bit surprised with regards his attitude to the Pope.

      • Jack’s not so sure. He prefers the terms “grave depravity”, “intrinsically disordered” and “objectively disordered”. However, even these are seen as too harsh nowadays.
        As the CCC teaches:

        Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered’. They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.[2]

        The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfil God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

        Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.[38]

        • William Lewis

          I prefer the term “sin”.

          • And then people will ask: “Why is this a sin?”

          • William Lewis

            ‘cos sex is for marriage, innit?

            Bible says so.

          • Then they will ask “Why can’t homosexuals marry?”

          • William Lewis

            ‘cos marriage is between a man and a woman, innit?

            Jesus says so.

          • But Jesus said nothing about same sex marriage.

          • William Lewis

            He said nothing about the flying spaghetti monster either.

            ‘cos it don’t exist, innit?

          • And you know this how?

          • William Lewis

            I know that same sex marriage cannot exist because Jesus says that marriage is from God and He has ordained it as between a man and a woman.

            I admit that the existence a flying monster made out of flour and eggs is harder to disprove.

          • Maalaistollo

            After all, flying discs containing flour and eggs are seen on Shrove Tuesday. Maybe someone will write a best-seller demonstrating that Christianity has suppressed and corrupted the original FSM religion.
            PS I only offer this to trivialise the debate and thereby annoy Chaucer Chronicle when he’s going round with his mop and bucket.

          • dannybhoy

            From Wall-e..

          • Maalaistollo

            Thank you for that. Who might the ‘foreign contaminant’ be in today’s topic?

          • dannybhoy

            Same sex marriage..

          • William Lewis

            When you have finished trivialising the debate, please can you ensure that all pancakes are removed from the ceiling. Thank you.

            And, yes, Shrove Tuesday was originally the start of Lentil which was the Pastafarian festival before his Noodleness took to the skies in a cloud of flatulence.

          • Cressida de Nova

            The Archbishop of Canterbury in an interview said there are four instances in the NT against ssm. So end of discussion. You either follow the NT or you don’t. If you do not follow the NT you are not a Christian. Simples !

          • Cressida de Nova

            I cannot remember what the references were but he definitely said there were 4.

        • Cressida de Nova

          Not enough unbiased research has been done on the prevalence and increase in homosexuality in the modern age. I am convinced societal approval of perversion through easily accessible pornography is a contributing factor.

  • scottspeig

    This issue is not that important – I agree, which is why I am perplexed by why we keep on hearing that discussions are ongoing.

    It requires splitting so that the liberals can wither and die as God gives them over to their lusts and desires.

    Those of us who hold to Orthodox Christianity can then get on with the more important tasks of mission & social justice in a culture radically different than the King’s reminiscent of the early church days.

  • John

    “By devoting so much time and effort to homosexuality and same-sex marriage, instead of challenging society by deconstructing the question or focusing on issues of poverty and wealth (for example), the Church of England is simply showing itself to share the same obsessions as the world.”

    No. No. No. This is like Jesus saying to the woman at the well. “You’ve gone through five marriages and now you’re living in sin aren’t you?” And her replying, “Oh, but the important thing who owns this well., let’s talk about that shall we?”

    Christians are simply defending a central and crucial doctrine that has implications for the relationship between Christ and the Church, from relentless full-frontal assault. This is not a culture war we started. But it is one we will not just walk away from. And anyway, this is a false dichotomy. Christians are always talking about (and doing much to tackle) poverty and wealth. It’s just that no one listens.

    • Paul Handley

      Absolutely! The key point is that this is *not* a fight the church asked for, but rather one that has been foisted upon it. Orthodox Christian doctrine has a very particular account of human sexual anthropology, and further, one that is diametrically opposed the secular/liberal account that gay Christians tend to adopt. The church cannot just ‘agree to differ’ or prevaricate with ‘good disagreement’ or ‘shared conversations’ but, on the contrary, *must* come down on one side of the argument or the other. To say, ‘we believe in everything’ is the same as saying ‘we believe in nothing’ and such a position will surely spell the end for the Anglican Church.

      • saintmark

        Correct, if the church had stood it’s ground on the issue and said anything out of marriage is fornication and forbidden, then there would not be this problem. As it is now the church will keep going round and round with this issue until everything is declared permissible, just get on with it and let the liberals take over the CofE and all the conservatives can go join the independent and non-conformist churches. It’s going to happen eventually anyway, once you start to compromise you can’t go back.

  • Dominic Stockford

    This is the point that the enemies of Christ and His church are choosing to attack us on, at this moment. It is a poor defender of the full-orbed Gospel who goes off and fights elsewhere.

  • Martin

    The fact that both corners are pink is simply because they are largely indistinguishable in their expressions of support for stable and faithful lesbian-gay-bi relationships; their repudiation of sickening homophobic attitudes and language; and their unified quest for mutual respect, equality, justice and dignity for all LGBT people.

    The fact that both corners are ‘pink’ is down to the pathetic abandonment of the clear teaching of Scripture by those who are supposed to be the shepherds in the CoE.

    “We’re two different sorts of religion,” says the Rt Rev’d Dr Michael Nazir-Ali. “One has a view of God and the Church and Christianity that is completely different from the other.”

    Indeed, one isn’t Christianity at all but the surrender to the baser behaviour of mankind.

    “We need each other,” writes the Rt Rev’d Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester. “I have much to learn in my own pastoral response to LGBTI people and I can only learn it by listening.”

    The Church doesn’t need the sexually immoral:

    Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
    (I Corinthians 6:9-11 [ESV])

    And homosexuality is not an issue worthy of schism: it is simply not of the order of the sort of debate that used to divide the Church: the divinity of Christ, for example, or the nature of his humanity – the great controversy at the Council of Nicæa in AD325 – or even over liturgy or the transforming nature of infant baptism.

    Paul seems to think otherwise:

    It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you.
    (I Corinthians 5:1-2 [ESV])

    Clearly the immoral should be removed from the CoE, and that includes those who support immorality..

    The role of the Bible in addressing the modern question of the place of LGBT people in the Church is complex, not least because where homosexuality is mentioned in Scripture (remembering the word was only coined in 1892), the authors give little sustained consideration of the issue as it manifests in contemporary society.

    Utter rubbish, it’s very simple. There are no ‘gay’ Christians, marriage is only for a man and a woman and sex outside of that union is sin. Couldn’t be simpler.

    Jesus words must teach us something:

    You have heard that it was said, You shall not commit adultery. But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
    (Matthew 5:27-28 [ESV])

    It is not sufficient not to physically commit a sin, you cannot even say I’m gay, for to do so is to allow that sin to rule you, to espouse it as your beloved.

  • The Explorer

    Homosexuality and SSM are not important enough issues to split the Church, but the authority of Scripture is. And, as others have pointed out, the authority of Scripture is what is at stake here.

  • CliveM

    How the heart sinks when you see the words Church of England, Same Sex Marriage and Homosexuality in the same sentence. Groundhog Day, doesn’t do justice to the feeling of frustration and powerlessness I feel when I see that.

    Years (and years) ago I watched a programme where young people asked questions to representatives of various religions what it was all about. When it came to Christianity the questions they asked were about sex. On and on about sex.

    I see their point. We seem obsessed to the exclusion of all else about it.

    You’d think Christ had nothing else to say.

    I think my biggest grudge I have against all the Liberal Bishops and Clergy etc is their selfishness in forcing us all to give consideration to their obsessions.

    I wish they’d shut up.

    • Anton

      young people asked questions to representatives of various religions what it was all about. When it came to Christianity the questions they asked were about sex. On and on about sex. I see their point. We seem obsessed to the exclusion of all else about it.

      Er, who raised the subject again and again?

      • CliveM

        The youngsters in the audience. They asked a broader range of questions to the representatives of other religions.

        The question is why?

        • Anton

          Perhaps because they want the freedom to have sex with whoever they wish and Christianity is the main naysayer in the culture they live in.

          So I still think it is they who are obsessed with sex, not us.

          • CliveM

            Possible interpretation. Either that or they think that’s all the Church has to say.

          • Anton

            They’re told that by the mainstream media. If they came to church they would discover otherwise.

          • CliveM

            Well there is a lot of truth in that. However certain Bishops do play to the gallery a bit. Mentioning no names, cough, Bishop of Buckingham, cough!

          • Anton

            There once was a Bishop of Buckingham…

          • Dominic Stockford

            That can only end badly…

          • The Explorer

            There’s not much rhymes with Buckingham, but that dreadful film ‘The Cook, the Thief, his Wife and her Lover’ managed it. If you don’t know it, there’s graffiti in the men’s lavatory that begins with “There once was a lady from Buckingham/Who had two men and was…”

            How it continues is unknown, for the Thief who is reading it aloud and is prudish breaks off at that point and says, “Disgusting!”

          • Anton

            Never watched it through. Given what he comes up with in his films, I wouldn’t be Peter Greenaway for anything.

          • The Explorer

            Revolting film. Just when you think it couldn’t get worse, it can. For the record, I was an atheist when I watched it.

          • The Explorer

            ..

          • CliveM

            Oops did I send to you, sorry.

          • The Explorer

            No. My fault. My post for Anton went to you by mistake.

    • Anna

      I agree. You almost begin to think that the COE has just one objective, and this is not the salvation of souls or making of disciples, but the so-called equal marriage. Never, in all my years in the Orthodox church do I remember sex being discussed, let alone debated. While this is not always a good thing, because teenagers do have questions (and I did find the willingness to discuss these matters in the evangelical churches I later attended, very refreshing), but all families were simply expected to know what is right for us as Christians. We believed that we had a superior moral code when compared to Muslims or people of other religions. The marriage bond was treated with reverence, and any sex outside of a heterosexual marriage considered a horrible sacrilege.

  • Sybaseguru

    Maybe his Lordship needs to re-read Jesus’ words regarding sexual immorality and how it defiles (eg Mark 7:21). As Jesus was a Jew he would have had the Jewish laws of immorality in mind from Leviticus, where there is absolute clarity on the Gay issue. Unlike the Sabbath law that he clarified, he made no comment on the existing sexual laws (except to add thinking to doing).
    There is a fundamental issue with the Gay lobby in that it seeks to overturn scripture, rejecting Gods laws and substituting human feelings in their place.

    This is a first order issue that will send people to hell.

    We are not talking about same sex attracted people who try to be celibate, but fail. We are talking about those who openly break Gods laws and are proud of it.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Not just break, but also ‘deny’ that they are God’s laws.

  • Dreadnaught

    The Churches obsess about sex as much as the Homos and variations thereof. Boring.

  • ecclesiaman

    I am disturbed again. HG sets out the issues clearly and apparently suggests that the controversy can, or should be, resolved by mutual acceptance. Neither side, nor an ambivalent middle if there is one, can honestly give ground. Scripture and tradition are both clear but what is new is the push, or should I say shove, for long held opinions to be totally and absolutely overturned.
    To accept an LGBT etc inclusivity to be adopted, both God’s creative pattern and scripture have to be radically changed. God does not change. SSM has brought about this apparent dilemma which is not a dilemma except to the liberal progressives who want to make God in their own image. Down the line will come requests for the approval of bestiality and paedophilia. The downward path is being opened if the case is lost. Does not the current gender issue warn of this? Not genuine dysphoria which needs pastoral care, possibly beyond clerics to handle.
    It is not a small matter. The very nature and character of God is at stake. Change that and Pandora’s box is open.

  • “And please don’t think that this is an exclusively Anglican schism: there are LGBT Catholics who are currently perched between two popes: Pope (Emeritus) Benedict XVI, for whom the practice of homosexuality is “an intrinsic moral evil”; the inclination “an objective disorder”. And Pope Francis, for whom the inclination is “not a problem”; and the practice is… well, who is he to judge?”

    Whilst Jack agrees there some within the Catholic Church who promote homosexuality, this is not an accurate account of Pope Francis. His actual words: “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge him? The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains this very well. It says they should not be marginalised because of this (orientation) but that they must be integrated into society. The problem is not having this orientation. We must be brothers. The problem is lobbying by this orientation.”

    The Catholic Church’s position is outlined in the Catechism Pope Francis referred to:

    Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered’. They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

    The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfil God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

    Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

  • chefofsinners

    This is all about the original question: “Has God really said?”

    • chefofsinners

      As Eve said:
      “The whole issue really is a non-issue because the wrong question is being asked. The modern era is fruit-obsessed: we live in a consumer society, and there is little that is marketed without a quince, a kiwi, an apricot, a melon, or allusions to bananas, because ‘fruit sells’.

      This debate has been blown out of all proportion: it is not an issue on which mankind and God should be separated, nor an issue worthy of schism. It is a question utterly peculiar to the age, and those on both sides of the divide might consider toning down the rhetoric.

      Ooh what lovely fig leaves! When I’m a bishop I’ll make my robe out of those.”

      • “Adam, don’t just sit there sulking. What’s done is done. There is work to do. Get planting. We must have fig trees of different colours and shades. And don’t forget the hunting. Oh, and don’t be too tired tonight.”

  • Anton

    The 20th anniversary of this issue ‘going public’ took place on 10th October last year, the event being Anne Atkins’ BBC Radio 4 “Thought for the Day” (a ‘religious’ slot) in 1996 in which she spoke negatively of homosexuality and was criticised from within and outside the church.

    • Dominic Stockford

      She continues to take a stand based on Biblical Principle, for which I applaud her.

  • dannybhoy

    Ot.
    Thanks to all who have donated (masons?) to the blog. I know some of you have because it’s gone up since I made a (non masonic) donation. Please keep the pennies flowing in so that this blog can continue giving us a voice.
    Danny.

  • Inspector General

    Hold the line, you synod types! This uprising will eventually subside. It’s not just the church, they’re out and about everywhere fighting to dominate. They’re time has come they think. We know it hasn’t. And so will they eventually…

    But let’s imagine if the activists do get their way in the CoE…

    Like all terrorists groups that come to power, they’ll be planning on sticking around, forever. Within a week, there will be announced the “Church of England LGBT Forum”. Oh yes, by order of the AoC (because if he doesn’t, he’ll continue to be a heartless bigoted homophobe). The Forum will sit frequently, and review church policy from an LGBT point of view. Oh yes they will, all of it. The Forum will present their findings to the AoC who will listen to them because if he doesn’t, he’ll be a heartless homophobic bigot. Church policy, old and new, will reflect LGBT requirements every time. Oh yes it will, otherwise the policy will be the policy of not just bigots, but homophobic heartless ones.

    Get the picture, chaps? Give them credit though, not bad for a crowd of unhappy sexual steriles who have problems with the boy / girl stuff and that it’s obviously our fault that we’re not understanding enough, for whom mental issues, relationship problems, and indeed bodily disease are no strangers to many. You’d feel like throwing your hat in the air for them. Well, almost.

    You’ll also be surprised who joins the Church of England LGBT Forum. Homosexual activists whom you’d never expected to see in a church. Why? Because it gives them power. And it will help with the queering of the church. Although Big Gay loathes Christianity through Leviticus, it won’t turn down the chance of forming a power base within. And synod will have to work with them. Won’t that be nice…

    So. Let’s try and see beyond the immediate, synod. If you dare!

    • Royinsouthwest

      So far the acronym LGBT has been a bit misleading because, unless I have missed something, this dispute has been largely about gays and lesbians. Even if the gay and lesbian campaigners get their way the same campaign will start up again but with a new focus on bisexuals, transexuals, and those who are not sure what sex they are today.

      As far as the mainstream media is concerned Christianity today can only ever be newsworthy for two reasons; church leaders’ acceptance or rejection of the LGBT agenda or allegations of sexual abuse of children by priests. After all, is there anything else that is newsworthy going on in the Church?

      I am getting thoroughly fed up with these issues. In the case of sexual abuse although the fault lies mainly with the culprits the reputation of the Church has understandably suffered considerable damage both because of the actions of rogue priests but also for the unforgivable cover-ups that have occurred in some cases and for failures to stop such rogue priests. Similar failures have occurred in other institutions (e.g. the BBC and Saville, Jonathan King etc, police and local government for allowing sexual abuse for reasons of political correctness in Rotherham and many other English towns) but that does not in any way excuse the Church’s sins.

      In the case of the church’s attitude to LGBT the only reason this is newsworthy is the continuous trouble-making of LGBT who want endorsement of their proclivities.

  • Just to remind communicants of Dreadnaught’s immortal words:

    “Bugger the Bickering Bishops.”

    Contender for comment of the year ….

  • dannybhoy

    ““We need each other,” writes the Rt Rev’d Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester. “I have much to learn in my own pastoral response to LGBTI people and I can only learn it by listening.”
    This I agree with, as long as it is done within the context of acceptance of holiness and worship, then fellowship. We discuss issues in the presence of God, not democracy..

    • Inspector General

      Serious statement here, Danny. If an Anglican bishop has problems with pastoral whatever for this tiny minority of eternal needing, he can do worse than ask a Roman Catholic one. That’s the best way to learn, and he can do so in the knowledge that you have to know your stuff in the RCC to be handed an episcopacy.

      • dannybhoy

        I wouldn’t have a problem with that as long as the Roman Catholic is seriously devout and not just legalistic. Even a joint discussion, but It would be up to the Bishop himself.

        • Here’s the Catholic pastoral and doctrinal position as stated in the Catechism:

          The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfil God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

          Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

          One should understand, empathise, accompany and encourage without compromising on morality.

          • dannybhoy

            Well I agree with that wholeheartedly, and as long as the priest representing that part of the Catechism is both true to the Gospel and sympathetic to this group of people, there should be no problem.

          • The problem is “this group of people” are diverse. Some accept Christian teaching, do not identify as “gay” and live according to God’s laws. Others want Christian teaching to change to accept them and want the Church’s endorsement. Then there’ll be a group in the middle who are confused, ambivalent and possibly angry about their orientation and who find it a great trial to live chastely.

          • dannybhoy

            Then you boot out the trouble makers by saying “the Church is not going to change the clear meaning of Scripture”, and try to communicate with the rest.

          • Martin

            Danny

            And there lies the problem. For HJ the church is the interpreter of Scripture as well as the interpreter of it’s previous interpretations. If it decides to say that ‘gay’ is perfectly acceptable and that has always been it’s teaching and the teaching of he Bible, no one can deny it is right.

          • dannybhoy

            I understand that Martin, but where the Roman Catholic Church acts in accordance with Scripture, then I wouldn’t see why I should have a problem with it.
            Neither of us accept the authority of the RCC, but that does not mean that everything they do is wrong. For instance the wife and I were asked by a Catholic friend to attend the first communion of her young daughter.
            During the service we sang this hymn…

            “Longing for light, we wait in darkness.
            Longing for truth, we turn to you.
            Make us your own, your holy people,
            Light for the world to see.

            Christ, be our light! Shine in our hearts.
            Shine through the darkness.
            Christ, be our light!
            Shine in your church gathered today.

            Longing for peace, our world is troubled.
            Longing for hope, many despair.
            Your word alone has pow’r to save us.
            Make us your living voice.

            Christ, be our light! Shine in our hearts.
            Shine through the darkness.
            Christ, be our light!
            Shine in your church gathered today.

            Longing for food, many are hungry.
            Longing for water, many still thirst.
            Make us your bread, broken for others,
            shared until all are fed.

            Christ, be our light! Shine in our hearts.
            Shine through the darkness.
            Christ, be our light!
            Shine in your church gathered today.

            Longing for shelter, many are homeless.
            Longing for warmth, many are cold.
            Make us your building, sheltering others,
            walls made of living stone.

            Christ, be our light! Shine in our hearts.
            Shine through the darkness.
            Christ, be our light!
            Shine in your church gathered today.

            Many the gifts, many the people,
            many the hearts that yearn to belong.
            Let us be servants to one another,
            making your kingdom come.

            Christ, be our light! Shine in our hearts.
            Shine through the darkness.
            Christ, be our light!
            Shine in your church gathered today.”

            Now we thought that was a lovely hymn and we sang it at our family service at the Methodists last Sunday.

          • Martin

            Danny

            I’d be doubtful about that first line, Christ is the light that has lightened the Gentiles. Christians have the light.

          • dannybhoy

            Now you’re back in nitpicky territory Martin. There are lots of hymns that have dodgy lyrics, and you know why?
            Cos people with dodgy theology wrote them.
            There are no perfect people nor watertight theologies.
            But Christianity as you know, is not about intellectual perfection but a living relationship with God..
            Here’s another old hymn that meant a lot to me as a young Christian.and there’s iffy bits in that too,,
            I WILL PILOT THEE
            Words and music: Mrs. Emily D. Wilson

            Sometimes when my faith would falter,
            And no sunlight I can see,
            I just lift mine eyes to Jesus,
            And I whisper, “Pilot me.”

            Chorus
            Fear thou not, for I am with thee.
            I will still thy Pilot be.
            Never mind these tossing billows,
            Take My hand, and trust in Me

            Often when my soul is weary,
            And the day seems oh, so long,
            I just look up to my Pilot,
            And I hear this blessed song:

            Chorus

            When temptations ’round me gather,
            And I almost lose my way,
            Somehow, in the raging tempest,
            I can hear my Savior say:

            Chorus

          • Martin

            Danny

            I’m very picky about hymns, for instance I won’t sing ones by guys who don’t take off their hats in church.

          • That rules out all the Psalms then given the Jews cover their heads when worshipping.

          • Martin

            HJ

            But not in church.

            There is a version of the 23rd Psalm I will not sing tho’, the one with a chorus.

          • “I won’t sing ones (hymns) by guys who don’t take off their hats in church.”

            The Psalms were written by Jews – they covered their heads in the synagogue and at the Temple.

          • Martin

            HJ

            But not in church.

          • If you understood Judaism better you might begin to understand the meaning of priestly vestments.

          • Martin

            HJ

            The Jewish sacrifices are finished, they were superseded by that one great sacrifice that is never to be repeated, and hence there is no longer an office of priest on Earth. The robes have gone the way of all flesh.

          • Yes, Martin.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Glad you agree.

          • Yes, but the point is the Psalms were written by a man who kept his head covered during worship.

          • Martin

            HJ

            But not in church.

          • Anton

            You presumably mean “I will trust in you alone”. What’s wrong with that, given that the aim is worship, not Bible exposition?

          • Martin

            Anton

            Primarily the author who has chosen to play around with God’s word in a way that implies it is in adequate.

          • Anton

            I’m surprised you’re willing to sing hymns rather than the psalms exclusively, and those acapella.

          • Martin

            Anton

            There’s a lot to be said for singing Psalms, sadly the church I attend has stopped doing so. They’ve also stopped singing some of the great hymns of the past. Very sad.

          • CliveM

            Deserves an uptick.

          • Anton

            How on earth do you get that information about them?

          • Martin

            Anton

            I’m being facetious about a certain song writer.

          • dannybhoy

            Very sensible too.

          • Anton

            Bishops and Orthodox priests regularly appear in services wearing spectacularly ornate headgear. Bet they never preach 1 Corinthians 11 wearing them though.

          • There’s no doubtful theology in that hymn at all.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Your theology is doubtful.

          • Perhaps, but we’re talking about a particular hymn.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Like the hymn.

          • Yes, Jack understood it and t was nonsense.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Only in terms of your theology, which is in error.

          • Anton

            Agreed. I simply fall silent for lines I don’t agree with. Why go further?

          • Martin

            Anton

            If the author is not a Christian, such as J H Newman, I don’t sing it at all.

          • But it does not, never has and never will teach such a thing. It’s an impossibility.
            .
            The Magisterium builds on scriptural revelation, past teachings and theological insights, and uses reason and logic to formulate it doctrines. It is not driven by emotion or popular culture. It also adjusts and adapts her doctrinal positions, without changes to the premises, to suit changes in the world.

            Agree or disagree about whether its right or wrong, you cannot deny its constancy in matters of morals. This is now under threat but, by the grace of God, and relying on the promise of Christ, it will not buckle.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Of course it doesn’t and as evidence it presents its own interpretation of what it has consistently taught. If you thought it had taught otherwise you are relying on your own understanding rather than the clear teaching of the Church,

          • Catholics aren’t idiots, Martin. These documents of the Church are produced after considerable study and reflection. Any inconsistencies or apparent changes would be seized on by the faithful and by the Church’s enemies.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Of course they would be.

          • If you can think of an example then cite it.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Cardinal Newman on the subject of papal infallibility.

          • Yes ….. ?

          • Martin

            HJ

            Glad you agree.

          • Cite the “editing” of Church documents.

          • Martin

            HJ

            As in the burning of Pope Honorius’ document supporting monothelitism?

          • Jack notes you provide no evidence from Cardinal Newman.

            Pope Honorius’ heretical document was his personal opinion and not a statement of the Magisterium. In the same way Catholics can take or leave Pope Francis’ off-the-cuff personal opinions to the press. What matters is formal teachings.

            Cite one where the Church has “edited” previous formally binding statements.

          • Martin

            HJ

            You asked for an example, I gave you one. Do you deny his position changed with respect to the subject of papal infallibility?

            Isn’t it easy to deny that a pope is speaking infallibly. All you have to say is that it was his personal opinion. How do you imagine those around Honorius took his statements at the time? And what constitutes formal teaching? I doubt whether you have the ability to tell whether a pope is being infallible or not at the time he is speaking. Papal infallibility is therefore somewhat of a nonsense.

            Demonstrate that Honorius’ statements were never considered binding.

          • Cardinal Newman was perfectly entitled to express his views and opinions, as are all Catholics, until a definitive position is reached by the Magisterium. Newman’s reservations were about perception – not the substance of Papal infallibility. You should perhaps read his developing views about personal conscious too and Church doctrine.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Newman’s answer to the problem of Rome inventing new doctrines that were unknown to the Early Church is his development hypothesis. At it’s heart is the problem a historian has in justifying the pronouncements of the Roman church.

          • Please cite a reference substantiating that.

          • Martin

            HJ

            So how do you explain his idea that doctrines develop? Indeed, how do you explain the lack of so many of Rome’s dogmas in the early Church?

          • No citation, then.

          • Martin

            HJ

            You have a better idea for what he proposed?

          • CliveM

            Martin

            A simple way of concluding this argument would be for you to give an example where the magisterium has changed its mind.

            Otherwise I think fairness suggests you concede there is a consistency of position as HJ claims.

          • Martin

            Clive

            Of course there is a consistency of position, the magisterium is alone has the ability to interpret what the magisterium says. So if you think that the magisterium has changed its mind it is because you are not relying on the magisterium to interpret what the magisterium has said.

          • CliveM

            Martin

            Give an example.

          • Martin

            Clive

            An example of what, Rome saying that they alone have the authority to interpret what they say? Listen to a few debates between their apologists and Protestants, you’ll soon get the idea.

          • CliveM

            Martin

            I know the claims made. However you made the accusation that they can change the interpretation on their pronouncements, in effect giving it a completely different meaning to the original interpretation. I had assumed you had examples in mind of them doing so, so asked you to provide them.

            Are you saying they can do it, but have never done so and therefore are unable to provide an example?

            If so, as accusations go, it’s something of nothing and you would need to acknowledge that to HJ. You wouldn’t be agreeing with the RCC interpretation, but simply acknowledging that they have at least been consistent.

          • Martin

            Clive

            As I said, listen to a few debates.

          • CliveM

            Martin

            Youre ducking it.

          • Martin

            Clive

            I always do.

          • Rather Jack would say: The Church cannot and will not change its definitive position, based on scripture, reason and 2000 years of constant teaching. The choice is yours whether you remain or stay – but do not present yourself for Holy Communion without repenting of your sin and, with God’s grace, seeking to amend your life.

          • David

            Amen !

          • Anton

            Tell Canterbury!

          • dannybhoy

            Yes.. I continue praying for the Church and men like Gavin Ashenden and all the others of good will. We need revival in the Church Anton. I would love to see an official Sunday of Repentance, Re-dedication and Rejoicing announced by the Church of England. Now that would make a real difference.

          • David

            Well said.

      • Hmmm …. there’s good, bad and indifferent in the Catholic episcopacy these days too.

        • David

          I appreciate and respect your honesty.

        • Anton

          Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo.

  • chefofsinners

    Men are from Mars, women are from Venus. Retired bishops are from Uranus.

    • William Lewis

      Astronaughtiness.

    • dannybhoy

      Stinker!

    • Inspector General

      It’s a serious business, little chef, and not a subject of levity. More than 90% of homosexual disease is contracted via that much abused organ…

      • chefofsinners

        We have a piano at our church.

        • Did you take up Peter Ould’s bet?

          • chefofsinners

            No, gambling is a sin.

          • Lol ….

            Is that in scripture?

          • chefofsinners

            The wagers of sin is death.

          • Yet we also have – “cast your bread upon the waters” (waters, as scholars now know, is an Aramaic euphemism for bookies).

          • Martin

            HJ

            And bread?

          • Another Aramaic term meaning money. Passed down to English too, probably by missionaries. Look in the Oxford dictionary. You’ll see it’s slang for money. Not to be confused with cockney rhyming slang – brown bread.

          • Martin

            Who’d have guessed it.

          • chefofsinners

            Read the story of the storm on the lake. You will find that our Lord rebuked the high rollers.

          • Tsk, tsk. It’s a metaphor. He was rebuking the bookies for setting unfair odds.

          • Anton

            The sin of wagers?

          • dannybhoy

            You are a hoot Chef..

          • CliveM

            Particularly if you’re going to lose…………!

        • Anton

          Sounds like the first line of something that goes to Ilkley Moor Bar T’At

        • Pubcrawler

          Cottage upright?

      • Is that a fact or an Inspector’s opinion? Many homosexual men do not engage in sodomy and yet can and do contract the full range of STI’s.

        • Inspector General

          A small number contract diseases such as (often antibiotic resistant) oral gonorrhoea, but if you come across any who claim that yet come down with the ‘full range’ you can put your next months pension money on them opening their bowel to strangers as well…

          • HIV can be transmitted through the mouth too.

          • Inspector General

            Yes, it can and has been. But you have to remember this. These sexual aberrants
            are skilled liars. They have plenty of practice at that from lying, straight faced, to their partners who are also probably cheating. Lying to third parties then is just a walk in the park for them…

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        IG, you must have a cast iron stomach to investigate the perverted plethora of ghey sexual practices.

        • Inspector General

          What one has endured in the past has sent the Inspector wobbly, and that’s God’s truth. But as one of Christ’s soldiers, he found the grace to go on…

          One is reminded of the ‘Inspector’s Challenge’ of some years back, offered to Anglican clergy. Read Pink News, every item, for an entire month. Then to reassess their commitment to the ’cause’ as the useful idiots militant atheist gays see them as…

    • Anton

      Colon-ise?

      • chefofsinners

        Never waste a word.

        • Anton

          Allez, monsewer.

        • carl jacobs

          There are now twelve-step programs for people with your affliction. The first step is admitting you have a problem.

          • You tell him, Carl. He’s a bad influence and Happy Jack is having great difficulty restraining himself.

          • Pubcrawler

            Let it all out! Purge yourself!

          • Anton

            Indeed. He believes in Purgatory.

          • Get thee behind Jack, Pubcrawler.

          • Pubcrawler

            Not while you’re purging yourself, thanks.

          • Anton

            I credit Jack with meaning that

  • Mike Stallard

    “But the whole issue really is a non-issue because the wrong question is being asked. ”
    Definitions.
    Homophobe, homosexual, are pseudo Freudian words which have no force really.
    Homosexuals are people who fancy people of the same sex. Yup. And isn’t that playing into the hands of Freud who attributed everything to sex? Friendship between men and men and women and women and women is possible. Is friendship the same as lust? God forbid. That really is threatening.
    And as to sex. You can have sex with anybody can’t you. No problem. Why stick to just one sex? The idea that some people simply fancy one sex above the other permanently because “they are made that way” needs to be questioned.
    Marriage? The same as sodomy? Not really. Children?
    Socially sodomites are not popular. Don’t pretend they are. Do you honestly think they ever will be? Shirt lifters are abhorred in the army. They threaten friendship and team building and most of us men like to think that we are safe in the company of other men.

    When the women priest debate was going on, it simply failed to address the fact that women cannot go out alone at night. Many of them like to be at home doing paperwork or in nice safe meetings with other women. They find it hard to visit strange people’s houses without knowing who is behind the door. By and large, they put children before everyone else. And what happens to their husbands?
    None of these “unimportant things” were discussed.
    Let’s not make the same mistake again please.

  • David

    Life is busy at the moment, so once again a very late and brief pair of comments.

    First and foremost, this is about whether we follow God, and his revelations, principally through the Bible, but also from Tradition and Reason, or whether we follow the world. For me there is only one path open.

    Secondly the Devil must be very pleased with himself for diverting so much Christian energy, time, brainpower, resource and media attention into this river which peters out, wasted, in a dry, parched land, instead of all this spiritual, mental and sheer physical effort, energy, imagination and creativity being channeled into the true, gushing, refreshing river of life, that is the Gospel of Our Risen Lord, Saviour and King, Jesus Christ.

    These bishops, alleged Princes of the Church, that preside, strut and dress up, have much to answer for. May God have mercy on their souls.

    • Anton

      They can wear absurd kit as much as they like. It’s taking money from the faithful to sow doubt that is utterly unacceptable.

  • Albert

    And please don’t think that this is an exclusively Anglican schism: there are LGBT Catholics who are currently perched between two popes: Pope (Emeritus) Benedict XVI, for whom the practice of homosexuality is “an intrinsic moral evil”; the inclination “an objective disorder”. And Pope Francis, for whom the inclination is “not a problem”; and the practice is… well, who is he to judge?

    You don’t really believe that’s an adequate or fair account of the positions do you?

  • Albert

    Gosh. This blog post turned out to be more liberal than I expected.

    • 1642+5thMonarchy

      I don’t think so. People are rightly distinguishing between hating the sin and trying to love the sinner. Isn’t that what Christians are supposed to do?

      • Albert

        The issue is over whether the CofE should stay together or apart, that is, whether teaching on homosexuality is just a matter of opinion. I would have thought that Cranmer would think not, but with hindsight, I have a feeling that he has given this kind of position before, so I shouldn’t have been so surprised.

        • Martin

          Albert

          He’s dedicated to tradition, just like you.

          • Albert

            Sorry, what’s the tradition that supports homosexual acts?

          • Martin

            Albert

            The tradition of a united CoE, not of doctrine.

          • Cheap shot and not true about Albert or the Catholic Church.

          • Martin

            HJ

            They don’t believe in tradition?

          • There’s a difference between sacred Tradition – the constant teachings of the Church – and a tradition that attempts to achieve a consensus, regardless of Truth to hold the Church together.

          • Martin

            HJ

            Not really, they all need to be tested against the Bible.

          • Albert

            I see what you mean – yes, I think that’s what’s going on.

        • Jack believes Cranmer is conflicted on this. On the one hand he says:

          “That God established an objective, moral order in creation, and continues a work of re-creation through Jesus, is a source and standard of all that it beautiful, good and true. If such a moral order means anything, there may be no via media on the issue of homosexuality. Accepting theological diversity is not the same as tolerating all beliefs and practices, because ultimately the Church is called to be holy because God is holy (Lev 19:2; Mt 5:48). We cannot, as Christians, just give way to a ‘you believe this, I believe that’ approach to being together, or moving apart, in the Church. Nor even can we be content with the rather cheap model of ‘reconciled diversity’, meaning benign tolerance, which many Christians find an easier option to the costlier pursuit of real, visible unity. “

          Yet, he then concludes this paragraph with:

          “We need to continue to struggle together for the truth, to find the right and godly balance between the call to solidarity and the recognition of difference. Presently, nowhere is this more important – – especially in the Anglican Communion – than in the area of homosexuality.”

          There is no struggle for the truth in this matter. The answer is as clear the nose on one’s face. As he rightly states there can be no via media on this issue if there is an immutable, moral order revealed to us by God and taught consistently by the Church for 2000 years.

        • Albert, I don’t think Cranmer is saying anything in support of homosexual practice. It appears to me that his leaning is to the method and style by which it is being dealt with in the CofE. I believe Cranmer is saying that the CofE should be focussed on mission, spreading the Gospel, and that issues where salvation is not a determining factor should be dealt with through amicable discussion.

          Personally, I would tend to disagree with Cranmer, if my summation of his thoughts is correct, as the view that seems to prevail among those in favour of SSM etc is that Jesus spoke about what prevailed in His day and had no knowledge that one day monogamous, life-long same sex relationships would exist. This view completely changes the view of either The Son or God as a whole, as either Jesus was not fully God, thus unable to know all things, or God does not know all things. As such the nature of God, in the eyes of those who argue that same sex relationships are compatible with Scripture, differs hugely from those who argue for the traditional orthodoxy that the Church has stood by since its inception.

          Therefore I would say that a line must be drawn, a vote must be had and a decision on what the CofE believes about human sexuality. Priests who leave the official line should be defrocked and those who cannot abide by the decision should leave the CofE. And I don’t say this lightly. I am under no illusion that it is a foregone conclusion in the way I would wish to see it go. If the vote were to go against orthodoxy then I would be compelled to leave the CofE, which is a problem as I am a youth worker in a CofE church. However the distraction that the human sexuality debate causes is stifling the CofE in its mission of reaching the nation with the Good News. If it is to do that, and do it correctly, I believe it needs to have the vote, unfudge the past decades of attempting to avoid conflict and create clarity around the orthodoxy of Scripture. To do anything else is to bring on more interminable repeats of the same, keep the CofE in the news for all the wrong things and drag us further into the mire that will most likely see more of the Faithful depart and those who seek to impose societal “norms” on the CofE increase in volume.

          • Albert

            Phil, thank you – I think I agreed with everything you have said here, and I feel for you given that you may have hard choices to make.

            I think your interpretation of Cranmer is correct. For me his position is a bit like someone who says “I’m opposed to abortion, I think it’s murder, but I think it should be legal, because I don’t think anyone should impose their view on women.” That position, though popular is frankly contradictory, unless one thinks murder is people should be allowed to commit if they feel they need to!

            Homosexuality is an issue of salvation, insofar as certain acts would seem to risk one’s salvation. A prima facie scriptural view is that homosexuality is one of those things. Of course, someone may disagree that that interpretation is correct, but someone who agrees (Dr C) must surely see the issue as that important.

            It is hugely frustrating how much time the CofE spends arguing about such things. I take Dr C’s point about mission, but mission cannot be logically prior to the message. A further problem with the CofE is that it seems to think that being pastoral is about telling people nice things. Certainly, being pastoral means being gentle, understanding and patient. But in the end, “pastor” comes from the Latin for shepherd, and a shepherd’s first role is to guide the sheep away from danger…

          • Agreed, though I’d suggest you need to change the use of the term “homosexuality” in para 2 to “homosexual practice/acts”, as I do not believe the inclination in and of itself is a salvation issue, nor do I believe Paul suggests so.

          • Albert

            Completely agree. I normally avoid saying “homosexuality” for precisely that reason. I thought I would get away with it here because I qualified it by saying insofar as certain acts would seem to risk one’s salvation. Sin only applies to things people choose. Since we do not appear to choose our orientation, it follows orientation is not a matter of sin. Nevertheless, an orientation may be objectively disordered. Hence, contrary to Cranmer’s rather clumsey attempt to show the Catholic Church has the same confusion, it is entirely consistent to say: the practice of homosexuality is “an intrinsic moral evil”; the inclination “an objective disorder” [Benedict XVI]. And Pope Francis, for whom the inclination is “not a problem.”

          • I only picked it up because I would want it to be clear to all who read this, I knew it was what you meant.
            As to the RCC, I would agree with Cranmer in saying there is confusion at the top, given that Pope Francis (why can’t you have something like we have for bishops and archbishops, + and ++, for the Pope, it’s make things a lot easier typing *Francis!) has taken a more liberal leaning in his message regarding homosexual relations. I would also say that I agree with the words of Pope Benedict, in as much as the orientation is clearly at odds with the intended will of God for the world and so is an aberration (the inclination, not the person). It is not a sin, but it is not what was intended and contrary to God’s will and is, sadly, a result of a fallen world.

          • Albert

            Pope Francis was, I think, speaking of the inclination not of actions – and so we both agree with him. Beyond that, it is interesting to recall that in December, Francis approved the position of Benedict on the priesthood:

            the Church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question, cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practice homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called ‘gay culture

            Personally, I think that’s actually a bit strong. The Vatican seems to think that someone with deep-seated homosexual tendencies (which seems in contradistinction to “transitory” adolescent confusion) has difficulties relating to men and women “correctly”. I can think of examples of that, but I can think of counter-examples.

            What evidence do you have that Francis is more liberal on homosexual relation?

          • I cannot give specifics, just the impression I have from various things that Pope Francis has said seems to suggest that he is more liberal. Now, I would point out that that is very much a RCC liberal leaning, which is nowhere near what a CofE liberal is like, but I would still see him as being more liberal than Pope Benedict is on the matter.

          • Albert

            I think that is the impression Francis gives – but I think it is misleading. I think Benedict was far gentler but clearer. The media have decided they like Francis – he connects with people and so they give him an easy ride = in the modern world, that they tell people he’s liberal. But he isn’t really, I think, except perhaps on questions of divorce. Benedict they didn’t like because they found him harder to promote.

      • worrywort

        As a Christian,I believe Homosexuals should be (barely) tolerated. and never celebrated

  • bluedog

    One awaits with bated breath His Grace’s analysis of the President’s address to the Synod.

    • Anton

      Much as I respect His Grace, I am more interested in what actually happens in Synod than anybody’s analysis of it.

      • bluedog

        Indeed, substance should always trump form. But the speech given by the Synod President is inevitably the point at which form and substance combine. To that extent the speech is something that happens and it was an interesting, if not contentious speech. So much so that the President has already issued a clarifying tweet, presumably to deflect criticism.

        • Anton

          Anybody know what time today this matter is to be debated?

  • Martin

    Actually, chucking out the heretics isn’t the same as tearing itself apart, it’s called Church Discipline.

  • Anton

    To remind readers what we are up against, here are the first two pages of the gay liturgy from Westcott House training college for Anglican ordinands, evening prayer on the last day of January:

    https://www.scribd.com/document/338361827/Polari-Evensong-Westcott-House-1

    https://www.scribd.com/document/338361885/Polari-Evensong-Westcott-House-2

    Whoever is not with me is against me – Christ, in Matthew 12:30.

  • ChaucerChronicle

    Your Grace

    A brilliant analysis: it is about ‘sex’ (and behind that the nihilism of materialism).

    The other day I was explaining technological developments to a retired missionary (1928 – ?). I told her that men were producing machines in the ‘image of man’ so that they can have ‘sex’ with them. She was dumb struck by the moral degeneration of man in her own life time.

    How did we get to this point in time where that which is abnormal challenges that which is normal; not only for legitimacy, but also for acceptance supported by criminal and civil laws?

    Early in the 20th century the Church of England gave the nod to the use of condoms, thereby severing the link between sex and procreation (the Roman Catholics remained resolute). Our fathers knew, without the aid of materialism (sociological research) that fornication will lead to loss of commitment to marriage, the wounds of adultery and broken children. This generation can only acknowledge that which can be counted as real (a symptom of materialism): the tried and tested doctrines are mere abstract theories.

    By the late 1940s Prof CS Lewis warned of privileging the sex impulse above others. By the 1960s, the Church of England consented to the termination of lives in the womb (in furtherance of women’s equality) and the decriminalisation of homosexuality. This was followed by the liberalisation of divorce law so that at the end of the decade, certainly by the early 1970s, local newspapers reported who was getting divorced: news.

    Lewis also warned (Priestesses in the Church?) not to treat sex (male and female) as mere interchangeable counters for the ‘priesthood’: ‘We cannot shuffle or tamper so much. With the Church, we are farther in: for there we are dealing with male and female not merely as facts of nature but as the live and awful shadows of realities utterly beyond our control and largely beyond our direct knowledge. Or rather, we are not dealing with them but (as we shall soon learn if we meddle) they are dealing with us.’

    By the late 1990s, having discarded Lewis’ advice, female ‘priests’ were appointed: now we have them as bishops.

    As sex is interchangeable, neutered, then there is no theoretical justification on barring the homosexual and the transgendered from the ‘priesthood’.

    You said that the: ‘The battle in the political realm is really a consequence of that in the spiritual.’

    I have been advised that we are the ‘salt of the earth’: society’s preservative. Well, I am impelled to conclude that we must have lost our quality to preserve. I have witnessed fornication in student Christian Unions and adultery in our churches ending in divorce and children crying: ‘Where is my Daddy?’

    This evening mine eyes fell upon a verse that I have frequently passed over: ‘ If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honoured, all rejoice together.’

    I have often thought, that I do not suffer what others suffer; so what has this verse got to do with my situation?

    Of course, my analysis has been one produced by ignorance. It seems to me that the verse is suggesting:

    1. We are all members one of another;
    2. If one of us suffers (defeat in the spiritual realm);
    3. We all as a body suffer.
    4. If one is honoured;
    5. We rejoice as we are all honoured (to some degree or the other).

    I am advised that there is ‘no turning the clock back’, we are where we are. Yet, Wesley, for example, surveying the social, moral and spiritual degradation of Hogarth’s Gin Lane, could not have come to the same conclusion: France did, with the revolution of 1789.

    There is still ‘hope’ that the gates of Hell will not prevail against the Church; the reformation begins with us, in the pew.

    • Anton

      God himself partially severed the link between sex and procreation when he made the human female sexually receptive when not fertile, unlike animals with the same reproductive physiology.

      Also, Luke’s version of the salt comment shows that Jesus meant the salt that stopped Jerusalem’s dungheap stinking, a far stronger image than preservation.

      Otherwise, well said !

      • Why did God make men prone to spreading their seeds?
        He made her sexually receptive when not fertile in order to maintain a monogamous relationship with one partner.

        • Jack has never thought of it in this way. Trust a woman to have this insight.

        • 1642+5thMonarchy

          Which is why birth control within Christian marriage is not a Sin. Physical intimacy helps strengthen the bond between husband and wife, and therefore deters adultery and the damage that result. Birth control outside marriage is of course different as it encourages reckless Sinfulness by divorcing material consequences from the act of Sin.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            I know this may read as a paradox; but I would’ve thought spending time apart, rather than durex, would strengthen intimacy.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Perhaps for some, but not most I suspect.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            I think CS Lewis once said something like: ‘It’s not the having it; it’s the pursuit of it that brings the intense joy’.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Have you ever been happily married?

          • ChaucerChronicle

            No.

      • “God himself partially severed the link between sex and procreation when he made the human female sexually receptive when not fertile, unlike animals with the same reproductive physiology.”

        God did no such thing. We are not animals bound to our physiology and instinct. We have a mind, a soul and a body. We are rational creatures with a choice about how we behave. God, in His wisdom, has given us a natural way to plan our families – abstinence during a woman’s fertile period. He understands our need for sexual union during marriage. So we can cooperate with God and His creation, or we can assert our independence and artificially break the link between sex and procreation.

        • Anton

          So if it’s fine for a married couple to have sex when they know that the woman is infertile, why is it not fine for them to have sex using a condom when she is fertile? Their intent is identical in the two situations, after all. Sin always has a bad effect on the soul of the sinner. What bad effect do you believe the latter action would have on them that the former wouldn’t, and why?

          • Mungling

            Catholics are not consequentialists: means matter. Couples spacing children with NFP are cooperating with the natural reproductive rhythym of the body while those using artificial birth control are fustrating it. Its the difference between an individual who uses a tax free savings account and a person comitting tax fraud: the intent and outcome are the same but the means are different. One is guilty of a crime and one is not.

          • Anton

            Understood and thank you, but you are replying to a question of mine without answering it. Would you, please?

          • He did answer it – and so has Jack.

          • Anton

            You are avoiding it. I have taken pains to phrase it as a comparison between two couples having identical intent and am asking for how the supposed sin of one of them rebounds on them psychologically. Can you answer that?

          • Jack just has.

          • Mungling

            Fair enough! So first of all, it’s important to note that while Catholics are permitted to deliberately avoid engaging in the marital act during fertile periods for grave reasons, they are not aloud to do so for any reasons. So right away that colors the situation. But let us say, for the sake of argument, that both couples were spacing children for a legitimate reason. One uses a condom, the other uses NFP.

            In the case of NFP, the couple is utilizing the natural rhythm that God (directly or indirectly) has placed within a woman’s cycle. Since they are cooperating with God, and nature, they are affirming the supremacy of God over his creation. They are, in a sense, operating on God’s time and not their own. That comes with sacrifice. The reality of using NFP is that there will be times when a couple would like to become intimate and cannot; that act of self denial is a deliberate act of uniting one’s will with God’s.

            In the case of artificial birth control, the couple is take mastery of the human body. As I’ve said, it is deliberately frustrating the natural end of a particular action. The message, directly or indirectly, that man is ultimately in control of human nature and man is in charge.

            And so NFP rightly draws one’s attention onto God, His will, and the way He has ordered the universe. Using artificial birth control draws the couple’s attention onto themselves and their desires, goals and will.

            That isn’t to say that NFP is always done with the best intention, or that people can’t treat it like a Catholic-friendly condom. They certainly can, but that’s missing the point. A Catholic abusing NFP is no better than a Catholic using ABC. A Catholic approach to sexuality, rightly understood, isn’t just about the act but about the intention and process behind it.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            What he is doing is using a tactic deployed by pro-homosexual undergraduates. I think CS Lewis referred to it as ‘Bulversim’ and the post-graduate refers to it as ‘debunking’.

            The principle is that sex is for pro-creation.

            For the tactic to work, it must ignore the meta-narrative. An example is when the homosexual equates racism with criticism of homosexuality.
            When it’s pointed out that race is genetically determined and homosexuality isn’t (i.e., a black cannot change his race). The homosexual looks for an outlier counter-example: Michael Jackson.

            The next step is to use that as a counter-example to support the proposition that racism is the moral equivalent of ‘homophobia’, and thereby attempt to weaken belief in the general principle as unsound in terms of its consistency.

            I think his motivation is not to undermine the general principle, but to demonstrate his knowledge of Scripture (though divorced from context).

          • Anton

            Disagree with you once, and you come after someone with ad homs. People use ad homs when they run out of arguments.

            Given that I have said sex is not merely for procreation, and scripture takes a completely different view of race and sexual proclivity, your comments are not cogent.

          • Jack thought the observations were rather insightful.

          • Anton

            Jack is welcome to his opinion.

          • One is cooperating with God through His creation and the natural rhythm He has established. The sexual union has integrity. The use of artificial aids or chemicals in the process breaks this integrity and diminishes the act by placing a barrier, literally and metaphorically, between the couple and between them and their Creator.

            It offends God and damages our soul. It is man attempting to assert his independence over God, excluding reproduction from sex and making pleasure paramount, rather than being co-creators of life with God in an act of selfless giving of self.

            You really should read “Humanae Vitae” – it’s a very prophetic encyclical – and research Saint Pope John Paul’s series of lectures on the “Theology of the Body”.

          • Anton

            Thank you, but I’m asking HOW it (supposedly) damages the soul and what outworkings can be traced to that. My scepticism is because the (married) couple having sex when they know that the woman is infertile and the married couple having sex using a condom when she is fertile have identical intent.

            PS I *have* read Theology of the Body.

          • Jack has answered that – you’re just not receptive to his line of reasoning. The “intent” of the couple using the natural cycle is to cooperate with God by preserving the integrity of the conjugal act – they abstain if they want to plan their family; the couple using artificial barriers break this integrity and assert their needs – sexual pleasure is paramount. Even NFP can be sinful if used for sinful, selfish reasons.

            Unless you inform yourself by reading the documents Jack has suggested – they are available on line – our discussions will be fruitless.

          • Anton

            You just parrot that the latter couple are sinning, and give your reason why it is sin. What you are avoiding is the question I am actually asking: what is the bad effect, psychologically speaking, on the latter couple, of this sin, a bad effect which is not visited on the former couple? Sin always has an outworking of this sort.

          • How can Jack judge how sin manifests itself it the lives of individuals? As he said, read Humanae Vitae. This lists the individual and societal harm caused by artificial birth control as opposed to natural family planning.

          • Anton

            Astutely ducked. If a large number of people commit the same sin then certain characteristics they have in common but not with others will become apparent.

          • Really?

    • Thoughtful.

    • IanCad

      A First-Rater CC!! Time to name names and expose the industries that promote the heresy of denying that our Creator created them male and female.
      We can start with the education, entertainment, and sports promoters who advocate for the embrace of a lifestyle, which, in normal times, would be deemed a public health hazzard.
      Must stop smoking though. Lose those pounds. Wear Hi-viz.

  • The question of homosexuality within the Church and same-sex ‘marriage’ are merely the bitter fruit of the decline of the C of E. The root is the denial of the veracity and authority of Scripture. Deny that, and you are like Noah’s dove who found no resting-place for the sole of her foot. Yet the problem goes back at least 150 years to Bishop Calenzo, and the issue of the place of the Bible in the Church was not resolved then and isn’t today, and there is the constant ratchet of liberalism driving the downgrade in doctrine and practice.
    .
    His Grace says that the C of E should not tear itself apart over homosexuality and same-sex ‘marriage.’ I say that unless the issue of the authority of Scripture is resolved, the C of E will be gone in a few years and jolly good riddance to it. The rats have no intention of leaving the sinking ship; they must either be pushed overboard or the evangelicals must take to the lifeboats.

    • Anton

      Rats is too generous. Try brood of vipers.

  • NortyNina

    Rabbi and Minister clash in Bold Talk on Human Nature, Love, and Israel

    ‘Rabbi David Wolpe, Senior Rabbi of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles, who was named by Newsweek Magazine as the most influential rabbi in America joins Jesse Lee Peterson on this episode of TheFallenState TV. Rabbi Wolpe and Jesse tackle a host of issues including, the meaning of faith, the role of a rabbi, divorce, sin, same-sex weddings, being perfect, ‘racism,’ Jewish-Christian relationships, and anti-Semitism.’
    35 mins long.
    What Minister Jesse Lee Peterson’s simple questioning reveals is wonderful.

    • carl jacobs

      Well, lookie here. Our very own indigenous Nazi has returned to the board to post a completely irrelevant swipe at Jews. Oh wait. There is allegedly something about Same-sex weddings in her Youtube post. Are you ever going to answer the question Nina?. Now would be a good time.

      Someone should ask him if he thinks Israel should open its borders to third worlders too. Put him on the spot, make him condemn Israel publicly. Its people like Friedberg Fraser who prove that Hitler was right.

      What did you mean, Nina, when you said “Hitler was right”.

      Nina’s quote is from a weblog called “Morgoth’s Review”. The article from which Nina’s quote is taken is called “The ‘Nazi EU’ Conspiracy” dated 31 May 2016.

      • Sarky

        Carl, you really gotta stop feeding the stray!

        • carl jacobs

          She can’t even see me, Sark. This is just for the reader unawares.

    • NortyNina

      I seem to have had a reply from someone called ‘you have blocked this troll’.

  • The Explorer

    Pity DanJ0 has stopped contributing.

    • Sarky

      Probably got fed up with the sense of deja vu every time he logged in.

      • The Explorer

        Hope that’s why.

    • IanCad

      IMO. One of the best of the congregation. We need him back.

  • Martin

    Cranmer condemned:

    I was surprised today to see the normally theologically sound “Archbishop Cranmer” making exactly the same point. In a blog post titled “The Church of England should not tear itself apart over homosexuality and same-sex marriage” he argues that “homosexuality is not an issue worthy of schism” as it “affects only a tiny minority of Christians” and is “of distinctly secondary, even peripheral, scriptural importance”. It is not “a battle for the soul of the church”.

    This is a different argument than those normally advanced by people seeking to justify sex outside heterosexual monogamous marriage. But it is equally unbiblical.
    http://pjsaunders.blogspot.co.uk/2017/02/sexual-immorality-is-first-order.html

    • William Lewis

      From the article:

      “…Furthermore, if sexual immorality were simply a “secondary issue” as opposed to a “first order salvation issue”, then the Bible would not link it specifically with salvation. Yet this is exactly what it does.

      1 Corinthians 6:9-10 tells us, ‘neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God’.”

      • Royinsouthwest

        Can you give us a single example of a sin that has no connection with salvation?

        • William Lewis

          Repented for sins.

  • Anton

    Truth above unity this day.

  • Mungling

    Yes and no. Yes, the church is not primarily an institution concerning sexual ethics and so its important not to become solely focused on these issues. With that said, one’s belief on SSM often involves a number of contributing beliefs about tradition, scripture, anthropology, and natural law. These are not small potatoes issues and may, in fact, be worth splitting over. Recognizing that SSM isn’t just about SSM is an important part of understanding conservative opposition.

  • IrishNeanderthal

    Has anyone any comments about George Pitcher’s article in today’s Telegraph?

    I’m a bleeding-heart liberal cleric –but the Church of England must not accept gay marriage

    • CliveM

      Seems a balanced article to me.

      • Anton

        Says marriage should be man and woman but makes clear that gay couples might get a service of blessing for a civil partnership. Silent about what the Bible says.

        • CliveM

          This discusion is in relation to the CofE and its ongoing debate. He did link SSM to what the Church and the book of common prayer says marriage is about. I think its fair to say, as desribed, they conform to biblical undéstanding.

          He didnt say they might get a service of blessing for civil partnerships, he did say in his opinion the CofE should provide one. Which in my mind is an important distinction.

          I do think he is muddle headed on that , as it muddies the understanding of the proper context for sex. Which is strange because his support for the còntinuing ban on SSM, seemed to be based, at least in part, on this.

          But I still think that overall it is a balanced article.

          • Anton

            And if you ask what it is balanced between…?!

          • CliveM

            Youre as bad as Albert in nit picking over individual words :0) If it makes you happier, we can use the terms reasonable or fair.

          • Anton

            It’s a serious question, Clive. How can there be a balance between gospel truth and rampant heresy? I was hoping to get you to ask that question yourself.

          • CliveM

            Anton balanced doesn’t mean mid point. I found it a fair summation of marriage and why SSM is incompatible with it. He also did it in a tone that was moderate.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Blessed are the peace makers.

            Bless you.

          • He’s separating same sex acts from Christian marriage, Clive. He can agree marriage is ordained by God as exclusively between a man and a woman. However, at the same time, he’s endorsing same sex activities as acceptable to Christians within civil relationships that stop short of Church “weddings”.

          • CliveM

            I did say that part was muddle headed.

            It is curious to me, that he is unable or unwilling to take the logic of his stand on SSM to its logical conclusion.

          • It’s tactical. Surface agreement and sub-text opposition. Cunning.

          • carl jacobs

            I agree. At the center of marriage is its exclusive dominion over sex. Any argument which breaks that dominion – be it ever so orthodox in sound – is just a deceptive word game.

          • Jack has been trained in cognitive behavioral therapy.

          • CliveM

            I suspect a number of Priests already conduct blessing services. As this has no legal status, it would all slip under the radar and is probably deliberately not ‘noticed’ by the Bishop.

            Not that i agree with this. In fairness to the auther he is being open as to where he wants this to go.

  • Anton

    God’s will is discerned via scripture, not the votes of men.

    • Hi

      I’m guessing you are stating your reply to me on your own independent evangelical church doctrine? We are talking about the c of e here, so it would be the votes of men and women. You know there’s even gays and lesbians on the synod ?

      It seems to me that in the c of e e , God’s will is clearly decided by the General Synod, if Parliament then agrees . Hence they voted for women’s vicars and maybe now gay marriages in church.

      • Anton

        Please tell me whether you believe that God”s will is discerned via scripture or democratic vote. Then we can get on to discussing what goes on in the CoE.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          Steady on.

        • Hi

          My belief on who and how God’s will is discernible is not germane to this discussion as we are discussing the Church of England.

          Obviously Anglicans do give credence to a democratic vote or they wouldn’t have a synod in the first place. My understanding is that Anglicans use Tradition, Scripture and Reason to decide their religious matters and the forum to decipher them is the General Synod. The General Synod votes and with a two thirds majority you can have women Priests or Gay marriage.

          • Anton

            Not meant discourteously, but I’ll leave discussing the Church of England to you.

            NB I took the suggestion of a referendum to be serious but obviously not the name you gave it!

          • Silly serious of questions, Anton. You do know Hannah is an Orthodox Jew?

          • Anton

            Yes, but she’s said more than that about herself here. I consider that her lifestyle is in contradiction to Orthodox Judaism in the same way that lifestyle is in contradiction to the gospel, so it would not have surprised me to find inconsistencies in what she was saying. As I’m not a representative of Judaism, however, I wasn’t going to tell her what she ‘should’ do. I’m willing to apologise if you can show me I was discourteous to her.

          • You just need to lighten up and stop being so intense.

          • Anton

            Not today. Unapologetically. Today matters. Even though I’m not Anglican, today matters.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Know any scabrous jokes about the Papacy and its claims Jack? As you say, we all need to lighten up.

          • The Pope arrives in heaven, where St. Peter awaites him. St. Peter asks who he is.

            The Pope: “I am the pope.”

            St. Peter: “Who? There’s no such name in my book.”

            The Pope: “I’m the representative of God on Earth.”

            St .Peter: “Does God have a representative? He didn’t tell me …”

            The Pope: “But I am the leader of the Catholic Church …”

            St. Peter: “The Catholic church … Never heard of it … Wait, I’ll check with the boss.”

            St. Peter walks away through Heaven’s Gate to talk with God.

            St. Peter: “There’s a dude standing outside who claims he’s your representative on earth.”

            God: “I don’t have a representative on earth, not that I know of … Wait, I’ll ask Jesus.” (yells for Jesus)

            Jesus: “Yes father, what’s up?”

            God and St. Peter explain the situation.

            Jesus: “Wait, I’ll go outside and have a little chat with that fellow.”

            Ten minutes pass and Jesus re-enters the room laughing out loud. After a few minutes St. Peter asks Jesus why he’s laughing.

            Jesus: “Remember that fishing club we started 2000 years ago? It still exists!”

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Now that I like…

          • IrishNeanderthal

            A poem by Heinz Erhardt, translated:

            Pope Paul (IV) died four hundred years ago
            and then, as usual, went to heaven.
            And when he was well up there,
            he took the golden key.
            It is well known in old times and now
            That every pope has a key to heaven.
            But see, the key did not fit.
            But Peter let him come in anyway
            and said (his face was beard-encircled):
            “Luther, namely, has changed the lock …!”

          • Hi

            here’s an ecumenical one:

            Several centuries ago, the Pope decreed that all the Jews had to convert to Catholicism or leave Italy.

            There was a huge outcry from the Jewish community, so the Pope offered a deal: he’d have a religious debate with the leader of the Jewish community. If the Jews
            won, they could stay in Italy; if the Pope won, they’d have to convert or leave.

            The Jewish people met and picked an aged and wise rabbi to represent them in the debate. However, as the rabbi spoke no Italian, and the Pope spoke no Yiddish or Ladino, they agreed that it would be a ‘silent’ debate.

            On the chosen day the Pope and rabbi sat opposite each other.
            The Pope raised his hand and showed three fingers.
            The rabbi looked back and raised one finger.

            Next, the Pope waved his finger around his head.
            The rabbi pointed to the ground where he sat.

            The Pope brought out a communion wafer and a chalice of wine.
            The rabbi pulled out an apple.

            With that, the Pope stood up and declared himself beaten and said that the rabbi was too clever. The Jews could stay in Italy .

            Later the Cardinals met with the Pope and asked him what had happened.

            The Pope said, “First I held up three fingers to represent the Trinity.

            He responded by holding up a single finger to remind me there is still only one God common to both our faiths.

            Then, I waved my finger around my head to show him that God was all around us.

            The rabbi responded by pointing to the ground to show that God was also right here with us.

            I pulled out the wine and host to show that through the perfect sacrifice Jesus has atoned for our sins, but the rabbi pulled out an apple to remind me of the original sin. He bested me at every move and I could not continue.”

            Meanwhile, the Jewish community gathered to ask the rabbi how he’d won.

            “I haven’t a clue,” said the rabbi. “First, he told me that we had three days to get out of Italy, so I gave him the finger.

            Then he tells me that the whole country would be cleared of Jews but I told him emphatically that we were staying right here.”
            “And then what?” asked a woman.
            “Who knows?” said the rabbi. “He took out his lunch, so I took out mine.”

          • The Pope met with the College of Cardinals to discuss a proposal from Shimon Peres, the former leader of Israel.

            “Your holiness,” said one of the Cardinals, “Mr. Peres wants to determine whether Jews or Catholics are superior, by challenging you to a golf match.”

            The Pope was greatly disturbed, as he had never held a golf club in his life.

            “Not to worry,” said the Cardinal, “We’ll call America and talk to Jack Nicklaus. We’ll make him a Cardinal, he can play Shimon Peres … We can’t lose!”
            Everyone agreed it was a good idea. The call was made and, of course, Jack was honored and agreed to play.

            The day after the match, Nicklaus reported to the Vatican to inform the Pope of his success in the match. “I came in second, your Holiness,” said Nicklaus.

            “Second?!” exclaimed the surprised Pope. “You came in second to Shimon Peres?!”

            “No,” said Nicklaus, “second to Rabbi Tiger Woods.”

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Hi

            Forgive me for interjecting.

            Would it be possible for you and Happy Jack to put all these together in a book for publication?

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            We had a vicar who had a huge store of hilarious clerical jokes and a great ability to tell them.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            What’s interesting about Hannah’s anecdotes is that they are contemporary. Preachers (and proto-preachers) up and down the the scale – are looking for such material. At the moment it doesn’t exist within the market.

            I have no doubt that Happy Jack’s and Hannah’s material is being copied and pasted into private files – for use in establishing a rapport between preacher and audience.

          • Anton

            In the pub after the service, I hope. The idea that a sermon must open with a joke makes me cringe. What on earth do Muslims make of it? At least theirs is a reverent religion.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Mainly, but humour can be useful to break the ice if lots of non regulars are at a service.

          • Anton

            That makes it worse. They think we have no confidence in our own faith or ability to hold an audience if we have to start with a joke. Scripture (the precedent of Jesus’ sermons) and 2000 years of church tradition are against this practice. Hang on, that sounds familiar on this thread…

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Brilliant!

          • *Facepalm*

          • Hi

            The headline of the blog post is about the Church of England…

          • Anton

            And the church rests on the scriptures…

          • Actually, it rests on Christ and on His visible Church and its Apostolic succession.

          • Anton

            Christ is the corner stone. You just gave me some advice about lightening up, so here’s some for you: stop pretending not to know what other people mean.

          • Hi

            Maybe to you. But the Anglicans say differently .

            This is what their official website says :

            “Anglicans uphold the Catholic and Apostolic faith. Following the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Churches are committed to the proclamation of the good news of the Gospel to the whole creation. In practice this is based on the revelation contained in Holy Scripture and the Catholic creeds, and is interpreted in light of Christian tradition, scholarship, reason and experience.”

            https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/being-an-anglican/anglican.aspx

          • Anton

            Good for them.

          • Most excellent points, Hannah.

          • It was not so in the beginning.
            Article XXI of the C of E
            General Councils may not be gathered together without the commandment & will of Princes. And when they be gathered together (forasmuch as they be an assembly of men, whereof not all be governed with the Spirit and Word of God) they may err, and sometimes have erred, even in things pertaining to God. Wherefore things ordained by them as necessary to salvation have neither strength nor authority unless it may be declared that they be taken out of holy Scripture.

  • CliveM

    Im assuming your tongue is firmly stuck in your cheek when you made this suggestion.

  • Hi

    My subsequent replies are seriously meant, tho.

  • carl jacobs

    The best outcome today would for the Synod to reject the report. Why? Because division must needs come. That which heightens the contradiction and increases the strain will hasten the inevitable. The CoE is going to bless homosexual relationships in the very near future. It cannot be stopped. The sooner people face that reality, the better.

  • 1642+5thMonarchy

    Another thing that cheered me on this issue was on BBC R5 today when a ghey cleric protesting outside the Synod said that the CoE is becoming less tolerant of gheys and more conservative on this issue than when he was ordained 20 years ago. I was cheering in the car at that point, but not in agreement with the impostor. I pray that the high water mark of liberalism in the CoE may be passing.

    • Don’t be deceived. This is a simple display of “victimhood” intended to elicit “empathy” and “compassion” and keep the debate emotional rather than rational.

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        I know that Jack, but they are saying they’re losing, not winning, and that’s good news.

        • But they don’t actually mean what they’re saying.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            You’re not saying that they’re liars as well?

          • “Victims” play on one’s heartstrings. Manipulative is the word.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Shock! Horror!

            They thought they’d won and had a nasty shock, couched in gentle and vague CoE hierarchy language of course. But it’s still a major defeat and perhaps the signs of a change in the tide.

            You should be pleased Jack or were you really hoping the perves would win for the damage it would cause?

          • Of course Jack is pleased.

            Ever successful liberal assault on the Church of England results in serious damage to the Christian message and, indirectly, weakens the Catholic Church in England.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Profound insight.

          • HedgehogFive

            That is why this Huguenot Hedgehog finds himself much more often defending, rather than attacking, the Church of Rome.

          • Jack trusts you mean the Roman Catholic Church, the largest Christian church, with more than 1.27 billion members worldwide. We wouldn’t all fit into the diocese of Rome.

          • HedgehogFive

            Well, RCC then, to save my paws. But Human Jack, you do become a bit annoying at times.

          • At times?

  • Anton

    I took the suggestion of a referendum to be serious but not its name.

  • 1642+5thMonarchy

    Perhaps the CoE can have its very own Ghey Exodus? If the Bishop of Buckingham can arrange for a supernatural parting of the Thames I might be more sympathetic to the truth of his theological twistings, assuming his flock can then subsist on divinely supplied poppers in the wilderness of south London for forty years?

  • Shadrach Fire

    Contemporary society fashions and views have nothing to do with the Gospel. This whole issue seems simply; are same sex relations sinful or not? Those who assert that they also are made in God’s image and therefore seek to express themselves in god are those of a contemporary stance. Should this also apply to wife beaters, kleptomaniacs and serial killers? Life styles are just that, life styles, and need to be brought into subjection of the flesh. Sin needs to be brought into the light so that the sinner can repent and turn from their ways.

  • Sarky

    I’m obviously no expert on church matters, however, it seems to me that both sides cannot coexist.
    The only way the CofE can survive imo,
    Is for it to split, let the traditionalists go one way and the liberals go the other.
    Let the public them decide which branch survives by bums on seats.
    Trying to fit square pegs in round holes will never work.

    • Anton

      The problem is that both sides want to be the *Established* church.

      • len

        Established is becoming to mean ‘alternative’ in many ways

      • Sarky

        Let them slug it out then.

    • len

      Sound advice Sarky.
      This logic seems to have escaped the C of E upper echelons.

    • carl jacobs

      This has never been about coexistence. This has always been about managing the transition from one to the other with as little damage to the organization as possible.

  • TIME to CTRL ALT & DEL

    Sorry your grace – this is not about homosexuality and same-sex marriage. It is about the authority of Scripture – a battle that is as old as the church. This is just the latest episode.

    • “It is about the authority of Scripture – a battle that is as old as the church … “

      No, the battle is and has always been about who has the authority to interpret scripture and God’s word.

      • Anton

        You mean who goes about telling others that they may not.

        • carl jacobs

          Ironic thing is … the RCC doesn’t actually interpret Scripture. It promulgates dogma. There are only about six infallibly interpreted verses and they mostly deal with the authority of the Pope.

          Great work if you can get it.

          • Now you know that’s just not true.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            And unfair. Some of the RCC’s interpretation may be right (most), some wrong, some self-serving, but it does interpret as its long history of theologians, both great and terrible, demonstrates. It is it’s claim to sole true interpretation to which I cannot assent.

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        The Holy Spirit acting through the human mind and soul?

        • len

          Spot on. Go straight to the Author of scripture.

        • Then why does he tell different people so many different things?

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Perhaps some who think he is talking to them are in error?

          • Well “some” are undoubtedly wrong.

      • TIME to CTRL ALT & DEL

        2 Peter 3
        16 As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
        17 Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.
        18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.

      • William Lewis

        No one is claiming sole authority to interpret scripture here. That’s your bag.

        • There you go then. If no one has authority to definitively settle matters the end result must be endless compromise or division.

          • William Lewis

            Oh ye of little faith.

          • They said as the Titanic sank …..

          • William Lewis

            The Titanic sank with everyone in full agreement over who had the authority to run the ship.

          • len

            Jesus Christ has ALL authority..

          • Well of course He does. However, in His absence, and until His return, He has entrusted the “Keys” to His Church and given her authority to “loose and bind”.

          • len

            ‘ The Church ‘ doesn`t appear in scripture don`t you know?.

  • GayEntry, more like. A backdoor move, if ever there was one.

    • carl jacobs

      Jack!

      • Mea culpa.
        Blame that Chef of Sinners.

        • carl jacobs

          He’s a hopeless reprobate. There is still hope for you.

    • LOL! Naughty , but wickedly amusing.

  • len

    Perhaps the established church has finished its course and now is redundant.?
    Many things seem to happen in cycles and perhaps ‘the Church wheel’ has turned full circle and is back where it first started?.Those few believers who hold to the true Gospel are now in the same position as the disciples and risk persecution if they dare speak Gospel truth.
    The established Church bumps along pleasing everybody but is fit for nothing other than social gatherings and to put ‘a stamp of approval ‘on what the liberal apostate church deems as’ fit and proper in its own eyes.’

  • IrishNeanderthal

    Hello Hannah,

    I am reminded of this article from 2003:

    Primates ‘at war’ over gay marriages – Telegraph

    Guess what I’m imagining?

  • IrishNeanderthal

    Been looking at Exodus with some friends, and most recently came across this:

    20:26 And you shall not go up by steps to my altar, that your nakedness be not exposed on it.

    This is located very soon after the Ten Commandments, and therefore seems much more fundamental than anything to do with same-sex behaviour found in Leviticus. Why do they allow a statue by Antony Gormley in Winchester Cathedral? That man seems to worship his own body.

    If I were Cromwell, I would give them twelve hours to remove it, or the cathedral would be slighted (that’s what Cromwell did to castles to stop them ever being used again as fortifications.)

  • The Explorer

    The lamb was too hot to eat.

    1. Give three possible interpretations.

    2. Is there any way of determining which interpretation is correct?

    • Is there an objective measure of how “hot” it is and what the correct temperature ought to be? If not, then it’s all down to personal taste and inclination.

      Best left to master chef to determine.

      • The Explorer

        You’ve addressed point 2 (and very well!) but not point 1.

        • Pubcrawler

          Perhaps some phrase structure diagrams might help him.

          • The Explorer

            Good boy!

          • Pubcrawler

            Nice to know my postgraduate degree in Linguistics hasn’t gone to waste 🙂

    • The Explorer

      The Inspector will donate a bottle of his best whisky to the first person to give three interpretations.

      (The Inspector doesn’t know this yet, but will be so pleased when he reads about his donation.)

      • dannybhoy

        Make sure he hands over the Albanian single malt ’18…

    • 1642+5thMonarchy

      1. The lamb’s appetite was spoilt by the heatwave.
      2. The diner found the lamb too over heated to put in his mouth.
      3. The diner found the lamb so over spiced that he couldn’t eat it.

      • The Explorer

        Congratulations, the Inspector owes you a bottle.

        As the sentence stands, all three are equally valid. But add the context of the next sentence – So it lay under the shade of a tree – and one is correct and the other two are not.

        • But how about if the sentence preceding was “It had planned to dine at twelve?” Then “it” no longer refers to the lamb, but to some unknown entity and the second option is still valid, though the third less so if not impossible. 🙂

          • And then of course one has to assume that the whole problem is not a mistranslation in the first place, where the word “hot” could have meant something completely different, depending on context 🙂

          • The Explorer

            Yes, good point. Translation carries all sorts of problems of its own. Fortunate that there is so much parallelism in the Bible

          • A stray Welshman may have had lustful designs on the lamb and preferred its “company” to killing it for food.

          • The Explorer

            Very good. I asked for three, and we now have six.
            1 Spicy
            2, straight from oven
            3 too much sun
            4 stolen (Sister T)
            5. Good looking (Sarky)
            6. Sexually desirable if you’re Welsh (HJ)

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Perhaps the choice of interpretation would give a psychologist some clues about the personalities of the persons proffering them?

          • Pubcrawler

            A French farmer may have objected to its being imported and set fire to it.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            You will be collecting the prize from the Inspector won’t you?

          • The Explorer

            He’s currently gone into hiding.

          • CliveM

            You’ll be lucky! Two years ago, because he’s banned from the Pink News message boards, against a promise of a pint, I left a message for him.

            Still waiting payment!

            IG I mean.

    • 1. Spicy, straight from the oven, stolen.

      2. Chemical analysis of chilli content, meat thermometer, provenance of lamb from field to table.

      (does this get the whisky?) 🙂

      • The Explorer

        Very good, but 1642 just beat you to it.

        • Pipped at the post 🙂

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            You may have the whisky Sister.

            My cup runneth over sufficiently, but please pray for my Mum.

          • Will happily add your mother to my prayers, whisky or no whisky 🙂

        • 1642+5thMonarchy

          Yay!

        • Sarky

          It was too good looking?

  • The Explorer

    Nice one.

  • 1642+5thMonarchy

    Presumably both Jews are economsts?

  • HedgehogFive

    Regarding the header picture, no more rainbows, please.

    In Nazi Germany, one was obliged to fly the Swastika flag. Non-conformity was met with much more serious action than was generally meted out by the Anglican Establishment to their brand of Nonconformists in England a few centuries earlier.

    Seeing how many institutions feel obliged to fly the rainbow flag these days, one might occasionally think of it, in Brighton especially, as the “rainbow swastika”.

    • Anton

      That’s the title of a fine book about (against) the New Age movement by an Orthodox Jewess, Hannah Newman. I think it can be read online.

    • Dominic Stockford

      The rainbow is yet another symbol/idea stolen from Christians/Jews by those who seek to undermine the true faith. God gave us the rainbow, to show his tolerance.

      • Albert

        I thought the whole rainbow thing was just to show diversity.

        • Inspector General

          If you had any sense about you, you’d realise the thing is about as paedophilic as it’s possible to get…

          • Albert

            I really cannot see how that argument works.

          • Inspector General

            Right over your head, isn’t it…

          • Albert

            Or under it…

          • Inspector General

            Give me strength…

            The rainbow is beloved by children. The rainbow flag was stolen by gays. The children now see the flag as something good and something gay. Ergo. The children are now gay friendly.

          • Albert

            Yes I can follow all that without reaching your conclusion.

          • Inspector General

            You really ought to join the dots up once in a while…

          • The rainbow flag, commonly the gay pride flag and LGBT pride flag, is a symbol of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) pride and LGBT social movements … The colors reflect the diversity of the LGBT community, and the flag is often used as a symbol of gay pride when it comes to LGBT rights marches. It originated in Northern California, but is now used worldwide …

            The rainbow flag has found wide application on all manner of products including jewelry, clothing and other personal items and the rainbow flag colors are routinely used as a show of LGBT identity and solidarity. The rainbow colors have become so ubiquitously recognized as a symbol of LGBT pride and identity in recent years that they have effectively replaced most other LGBT symbols, including the Greek letter lambda and the pink triangle.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rainbow_flag_(LGBT_movement)#Rainbow_colors_as_symbol_of_LGBT_pride

  • Anton

    The ‘gay Christian’ movement demonstrating outside Synod wants the Bishop’s report rejected:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-38982013

    The debate is this evening.

    The same BBC item shows bishops who compiled the document in effect apologising for the Bible.

  • Sarky

    One thing i don’t get. If the bible is the word of god, why didn’t god make it black and white and not so open to interpretation?
    Would solve alot of your problems.

    • ChaucerChronicle

      It is ‘closed’ to interpretation as verses, throughout its length, breadth and height, are cross-referencing and thus counter-checking. That takes study. Not something for you who is content with nibbiling on morsels thrown at your paws.

      • Sarky

        Fair enough. But isnt that just a study of an interpretation of an interpretation of an interpretation………

        • Sarky

          P.s. what about the nativity?? Different in the different books, doesnt counter check at all.

          • Anton

            Please quote what you believe to be a specific incompatibility between Luke’s and Matthew’s accounts.

          • Sarky
          • Albert

            What a fascinating website. I’m not sure of his logic though:

            So… why did I make errancy.org at all? The answer’s simple: “It didn’t exist, so I had to create it.”

          • Sarky

            Just makes me laugh that people like CC, who use their alleged superior knowledge of the bible to bash people, seem to have no knowledge of obvious contradictions.

          • Anton

            Sarky, I have a book called Alleged Discrepancies of the Bible by John W. Haley. We can throw books at each other pointlessly. I am asking you to provide one contradiction, quoting chapters and verses, and explain in your own words why you believe it is a contradiction. Then I’ll do my best to explain in my own words why I believe it’s not.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          To discover the answer, to that my friend, you need to be born again.

          How can a man re-enter the ‘womb’?

          Ha, ha, ha!

          • Sarky

            I forgot. Its all just nonsense unless you’re part of the club .

          • ChaucerChronicle

            To the outsider it’s non-sense.

            To enter; one must first search for the entrance.

          • Sarky

            How old are you?? 12 ??

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Sarky – come home – I know you’re hurt over the separation.

          • Sarky

            I’m really not.

    • len

      Pure water flowing through contaminated filters, Sarky.

      • Sarky

        Still makes no sense.
        Why would god allow his word to be contaminated to the point its a confusing mess.

        • len

          It is sin that contaminates.Sin has permeated all aspects of life on this planet.
          That is why Jesus had to be born uncontaminated from sin in order to affect Gods rescue plan for humanity.
          Gods Word is super natural that is why so many cannot understand it.Gods Word is on an entirely different level from ours.Gods Word speaks of another reality, of another dimension.
          When men get hold of Gods Word and attempt to tell us’ what God means’ they put their own ‘spin’ on it and can so easily contaminate the Word.
          On of the hardest things to do is to read Gods Word with no prejudices or pre- judging’ what God meant to say.’ but to read the scriptures and to let the scriptures speak to you.

    • Maalaistollo

      I think you’ll find that (in any matter other than the most simple) language is always open to interpretation. Just ask any lawyer.

  • Holger

    What the fake archbishop doesn’t understand is that percentages make no difference when a group has decided it will no longer put up with unjust and unequal treatment.

    Sexual orientation is the defining issue of our time because the LGBT community has decided it should be so, just as the African American community decided that civil rights should be the defining issue of the 1960s.

    When minorities rise up and say “No more!”, majorities have no choice but to listen. Your only alternative is to exterminate us, which when it comes to the LGBT community, is hardly feasible. We’re your children, after all. You make us who we are, whether by nature or nurture. So we’ll be with you forever. And if we refuse to let you continue to treat us as second class citizens, there’s nothing you can do about it.

    The Church will split over this issue because there’s no other possible outcome. Gays will no longer accept second class status and homophobes will never accord us equality. There’s no middle way because the two positions are mutually exclusive.

    The panicky “why can’t we all just get along?” statements coming from the homophobes are no more than a last ditch attempt to plug holes in the hull of the Titanic. The ship is going down and all that will remain are a few leaky lifeboats bobbing about at the mercy of wind and wave. That’s the future of your church and I have to say that as I watch its immense and unwieldy bulk sink beneath the waves and the crew and passengers rush about on deck in panic and disarray, I can’t help but feel that justice is being done.

    • len

      The point here is not what we think but what God thinks. I can define myself in any way that I like but it will not in any way at all change how God thinks of me.
      The Church can ‘approve’ of anything it wants to, but if it doesn`t line up with Gods Word its meaningless.
      The church is becoming part of the problem not the part of the solution,but God is not phased, He will carry on working through a remnant of believers as He has always done.
      The church is rising in a mighty way in Communist and Islamic Countries as these failed ideologies fail to deliver the Utopia that they promised.

      ‘All is vanity’….as the preacher said.

      • David

        Amen to that.

    • Anton

      You have said you are not a Christian so what’s it to you, other than another transparent attempt at wind-up?

      • Holger

        I applaud the demise of all homophobic organisations.

        To have destroyed the former power and prestige of the Church to to point at which it’s now in the process of breaking apart is no mean feat for a small, hitherto powerless minority. We’ve come a very long way in a very short time. I think we can and should be justifiably proud of ourselves.

        • Anton

          Absurd to suggest that the gay movement has done anything of the sort. Feminism has been far more corrosive. Enlightenment secularism too. And even then, all it has done is break the political power of the church and cause it to return to its roots as a movement of grace rather than law. So, thank you for the reminder.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          ‘I applaud the demise of all homophobic organisations.’

          Freudian projection.

    • ChaucerChronicle

      ‘Sexual orientation is the defining issue of our time because the LGBT community has decided it should be so, just as the African American community decided that civil rights should be the defining issue of the 1960s.’

      My dear, Holger: there is no moral equivalence bewteen race and repetitive, rythmyic, rear entry.

      • Holger

        Hurl all the abuse you like, it won’t save your Church.

        • Albert

          Ignoring the intemperate expression, the underlying idea is surely correct. Whatever one thinks of homosexual relationships, it is a category mistake to think that a relationship is on the same moral level as the colour of one’s skin. The equivalence, if there is one, is between skin colour and sexual orientation.

          • Holger

            Skin colour is innate. So is sexual orientation.

          • Albert

            Precisely, which is why they are equivalent moral categories. Behaviour is in a different moral category. It is the confusion of the innate vs behaviour categories that is the problem in many discussions of homosexuality.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          Why, Holger, aren’t black human beings permitted to throw the homosexual off their shoulders?

    • The Explorer

      “We’re your children,” Quite true. Gays can’t (as yet) come from gays so they have to come from heteros. Heteros don’t set out to create them; they just happen In each generation, a small percentage will be gay in what seems a fairly consistent ratio.

      Why this should be so is a question for God or Nature, depending on one’s perspective.

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        There is a theory around that it has become a little more common since the early sixties and the legalisation of the Pill, which has contaminated drinking water with oestrogen. The impact of these female hormones on river fish has been noted by scientists with far more gender disorders than used to be observed.

        Who knows, Holger may be the result of a careless chemical mishap and should deserve our sympathy, if not our endless indulgence?

    • Albert

      When minorities rise up and say “No more!”, majorities have no choice but to listen.

      May I ask why you think that is so? Minorities are, almost by definition, less powerful than majorities. So the question arises as to why minorities should be listened to? Where has the assumption come from that they should?

      • Holger

        Observation tells me it is so.

        African Americans have never formed a majority in the US. Yet they managed to assert themselves in the face of immense opposition to win equal rights.

        All it takes is a cause that is manifestly just. When enough members of the majority that has been oppressing you realise the injustice of their actions, shame and remorse will get you what you want.

        To a large degree the LGBT community has achieved its goal of equal treatment under the law. The only hold-out is religion, or at least parts of certain religions.

        They’re on a losing wicket however. Just as churches that preach the inferiority of blacks (i.e. “separate development or apartheid”) are seen as unacceptable and offensive in today’s society, so those that preach the inferiority of gays (i.e. “objective disorder”) will seem offensive and outrageous to the society of tomorrow. Indeed they already do to many. Research indicates that “Christian” is understood as a synonym for “homophobe” among a majority of under-15s (Barna Group, 2011). And they are your (our, everybody’s) tomorrow. And you’ve basically lost them.

        Minorities effect change by challenging the prejudices of the majority and shaming it into reform. Such is the secret of the LGBT community’s success. And such is the glaringly obvious reason why the Church is doomed to decline and failure.

        • Albert

          All it takes is a cause that is manifestly just.

          It’s the manifestness that interests me. Aristotle took it as obvious that slave were simply living tools. Everyone understood that only some people counted in society. It was manifestly just that the family acted as a unit – under a patriarchal head – to detriment of individuals. Where have our ideas of the value of individual and equality come from? The problem with your post is that it assumes these things are obvious. But history shows otherwise. Why the change?

          • Holger

            What is manifest to us in this time and place may not be manifest to other people at other times and in other places.

            History, legends and stories can give me a more or less accurate idea of what other people have believed, but I am not them, nor are they me. I am not bound by their beliefs any more than future generations will be bound by mine.

            A thousand years ago Christian morality approved of slaughtering infidels. Five hundred years ago it approved of slaughtering heretics. Even as little as a couple of generations ago, it approved of imprisoning single mothers, using them as forced labour and selling their children to the highest bidder. None of these things would be considered moral by Christians of today. So much for the immutability of Christian morals.

            What I believe to be manifestly true is influenced by the world and the time in which I live. As conditions change, beliefs will change with them. But all that concerns me is the here and now. And in the here and now the consensus of opinion that I share rejects discrimination against the LGBT community as unjust. I will fight for that idea against those who oppose it, not because of some spurious notion that my opinion is universal and immutable. But rather because out of all the opinions I’ve heard, it’s the most convincing and rational. The Christian position of punishing gays by pressuring them to make living sacrifices of themselves to a putative and entirely invisible spirit-being who appears to delight in making people suffer for no discernable reason seems entirely irrational and unjustifiable to me.

          • Linus, has your head ever spun around 360 degrees?

          • Albert

            I disagree with your historical examples and I think you misuse the word “morality”. But yes, there are examples of poor Christian behaviour. The point is that they are poor when measured against some kind of absolute standard. Now here’s an interesting sentence:

            And in the here and now the consensus of opinion that I share rejects discrimination against the LGBT community as unjust.

            Where is your idea of justice coming from? Is it absolute or culturally relative? It looks like you think it is culturally relative. If so, an interesting question arises: where did the idea come from culturally? But then you say:

            But rather because out of all the opinions I’ve heard, it’s the most convincing and rational.

            Which rather sounds like an absolutist position, in which case again, I am bound to ask what makes it convincing and rational?

        • ChaucerChronicle

          ‘When enough members of the majority that has been oppressing you realise the injustice of their actions, shame and remorse will get you what you want.’

          We have no shame nor guilt in protecting our children from the homosexual and ‘gender’ confusion.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          ‘Research indicates that “Christian” is understood as a synonym for “homophobe” among a majority of under-15s (Barna Group, 2011). And they are your (our, everybody’s) tomorrow.’

          They become tomorrow’s social conservatives, as they begin to understand the nihilism of homosexuality.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          ‘Minorities effect change by challenging the prejudices of the majority and shaming it into reform.’

          What happens when the majority has no conscience? After all, the majority is not Christian.

        • The Explorer

          “Minorities effect change by challenging the prejudices of the majority and shaming it into reform.”

          Not necessarily. Whereas in the past the sex act was for pleasure and procreation, a significant proportion of the modern majority has decided that it is just for pleasure. Indefinite child-free sex, courtesy of the pill and abortion, weakens the argument against child-free homosexual sex. If the one is permissible, so must the other be.

          Thus a significant proportion of the modern majority supports homosexuality for reinforcing its own beliefs about the purpose of sex. That is what underlies the tolerance shown by the majority.

      • Sarky

        Erm, you’re a minority, why should we listen to you?

        • Albert

          I’m not saying minorities shouldn’t be listened to. I am asking why it is that we think it is right to listen to minorities. How did this cultural change come about? What beliefs does it rest on or entail? Do you have any ideas?

          • Sarky

            Dont think it has anything to do with belief, but everything to do with fairness. Our society has become alot more tolerant and part of that tolerence is giving a voice to people who didn’t perviously have one. People who were once on the sidelines are now not afraid to ask for the things we take for granted.
            In my opinion id rather live in a society where people no longer have to live in the shadows or in secret.

          • Albert

            Fairness? Fairness implies equality. So why have we got this idea of equality? Where has it come from?

          • carl jacobs

            Fairness does not imply equality. Fairness is inherently subjective and self-referenced. The most accurate definition of fairness I have ever seen is “I like it”.

          • Liberté, égalité, fraternité …..

          • Albert

            When someone says X is not fair, their assumption is that there is some kind of equality in play that demands something be fair. If I give less food to one of my children, they will (rightly) say it is not fair. If I give less food to my dog, there is no argument that I am being unfair, since my dog is not equal to my children.

            Now if we go back to the original point, the idea that minorities (or anyone) should be treated fairly, assumes that they are equal. But, sorry to say, one of least convincing documents in the history of politics is your declaration of independence:

            We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal

            It is plainly not self-evident. Prima facie, it is not even true. It was not held by the ancients. All the evidence is against it. Where then, did the idea come from? It’s no good arguing, as Sarky did:

            Dont think it has anything to do with belief, but everything to do with fairness.

            for fairness implies the very thing he is supposed to be defending: equality. So he is arguing in a circle.

          • Sarky

            Probably from your lot, with all that love they neighbour nonsense.

          • Albert

            I think that’s exactly right (although I’m intrigued to think you believe “love thy neighbour” is nonsense – without that belief the LGBT would not have got very far) . You don’t have to be a Christian to see it. In contrast to ancient worldviews, Christianity provided the doctrine of equality by teaching: we are all made in the image of God, Christ died for us all, we are all, equally going to face judgement for our own actions etc.

            Take all that away and what are you left with? We hold this truth to be self-evident, that men are not created equal.

            And this is the problem that I have with positions like yours. You spend all your time attacking the position that lies at the foundation of your own. But look at the 20th Century and you will see how easily, once Christianity is removed, the idea of equality disappears once it has ceased to be useful. The assumption that that won’t happen in the future, even the near future is naive.

    • Dominic Stockford

      “Your only alternative is to exterminate us”

      You know that is utter tosh, you know it. The simple response is to say that we find no place for active homosexuals in the membership of our congregations. Come and listen to the Gospel all you like, but we won’t let you change the rules/laws of Christ’s Church, because God set them – nor will we allow you to have positions where you can.

      • Holger

        Go ahead and preach a gospel of apartheid. Not only will you drive all gay people away, you’ll also lose the support of anyone with a basic sense of justice and fair play.

        One by one, all denominations will split in two on the rock of sexual orientation. The larger pro-gay segments will fade away into agnostic then atheist rationality, just like the American Episcopalians. And the smaller anti-gay segments will huddle together in siege mentality attracting a few new members from homophobic immigrant communities until they too start to fade away as natural attrition eats away at their numbers.

        In a few decades Christianity will be a fringe cult of no more significance than Wiccans or the Jedi.

        May the Force be with you while you manage your decline and fall as best you can.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          Blacks reject you; they want you off their backs and away from their children.

        • Dominic Stockford

          Anti-gay? No, that’s far too narrow an interpretation of the position of true Christians. We’re anti-sin and pro-Christ.

          By the way have fun when the muslims come, they allow Christians to pay a tax to continue living, they’ll give homosexuals no such opportunity.

          • Holger

            That’s right – justify your homophobia by pointing to even worse homophobes and telling us we’ll be better off under your thumb than theirs.

            It’s a false choice. There’s no reason for us to be under anyone’s thumb. You’re all just extremist cults lurking about on the fringes of society trying (and failing) to exert control over a population that barely knows you exist.

            Shout away about doomsday and divine judgment. Try to scare us with Muslim bogeymen. You convince nobody with your accusations, calumnies and dire warnings. Those who know about you dismiss you as unbalanced religious obsessives. Indifference is the ultimate victory of reason over superstition.

          • Dominic Stockford

            I don’t hate homosexuals as individuals – there is no point. Rather, as the Church of England liturgy points out, I follow God’s teaching: “ALMIGHTY God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who desireth not the death of a sinner, but rather that he may turn from his wickedness, and live…”

            And, you know that the truth of Islam and their actions towards homosexuals is rather more frightening than simply being told ‘we believe you are wrong’.

          • Holger

            Why would the position of Islam about anything worry me? I don’t live in a Muslim country. Sharia law is not in effect where I live and it never will be.

            Muslims are just bogeymen you trot out to frighten people with when you’ve run out of rational ideas and arguments, aren’t they? “Obey me or the Muslims will get you!”

            I’m not afraid of Muslims and I’m certainly not afraid of you. The fact that you have to resort to such paltry and transparent scare tactics just renders you even more ridiculous and contemptible in my estimation. I thought my opinion of you and your arguments couldn’t go any lower, but you keep surprising me by the depths of absurdity you’re willing to sink to. What next? Curses and imprecations and calls for the devil and his minions to come and get me?

            *Sigh* Like that’ll scare me into obeying you…

          • Dominic Stockford

            I have no interest in whether ‘I’ frighten you or not. And everyone across the globe should be concerned about what the Islamification process is going to mean for them, including you. However, the real deal is this:

            A fool says in his heart ‘there is no God’.
            Praise the LORD! How blessed is the man who fears the LORD, Who greatly delights in His commandments.
            For we must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.
            Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

    • len

      “That ain’t no sinking ship. that’s a submarine” look its coming back up again!. Looks a bit different after’ its baptism’ in the water.Slimmer, fitter and a lot more use than the rusting hulk it was before.

      I am sure that God looks down at those who attempt to thwart His Plans and laughs.

      • Holger

        Neither a ship nor a submarine can stay afloat once a massive great hole has been punched through its hull.

        Just ask the crew of the Kursk.

        • len

          Funny you should mention that .I have recently been to see the U534 which sunk during the war but has been recovered and now stands on the dock in the Wirral.

          ‘Sunk things’ sometimes come back.

          • Holger

            Yes, ‘sunk things’ do sometimes come back. To be bunged museums for people to gawp at when it’s raining outside and there’s nothing else to do.

          • len

            ‘Educational’ I think was the word you were grasping for.

          • Anton

            Saw that 5 years ago; are the insides of it open to the public yet?

          • len

            yes, its all on display now

        • ChaucerChronicle

          Recommend that article for Pravda.

    • Royinsouthwest

      “The defining issue of our time.” What a load of self-indulgent nonsense! I’m glad my parents’ generation only had trivial issues like the Great Depression of the 1930s and the Second World War to bother about.

    • Happy Jack has a suggestion. Sing this song three times a day:

      Give me joy in my heart, keep me praising,
      Give me joy in my heart, I pray;
      Give me joy in my heart, keep me praising,
      Keep me praising till the break of day.

      Sing hosanna, sing hosanna,
      Sing hosanna to the King of kings.
      Sing hosanna, sing hosanna,
      Sing hosanna to the King.

      Give me peace in my heart, keep me loving,
      Give me peace in my heart, I pray;
      Give me peace in my heart, keep me loving,
      Keep me loving till the break of day.

      Sing hosanna, sing hosanna ….

      Give me love in my heart, keep me serving,
      Give me love in my heart, I pray;
      Give me love in my heart, keep me serving,
      Keep me serving till the break of day.

      Sing hosanna, sing hosanna ….

      Lose the bitterness and hate; let joy, peace and love into your heart.

      • Albert

        Not with that song…:-)

        • Need to keep it simple and positive …..

      • len

        Don`t think Holger does’ happy’.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          Are you mad as well? We have and invader. You will fight.

          • len

            Look, the very worst thing to do is to take Holger seriously.He is our tame troll don`t scare him off…..

        • He’s a tormented soul.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Then stick him in the van for the asylum. Will you please stop smiling at me

          • Grouchy Jack

            Feck off then.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            What?

          • Father Jack

            Drink. Drink.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            What? Who are you?

          • Dominic Stockford

            He no longer exists. Interesting.

          • Father Jack

            They lie in wait like wolves, the smell of blood in their nostrils. Waiting, interminably waiting, and then…

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Bloomin’ ‘eck we’ve got ’em comin’ out the broom cupboard

          • Dominic Stockford

            Unlike the rest of us no information comes up after clicking on the user-name. Something seriously dodgy there.

        • ChaucerChronicle

          Happy?

          I’ve just keeld over.

      • ChaucerChronicle

        Jack, we’re in the middle of a battle. What the blazes do you mean by singing out?

        Will you please stop it and seize your bayonet.

        • How about this:

          • ChaucerChronicle

            No Jack, please no. War, Jack, war, now.

          • A word from Father Jack:

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Jack are you going mad? He, Holger, wants us terminated and you’re you’re doing this , why?

          • [Pointing at the various items he is naming]
            Father Jack Hackett: ” Chair… curtains… floor…”
            [Points at Linus]
            Father Jack Hackett: ” Gobshite! “
            He’s not worth the effort.

        • Grouchy Jack

          Oi. Let’s keep Jack’s bayonet out of this.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            Who are you? Why do you speak abour Jack in the third person?

      • Holger

        And I have a suggestion for “Happy Jack”. Singing this song three times a day might help you overcome your morbid obsession with this god of yours

        Howdy Ho!
        The Virgin Mary was sleeping
        When Angel Gabriel appeared.
        He said, “you are to be the virgin mother,”
        And Mary thought that was weird.

        Mary said, “I’m not a virgin
        I **** a guy last year”
        But then, Gabriel said to Mary,
        “My child, have no fear…

        Itching to find the rest of the words? Google South Park and have the scales lifted from your eyes…

        • Royinsouthwest

          If you don’t want to follow up Happy Jack’s suggestion of singing then perhaps you would consider thinking about something uplifting.

          Finally … whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.”

          Philippians 4:8

      • Royinsouthwest

        Actually Jack, and I hope you won’t take this the wrong way, you are not only a good Catholic, you are a good Evangelical too!

        • All Christians are called to evangelise, Roy.

          • Anton

            All Christians are called to evangelise Roy?

          • Notice the punctuation mark, Anton?

          • Anton

            My name is not Mark Antony.

          • William Lewis

            *gasp*

    • Inspector General

      As a Scottish colleague would put it “we wun tonight, and ye didnee”

      • Holger

        The synod rejected the bishops’ report. That’s a win for my position, not yours.

        Granted it’s not much of a win as it was merely an advisory vote. But the bishops are on notice that a majority of those who represent the membership of the Church of England do not support their strategy for dealing with same-sex relationships.

        A Church where the leadership is openly disavowed by the membership is in trouble. Turbulent days ahead for the CofE.

  • ChaucerChronicle

    Ah Holger!

    Just when His children; Jew, Protestant and Catholic were eating bread, sipping red wine, exchanging apples and rejoicing with much merriment: a horse-fly ascends from the pit of Beelzebub’s dung.

    • betteroffoutofit

      Ah, the Lord of the Flies — As I recall, his creatures also frequent corpses and idols, and they can exploit the Falling Sickness.

      • ChaucerChronicle

        Stop meditating and stick the bayonet in him

  • John

    Very interested in tonight’s debate. I cannot help thinking that this may be my last full day in Anglican orders before presenting my resignation to the bishop. I hear the new Lidl down the road are hiring…

    • Dominic Stockford

      There may well be opportunities to serve the Gospel elsewhere. If you are good reformed man there are many independent congregations desperate for a sound preacher.

    • Albert

      That sounds very uncomfortable. I will say a prayer for you.

    • Inspector General

      Look, old chap, you hang on in there for the time being. The fact that you want to leave Anglican orders shows you to be the right sort of fellow they need. If it all goes against us, consider defying your bishop and writing to tell him so, not abandoning your flock.

    • len

      What the Church needs now are a few good men to stop the rot. If that fails one must take orders from above.

      • Dominic Stockford

        The trouble is the faithful in the CofE simply haven’t succeeded in stopping the rot. And on issue after issue the Bible-changers have swept the board. This is simply the latest issue. There HAS to be a line in the sand which, when crossed, will mean faithful Christians will leave. If not now, when? If not this, what? The doctrine has been destroyed, the discipline discarded, the Gospel blasphemed. Gavin Ashenden pretty much said it himself, there is no way back for the CofE.

        • len

          Then one must pray and follow wherever that leads.IMO that’s the only course to take.

          • Dominic Stockford

            I will claim no great foresight – but I was brought to that conclusion many years back. I could not stay within a CofE that taught one thing and did another. Matters have got no better.

    • God bless you, John, for your faithfulness.
      There are opportunities within the free churches for a good man. Go to the FIEC website (www.fiec.org.uk), and maybe drop an e-mail to one or others of the directors.

    • IrishNeanderthal

      “Nowadays we worship at Saint Tesco.” (Pam Ayres)

  • Inspector General

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-38982013
    And here we are. With a picture from Reuters accompanying the BBC report. A most displeasing show, appears to be African asylum seekers thanking the host country by trying to change it. Still, it’s something to do to pass the time between benefit days. Oh look, we are reminded we are bigots before them. All that hate too, by synod, of course. That’s the new position we find ourselves in today. If you say NO to the progressives, you are showing hate. I say, in the background, not an archbishop there, but an archbender. The Archbender of London himself, no less, if one is not mistaken. How grand he looks, in a queer sort of way.

    Above that, another picture, by AFP this time. A plain unattractive woman, a lesbian perhaps. Seems to be trying to say that she wants to be a Christian on her terms, not Christ’s. Oh bless! The placard she’s holding! It’s full of pretty, well, childish colours, and those hearts adorning it. Adorable, madam!

    • Dominic Stockford

      We, as a family, were, how shall I put it, less than impressed by those viewed in the report, or by their less than accurate placards.

  • Inspector General

    Len, who is much more lucid these days (anyone else noticed?) has come out with this.

    ”Perhaps the established church has finished its course and now is redundant.?”

    Not quite, but it is drifting. Subject to the wind of change and the currents of social so-called progress. What is redundant, or damn well near it, is the church leadership. There seems to be only one course left to traditionalists if the current gay takeover succeeds. That would be ceding from it, on an individual parish level. So, enter the dawn of the “Anglican Independent” church. A conveniently short way of saying The Archbishop of Canterbury, his offices and agents hath no jurisdiction over this church and parish.

    These churches would occupy the same ground as the Congregationalists. Free from an interfering parliament, and removed from a poisoned episcopal structure overtaken by feminists, humanists, homosexualists and other queer things…

    It would be the most English of schism, don’t you think?

    • Royinsouthwest

      I would prefer it if the believers would take over the Church of England but if they cannot do that it would be better for the faithful congregations to declare independence from the corrupt hierarchy as you suggested.

  • Inspector General

    Here’s the Pink News take on the subject. ‘Minor reforms’ they see it as…
    ——————-
    LGBT Christians protest Church of England as bishops discuss minor reforms
    http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/02/15/lgbt-christians-protest-church-of-england-as-bishops-discuss-minor-reforms/
    ——————-
    So, what do you think is their main gripe? Oh, that’s an easy one…

    “The Gay and Lesbian Christiam Movement says the current recommendations are an “almost complete betrayal of the trust that has been placed in” Church leadership and that “not an inch has been given to support LGBTI+ inclusion” despite years of discussions.

    It appears that ‘years of discussions’ are in itself sufficient belt to win the day. Or so they thought. It is obvious that a broken sex drive is not the only issue churchy gays have. The rest of their brain doesn’t fire on all 4 either, apparently…

    Don’t bother with reader’s comments. There is one as an Inspector types this, from Mr Angela, and any more will be just as vile. Of that you can be assured.

    Warning to fellows. Whatever you do, DO NOT post your wisdom there. You will be considered a hurtful hateful homophobic bigot and blocked for your trouble and you may receive something you could really do without.

    • Dominic Stockford

      You re right Inspector – there is no need to go into a strip joint to know that it is wrong, and those there are sinning. Neither is there any need to enter that particular cauldron of unpleasantess.

    • The Explorer

      You owe 1642 a bottle of whisky. If you look lower down the thread, you’ll see why.

      • Inspector General

        Marvellous news…

        • The Explorer

          He certainly thinks so.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            A Single malt 18 year old Talisker as I gave my last bottle to a very poorly neighbour to cheer him up, please!

          • Anton

            Whatever he gives you it will be a single malt, rest assured. He and I had a discussion about these matters a couple of years ago.

    • 1642+5thMonarchy

      One is honoured to be so counted IG.

  • dannybhoy

    “And homosexuality is not an issue worthy of schism: it is simply not of the order of the sort of debate that used to divide the Church: the divinity of Christ, for example, or the nature of his humanity – the great controversy at the Council of Nicæa in AD325 – or even over liturgy or the transforming nature of infant baptism. The issue of homosexuality affects only a tiny minority of Christians: it is of distinctly secondary, even peripheral, scriptural importance.”
    I largely agree and I think it would be far better if we could return to the days of “Don’t ask – Don’t tell.”
    After all we don’t go around on a Sunday morning asking who has a problem with masturbation or pornography do we?
    If these things are being done or even openly flaunted we humbly kick them out until they come to repentance.
    In my mother’s church there was a bloke who we thought of as ‘effeminate.’
    He sang in a falsetto
    His gestures were feminine, he lived with his mother.
    Some people in the congregation sniggered, but to my mind they shouldn’t have
    He was a genuine fellow and we used to invite him to our house for tea on a Sunday.
    He never made it an issue, and neither should we.
    Only if there is open sin in the Church should we deal with it, Otherwise as HG says it’s been made a much bigger issue than it needs to be.

    • Albert

      After all we don’t go around on a Sunday morning asking who has a problem with masturbation or pornography do we?

      But if there is clear teaching against such things, and pressure groups wish to change those teachings, then that would be entirely different. Besides, these things are not usually quite so public and so the scandal to others (in the proper sense of the word “scandal”) is not so great.

      • dannybhoy

        Am I denying it?
        Not at all. What I’m getting at is that just as when I’m at church or leading the home group I’m not consciously wondering what people are up to in their private lives, so if a man or woman struggling with their sexuality is in the congregation I’m quite happy not to know, unless they make it an issue. And if they do, if they confide in me I will want to counsel them, if they want to flaunt it or berate us for not accepting gay relationships, then we would have to ask them to leave..
        I don’t think every gay person is wanting to make an issue of it.

        • Albert

          I think you’re absolutely right. But that’s why there is pastoral ministry as well as simple teaching. The two are not the same, but pastoral ministry must surely follow teaching, not the other way around.

          • dannybhoy

            We agree.

          • Albert

            That’s one of the oddest things about blog posts like this one: we all end up agreeing! 🙂

          • dannybhoy

            I think you’re absolutely right.

    • len

      Someone else has said this ..but…this issue is not about’ homosexuality’ but about the integrity of the Word of God.
      If you want to destroy a building the best way to go about this is to destroy the foundations.The foundations are the integrity of the Word. So you question the integrity. Did God really say?.The rest is the history of the separation of man from God.No trust, no faith,separation.

      • dannybhoy

        I’m not talking about the gay activistas, I’m talking about gay people who want to know God and struggle with their sexual orientation. They come to church to find answers, not to change the Church.

        • As Happy Jack posted a few days ago, homosexuals are a diverse group.

          Some accept Christian teaching, do not identify as “gay” and live according to God’s laws. Others want Christian teaching to change to accept them and want the Church’s endorsement. Then there’ll be a group in the middle who are confused, ambivalent and possibly angry about their orientation and who find it a great trial to live chastely.

          It’s the group in the middle who are being let down by the Church of England.

          • dannybhoy

            Well said Jack,and that’s where I’m at. A man who intellectually chooses to serve God whilst his emotions yearn after his own sex is in torment. He deserves our compassion, respect even, and our prayers our fellowship and support in his struggles.
            He doesn’t deserve our condemnation.

          • grutchyngfysch

            Why is the other side of this never adequately expressed? Imagine that you experience an attraction you know to be wrong and struggle valiantly with temptation, often quietly, daily, with the help of the Holy Spirit.

            We are quick to identify the tension from those who would as soon cast such a fellow out (and rightly so). But what of the serpents who tirelessly tell the same fellow “it’s not a sin” (aka your moral convictions are faulty), “just give in” (aka celibacy and chastity are neither desirable nor achievable), or “there’s nothing wrong with you” (aka the spiritual battle you are experiencing is all in your imagination; you are needlessly tormenting yourself).

            These are the wolves the Scriptures warned us about: who counsel the denial of conscience, of Scripture, and blasphemously glorify sin in the name of the One who died to bear the just wrath of God for the same. They are not fellow brethren, they are not of us: they are the sons of perdition.

          • Cressida de Nova

            Yes. I think I have already expressed this view somewhere in this post. I guess Jack has developed some empathy towards the gay dilemma since his reply to me ‘we can be in this world but not of this world. ‘

            Not so easy when you are reassured everyday that gaydom is a perfectly normal and natural situation and one should celebrate encourage and be proud of it.

            Homosexuality reminds me of the C of E. Men dressing up and pretending to be priests and bishops ,a pastiche, a sham…and not unlike men dressing up as women,having surgical mutilations and getting married to other men.

            The power of secular satanic society is unassailable without a strong religious foundation. Good to hear someone talking sense. Welcome back Belfast. It is you isn’t it?

          • grutchyngfysch

            Hi Cressida, (yes it’s me). It’s a side of things that is rarely expressed or explored in any great depth. There are only two broad positions that get covered: angry or even obsessive denunciation to a degree not levied on other sinners, or creeping flattery where people talk about how stunning or awesome it all is and if only we could all find a way to politely ignore the clear condemnation of Scripture.

            So many empty words. I am grateful that when asked about a similarly thorny issue (divorce and remarriage); our Lord have clear and unequivocal answers even though those assembled didn’t much like them.

            You can’t follow Jesus and walk in the opposite direction.

          • len

            There is none perfect on this planet but we must not try to make scripture fit our fallen condition.Quite the reverse in fact.

        • len

          This is a lot bigger than that Danny, this is about making the church conform to’ the world.’
          Its being done in a devious way.

    • IanCad

      All well and good Danny, that is if we were not dealing with a perversion that is, to its very boots, hell-bent on proselytising its unhealthful and disgusting creed among all our institutions, and even worse, our children.

      I’m pretty much a live and let live sort of chap but it is time for pushback. We are not dealing with poor, oppressed homosexuals/lesbians, we are facing a major assault upon all that is pure, good and decent.

      • dannybhoy

        I think where I differ with some of my Christian brothers here, is that I truly believe some people are (for whatever reason) attracted to their own sex.
        Now I think that is wrong,
        God made man and woman only; but I don’t believe these people are being deceitful, nor choosing to be gay, they just find themselves attracted to their own sex.
        Some I think have ‘learned’ to be gay. a weak father, a dominant mother, whatever.
        But I have met enough people attracted to their own sex to believe they didn’t choose it.
        They are not usually the ones trying to change Scripture or Church teaching,

        • CliveM

          I agre DB, who would choose the ‘joys’ of some sweaty hairy guy, over that of a woman!! Couldn’t do it.

          • dannybhoy

            Danny as a young man had his first experience of being an object of homosexual
            desire whilst in the process of signing on as crew of an oil tanker.
            The very ordinary chap complete with specs and slicked back hair told me he couldn’t sign on because he fancied me and he knew I wasn’t gay.
            He was married with children.
            I believe there is a spiritual ‘force’ active in some homosexuals but I don’t believe in all homosexuals..

          • Sarky

            Unless its a sweaty hairy woman.

          • CliveM

            And then suddenly celibacy would become the option of choice.

        • IanCad

          I don’t think we have a disagreement Danny. My concern is the promotion of such behavior, in our schools, our police forces, the BBC, the CofE, and in our Parliament.

    • Dominic Stockford

      WHY did he never make it an issue? Because he knew that it was unacceptable behaviour for a church-goer, let alone a Christian. The game has now changed, it is now claimed that it is perfectly fine for Christians. I would go so far as to say some even think it necessary.

      • dannybhoy

        I ‘m not sure he was even aware of it (this was the late ’60s and homosexuality wasn’t much thought about). It is indeed the sexualisation of society, and we know that this drags us lower, not higher, not more liberated but into more bondage.

  • Anton

    Dear God

    We are presently voting on the question of gay relationships. Once we have voted we shall tell you what we have concluded for your approval. Thank you.

    Yours faithlessly
    General Synod
    Church of England

    • Dominic Stockford

      Screwtape is apparently dead – he died laughing when he heard this was to be debated!

  • Demon Teddy Bear

    Pretty silly post. If the church decides morality doesn’t matter then frankly it’s no church at all.

    • Dominic Stockford

      You’re right. Put succinctly. No-one else has quite put it so boldly!

    • Albert

      Thank you. That’s kind of what I was trying to say!

    • Royinsouthwest

      Actually the trouble makers agree that morality matters but they think that things can only be moral if they are politically correct. They want to jettison, or at least redefine, anything that does not fit their definitions.

  • Inspector General

    Just in

    The Church of England

    “Conservative hold”

    • Dominic Stockford

      Can’t see how?!

      “Members of the Church of England’s ruling body have voted NOT to “take note” of a controversial report on homosexuality and same-sex marriage.
      The report by the House of Bishops upheld views that marriage in church should only be between a man and a woman, and services should not be held to bless same-sex relationships.
      The motion was defeated by the House of Clergy, following hours of debate.
      The House of Bishops had voted overwhelmingly (43-1) in favour.
      The House of Laity voted 106-83 in favour of the report, while the House of Clergy rejected it by 100 votes to 93.
      Bishops will now have to produce a new report on the issue.
      The decision was welcomed by LGBT rights campaigners, some of whom had staged a protest ahead of the debate.
      Lucy Gorman, an activist and Synod member from York said: “Thank you Synod. With that vote we’ve sent a message to the outside world.”

      • Inspector General

        Didn’t say the fire was out….

        • Dominic Stockford

          Thou speaketh in riddles, sir.

          • Inspector General

            Anyway, everybody has won tonight. The Anglican liturgy will not be polluted and the aggrieved benders seem happy enough after it…

          • Albert

            Well there’s a level of nuance I hadn’t spotted.

      • chiaramonti

        And what is the message that has been sent? Out goes the pretence that the “Bishops” are the successors of the Apostles, unless they all claim descent from Judas Iscariot. Although they voted 43 -1 to “note” their own report (was it Buckingham dissenting?) the language they used afterwards is hardly in accordance with scripture. So it is inevitable that the alternative report they will now have to produce will not be grounded in scripture. They’ll have to give on something to preserve “unity.”

        • Anton

          Your comment about Judas is an early contender for Comment of the Year. Thank you.

          • Doesn’t beat the alliteration and brevity of: “Bugger the bickering bishops.”.
            One can now rephrase that to: “Bickering bishops buggered”.

  • Dominic Stockford

    Welby is quoted as saying after the vote: “It was right that this needs to be about love joy and celebration of our humanity, of our belonging to Christ, all of us without exception, without exclusion.”

    So he too plays fast and loose with the Scriptures, which place clear limits on what constitutes being a Christian. What is more, it should be about what God teaches, not some ‘celebration of our humanity’.

  • Albert

    So here are the voting figures (from Premier):

    General Synod had been asked to take note of the report and in a close vote on Wednesday evening 100 clergy, 83 laity and 1 bishop refused.

    But 93 clergy, 106 laity and 43 bishops voted for the motion. To have passed it would have needed a two thirds majority in each sector.

    Now what’s striking about this is not just that the vote failed, but also that it failed by so much. Most of the clergy voted against the motion.

    The other thing that has always struct me as being odd is the idea that any homosexual person is really waiting for votes to go their way before jumping into bed with a same-sex partner.

    • Don’t be so sure. Read these Alternative case studies provided by OneBodyOneFaith here:

      http://www.thinkinganglicans.org.uk/

      • Albert

        Don’t be so sure about what, Jack?

        • ” … the idea that any homosexual person is really waiting for votes to go their way before jumping into bed with a same-sex partner.”

          Some clearly are – notably those that are conflicted about the acceptability of acting on the orientation and the clear scriptural opposition to this.

          As I do not think there are many among bishops that will be saved, but many more that perish … . The loss of one soul carries with it a penalty which no language can represent. For if the salvation of that soul was of such value that the Son of God became Man and suffered so much, think how sore a punishment must its loss it bring! And if in this present life he who is cause of another’s destruction is worthy of death, how much more in the next world! Do not tell me that the priest is at fault, or the deacon. The guilt of all these comes perforce upon the head of those who ordained them.

          http://www.symeon-anthony.info/onBishops/ChrysostomOnBishops.html

          • Albert

            Some clearly are – notably those that are conflicted about the acceptability of acting on the orientation and the clear scriptural opposition to this.

            Well that’s pretty bonkers. Why would someone think the General Synod is an authority on all this?

          • Because Anglicans believe the Holy Spirit works through Synod and its processes discern the will of God?

          • dannybhoy

            “Because Anglicans believe the Holy Spirit works through Synod and its processes discern the will of God?”
            They do?
            I thought they just prayed that He might. Personally I don’t see how the Holy Spirit will dwell amongst those who don’t even believe.

          • Notice the question mark?

          • dannybhoy

            Oh yes..

    • chiaramonti

      So what are Church of England Bishops for? If they assert (as they do) that they are the successors of the apostles, they are charged with laying down doctrine,not the clergy or the laity. If they can be outmanoeuvred by the other two houses, they may as well jack the whole thing in rather than engage in all this talk of love, humanity etc. etc. etc. Weasel words do not a doctrine make!

      • Albert

        The CofE claims to be ‘Episcopally Led and Synodically Governed’. What does that mean in practice?

        • Martin

          Albert

          It means the wolves are at the door.

          • Albert

            Well they must be very sleepy wolves because they’ve been there quite some time.

          • Martin

            Albert

            They’re happily working their way through the sheep, secure in the knowledge that there is no shepherd to come along and chase them off. Indeed, they are starting to breed within the fold.

          • Albert

            It helps the wolf to do that, if he is dressed as a sheep!

          • Martin

            Albert

            I don’t think they bother anymore.

          • Martin

            Albert

            They’re overfed.

    • None of the above

      “To have passed it would have needed a two thirds majority in each sector.”

      No, a simple majority would have sufficed. This wasn’t Article 8 business (like the women bishops’ legislation), which requires the supermajority in each House.

      • Albert

        Gosh. It gets more and more surprising.

  • Maalaistollo

    So is it now the middle-ranking clergy who represent the out of touch liberal elite, with the bishops and the laity donning the mantle of the deplorables?

    • chefofsinners

      The middle rankers represent nothing except themselves. They lack the ability to be the elite and the humility to be the laity.

  • Albert

    From the report in the Telegraph:

    Jay Greene, from Winchester, who is in a civil partnership, said congregation members want the Church to go “further, faster, forward”.

    She said many knew gay people who wanted to have their partnerships celebrated by the Church and they were “deeply disappointed by this report” and its “tone of fear”.

    “They want you to find an accommodation as you did over the remarriage of divorcees, and over women priests,” she said.

    Quite.

    • Darter Noster

      And with Amoris Laetitia we’ve made a good start on exactly the same path.

      • Albert

        I do hope not, but I think there is quite a mess there too, which under normal circumstances would not have been created by the Pope but would have been settled by him. I’m beginning to think Francis actually wants to leave the decision to his successor.

        • Darter Noster

          Actually, the bit that really chills me to the bone is the Franciscan desire to devolve decision-making on these issues down to local bishops. That is carte blanche for liberal bishops to “interpret” these matters in any way they want, thus throwing away in an instant 2000 years of Catholicity – something I cannot believe Francis does not know.

          I’m a former Anglican; I watched this slow-motion car crash happen in the Anglican communion, to the point at which it became senseless even to pretend that we were all in the same Church. Anglicanism and the Church of England has turned itself into a cluster-f*** with exactly the same lack of central leadership, with local authority used as an excuse to let liberal bishops and clergy do whatever they want in their own territories and an abandonment of any core standards of doctrine and praxis.

          • Hold your nerve, that man. There’s plenty of resistance to AL and to its ambiguities and confusion.

          • Albert

            To AL?

          • Amoris Laetitia

          • Albert

            Of course, I’m sorry. P.S. in your comment to DN you are beginning to sound like the Inspector.

          • God help Jack, then.

          • Inspector General

            Rather!

          • Albert

            But there are two differences now compared with where we once were: the next pope can simply use his authority to sort it out. I sometimes think that cradle Catholics play with fire because they have never been burnt. Dissatisfaction with the present situation is widespread so it is unlikely that the next conclave and pope will not be wanting to sort it out.

            The other thing is that they are not making new doctrine, just (mis?)interpreting old doctrine. Everyone says that they uphold Church teaching on divorce. The issue, as I understand it, is the subjective state before God, the old idea that mortal sin requires more than grave matter. Now it may well be confused to apply it to divorce and sex etc., but it is the same doctrine.

          • Dominic Stockford

            I think you mean, ‘a failure to impose Biblical discipline’

    • Royinsouthwest

      “Further, faster, forward”.

      If the Gadarene swine had a motto that would be it!

      • Albert

        That made me laugh!

        • dannybhoy

          Anything that cracks your face has to be funny…

    • … and contraception … and abortion … and soon it’ll be euthanasia.

      • Albert

        Effectively, if people shout loud enough the CofE changes its teaching.

        • But it’s all in the name of “compassion” and “love”, Albert. Orthodox Christians are so …………

      • Anton

        2 out of 3 Jack, and if anybody wants to see a debate about contraception they should look down the thread.

        • Pope Paul VI made four rather general “prophecies” about what would happen if the Church’s teaching on contraception were ignored.

          – Infidelity and moral decline
          The Pope noted that the widespread use of contraception would “lead to conjugal infidelity and the general lowering of morality.” There has been a widespread decline in morality, especially sexual morality, in the last 40 years. The increase in the number of divorces, abortion, our-of-wedlock pregnancies, and venereal diseases shows that sexual morality is not the strong suit of our age.

          Contraception has made sexual activity a much more popular option that it was when the fear of pregnancy deterred a great number of young men and women from engaging in premarital sex. The availability of contraception has led them to believe that they can engage in premarital sexual activity “responsibly.”

          – Lost Respect for Women
          Paul VI also argued that “the man” will lose respect for “the woman” and “no longer (care) for her physical and psychological equilibrium” and will come to “the point of considering her as a mere instrument of selfish enjoyment and no longer as his respected and beloved companion.” The Pope realised that the Church’s teaching on contraception is designed to protect the good of conjugal love. When spouses violate this good, they do not act in accord with their innate dignity and thus they endanger their own happiness. Treating their bodies as mechanical instruments to be manipulated for their own purposes, they risk treating each other as objects of pleasure.

          – Abuse of Power
          Paul VI observed that the widespread acceptance of contraception would place a “dangerous weapon… in the hands of those public authorities who take no heed of moral exigencies.” The history of the family-planning programs in the Third World is a sobering testimony to this reality. In Third World countries many people undergo sterilization unaware of what they are doing. The forced abortion program in China shows the stark extreme toward which governments will take population programs. Moreover, few people are willing to recognize the growing evidence that many parts of the world face not overpopulation, but underpopulation. It will take years to reverse the “anti-child” mentality now entrenched in many societies.

          – Unlimited Dominion
          Pope Paul’s final warning was that contraception would lead man to think that he had unlimited dominion over his own body. Sterilisation is now the most widely used form of contraception in the U.S.; individuals are so convinced of their rights to control their own bodies that they do not hesitate to alter even their own physical make-up.

          The desire for unlimited dominion over one’s own body extends beyond contraception. The production of “test-tube babies” is another indication of the refusal to accept the body’s limitations; so too are euthanasia and the use of organs transplanted from those who are “nearly” dead. We seek to adjust the body to our desires and timetables, rather than adjusting ourselves to its needs.

          – Positive Prophecy
          In Humanae Vitae Pope Paul made some positive predictions as well. He acknowledged that spouses might have difficulty in acquiring the self-discipline necessary to practice the methods of family planning that require periodic abstinence. But he taught that self-discipline was possible, especially with the help of sacramental grace.

          …the discipline which is proper to the purity of married couples, far from harming conjugal love, rather confers on it a higher human value. It demands continual effort yet, thanks to its beneficent influence, husband and wife fully develop their personalities, being enriched with spiritual values. Such discipline bestows upon family life fruits of serenity and peace; and facilitates the solution of other problems; it favors attention for one’s partner, helps both parties to drive out selfishness, the enemy of true love, and deepens their sense of responsibility..”

          What have we seen since 1930?

          • Anton

            Perhaps you should prioritise warning about sex outside marriage over grumbling about some aspects of sex inside it.

          • The evils of rebellion against God cannot be neatly isolated in this way.

          • Anton

            Nor can they be spoken of authoritatively by a bunch of unmarried men. St Paul said that an episkopos should be a “man of one woman” so that the congregation could better relate to him.

          • The Pope was right.

          • Yes he was. May God Bless him for this his only encyclical, penned in the face of severe opposition from many of the Western bishops who encouraged their “flocks” to follow their personal consciences over Church doctrine.

    • Pubcrawler

      From Adikos Logos, a 1st-century radical Isthmian newspaper:

      Erastes, from the church of Corinth, said he knew people who wanted their sexual immorality celebrated by the Church and they were “deeply disappointed by this epistle from some bloke called Paul” and its “tone of priggish censoriousness”.

      “They want you to find an accommodation as you did over chopping the end off your willy and eating bits of pig,” he said.

    • TheDoktor

      Are, so she supports populism does she !?

      • Albert

        Of course not. Populism is a really wicked thing that sophisticated people do not fall for.

  • bluedog

    The final proof that equality trumps diversity, and that no exceptions are permitted.

    • Albert

      Liberalism is a fundamentalism. It is a jealous god and will have no other gods before it. Even God.

      • bluedog

        Correct. There can be no tolerance of any departure from the orthodoxy in thought, word or deed. Those that do transgress are blasphemers and heretics. They shall be called ‘unclean’.

        • chefofsinners

          In the first century an alternative to this kind of thinking emerged. It was called Christianity.

          • bluedog

            Perceptive as ever, CoS. Recently a UN agency released figures showing that the global population for the first time in the history of mankind was urban, and thus increasingly divorced from the natural order. Somehow it seems no coincidence that in highly developed and urbanised western societies the idea of legitimising same sex unions can take root. If you know very little of nature, the survival of the species, and indeed your own civilisation, is not a matter that concerns you. One can confidently predict that if the CoE legitimises SSM, it will become extinct within two or three generations. After all, if your congregation does not reproduce, you have no congregation! More fertile human demographics with an understanding of the natural order will inevitably replace the society that fostered the CoE if SSM is sanctified.

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Profoundly true, and perhaps why some in he COE no longer support rural churches as they have no sympathy for their values.

            I term them frontier values, people who live with the natural order, life and death every day, people who raise and live off animals, who understand that life is short, uncertain and precious, that actions have absolute consequences, and why we need a Saviour and a strong morality.

          • bluedog

            One can envisage a CoE parish in 25 years time. Baptisms are a thing of the past, the congregation is a dwindling band of elderly homosexuals, still congratulating themselves on their triumph. The Christians will be elsewhere in a parish full of vitality, laughter and hope.

          • dannybhoy

            I think they’ll either be experiencing severe persecution or with the Lord in glory..

          • 1642+5thMonarchy

            Some will simply refuse to recognise the Bishops, keep the Parochial Share, evolve new forms of ministry, absorb the shrinking rural non-conformist congregations,.. People forget that determined Churchwardens are impossible to force out by the hierarchy. A new true network faithful to the true inner Church will regrow.

          • chefofsinners

            Yes, cities throughout history have showcased the worst of humanity. Today more than ever we are in danger of losing what it means to be human.
            We look for a heavenly city where the only marriage is between Christ and the Church. I’m sure there’s a verse somewhere about who will be inside and who will be outside…

          • Pubcrawler

            Yet Christianity first took hold in the cities. Those in the country were, quite literally, pagans.

          • chefofsinners

            “And so Jesus also suffered outside the city gate to make the people holy through his own blood. Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore. For here we do not have an enduring city, but we are looking for the city that is to come.” Hebrews 13:12-14

          • Pubcrawler

            I am no fan of cities, but that is where the first churches were. And, the sick being those who need a doctor, that us where the Church is most required.

          • CliveM

            Found this from Jeremiah 3:17

            “that time Jerusalem shall be called the throne of the Lord, and all nations shall gather to it, to the presence of the Lord in Jerusalem, and they shall no more stubbornly follow their own evil heart”

            If city living is good enough for the LORD.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Martha and Mary and Lazarus lived in the country…

          • Pubcrawler

            And? Was Antioch countryside? Corinth? Smyrna? Ephesus? Alexandria? Rome?

          • Dominic Stockford

            “Those in the country were, quite literally, pagans.”

            Martha, Mary and Lazarus lived there. Is all I pointed out. And were clearly not pagans.

      • David

        Well put !

      • Manfarang

        Liberalism has no unified set of propositional beliefs. Instead, “liberalism” from the start embraced the methodologies of Enlightenment science as the basis for interpreting the Bible, life, faith and theology.

        • Albert

          Liberalism has no unified set of propositional beliefs.

          Fundamentalism does not require an agreed set of propositional beliefs. Look at Islamic fundamentalists. Secondly, I dislike the use of the word “Enlightenment”, because I think it was not always a terribly enlightening period and I think the word (like the word “Renaissance” is just designed to disparage what went before. Thirdly, I think that science as the basis for interpreting the Bible, life, faith and theology sounds good, but what it boils down to is the interpretation of the world through the prism of metaphysical naturalism. And that metaphysics is anything but enlightened.

          • Manfarang

            There is no God but Allah is a proposition but one that requires acceptance rather than agreement.

  • chefofsinners

    Putting the syn into synod…

  • Inspector General

    This is not VE day, chaps, but as Churchill would say “we can allow ourselves a bit of time to gloat”

    Cheers, lads!

  • It’s no shame the report was defeated. The “compromise” was riddled with double-speak and offered opportunities to homosexualists in the Church of England to advance their agenda.
    Bishop of Liverpool Paul Bayes, a prominent campaigner for LGBT rights, said LGBT people see “hard stones where they look for bread” in the report but nevertheless urged members to vote yes.

    Why?

    He stressed the “maximum freedom” phrase used in the document should be the focus of the debate. The bishop said he had already been in touch with legal advisors about how to seek maximum freedom for LGBT Christians within current state law. Our explanation of maximum freedom will take us to places where we have not previously gone.”

  • Inspector General

    “Dearly beloved, in place of the usual reading from scripture, I, as a gay priest, will tell you how my husband, oh look, there he is, peeking from behind the baptismal font and grinning like the wonderful Cheshire cat he is, and I express our love with God’s approval using our lower bowel”

    • Looking for another spell on the naughty step, Inspector?

      • Inspector General

        Not altogether sure you realise what gay love is all about, Jack.

        • You always succeed in lowering the tone of the discussion, Inspector. Do stop obsessing on the mechanics and depravity of male homosexual acts. You’re polluting your own mind – and this weblog.

          • Inspector General

            Christ Almighty, you have some nerve…

          • And blasphemy only compounds your sin.

          • HedgehogFive

            Veritatem, Jacobe felix, dixisti.

        • Sarky

          Are you gonna teach him?

    • dannybhoy

      You plonker Rodney…

      • Inspector General

        God bless you Danny.

        • dannybhoy

          Thank you Inspector. I receive that in the spirit it was offered…and I ask Him to bless you too.

          • ” … in the spirit it was offered”

            That’ll be whiskey.

          • Inspector General

            You do realise what the vote tonight was all about, don’t you?

          • Leaving the EU?

          • dannybhoy

            :0)

      • IanCad

        ????????

        • dannybhoy

          I said that because I thought he was being a plonker with his little homily, and if a plonker, he must be Rodney..
          (There is a certain logic to it)

          • IanCad

            I’ve heard of Rodney King, H.M.S. Rodney, The admiral himself, and a Rodney Dangerfield; but, for the life of me I can see no connection to any Rodney that could be prompted by IG’s post.

          • dannybhoy

            All will be revealed…

          • IanCad

            Ahhh! The misfortunes of never having owned a TV. Could I be considered as socially deprived?

          • dannybhoy

            Nah…
            Just culturally ignorant.

          • IanCad

            I really must attempt to broaden my horizons.

          • dannybhoy

            I’m working on broadening mine.
            New trousers soon…

  • len

    It seems the rainbow coloured torpedo missed the C of E on this occasion as she drifted aimlessly, but I expect another is being loaded frantically as we speak.

  • carl jacobs

    This is good news. It keeps up the pressure. The bishops were angling for a subtle solution of gradual change. But the Progressives would have none of it.

  • Anton

    This might have been said before (I’ve been at homegroup tonight) but does anybody know what proportion of the clergy who voted against it was ultraliberal and what proportion ultraevangelical?

    • dannybhoy

      “This might have been said before (I’ve been at homegroup tonight) ”
      Me too.
      But I don’t care about the results. I am praying for revival.

      • chefofsinners

        Keep praying. It has been 200 years since England saw revival. The time is ripe. As we see the alternatives to Christ being taken to their logical conclusions, their utter failure becomes ever more evident. The message ‘repent or perish’ sounds less alarmist and more realistic with every passing day.

        • dannybhoy

          The Israelites experienced revival through some of their kings, Josiah was one example. I enjoy reading Samuel, Kings and Chronicles.
          I don’t know how revival comes. I think Billy Graham’s ministry was anointed, and many people came to the Lord through his preaching.
          What was he preaching?
          Our sinful and rebellious state before a holy and righteous God (look away Dreadders), and that this same God loves us and wants us to be reconciled to Him on His terms.
          It just seems to me that it is through the preaching of His Word, the Scriptures, that the Holy Spirit begins a work of conviction in the heart of the hearer. It’s like a divine appointment in the midst of every day life. Men and women suddenly become aware of God and that He is speaking directly to them..

          • Paul Greenwood

            They say there are no atheists in foxholes. Perhaps survival brings faith. On the other hand The Great War brought great disillusionment and the rise of Spiritualism

          • dannybhoy

            Indeed it did, and a lot of devout or observant people have lost their faith in God because of what He seems to have allowed.
            The paradox being that they want Him to stop evil, but they don’t want Him telling them what to do…

    • 1642+5thMonarchy

      Forgot that some evangelicals were against it. Even more encouraging.

      • layreader

        If evangelicals did vote against it, they would have been of the ‘accepting’ (liberal) kind. There’s a confusion here between ‘evangelical’ as a style of church (what we used to call churchmanship), and ‘evangelical’ as a conservative theological position. They aren’t always the same thing.

        • 1642+5thMonarchy

          I read of some hardline traditionalists who voted against. It’s not clear cut at all.

    • CliveM

      I suspect it will be a while before that level of breakdown is available.

  • carl jacobs

    Pity the poor bishops. Well, no, not really. They were trapped by their own cleverness. They face the problem of reconciling what they see as two mutually-exclusive imperatives:

    1. Conform with the secular culture as befits an established church.
    2. Maintain organizational unity – especially with those who contribute money.

    Their problem of course is that a hard implementation of (1) will defeat the possibility of sustaining (2) and so cause loss of membership, influence, and especially money. So their liberal instincts are to manage the situation by talking traditional while acting progressive. They want to say all the right things to keep conservatives happy. At the same time they want to create facts on the ground that will eventually bring about the changes desired by liberals. They leave the formal doctrine intact while they change the functional doctrine – knowing full well functional doctrine is what defines the church. They thereby hope that a gradual introduction will allow everyone to get used to the idea and prevent fracture.

    But of course the Progressives will not have it. They don’t want a subtle campaign. They want affirmation and victory and they want it now. If you tell them that this would likely fracture the church they will respond “That’s a feature and not a bug.” They see concession to conservatives as pandering to evil. If liberals were honest they would admit they don’t want conservatives in the church, and will tolerate their presence only long enough to see them ejected by a foot. There is a great desire on the Left to see conservatives defeated, and to experience the joy of knowing that conservatives know they have been defeated. So progressives stood up on their hind legs and killed the bishop’s proposal. Where to now? They haven’t a clue.

    This is all to the good. The subtle campaign was always the most dangerous. It couldn’t save the church of England but it could have done grievous damage to the remnant that will survive it. This keeps up the pressure and forces the bishops to face their impossible conflict. They must be forced to choose. They will choose the culture because they desire its approval. And that will cause the necessary fracture. Liberal religion will thus be isolated and die.

    • John

      I agree. Last night’s vote makes fracture and schism on gospel/liberal lines all but inevitable. It is only a matter of time.

      • 1642+5thMonarchy

        It would be an interesting legal exercise to see if a church which has received no central support for years, has paid its own expenses, and whose congregation and leadership wishes to renounce the CoE in a heretical form and join a GAFCON linked true CoE, has in effect legal right to the buildings and premises. In any case even if not the Diocese would end up closing such church is the people left.

        • Paul Greenwood

          There is of course the legal question as to who owns cathedrals in fact. So many church buildings are held as trusts with a bishop little more than a trustee bound by a fiduciary obligation which he has no doubt over time conflated with his own administrative arrangements in breach of trust and equity.

        • John

          Correct. Virtually everyone here will go with us if we leave on a point of doctrinal principle such as this. The diocese hasn’t enough clergy to go round the churches with congregations in them, never mind those that would become empty. They’d have a white elephant on their hands, and no possible alternative use for it. Just the insurance bill. The members here have paid for upkeep, extensions etc on the church building for years, besides being a massive net donor to diocesan funds. Morally the building belongs to them. The diocese can keep the vicarage as it has always paid for its upkeep. Mrs and I will rent a flat somewhere close by if it comes to it.

        • Anton

          Do you trust the judiciary over this matter?

    • Paul Greenwood

      So an Erastian Church must meet secular mores ? Then it is no longer a Church of God but of Man. Organisational Unity ? There is no Organisational Church in The Bible but congregations or presbyters in self-governing groupings. Church buildings were built by benefactors (often with reversionary clauses) rather than the Erastian Church; even Church Schools are a misnomer since they are LEA funded with minor contributions from the Erastian Church and no control over entry.

      If the Erastian Church wishes to celebrate gay rituals or slaughter lambs on the altar or read Koranic verses it does so as a non-Christian Assembly. It has driven out men >50 the very ones likely to provide financial support and bass voices. It is a feminised assortment which drives out thinking and reflective individuals in favour of sentimentalism and mawkishness.

  • The Explorer

    The ancient Scandinavians saw the dew, and thought it was the Earth mourning the death of Balder. We now know that dew is to do with condensation. What was truth then is not true now.

    On the other hand, the ancient Scandinavians thought murder was wrong and we still do now. Time has not changed something morally wrong into something morally right.

    Scientific knowledge and moral knowledge do not evolve in the same way. The great liberal sleight of hand is to pretend that they do.

    • dannybhoy

      Well put.

    • IrishNeanderthal

      Edwyn Bevan called equating the two processes “anthropological intimidation”.

  • Graham Wood

    How long halt ye between two opinions? Asked Elijah of Israel.

  • Hi

    The thing is the proposal was probably doomed the moment two Bishops publicly apologised for their own pamphlet. If you don’t really believe in putting your name to it , then don’t. But then it made me think that this is all about the fact it is a state church with the trappings of monarchy and state power , the pompous glorious ceremony , so it is about keeping the show- for that’s what this is – on the road for as long as possible. If the church of England was simply the Anglican church of England and had no bishops in the parliament and wasn’t the established church, then how much clamouring would there be for ssm in church?

    • Anton

      Probably quite a bit because what matters to people in the parish is that the local vicar marry them in the ancient church building down the road.

      Whether that *should* matter to them isn’t the point, for now; the fact is that it does.

      • Hi

        One of the speakers in the synod debate yesterday hinted at the attempted compromise to keep things together: just as marrying a divorcee is at the discretion of the local vicar , so could gay marriage….

    • CliveM

      When I got married in my wife’s local CofE (I refused to marry in the miserable Gospel Hall she was attending at the time) because of changes in the law as to where civil ceremonies could take place (country houses, hotels etc), the Vicar admitted that Church weddings had taken a big hit. It’s interesting that at a time fewer and fewer people are having Church weddings, this should be such a big issue.

      I think a lot of is is about its status that causes this pressure.

      • dannybhoy

        People always seek meaning, recognition and being in the mainstream Clive.
        Others of us, the true, rugged stand alone individualists, love those Gospel Halls… ;0)

    • dannybhoy

      Exactly.
      It is that relationship to State and Monarchy that gives the Church of England more publicity than it really deserves.
      So we practicing Christians are in the same place as the righteous and devout Jews who all through your history have lamented corruption in the Jewish faith. We value the Church of England despite its failings. We want it to properly represent the Christian faith, and that faith is built first and foremost on the holy Scriptures. Some churches add in tradition or church authority, but essentially it is the Scriptures, and we – both Jew and Christian tamper or change them at our peril.
      What we can do is study to see where for example some things are related to cultural issues, or political issues, and whether we can adapt these differences to our own life and times without losing or trespassing the obvious meaning. I think both Christians and Jews have done this down through the centuries, a process of adaptation. What we can’t however do is change or adapt God’s clear morality, the morality He gives us not to make us unhappy, but to make us more fully human as God intended.
      That letter from the rabbi you shared shows the passion and longing of the devout man for God and His law.

  • Hi

    Whilst I was on my work out yesterday , I managed to listen to about an hour of the debate on the live stream. I have to say there wasn’t much reference to scriptures, tradition, reasoning or anything the Anglicans refer to in how they formulate doctrines. It felt ephemeral.

    The debate -if it can be called that- was really a series of people standing up and stating they were gay, they must be loved and therefore be able to marry in church. Those in support could only counter with a mantra like statement ” marriage is between a man and woman”. Others seemed to argue that the church move with the times and they were the “national” church (a smug arrogant conceit) .

    I managed an hour of this repetition , then switched to the one show…

    • IrishNeanderthal

      Hannah,

      I was just reading on your most recent post

      However the Talmud continues that the halachah follow the school of the lenient Hillel, even though Shammai was stricter. This was because the students of Hillel do three things: first, they are pleasant people; second they are humble; and third they work to fully understand Shammai’s arguments and present them before their own reasoning.

      It seems to me that not only the Anglican hierarchy, but almost the definition of Englishness, has taken the attitude “you must be nice to people” to the extreme, in a sense overdoing the first bit of what Hillel’s students do, while allowing the other two to go right out the window.

      This is a long term problem. With the third point in mind, here is G.K.Chesterton, from The Uses of Diversity (1920)

      Our real error in such a case is that we do not know or care about the creed itself, from which a people’s customs, good or bad, will necessarily flow. We talk much about “respecting” this or that person’s religion; but the way to respect a religion is to treat it as a religion: to ask what are its tenets and what are their consequences. But modern tolerance is deafer than intolerance. The old religious authorities, at least, defined a heresy before they condemned it, and read a book before they burned it. But we are always saying to a Mormon or a Moslem —” Never mind about your religion, come to my arms.” To which he naturally replies —” But I do mind about my religion, and I advise you to mind your eye.”

      • Hi

        There’s a difference between Talmudic leniency and Anglican liberalism and while I can see it is easy conflate the two, they are two different concepts.

        The modern day distinction between the Ashkenazic and Sephardic approaches to halakha is not one of Christian conservatism verses liberalism , as both Ashkenazi Orthodox and Sephardim believe that as a historical fact the written and oral Torah was given by God at Sina to Moses and the Jewish people and that we have an eternally binding and unbreakable covenant with God, plus both accept the positions of the other as being valid and authentic Jewish Orthodox halakha.

        It is just that the Ashkenazim tended toward the quality of “gevurah,” strength. They viewed halakhic stringencies as a positive expression of love of God. The stricter the demands of halakha, the more self-sacrifice and devotion are entailed in fulfilling the commandments.

        In contrast, the Sephardim tended toward the quality of “hessed,” compassion. We view halakha as a loving means of serving God. Whereas Ashkenazim veered toward halakhic stringency, Sephardim tilted toward halakhic leniency. As Rabbi Ovidia Yosef (no liberal by any stretch) said: “The Sephardic rabbis are of the school of Hillel, tending toward hessed, and they do not have stringencies; they walk on the ‘king’s highway.’ However, Ashkenazic rabbis tend toward gevurah, and are from the school of Shammai who were strict.”

        I think you glanced at that with the hairy biker discussion and as to whether one can add water to food during Shabbat . Ashkenazi say no cold water, but boiling water is permissible. Sephardi say no cold or hot water, but if you move the food into another pot, you can add cold or hot water .

        I like this quote from the Maharal

        “what we call ‘Halakha’ is called ‘Halakha,’ because one who walks walks in straightness and does not tend from the straight and equal path at all, not to the right and not to the left; and this is the quality of Beit Hillel, that they had this quality in all of their conduct – they wouldn’t stray from equilibrium because they were centered.”(Netivot Olam ,Maharal)

        • dannybhoy

          Hannah your knowledgeable posts are so helpful in helping us understand the thinking behind these differences. Thank you.

        • IanCad

          I’m speaking for myself Hannah; We are privileged and blessed to have you within HG’s congregation.

        • IrishNeanderthal

          Hannah,

          A few hours delay, since among other things I have have been introducing a friend to the musical wonders of Kinky Friedman. However, all afternoon I have been thinking over this, and particularly over the meaning of halakha, which Wikipedia describes as a “way to walk”.

          Now I am very aware of the dangers of syncretism, but as I was pondering what you said this passage from chapter 38 of the Tao Te Ching jumped to mind, describing what happens when one departs from the Dao (older spelling Tao) meaning the Way.

          16 故失道而後德 Therefore, the Tao is lost, and then virtue
          17 失德而後仁 Virtue is lost, and then benevolence
          18 失仁而後義 Benevolence is lost, and then righteousness
          19 失義而後禮 Righteousness is lost, and then etiquette
          20 夫禮者 Those who have etiquette
          21 忠信之薄 are a thin shell of loyalty and sincerity
          22 而亂之首 and the beginning of chaos

          This certainly seems to me to describe the rot that has set in in Britain over the last, say, 200 years. The Victorians were certainly great ones for virtue, even if their practice did not live up to their ideals, then a period of good intentions (benevolence) followed by what? I doubt that the “righteousness” of vv 18 and 19 is anything like the וּפֹעֵל צֶדֶק of Psalm 15:2 — probably more like been seen to be in the right. But it’s quite difficult to know what ancient Chinese words actually meant. And v21 is so like today’s politics.

          I think Anglicanism has slipped into v 17.

          (As for Chinese words changing their meaning, “ru” linked below is composed of a woman and a mouth. It originally meant “obey” — patriarchy with a vengeance — but then evolved into “follow”, first in a physical and then in a metaphorical sense, and now simply means “if”.)

    • Yes, the homosexuals are seeking approval for their sinful behaviour at any cost. They don’t care if they split or ruin the Church in the process as long as they get what they want.

      • Paul Greenwood

        Repent and Desist

  • layreader

    Can I draw your attention to the fact that Synod overall voted by 242 votes to 184 to take note of the report. It was only the House of Clergy that let the show down by voting against (93 to 100). There is finally a change happening in Synod, and liberals will find it harder and harder to pursue their own small-minded objectives, at least through Synod.

    • There are too many homosexuals in the clergy, it’s being polluted.

      • Anton

        Look what happened at one of their training colleges, Westcott House, last month – a gay liturgy at an evening service. Outright blasphemy. Have any of the organisers been barred from further proceeding towards ordination? What is the selection procedure for ordinands?

        • They’ll turn the church into gay clubs and knitting circles. Just watch the number in homosexual Bishops increase after this Synod result.
          I agree the procedure for ordinands needs to be looked at in detail and changed.

        • IanCad

          Anton,
          I would have thought such a profanation to be unbelievable. But then; we have Sodom. Even after blindness struck their vile perversions continued unabated.
          Our civilization has become very, very sick.

      • magnolia

        Yes, certain theological colleges, some now shut, churned out rather a lot of these reprobates. I do not envy those who allowed this to happen as they will have to account to Jesus for it one day.

        I think the situation is improving, though possibly some dioceses have more trouble than others, as lenient Bishops attract those who wallow in lenience, whilst stricter ones tend to have the opposite effect !

        • Paul Greenwood

          drug-eating would not come amiss either

      • layreader

        Can’t deny that. And it was mostly those beardy Boomer bishops (the ones that signed the letter) that put them there when they were serving bishops. Changing Attitude has a lot to answer for.

      • Paul Greenwood

        always did attract them….that’s how MI6 blackmailed Pope Paul VI when Montini to use the rat-run (Odessa File) to get people like Klaus Barbie out of Europe so the Russians did not find out he had worked with MI6 and CIA

    • David

      Those are useful facts, thank you.
      I conjecture that the H of Clergy has attracted a disproportionate number of those who ignore the Bible, when it suits them, so as to try to ram through their “reforms”. So whilst the conservative Biblically led ministers are growing their churches by preaching the gospel, the “progressives” are politicking. If I am right then this is similar to the entryism long practiced by the left.
      I hope what you say about Synod finally changing is correct. A swing back to a Biblical, conservative approach in that body is long overdue. I have watched the liberal component of the C of E shrink for decades, whilst conservative local churches like mine grow steadily. Yet at the same time I’ve seen the top levels drifting ever more towards our surrounding, sinful culture. Longtimes I’ve asked when is the growing component of the faithful within the C of E going to be reflected in the governing bodies ? Any of your thoughts on that would be helpful.

      • Paul Greenwood

        The C of E is a top-down organisation whose Prayer Book is that of Cranmer although the C of E readily ignores the fact and his 39 Articles which most of these people could not recite. It has become an extension of the Golf Club or Creche rather than an evangelising religious experience and it often feels as if God has vacated the premises when visiting some churches which appear to be nothing more than social clubs for the socially insecure

        • layreader

          And the fact that we have a ridiculously cumbersome system of Synodical Government doesn’t help. Most church members feel completely remote from this process, because they can see no way of being involved. Your MP represents you better than your General Synod rep – how many of us actually know a General Synod member?

        • David

          There is much in what you say. But you need to get yourself to one of the genuinely Bible preaching traditional ones like mine which are growing.

    • Paul Greenwood

      When can we have a vote to abolish Bishops or perhaps to reduce their number to 20 ? There are more Bishops in the C of E today than when we had an Empire, and for a small land area it is a ridiculous overhead…….2 Archbishops each with say 7 Bishops reporting in, or maybe 4 each ?

  • magnolia

    His Grace rightly observes that much is spoken of LGBT pain. Much is also spoken of inclusion.

    However that is newspeak, for the whole lesbian and gay narrative IS one of exclusion. From personal experience of gays they can seem friendly, cheerful and ordinary, but sooner or later, maybe after months or even several years, you tend to encounter an act or acts and expression of extraordinary hatred and exclusion towards the opposite gender, WHICHEVER that may be. This needs listening to plus love plus healing, sometimes deep healing of the memories. Anything else is cruel, and life-draining not life-affirming. It is not kind to encourage people up a myriad odf dead ends. Some are so unobservant they never see this; others see, but do not wish to see for reasons of PC. Neither of these two is impressive, and all too many are obedient little poodles to the latest views churned out by the dark side of the USA, via Hollywood and media and soap opera. Not exactly independent thinkers then..

    These exclusive single sex cliques are quite simply NOT the Christian way. We are called to love and appreciate all aspects of both genders and to act appropriately and monogamously within that. There is nothing more beautiful in creation than that way of going about things, and we are called to the highest not the lowest, nor yet the easy pragmatic medium.

    • dannybhoy

      Yes from a Christian point of view the beauty of a person is not essentially the outward appearance as much as it is an inward beauty that comes from loving God.

  • dannybhoy

    You’re shallow. A Gospel Hall can have vases of flowers and be warm and light. What more can you want? To paraphrase that old Ikea advert, “Chuck out the Bling!”

  • len

    The’ gay issues’ affecting the church and many other aspects of society is mainly one of ‘acceptance.’
    If a Christian does not accept that a gay lifestyle it ‘acceptable’ then one instantly becomes homophobic, hateful, a bigot, unchristian, and judgmental.
    Jesus was known as ‘a friend of sinners ‘and often got into trouble with the religious crowd for keeping the company of sinners, prostitutes, and tax collectors etc.
    So which is the right way for Christians to approach the question of ‘acceptance’ of ‘ the Gay lifestyle?.’

    As humanity is undoubtedly not the condition that God created us to be in, we must consider the fact that something is wrong within humanity itself.We either accept our human condition as being ‘naturally dysfunctional’ or we accept Gods assessment of our condition which is being in need of a new heart , a new mind and a totally different relation ship with God and our fellow man.

    The thing that we must not do as Christians is to try and redeem what God has condemned.So we accept the person as God accepted us in our fallen condition, but not their lifestyle.

    God loves us because he sees our potential, not because he condones our lifestyle.

    • Paul Greenwood

      Maybe if you read Jesus in context you would have a more defined position. Jesus was a Torah-observant Jew who simply wanted people to understand the “Holy Spirit” rather than the holy law and certainly did not see Forgiveness without Repentance.

      Forgiveness without Repentance is all this repetitive mantra at Synod is about. I very much doubt Jesus has any presence in these settings

  • Peasant Farmer

    We’re participants in this debate time limited?

    Andrea Minchello-Williams was defending the traditional position very well here but gets cut off after 3 minutes:

    https://video.buffer.com/v/58a4a14eed9e8bca2c8b456f?utm_content=buffer7cb33&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

    • Anton

      She was cut off but she’d said pretty much all that needs to be said. There are too many words in all this.

      • Peasant Farmer

        She did very well, obviously nervous in front of a partisan crowd, full marks.

        • Anton

          She’s a lawyer; she isn’t put out by public speaking.

  • dannybhoy

    You are right. Because we relate to the world through our senses light, warmth and colour matter. Even acoustics matter.
    I accept that people like Jack and others like the ecclesiastical bling and ritual, but it does nothing for me.

    • CliveM

      DB

      In reality I have no problem with Gospel halls at all. They are generally full of fine Christians. But I find them theologically narrow and generally the Preaching is poor. Usually the result of the theological narrowness and lack of proper biblical education.

  • Sarky

    Had to look twice. Thought you said your wife was grey, dank and decorated in muddy brown. Was about ro offer my sympathies.

    • CliveM

      ROFL………………!

  • dannybhoy

    So, so funny…

  • carl jacobs

    So what exactly is wrong with grey, dank, and muddy brown?

    • CliveM

      When you live in a country that are those very hues for 6 months of the year, you want a bit of colour!

      Objectively there is nothing wrong, I simply find the depressing.