Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Catholic Church blackmails Government

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster (and Cranmer notes far too many media outlets simply referring to him as ‘the Archbishop of Westminster’…), has written to every member of the Cabinet asking them to exempt Catholic adoption agencies from their imminent Sexual Orientation Regulations which will outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexuality in the provision of ‘services’. It seems that the closet-Catholic PM and the representative of Opus Dei to HM Government are one side, and the rest of the Cabinet on the ‘anti-discrimination’ other.

Since the orthodox teaching of the Church is that marriage is monogamous and heterosexual, the Cardinal has said that its adoption agencies ‘would not be able to recruit and consider homosexual couples as potential adoptive parents’. To be obliged to do so would be ‘unreasonable, unnecessary, and unjust discrimination against Catholics’, and he has threatened the Government with the closure of his adoption agencies if they are obliged to conform to the law.

Cranmer has some sympathy with this whole ‘competing rights’ argument, but in the Anglican Church, the policy is to place children with couples or individuals who are assessed according to their suitability and to the needs of the child. There are 4000 children in Britain awaiting adoptive parents, loving families, somewhere they can feel secure and call ‘home’. While the traditional family unit is being challenged on all fronts, it is not for the Church – any denomination – to assert a blanket ban upon any human being in the provision of social service. The world is broken; marriages fail; all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and love can abound in the most surprising of places. If the Roman Catholic Church is only prepared to entertain couples as potential adoptive parents provided they are heterosexual, it begs the question as to how it pastors its own single parents, who manifestly fall short of its marital ideal.

Cranmer asks his communicants to consider that the Catholic Adoption Agency has conformed to race relations law without any problem; it has happily been placing needy children with married couples of manifold faiths. Cranmer wonders which is the lesser evil here. If the Roman Catholic Church is so prioritising the needs of the child, why is it prepared to place vulnerable children with heterosexual Muslims (a faith about which the Cardinal has already expressed a certain disquiet), but not homosexual Christians?

181 Comments:

Anonymous bob said...

As there is no Anglican diocese of Westminster it would seem a needless addition to add the words "Roman Catholic" to the title of Archbishop of Westminster - the only diocese of Westminster is a Catholic one, even if British law bans Catholics from claiming a territorial See.

I fail, in this instance, to see the difference between what you call blackmail and taking a stand on an issue of morality.

The Catholic teaching on homosexual acts is simply based on natural law. Governments can legislate sexual orientation equality in every way they wish - it still won't change the basic law of nature that homsexual acts cannot produce a child. If God, in his infinite wisdom, saw fit to design nature so that only a man and a woman could have children, then it would seem blindingly obvious that this is what any Church should accept as normative, instead of adopting the easy option of keeping everyone happy - a toothless Christianity!

These laws are not aimed at tolerance - they are aimed at forcing acceptance. Catholics are being forced to accept homosexual acts as equal in every way to heterosexual acts, rather than to tolerate the fact that they exist and to attempt to live peacably with that reality. Tolerance and acceptance are two different things.

I fail to see what you were trying to say about conforming to racial equality laws - race and sexual orientation are miles apart in moral terms - to link them together in such a way seems to me to say more about your thoughts on Catholicism than anything else.

I fear your prejudice against Catholicism is perhaps getting the better of you.

23 January 2007 at 19:49  
Anonymous Leonard said...

The Catholic agencies currently pass on enquiries from same sex couples to other agencies thereby giving them the opportunity to recieve assistance in adopting. The church accepts the law with regard to the legality of same sex adoption and this is not what is being protested. I agree that tolerance and acceptance are two different things, tolerance has clearly already been achieved and there is no need to push the issue further unless to enforce acceptance. It is a matter of conscience and I find it difficult to understand how equality for some can be achieved at the expense of equality for others.

23 January 2007 at 20:10  
Anonymous Colin said...

Hhm. Again these catholics are trying to conquer Great Britain. Don't they ever give up?

23 January 2007 at 20:18  
Anonymous bob said...

Well, we were there first Colin

23 January 2007 at 20:24  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

Well, paganism was there even earlier.

It is difficult to see through the subtle strategy of catholics for subduing protestantism. First, they established the EU as their instrument of power as His Grace has convincingly pointed out before. And now, His Grace reported that officially God is off the EU agenda.

What are these catholics up to? Does the Vatican plan to first secularize or islamize the EU in order to divert attention from the catholic conquest of Europe?

Hhm.

23 January 2007 at 20:52  
Anonymous bob said...

Yes the Vatican, in conjunction with a Martian strike force are planning a major coup. Of course, for years, Britain is all we Catholics have thought of, and the day when we would once again take the throne, and now the Martians have agreed to help us. We'll be assisted in our plan to subdue Protestantism by the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, an army of Leprechauns, not to mention Hobbits, Elves and Dwarves. Then finally when Britain is ours once again we shall turn to Europe and rise up with an army of Smurfs to take Europe for the Pope and his successors...

23 January 2007 at 21:04  
Anonymous Leonard said...

Shh Bob, don't give all the plans away.

23 January 2007 at 21:09  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Excellent.

His Grace has not laughed so much in ages, and thanks Mr Bob most sincerely.

23 January 2007 at 21:11  
Anonymous bob said...

Yes, those Smurfs demand secrecy!!!

23 January 2007 at 21:11  
Anonymous bob said...

You are most welcome, Lord Cranmer.

23 January 2007 at 21:17  
Blogger Cranmer said...

I fail to see what you were trying to say about conforming to racial equality laws - race and sexual orientation are miles apart in moral terms

Mr Bob,

It is not a question of ethnicity, but of religion. Since the pursuit of salvation of the soul is primary, and the Roman Catholic Church believes itself to be 'the sole organ for the salvation of mankind' (reiterated as recently as 2000 by Cardinal Ratzinger in Dominus Iesus), it stands to reason that the placing of vulnerable children with (say) Muslim parents would be to their soteriological detriment.

This said, since the Catholic Adoption Agency admits that it already places children with single homosexuals, His Grace is simply baffled that the Roman Catholic Church should consider the placing of children with a homosexual ('Christian') couple as morally undesirable, while permitting their placing with heterosexual Muslim couples, who cannot guide them to salvation, to be morally permissible.

23 January 2007 at 21:49  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Sorry Colin you are a little off the mark the term pagan is from Latin paganus, an adjective originally meaning "rural", "rustic" or "of the country." This was exclusively used within the Roman Empire and referred mainly to the farming class and was considered derogatory. In Britain the religion was dominated by the Druids, the Celtic priestly caste eventually outlawed by Claudius. Under Roman rule the Britains continued to worship native Celtic deities, such as Ancasta, but conflated with their Roman equivalents, like Mars Rigonemetos at Nettleham. Christianity entered Britain around this time (It is not appreciated today just how quickly Christianity spread through out the whole of the Roman Empire). So you have an underclass of Christians within the Romanic divinities but not worshiping them. Paganism today refersmore to the relatively modern cult of Wicca invented in 1954 by a British civil servant named Gerald Gardner. The more gullible accept the canard that it is ancient and mystic and .. well you get the picture. No the only Druid I know of is your very own Archdruid of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams, check it out if you don’t believe me.

As for taking over the UK this data is a little old (1994) but still relatively current and in only 150 years the Catholics are out numbering the Anglicans (again). Ohh run for the Hills the papists are coming! Light the Smithfield fires, Oh excuse me your Eminence Oxford; We got us some chicken to cook!

Denomination Number of members (million)
Roman Catholic 2.044
Church of England 1.808

23 January 2007 at 22:01  
Anonymous bob said...

I would draw Lord Cranmer's attention to two documents of the Catholic magesterium, and reference them specifically:

The Church regards with esteem also the Moslems. They adore the one God, living and subsisting in Himself; merciful and all- powerful, the Creator of heaven and earth, who has spoken to men; they take pains to submit wholeheartedly to even His inscrutable decrees, just as Abraham, with whom the faith of Islam takes pleasure in linking itself, submitted to God. Though they do not acknowledge Jesus as God, they revere Him as a prophet. They also honor Mary, His virgin Mother; at times they even call on her with devotion. In addition, they await the day of judgment when God will render their deserts to all those who have been raised up from the dead. Finally, they value the moral life and worship God especially through prayer, almsgiving and fasting.

Since in the course of centuries not a few quarrels and hostilities have arisen between Christians and Moslems, this sacred synod urges all to forget the past and to work sincerely for mutual understanding and to preserve as well as to promote together for the benefit of all mankind social justice and moral welfare, as well as peace and freedom.
-Nostra Aetate, 3

There are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God's plan for marriage and family. Marriage is holy, while homosexual acts go against the natural moral law. Homosexual acts “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”.

Sacred Scripture condemns homosexual acts “as a serious depravity... (cf. Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 6:10; 1 Tim 1:10). This judgment of Scripture does not of course permit us to conclude that all those who suffer from this anomaly are personally responsible for it, but it does attest to the fact that homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered”. This same moral judgment is found in many Christian writers of the first centuries and is unanimously accepted by Catholic Tradition.

Nonetheless, according to the teaching of the Church, men and women with homosexual tendencies “must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided”. They are called, like other Christians, to live the virtue of chastity. The homosexual inclination is however “objectively disordered” and homosexual practices are “sins gravely contrary to chastity”
-Consideration regarding proposals to give legal recognition to unions between homosexual person, 4

23 January 2007 at 22:08  
Anonymous Colin said...

The Recusant,

I only knew about the Celtic priestly caste, the Druids. Thank you for taking the trouble to teach me something new. You're right, of course.

23 January 2007 at 22:21  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Bob,

His Grace is familiar with these writings, but begs to point out that the Roman Catholic Church stpos short of saying that Muslims are saved. Respect and esteem are not soteriologically efficacious.

On homosexuality, His Grace agrees with you on the 'contrary to nature' thesis, yet notes that Rome believes the homosexual to be 'objectively disordered'. This being so, why does the Catholic Adoption Agency place children with 'objectively disordered' single adults, but is not prepared to countenance 'objectively disordered' couples?

23 January 2007 at 22:31  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

I have to admit that His Grace has a strong argument by pointing out that the placing of children with any other religion than Catholicism (e.g. Protestantism) is illogical "Since ...the Roman Catholic Church believes itself to be 'the sole organ for the salvation of mankind' (reiterated as recently as 2000 by Cardinal Ratzinger in Dominus Iesus),.."

Either they believe in the sole salvation of the sould by the Catholic Church then it would be a crime to deny salvation to children by accepting adoption by other faiths or the Catholic Church does not believe in it then they should abandon a dogma which is contradictory to their practice.

However, your comment is well-reasoned and quite impressive in regard to homosexuality.

23 January 2007 at 22:40  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

If, as my Lord Cranmer would have us believe, he is conversant with "Dominus Iesus” he will surely be aware that Roman Catholic teaching is via the whole Magisterium and the deposit of faith through both Holy Scripture and Tradition guided by the Holy Spirit. I would suggest to your Eminence that you actually read Dominus Iesus which is an excellent document produced by The Holy Father while still a Cardinal before demonstrating your ignorance of it to the world. In particular I would draw your attention to paragraph 2, 20 and the conclusion (In fact read all of it). Additionally we Catholics have always taught this as the following testifies:
Concerning this doctrine the Pope of Vatican I, Pius IX, spoke on two different occasions. In an allocution (address to an audience) on December 9th, 1854 he said:

We must hold as of the faith, that out of the Apostolic Roman Church there is no salvation; that she is the only ark of safety, and whosoever is not in her perishes in the deluge; we must also, on the other hand, recognize with certainty that those who are invincible in ignorance of the true religion are not guilty for this in the eyes of the Lord. And who would presume to mark out the limits of this ignorance according to the character and diversity of peoples, countries, minds and the rest?

Again, in his encyclical Quanto conficiamur moerore of 10 August, 1863 addressed to the Italian bishops, he said:

It is known to us and to you that those who are in invincible ignorance of our most holy religion, but who observe carefully the natural law, and the precepts graven by God upon the hearts of all men, and who being disposed to obey God lead an honest and upright life, may, aided by the light of divine grace, attain to eternal life; for God who sees clearly, searches and knows the heart, the disposition, the thoughts and intentions of each, in His supreme mercy and goodness by no means permits that anyone suffer eternal punishment, who has not of his own free will fallen into sin.

Your Eminence be clear on this, we Catholics do not hold or believe that all non-Catholics or non-Christians are destined for the fires of hell, that is between the Christ and the individual. This is the teaching of our Church, our Bishops and the Magisterium. Please don’t misrepresent it again, we hold it dear and we will defend it.

23 January 2007 at 22:51  
Anonymous bob said...

You seem to have misread the text Lord Cranmer. It said that the homosexual inclination is objectively disordered, not the person. I would imagine that the assumption is that a single homosexual person who approached a Catholic Adoption Agency to adopt a child is living the life of chastity that the document I quoted above referred to and is endeavouring, to the best of their abilities, like all of us, to live a virtuous life. A homosexual couple, no matter how loving and committed their relationship may be, are living a life that is contrary to virtue, again as the document above pointed out.

To answer your objection in regard to the salvationof Muslims I refer you to the following:

But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Mohamedans, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind.
Lumen Gentium, 16

23 January 2007 at 22:51  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, as The Recusant wisely advises, I would suggest you actually read Dominus Iesus before commenting on it's contents.

23 January 2007 at 22:58  
Anonymous Colin said...

The Recusant,

You said "we Catholics do not hold or believe that all non-Catholics or non-Christians are destined for the fires of hell, that is between the Christ and the individual."

Then, what do people need the Church for, why should they pay priests, and why this resistance against the Islamization of Europe? It is all between the individual and Christ, right?

Bob,

Homosexuals are nice, kind, often highly intelligent and creative people which deserve our respect. However, nobody asked they child if it wanted to be raised in such an unusual family consisting of two homosexual partners. You may object that nobody is able to ask a newborn child. Correct. However, even if we cannot be certain about the child's wishes, there is a very high probability that they would not consent. Children always want to be like all the others in school. I wouldn't like to have been raised by a homosexual couple, would you ? Since such a placement of children is in complete disregard of the child's interests, it is against all our understanding of human rights and the fact that Catholic priests claim - based on their religious authority - that it is alright, doesn't make the situation better. The final result will be that the population will abandon a religion which is against their inborn instinct and will turn to other more acceptable faiths.

23 January 2007 at 23:18  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, with all due respect you have monumetally and drastically misunderstood what I was saying. I was not, and did not at any time, argue in favour of placing a child with a homosexual couple for adoption. What I said, if you would be kind enough to re-read my earlier post, was that it is acceptable to place a child with a single homosexual person who is living a chaste life, that is a homosexual person who does not indulge their inclination to have a sexual relationship, or any relationship claiming to be equal in kind to marriage, with a person of their own gender.

You also seem to have a misguided idea that priests run every Catholic agency. Whilst priests may serve on the boards of these agencies, the actual work, and often chair and decision making functions are carried out by lay people.

You also seem to think, or at least give the impression that you think, that Catholic teaching is made up based on the whims of Catholic clergy. Catholic teaching (although doubtless Lord Cranmer may disagree) is based on the living tradition of the Church, and on scripture. A lot of Catholic teaching is also based on reason and rational argument. This is especially true of Catholic morality.

Furthermore, I should point out to you that Catholic priests are required to undertake a course lasting at least 5-7 years, during which they undertake academic degress in philosophy and theology, to say nothing of the many priests who pursue further studies across a wide range of subjects.

If you are going to disagree with me, please at least do me the courtesy of reading what I actually write.

23 January 2007 at 23:33  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

Thanks for your kind advise "I would suggest you actually read Dominus Iesus before commenting on it's contents"

I trust that you, the recusant and all the other excellent theologicians on this blog are able to read it and to report correctly about it's main points. In my humble view, the fact that the doctrines of Catholic Church have often been wrong in the past centuries (e.g sun turns around the earth) and are not infrequently changed, suggests that might be wrong again. Moreover, I do not believe in the infalliability of any human being and can't see why a falliable human being suddenly becomes infalliable by the act of being elected as Pope.

I only comment on His Grace's postings and your comments. If your comments are correct, they should be able to stand the test of reason. If your ideas cannot pass this test if challenged and you are unable to provide additional evidence, then your ideas are wrong. These are the rules of any academic or honest debate. The claim that the opponent should first read this or that or something else, is not an acceptable defense for your thesis. You would fail any doctoral exam (including in theology) with such a defense.

Just saw your last comment before pushing the submit button. You are right that you did not talk about a homosexual couple. But does this make the situation any better? Ask children from broken homes. They nearly always feel hurt that they don't have both parents. If a single homosexual adopts a child, it has two problems, i.e. a homosexual single parent and the lack of the second parent. That would be acceptable if there weren't enought straight and married couples available willing to adopt a child. However, many heterosexual couples want to adopt a child but don't have the opportunity.

23 January 2007 at 23:56  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, I was not sitting an exam. You did not read what I wrote correctly. It is as simple as that. It is a matter of complete indifference to me if I would fail a doctoral examination because of it.

You are looking at the issue of a single chaste homosexual person adopting a child in sociological terms. I am looking at in terms of moral theology. They are two different fields and therefore two completely different arguments.

You completely misunderstand the doctrine of papal infallibility because you subscribe to the myth that the Pope is infallible in everything he says. He is not. The Pope, for example, cannot pronounce tomorrow that a cow’s milk is purple in colour. He would be wrong. Papal infallibility is restricted to those times when the Pope speaks on behalf of the entire Church on matters of faith and morals. This is a very, very infrequent occurrence.

And yes, there have been times when the Catholic Church has gotten things wrong. Show me an institution made up of flawed human beings that hasn’t. But time tends to teach us, and our understanding of the world and how it works in the 21st century, and the understanding of the world and how it worked in the 16th century are vastly different, and any assessment of historical controversies should be viewed in that light.

I do beg of you, Colin, to read what it is the Catholic Church actually teaches before you condemn it. The various documents are available in a multitude of languages on the Vatican's website. If after reading them you wish to condemn them then that is your perogative, but at least condemn them for what they acutally say, and not what you think they might say, or what you've been told they say.

24 January 2007 at 00:29  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Colin, you do seem to get the papists running around a bit buut here goea (again)


“Then, what do people need the Church for,”

Why do you need your family, where do you learn your first lessons in life, who teaches you right from wrong? Who guides you and teaches you to love. Church is not a building, neither is it a Pope, bishop or priest, it is the family of Christ who is head of His Church. Jesus Christ instituted his Church on earth, this was understood by the Apostles and the Church Fathers 'Go therefore, make disciples of all the nations'. (Matt. 28:19)

“Why should they pay priests? “

Because if they don’t they’ll stave and that’s just not right, I wouldn’t even starve a Vicar (only just a joke!).

But apart from that surely you would agree that the New Testament authorises leaders of the Church to be pastors, deacons, bishops. Romans 15:16. Paul speaks of himself in these words: "to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit." Paul’s use of "to act as a priest" (hierourgeo) fits with the Catholic Church’s understanding of a priest as one who intercedes for the people of God as an intermediary. The priest today, like Paul, offers the people back to God in union with the perfect sacrifice of Christ, the great high priest through the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, just as the Church fathers did.

Perhaps you are unaware that priests in the Catholic Church are also called presbyters, which is usually translated as "elders" in most English Bibles. They are the elders who guide the Church under the authority of the bishops (called episkopoi in the New Testament).




“and why this resistance against the Islamization of Europe? “

Ahh we seem to have shot off on a tangent here and I can only second guess the Pope and no doubt I will be wide of the mark but in good faith this is my understanding. I started out thinking of all the reasons and arguments but I think it boils down to Good Fences make Good Neighbours. Not much else to say on that really




“It is all between the individual and Christ, right?”

In the end yes it is, we will all stand before Christ and give an account for the life he gave us. Thomas More said to the Duke of Norfolk

Norfolk: Look, I'm not a scholar, and frankly I don't know whether the marriage was lawful or not - but damn it, Thomas, look at these names! You know these men! Can't you do as I did and come along with us for fellowship?
To which More replies:
More: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Heaven for doing according to your conscience, and I am sent to hell for not doing according to mine, will you come along with me - for fellowship?

Thomas believed it so much he died for it; I hope to meet him one day. I think Christ may show us just how much we loved and how much we could have loved, in that moment we will know just why we were made and I think we will understand the sacrifice of the resurrection, whether we can stand that knowledge or not is the $64,000 question.

Finally Show me one single piece of authorised Catholic Church teaching that stated the sun rotated around the earth. Let me save you the trouble there isn’t any. Before Galileo (I presume that is who you will turn to next) there was a bloke called Nicolaus Copernicus (who was a Catholic Priest and used to lecture in astronomy and mathematics at the Vatican) any how Galileo took his ideas, developed them and started shouting around the place the bible is wrong because…. Now he was silenced in the end, not because he taught something the Church denied, it didn’t, because he started to tell people the bible was wrong. Think about it, Peter was a fisherman, where did he think those boats went to when they disappeared over the horizon, fell off the edge?

If you get the privilege to visit the Vatican you may see the maps of the world painted next to the sisteen chapel. Date them and date Galileo.

24 January 2007 at 00:58  
Anonymous Fulham Reactionary said...

To interrupt the Colin v Bob argument: His Grace says:

"The world is broken; marriages fail; all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and love can abound in the most surprising of places. If the Roman Catholic Church is only prepared to entertain couples as potential adoptive parents provided they are heterosexual, it begs the question as to how it pastors its own single parents, who manifestly fall short of its marital ideal."

Surely the point is that homosexuals openly embrace their sin, and regard it as not only forgivable, but also as being a good thing. Others who sin, attempt to avoid sinning, and feel guilt when they do sin. There is a manifest difference between a willing, indeed a proud, sinner, and one who regrets and seeks forgiveness for his sin. As his Grace says, everyone sins, and therefore the latter type of sinner may be a fit person to raise children. However, the former type of person is not.

I'm afraid I'm with the Papists on this one.

24 January 2007 at 01:03  
Anonymous scott said...

Hmm. I did not expect Cranmer to take this line - the real shame is that the C of E isn't with the Romans on this, I think, or that neither Church is against placing kids with anyone other than heterosexual Christian couples.

24 January 2007 at 04:46  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Hmm. I did not expect Cranmer to take this line -

What? Via Media?

24 January 2007 at 07:36  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Colin,

"I do not believe in the infallibility of any human being and can't see why a fallible human being suddenly becomes infallible by the act of being elected as Pope."

You have it spot on Colin; The Magisterium does not teach that the person of the Pope is infallible. The Pope can make mistakes, if he were infallible he would not be a sinner but perfect and we know of only two who were Perfect, The Blessed Virgin and Jesus Christ, Oh I just know you are going to go for that one. SO here is a challenge Colin what does the Catholic Church teach about infallibility and on what scripture does it base this on traditionally?

I am hearted with the recent support of Canterbury and York today, and on a similar note if you find there is no loner a place in the Anglican Communion for that most excellent man The Bishop of Rochester Michael Nazir-Ali pass him over we have a place waiting for him, he would be a most welcome addition.

24 January 2007 at 10:12  
Anonymous Pax Vobiscum said...

Bob, My congratulations sir on your outstanding explanation of the Churches teaching on this matter I could not have explained it half as well. I share with you the perception that quite a few of our separated brethren seem to think our faith was knocked up on the back of a fag packet 10 minutes ago just to be awkward. However I am always heartened when an aspect is explained, most respect the position as sound and with good reason even if they do not agree.


Pax Vobiscum

24 January 2007 at 10:14  
Anonymous bob said...

Et cum spiritu tuo

24 January 2007 at 10:54  
Anonymous Dr. Syn said...

If your Grace will allow me to de-lurk for a moment -

The outrage we are hearing from our politicians and media chatterers with regard to the Bishop of Westminster's statement (and now its support by Canterbury and York) is, I believe, both wholly expected and wholly dangerous for any Christian organisation in Britain.

It is expected because it comes from the usual assumption that only irrational prejudice can lead to the conviction that homosexuality is morally less-than-perfect; it is not a position that can be taken by persons of intellect, education and good will. As result, the assumption goes, the moral theological position of the bishop/s cannot be a theologically derived, intellectually rigorous and consistent conviction honestly arrived at. As such, the practices that follow logically from the predujice both can and should be legislated against.

And this is where the danger for all Christian organisations comes in. The State is essentially determining the theology of Church of Rome by Parliamentary fiat. That cannot be good for anyone.

Thank you. I shall return to lurking now.

24 January 2007 at 12:02  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to say I agree entirely with your post. Especially the part about there being children who desperately need loving homes and we shouldn't be restricting their access to them.

If the Roman Catholic Church is so prioritising the needs of the child, why is it prepared to place vulnerable children with heterosexual Muslims (a faith about which the Cardinal has already expressed a certain disquiet), but not homosexual Christians?

Hear bloody hear!

24 January 2007 at 12:24  
Blogger Curly said...

Surely this is one of the greatest muddles that Blair and his government have got themselves into, entirely beholden to pressure and lobby groups (and the PM's wife), and legislating where it is not necessary!

24 January 2007 at 12:28  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Your Grace,

If I may

"Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor has threatened the Government with the closure of his adoption agencies if they are obliged to conform to the law."

This is not quite true. Although supported financially by the RCC the Catholic Adoption Agencies are not able to survive without government money. So the truth is if the RCC will not abandon its values under government pressure (and it won't) the government will withdraw all funding. The Catholic Adoption Agencies will be forced to close from lack of funding. Not through a fit of pique.


"the closet-Catholic PM"

Interesting, this is a man who has abstained or voted against the Church position on every occasion in the house. Just Last month he openly criticised the Churches position on Condoms (Lets not go there). He was told by the last Archbishop of Westminster not to present himself for communion as he was in the habit of doing. It is popular speculation but I think he has a long way to go to cross the Tiber.


"Anglican Church, the policy is to place children with couples or individuals who are assessed according to their suitability and to the needs of the child."

That is their position and their right. I don’t feel it is our business to tell them to change because we may disagree on religious grounds, unless they are harming the child.


"While the traditional family unit is being challenged on all fronts, it is not for the Church – any denomination – to assert a blanket ban upon any human being in the provision of social service."

Fully agree, within the traditional family.


"it begs the question as to how it pastors its own single parents, who manifestly fall short of its marital ideal."

With love, respect, support and hopefully understanding within the family of the Church.


"Cranmer wonders which is the lesser evil here. If the Roman Catholic Church is so prioritising the needs of the child, why is it prepared to place vulnerable children with heterosexual Muslims (a faith about which the Cardinal has already expressed a certain disquiet), but not homosexual Christians?"

The Church does not teach, “Accept the lesser of two evils and that will be all right”. I trust you use the adjective vulnerable in the sense that all children are vulnerable, placing a Child with Muslim Parents would (I presume) involve a Muslim child, who else would be a better parent? We were accused after the war of not returning Jewish children to their parents because the children had been baptised catholic, Shock horror I hear you say, no a baptismal certificate saved the child’s life in Europe from being sent to the extermination camps. The church perhaps was a little slow in some cases but 20+ million refugees moving around and being as sure as possible parent were who they claimed to be took a little longer. Imagine the outcry let alone the injustice of placing Muslim children with Christian families and forcibly baptising them, who would condone such an act.

24 January 2007 at 12:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace

As usual, highly perceptive and erudite.

I hope I do not lower the tone of the discourse by observing that perhaps the Catholic Church is not in the strongest of positions in making such criticisms:

With allegations of priesthood peadophialia a world-wide phenonomen, perhaps children are better off in a loving home rather than left in the care of the Church.

24 January 2007 at 13:06  
Blogger Little Black Sambo said...

Pope JP2 rescued a Jewish orphan in Poland during the war & made sure it would be brought up in the Jewish faith.

This latest insistence by the Govt is totalitarian, for all their proclaimed love of "diversity". They are also, in little apparently unimportant ways, enrolling the Church in conforming marriage to homosexual partnerships. We must all subscribe to the same view of gayness & its accompanying practices. We have ways of making you tolerant.

24 January 2007 at 13:09  
Anonymous bob said...

Kris - just because the Church has been let down by the people who represent it, that does not ipso facto invalidate the Church's moral arguments. It seems to be to be the equivalent of saying I will refuse to read my letters because I don't like the postman.

Does your the logic of your argument mean, then, that every policy or moral argument put forward by an organization becomes invalid if individual members within that organization were found guilty of crimes? If so, then the Tory party has no choice but to disband immediately, along with, I would safely guess, every other political party in the world.

24 January 2007 at 14:07  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The savagely hysterical back drop to all this is that it is virtually impossible for any number of white average couples (especially) to make any progress at all with the national disgrace , that is the adoption agencies. Their racism is staggering their inefficiency is tragic and meanwhile children end up in accomodation considerably less salubrious than her majesties prisons ( that is not a joke ).

It really is hard to see how the position could get much worse.As there would clearly be any number of more deserving cases for the gay men who want child its hard to see how the position would arise. ARe they seriously going to be placed on an equal footing with anormal home ...theer are many perefctly good reasons why that should not be . have you any idea of the checks over years instituted against the possibility of ...god knows what


There should be little of practical import then and I wonder if this really is chiefly irritating by association with many other Liberalising measures forced on an unwilling population by the political elite.

The relevance is symbolic . It breaks the bond of mother , father and baby and by inference and chips once mor at the centrality of the family to the nation

24 January 2007 at 15:06  
Blogger Cranmer said...

I will refuse to read my letters because I don't like the postman.

Mr Bob,

His Grace's postman is a gentleman of Asian extraction, and His Grace would therefore be arrested for 'racism'.

Your contributions to this thread have brought no end of pleasure to His Grace, and he is always immensely keen to give his Roman Catholic cousins ample opportunity to expound their doctrinal beliefs to the Separated Brethren.

His Grace is not quite as ignorant on such matters as some communicants imply (or, indeed, state quite overtly).

On this particlar topic, he can't help feeling that the Cardinal and the Bishops of the Church of England are pontificating prematurely. Yes, the imminent law has profound consequences, but the response should not be to threaten the adoption agencies with closure, thereby terminating a source of hope for hundreds of orphans each year. His Grace is of the opinion that these agencies should continue exactly as they have always done, and then, in the event of complaint about 'homophobia', let the accusations be made, the charges be brought, and the whole thing be played out in the courts, in the full glare of the media.

Judicial pronouncements establish precedents, and it is such a process that is purposely designed to ensure that parliamentary laws are interpreted fairly, in the context of 'real life'. Precedents may then be established which may undermine the statute, and 'exceptions' may be made even though they are 'in tension' with the letter of the law.

24 January 2007 at 16:16  
Anonymous bob said...

Lord Cranmer, your comments are kind indeed, given that I feel I have rather hijacked this thread, so my apologies for that.

In reference to your desire that the orphanages remain open, I can see the logic of your argument, and have much sympathy for it. However, in the current climate of a dictatorship of uniformity of thought and opinion in regard to the issue of homosexual unions and adoption rights I cannot foresee the outcome of any judicial proceedings producing a judgement in favour of the Church. Perhaps I am pessimistic. In any case such a judgement would force the closure of Catholic adoption agencies. They could not continue to function under the new legislation and remain Catholic.

I also think that it is better to take a stand. The cardinal (no pun intended) virtue of fortitude is one which is sorely lacking in the world today. Sometimes it is better to stand up and act than to sit back and wait.

I do hope that you continue to read your letters. Your first arrest may be seen as unfortunate, your second arrest might be seen as careless.

24 January 2007 at 17:22  
Anonymous dexey said...

Your Grace,

Given that the Muslims have their own parliament, gays their mouthpiece organisations like Stonewall, and black folk have the CRE and whatever else, who is representing the interests of white, heterosexual, married people?
I used to think that you did. You may remember us as the indigenous people of these islands who breed children for others to blow up, abuse and call honky.

24 January 2007 at 17:52  
Anonymous Voyager said...

it is not for the Church – any denomination – to assert a blanket ban upon any human being in the provision of social service.

It is not really for Social Services to do so either Your Grace, but the ideological rigidities of Social Services Departments do place impediments upon adoption on categories such as age and race, and poor Mrs Ritchie had to find solace in Malawi as a 47-year old woman in search of adoption.

I really find it preposterous that the theological positions of The Catholic Church are to be condemned but the Secular Humanist Ideological Position of social workers are somehow to be revered. I confess I had not expected such lapses of concentration from His Grace.

One must begin at some stage to question the legitimacy of The State itself. It is clear that Labour has gold-plated yet another EU Directive in this Frattini- Year of Diversity. The issue becomes one our 17th Century forebears appreciated better than ourselves - that of Leviathan - forcing its way into our very consciences. After the events of the 20th Century one might have expected a little more alacrity on the part of the thinking population as the Secular Priesthood of Lawyers seeks ever greater powers of persecution and inquisition.

Colin fished up the old red-herring of Galileo but forgets that it was not in fact The Vatican which stipulated the geocentric view of the universe but Claudius Ptolemaeus, known to the world as Ptolemy who used a system of epicycles to codify Greek theory on planetary orbits.

It was in fact conventional wisdom until 1543 when Mikolaj Kopernik, a Polish Church official in Wroclaw developed a heliocentric view of the world - it was this proposition that Galileo subscribed to.

It was simply conventional wisdom for 1000 years - longer than the Newtonian system lasted before Einstein. I would hate today to have any politician lay down any principle in Physics and we saw in Stalinist Russia what happened when Lysenko was let loose with his crackpot theories on plant genetics.

The point is that The State does not have a monopoly on Knowledge or Wisdom, but it should not believe it is the keeper of men's souls.






BTW Bob.....your first post on this thread was excellent and your subsequent efforts built upon that forceful exposition.!

24 January 2007 at 17:56  
Blogger Cranmer said...

I really find it preposterous that the theological positions of The Catholic Church are to be condemned but the Secular Humanist Ideological Position of social workers are somehow to be revered. I confess I had not expected such lapses of concentration from His Grace.

His Grace has neither condemned their theology nor exalted secular humanism to a superior status. Indeed, the doctrines of the latter are antithetical to the former, and he rejects the presumed moral superiority and facade of enlightenment they purport to bestow. His Grace happens to believe that God is above both the state and any man-made belief system. The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us. The Word did not become state to dominate and coerce. The state is not the Word; all things were not made by it. The Word therefore stands, pre-eminent.

24 January 2007 at 18:24  
Anonymous bob said...

Thank you for your kind words Voyager.

24 January 2007 at 19:04  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Bob

The logic of my argument is that the child's needs should come first.

I doubt the child's needs are best served in an institution (which has form) when there maybe a family out there who would love to raise a child and give a kid a chance.

24 January 2007 at 19:45  
Anonymous bob said...

Kris, the presumption in law is innocent until proven guilty, so unless you're willing to make a provable case against every single member of the Catholic Clergy then I don't think the "form" you mention has any bearing on this current situation.

As I pointed out elsewhere there seems to be a perpetual myth that priests run every facet of every Catholic organisation or insitution. Most Catholic institutions or organisation are staffed by and mostly run by lay people, not priests. So then you would also have to make a provable case against every Catholic lay person working in these insitutions or organisations. If you can prove them guilty then by all means condemn them. If you can't then you have to, under law, assume innocence, regardless of "form."

I think the needs of the child are best served by being raised in an environment where there is a maternal and a paternal figure who will be able to give the child the complimentary love and care of those genders. It is the most natural thing in the world, and therefore, in my view, the best environment in which to raise a child.

24 January 2007 at 20:06  
Anonymous Colin said...

"The logic of my argument is that the child's needs should come first.

I doubt the child's needs are best served in an institution (which has form) when there maybe a family out there who would love to raise a child and give a kid a chance."


That was precisely my point. Thank you Kris for saying much shorter and clearer than I was able to do.

24 January 2007 at 20:13  
Anonymous Timmy said...

No Kris the logic of your argument is that where a system has failed to protect children it should be prevented from any involvement in child contact/care in the future

“Two men who sexually abused young boys placed in their foster care have been sent to prison.”

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/5109518.stm?ls

How does your argument hold now?

24 January 2007 at 20:20  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Kris,

You Say "an institution (which has form)"

The institution you refer to is the Catholic Adoption Agency

Please provide the evidence of your claim.

24 January 2007 at 20:36  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

Glad that you joined the discussion. I was already missing your comments.

You hit the nail on the head with "The issue becomes one our 17th Century forebears appreciated better than ourselves - that of Leviathan - forcing its way into our very consciences. After the events of the 20th Century one might have expected a little more alacrity on the part of the thinking population as the Secular Priesthood of Lawyers seeks ever greater powers of persecution and inquisition."

However, "Colin fished up the old red-herring of Galileo but forgets that it was not in fact The Vatican which stipulated the geocentric view.."; the history of science wasn't the issue of the discussion but the Catholic Church's claim of infalliability.

Bob,

You are an intelligent man which I highly respect and I didn't ask you for "sitting an exam". The issue was the debating style. If person X gives as proof of his point "You first have to read text A" instead of providing the proof himself, than person Y has the same right and may retort "But you first have to read text B". That's a parody of a debate.

Evidence and logic are the material of a debate and not the exchange of reading lists. You are absolutely correct that I did not read most of the texts of the Catholic Church and millions of other books. No human being is able to read everything. It's absolutely no problem for me or any other person to provide you with a long list of books you didn't read yet, but which might be relevant for the topic.

Should it really necessary that you first read all the books on my reading list before you are permitted to share your knowledge with me and give me your view? I don't think so. Because if I read and understood the texts on my reading list, I should be able to provide you with the essential points. And the same holds for the texts on your reading list. Together, we know more than each of us alone. If we exchange our knowledge and views, we might be wiser after discussing a topic than before. I have to admit that I didn't get much wiser this time, except for the history of paganism as explained by the Recusant. Maybe next time ... Or maybe I am simply to stupid to grasp the subtleties of theology as well as you do although I was taught for three years philosopy and ethics by the professors of theology at a Catholic university. Although I passed all their exams, I wasn't impressed by what they taught such as Teilhard de Chardin and all that stuff. Thus, if you need a reading list of Catholic teachings just let me know.

24 January 2007 at 20:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it ain't just the head of the catholic adoption agency that is complaining- it is Cardnial Cormac Mc What'sits. He is speaking for the Catholic Church- not just the agency. I regret to pass on the news that the Church has form.

Now you can answer a question? Why should an institution's "principles" take precedence over what's best for the child?

24 January 2007 at 21:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh yeah, I forgot to add: -

especially when that institution receives government funding..

24 January 2007 at 21:17  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now you can answer a question? Why should an institution's "principles" take precedence over what's best for the child?


in which case the UK must be made entirely secular. Does this mean we have to get rid of the Church of England and all those bishops sitting in the Lords?

24 January 2007 at 21:19  
Anonymous Colin said...

Timmy,

Your criticism of Kris' statement based on singular cases is unfounded. Cases can be found for everything and their opposite. No general conclusions can be drawn from a few cases( e.g. men bit dog). For more general conclusions, a sufficient large sample is necessary (and this shows that mostly dogs bit men). Another example, you can always find a few cases of mothers who killed their child. But in general, a child is much better with its mother than in institutional care including forster parents.

Studies of large numbers show that as Kris said, a family who loves to raise a child and give a kid a chance is better than any institutional care. The disastrous effects of maternal deprivation and institutional care on child behavioral development has been well studied in animals as well as in humans. Hence, Kris is right.

24 January 2007 at 21:24  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, I shall attempt to be as clear as possible.

At 10.58pm I suggested you read that the document Dominus Iesus

Your comment in response to me at 11.18pm made it clear that you had not properly read or understood my previous posts regarding the issue of adoption by homosexual couples. I pointed this out.

These are two seperate points. They are not related to each other. You seem to have in some way combined them in some way that I do not understand.

24 January 2007 at 21:27  
Anonymous glyn said...

As this is my first contribution, I must say that I have found Your Grace's examinations of religio-political agendas to be of exemplary quality these past many months. However, I do wonder whether Your Grace has been partaking of the wrong type of food these last few days or has been overcome by another type of malady? Firstly, Your Grace's comments on the pronouncements of Bishop Harper were equivocal to say the least (though I will not dwell on them here). Then, Your Grace 'adopts' (Your Grace will pardon the pun) this most strange position with respect to this relatively straightforward matter.

Your Grace's communicants Dr Syn and Recusant have spoken correctly on this matter. Recusant has addressed the issue of why Christian adoption agencies would not necessarily have reservations regarding placing a child with Muslim parents. If the child is from that religious background and there is a Muslim family wishing to adopt the child, why should the said agency do otherwise than place the said child with the said parents?

Now, I will address two other points. Firstly, Your Grace asks why the Catholic adoption agencies would place a child with a single adult who is homosexual and not a couple. Should Your Grace's description of current policy be correct, then this would be perfectly justifiable for two reasons. Firstly, the agency will probably not know that the individual concerned is homosexual (how could it know?) and, secondly, even if it, the individual may have decided to observe chastity in spite of homosexual temptations. Your Grace must recall that it is homosexual acts which are condemned in the Bible.

This leads on to my second point. Your Grace appears to equate homosexual relationships with other sins through the words 'all have sinned'. In terms of magnitude, Your Grace may be correct (God will ultimately decide). However, there is great difference in terms of intention. When we confess our sins, we profess to use Your Grace's own ingenious crafted words, "We do earnestly repent and are heartily sorry for these our misdoings; the remembrance of them is grievous unto us, the burden of them is intolerable" and petition the Lord that "we may ever hereafter serve and please Thee in newness of life". However, those who are in a homosexual relationship cannot seriously mean these words as they are still committed to future sinning through their relationship. This is a critical point on Christian views on homosexuality.

I should also like to point out to Your Grace that it is instructive to consider issues whilst remembering who supports each side of the debate. The reason that this is important is that it usually provides a good guide to how the said law will be implemented. Your Grace's communicant Bob has reached a similar conclusion to my own, that the law will be implemented to compel Christian adoption agencies to permit homosexual couples to adopt. This interpretation is also agreed by all protagonists in the debate.

24 January 2007 at 21:36  
Anonymous bob said...

Kris - if we adopt your "form" argument then I'm afraid we all have to completely disregard anything and everything Cranmer has to say with reagrd to the government of Britain as he has "form" for committing treason.

The Germans and Russians have "form" for committing genocide so I guess we better stop buying Volkswagens and BMWs and stop drinking Vodka.

The Australians have "form" as convicts so England should definitelty stop playing the Ashes against them (although that might actually be charitable given the last result).

The Italians have "form" as facists so definitely no more pasta or wine.

Or is your "form" argument solely confined to Catholics, and can you therefore explain how that's consistent and ethical?

24 January 2007 at 21:37  
Anonymous Colin said...

Wow, 57 comments!

His Grace ought to be congratulated for having chosen a stimulating topic. The priority of interest is surprising me: Economy, EU and freedom doesn't arouses only a few. However, when it comes to religious differences, people get very excited as if their life depend on it. Does His Grace have any statistics on the numbers and lengths of comments in relationship to the topics of his posts?

24 January 2007 at 22:10  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Colin,

His Grace most certainly does, but nothing approaches the vehemence and frequency of posts which follow anything on the subject of Islam.

Islam appears to be to have become to the 21st-century United Kingdom what Roman Catholicism was to 16th-century England.

Everything else about which His Grace posts pales into relative insiginifance. If he recalls correctly, his post on the Islamic Day at Alton Towers tops the poll, exceeding 100 posts. Bizarre.

24 January 2007 at 22:31  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

In response to your last comment at 9:27 pm:

You said: "At 10.58pm I suggested you read that the document Dominus Iesus" I told you already several times that I do not accept this kind of debate, i.e. to give the discussants homework in the form of a reading list instead of a clearly stated argument. If you want to debate with me, say by yourself what you consider relevant and important to disprove my argument.

Furthermore, you said: "you had not properly read or understood my previous posts"

That's possible. If I am too dumb to understand your wise words the first time, could you be so kind to state again briefly in one or two sentences your point of view.

My point is that I am against the adoption of children by homosexual singles or couples because - with a high probability - it is contrary to the wishes and interests of the children as long as an alternative, i.e. an adoption by heterosexual couples, is available.

In regard to my argument, are you able to answer two simple questions:

(1) Are you for an adoption by homosexual singles or couples? Yes or No?

(2) If you are for it, why ?

24 January 2007 at 22:36  
Anonymous Colin said...

His Grace,

Thank you for this important information which confirms what I suspected but was afraid to ask directly. It is an indication of the danger of another religious war if the migration trend continues.

24 January 2007 at 22:39  
Anonymous timmy said...

Kris

"Cardnial Cormac Mc What'sits"

My Lord Cranmer I appeal to your grace to censure your communicant Kris for his impertinent and discourteous reference to His Eminence the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster Cormac Murphy-O'Connor. He is after all the spiritual head of over 1 million Catholics in England and deserves at least the same courtesy and respect we give to out separated brethren when represented by your Grace.

24 January 2007 at 22:43  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin

Firstly, I have stated on several occasions throughout this discussion that I am not in favour of adoption by homosexual couples. That point was clear from my first post. From the responses to my posts everyone seems to have understood this except you. I stated it blatantly on several occasions. That you failed to see that if simply proof that you were not reading my posts properly.

Secondly, at 10.40 you saw fit to agree with Lord Cranmer's opinion of Dominus Iesus. You saw fit to comment upon something you knew nothing about. For me that is the intellectual equivalent of someone attempting to provide an analysis of Hamlet without having taken the time to read the play. You interpret this as me giving you homework, and proceed to lecture me about the correct way to conduct a debate. How you think it is possible to interpret something without taking the time to read it first simply baffles me. I know that you are very much in awe of Lord Cranmer's intellectual capacities, and indeed they seem to be formidible, but I would have thought you would have wished to to form an opinion of your own by engaging with the actual material.

24 January 2007 at 23:22  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Colin,

Bob has made his position clear I feel, the position is that of the Catholic Church (correct me if I am wrong Bob). Adoption is available to a married man and wife meeting the adoption requirements of the CAA and the Law of the land. Adoption is available to single people meeting the same requirements although I would expect slightly more careful vetting and provision exercised in this case. Adoption is not available to same sex cohabiting couples or individuals with an 'active' social life centring on the proverbial sex, drugs and rock and roll; this would be an unsuitable environment to expose a child to.

Bobs references to documents are licit as it would be unreasonable and rude to reproduce them in full on His Graces Blog, would you not agree. However Bob seems to be saying that the issue of reading Dominus Iesus, a document of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on the Unicity and Salvific Universality of Jesus Christ and the Church is not in any way related to homosexuality and adoption. Lines, he thinks may have got a little crossed, however and I think this is important, I see no reference to your intelligence quotient on this Blog, no one has intimated, to use you own words, that you are "too dumb to understand".

I believe we, you and I (I presume also to include Bob) are not too far apart on our collective position in who would make suitable adoptive parents, but as in life there are complexities and rarely do they fall into "are you for or against". This is not the cop-out you may feel, the whole issue of homosexual adoption is a bolt of lightning for a church that thinks in centuries rather than years, you can expect a considered answer in, Oh I’d say the year 2257.

24 January 2007 at 23:31  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob and Recusant,

Obviously, we seem to agree on the adoption issue. Our disagreement started when I concluded from His Grace's 9:49 PM comment "the Catholic Adoption Agency admits that it already places children with single homosexuals" that the Catholic Church supports adoption by homosexuals. I didn't know were His Grace got the information from but normally he is well informed about religious matters. Therefore, I didn't and still don't see any reason to believe that the Catholic Adoption Agency does not place children with homosexuals.

Another point His Grace made was that the Catholic Church claims the monopoly for salvation and therefore it wouldn't be right from their point of view to deny the children the possibility of salvation by placing the children with couples of different faith.

I said that His Grace's view is logically consistent and the actions of the Catholic Church inconsistent with their own doctrine, again assuming that His Grace reported correctly the Catholic doctrine. Immediately, Bob started to lecture me that I first should read a certain document of the Catholic Church before opening my mouth. In my view this is a rather arrogant attitude. Bob could simply have said that my or His Grace's statement is incorrect and could have provided a reference as proof, preferably as a link so that everyone can check it out.

In regard to Bob's accusation that I am lecturing him about the right way to conduct a debate, I would like to point out that I am simply reminding him on the centuries old rules of the game already used in the debats of the Catholic scholastic scholars. We do not have to reinvent the wheel in this regard. Without acceptance or knowledge of the rules of - for example - the soccer game, it doesn't make any sense to discuss different opinions about who has won a certain soccer game. The same reasoning applies to intellectual debates.

Sorry but I am getting tired about so much useless discussions. But it was sure nice talking to you. Have a good night!

25 January 2007 at 00:21  
Anonymous Bob said...

Colin, frankly I'm too tired and frustrated to continue this senseless discussion with you. I've made my position abundantly clear. Everyone else seems to understand what I'm saying, even if they don't agree with me. I can therefore only conclude that the problem, whatever it is, lies with you.

As for providing you with a link - I provided you with the name of the document. I told you that all the Church's documents are available on the Vatican website. If you didn't have the initiative to to put two and two together on that one then that's not my problem.

Recusant and I provided, I think it's fair to say, quite a lot of counter arguments to Cranmer's claims about the Church and salvation. You chose for some reason to be blind to these. Again not my problem.

So either you are just not reading what either of us were saying or you're accepting everything Cranmer says as beyond doubt, which is odd for a man who claimed not to believe that any one man is infallible. Either way debating with you has been like being stoned to death with popcorn.

25 January 2007 at 00:54  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

good point your grace.. heavy activity on your blog one notices..

25 January 2007 at 05:57  
Anonymous Voyager said...

This whole issue arises from EU Directive 2004/113/EC of 13 December 2004 which I think should be read

EU

with its reference to 2. Gender mainstreaming shall be promoted in all sections of and activities under the Programme.

This is but the first stage on a path to bring the Westminster Assembly into conformity with EU Federal Law. I am surprised Frattini has not asked President Barroso to dismiss the British Cabinet for hesitation.

As for Kris....as a Non-Catholic let me discuss your charge of pederasty against The Roman Catholic Church as we discuss the unsuitability of Social Services Departments to be involved in anything after Victoria Climbie, Lauren Creed, Toni-Ann Byfield, et al and all the false allegations viz Orkney etc.

The Roman Church issued a Guidance in 1962 worldwide for screening of all candidates for seminaries. The US Church flushed with 1960s bonhomie ignored it completely and harvested a good crop of pederasts many of whom went on to notoriety and death from AIDS especially clustered in certain dioceses.

The bulk of the interference with minors and juniors involved pederasty. What point you choose to make by reference to this is unclear. One might conclude that neither the Catholic Church nor Social Services Departments should be anywhere near children; or that pederasts should be purged from working with children and profiled. Currently the whole population has to pay Capita for a Persilschein from the Criminal Records Bureau before working with children - and must apply for each separate activity - viz. a doctor having one to work with children in hospital must obtain a second clearance to work with children in a nursery

This screens the whole population rather than profiling the problematic but does not cover foreigners - so you can come from Bulgaria or Zimbabwe and work in a nursery because clearance is not possible so you are presumed clear.

The whole situation is farcical. We are talking in the case of the Catholic Adoption agencies with "problematic children" which i suppose means they may have been "abused" sexually, morally, physically; or themselves be abusers with nout without criminal records.

It is good someone like the Catholic Church takes on these issues and spends the £20.000 per child it costs to prepare adoption cases....

25 January 2007 at 07:37  
Blogger Cranmer said...

My Lord Cranmer I appeal to your grace to censure your communicant Kris for his impertinent and discourteous reference to His Eminence the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster Cormac Murphy-O'Connor.

Mr Timmy,

Welcome to His Grace's august blog of intelligence and erudition.

His Grace is immensely fond of Mr Kris, and always inclined to give the benefit of any doubt. It may be, on this occasion, that Mr Kris genuinely had a few wires crossed, and thought the Cardinal to be an obscure Scot, and simply could not recall his name. In these circumstances, no censure is called for, since free speech admits of disrespect just as much as it admits of respect; His Grace could therefore no more censure Mr Kris for an apparent discourtesy than he could or would censure you for your adulation of 'His Eminence'.

Mr Voyager,

His Grace accords perfectly, and lauds the Roman Catholic Church for its work in this area. It is for this reason the he exhorts it to continue exactly as it has always done, and, as he has said, let any accusation of 'homophobia' be brought to the courts.

25 January 2007 at 07:42  
Anonymous Voyager said...

'homophobia' is not a specified offence in law since it does not exist but is simply a spoof on the DSM-IV Catalogue of the American Psychiatric Association which was inveigled in 1973 into dropping homosexuality from its catalogue of personality disorders...and the people who pushed that particular issue out of the catalogue have tried ever since to replace it with a mirror-image "personality disorder" as is usual when such campaigns get up a head of steam.

Not having succeeded with the APA....yet...they have assiduously worked through the law schools and universities to get the Secular Theology of Jurisprudence to enforce Secular Conformity on pain of unishment and torture at the hands of the Court of Media Propaganda...much as every clique in history has sought to entrench its position through temporal power and punishment.

In a detached sort of way it is amusing to watch the ants destroy one mound of soil to move each granule to another location and erect yet another mound of soil more to their satisfaction.

I suppose Life is full of such events, minor ruptures in the skein of human existence as their ability to argue over which way the boiled-egg should be sliced causes great consternation rather as Jonathan Swift described.

Meanwhile in the big wide universe not one single planet changes its orbit because some men prefer to associate intimately with some other men in whatever constellation gives them pleasure; but they cannot re-order the universe any more than Canute could indulge his courtiers' sycophancy. It is that very Evolution we hear so much about that determined wombs went with females and that human genetic transmission went through wombs.

The most amusing part of all this is the so-called genetic predisposition to being qua an "homosexual" which is the basis of this "diversity" binge. While nature gave melanin a role in pigmentation and sickle-cell anaemia a genetic predisposition to non-white hosts; it did not generate a "gay gene" no matter how fraudulently people attempt to propagate the concept. The amusing bit is that were one to claim genetic compnents to intelligence and race; or gender and intelligence; or predisposition to criminality; it would be an affront to liberal nostrums - but the desire to claim that a form of behaviour is innate and distinct is so very presumptuous as to be quite amusing.

25 January 2007 at 08:51  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Oh and how do we reconcile the heading of this thread Catholic Church blackmails Government over implementation of an EU Directive dated 13 December, 2004 as finalised in a Policy Document of October 2006; with the previous assertions that the Roman Catholic Church was setting the agenda in the EU ?

Surely in that case the Policy Programme on Diversity to run 2006-2010 to make our EU economy sizzle by removing the hindrances to a full-flowering of diversity in our workforces, would not have seen the light of day ...let alone be being implemented in 27 EU countries

25 January 2007 at 10:32  
Anonymous Ulster Man said...

Sorry to have been away for a while.

In the words of Rowan Williams: "rights of conscience cannot be made subject to legislation, however well-meaning".

But the Catholic church is blackmailing, Voyager, and using the media to make that very clear indeed. If you do this, we'll do this, is nothing but posturing blackmail. To the detriment of adoptee children.

25 January 2007 at 11:20  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Not at all Ulster Man, not at all. It is saying that it cannot take the risk of being sued and letting the judiciary engage in its peculiar fancies by becoming a test case costing hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Even Buckinghamshire County Council has refused to let a school take this risk over wearing a niqab in school.

The horrendous costs of defending against litigation where the Govt's shiny new Trevor Phillips' Council of the Witchfinder General - aka Commission for Equality & Human Rights - decides to start looking for test cases is something i think few people want to chance.


The future is like the German Democratic Republic - eventually all political parties will fuse into a Socialist Unity Party and all organisations will be oriented with the State - Gleichschaltung.

It seems the course is set and little will change matters. The British Govt is in fact powerless against the EU Commission and this is but a foretaste of what is coming into British Law

25 January 2007 at 11:35  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Ulster man

What ever you position on the Catholic Church, We have an organisation here that has provided child Adoption and fostering for over 100 years in this country, goodness knows how many children it has found good loving homes for over the years, tens of thousands I shouldn’t wonder. I don't think you can argue they have not served the country exceptionally well, you would think people would be writing letters of congratulation and gratitude for the efforts of such laudable people but no, along come a bunch of latter day Nazis, enlightened by Kant, Nietzsche and the monkey man theorist who say think like we think, do like we do, be assimilated or else, and its the Catholic Churches fault that they don't. I may not be of the reformed faith but I would pour scorn on anyone who would deny articles or provision for any associated lay organisation, which had similarly provided such a charitable and beneficial service to the community and fore shame on anyone who would likewise deny such provision. You can read my previous post above regarding who will remove funding from whom.

25 January 2007 at 13:04  
Anonymous timmy said...

Your Grace,

You post has enlightened me that Kris did not intend any defamation by his inventive address, he obviously mistook O'Connor for Mc What'sits, how easy it is to mistake an Irish name for a Scottish one and the keys are so close together on the keyboard. I know I get confused myself especially with black people, as they all look the same to me, I trust that you are not inconvenienced with this well known and unfortunate condition of ignoremus illigitimae.

25 January 2007 at 13:06  
Blogger Little Black Sambo said...

Allowing Christians to run an adoption agency is offensive to Falconer, Hain, and the other gangsters because it entails illegal discrimination in the provision of a public service. The word "public" is a giveaway: anything public must now be ipso facto the preserve of the Government. Children are now public property, belonging to the State, so the Government determines who shall have "access" to them. England is becoming a horrible horrible country.

25 January 2007 at 13:21  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When the Sexual Orientation Regulations come into force, even if Catholic adoption agencies do obtain an exemption, the Local Authorities in whose care the children are and which all have diversity policies in place, will find it difficult to justify using them. Since the agencies' supply will thus dry up, the Catholic Church's threat to close them down looks rather empty (not to say petulant)

25 January 2007 at 13:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeeezz Guys

You think YOU get upset with my reference to Cardinial Cormac Murphy O'What'sit?

Imagine how our Muslim brethern feel when I ferer to their learned imam of Walthamstow (remember his encounter with John Reid?) as

Abu Issajerk.

If the shoe fits...

25 January 2007 at 14:09  
Anonymous Voyager said...

how easy it is to mistake an Irish name for a Scottish one

Yes especially when referring to an Englishman

25 January 2007 at 14:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

in a lighter vein, see Matt's cartoon in the Telegraph today.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/graphics/2007/01/25/matt.gif

25 January 2007 at 16:16  
Anonymous Oiznop said...

Things in Scotland are a little bit different on this . The Executive has given a commitment to the Catholic hierarchy and Scottish adoption law as it stands would allow Catholic adoption agencies to refer gays to other agencies.

Why should it be different in England?

25 January 2007 at 18:53  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Why should it be different in England?

because tacking Left is the way to be Gordon's Deputy after Blair goes to California

How the Cabinet is split: Ministers backing adoption "compromise":

Tony Blair

Ruth Kelly, Communities Secretary

John Hutton, Work and Pensions Secretary

Hazel Blears, Labour Chairman

Ministers opposing exemptions for the Catholic Church :

Alan Johnson, Education Secretary

Patricia Hewitt, Health Secretary

Jack Straw, Commons leader

Peter Hain, N Ireland Secretary

Tessa Jowell, Culture Secretary

Hilary Benn, International Development Secretary

David Miliband, Environment Secretary

Douglas Alexander, Transport Secretary

And those undeclared:

Gordon Brown, Chancellor; John Reid, Home Secretary; Des Browne, Defence Secretary

Jacqui Smith, Chief Whip


and Labour will promise the Catholics anything in Scotland prior to May 3rd just to keep West Scotland Catholics from voting SNP as their Cardinal invited them to do

25 January 2007 at 19:56  
Anonymous Colin said...

His Grace,

I beg your pardon but I cannot see any blackmailing in the fact that the Catholic Church refuses to obey the illiberal laws of the government and the EU. The separation of state and religious power is a good European tradition because it provides a counter-balance against the abuse of power by worldly rulers.

“All religions united with government are more or less inimical to liberty. All, separated from government, are compatible with liberty.” Henry Clay (1777-1852) U. S. Senator, Speaker of the House of Representatives.

As far as I can see, to resist illiberal laws of the government is a virtue and not blackmailing. Without such resistance, little black sambo's prediction will soon be reality: "Children are now public property, belonging to the State, so the Government determines who shall have "access" to them."

In my view, it is good that the Catholic Church resists the EU Directive and it would strengthen the credibility of the CoE if the latter were willing to join the fight of the Catholic Church against the dictatorship of PC.

25 January 2007 at 22:22  
Anonymous Colin said...

Re: "I can therefore only conclude that the problem, whatever it is, lies with you."

Bob,

It appears as if you are a bit slow on the uptake. I told you several times that - if you want to make an argument -you have to make it yourself. But you continue to gabble that I am not permit to talk about the topic unless I have read theological texts of the Vatican.

Your kind of argument is in complete agreement with those of Islamic believers. When we had a chance on this and on other blogs to discuss with them, the debate always ended with their reference to the Quran and that we were not permitted to talk about Islam because we hadn't read the Quran.

It's always the same story with people fervently believing in something - whether socialism, environmentalism, islamism or catholicism - at some point in the debate they refuse to apply the rules of logic and retreat instead to the received wisdom of some higher authority such as Marx, Greenpeace, the Prophet or the Pope.

No wonder that Richard Dawkins, one of the best contemporary scientists in Great Britain, and this country has many excellent brains, said: "Highly intelligent people are mostly atheists. Not a single member of either house of Congress admits to being an atheist. It just doesn't add up. Either they're stupid, or they're lying. And have they got a motive for lying? Of course they've got a motive! Everybody knows that an atheist can't get elected."

Bob, you seem to be an honest man.

25 January 2007 at 23:11  
Anonymous Nicholas Bennett said...

As a newcomer to Your Grace's blog may I say what a pleasure it has been to read the erudite discourse on this blog. There is little I can add to what has already been written by Bob and The Recusant.

Unlike 99% of the media where because of laziness (and in many cases deliberate distortion) of the Catholic Church's position on homosexuality has been misrepresented. The Church believes that the homosexual act is instrinctly evil. St Paul said "Condemn the sin, forgive the sinner". The Church recognises that some people have homosexual desires but like the desire that some hetrosexuals have for other men's wives the Church requires that those with such desires should recognise that where they to act on those desires they would have commited a sin.

Those who have sinned and who are truely contrite will find forgiveness and salvation.

26 January 2007 at 00:55  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, you've misunderstood me from the beginning, so as far as I'm concerned there's no point in continuing a dialogue with you. I'm not continuing to engage in circular discussions with you, so you'll be spared any more of my gabbling.

26 January 2007 at 01:07  
Anonymous Voyager said...

No wonder that Richard Dawkins, one of the best contemporary scientists in Great Britain,

Absolute and utter rubbish. Dawkins is an overblown narcissist who spefcialised in mathematical modelling of animal movements and received funding from another Microsoft Stock Option Millionaire his Károly SIMONYI to propagate his views unencumbered by any teaching responsibilities. In an era when Oxford University would have a Bird's Eye Professor or a Manchester United Professorship if the money flowed, one cannot take Dawkins too seriously.

Alister McGrath has already exposed the shallowness of Dawkins reading and theological grasp, but we live in an age where Biology is seen as "Science" whereas pre-Crick & Watson it was a branch of librarianship cataloguing samples.

Maybe Dawkins should debate a proper Scientist like Physicist John Polkinghorne. Dawkins simply panders to prejudice and cultivates a Reader's Digest clientele brought up on Condensed Books

26 January 2007 at 07:06  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Nicholas Bennett,

His Grace welcomes you to his august blog of intelligence and erudition. He also has been delighted with the level of academic discourse upon this topic, which exceeds that of all other blogs.

St Paul said "Condemn the sin, forgive the sinner".

No, he did not. This phrae appears nowhere in the New Testament. It is an invention of psycho-theology in order that the sinner would not feel condemned by his sin.

26 January 2007 at 08:46  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Voyager,

Oh thank goodness Voyager, I thought I was in a majority of one. Amazed at why no one else could see that the constant stream of conceited arrogant bile spewing from Dawkins was self evidently expectorant populist psychobabble, barely disguising his wish to be adulated as the new high priest of his own particular brand of secular enlightenment. Scientist, the man wouldn’t recognise empiric evidence if it slapped him in the face.

Every time he is interviewed by a submissive, ingratiating BBC toady I just want to curl up and vomit, and then I get the overwhelming urge to shout "The man has no clothes on, look everyone he is naked", It’s not good to shout at the telly!

How is it that people blindly accept "ologies" as science? Opinion shaped by fashion, culture and prejudice and unquestionably assumed to be science. What qualifies the so-called opinion formers to define science when most could not slide a fag paper between a theory and a hypothesis, and why do people accept it without question? Because some bloke with a degree said so on telly, where have all the critical faculties gone?

If you can find the time I recommend you download this MP3, its 18 mins long but worth ever second, I would value your opinion. (It’s not a bit of papist propaganda)

Download the MP3 file here:

http://catholiceducation.org/articles/science/quinndawkins2.MP3

26 January 2007 at 12:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Islam appears to be to have become to the 21st-century United Kingdom what Roman Catholicism was to 16th-century England.

Michale Gove gave a speech the other day about the emergence of an anti Islamic intelligentsia. I would say the amount of intelligence is somewhat varied but your Grace is right , in my opinion . I have wondered if there was not a need for an enemy before the enemy was found, a sense of the centre not holding .

Voyager I see you are being nasty about Richard Dawkins again. The original Selfish gene essay was tremendous and I always enjoy his writing on Neo Darwinism. His thoughts about religion somehow miss the point but he does demolish numerous arguments for the existence of God , that have been made, quite effectively. I think many people would be surprised that there was any need for such a book.


I have raised problems with the "god theory" here before and not found exposure "proper scientists " has furnished any reasonable answers
I recall mentioning Bertrand Russels point about the sequence of God and morals being a self contradictory equation. Your response was that Bertrand Russel was a poor example of a human being .
Your approach to Richard dawkins is not disimiliar and one cannot help wondering why there is this determination to play the man not the ball.
Richard Dawkins may be many things but his thoughts on various metaphysical contructs were not new so it is irrelevant,
Incidentally why should there not be a Birds Eye Professor . I have to earn a living. Why shouldn`t he. Are you free from the filthy squalid busines then , if so you are a lucky man ?

Recusant - Yes yes but what have you to say in response. How angry you are? My son of 2 makes a similiar point often.

26 January 2007 at 12:25  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Incidentally why should there not be a Birds Eye Professor . I have to earn a living. Why shouldn`t he. Are you free from the filthy squalid busines then , if so you are a lucky man ?

because I dislike my alma mater kow-towing to Wafic Said and assorted moneybags like Mr Simonyi who has absolutely no connection with my alma mater. As for filthy squalid business that is precisely my area - you might call it commerce

Dawkins is wrong. Biology is barely a Science. Physics is the hard science. As for Dawkins he knows very little about religion, and is singularly ill-informed. He cannot even construct a proof of Evolution but requires leaps of faith to accept discrete data as sequential.

You cannot find a Proof of God - that is the very point. Likewise Dawkins cannot prove whether Quantum Theory is correct and in 1900 any student could have disproved it. Biology appeals to Media because it is a woman's subject and many in the Media have studied it at A-Level or University whereas far fewer have a background in Physics.

Betrand Russell you seem to admire, but his field was Mathematics. Why I should have regard for Bertrand Russell's opinion on any subject but Mathematics is most curious. What was his opinion of the Wankel engine ? I similarly don't need to hold him in great regard on Monetary Theory. His opinion in these areas Colin is simply as well-informed as your own so you do not need to hold up a Betrand Russell banner - it is just the same as holding up a Colin banner. Russell is irrelevant to that issue

26 January 2007 at 12:39  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Incidentally why should there not be a Birds Eye Professor . I have to earn a living. Why shouldn`t he. Are you free from the filthy squalid busines then , if so you are a lucky man ?

I also do not see why the University needs any more Chairs - it should stop expanding and start being focused and cease its slide into mediocrity

26 January 2007 at 12:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Commerce eh Voyager , I amazed you have the time . I really cannot imagine there is any need to construct a proof or evolution but as it amuses me to imagine there may be creationists lurking at the periphery of sanity ……….. Fossil evidence , direct empirical results ( usually with fruit flies), The predictive power of genetic theory and its use and the observation of animals there likeness and familial relationships . take this together and evolution is about a proven as anything can be .
Biology does lend itself to writing and image for obvious reasons .Physics is by comparison less entertaining . Religious people , however, are attracted to physics because sub atomic physics is so strange and counter intuitive. This lends credence to other theories about fundamental truths that are strange and counter intuitive by loose association. The conclusion that because something is odd and unlikely sounding it is more likely to be true would however be a false one .I wish Christians would stop this silly flirtation although I don`t know if this was your intention voyager.
Charles Darwin Sir Peter Medwar…mm.. . I cannot think of a biologist who is woman off hand can you?. I am bit defeated at your allegation of effeminacy do you mean because it concerns living things? Personally I am a prodigiously attractive specimen of gloriously hirsute testosterone charged maleness…(?) A further proof of evolution as Mrs N sometimes remarks.
The early 20th century saw Newtonian physics superseded by Einstein`s theories and this is sometimes taken as evidence that nothing is ever “true”. There is a sense that this is right. We shall not, however, discover that the Sun revolves around the earth though no matter how many years pass. There is a more important sense then in which error is discovered and truth is established. Otherwise statements of nonsense would be of equal value as statements of sense . I find it suspicious whenever anyone seeks to imply that this might be the case.
Bertrand Russell, who I do not admire, was a mathematician concerned with set theory and logic . This will form part of any philosophy course as nowadays , would linguistic theory building on the work of Noam Chomsky… he seems a reasonable person to quote when discussing logical problem then.
He made one point which was that God cannot be responsible for Moral Laws as he either picked them arbitrarily or the predated him. In other words it is not permissible property of morality to have been invented.
The other traditional “Proof” was for an unmoving first mover. This was in the days before the concept of an infinite sequence had been arrived at.
This is the sort of thing that R Dawkins re-heats. I have a feeling that he is missing something important but in its own terms it works and clears away some cob webs.

I am not Colin and were I to say “I cannot prove I do not disappear when others leave the room , that is the very point !..I would be swiftly fitted with a snug straightjacket in faux suede and admitted to the bijou cell that would be my future home ……
Squeeze as hard as I may , I can extract not a drop of meaning from “you cannot find a proof…”

Oh well , time for some of that demeaning and sordid trade …..

26 January 2007 at 14:07  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Newmania,

I foresee a brilliant future for your exceptionally talented, intelligent son there, with insight like this he is bordering on genius, get him down for Ox-Bridge straight away. BTW there is more despair than anger in my rant but what can you do, my offspring tend to vanish when I vent my spleen, on the other hand you are a captive audience.

There is no measurable scientific proof of God, or not in any way that would satisfy Dawkins and his ilk. A Christian of any denomination only has his faith, informed by wisdom, intelligence, reason and observation. Oh and a belief that the New Testament Gospels are not lies. You can take it or leave it, but I think for the don’t-know camp Pascals Wager is food for thought.

26 January 2007 at 14:49  
Anonymous Voyager said...

He made one point which was that God cannot be responsible for Moral Laws as he either picked them arbitrarily or the predated him

Deconstruct that sentence as I may I struggle to find meaning in it.

were I to say “I cannot prove I do not disappear when others leave the room , that is the very point !

Berkeley had one answer to that, but I ask you what "proof" we have that Bertrand Russell was who you claim he was; or that Plato existed ? Struggle as I may I am not confident that Newmania is not Colin and both do not cohabit in some place far removed from Islington.

I suppose the Empiricists had an answer but my Scepticism leads me astray. As for but as it amuses me to imagine there may be creationists lurking at the periphery of sanity I make no comment as I do not subscribe to your ideas; I merely state that the "fit" of a theory leaves it as nothing more than a "working hypothesis" rather than an evidential proof of eternal standing which is what religious sceptics seek as a "Proof of God" - that is a Proof Eternal from the Beginning of Time to its very End...and no religion claims that such proof could possibly be produced by any man.

That is why Dawkins amuses me - for it is he who seeks to use Occam's Razor to "prove" the non-existence of The Deity and I am not concerned

26 January 2007 at 15:07  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am “don’t know” recusant because I find nothing to explain the most important things in my life such as love and loyalty and the knowledge of right and wrong. One is unhappy with materialism say. From there to accepting that Christ was the risen son of god who died on the cross to save me from my sins is a damn long way though.
Regrettably churches in my area are not happy for you to sit in doubt , requiring ecstatic direct contact with the spirit of the Lord with guitars , shouting and frequent communing with strangers. I shall not return.

26 January 2007 at 15:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Voyager I am delighted to be confused with Colin who is a remarkably well informed contributor. I `m afraid I cannot claim any such compendious knowledge and I doubt he will be similarly flattered.
The problem of morality not allowing for the possibility of invention is this ,
If there is no morality then it would be possible to pick any action as good , Murder for example .This would be an arbitrary choice and so morality would be a worthless thing .If “God “ chose the good things to be good then he clearly cannot be responsible for morality. Hope that’s clear .A metaphysical “Proof “ of God’s existence was at one time the existence of morality , and the presumption that it must have a source. We can see that this proof is illusory.


I have dealt with your attempt to demonstrate that all statements are equally nonsensical and remembering this sort of thinking from my school days it allowed a pleasant moment of Proustian nostalgia .Provisional theories and the possibility of revision do not mean that error and sense are impossible .The earth will never be discovered to be flat. Never. Eternally never. It does not help your case to adopt a scorched earth policy towards any attempt to think.. Tempting though it may be ..

I do not expect a proof of God . I only say that Christians have offered metaphysical proofs of god and all those proofs have collapsed before modern philosophical enquiry.

I am not overly concerned myself and this is what I was hinting at when I said myself that there is something missing. In fact the chasmic size of the absence makes rather the reverse of the point Dawkins intends.

26 January 2007 at 15:49  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Newmania, I spent some time reading a great many arguments for my Philosophy degree and am pleased that most were less confused or confusing than your own rendition of those same posits.

I confess I do not follow your train of thought which I suspect tumbles out without being structured.

You state I only say that Christians have offered metaphysical proofs of god and all those proofs have collapsed before modern philosophical enquiry.

I don't know if this is true. I do not know who these Christians are. Like yourself I have no truck with what you call churches in your area, but I accept the Church of England of the 1559 Prayer Book and the 1662 revision, and find anything else strange and eccentric.

Thus there are myriads of persons calling themselves Christian espousing such notions as Replacement theology I find nonsensical and I am sceptical as to their nomenclature.

The basic principle Jesus Christ imbued us with and the reason for The Holy Ghost as his legacy, was that we find our individual way and that Faith be the basis. It is Belief not Knowledge, and it is not a necessity to convince anyone else of anything. You have but one certainty in your life, and each can choose his own path to his own end, but Jesus Christ offered redemption to sinners and rewards to faith.

There is no need to prove anything, there is no guarantee of winning a prize, what is freely given on God's Grace cannot be won by some mathematical proof. It is frankly absurd. Pointless beyond a certain intellectual amusement.

As for Colin - your reification is as dubious as that of Newmania - and it is only my indulgence that treats you as if you have corporeal identity beyond the pixels on the screen

26 January 2007 at 16:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Voyager-You will be relieved to hear that your suspicions are unfounded and your bragging unnecessary. I know you are a bit of a clever clogs, and I commend your tactical incomprehension .

Colin is real and I am real ; we are separately real. I have no doubt with your subtle grasp of Christian teaching the separation of Newmania and Colin will be simple to squares with the singularity of Newmania / Colin

The rest of what you say makes sense to me

26 January 2007 at 17:04  
Anonymous jelly bean said...

great! now we have 100 comments!

26 January 2007 at 17:24  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

I am glad you reacted as I have expected. We want to push the number of comments on this thread beyond the mark of 100 which was His Grace' highest number so far, don't we. Since it is so much fun to discuss with advocats of ignorance, let's start:

You said: "Dawkins is wrong. Biology is barely a Science."

Obviously, you are completely ignorant of the fast progress in the field of biology since the 3.4 billions base pairs of the Human Genome have been completely sequenced in 2003 for about 300 million dollars. The biology of each species is determined by its genes (i.e. genome). Genes consist of DNA and DNA of base pairs. The sequence of base pairs determines the structure of the proteins which are the building blocks responsible for the functioning of the body and the human mind via the brain. Recently, the genome of many other species has also been sequenced permitting the calculation of the exact number of base pair diffences between different species and the reconstruction of human evolution. The sequence of different species can be found here. The cost for sequencing a species's genome has dropped from 300 million to 100 thousand dollars and is expected to fall to 1 thousand dollars. In about 10-15 years, the sequence of every species will be known and it is possible to do so for every individual who can afford 1 thousand dollars. Biology has such an enormous amount of data, that the scientists in the new field of bioinformatics are busy for decades to analyse everything in detail. The endless stream of publications from this new field have all confirmed Darwin. Some of the journals are freely available on the internet. The theory of evolution is supported by an incredible amount of data, even more so than astrophysics.

You should be proud of the enormous achievements of British scientists in this field. The structure of DNA has been discovered in Great Britain and English scientists at the Sanger Institute in Cambridge played a major role in the Human Genome Project. The Wellcome Trust in the UK is a major funding agency for genome research and is now funding with £91 million drugs discovery based on genomic science to develop new drugs against cancer etc. The Wellcome Trust has also an interesting website about biological evolution, the tree of life, cultural evolution, and the criticism by different world religions including Islam. Here for download.

"Physics is the hard science."

That's correct. However, physics doesn't prove the existence of supernatural beings, i.e. Gods.

"As for Dawkins he knows very little about religion"

There is nothing to know except that its foundation, i.e. the existence of supernatural beings, has never been proven.

"and is singularly ill-informed. He cannot even construct a proof of Evolution but requires leaps of faith to accept discrete data as sequential."

These are bold assertions considering the state of genomic science and evolution (see above).

"You cannot find a Proof of God - that is the very point."

Precisely, that is the point: you cannot find a proof of God. And you cannot find a proof of martians, for vodoo, astrology and thousand other things in which people believe. Does this mean that martians exist?

Since you do not accept Richard Dawkins, maybe Sam Harris is more to your taste. He wrote in his book Letter to a Christian Nation:

"Nonbelievers like myself stand beside you, dumbstruck by the Muslim hordes who chant death to whole nations of the living. But we stand dumbstruck by you as well -- by your denial of tangible reality, by the suffering you create in service to your religious myths, and by your attachment to an imaginary God."

26 January 2007 at 17:59  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Jelly Bean,

His Grace's blog is for expressions of intelligence and erudition; not for inane observations of the banal.

Now we have 102 comments; almost on a par with Islam at Alton Towers, which gained 107 comments.

26 January 2007 at 18:04  
Anonymous bob said...

Belief in God can neither be conclusively proven nor disproven. As much as Richard Dawkins may have tried to dismantle the traditonal proofs for God's existence, he still has not be able to conclusively disprove God's existence. In other words he, and countless others, have been unable to put QED at the end of a proposition proving that God does not exist. So to say that because an absolute proof for God's existence cannot be presented and therefore God does not exist is rather meaningless as the opposite can equally be said to be true, i.e an absolute proof that God does not exist cannot be presented and therefore God does exist.

26 January 2007 at 18:11  
Anonymous Miss Jelly Bean said...

CRANMER YOU NAUGHTY LITTLE BOY!!! I'M A MISS, NOT A MR!

I'll be back later... now's my nap time.

26 January 2007 at 18:19  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

Thanks a lot, I appreciate your courtesy, i.e. "you'll be spared any more of my gabbling"

Our disagreement was only about your lack of courtesy to provide the evidence for your claims which you said can be found on the internet somewhere on the Vatican's website.

Since you know the precise location of the texts for your claims on the Vatican website, it wouldn't have cost you more than 1 minute of your time to use CTRL-C and CTRL-V on your keybord to mark, copy and paste the relevant texts as well as the address of the website. That's not only a matter of courtesy but also of proof for your claims.

However, reminding me at the arrogance of many Catholic priests, you considered yourself too noble for providing the requested evidence but wanted me and the other readers interested in the discussion to start googling and searching on the Vatican's extensive websites. In defending your lack of courtesy with a large number comments, you wasted much more time than by simply using copy and paste. And to top it all, you finally said that the problem was with me.

26 January 2007 at 18:23  
Anonymous Bob said...

Colin - my disagreement with you is that you did not bother to read what I actually wrote. You continually misrepresented what I said. You got it into your head that I said things that I had not. You took a suggestion that you read something before you form an opinion on it as intellectually beneath you and proof of my personal and religious arrogance. You took two seperate discussions and somehow formed them into a single entity in a manner which simply astounds me.

In short, Colin, I couldn't care less what you think about me. Your opinion matters less to me than I could possibly described. I've cared more about about pebbles I picked up on the beach that I do about your opinions of me and my faith. I've killed flies whose opinions of me mattered more to me than yours does.

26 January 2007 at 18:31  
Anonymous Colin said...

Newmania,

Thanks for your support and your kind words, i.e. "I am delighted to be confused with Colin who is a remarkably well informed contributor. I `m afraid I cannot claim any such compendious knowledge and I doubt he will be similarly flattered."

I am similarily flattered because you are using logic and your brain very well. That's all I am asking for. Concerning knowledge, everybody has his field of expertise and I am quite sure that there are fields where you know much more than I do.

Voyager has a compendious knowledge and he is a lovely chap, very dear to me. It's true, although he might not believe me. He provides us with many insights and (listen Bob!) links as proofs for his claims. His religious feelings are very strong so that he feels the need to defend his convictions at all costs, including the abandonment of logic.

Don't worry, His Grace, about the 107 mark. Voyagers reactions to the latter statement will push us much beyond 107.

26 January 2007 at 18:38  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, as you've shown the neediness of a primary school child in this regard here are the links you so desperately crave -

English http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000806_dominus-iesus_en.html

German http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000806_dominus-iesus_ge.html

Latin
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000806_dominus-iesus_lt.html

26 January 2007 at 18:47  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

You didn't keep your promise. That's a sin, Bob! But I shall forgive you. Your promise was "you'll be spared any more of my gabbling"

His Grace,

Please forgive me. Did blogging turn me into another Mission Impossible? Heaven forbid! I shall stop now. We have past the line of 107 and got the record. Thanks for the interesting topic. What was it all about? Oh yes, homosexuality. Well, nothing excites people more than a little attack.

Bob,

Please forgive me if I hurt your feelings.

"I've cared more about about pebbles I picked up on the beach that I do about your opinions of me and my faith. I've killed flies whose opinions of me mattered more to me than yours does."

Is that consistent with the Christian faith to love your neighbour as yourself?

I guess there is a little Taliban in all of us.

26 January 2007 at 18:49  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

Thanks a lot for the links. That's very kind of you. And thanks also for providing it only after we have passed the 107 mark. Very clever of you, indeed. :-)

When I pushed the browser's button for "print preview", it displayed 21 pages. That's a lot of stuff to read. The search button didn't find anything about homosexuality or about adoption in this document. Could you please help the primary school child in me once again by telling me which part is relevant for our discussion about homosexuality and adoption?

Thanks in advance!

26 January 2007 at 18:59  
Anonymous bob said...

None of it is immediately relevant to the issue of homosexuality - which is more or less the point I've been making for a long time Colin. This was in relation to a different discussion. I quoted a document which dealt with the issue of homosexual unions (as you're quite fond of links, and feel it too strenuous to do any legwork on these things yourself, you may find it here http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20030731_homosexual-unions_en.html )
The document Dominus Iesus was quoted when Cranmer brought up the point about Catholic agencies letting Muslim couples adopt children. He believed that the Catholic Church taught that only those within the Catholic Church were to be saved by God, and therefore to allow these children to be adopted was morally wrong. Dominus Iesus, among other things, stated that this was not, in fact, what the Church taught.

As I pointed out on several occasions Colin, you fused to seperate discussions into one.

As for consistency with my faith I am called to love you Colin, I am not called to like you. Liking is an emotion, love is a choice. Love is willing only what is truly best for the person morally, spiritually, intellectually and personally. This is my will for you. Liking you is beside the point, so it is completely in keeping with my faith.

26 January 2007 at 19:27  
Blogger Cranmer said...

I've killed flies whose opinions of me mattered more to me than yours does.

This thread had produced some of the most excellent ripostes that His Grace has ever seen; he has indeed been highly amused. He thanks all of his communicants for their intelligent and erudite musings, especially Mr Voyager, Mr Colin, Mr Bob, and Mr Recusant. We do not all have to agree, but is not honest and frank religio-political discourse a breath of fresh air in a world of inane political pap?

It is interesting to observe that those topics which excite His Grace's communicants most are Islam and homosexuality. It is a pity that there is nothing which combines the two...

His Grace is not, however, about to play to the gallery. He has much more to impart on less engaging topics, and he guards against playing on the weaknesses and foibles of the public. His Grace is no advertiser or salesman, and his position does not depend on selling comfort. Sophists, salesmen, and politicians are on a par, and 'popular' leaders are devoid of true knowledge, as are the vast majority of the people they profess to lead.

26 January 2007 at 19:47  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

Thank you for the first link which confirms your claim that the Catholic Church does not preach a monopoly of salvation. Now, we are getting somewhere in our discussion. The Vatican wrote:

"Therefore, these separated Churches and communities as such, though we believe they suffer from defects, have by no means been deprived of significance and importance in the mystery of salvation. For the spirit of Christ has not refrained from using them as means of salvation which derive their efficacy from the very fullness of grace and truth entrusted to the Catholic Church."

Does the last part mean that the Catholic Church has a higher efficacy of salvation or how is it to be interpreted?

The same link also confirms your second claim, namely that salvation is also possible for children adopted by other religions (e.g. a couple of Islamists). Here the evidence:

"VI. THE CHURCH AND THE OTHER RELIGIONS IN RELATION TO SALVATION

For those who are not formally and visibly members of the Church, “salvation in Christ is accessible by virtue of a grace... However, .. it is clear that it would be contrary to the faith to consider the Church as one way of salvation alongside those constituted by the other religions...If it is true that the followers of other religions can receive divine grace, it is also certain that objectively speaking they are in a gravely deficient situation in comparison with those who, in the Church, have the fullness of the means of salvation."


In summary, salvation is less efficient for non-Catholic Christians and less probable for others such as believers in Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, Jews, paganism, and atheism. Catholics travel, so to speak, first class to Heaven, protestants second class, and the rest is on foot. I like this doctrine. It has room for tolerance.

Your second link about the adoption of children by homosexual couples also supports your claim that the Catholic Church is opposing it:

"Allowing children to be adopted by persons living in such unions would actually mean doing violence to these children, in the sense that their condition of dependency would be used to place them in an environment that is not conducive to their full human development. This is gravely immoral..

In conclusion, you have been right on all accounts. It seems that we have to beg His Grace to study the theology of the Catholic Church more carefully before lauching his attacks. Finally, the debate demonstrates the usefulness of providing evidence for one's claims in the form of quotes and links. It makes life so much easier for those interested in the truth.

I also would like to thank His Grace, Voyager, Bob, Recusant, Newmania, Little Black Sambo and others for this interesting discussion. I learned something new. And for this, I am most grateful.

BTW, Bob, I like you and all the others here on this erudite blog even if they don't share my opinion or compare me to flies. :-)

26 January 2007 at 22:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

. BOB-Love is willing only what is truly best for the person morally, spiritually, intellectually and personally. This is my will for you. Liking you is beside the point.


Bob that is a faintly sinister sophistry I imagine the Gulag torturers would have been able to sign up to that. Indeed such a belief will clearly encourage inhumane actions . Love is generally a living emotion not a dusty and somewhat conveniently expressed duty. Perhaps you have experienced this emotion in your life .There are many kinds of love and I would like a word that was shorn of some of its romantic connotations which date to the period of "Courtly Love " as celebrated in French Medieval Romances. If this is one then it is unlikely to please anyone other than the person claiming to possess it.It would in short be honest at least to admit that you do not love everyone .An unreasonable expectation in any case. You have my leave to withhold this love you give so generously and I will endeavour to struggle along somehow.

I am not a great fan of Richard Dawkins other than as a popular science writer but he does attempt to show that the god theory is an unattractive one. If we can see that there is no function for a god to give life ,provide a moral structure and so on then we must surely prefer the theory that has less assumptions . That there is no god.
One of the problems with allowing an exception on religious grounds is at once that precedent is established then any number of bizarre conclusions may follow. Perhaps the pagans might prefer to be allowed to drink the blood of sacrificial Virgins in the manner preordained over thousands of years albeit subject to the dead weight of politically correct laws framed by an irreligious elite. It is clear of course that we have flourishing religions in this country who might very well want to make use of such a precedent for establishing an alternative legal system . This is the problem with framing exceptions on a logic that draws its authority from “faith”. Such considerations have certainly been among the concerns of MP`s in areas of London where they might expect to encounter the results of ill considered laws.

If we were to start from the more mundane statement that a mother and father would be the best arrangement for a child we can proceed without resort to an authority not accepted by most participants in the adoption of the democracy we live in. Such a statement of opinion is , it would seem , illegal from someone who has authority in the domain of caring for children. We have an abysmal system where white parents are routinely denied adoption should the child be black and any would be adopter is regarded as a paedophile until it is proved otherwise over an 18month assault course .It is somewhat out of step not to “discriminate “ ie make a judgement , against a brace of gays given the overwhelming likelihood the child will have normal sexual inclinations. Additionally why would two men who happen to enjoy certain peculiar hobbies be allowed special privileges unavailable to two men who enjoy train spotting and making marmalade. Why then should any composite we can imagine not be given special protection against “discrimination”?. His Grace has previously noted the incursion of “anti discrimination “ of a most illiberal sort from which it is hard to see any good coming .
These privileges over and above those afforded others stem from the predominance of a gay Lobby in the media and poltitics. This over representation is , ironically enough , in my experience , a consequence of surplus funds , time and emotion which those of us supporting families do not have.

I have quite a few gay friends who I like and admire. I would be happy to make such points to them in the hope that it would be clear my views did not spring form hatred and fear. I would less comfortable to discuss their likely eternal torment….Such views are likely to be unhelpful politically in my humble opinion…and they will only giggle.

26 January 2007 at 23:25  
Anonymous Colin said...

"This over representation is, ironically enough, in my experience, a consequence of surplus funds, time and emotion which those of us supporting families do not have."

An interesting observation and probably the correct explanation for the phenomenon. I didn't think about that before. But you are right. Every success needs a strong commitment of one's emotional energy and time. Parents are emotionally commited to their family and children. As everybody knows, they cost a lot of energy, time, and money.

Hence, we would predict that singles or couples without children are more successful in their profession and in politics. And what do we find? Less children among successful people in the West.

The opposite is true in the Islamic culture because successful males have more women and hence more children. For example, Osama bin Laden is the seventh son of a wealthy business man with a family of 52 children.

27 January 2007 at 00:14  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Newmania, Bob is correct, no mention of liking

The Penny Catechism (Catholic)

339. Does Jesus Christ also command us to love one another?

Jesus Christ also commands us to love one another that is, all persons without exception - for his sake.

340. How are we to love one another?

We are to love one another by wishing well to one another, and praying for one another; and by never allowing ourselves any thought, word, or deed to the injury of anyone.

But to address your concerns, I hope this will help:

The meaning of love is not to be confused with some sentimental outpouring. Love is something much more than emotional bosh. Perhaps the Greek language can clear our confusion at this point. In the Greek New Testament are three words for love. The word eros is a sort of aesthetic or romantic love. In the Platonic dialogues eros is a yearning of the soul for the realm of the divine. The second word is philia, a reciprocal love and the intimate affection and friendship between friends. We love those whom we like, and we love because we are loved. The third word is agape, understanding and creative, redemptive goodwill for all men. An overflowing love which seeks nothing in return, agape is the love of God operating in the human heart. At this level, we love men not because we like them, nor because their ways appeal to us, nor even because they possess some type of divine spark; we love every man because God loves him. At this level, we love the person who does an evil deed, although we hate the deed that he does.

Now we can see what Jesus meant when he said, “Love your enemies.” We should be happy that he did not say, “Like your enemies.” It is almost impossible to like some people. “Like” is a sentimental and affectionate word. How can we be affectionate toward a person whose avowed aim is to crush our very being and place innumerable stumbling blocks in our path? How can we like a person who is threatening our children and bombing our homes? That is impossible. But Jesus recognized that love is greater than like. When Jesus bids us to love our enemies, he is speaking neither of eros nor philia; he is speaking of agape, understanding and creative, redemptive goodwill for all men. Only by following this way and responding with this type of love are we able to be children of our Father who is in heaven. (Martin Luther King, Jr. Strength to Love, Philadelphia: Fortress, 1981. p. 52.)

The word eros does not appear at all in the New Testament. Phileo is the word that is generally used to define human love. The noun agape is used some 87 times in the New Testament and always refers to God’s unique love. It must not be confused with the verb agapao (a deliberate action of the will), which is used some 129 times in the New Testament and can refer to man’s self-centered love

27 January 2007 at 00:22  
Anonymous newmania said...

Newmania, Bob is correct, no mention of liking
No doubt ..your comments are interesting but I had tried to take the word "Love" out of the romantic tradition that predominates.Different attachments to family , friends perhaps country or a set of beliefs are alltypes of love.To entirely remove "emotion" strikes me as a temptation to dishonesty about ones motives and an excuse for behaviour no real love would allow.If this intellectual suppsition is not felt by the giver or the reciever then I am hard pushed to see in what sense it has any real existence.
Loving the evil doer but not the deed sits on similiar stilts of air.There is no break between the action and the actor . They are a unity.On the contrary a deed may be good or bad depending on the context or the motive asnd we recognise this of course. The motive of the actor is where the judgement must lie and to claim to love an evil man is to love evil and to be evil.


I must admit though, I do find this "agape" idea strangely compelling I recognise it perhaps from transmission through English poetry.Platonic ideas of the soul calling to its "other half" at least , are common in metaphysical poetry and ...Donne springs to mind.It might be interesting to look at his sermons which I have never got round to.

27 January 2007 at 02:35  
Anonymous bob said...

Newmania,
In posting on a blog such as this I always feel constrained to at least try and limit myself as I find it tedious to wade through a needlessly large post. That's just me though, but it does mean that I may not always explain myself properly or to everyone else's satisfaction.

The essence of love, for me at least, is concern for another person. To be concerned for another or to show concern for another is not predicated on liking the person. I can show concern for a total stranger, for example. So I would imagine that would take this love out of the gulag. Love, as I see it, is an act of will and reason rather than solely an emotional act. However, this does not guarantee any great success on my part of being a loving person, but I try as best I can.

Also, much in the same way as it's not necessary to like the person in order to show love for them, so also it's not necessary to have their permission to do so.

I would suggest reading CS Lewis' "The Four Loves", but Colin will not doubt castigate me for not providing a link, but it is quite an excellent read on the subject, and doubtless explains it much more clearly than I could ever hope to.

To say that to love a person who has acted in an evil way is to therefore to love evil does not make sense to me at least. Does this mean, therefore, that every child of a dictator is guilty of loving evil because they had a parent who acted in an evil way?

You say to remove any mention of emotion from love would excuse for behaviour no real love would allow. I would contend that this actually happens if you remove reason and intellect from love. This is most obviously seen in the form of a stalker who feels so consumed by the emotion of love that reason and intellect are bypassed. This may be an over-simplification, but I feel it makes the point.

Love, for me then, is wishing no harm to another, and also wishing what is best for them, and doing what I can to bring that about. I often feel, however, that given my own limitations and weaknesses, the most loving then I can do is not inflict my company on those who do not wish to share it.

As, you can also see, it's possible to explain this view of love in non-religious terms.

27 January 2007 at 06:02  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin,
Every Church, Christian Grouping, world religion, etc, believes that it possesses the fullness of truth. The Catholic Church is no different. If it did not believe this about itself then it would have ceased to be long ago. The central point, however, is that it believes that it is not the sole provider of salvation - that salvation is an act of God's mercy and is not predicated on membership of the Church.

Also, Colin, I must admit to finding it a little hard to believe that you like me given that you've referred to me as discorteous, arrogant (on several occasions) and likened me to the Taliban. But as I've said before I don't care either way. I don't believe it's necessary or possible to like everyone in the world. Nor do I believe it's necessary to like everyone you agree with and dislike everyone you disagree with. I wish you no ill. I wish what is best for you. I feel it unnecessary to attach an emotion to either of those, however.

27 January 2007 at 06:20  
Blogger Cranmer said...

It seems that we have to beg His Grace to study the theology of the Catholic Church more carefully before lauching his attacks.

His Grace has studied this with more than you might credit him.

When one's theology transmogrifies chameleon-like, and represents different things to different people, it is difficult to know which teachings are God's truth, revealed to all mankind for all time, and which are amendable by the magesterium or the infallibility of the Papacy.

On salvation, His Grace prefers Scripture, specifically Acts 4:12. He has no intention at all of conveying any message to Muslims, Sikhs, Hindus or Buddhists that they are saved by their sincerity. It is not for man, any man, however infallible, to amend this verse; it is for the Church, the true Church, to preach the gospel of salvation to all mankind.

When the Roman Catholic Church says of the Church of England that it is 'not a church in the proper sense', that its orders are 'null and void', and has stated of itself that it is 'the sole organ on earth for the salvation of mankind', one may understand how subsequent declarations which appear to soften such assertions could be treated with a degree of suspicion.

27 January 2007 at 09:09  
Anonymous bob said...

The Catholic definition of a Church, according to Dominus Iesus, is one which has a valid episcopate and which have preserved the genuine and integral substance of the Eucharistic mystery. Anglicans are convinced that they fulfil these critera, Catholics are not.

I have tried to find the phrase you used, i.e., 'the sole organ on earth for the salvation of mankind.' It does not appear in any search I've conducted. I assume you're referring to the notion of no salvation outside the Church. The recent Compendium of the Catholic Church (for Colin's benefit available here ) deals with this in paragraphs 168 and 171.

As your tradition is Sola Scriptura, and ours is Scripture, Tradition and Magesterium then there will undoubtedly be differences in how we interpret the Christian faith.

When Catholic teaching has be misunderstood and misrepresented then it is easy to see where confusion can reign.

27 January 2007 at 10:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

can we seriously get a new article to read now. as interesting as this topic is, i think it's dragged on long enough.

27 January 2007 at 10:36  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boo the Catholics. Still a menace, it seems.

27 January 2007 at 10:56  
Anonymous The recusant said...

Your Grace,

As you are well versed in all things Catholic, I’m sure you will be aware of the chameleon-like qualities of Papal infallibility, you refer to, however just to jog your memory I have expanded on the subject below. As for it being difficult to know which teachings are God’s truths, that easy, we’ve got it, you can have it, it’s free.

In Roman Catholic theology, papal infallibility is the dogma that, by action of the Holy Spirit, the Pope is preserved from even the possibility of error when he solemnly promulgates, or declares, to the Church a dogmatic teaching on faith or morals as being contained in divine revelation, or at least being intimately connected to divine revelation. The Holy Spirit also works though the body of the Church to ensure that all infallible teachings will be received by all Catholics.

In reality, the pope seldom uses his power of infallibility. The last time an infallible doctrine was declared was in 1950 when Mary's assumption into heaven was proclaimed an article of faith. In other words, rather than being some mystical power of the pope, infallibility means the Church allows the office of the pope to be the ruling agent in deciding what will be accepted as formal beliefs in the Church.

Many non-Catholics, wrongly believe that the doctrine teaches that the Pope is infallible in everything he says. In fact, the use of papal infallibility is rare.

1. "Tome to Flavian", Pope Leo I, 449, on the two natures in Christ, received by the Council of Chalcedon;
2. Letter of Pope Agatho, 680, on the two wills of Christ, received by the Third Council of Constantinople;
3. Benedictus Deus, Pope Benedict XII, 1336, on the beatific vision of the just prior to final judgment;
4. Cum occasione, Pope Innocent X, 1653, condemning five propositions of Jansen as heretical;
5. Auctorem fidei, Pope Pius VI, 1794, condemning seven Jansenist propositions of the Synod of Pistoia as heretical;
6. Ineffabilis Deus, Pope Pius IX, 1854, defining the immaculate conception; and
7. Munificentissimus Deus, Pope Pius XII, 1950, defining the assumption of Mary.

So that’s it 7 times in 2000 years. According to the teaching of the First Vatican Council and Catholic tradition, the conditions required for ex cathedra teaching are as follows:

1. "The Roman Pontiff"
2. "speaks ex cathedra" ("that is, when in the discharge of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians, and by virtue of his supreme apostolic authority….")
3. "He defines"
4. "that a doctrine concerning faith or morals"
5. "Must be held by the whole Church" (Pastor Aeternus, chap. 4)

The Penny Catechism (Catholic) once again.
92. Is the Pope infallible?
The Pope is infallible.
93. What do you mean when you say that the Pope is infallible?
When I say that the Pope is infallible, I mean that the Pope cannot err when, as Shepherd and Teacher of all Christians, he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals, to be held by the whole Church.


This does not mean the Church will not make errors and that its members will not likewise err (Including the Pope). It does mean the Church believes Christ when he says "Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it;" and, "Go, therefore, teach all nations . . . .and lo! I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world." This is our belief.

27 January 2007 at 11:51  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Newmania,
Bob . If someone’s concern for a person, by your lights, included the removal , by force , of politically or theologically inconvenient ideas , this , theoretical love, would permit murder and torture. Here we have added the rational to love to great affect . Hence the Gulag torturer. The Counter reformation , for example, expressed its love on an industrial scale which required great ingenuity in an age before gas chambers.
I like CS Lewis and often read him, but he is a medievalist and Literary critic. The Discarded Image would be my recommendation and I would approach his metaphysical musings, fun , though they are, in a spirit of discussion.
The child ( of a dictator) is unaware of the evil acts and uncomprehending of them . I assumed both of these in the contemplation of the “evil act” obviously .Your views separate the murderer from the murder which is , in my view, an error that has lead to the virtual abandonment of justice in the penal and system and the courts. A stalker is good demonstration that love is not a good thing. It is of its nature partly against reason, like faith and loyalty. Both of these qualities can be dangerous and yet both are vital. Your attempt to rationalise and control is misguided . Blake held images of love revealing juxtaposition. A better approach.

Love seeketh not Itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care;
But for another gives its ease,
And builds a Heaven in Hells despair.

So sang a little Clod of Clay,
Trodden with the cattle's feet;
But a Pebble of the brook,
Warbled out these metres meet.

Love seeketh only Self to please,
To bind another to Its delight:
Joys in anothers loss of ease,
And builds a Hell in Heavens despite.

The Christian view of what love tends to ignore its true nature. I will resist further rambling Both the creaking architecture of systems of belief and the waffling of New mania , are unlikely to contain the reality.

27 January 2007 at 12:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i'm still waiting for that new article.............still waiting....zzzzzzzzzz

27 January 2007 at 12:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Colin is real and I am real ; we are separately real.

Is your duality separate in all respects - spatial and biological ?

27 January 2007 at 14:13  
Anonymous bob said...

Obviously Newmania we are going to have to live in disagreement because what you describe as Christian love is not what I believe nor what I try to live.

I'm afraid what Blake described in his thrid verse is what I would consider lust to be, not love - seeking only the pleasure of self with no regard for the other.

Thomas Aquinas defined love as "a binding force by which another is joined to me and cherished by myself" (Summa Theologica I, Q20, art 1). St Paul described love as patient, kind, unselfish, unconceited, humble. I fail to see how that can confine someone to a gulag, but we obviously see different thing here.

The maxim of love the sinner but hate the sin, to my mind, does not divorce the person from the act. The person has to accept the responsibility of what they have done and to be brought to justice, but it does not mean that they are less human, less worthy of love than any other person. Evil is the absence of good, and so no person is completely evil, and therefore capable of being loved.

27 January 2007 at 14:17  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Obviously, you are completely ignorant of the fast progress in the field of biology since the 3.4 billions base pairs of the Human Genome have been completely sequenced in 2003 for about 300 million dollars.

Colin, you have a habit of surging off at a tangent based upon a premise of your own making thus compounding your initial error. If you re-read the thread you will find that I stated Prior to Watson & Crick Biology was a matter of librarianship in cataloguing........you go on to discuss the extrapolations of the work of Watson & Crick.

You are obviously a subscriber to the Doctrines of Richard Dawkins. I am not.

Since to subscribe to his credo you must be a Believer I take it you are. There are some who feel the Rev Sung Myung Moon has the answer, others adhere to L. Ron Hubbard, and yet others feel David Koresh or Karl Marx to be the answer.

You may recite whatever arguments you wish but I have no interest in Richard Dawkins. I do not accept him as having any insight into any matters beyond the area of his PhD Thesis.

27 January 2007 at 14:23  
Anonymous Voyager said...

The maxim of love the sinner but hate the sin, to my mind, does not divorce the person from the act.

It is also incomplete. Since the notion of Sin is denied by some individuals there is no basis upon which they can be accepted by Christianity. The acknowledgement of Sin and the commitment to Sin no more are pre-requisites for Grace.

The fact that English is a language with marked deficiencies in its modern expression of Charity it has substituted the word Love which has various forms in Latin whose subtleties are lost in translation.

The more one reflects that both Jesus Christ and Saul of Tarsus were Torah-observant Jews the more the issue needs to be sen in Judaism where the notion of Sin and Repentance are derived. There is no way it can be understood in terms of 20th Century English which is used with remarkable imprecision

27 January 2007 at 14:31  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Is that consistent with the Christian faith to love your neighbour as yourself?

I think this is again a failure of education in Western Society. The phrase as used did not refer to the world in general - the translation of "neighbour" is not the same as in English today.

"The first is, 'Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.'

The second is this, 'You shall love your neighbour as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these."


The First is too often forgotten. It means your neighbour is God-fearing and a Believer.

I believe the phrase originates in Leviticus 19

27 January 2007 at 14:41  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

"Also, Colin, I must admit to finding it a little hard to believe that you like me given that you've referred to me as discorteous, arrogant (on several occasions) and likened me to the Taliban."

You might find it hard to believe but in fact it is true. I only detest people who cheat and plunder other humans. And in my view, you are an honest man, sometimes a little bit stubborn (e.g. in regard to provide the evidence for your claims), maybe sometimes a bit arrogant like most people who believe they are in possession of eternal truths (i.e. religion), obviously sensitive and therefore somewhat resentful. So what? Obviously, you are human as we all are.

I like honest people, individuals who defend what they believe in. I respect such people and I do not bear any grudge being verbally or intellectually attacked. I am sorry but I have always been this way, already in primary school. I am often surprised that people hate each other. My weak spot is that I seem to be nearly unable to hate, even if I am attacked, maybe because I am always trying to understand the other person. In school, I liked to play a game with my teachers and pupils, I first defended one view and then the opposite view. It always found that it was a lot of fun. When I had heard enough facts from both sides, I could make up my mind what was true: thesis + antithesis = synthesis.

Anyway, to make a long story short: I like you and I also like Voyager who is often busy attacking me. The debates with him and many others provide a lot of fun for me. He is an intelligent chap. It wouldn't be fun to debate a mentally handicapped. For me, debates are like a game, an intellectual game to see who has the better arguments. And along the way I learn quite a lot, from my opponents and from the necessity to more carefully think about my own view. After all, I might be wrong. The debate is an intellectual stimulus, e.g. like a game of chess.

"likened me to the Taliban" No, I said something like: I guess there is a little Taliban in all of us. And I in my mind I was thinking more about myself than about you. Because I felt that I started to become too intolerant in regard to your refusal to provide the evidence. It's like a soccer game. The players don't hate each other. If a player of the opposing team is very good, they respect and sometimes like each other, at least I hope so.

Anyhow, you have won your argument with Cranmer. Congratulations! Where is the bottle champagne?

His Grace,

Should we attempt to reach 200 comments?

27 January 2007 at 15:29  
Anonymous Colin said...

His Grace,

Bob has provided the evidence that the Catholic Church considers the adoption of children by homosexuals as gravely immoral.

Where is the evidence for His Grace's claim that "the Catholic Adoption Agency admits that it already places children with single homosexuals"?

Because that would mean that the British Catholic Adoption Agency acts gravely immoral, wouldn't it.

27 January 2007 at 15:38  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Where is the evidence for His Grace's claim that "the Catholic Adoption Agency admits that it already places children with single homosexuals"?

Mr Colin,

His Grace is happy to oblige:

'They have been willing to place children with single gay parents, but not couples.'

http://society.guardian.co.uk/children/story/0,,1995926,00.html

'Catholic adoption agencies are already placing children with “a single adoptive parent”, and that they “welcome adoptive applicants from any or no religious background”.
Mr Kirker comments: “In practice, to our knowledge this includes single homosexual adopters..'

http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/content/news_syndication/article_070125lgcm.shtml

And perhaps most persuasively, from an MP:

'The admission on Newsnight by the Roman Catholic Bishop of Birmingham, the Most Rev Vincent Nichols, that Catholic adoption agencies happily place children with single gay or lesbian people...'

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,59-2564156,00.html

27 January 2007 at 16:12  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

"I stated Prior to Watson & Crick Biology was a matter of librarianship in cataloguing........"

We are already far, far beyond Watson & Crick as I was able to prove with sufficient evidence. And all the discoveries of genomic science have confirmed Darwin and the evolutionary theory. The evolutionary theory is so much better supported by evidence that the creational hypotheses of ancient civilizations is obviously incorrect.

"You are obviously a subscriber to the Doctrines of Richard Dawkins. I am not."

I don't subscribe to Doctrines and don't believe anything (at least I hope so) without supporting evidence. What Dawkins describes in his bestseller "The Selfish Gene" is nothing but a popularized version of scientific findings.

It is easy to see for everyone, even without a scientific education, that he is right. People die but their genes survive in their children. That's all what he said and it can't hardly be denied by anyone.

The conclusion from this simple fact is that the human body, mind and sex is the genes' method to survive. Richard Dawkins did not invent that. Every geneticist knows these facts.

"Since to subscribe to his credo you must be a Believer I take it you are. There are some who feel the Rev Sung Myung Moon has the answer, others adhere to L. Ron Hubbard, and yet others feel David Koresh or Karl Marx to be the answer."

The difference is that they don't have sufficient evidence to prove their hypotheses. There is a fundamental difference between beliefs and scientific facts. The latter have survived a large number of tests and are therefore highly probable (but never with absolute certitude) correct, whereas the former are highly improbable because unsupported by or in contradiction with facts. Or as Bertrand Russels said, "Science is what you know, philosophy is what you don't know."

"You may recite whatever arguments you wish but I have no interest in Richard Dawkins. I do not accept him as having any insight into any matters beyond the area of his PhD Thesis."

The thought that I might be able to change your mind, never occured to me. I am simply having fun discussing the matter with you.

Your argument is similar to that of left, i.e. there is not truth, everything is relative, one may adopt one view or another: Ron Hubbard, Karl Marx, Richard Dawkins or Christ. It's all just about believing. And since you believe in the Doctrines of the Church, you refuse to accept anything contradictory to these Doctrines. That's fine, if it make you feel good. Somebody wrote on the internet "Religion is Santa Claus for adults" [His Grace, I hope you might be able forgive me for this quote but we want to pass the mark of 200 comments, don't we.]

Voyager, believing and knowing something is not the same. If you have a serious illness, you first go to the doctor because he/she very likely knows the cause and a cure (found by the scientific method). You do not really believe that God is almighty and will save your life as well as science does or do you?

27 January 2007 at 16:38  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Your argument is similar to that of left, i.e. there is not truth, everything is relative, one may adopt one view or another: Ron Hubbard, Karl Marx, Richard Dawkins or Christ. It's all just about believing.

Actually just the opposite.

Medicine does not work by scientific method it works by heuristic method backed up by pharmaceuticals which I find irritating at £6.65 for each experiment and have to guide my physician to keep my costs in check.

You again persist in not comprehending. Biology can be divided into Pre-Watson & Crick and Post-Watson & Crick. Physics is way beyond Einstein's seminal works but we speak of Post-Einsteinian Physics.

You have a difficulty Colin in that you skim the surface of an issue without really having traction, hence you slide in a rater literary mode which is probably your academic background. The surprising thing is that Oxford University has a Professor of Historical Theology who is actually a Biochemist with a D.Phil in Molecular Biophysics.

It would seem he might have much to debate with Richard Dawkins but offers to debate are refused. Thus this Oxford Professor has been forced to publish his propositions in a book SPCK will publish in February 2007 entitled The Dawkins Delusion

DElusion

Perhaps when you have read it Colin you might share your insights ?

27 January 2007 at 16:56  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob and Recusant,

What now? His Grace provided the evidence for his claim that the Catholic Adoption Agency places children with homosexuals. I checked the links and found that he is seems to be right.

Would you like to comment on the gravely immoral (in their own words) behavior of the Catholic Church?

Are they trying to deceive their believers or is there any other explanation for these apparent contradictions?

What about Tejus' interpretation that "as a result of its own policy [celibacy] the Church ended up doing something it had no intention of doing. This has resulted in homosexuality and paedophilia"?

I don't know what to think and need some guidance from knowledgeable Catholics.

27 January 2007 at 17:01  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

"Oxford University has a Professor of Historical Theology who is actually a Biochemist with a D.Phil in Molecular Biophysics."

What does this tell us? That he couldn't get a professorship in the Department of Biochemistry because of lack of important scientific research? Many Greens studied biology and are now sitting in the German parliament. To study a certain field and to write a Ph.D. thesis doesn't guarantee that he understands the heuristic principles of science.

Thanks for the link to his book at Amazon, "The Dawkins Delusion". To get it would take at least a week and to read it a few more days. Since you already read the book, could you please provide me with answers two questions so that I am able to see whether the book is worth spending the money.

(1) Does he prove the existence of God?
(2) Does he disprove the existence of mutations in genes and their transmission from parents to children?

Because this is what Richard Dawkins is all about.

27 January 2007 at 17:23  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Since you already read the book

Colin....the words used were SPCK will publish in February 2007

Now with your ability to tell the time if I were already in February 2007 how is it you are able to read my postings as if they are in January 2007 ?

27 January 2007 at 17:57  
Anonymous Voyager said...

What about interpretation that "as a result of its own policy [celibacy] the Church ended up doing something it had no intention of doing. This has resulted in homosexuality and paedophilia"?

I question the inteligence of anyone who wrote such a banal statement. It suggests a second-rate intellect purely by looking at the supposed causality and universality implied.

It is a sad statement which has so many philosophical flaws it makes the author appear to be floundering

27 January 2007 at 18:00  
Anonymous Wisdom said...

"likened me to the Taliban" No, I said something like: I guess there is a little Taliban in all of us

The word Taliban is the Pashto plural form of the Arabic طالب Tālib, "student". The term "Taliban" is often incorrectly used in English as a singular noun.

27 January 2007 at 18:44  
Anonymous The recusant said...

Colin,

Where to start? The source of this is a letter from The Rev. Richard Kirker, a founder member and first General Secretary of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement. Need I go on? OK.

The letter was sent to the government in opposition and after the letter from Cardinal Cormac Murphy O’Conner. Published on the Ekklesia web site and picked up by the media, and oh boy didn’t the Guardian snap it up, just like the BBC. Ekklesia is an organisation that promotes progressive theological ideas in public life; that’s what they say about themselves, its stated position is in total opposition to the RCC on traditional Christian orthodoxy. So here is the source of your confusion

Paraphrasing of the Cardinals letter (Can’t you just see them doing the quotes thing (which were not in the original letter) with their fingers)
Second, we note from the Cardinal’s letter that the Catholic adoption agencies are already placing children with “a single adoptive parent”, and that they “welcome adoptive applicants from any or no religious background”.

But then they add this, their own bit, I think they are being deceitful and dishonest, Oh and Hitler was baptised Catholic, he didn’t practice his faith but then if the mud fits, sling it.
“In practice, to our knowledge this includes single homosexual adopters, and even those who, while legally single, are living within a same-sex partnership. In addition, some of those individuals are Catholics.

Why do you think they included this next sentence? News flash the RCC does not accept the notion of civil partnerships, is there anyone in the UK that didn’t know this, is anyone surprised by this revelation?
What it appears that the Catholic Church cannot accept is the recent legalisation of civil partnership - a measure widely welcomed by all political leaders and a large majority of, for instance, those Anglican Bishops who voted for the Act.

And then they (make it up as they go along) throw this in for good measure. , ‘might be seen’, ‘some believers’,’ be more dangerous’ A speculative preposition on a non quantifiable subject followed by a unfounded slanderous conclusion or to put it in the phraseology of my old Latin master ‘Non Gradus Anus Rodentum!’ (Not Worth A Rats Ass!)
But they are ready to favour individuals whose own beliefs, or lack of them, and whose single status, might be seen by some believers to be more dangerous to the welfare of the child placed.


Not to be out done the Guardian interviewed their chosen ministerial mouthpiece who proceeded to repeated the claim

The environment minister, Ben Bradshaw, who is gay, says “They have been willing to place children with single gay parents, but not couples”.

So pretty much the party line there from a labour politician and they never tell lies do they?

Colin believe it if you will, I cannot speak for the alleged comments of Bishop Nichols, his quote is from someone writing a letter to the times about a BBC program. However I would bet my last button that the CAA will not knowingly place a child with a single, active homosexual.

If a Catholic man or woman indicated that they had homosexual inclinations, but believed sex outside marriage (what a quaint old fashioned idea) was wrong and that they were celibate and intended to stay that way, then I should think they might be considered, but don’t know.

I don’t think His Grace is being disingenuous, perhaps just a little mischievous by his links, but what his Grace has not provided is prima-facie evidence that, and this is the crux of the matter, the CAA has knowingly placed any child with a single, active homosexual, or a cohabiting pair of homosexuals.

27 January 2007 at 21:13  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

"Colin....the words used were SPCK will publish in February 2007

Now with your ability to tell the time if I were already in February 2007 how is it you are able to read my postings as if they are in January 2007 ? "


Smart reply, indeed!

27 January 2007 at 21:15  
Anonymous Colin said...

Dear Recusant,

Thanks a lot for taking the trouble to explain in detail that the evidence is rather flimsy in regard to the adoption of children by homosexuals via the Catholic Adoption Agencies.

I believe that your interpretation is probably correct because I am observing quite frequently that the leftist media are trying to give the false impression that their opposition is already split and that the remaining opponents must somehow be weird. It's their habitual strategy.

Naturally, I don't know His Grace's view in the matter. But I think that the Catholic Church deserves as much as anybody else the benefit of the doubt, especially since we all know the tricks of the Guardian et al., After all, not everything the Guardian, BBC and other lefist media is publishing about conservatives is without distortion of the truth.

And thanks again, Recusant, for your helpful explanations.

27 January 2007 at 21:37  
Anonymous Colin said...

Wisdom,

Your correction is much appreciated. Hence, I should have said: There is a little طالب Tālib, "student", in all of us. Correct?

Bob,

Are you holding an eternal grudge against me because I said that there is a little student in all of us? That's rather a compliment, isn't it.

And are you drinking the bottle of champagne gained by your victory all by yourself? I think you should at least invite the Recusant and His Grace to share a glass or two. Although, if I remember correctly, His Grace prefers red wine.

27 January 2007 at 21:46  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

In your view, "Medicine does not work by scientific method"

That's really a surprising statement. Is it possible that you have an entirely different view about the scientific method, i.e. the method employed by natural sciences, than natural scientists and the philosophers of science?

The leading and most widely accepted analysis of the scientific method is Conjectures and Refutations by Sir Karl Raimund Popper who taught at the London School of Economics.

In brief, we humans make up a story (i.e. a hypothesis or conjecture) that explains the phenomena we observe. For some people that's already the end of it. They are happy with the fact that they have an explanation (e.g. an invisible ghost or a supernatural being might be the cause of the observed phenomena).

However, scientists don't accept such a tentative explanation which might be wrong. They perform a multitude of tests by deriving predictions from the conjecture and by checking if the predicted phenomena can actually be observed. If a disagreement between predictions and observations is obtained, the conjecture is refuted. And the search for the correct explanation goes on.

In medicine, the conjecture or hypothesis to be tested consists of the so-called null-hypothesis for treatments, which predicts that treatment X, Y or Z has the same effect as no treatment at all (i.e. placebo, e.g. sugar pills). These predictions are tested in so-called double-blind (i.e. patient and doctors don't know which is the placebo) studies. If a statistically significant difference (i.e. a difference unlikely to be the result of chance) between the placebo and verum group is found, the null-hypothesis is refuted and the alternative hypothesis (i.e. treatment has an effect) is accepted. Many such tests in phase I, II and III (animals, volunteers and patients) have to be performed before any new treatment is authorised as medical treatment. Because of this stringent testing, the development of a new treatment costs the pharmaceutical industry 150-200 million Euros. A pharmaceutical company with two failures(i.e. approx. 1 billion dollars) will likely have to declare insolvency.

If everything would be tested as thouroughly by scientific methods as in medicine before implemented, we wouldn't constantly have to suffer from the failures of social policies.

27 January 2007 at 22:38  
Blogger Cranmer said...

But once Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Birmingham, admitted on Tuesday’s Newsnight that his agencies were happy to place children with single gay people, but not couples, his argument fell apart.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,6-2566484,00.html

And from a Roman Catholic witness:

(He) has just admitted on BBC that Catholic adoption agencies let single homosexuals adopt but he is opposing adoption by homosexual couples

http://cathcon.blogspot.com/2007/01/archbishop-of-birmingham-uk.html

His Grace is sourcing the Newsnight transcript, but it appears that the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Birmingham did indeed state this. If he did not, he certainly said something so very similar that very many mistook his meaning, and, in the present climate, that doesn't sound so very clever.

27 January 2007 at 23:43  
Anonymous Voyager said...

n your view, "Medicine does not work by scientific method"

That's really a surprising statement.


Colin stop relying on books you have read - we all know Popper and he is fun to read. Just as Adam Smith syntheisised the operations of a pin-factory for the edification of armchair entrepreneurs, the son of a Kircaldy Customs Officer never made a pin in his life.

With enough doctors in my family to make conversation stultifying I can assure you that they have not read Popper and do not care what Popper has to say. They make a diagnosis based upon what experience they have and how good the patient is at explaining his predicament. I doubt many electrons had deep conversations with Rutherford or Fermi, or whether Faraday asked electrons if they preferred copper to gold for their transports of delight.

Medics use drugs to treat what they think is the problem - the method is heuristic just like a car mechanic. Time is costly and no doctor has time to pursue Popper's route to medical bankruptcy,

It is you Colin who are so obsessionally theoretical that you must be a teacher

28 January 2007 at 07:02  
Anonymous bob said...

Colin, I have a life outside of the confines of this blog, and spent most o the past 24 hours either asleep, or trying to get rid of a cold, or watching rugby.

I wasn't drinking champagne as I don't drink alcohol. Even if I did I would feel no need to celebrate as in a discussion there are no winners or losers only a search for the truth. In that Cranmer and I are never more than equals - no winners, no losers, only those seeking the truth - although we may disagree as to what that truth may be.

I don't bear grudges if I can help it. Taliban's etymology may come for student, but I fear it may have adopted a more sinister meaning since 2001.

28 January 2007 at 10:04  
Anonymous Colin said...

His Grace,

Thank you for the additional links. I just read your link for The Times article and I have to confess that I am dumbstruck by the low intellectual level displayed by some politicians. Some quotes will prove the point:

(1) "The last time the State allowed itself to be overruled by the Church, over the percentage of non-believers allowed into faith schools, there was deep resentment among Labour MPs."

Labour MPs obviously think the government has the right to interfer in everybody's life. That's quite the opposite than the democracy and traditional freedoms Englishmen enjoyed and halfway towards totalitarism.

(2) "I’m not going to have some bloody reactionary German Pope dictate the law of our land,” said one minister."

They appear to prefer that reactionary Imams dictate the law of the land.

(3) "Another admitted, only half-jokingly, that his mother had always told him: “Never trust a Catholic."

A centuries-old prejudice which is not dissimilar to the well-known antisemitic prejudices.

(4) "And a third asked: “Where’s all the child abuse and paedophilia? In the Catholic Church. They should get their own bloody house in order and sort out the way paedophilia lies hidden."

This has absolutely nothing to do with the question if adopted children have the right to live in a normal family instead of an artificial situation. Cases of child abuse by some people in the Catholic Church is no reason for making the abuse of children's rights mandatory by law.

Where is this all going to end, if no opposition emerges? As little black Sambo said, now the children are already property of the state. That's the reintroduction of slavery under the guise of antidiscrimination. The churches have enough followers to bring pressure on the state. Although the politicians are always talking about democracy, they didn't care what the majority was thinking about adoptions by homosexuals. They know very well that the majority would vote against it.

More and more liberties are taken away from the people and transfered to the state bureaucracy. What will be next? If adoptions are arranged by the state's bureaucracy against the will of the individual (i.e. the children), the next logical step will be to arrange marriages by the state. After all, it is discriminatory that beautiful women get all the rich men. This discrimination of the ugly is an inacceptable violation of the fundamental human right of equal opportunities. In addition, there is discrimination against the elder. Teenagers refuse to marry old people. Such discriminatory marriage practices are unacceptable. Hence, the state has to arrange everybody's marriages.

Once, it was a centuries-old tradition of the churches to protect the little man against the abuses of state power. To take up again this tradition would tremendeously increase the credibility of the churches which has severely been harmed by its alliance with the state.

When does the Catholic Church and the Church of England stand up again against the follies of the state?

28 January 2007 at 15:59  
Anonymous Colin said...

Bob,

"spent most o the past 24 hours either asleep, or trying to get rid of a cold"

My best wishes for getting well soon!

28 January 2007 at 16:02  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Colin,

His link to The Times article was not to lend credence to the histrionics or ignorance of various government ministers, but to source the assertions of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Birmingham and in particular his statement that Catholic adoption agencies are prepared to place children with single homosexuals.

Unless the church has some effective monitoring system which ensures the maintenance of celibacy of such adopters, which would indeed resolve the questions of morality, His Grace remains puzzled by the inconsistency. Since the Archbishop's comments were not only picked up by the wider media, but were heard by Roman Catholic witnesses to which His Grace has already referred, their policy displays a certain incoherence.

28 January 2007 at 16:13  
Anonymous Colin said...

His Grace,

"their policy displays a certain incoherence"

No doubt about that. I was carried away when I read the statements of government ministers because I always had the impression that English politicians are brighter than their colleagues in Germany. The realization that I was wrong struck me with painful vehemence. There doesn't seem to be much difference between the intellectual level of the Greens in Germany and Labour in Great Britain. I beg your pardon for having side-tracked the discussion somewhat by focusing on the politicians.

Congratulations, His Grace's posting produced 150 comments, a record.

28 January 2007 at 16:40  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager,

Indeed, you are even more entertaining than I previously thought, just the right man to carry coal to Newcastle.

"Colin stop relying on books you have read"

How do you know that I am only relying on books?

"With enough doctors in my family to make conversation stultifying I can assure you that they have not read Popper and do not care what Popper has to say."

First, there are more doctors in the world than only those in your family. Thus, your point doesn't prove anything. Second, the normal medical doctor is only applying the knowledge he has learned at the university. He doesn't produce that knowledge. The production of the knowledge used in medicine is done by the scientific method.

"They make a diagnosis based upon what experience they have and how good the patient is at explaining his predicament."

More or less correct. It's a process of matching signs and symptoms with diagnostic criteria leading to a diagnostic hypothesis. Then, they test their hypothesis by applying additional tests such as lab tests, X-ray etc. or treatments. If the diagnostic hypothesis is not confirmed by the tests or if the patient doesn't get better as expected by the treatment, the first diagnosis is refuted and they start again again to search for the course of the disease.

"I doubt many electrons had deep conversations with Rutherford or Fermi, or whether Faraday asked electrons if they preferred copper to gold for their transports of delight."

There is not need to disprove a ridicilous statement.

"Medics use drugs to treat what they think is the problem - the method is heuristic just like a car mechanic."

Thanks for this excellent analogy! The car mechanic (as the practicing doctor) didn't produce the knowledge needed for building the car. He is not a scientist. Is there any doubt that the car is build according to the laws of mechanics discovered by physicists and the tests carried out by engineers? The same is true for the relationship between medical research and medical doctors. Or do you believe that the car and medical drugs have fallen from heaven?

"It is you Colin who are so obsessionally theoretical that you must be a teacher."

Your "superior" knowledge obviously makes you think that you ought to teach a medical scientist about medicine and science. Very amusing, indeed. Next, you are probably teaching the scientific heirs of Rutherford, Fermi, and Faraday how to discover the laws of the universe by applying Voyager's methods of science.

Socrates said, "I am better off than he is - for he knows nothing, and thinks that he knows. I neither know nor think that I know." This tells us that self-deceptive ignorance is nothing new in the history of mankind.

28 January 2007 at 16:57  
Anonymous glyn said...

Your Grace,

With regard to the issue regarding single homosexual adopters, you do make a valid point. However, there are lots of things that adoption agencies cannot check about adopters and nor can they predict what those individuals will do in the future. An adoption agency can only make decisions on the basis of the information available to it at the time.

It seems to me that it is difficult for an adoption agency to ascertain what relationships a single person has. As Your Grace alludes to, there is a risk that any of these people may now or at some point in the future enter a homosexual relationship. (Likewise, they may commit murder.) The only way to remove such a risk would be bar all single people from adopting, which would be undesirable and unnecessary as the Church is perfectly happy to allow celibate homosexuals to adopt. (Though, to the extent that the Catholic Adoption Agency knows that a certain individual is in a homosexual relationship, I am sure that it advises that person to look elsewhere.)

However, the case of a homosexual couple is one where the agency can see very clearly the relationship between the individuals. And therefore, it can be correspondingly clearer in its policy.

28 January 2007 at 17:18  
Anonymous old red soks said... said...

I notice that Cranmer opines on ConservativeHome:

"..The Catholic Church has been appallingly misrepresented in the media, and the aggression of the 'gay lobby' consequently perceived to be the epitome of enlightenment values."

Whereas in his own realm the 'line' is "Catholic Church Blackmails Government".

Cranmer has one bemused and seriously unimpressed communicant.

28 January 2007 at 17:36  
Anonymous dexey said...

'old red soks said...
I notice that Cranmer opines on ConservativeHome:
"..The Catholic Church has been appallingly misrepresented in the media, and the aggression of the 'gay lobby' consequently perceived to be the epitome of enlightenment values."
Whereas in his own realm the 'line' is "Catholic Church Blackmails Government".
Cranmer has one bemused and seriously unimpressed communicant.
4:15 PM'

I expect that His Grace has a good explanation for this but controversy is always more interesting than consistency.

28 January 2007 at 17:39  
Anonymous old red socks said...

Mr. Dexey,

I see: Cranmer's martyrdom was just his way of being controversial. Takes all sorts I guess.

28 January 2007 at 17:41  
Anonymous Tejus Ramakrishnan said...

old red socks..
perhaps the one flaw most people poesses is the inability to accept a person who is able to see clearly both sides of an argument.. hence in my opinion it is perfectly acceptable to both defend and attack a organisation at the same time.. one can only understand a situation better when the person is willing to see both sides & more.. (after all aristotle did once comment that it is the mark of an educated mind to entertain a though without accepting)

28 January 2007 at 17:42  
Anonymous glyn said...

Mr Old Red Socks,

I had supposed that His Grace's comments on the issue of Catholic Church Blackmails Government were out of character.

I would welcome news of His Grace's conversion on the issue and I would say that his communicants would esteem him all the more for it should it be the case.

28 January 2007 at 17:42  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Cranmer has one bemused and seriously unimpressed communicant

His Grace is not remotely inconsistent in these assertions, and he is not so intellectually-challenged as to believe that his communicants do not read his second-highest referer.

He stands by his claim that the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster is blackmailing the Government in its insistence that it will close down its adoption agencies unless the Government grants in an opt-out.; he refutes, however, the grotesque caricatures of the gay-friendly media that the church's stance amounts to 'bigotry', or that the church is a den of vice and corruption.

The church may be both right and wrong, and if you read the threads you will discover His Grace's assertions of both. Controversy for its own sake is egotistical self-indulgence; controversy in the pusuit of justice and truth is wholly unintentional yet pefectly desirable.

28 January 2007 at 17:43  
Anonymous Voyager said...

the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster is blackmailing the Government

I suspect blackballing might be a more appropriate verb.

As for the article by La Sieghart in Tabloid Times it is worth contrasting her own highly liberal approaches to homosexual rights and Class-A substances with the background of her father Paul Sieghart QC (1927-88) as a refugee from Germany and a highly-respected Catholic....as a Human Rights lawyer he left his papers to ARchive

and in Box 28 - Section J - Human Rights & Christianity - his daughter could read
i) Theological Foundations of Human Rights
ii) Human Rights and the Dignity of Man


It is therefore interesting to see just how far these zealots wish to go in gagging the religious and subverting their liberties. This is not a matter of Adoption but of Education and the determination of the Left to use the Brown era to eradicate religion in State Schools

28 January 2007 at 18:09  
Anonymous dexey said...

"Controversy for its own sake is egotistical self-indulgence"

Heaven forbid that I meant this, Your Grace

28 January 2007 at 18:09  
Anonymous Colin said...

Voyager's

hypothesis that "This is not a matter of Adoption but of Education and the determination of the Left to use the Brown era to eradicate religion in State Schools" is probably correct.

Indeed, it looks like a war of the fundamentalists of secular religions against Christian religions. Full of hatred against traditional religions, these fanatics are willing to win their war at all costs. One way is to get their ideas in the heads of kids at school. Another way is to use other religions such as Islam as allies against the traditional Christian culture which they detest. And which Christian faith do they detest most? Yes, catholicism.

His Grace, seems to be eager to destroy the influence of the Catholic Church in Great Britain because of centuries-old quarrels. However, if he succeeds, the CoE will be destroyed next. Together, the Churches can be strong, divided they are weak and will easily become prey of "progressive" forces.

28 January 2007 at 20:11  
Blogger Cranmer said...

His Grace, seems to be eager to destroy the influence of the Catholic Church in Great Britain because of centuries-old quarrels. However, if he succeeds, the CoE will be destroyed next.

A most bizarre assertion with a even more bizarre conclusion. It is far more likely the other way around: the erosion of the Protestant Settlement and the disestablishment of the Church of England will lead to the eradication of the Christian faith at any level of government. The Church of England neither depends upon the Roman Catholic Church for its political status nor its spiritual well-being.

And as for 'working together', His Grace would be far more inclined to this ecumenism if Rome did not insist at every turn that the Church of England is just plain wrong. Every declaration of ARCIC has been Rome-ward - Papal supremacy, salvation, Mary - and one is left to wonder what the Reformation achieved. And these are not centuries-old battles; they remain vibrant and contemporary matters of theology.

28 January 2007 at 20:33  
Anonymous glyn said...

Mr Colin,

You have described the 'big picture' with respect to this issue superbly. There is indeed a sense in which all of these matters are linked.

A left/liberal inspired cultural revolution has occurred in Britain over the last 50 years. It was slow and didn't seem like a revolution because it took time for the 'Beatles generation' to march through the institutions of the country. Those who oppose it now comprise a small minority of the population. However, as it has so patently failed to bring the utopia that its adherents sought, they know that there is a chance (albeit small) that it could yet be overturned even at this late stage and the generally much more civilised and superior pre-1960s society could return.

This increasing risk is due to the fact that the odious elements of their foolish revolution become more apparent day by day as does the fact that they are the true establishment in Britain (and not some old-fashioned conservative elite that they pretended still existed for so long). These realisations mean that there is only one way for them to hold down the revolution - to make counter-revolutionary thoughts unthinkable, or at least unsayable.

This is where we are now.

Incidentally, I prefer to think of the cultural revolutionaries as "ultra-reactionaries" rather than "progressives", as they wish to return to the crudity and brutality of pagan antiquity.

28 January 2007 at 21:08  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Those who oppose it now comprise a small minority of the population.

That, I dispute.

28 January 2007 at 21:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace,

Amen to all of that. Though I agree with our Roman Catholic brethern on this issue, I concur with Your Grace's views of the Protestant settlement and 'working together'.

I think, however, that it is important to view this issue distinctively from those (albeit infinitely more weighty) affairs.

28 January 2007 at 21:27  
Anonymous glyn said...

Mr Voyager,

That, I dispute.

It would be most welcome to hear of news of an increase in the numbers of people holding this view or that the numbers are higher than I described. I merely estimated it from my personal experiences.

Incidentally, the post at 9.27pm was mine - I do not know why it appeared as 'anonymous'!

28 January 2007 at 21:33  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Your Grace,

If we are to be honest the ARCIC is dead, it is just going through the motions and although the current thought is to progress to ARCIC 3 it is just a toothless show of unity rather than a serious attempt to find unity in doctrine and the social aspect of latitudinarian albeit inclusive of a common ecclesiastical organization.

In reality from Rome’s perspective the possibility of rapprochement collapsed when the synod chose to ordain women in 1992, I make no comment on Canterbury’s choice, I think the repercussion of that are still to be felt and will continue to be so for a few more years by the Anglican Communion, but there it is. Women in the episcopate and the Gay Bishop Gene Robinson affair put the lid on it.

As for Lambeth needing Rome, you’re right it doesn’t, personally I find more to be depressed in that, than to cheer. If in my life time I could have seen my Monarchs religion reunited to Rome I would have danced the length and breadth of Britain. I am an old Papist and a monarchist and live by (to paraphrase Thomas Mores maxim) “I am Her Majesty's good servant, but God's first.”

28 January 2007 at 22:20  
Anonymous Colin said...

Mr. Glyn,

Thank you for your kind comment. I fully agree with your view and interpretation and would like to add some of ideas which crossed my mind while reading your superb analysis.

"it took time for the 'Beatles generation' to march through the institutions of the country."

Indeed, they now have the power over the entire population and not only in the UK but in the entire Western world. How is that possible? From the dawn of civilization about ten thousand years ago until a few hundred years ago, predatory tribes or cliques had to use arms and wars for conquering and exploiting territories and their inhabitants. That strategy is nearly impossible now because of the development of powerful arms. Now, the best strategy for predators is to come from within, i.e. a clique's march through the institutions of the state. The state has an established system and the required arms for robbing the population by taxation and regulation. In other words, only stupid robbers use arms nowadays, more intelligent people march invisibly through the institutions. We can't see them coming until they have reached their goal. How do we know who they are? Probably, the only method is to look carefully which groups obtain privileges.

Mr. Newmania reported a most interesting and often overlooked fact, i.e. parents and families don't have as much time and resources as homosexuals. Generalizing his valuable observation, we come to the conclusion that individuals disinterested in or unable to have children are travelling on the fast lane on the march through the institutions. As a result, we, the normal family-oriented people, are ruled by people with abnormal lifestyles and views.

This begs the question, why was it different in the pre-1960s society? It seems to me that the churches were much more powerful at that time. And the churches were strongly in favor of children because their leaders knew very well that the survival of the church depends on successive generations.

"the odious elements of their foolish revolution become more apparent day by day as does the fact that they are the true establishment in Britain ... These realisations mean that there is only one way for them to hold down the revolution - to make counter-revolutionary thoughts unthinkable, or at least unsayable."

Yes, this explains all the propaganda, political correctness and the disempowerment of the parliament and of entire nations by the transmission of power to the unelected EU which the political class is still able to influence. The EU is a method to protect the power of the rulers from the people.

"there is a chance (albeit small) that it could yet be overturned"

It will be overturned. Take a look at this interesting graph. It shows the ongoing trend since 1981 of the French people voting against their political class. The French people are so fed up with their political class that the majority (54.6%) is now voting against them. The same trend is visible in other countries.

In addition, the younger generation rarely adopts the views of the older generation. Therefore, I am fairly sure that it will be overturned by the next generation. However, the "Beatles generation" as you call them (I personally prefer the term '68 or hippie generation) will probably leave an incredible mess behind consisting of the destruction of economies, family values, pensions, European demography and culture. But so did the previous generations (see WW-I & WW-II). The hope is on the next generation. And as far as I can see, they seem to be much more realistic and free of ideology. I believe that they will do a better job than the spoiled '68.

28 January 2007 at 23:21  
Anonymous Colin said...

Dear Recusant,

"I am an old Papist and a monarchist and live by (to paraphrase Thomas Mores maxim) “I am Her Majesty's good servant, but God's first.”

What is so pleasant about being the servant of somebody else instead of being your own ruler. Do you really think that these people are any better than you are? I have my doubts.

28 January 2007 at 23:29  
Anonymous Voyager said...

In reality from Rome’s perspective the possibility of rapprochement collapsed when the synod chose to ordain women in 1992, I make no comment on Canterbury’s choice,

I agree with your implied view on the ordination of women, but have no wish for Protestantism to unite with Rome - they may be Fellow Pilgrims but they are not the Same Pilgrim

29 January 2007 at 06:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blackmail ? Nonsense.

(and what used to be the CoE Children's Society has long been in the hands of leftist kids-lib advocates. Shame on them)

29 January 2007 at 08:53  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Colin,

I never used to be a Monarchist, quite the opposite in fact and have had quite a few stand up arguments favouring republicanism. Over time I have noted the quiet constancy of the Queen in good times and bad, representing the UK at home and abroad. She has never put a foot wrong, despite severe provocation by the chattering classes. She is independent of party politics, has seen a bunch of PMs come and go and must retain an unparallel wealth of experience regarding Westminster and foreign policies, advising and guiding No 10, and still she continues, faithful to her coronation pledge of 1952 to serve her people. I came to the conclusion you cannot buy that kind of service and republicanism doesn’t mean you don’t ha a head of state, just one chosen for you. As for price I think the Monarch as a whole costs around 4p per person per year (something like that anyway), compare that with any elected political head of state. The armed services all give their oath of allegiance to the queen (not some political commander in chief), every formal mess function (for those acquainted with the services) toasts the Queen, it is not an empty ceremonial function, it is sincere and has meaning. This above anything else stops some power mad PM (anyone spring to mind) from using the forces to impose a military dictatorship in this country, we don't use out military for internal police matters. I would love to know what the Queens advice to his Tonyship was on the debacle that is Iraq. If we were to replace the Queen with an elected President, in what way would that be an improvement for the country, how would a 4-5 year term president better represent Britain’s interests. If I were a Tory how would I feel about my president being a Labour man, would I feel any oath binding if a president from an opposite party became incumbent? As for being a servant, was this not the instruction given to the Decuples by Christ, it in no way diminished individual dignity to serve others, in fact I would say it enhances it, consider Mother Theresa or perhaps Nurses and Teachers, even the clergy, all servants of the people the Queen represents stability, a touchstone for the best that is British, yes my views have changed (perhaps matured would be a better description) and I am not ashamed to say God Save the Queen, though I don’t know if I’ll feel the same about Charley.

29 January 2007 at 11:07  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Voyager,

Today the Anglicans have their own troubles to contend with, this was not always the case. The fall out from the Tractarianism and Oxford movement was a sincere desire by the Anglo Catholics to seek union with Rome, it took time to germinate but by the 1960’s especially with proclaimed aims of Vatican 2 there was (I feel) a genuine desire and understanding that a union could be achieved. The fruit of this new ecumenism was the Anglican - Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC), however this process was somewhat sidelined by the creation of the General Synod in 1970 which effectively democratised the leadership of Anglicanism by to all intents and purposes removing Parliament from that role, so any decisions had to be given assent by not one committee or ecclesiastical body but by numerous, each with its own take on scriptural authority, ecclesiastical unity, evangelisation etc etc the, list goes on. In short talks stalled with this reshaping of the Anglican Communion and the fruits of it became evident in 1992. The ancient, traditional and historic Church in England is Catholicism (settle down separated brethren you know it is), the evidence is spread up and down the land, England is dedicated as the dowry of Mary and will always remain so as is evident by the unprecedented increase in Anglican devotions and pilgrimages to the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham (there is even and Anglican shrine there). I even know of Anglican pilgrimages to Our Lady of Lourdes and Fatima. So we may be pilgrims on separate paths but we are on the same journey and at some point we must join up or else we are going to separate destinations.

29 January 2007 at 11:08  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Ah Recusant I think you must spend too much time in The High Church. I think you will find Protestantism and Calvinism still exist among Anglicans even if the Church treads a primrose path of dalliance as regards Anglicanism and The XXXIX Articles.

When the Church of England breaks apart Protestantism will be freed to become what Elizabeth I prevented and perhaps unchained from the decaying edifice there will be a more dynamic and evangelising Protestantism in the land ready to re-shape institutions and politics in this country and beyond. It was after all Rome's ex-communication of a dissenter that unleashed Protestantism just as it was Rome that cast the Orthodox Church aside.

The beauty of Protestantism is that it cannot be delivered to a patriarch - it is dynamic and resourceful and has no need of the overheads of rites and rituals. Those you know who visit Lourdes are not Anglicans but Crypto-Catholics hiding in a Protestant Church rather than acknowledge The Pope.

29 January 2007 at 11:59  
Anonymous Miss Jelly Bean said...

bob said...

I wasn't drinking champagne as I don't drink alcohol. Even if I did I would feel no need to celebrate as in a discussion there are no winners or losers only a search for the truth. In that Cranmer and I are never more than equals - no winners, no losers, only those seeking the truth - although we may disagree as to what that truth may be.


i must say, i really like the sound of this Bob guy.

29 January 2007 at 18:27  
Anonymous bob said...

I'm an acquired taste.

30 January 2007 at 09:59  
Anonymous Observer said...

Be careful Bob or Miss Jelly Bean will turn you into Mr Bean and that would be leading you astray

30 January 2007 at 11:34  
Anonymous Colin said...

181

21 March 2007 at 17:48  

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