Friday, November 05, 2010

The Times drags a bishop into the gutter

What do you get if you mix together a once-great newspaper in decline (viz. The Times) with an affable but perhaps less-than-media-savvy religious leader (let’s say the Bishop of Lewes) – and throw in a contentious church issue (for example, the ordination of women bishops) and a possibly careless historical reference (like the second world war, perhaps)?

The answer:

A travesty of justice and disgrace of a front-page news story which portrays a well-intentioned, gracious and thoughtful bishop in the worst possible light.

The front page of Wednesday’s Times was in doubt about the ingredients of the story:

“Campaign for women bishops ‘is like 1939’ – Top cleric causes outrage with Nazi slur”.

The article continued: ‘A leading Church of England cleric has prompted outrage after he compared those who support the ordination of women bishops to the Nazis.’

Now many might think His Grace somewhat traditional, staid, fuddy-duddy and old fashioned in his views. But he makes no apology for his apparently outdated opinion that when there is a ‘story’ there should be some things called ‘facts’ – you know, words that have actually been ‘said’ or deeds that have actually been ‘done’ – a little corroborative evidence to support a contention.

So it is worth inquiring into what ‘facts’ The Times produced to support either the headline or their opening statement of their hysterical headline. Perhaps a quote from the Bishop saying: “Those who support the ordination of women bishops are like goose-stepping Nazis”? Or maybe: “That prominent woman cleric, Rev’d Joanna – you know what, if I’m honest, she’s always reminded me a bit of Goebbels”? Perhaps he likened women’s vestments to brown shirts in some way?

No, not a bit of it.

Because the Bishop in question, Wallace Benn, said no such things. The Times report alludes to what he had said at a recent Reform conference of traditionalist Anglicans.

As a statement from his office made clear: “The Bishop of Lewes never mentioned Hitler or the Nazis in his address at the Reform conference. He said that the situation in which we find ourselves in the Church feels like people probably felt as they viewed the year ahead in January 1939. There are storm clouds on the horizon and warfare around the corner. We all hope and pray that it won’t happen. He also said that the consecration of women bishops should not be a church dividing issue, and will not be, if proper provision is made for those who hold the traditional position, who are equally loyal Anglicans.”

In fact, you can watch and listen to what the Bishop actually said HERE.

And when you have done so, you will see that the Bishop is quite right. He said nothing about Hitler, nothing about the Nazis, nothing about the Holocaust, and at no point did he liken any opponent of women bishops, either by name or in general, to any 1930s Germans.

What he did say was that he feels there’s mighty conflict ahead in the Church of England – a bit like people felt in the run-up to war. And this eventuality, he feels, would be best avoided, if at all possible, by making continuing provision for traditionalist Anglicans. It was actually a plea for peace – ironically re-cast by The Times as a declaration of war.

This is not really a matter of theology: it doesn’t matter whether you agree with the Bishop’s stance against the ordination of women or not. What matters is the way an honourable man, with whose opinions The Times is apparently at odds, has been treated.

But, hey, why let the facts get in the way of a good story? Why not phone up someone like the Chairman of the Holocaust Centre and see if you can get a response to your caricature of Bishop Benn’s comments and place it in the original story even before you have actually quoted from the Bishop himself?

Is that fair?

Is it good journalism?

Is it consistent with their Code of Practice?

And why not follow it up the next day by completely ignoring the Bishop’s clarification and refusing to publish his response?

And why not remain completely silent while the rest of the plagiarising and self-gorging mainstream media feed off the putrid carcase of the original article?

What is particularly disturbing is that the Bishop has explicitly spelt out and affirmed in the story that he did not have Hitler in his mind at all when he made his comments – except in the obvious historical sense that Churchill was facing Hitler at that point in time. He says: “I was thinking in Churchillian terms and not of Hitler at all, except in the sense that Hitler was the problem.”

It then takes one of his opponents, Christina Rees, of ‘Women and the Church’ (Watch) to read into his comments any link between Hitler and women bishops, which certainly suits the angle of the story, but is nowhere reflected in what the Bishop actually said. Conveniently, lest His Grace’s readers and communicants fail to see the line The Times wants to take, Ms Rees is brought in immediately to say: “The clear implication that, as Hitler was the problem then, so women bishops are the problem now, is mind-boggling.” But it’s not a clear implication at all – and anyone watching the Bishop’s original comments online can see the complete absence of such a link, or indeed any reference in these terms whatsoever.

And anyone who knows Wallace Benn knows that he would never, ever make such link. He is simply not that kind of man.

Sally Barnes, also of Watch, said: “I am really sorry that a man who is a Christian is talking in these terms because they do not seem very much in keeping with the Christian way of talking to each other.”

Seems, madam? Why do you not take your complaint to your brother in private and let him explain himself before tearing strips off him in the national media? For that, to His Grace at least, ‘does not seem much in keeping with the Christian way of talking to each other’.

It is apparent that a simple (if perhaps less than ideal) analogy about the potential dangers of out-of-control conflict then and now has been turned into an analogy between supporters of women bishops and Hitler. This is plainly not what the Bishop said or meant, as any clear-headed, neutral and honourable observer (or reporter) can see.

And so an affable, decent and honourable man of God has been portrayed as a schismatic incarnation of evil.

Some of the more recent comments on The Times website rightly protest:

“This is truly terrible journalism. I expect Sun journalists to make stories up, not Times correspondents. The Times should seriously consider whether or not they want to continue working with this woman. Also the Bishop in question should consider legal action.”

“To say and report this as an individual's opinion is fair enough, bishop though he be (even if I do not share that view). But to associate that analogy - a distorted, ignorant and imperfectly developed parallel - with a 'Nazi slur' is just not acceptable in serious journalism. Especially not journalism that covers religious issues.”

“I have watched all of Wallace Benn's comments on the video and there is no place in which he ‘compared those who support the ordination of women bishops to the Nazis’ as you state in the first line of your story.”

“I was present at the Reform Conference when Bishop Benn made his remarks and absolutely no reference as made to the Nazis nor was any connection implied. What the Bishop was saying was that sadly it appears that the issue of Woman Bishops puts the church on the brink of warfare and he could have used any of many 'brink of war' situations as an illustration. He actually chose 1939 to indicate the seriousness of the situation as a war situation and to imply that this means that one side in the struggle over this issue can be likened to Nazism is absolutely wrong and pays no attention to the context in which the comment was made. Certainly the issue causes deep concern but to misinterpret a gracious Christian Bishop in this way is unjust, inexcusable and plain wrong.”

“Think about this rationally, the Rev made a pre-wartime analogy to the inevitable struggles of the CoE over the next 5 years. He based this on the mindset of the British people in Jan 1939 who knew that a fight was coming. NOT that women bishops were Hitler... ‘Bishop causes outrage with Nazi slur’ - Really!?”

But then, as they say, the first casualty of war is truth.


Anonymous Tony B said...

You're right, it was obviously a storm in a teacup when it broke on our local news a day or two ago. His reference to WWII could perhaps have been ill-judged, but he clearly has been misrepresented.

5 November 2010 at 14:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you work for Murdoch you end up following the Murdoch doctrine,Murdoctrine

5 November 2010 at 14:28  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

Indeed. Truth is become harder & harder to find in the MSM (though I prefer Palin's term, "Lame Stream Media"). The Economist remains one of the few sources I give much credibility too.

What is sad is that it is another Christian who appears to have twisted & distorted the meaning and then - as you rightly point out - takes a completely un-Biblical & un-Christian approach to resolving any differences.

I think the only consolation can be that very few people will have actually read the article at all (even amongst the faithful, don't we all just skim over stories that feature a picture of a Bishop - especially the ArchDruid of Canterbury?). And even amongst those who read it, surely the response will have been, "Who gives a damn"?

5 November 2010 at 14:30  
Anonymous Gerard Tibercross said...

Your Grace

When I first dragged myself out of the Tiber on the Anglican bank I was entirely unfazed by threats of women priests. "But if I have doubts about the validity of the orders of women priests," I said in my naivety to the wife of a bishop,"then I just choose to go to another church." "You obviously don't know how the CofE works" replied Mrs Bishop.

Wasn't she right. The radicals have an agenda which falls short of the Christian values I share with Your Grace. Regrettably, Ruth Gledhill of the Times is unable to distinguish a liberal (in the true sense of our broad church) from a radical. This was bad journalism.

Gerard Tibercross

5 November 2010 at 14:35  
Anonymous John thomas said...

Perhaps in the future Cranmer (and his readers) will know the MSM for what it is, and not be surprised by its travesties. I do hope (like me) he always avoids spending any money on newspapers, etc. Cut off the oxygen of revenue, and you'll soon see them fall.

5 November 2010 at 14:42  
Anonymous Bede said...

I have taken The Times for a long time. It is quite a good newspaper in many ways - good news coverage and some good columnists (and some very poor ones).

But as regards Christianity, it has long held to the belief that the task and purpose of the Church is to fall in with whatever the prevailing secular beliefs and values are.

5 November 2010 at 14:43  
Blogger AncientBriton said...

>>Is it consistent with their Code of Practice?<<

The ultra-feminist Women and the Church (WATCH) group know all about (voluntary) Codes of Practice. It is their weapon of choice for the complete emasculation of the Church of England after parity has been achieved.

Anyone wishing to know more about the 'spirituality' of this group can read it here:

WARNING: Avoid the 'Comments' if you are sensitive to the use of the 'C' word.

5 November 2010 at 14:51  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

Mr AncientBriton,

His Grace is fed up of saying that he has no problem at all with the 'C' word: he is both Reformed AND Catholic: his (very infrequent) sensitivity revolves around the abuse of the upper-case 'C'.

5 November 2010 at 14:55  
Blogger Laurence Boyce said...

"But he makes no apology for his apparently outdated opinion that when there is a ‘story’ there should be some things called ‘facts’ – you know, words that have actually been ‘said’ or deeds that have actually been ‘done’ – a little corroborative evidence to support a contention."

Steady on Your Grace. This sort of adherence to facts and evidence leads eventually to atheism. Please try to keep things nice and fuzzy at all times.

5 November 2010 at 15:06  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Lighten up, Your Grace. As least one of those dumb hacks, in the absence of an official press release, actually found the gumption to Google 1939 and discovered it was the year WWII kicked off. ;0)

5 November 2010 at 15:21  
Blogger AncientBriton said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5 November 2010 at 15:26  
Blogger AncientBriton said...

My apologies Your Grace. Although a small 'c' would have been more appropriate, c*** would have been altogether less confusing for your many readers.

5 November 2010 at 15:32  
Blogger Anabaptist said...

Whilst I have very little sympathy with the C of E as a concept or as an institution (though I have a high regard for many of its members), my opinion of The Times is lower. It is amazing that they now charge people to access their on-line version. I would have expected them to offer to pay people to read it.

5 November 2010 at 15:37  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's possibly worth pointing out that Christina Rees no longer has any position or authority within WATCH - she was gently retired by the group a year or two back for being a loose cannon and generally a bit of a liability.

5 November 2010 at 16:14  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...

I am with Anabaptist on this one, no sympathy. The truth was put in the gas chamber a long time ago.

5 November 2010 at 16:35  
Blogger Span Ows said...

Anonymous 5 November 2010 14:28 said...

If you work for Murdoch you end up following the Murdoch doctrine,Murdoctrine

Totally irrelvant as all the other media do it too (maybe you're BBc so have time on your hands to post comments here)

Your Grace is perfectly correct in this: The Times has fallen as has The Daily Telegraph in other recent stories each vying with gutter tabloids for eye-catching (forget the truth) headlines.

5 November 2010 at 16:53  
Anonymous Oswin said...

This is grotesque, and these days all too familiar.

It often seems to me, that the media is unable to cope with the threat of Islam, so turns about and savages its own. It is something that dogs do, when frightened...

5 November 2010 at 16:59  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...

Your Grace

As Rolf Harris says, Sometimes all of our thoughts are misgiven.

5 November 2010 at 17:01  
Anonymous Pageantmaster said...

Ah, The Times. I really don't know of anyone who bothers to read it since it was immured behind the Murdoch paywall Perhaps it is available as a package to those with Sky who can read.

5 November 2010 at 18:08  
Blogger Preacher said...

It's pitiful to see a good man attacked without cause, but as time goes on we should all expect to be on the recieving end of unwarranted slurs & criticism.
It's almost as bad to see a once great newspaper sink lower than the Titanic or even the News of The World.

5 November 2010 at 18:15  
Anonymous Sigfrid said...

The reporter in question should never have been promoted from the ballroom dancing column to a slot which requires comprehension of polysyllabic words. But when a blond catches the editor's eye....

5 November 2010 at 19:36  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that Nazir Ali's gone, who else is left to kick the boot into ...

5 November 2010 at 19:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5 November 2010 at 19:46  
Blogger Revd John P Richardson said...

The mistake was to invite the press to the Reform conference. But of course the press are always interested in a 'story'. In future, I trust Reform will be more cautious.

5 November 2010 at 20:15  
Anonymous Will Jones said...

@ Canon Sugden,

Actually, if you take his claim of referring to Jan '39, the images conjured up should be very different.

Confusion, the threat of another war too soon after the last, a population that is mostly, if not supportive, at least sympathetic to Germany, isolation, fear, and horror at the news coming from China (WW2 started in 1937, not 1939 - that was only the western form). The biggest thing that would have been felt is that something big was coming and that life was now uncertain and people were clinging to hopes of peace (irrationally so with the benefit of hindsight).

In Jan 1939, the actions of the Nazis were, though violent and immoral, remarkably commonplace throughout the continent. If he had evoked the war proper in the 1940, it would have evoked a different response due to the Blitz, Dunkirk, Battle of Britain etc. Another point in the war, another response.

Of course, coming to this understanding of the imagery that the bishop was trying to evoke actualy requires an understanding of the war above what is taught in schools and shown in movies. It is no surprise that in a society that no longer actually listens to what is said and has no knowledge of things beyond their ken, that people (the Times et al) only hear what they want to hear.

5 November 2010 at 21:44  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5 November 2010 at 23:19  
Anonymous Jill said...

Whoever left the comment in the name of Canon Sugden at 19.46, it was NOT Canon Sugden.

5 November 2010 at 23:23  
Anonymous Jill said...

Likewise the comment at 23.19. Your grace, this person is an impostor.

5 November 2010 at 23:25  
Anonymous John Knox said...

Your Grace,

If you look at the absolute intolerant and ruthless way that hatchet jobs have been and are being performed against honourable men in episcopalian and uniting church movements worldwide, the comparison of the woman's ordination movement with the nazis in the 1930's (before the murders, wars and deathcamps)perhaps would not have been out of place entirely.

Don't agree with Hitler? No job for you.

Don't agree and supportively work with woman's ordination? No longer any job for you in a church that held and proclaimed your view for thousands of years.

Prefer traditional worship services? No longer any for you.

Uncomfortable with gender hangups?
We will make sure we force it down your throat and make your Sundays miserable.

The nazis didn't have respect for decent people with traditional values.

How should one describe the treatment Jim Packer received?
As decent and acceptable practice? As outstanding Christian performance by a loving sisterhood in sweet communion with Canterbury?

OR does it have more resemblance to
what happened in Germany during the 1930's?

It is extremely worrying that in this debate one side may lie, misrepresent and ruthlessly oust, while the other side is not allowed to even express legitimate fears and concern for charitable communion, without being publicly crucified and misrepresented.

Laws apply to some, not to others. Didn't we see the same in Hitler Germany of the 1930's. Political correctness meant: agree with Hitler. Now it means: agree with multifaith, multicultis, multisex and woman bishops. If you don't, you are politically incorrect and obviously misbehaving.

If you are important enough in her eyes, Ms Goebles is willing to make life miserable for you with one more propaganda article in The Times. To (re-)educate you and the nation in the ways of correctness.

Wish we had more righteousness in Church and Nation.

6 November 2010 at 01:25  
Anonymous Ed Tomlinson said...

I would venture it is more than careless but a deliberate attempt to link in the minds of readers those opposed to women's ordination on theological grounds with intolerance.

I too was mentioned in the Times in connection with this story. Why? Because someone scoured my images on my blog and found that one of them, a period photo of people listening which accompanied a post called listen again, was in fact a portrayal of a Nazi family listening to Hitler.

I explained clearly it was an honest mistake and that i had NO idea of the pictures origins (there is no uniform or swastika in sight) but still it has been run.

It caused me to write another blog post

I think orthodox Christians need to get used to this rough treatment. Our views are salt to this world and the media machine now exists to peddle the secular values of Europe...

6 November 2010 at 07:04  
Blogger Simon Harley said...

Your Grace, to your knowledge has anybody actually rung up and complained to "The Times"? Perhaps you could gather your ashes and make the call?

6 November 2010 at 08:58  
Blogger David Baker said...

I believe comments can be made via - they do read them, so it is worth a shot.
Best wishes
David Baker

6 November 2010 at 09:34  
Anonymous Indigo said...

Well, for what it's worth, I think the Bishop was a simpleton fatuously to try to equate the run up to WORLD war and the intellectual/emotional conflict over women bishops, and he deserves the ridicule that this has brought on his head.

I mean, in this campaign between those who are for and those against women bishops, how many millions of terrified people are going to die blown to bits in mud-filled trenches far from home and their loved ones? Get a grip.

The Church of England clergy is stuffed with weak-brained nincompoops like this one, unfortunately. It is so alienating.

6 November 2010 at 10:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6 November 2010 at 10:54  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

His Grace is becoming intolerant of imposters whose contributions might be a cause of distress to others.

Please desist.

6 November 2010 at 11:04  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...


Yes it is alienating - but it's the conservative party at prayer and what more can we expect? I don't know if I would call them simpletons because some of the bloated waffle that emanates from those quarters is quite outstanding in it's verbose complexity. It's difficult to outline all the things that are wrong with the Anglican church in a short comment on a blog so I will indulge in sweeping statements and sum it up as being up its own arse and out of touch with ordinary people who have to wrestle with the daily chores and mundane management of human existence in the 21st century. It's outstanding in its arrogance and abuse of self assuming privilege. Sometimes I find it hard having to agree with some of Graham Davis's objections but it can be a difficult paradox for anyone who choses to pray to the Christian God while having to swallow the bloated waffle of the Anglican church.

6 November 2010 at 11:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace

What is really happening here?

The Left-liberals take every opportunity to slander, libel, mock, subvert and convert us into a fringe subculture that exists in alleyway just off the public square.

If we are against women priests we are described as sexist and by implication the moral equivalent of racist.

If we dare to defend the unborn we are called fascist for opposing women’s rights.

If we challenge the delegitimisation of Israel we are called racist.

If we point out that the Narnia series of films were box-office hits compared to The Golden Compass we are called liars.

If we contest the arguments for euthanasia we are accused of prolonging people’s pain.

If we present arguments against the EU tyranny we are described as Little Englanders.

If we defend the sanctity of marriage we are accused of being Victorian.

We are being sacked from our jobs. For what? For being Christian. We are being driven from the public square. We are being sheared.

We are being accused of being Christian. That is the point Western culture has arrived at – after 2,000 years of Judaeo-Christianity.

‘I avail myself with relief of the opportunity of speaking to the people of the United States. I do not know how long such liberties will be allowed. The stations of uncensored expression are closing down; the lights are going out; but there is still time for those to whom freedom and parliamentary government mean something, to consult together. Let me, then, speak in truth and earnestness while time remains…

‘It is no good using hard words among friends about the past, and reproaching one another for what cannot be recalled. It is the future, not the past, that demands our earnest and anxious thought. We must recognize that the Parliamentary democracies and liberal, peaceful forces have everywhere sustained a defeat which leaves them weaker, morally and physically, to cope with dangers which have vastly grown. But the cause of freedom has in it a recuperative power and virtue which can draw from misfortune new hope and new strength….

‘There is another question which arises out of this. Can peace, goodwill, and confidence be built upon submission to wrong-doing backed by force?...

‘Has any benefit or progress ever been achieved by the human race by submission to organised and calculated violence? As we look back over the long story of the nations we must see that, on the contrary, their glory has been founded upon the spirit of resistance to tyranny and injustice, especially when these evils seemed to be backed by heavier force. Since the dawn of the Christian era a certain way of life has slowly been shaping itself among the Western peoples, and certain standards of conduct and government have come to be esteemed…

‘A state of society where men may not speak their minds, where children denounce their parents to the police, where a business man or small shopkeeper ruins his competitor by telling tales about his private opinions; such a state of society cannot long endure if brought into contact with the healthy outside world. The light of civilised progress with its tolerances and co-operation, with its dignities and joys, has often in the past been blotted out. But I hold the belief that we have now at last got far enough ahead of barbarism to control it, and to avert it, if only we realise what is afoot and make up our minds in time. We shall do it in the end. But how much harder our toil for every day's delay!...

Winston S. Churchill, 16 October 1938

6 November 2010 at 13:30  
Blogger Topper said...

When Bishop Benn made his remark he also should have explained his analogy.

To me, it seems clear that he was referring simply to the fact that many people in January 1939 could see war coming on the horizon and that, without explicit efforts to avoid it, it would certainly arrive, to the great disadvantage of everybody concerned. This was all he intended to imply, nothing more.

Unfortunately, he didn't make the application of his analogy very clear, and left his remarks open to misinterpretation and distortion.

Unhappily, at this time, it seems to me that there are some people who are not particularly interested in truth, and who will unscrupulously use something like this to advance their own cause, with complete disregard for the good reputations of others.

6 November 2010 at 13:44  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace

This is from the Church Times (March, 2008):

Dr Packer, together with three other clerics at the church, received a “Notice of Presumption of Abandonment of the Exercise of the Ministry” from the Bishop New Westminster, the Rt Revd Michael Ingham, which states that they have “publicly renounced the doctrine and discipline” of the Canadian Church.

Explaining the parish’s move in a series of recorded interviews on YouTube, Dr Packer said New Westminster’s decision to allow same-sex blessings was “a denial of something that’s integral to the Christian gospel. . .
“The Bible says that same-sex unions are off-limits as far as God is concerned, and the gospel requires anyone who has been involved in them to repent of that involvement and abandon it.”

Let’s read that again:

‘…they [Dr Jim Packer] have “publicly renounced the doctrine and discipline” of the Canadian Church.’

Are they mad? Is that not an example of Nazi-style propaganda? Does not that imply that it is the Left-liberal who is behaving like the National Socialist?

It is ‘they [the Left-liberals who] have “publicly renounced the doctrine and discipline” of the Canadian Church.’

"After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory. And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, 'Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a habitation of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird!'" (Revelation 18:1,2).

"And I heard another voice from heaven saying, 'Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. For her sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities'" (Revelation 18:4,5).

6 November 2010 at 14:19  
Anonymous Bede said...

Regarding the Narnia films, check with Touchstone (Nov-Dec 2010) "Narnia Invaded".

In general, supporters of women bishops (including The Times) focus only on the supposed 'fear' and 'misogyny' of those opposing women bishops, and ignore (or are ignorant of) all theological objections. They do not understand that this issue is only the catalyst; it is an obvious sympton of the whole way much of the Anglican Church is going, led by TEC.

6 November 2010 at 14:34  
Anonymous She who refutes feminism said...

Bede @ 14:34 -- As usual, I think you were right first time! :)

Advocates for female bishops tend deliberately to ignore or misconstrue all objections in their path. They play nothing better than their own "game," in which meconnaissance is merely strategy.

Feminists practice a principal -ism, to which they apply marxist ploys with "passionate intensity." Opponents thus suffer deconstruction through accusations of mental illness (e.g. phobia, schizoid fragmentation) and whatever filth-of-the day the comrades choose either to wallow in, or to invent.

In my experience, when Feminist women growl "misogyny" they also indulge misandry. I'm sure the most ambitious of them have explored the anatomy of power; and so they understand that power, not gender, impels rape (or 'types' thereof).

In my final analysis, '-ism-ists' are overgrown (often "sophisticated") playground bullies. That is also to suggest that they suffer from the Peter Pan Syndrome.

Your Grace, I submit that they're the ones who will not grow up: someone who wishes to demolish (empty) alien constructions - those built by our enemies against our interests.

6 November 2010 at 17:13  
Anonymous She who refutes feminism said...

Sorry - that should read "NOT someone who wishes to demolish empty alien constructions -"

6 November 2010 at 17:18  
Anonymous Indigo said...

I speak as a woman who is as emancipated as the next woman but the campaign for women bishops seems to be fueled by a sort of female supremicist drive. Ie if female, ergo better. The church I attend recently commissioned some graphic design; the "choice" was supposed to be between three designers but the ball-breaking member of the PCC who was coordinating the exercise quickly dismissed two of them and shoed-in the third, telling us almost straightaway that she was "a lesbian". I have never before been at a design commission meeting where the sexual orientation of the candidate weighed heavier than the actual talents of the candidate. It was all (bullying) downhill after that.

6 November 2010 at 17:51  
Blogger Chelliah Laity said...

Leaving aside the debate over whether you are an inny or outty over women Bishops can't people see that the analogy drawn with 1939 is just foolish-to put it mildly? No amount of dressing up can disguise the fact that the Bishop clearly was referring to the onset of WW2 and Nazism. No one can convince me that the Bishop meant to refer to the Black Friday fires in Australia which happened in January 1939.

6 November 2010 at 18:07  
Blogger Span Ows said...

...Chelliah, in January that year there was no WW2...Nazism hadn't by then grown into what we associate it with now; what was ahead was worrying but unknown: will it all be OK?... will it all end in tears? ...will the world be destroyed? A great unknown that some feared and others ignored and others knew little of.

6 November 2010 at 19:39  
Blogger Chelliah Laity said...

On 30 January 1939 Hitler gave a speech to the Reichstag: 'Europe cannot find peace until the Jewish question has been solved...the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe'. Yes, WW2 hadn't started then but I think people who lived through it will dispute our academic perspective about precise times and dates. However, I my point was about the climate of fear that was growing in 1939 about a great monstrosity and evil that may strike and the comparison drawn with any ensuing furore should the ordination of women Bishops be voted for.

6 November 2010 at 20:54  

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