Church of England warns of ‘disastrous’ EU policy
We are, to coin a phrase, associated with Europe but not absorbed. Perhaps Bishop Christopher has forgotten his history, not least because ‘in the long term’ it was very much in Britain’s interest to be isolated from ‘the rest of Europe’. Our economic might and global influence came as a direct consequence of the Reformation: it was the Protestant faith and a Reformed Church which permitted England to run her affairs, without recourse to Rome. Thomas Cromwell drafted the fairly decisive Statute of Appeals which established this: ‘An Act that the appeals in such cases as have been used to be pursued to the See of Rome shall not be from henceforth had nor used but within this realm’.
We are certainly ‘part of Europe, culturally and historically’, and yet we are apart. The Bishop’s Supreme Governor wears the Crown, and Parliament governs in her name. Of course, by virtue of her EU citizenship, she is subject to foreign courts and so no longer sovereign. But what Parliament can give away, it can reassert.
The Bishop said that the European struc¬tures had been ‘created for peace’ after the ‘major wars in the 20th century’. He acknowledged: “The structures need reform and accountability, but you don’t do that by stepping out; you do that by keeping in step with Europe.”
O dear. There is something spiritually, economically and politically naive about this ‘keeping in step with Europe’. It is as though Europe is the way, the truth and the life: all things were made by it, and without it was not anything made which was made.
Both the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church are pathologically predisposed to bouts of Europhilia, sometimes verging on Eurotica. They’ve got Europe Panels, Europe spokesmen and Bishops’ Conferences, all ostensibly concerned with the ‘Soul of Europe’ to ‘encourage the religious communities to present projects meetings, seminars social activities...; to contribute to the recognition and understanding of the ethical and spiritual dimension of European unification and Politics’.
Daniel Hannan MEP observed a few years ago:
As regular readers of this blog will know, one of my own recurrent themes is that the EU always pits the top brass against the Poor Bloody Infantry. This is true of the CBI, the TUC, the NFU, most political parties and, for that matter, most churches. I'll never forget walking past my local parish church in 1992 and seeing, among the prayers being posted, one for "the Maastricht Treaty and peace in Europe".It is time for lay members of both churches to object to this obsessive europhiliac nonsense. Britain is not ‘isolated’: it would not be ‘disastrous’ if we were to leave the EU altogether. It is not for the Shepherds of the Church to instil fear into their flocks. And neither is it their task to help re-create the Empire of Charlemagne.