Monday, February 10, 2014

General Synod meets to discuss salvation, redemption and evangelism feminism, gayness and fashion

The General Synod of the Church of England meets in London today (and tomorrow, and on Wednesday). As far as the media are concerned, there are only two items on the agenda - women bishops and all things gay.

Because that's all the Church ever talks intensely about - gender and sexuality; specifically feminism and gayness. These raise the strongest emotions, for and against. Is it acceptable for two men to marry, or two women to be blessed? Can they say, "God made us this way?" Is same-sex relationship a bar to ordination? "Why does the Church bless hamsters, buildings and trees, but not a sincere, monogamous homosexual union?" These are matters of value, justice and equality. 

And it's true that the main item of business is the Revision Stage for the draft legislation to enable women to become bishops. In an unusual move, this will be taken on the floor of the Synod without there having been a prior Revision Committee. There will also be three other debates as part of the women bishops process: on the Declaration and Disputes Resolution Procedure agreed by the House of Bishops in December; to initiate the process to rescind the 1993 Act of Synod; and to suspend part of the Standing Orders in order to accelerate the process for referring the legislation to the dioceses.

But there will also be important debates on gender-based violence, the Girl Guides’ Promise, the environment and fossil fuels. 

These won't get so much coverage from the media.

Well, the Girl Guides' Promise might, but only in the context of how anachronistic and absurd such oaths are in this secular age of enlightenment.

And fossil fuels might, in the context of how irresponsible the Church is to support fracking.

And the environment might, because it has been a bit wet lately.

But the second main item of business will be a presentation from the House of Bishops Working Group on Human Sexuality.  Sir Joseph Pilling will participate, and he will explain the genius of his via media on gay marriage.

This will comprehensively eclipse the motion from the Guildford Diocesan Synod on Magna Carta, because that's far less titillating.

It will also overshadow the presentation on ethical investment by the Ethical Investment Advisory Group, which will give an overview of the Church of England’s approach to ethical investment, in particular the work it has done on reflecting the Church’s position on alcohol more faithfully, and supporting purposeful investment in business. That's just one big yawn.

Pilling might be fused in some people's minds with the debate on legislative change in relation to child safeguarding, which has been developed in response to the reports of the Chichester commissaries. This includes making it easier to suspend clergy, or bring complaints against them when abuse is alleged, enabling bishops to compel clergy to undergo risk assessments and imposing a duty on relevant persons to have regard to the House of Bishops’ safeguarding policies.

So it's kind of all about women bishops, gay marriage and paedophiles, really.

The Archbishop of Canterbury will give a Presidential Address on Wednesday.

But nobody will be overly concerned with that, unless he has a go at Wonga or says something which may be interpreted as a "split" or "schism".

Oh, His Grace almost forgot.

There's a Private Member's Motion (a kind of EDM) to be moved by the Rev'd Christopher Hobbs, which calls on the General Synod to amend Canon B8 so that the wearing of the forms of vesture referred to in that Canon "becomes optional rather than mandatory". The media will like that one, too.

So it's really all about women bishops, gay marriage, paedophiles and fashion.

Welcome to the Vogue Synod.

His Grace really must look into being co-opted.


Blogger Len said...

Well the gospel of Jesus Christ causes offence so best probably to keep quite about that especially in Church.

10 February 2014 at 08:35  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Take any subject, area of the world or anything really, and the mainstream media tells its public very little about what is really happening because of its narrow focus on particular fixations. So we should not be surprised when the same applies to the C of E.

It is no wonder that truth and democracy are endangered when the media are failing in their role.

10 February 2014 at 09:14  
Blogger Len said...

The role of the Media is to promote whatever their masters tell them to promote.

We see the spread of secularism throughout our whole education system.
We see the media pushing anti Christian propaganda constantly.

The Media are just puppets having their strings pulled by a few unelected elites.

10 February 2014 at 09:32  
Blogger BrianSJ said...

Len's first comment has the right of it. However, Papa Fransisco seems to have no such qualrms. He seems to be "preaching the gospel" or somesuch?

10 February 2014 at 09:44  
Blogger Andrew Evans said...

I'm bit quite sure why everyone commenting is blaming the media for this - none none of the items on the Synod's Agenda are about evangelising the nation so the media can't really report on such discussions can they?

10 February 2014 at 10:18  
Blogger Martin said...

I'll stand with Len's comment.

BTW, why does the Church (of England as opposed the Church) bless hamsters, buildings and trees.

10 February 2014 at 10:38  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

I have been part of the Anglican Church for many years and I have never seen blessings for hamsters, buildings and trees.

This is prime "Vicar of Dibley" material


10 February 2014 at 10:55  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

What a complete farce. To those Anglicans in despair at the antics of the Synod it might help to read the obituary of the Rev Christopher Courtauld, who died last month – a reminder that there are still many people in the Church of England to look up to and emulate.

It seems that the CofE is languishing about thirty years behind the times, now obsessing over issues which were a mainstream preoccupation in the 1980s and 1990s – wimmin, gays, sexuality, inclusion, etc. I'm surprised they don't have a session on communicating with dolphins, crystal channelling and Wicca.

Take heart, like the rest of society the CofE will gradually get over it, the current batch of leaders will retire and, sooner or later, it will rediscover its soul.

The same thing happened with my lot – the Catholics – utterly attacked by God hating secularists/socialists, assorted weirdoes, pervy priests (trained to be so by very dodgy seminaries) and so on. What the Catholic Church realised was that its enemies had given up trying to change the Church from without, instead infiltrating its institutions from within, to devastating effect.

It has emerged from the furnace much stronger and with a clearer sense of what it is and what it is for. By reasserting its mission (led heroically by Pope Benedict and carried forward by Pope Francis), by clearing out the 'filth', it is more popular and relevant internationally than ever, the attacks on it weaker and more desperate – witness last week's pathetic UN 'report' on the Catholic Church, which rightly garnered less publicity than the auction of the Pope's motorbike.

If the Church of England's parishes stick to their Bible and prayer book, the wonderful history and relevance of the CofE will win out. It is, after all, the repository of the heart and soul of England.

10 February 2014 at 11:09  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

It is worrying how the script seems to be written from outside those main concerns which you would expect a Christian church to have. I lament how some really lovely people in the Church have been so unwilling to think anything bad about anyone that they have mostly fallen for the global warming myth completely, and thus become complicit in the "heat or eat" dilemna of the elderly and the poor, by negligence.

As for the paedophile issue, I am amazed at how the media blame the Church so much, when the media is so dirt-ridden in this respect, as sadly are the politicians. Ironically I suspect that the church has actually a smaller % than media, entertainment and the political industry, but that is not the impression given. Has the BBC ever had to pay compensation for foisting upon us all a video called "Stranger Danger" hosted by probably the worst paedophile in the country? Why was one of Mrs T's aides a known paedophile? Why did not every public figure associated with Saville clearly and forcefully disassociate themselves? One has to ask oneself these questions until one begins to have a purchase on the answers.

As for the C of E it could be brought down by compensation payouts if its enemies try to push through and encourage payouts to those abused under all those gruesome Chichester cases, and others. (So could any main political party, the RC church, some schools or many media outlets.) Many of these enemies would not be concerned that they were being grossly hypocritical. So we must watch and pray, and this is a vital issue, unlike some of the others.

10 February 2014 at 11:35  
Blogger Busy Mum said...

Our Bishop regularly blesses school halls, footpaths, gardens.....I have seen churches advertising Pet Blessing services....I thought the whole point was that we humans have souls (which live on after death)but hamsters, buildings and trees are soulless and once dead or destroyed are gone for ever.

Correct me if I am wrong but I cannot think of a single other religion which has abandoned its articles to such an extent.

As for destroying within, isn't that what the RC's started doing to the C of E during the late 1800's? One would have thought the RC church would distance itself from the CofE over issues like women vicars, sexual liberality etc but instead, as the CofE has liberalised, the RC church has been more and more willing to close the gap. I guess that is because the RC church knows the CofE is getting it wrong and is on the broad road to destruction and this is after all what RC's pray for every day isn't it? So RC's won't condemn the antics of the CofE because it helps their cause.

10 February 2014 at 12:14  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Lucy, you make a good point about how widespread organisational child abuse is. The paedophilia scandal from the 1960s to the present day, a scandal that had affected all organisations responsible for the welfare of children, is so clearly a consequence of sordid liberal ideals around sexuality and general permissiveness that you would need to be blind to pretend it is exclusively a phenomenon of religion. For example, it is entirely clear from the data that those countries and diocese in the Catholic Church that were most affected were those with the most 'forward thinking' ideas around sexuality, having departed from strict Church teachings around priestly celibacy, etc.

The fear of compensation chasers is a very real one, of course, and it is highly naïve to think that all cases are necessarily genuine. Witness the complete farce of the Magdalene Laundries, or the more recent propaganda exercise 'Philomena' to get an idea of how truth is distorted or abandoned. Also, for example, the pompous moralising of the UN, a secular organisation that seems to hate religion yet whose own 'peacekeeping' troops have too often been accused of engaging in sexual violence, especially against the young.

10 February 2014 at 12:16  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10 February 2014 at 12:23  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

This is what happens when you create a "broad church." You get debates about things that shouldn't be debated. Why? Because you no longer have agreement on essentials. Mutually exclusive concepts about God and man lead to diametrically opposed positions. Common ground evaporates, and the Church becomes a Hobbesean struggle for dominance.

Do you want this to end? Then excise liberalism from the church. Defrock them. Put them out. Disemploy them. If Liberals control the infrastructure then seize back control. If this is not possible, then separate yourself. There is no other answer.

This is what happens when you mix true religion with false religion. It's like Solomon bringing idols know his house. The only solution is to remove the presence of the idol.


10 February 2014 at 12:25  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Busy Mum,

I don't ever remember praying for the destruction of the Church of England, as my comments should make very clear – a touch of paranoia on your part I suspect.

My point is that the path the CofE is on regarding these issues is one trod already by the Catholic Church, so there may be some lessons to be learnt about how to navigate through turbulent seas.

10 February 2014 at 12:34  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Phil

I have heard of, but never attended, "Blessing of the Pets" services, and I imagine these would include hamsters. I would not trust our rather large (gentle) dog with being able to understand that hamsters were not food on legs so would never try one!! However it is a mystery to me as to which species and how many animals have souls and how many do not. I am clear mine does from personal day to day contact, and the way one's conscience is applied to by the dog, quite shamelessly!! Looks of reproach, loyalty, enormous love, and guilt when caught nose down bin-raiding point only one way! But I think hamsters don't have that range!

@ Ars. Yes, agree about organisational abuse. The evidence is that like employs like, and once you have a proportion of child abusers in an institution with access to children they then employ and promote others of their ilk assiduously. Any risk assessment,pyschological profiling, or indeed gift of discernment or word of knowledge which weeds potential abusers out before ordaining them can only be a blessing.

I agree that not all compensation seekers will not be genuine given human nature, which is very cruel to the genuine as it is a gruesome ordeal for them to tell and relive their stories (whereas for the fake it isn't). However I fear given the difficulty of proving such things the balance is very much in favour of the guilty getting off and the victim being hurt yet once more. However there are anti-Church forces who would like to see grossly disproportionate payouts to the genuine victims, all church cases pushed to the front of the queue while others were damped down, and a media storm that centred unjustly upon the church. I wish this was not so, but the evidence shows that it is.

10 February 2014 at 12:40  
Blogger Busy Mum said...

Ars Hendrik
But the RC church has not liberalised at all over women, sexual behaviour etc. The CofE seems to regularly review and update its beliefs and as a result it has become a laughing stock. It is basically saying that it got it wrong last year/five/ten/one hundred years ago whereas I cannot see that the RC has changed its doctrines at all. So why this paradox of the RC embracing the CofE ever closer even though morally the two are drifting further apart?

10 February 2014 at 12:41  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Ars Hendrik @ 11.09

Yes I agree that different Churches can learn from one another. At grass roots level this is happening more than we realize.

I would also rehearse one of my usual "lines", that within the C of E is a core, a faithful core, that adheres to Scripture and the Prayer Book, although necessarily often put into contemporary language.

This core is slowly growing and will continue doing so, I am confident. Faced with a choice between quality and quantity, like a recent Pope said, I think that an orthodox, faithful few is better than a heterodox crowd. Craving "relevance" is the path to destruction. Growth in numbers will flow from sticking with the Christian truth. Eventually the C of E will learn that. The task of the core is to keep the lights on until then.

10 February 2014 at 12:55  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Busy Mum

Well, of course the CofE most definitely ploughs a different furrow than Rome and has done since the Reformation.

I think the Catholic Church and the CofE are members of Churches Together in England, though not in full communion. I seem to remember Pope Benedict asking for the restoration of full communion between the two, not to 'merge' both churches, but to make a stand against rampant secularism, which is a threat to both.

If I had to make a long-term prediction for the CofE it would be that it is going to exhaust itself in the pursuit of these issues, in much the same way that secular society is exhausting itself in its obsession with them. The cracks in the secularist free-for-all utopia are beginning to show and I suspect that future generations of Anglicans will demand exactly what most of the bloggers here demand – a return to pre-1960s Anglicanism. It may seem like a distant dream now, but give it twenty or so years.

10 February 2014 at 12:55  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Busy Mum

But do not think the RC church has not got its problems. Breakaway grous for instance like that led by Sinead O'Connor. There has also been a female Pope, Pope Joan, (and yes, I have researched that one and it is the most plausible account of the circumstances) and she was competent.

I can see no problem at all with women priests and there are some very competent priests and preachers around. I could name many names, but they would prefer me not to probably. Americans are a little more practised and confident preachers on average than the British at present, even British exports to the US like Jill Briscoe are more so. When you encounter orthodox competent women your opposition will melt, like the two husbands of traditionalist women priests who I know, who have changed sides over this one. It is after all a matter of what you have in your head and your spirit that counts in mental and spiritual matters, not what biology you possess in your mid regions!

10 February 2014 at 12:58  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...


Couldn't agree more.

The Catholic Church in America went through the worst of it in the 1980s, a situation described by Donna Steichen in her excellent and meticulously researched 1991 book, Ungodly Rage: The Hidden Face of Catholic Feminism.

Steichen concluded that the true faithful, the Christians you describe, would need to rebuild from the foundations up, from the very catacombs from which the faith first began, as she put it.

It is difficult to think of a more worthy task to devote one's life to.

10 February 2014 at 13:03  
Blogger WindsorBloke said...

One of the CofE's problems is synodical governance, synod being a magnet for crackpots and single-issue fanatics.

Lord Harries described a deanery synod as "a group of Anglicans waiting to go home", and having once made the mistake of volunteering to by my church's representative for one year, I can only agree with him. It was a complete and utter waste of time, except of course for the committee anoraks who revel in that sort of petty bureaucracy.

In my experience, the majority of the "active" Anglican laity are quietly doing good work in their own parishes without wanting or expecting recognition or material reward. The palpably bonkers struggle to climb up the synod hierarchy.

10 February 2014 at 13:09  
Blogger Flossie said...

Your Grace, this is what happens when the church takes a wrong turn, as it did with ordaining women with no proper theological examination. It should have said a clear NO to both issues right from the start instead of caving in to pressure groups, then we would not be having these time-wasting and energy-sapping debates.

Pussyfooting around with 'facilitated conversations' just prolongs the agony.

10 February 2014 at 13:15  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Flossie

What is your evidence for the assertion that there was no proper theological examination. Just off the top of my head without clarifying research I can tell you that work was done, for instance on the word "lalentein" and Scripture was quoted, for instance "In Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile, slave nor free, male nor female.." . Theological work does go on around the clock. That you don't agree with others' conclusions is a different matter, but on this matter there was no lack of theological debate. It is simply inaccurate to suggest that people only went with the flow.

People are hard put to make arguments about the difference between men and women that describe women in the way that women inwardly and outwardly encounter themselves. I do not find myself nor my female relations nor friends as substandard, little dolly like creatures obsessed with make-up and cooking, so do not see the sense in treating us as such. As for the nonsense argument that only someone male can "play" Jesus in some kind of role play at the altar-that fails to understand the difference between ritual and drama, and by the same reasoning the Atonement was only for Jewish heterosexual single men. It is important not to be entangled by illogicalities, and to use all the best resources God has given us wisely, and not to be found burying people's talents, for the Church needs to put its best foot forward whilst under siege.

10 February 2014 at 13:33  
Blogger Ged Robinson said...

"Pilling might be fused in some people's minds with the debate on legislative change in relation to child safeguarding," Who conflates homosexuality with paedophilia?

10 February 2014 at 13:37  
Blogger Ged Robinson said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10 February 2014 at 13:47  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


So some animals are in, but some are out of the blessings routine. Blessing the Ebola Virus is presumably out as presumably are spiders, snakes, ants and flies.

Dogs are OK, but not hamsters, wolves or cows. What about horses and pigs?

What plants are in?


10 February 2014 at 14:06  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Ged

I have not yet met anyone here who conflates the two, but there are different interpretations in how we would intersect the two circles if asked to take a stab at drawing a Venn diagram with two intersecting circles to illustrate our observations. We have to take the instruction to be "wise as serpents and gentle as doves" as a commandment of Our Lord to be exercised with due diligence and not with wilfully wishy-washy wishful thinking.

A week's worth of alliteration there!

10 February 2014 at 14:07  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Phil

Search me! To borrow (and alter) from Hopkins, why not
"greet [them].. when you meet [them,] and bless when [you] understand."

Nothing wrong with working hypotheses and not being too impatient with mysteries!

10 February 2014 at 14:11  
Blogger Old Blue Eyes said...

"His Grace really must look into being co-opted."

If His Grace can find it in his heart to forgive perhaps he might also take with him Lord (Chris) Smith. After all he is an expert on environmental matters and the gay life.

10 February 2014 at 14:18  
Blogger non mouse said...

Ged Robinson @ 13:37 -Who conflates homosexuality with paedophilia? Oh, a lot of people who say it springs from the the mind - those who also associate it with other forms of child abuse.

10 February 2014 at 15:30  
Blogger Ged Robinson said...

Aren't the majority of child sex offenders heterosexual?

10 February 2014 at 15:37  
Blogger Corrigan said...

Possibly, Ged, though not in the Catholic Church. Strange how that little morsel rarely gets mentioned within the liberal media.

10 February 2014 at 15:40  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Ged

Well I have never heard of boy cathedral choristers being warned about lecherous women coming to watch them, showing far too much interest in them, and offering them sweets, but maybe you have?

10 February 2014 at 15:48  
Blogger Anglican said...

The CofE is indeed a very broad church, covering a range of what would otherwise be different denominations – Conservative Evangelicals, Liberal Evangelicals, Broad Church Liberals, Liberal Catholics & Conservative Catholics. The first and last have much in common - much more so than with the rest of them, which are following in the footsteps of The Episcopal Church in America (to be shortly renamed The Church of the Apostasy).

On a different tack, why do some make ‘global warming’ into a matter (apparently) of ideology, if not theology. It would be worth while checking thoroughly the website Whether you accept its scientific arguments or not, it would be very helpful if more of us were aware of the facts, instead of relying on ideology.

10 February 2014 at 15:56  
Blogger Ged Robinson said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10 February 2014 at 15:56  
Blogger Esther Rachma said...

& I notice on twitter that the ethical investment debate is being tweeted about as boring by the journalists - just to prove your point your grace

10 February 2014 at 16:05  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Do you want this to end? Then excise liberalism from the church. Defrock them. Put them out. Disemploy them. If Liberals control the infrastructure then seize back control. If this is not possible, then separate yourself. There is no other answer.--Carl

Ha ha ha !Oh yeah?

Excise liberalism from the church... Hate speech, racism, sexism, homophobia. Human rights codes, lawyers.

Defrock them... Job equity, gender equality. More lawyers. Human rights tribunals. "Crucifixion" by the press and governments.

Disemploy them... Even more lawyers. Employment law, contract law, collective agreements. Courts, labour boards, discoveries, years of undertakings.

If this is not possible, then separate yourself. There is no other answer. Currently the last viable option. Bit hard, though with big denominations who have monopoly on identity. Also, probes into compelling congregants/parishioners to continue financial support of the deserted institution on the grounds of an implied promise, understanding or contract have been floated, I heard. If this starts happening, the desperate will try anything.

Ars Hendrick has it right; wait for the ageing hippies and quacks to retire, with their pension plans before anything will happen. I'm thinking, to accelerate the process before everyone gets bored, hold your nose and shower them with nice bonuses, awards, lifetime memberships to organic produce outlets (E.coli could be your friend), crystal mobiles and cheap brass plaques if they agree to retire early. Then drive them out to the pasture in hybrid trucks powered by unicorn farts, shoo them in and chain up the turnstiles.

10 February 2014 at 16:26  
Blogger John Thomas said...

""Why does the Church bless hamsters, buildings and trees, but not a sincere, monogamous homosexual union?"" - well, you've set us a poser there, Cranmer ... mm ... must think a bit ... I know: Could it be something to do with the fact that Christianity has considered male sex a sin for 2,000 years, and the Judaic tradition for many millenia before that? No, you mean people in the Church, who call themselves "Christians", don't realise that? No! (Hamsters, well they're not sinful obviously ... I think ...)

10 February 2014 at 16:43  
Blogger Martin said...


I'd agree, if you cannot excise liberalism from the CoE, or any church, then the answer is to vacate & meet with those like minded. Seems the ABC has been building bridges to the liberals in the US.

10 February 2014 at 16:52  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

John Thomas: ...Hamsters, well they're not sinful obviously ... I think ...

Don't kid yourself. Ask around...I'm sorry, I can't, I just can't cover this one...there are sources with stronger constitutions than mine on the 'Net, though.

10 February 2014 at 17:05  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


Oh no not the

"In Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile, slave nor free, male nor female.."

again. The key words are "In Christ". He wasn't talking about leadership.

If you are in Christ, you accept God has a different plan for your life than Germaine Greer. The women of WATCH seem incapable of seeing that distinction


10 February 2014 at 17:12  
Blogger IanCad said...

"So it's really all about women bishops, gay marriage, paedophiles and fashion?".

You can probably add music to that YG as well.

It cuts across all denominations.

"--Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." Revelation 18:4

We can do that or stay and fight.

Biblical teaching generally gives little succour to the majority view.

10 February 2014 at 17:18  
Blogger IanCad said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10 February 2014 at 17:19  
Blogger David Kavanagh said...

Hamsters are as good as the verminous rat, without the tail, so my kids don't and won't have them as pets. A rabbit, is a much more sophisticated and lovely creatures, along with labradors, fish, Macaws and cats.

10 February 2014 at 17:29  
Blogger David Kavanagh said...


I'm sure that there used to be an English law which said that because C of E Vicars were employed by God or Jesus, that they didn't have any employment rights... OK, I did read this in one of these 'interesting trivia' books a while back (well 10 years ago). Does anyone else know if this is still the case today?

10 February 2014 at 17:35  
Blogger David Kavanagh said...


I do like your new Avatar. What's the picture?

10 February 2014 at 17:38  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Anglican @ 15.56,

I very much agree with your paragraph one. If I was a betting man, which I am not, I'd say that in several decades only the Conservative Evangelicals and the Conservative Catholics will be knocking around.

10 February 2014 at 17:46  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

I say Archbishop, you’ve managed to portray synod as unmissable !

Do you know, they could do a lot worse than appoint you as their PR man. If you had sent your bill of fare to say Channel 4 in good time, they’d have been clamouring to put a TV crew in there. Anyway, it’s going to be a damn sight more interesting than the Winter Olympics, that’s for sure. One notes the games are going ahead despite the protestations of Big Gay – though one suspects the number of militant homosexuals who were all out to cancel them could be accommodated in a single disused AIDS ward. But tiny numbers notwithstanding, never, ever underestimate the blighters’ influence.

Which brings the Inspector to his main point - the veneration of the gay condition. Not in the gospel, of course, but let’s not allow that truth to wreck another years indulgence of the sexually orientated handicapped.

It is of course quite human to care for the handicapped and to have their best welfare in mind. We see the signs of handicap all the time. The wheelchair, the missing limb, the white stick. We do, however, seem to need those physical signs to empathise. When these are missing, we are rather lost on what to do, and that opens the door to all kinds of nonsense solutions by the truly concerned, as well as the modern image charlatan.

And thus we have ‘solutions’ that raise an eyebrow and are therefore not a true solution at all. Solutions that cause disquiet, division, animosity.

10 February 2014 at 17:59  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

It’s one of those ‘urban’ laws you know, like Murphys. Can’t quite remember this one’s name, but with such a learned bunch reading Cranmer, the answer will, hopefully, be forthcoming from one of you.

Here’s how it works. A motion is raised for discussion. It’s defeated. Instead of it being binned, it’s held over and re-introduced the following year. Sometimes in a different form, often not. It’s defeated again, but instead of it being binned, it’s held over, et cetera, et cetera. This goes on ad infinitum ad nauseam. The law states that sooner or later, though in practice its always later, the motion is carried, albeit heavily amended. There being limits on what flesh and blood can endure over time, as the Chinese torture of the dripping tap attests to.

That’s not the end of it though. The original motion is re-wrapped and resubmitted, rather like before. The aim this time is to mitigate the constraints on the passed motion.

You think you’d need to be a determined fanatic to see it through over the years, and you’d be right to a point. But here’s the horrible bit, a fanatic can leave, and have his place taken by a fresh fanatic. Same determination, same end goal, you see.

And thus you have it – a synod partly driven by fanaticism. Unfortunately, it’s not to fanatically spread the word of Christ to the British heathen. Which is an awkward ask anyway when divisiveness is so present.

Is the Inspector talking about gays, or women bishops ? Both, as it happens, as both have their fanatics, and both are pursuing to defy the natural order of how it was meant to be. That would be God’s order, of course. Not the latest thing, as we know, and highly unfashionable in the first few years of the twenty first century, for some reason best known to the fanatics.

10 February 2014 at 18:03  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Allow the Inspector to shine his light on to what Ged Robinson asks.



Fixated child abusers are overwhelmingly male. About a third of those who offend against children target boys, however non-incestuous offenders against male children have many more victims than offenders against female children. According to a study by Abel "the mean number of victims of non-incestuous offenders against female children was 19.8, which that of such offenders against male children was 150.2. (Abel 1988)


The numbers of victims per, shall we say ‘sexual orientation’ do seem rather high for both sexes. We must assume then that ‘fixated’ are what we would call ‘career’ abusers. We must also assume that although these numbers are high, a pattern is there, which we can scale down. It is though, incredibly difficult to obtain sexual abuse of children statistics via the World Wide Whatever, and that shouldn’t really be the case. As one has said before, it’s easier to establish the number of cornflakes in an average cereal bowl than to access real statistics on this crime.

We all know that when the truth hurts, it’s twisted and spun, but what of the truth when twisting and spinning just doesn’t cut it, the truth being far too stark. Easy - you hide the answer away. And if you can, you make it difficult to ask the question too. Make it un-PC to do so. There, that should do it…

Anyway, as for homosexuality in the male having correlation with paedophilia, why not ask some of those tabling motions at synod. See what they think…

10 February 2014 at 18:04  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Phil

Who on earth convinced you that Germaine Greer represents or represented many women. She never married or had children. And anyway the militant feminists are a bore and far away from those of us who just think that people should be allowed when called to exercise whatever ministry God calls them to. I have known the odd man who thought that after church, which his wife had also sat through, it was his task to explain to her what had been said, because, wait for it, she was a woman. Now she just happened to be somewhat brighter than him. But his interpretation of the Bible...Can you not see how fatuous that is ? No one should have their essence insulted in that way, now, should they?

I am not suggesting that women should be allowed to minister to be politically correct, but just where they have the skill set, the calling and are proven useful: sweet gentle common sense; no more.

10 February 2014 at 18:09  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

CoE types, if you want to bless flies as well as hamsters, it would be good form get Satan’s permission. He is their prince, and may vociferously object, which is something he won’t do with blessing gay couples, or appointing girl bishops...

10 February 2014 at 18:14  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10 February 2014 at 18:25  
Blogger carl jacobs said...


Since February 2007, when then Archbishop Rowan Williams torpedoed the Primates in order to save TEC, I have maintained that conservatives should seek to destabilize and ultimately dis-establish the Church of England. The orthodox believers who give the money must be severed from the corrupted hierarchy that lives off the money.

In short, there should be a massive "Starve Your Local Bishop" campaign. When the money runs out, the liberal religionists who have found for themselves a nice little sinecure for social activism will suddenly find themselves out of work. The whole infrastructure will collapse. The state will be separated from the church and freed from its "enlightening" dictates. The church can get on with what it is supposed to be doing.

Liberal religion is parasitic. It cannot fund itself. There aren't enough people out there who want a religion of doubt. Take away the money, and it will expire quite naturally. No lawyers. No discoveries. No courts. Just empty churches, and empty budgets, and angry liberal ex-priests who suddenly have to work for a living.


10 February 2014 at 18:28  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Goodness! Synod is going to debate clerical fashion? Well, my Lord the Bishop is one prelate who is sticking to his gaiters...mmm perhaps that's not quite what I meant

10 February 2014 at 18:50  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Lucy: "But do not think the RC church has not got its problems."

There are some surprising statistics in this:

From this article:

10 February 2014 at 19:04  
Blogger David Kavanagh said...


Re, the last paragraph, in that post. That is quite correct. In religions where the congregation has to fund their Vicar, Pastor, Rabbi etc, the liberal places tend to die a death. The C of E, by its 'national' nature keeps the liberal 'wing' afloat by the subsidy of the more 'orthodox' 'wing'. In Judaism the liberal trendies of Reform, Progressive and 'humanist' Judaism are being decimated, whilst it is the Orthodox/Conservative (& the 'ultra Orthodox') congregations which are flourishing. At least that is what is happening in the UK. I put it down to the fact that Orthodoxy requires commitment day to day, whereas liberal religion commits you to very little.

10 February 2014 at 19:16  
Blogger non mouse said...

Goddness, Your Grace. One might have been happy that this synod is to be held at "Home" - in the UK, rather than somewhere like Germany. But -- well, it's all shot through anyway with franco-german claptrap; so we can't win for losing.

10 February 2014 at 19:18  
Blogger non mouse said...

Err - upon re-reading with a larger font: that was meant to be "Goodness" --- as in the Old English "God," nevertheless.

10 February 2014 at 19:20  
Blogger Nick said...

I think that when someone came up woth the idea of women bishops they were taking the phrase "broad" church a bit too literally

Broadness in the church does not mean accomodating secular and atheistic orthodoxy for the sake of courting popularity and getting bums on seats. Such spiritual prostitution simply devalues the church and leaves it open to manipulation.

As to why the CofE has gone down the route of rainbow religion, where other churches have not, is an interesting question. The arguments of secularism can be very seductive to someone who has lost their way in life, whose faith is rooted among the weeds. The seduction of "reason" is often subtle yet pervasive as it appeals to our desire for a quick intellectual fix. It is a kind of spiritual laziness.

Sadly, many of the clergy have been swept onto the rocks by secularisms siren call. They are among the most pathetic and deceiving creatures around. No wonder Jesus himself held them in such great contempt

10 February 2014 at 20:13  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


" I have known the odd man who thought that after church, which his wife had also sat through, it was his task to explain to her what had been said, because, wait for it, she was a woman"

You don't think that possibly Paul did not realise that this was a difficult thing for a woman to accept?

So why did he do say it? Was it about keeping women in their "place"? Unlikely in my view, considering the rest of his letters. We should look for some other reason for him writing it.

Even if it does mean exactly what he says. Is that really such a big deal? Or do we now know better than Paul. Step aside mate the rest of your teaching is OK but on this bit, we now know better.

Paul's only aim remember, was to help people achieve salvation. Everything else was secondary to him.


10 February 2014 at 20:13  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


"Since February 2007, when then Archbishop Rowan Williams torpedoed the Primates in order to save TEC, I have maintained that conservatives should seek to destabilize and ultimately dis-establish the Church of England. The orthodox believers who give the money must be severed from the corrupted hierarchy that lives off the money. "

Doesn't work Carl.

Come to Wales. See hundred of "orthodox" Chapels now lying empty or turned into houses etc

You see it worked for a while. Then the Chapels fell out with each other over smaller and smaller aspects of the Bible

In the end they were as bad as the liberals who take things away from the Bible. They added to the Bible which is just as bad

Splitting away to form your own club of "mates" does not work because what happens when you stop being friends? Fall out again....find new friends? and again....?

The life of Brian got this exactly right " The people's front of Judea"

Google it, it will be on U tube


10 February 2014 at 20:29  
Blogger Integrity said...

Ged Robinson said...15:37
Aren't the majority of child sex offenders heterosexual?

Since homosexuals count for around only 3% of the population, this would indicate that if more than 3% of child sex offenders are gay, then there is a greater propensity amongst gays.

10 February 2014 at 20:32  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

One sees you have had a manly breakfast, Inspector, and after this energetic, top-notch commentary, you deserve a pint on the house. Don't misconstrue lack of responses as indifference, Sir. Some of us may be in shock and are waiting for the saline solution to take effect, but most of us regulars here hide a grin, waiting to see if some new lurker will come out of the shadows to spout, "But, but you can't say that in 2014! There must be a law against that!!!" With me, I have to confess, my grin begins to spread the moment I see your monochrome avatar.

Well, folks, if we don't cheer the Inspector now and again, put an olive branch wreath on his oiled curls and parade him under the Cranmer Arch, others will take our silence as disapproval and pretty soon there will be a law against what he has to say. Now of you some think that, well, he is rude and (gasp!) tasteless at times, so ot would make sense to make him more civil. Ok, and then ten minutes later they'll look at what His Grace has to say and find it wanting and then what we have to say.

So, whether we like or not like, let's have three cheers for our inimitable Inspector and his highly readable commentary!

10 February 2014 at 20:59  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Carl, in addition to what Phil said, the Churches have gazoodles in assets, fungible or as property and can self-support for centuries on dividends alone, if they tighten the belts a little.

10 February 2014 at 21:06  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


"Anyway, as for homosexuality in the male having correlation with paedophilia, why not ask some of those tabling motions at synod. See what they think…"

The link with male homosexuality and pedophilia is increasingly accepted outside of the homosexual community. There was a study done on convicted pedophiles in prison. They were asked to self identify if they were homosexual or not. The results were around 25%

Since this is many times higher than the homosexual population it correlates to pedophilia being around 20 to 40 times more prevalent in homosexuals than heterosexuals.


DanJo usually vigorously disputes this without actually giving any hard evidence to the contrary

Wait for it....!

10 February 2014 at 21:12  
Blogger Thomas Keningley said...

I've just been preparing a Bible study on 1 Corinthians 5, and am struck by the obvious relevance to much of the discussion here. The church is publicly shamed by the tolerance of immorality within her, and unless we expel the evildoers we invite collective judgement a la Deuteronomy. Heresy is, of course, immoral.

10 February 2014 at 21:16  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Happy Jack says, given the way of the world, people will always want to take the easy, popular route. And, of course, Satan takes advantage of this.

Jack says all the churches wanting to remain Apostolic and Catholic and maintain orthodox, traditional structures, morality and teachings are under attack and have been since the 1960's. And, unfortunately, this places the gender of bishops centre - stage and sexual morality too.

Proclaiming the Christian faith afresh in each generation does not mean accepting the spirit and wishes of each generation but working out how to evangelise to it and save people.

10 February 2014 at 21:46  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


So think on this one for your Bible Study.....!

What is your motivation for doing good? Is it fear of judgement? Then good riddance to your motivation Thomas

If your motivation for doing good is fear then you do not understand God at all.

God loves you and if he only loved you when you were doing good things then this would not be love at all.

Our motivation for living a Godly life is the love of God not fear of punishment.


10 February 2014 at 21:55  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


Just to clarify.

If we are saved by following God's rules then we do not need Christ.

If you think that if you follow God's rules then you will have a life free of problems then unfortunately Jesus told us the exact opposite.

We are not justified by how we behave. We do not follow God's commandments because of our fear of God, but because of our love of God.


10 February 2014 at 22:11  
Blogger Martin said...


My experience of independent churches is that they do not have "gazoodles in assets". One church I was a member of, while it had large income from offerings, was very generous in its giving. Most do not have the same level of giving but are still generous with what they have.

10 February 2014 at 22:17  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Phil
Paul didn't make up magic rules, they talked about what worked. For the majority of uneducated women at the time that was what worked, just as the covered hair bit worked because to have uncovered hair was the sign of a prostitute. The Church has always made a distinction between what was written because it was appropriate for the Church at the time and what is universal. Had a blue tie with red spots on been the sign of a gigolo at the time you would find men advised not to wear them.

This does not mean that a present day man should patronise his wife by re-explaining to her something she may have grasped better than him first time round, which is called a shameful and patronising waste of time.

We are not called upon to go backwards but forwards! It is obvious to the massively vast majority. Or do you insist on all women wearing hats?

10 February 2014 at 22:24  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear Avi, you are absolutely right! The Inspector is an absolute treasure and should soon be recognised as a national treasure. I must say Synod seems to get sillier and sillier - I am reminded of the old adage 'turkeys voting for Christmas' by which I mean pursuing pet 'isms' which quite frankly put ordinary folk off completely. They might well wake up one day to find their pews empty...oh, wait a minute...

10 February 2014 at 22:28  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Lucy dear heart, hats are an essential. I never leave The Palace without a poke...

10 February 2014 at 22:30  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Avi, Mrs Proudie, you both serve a fellow well {AHEM}

But this fellow rejoices in silence when he posts. You see, he’s been fighting degeneration now for four decades. In other theatres, he has been ridiculed. Here, he is not. He has come home, no less...

10 February 2014 at 22:37  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Phil: "DanJo usually vigorously disputes this without actually giving any hard evidence to the contrary Wait for it....!"

That's ironic given that you haven't done so yourself up there, and I've posted a link to a survey on another point. In fact, I often post links to surveys and statistics. Most of your stuff seems to come from the infamous Family Research Council anyway, which is hardly worth the effort of trashing again here.

10 February 2014 at 22:40  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear DanJ0, I hope you are keeping warm during these cold and wet February days. If you would like the use of my muff you only have to say.

10 February 2014 at 22:47  
Blogger Roy said...

Blogger Phil Roberts said...

What is your motivation for doing good? Is it fear of judgement? Then good riddance to your motivation Thomas

If your motivation for doing good is fear then you do not understand God at all.

The Apostle John expressed this more concisely in his first epistle.

We love him, because he first loved us.

1 John 4 v. 19.

10 February 2014 at 22:54  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Mrs P: "Dear DanJ0, I hope you are keeping warm during these cold and wet February days. If you would like the use of my muff you only have to say."

I wouldn't know what to do with it, Mrs P. Besides, I expect it might interfere with my holding some hot buns, which I've grown quite partial to these days.

10 February 2014 at 23:01  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Hi Martin, I didn't mean individual parish churches, but Churches, the organizations. Was thinking of the liberal ones, the Episcopalian Church in the US or our United Church here in Canada. Totally left wing, empty pews with a few confused old people going in, rock bands and dances for the yoots, billions in assets. Enough to keep their collection of activist types in "social justice careers," getting into everything in the World but religion.

I'm all for the national treasure status for the Inspector too, Mrs Proudie. Protected status, I say, a Royal Reserve to be made of his place of habitation. Scattered feeding (curry) and watering ("beering"?) stations, along his daily route. Of course, a reserved spot at his Mouse and Wheel. I volunteer to be his keeper who provides him with the special essentials like scotch, which of course has to be selected very carefully, as the Inspector is a fragile life form. Not every one is up to that; I am. May I assign you as his breeding director? We can't let his line go to waste. Surely you can line up a crowd of eager volunteers who have the future of England and humankind foremost in their hearts and bosoms.

10 February 2014 at 23:25  
Blogger carl jacobs said...


the Churches have gazoodles in assets, fungible or as property and can self-support for centuries on dividends alone, if they tighten the belts a little.

If this was true, the CoE would not have had to go hat in hand to the Americans when Lambeth 2008 needed an extra $2 million to break even. And Jeffrey John (homosexual, heretic)would not have been blocked from being appointed a bishop by conservative churches that threatened to bankrupt the Diocese inside six moths if he was appointed.

TEC had boatloads of dead men's money. It has sustained them for years. It is what allowed TEC to ignore its own laity and proceed with liberalization. But the money is starting to run out. And within the next 10-20 years, TEC is literally going to implode. Money gets burned up fast when it's being used to sustain church functionaries in their well-paid jobs.


10 February 2014 at 23:42  
Blogger carl jacobs said...


I am not talking about separation from brothers. I am talking aboyut separation from false brothers who teach a false gospel and have no place in the church. In any case, I would not stay in a church that would even consider Jeffrey John to be a viable candidate for bishop, and I certainly wouldn't give it money.


10 February 2014 at 23:44  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Hm. You know more about the TEC that I do then, Carl. I figured most are like universities, living off interest from trust funds and rents, "running out of money" in a manner of speaking. So, it's more like "eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die" then? Vikings on a binge? They can get up to quite a bit of mischief that way.

10 February 2014 at 23:49  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Happy Jack found this an interesting comment:

"The word "Catholic" is often understood in opposition to the word "Protestant." However, this is both a recent and uniquely western perspective.

In the ancient church, catholicism was understood to be the opposite of heresy, or false belief, and even today there are millions of Christians in Greece, Russia, and other parts of the world who consider themselves neither "Catholic" nor "Protestant," but "Orthodox."

During the sixteenth century, the Church of England sought to modify certain beliefs and practices that had developed over the centuries and appeared extraneous, unwise, or divergant from apostolic faith and practice. In doing so, the church did not abandon its catholicism; rather it engaged in a process of reform."


Jack appreciates and understands this form of Anglicanism.

Jack observes that what the modernist, liberal, "progressives" are doing in all churches who see themselves as orthodox and apostolic is taking advantage of the theological and evangelical challenges facing the West since the 1960's in an increasingly atheist and secular age that is hostile to the Gospel.

This is their message:

Christians believe in the love and mercy of God. The church is stronger when love one another, accept one another and don't judge because we are all sinners.

We don’t support women bishops, liturgical reform, abortion, homosexual marriage in spite of being Christians. We support women bishops, reform of liturgy, abortion, and homosexual marriage because we are Christians.”

Jack asks if this sounds familiar?

11 February 2014 at 00:26  
Blogger Harry-ca-Nab said...

So, no discussion or action on the persecution and genocide against Christians across the Muslim world..

Sexuality, gender, fashion

As I always thought - the CofE is all about frocks.

11 February 2014 at 07:11  
Blogger Harry-ca-Nab said...

Given the analysis of the main offenders in the Catholic Church abuse scandals I would have thought that the CofE would want fewer, not more, gays in its ranks.

11 February 2014 at 07:15  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

I'm grateful for the Pilling report giving me the nudge I needed to quit the CofE for a Bible centred church. I'm settling in very well and wish I'd made the change earlier.

Will be watching the synod with interest.

11 February 2014 at 08:08  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear Avi, I shall nip to the library and borrow my Lord's stud book immediately...

11 February 2014 at 09:03  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Thanks David K, at 17.38.

It's The Annunciation, by Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

11 February 2014 at 09:19  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Avi and Mrs Proudie make a very good point in relation to the redoubtable Inspector, who is indeed at home on this blog.

Likewise, the sight of the monochrome moustache and the often hilarious and excoriating prose that comes with it is one of the many things that keep me interested.

Hats off to you sir…

11 February 2014 at 09:35  
Blogger Len said...

The main problem here seems to be failing to differentiate between 'the Church' and the 'Body of Christ'.

When the Church is married to the state that state will corrupt the Church.We see this happening with Constantine when He paganised Christianity by turning it into the State religion
Many people who might get saved see the church and turn their backs on it because they see it filled with hypocrisy and corruption .

'The Body of Christ' exists outside of the Church but strangely inside the church as well.Not because of the Church but despite it.
The ongoing corruption of the church will cause some difficult decisions for those who cling to the church much as someone refusing to get into the lifeboat when the Titanic was sinking.Some people drowned ON the Titanic because they refused to leave.Others died because the could not see the direction the Titanic was heading and should never have boarded her.

Perhaps that is the reason God says

Then I heard another voice from heaven say: "'Come out of her, my people,' so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues;(Revelation 18:4)

11 February 2014 at 10:30  
Blogger Martin said...


Churches are the individual congregations. That is the default structure in the New Testament. What you are speaking of is a denomination, an unwieldy conglomeration of individual churches that to a greater or lesser extent try to boss the local churches around.

Of course the meeting of the synod of the church of England is a good time to invite its Christian members to come out and join us in independence.

11 February 2014 at 12:24  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Martin, I imagine "joining in independence" is a tricky thing not only linguistically, but practically as well. The trend in Christianity has been towards larger and more centralized governing bodies because of its history. It owes its origins to the inherited infrastructures of Imperial Rome and later, to the nation state and wherever this centralization did not take root, Christianity in the Near East. The Gospel church model, I'm guessing, is the Diaspora synagogue. But that system may only work for a minority without an economic and political centre. Just juggling ideas, trying to see where there are similarities between Jewish and Christian communities as they face the massive onslaught of secularism...for now, until they have to deal with Islam.

11 February 2014 at 14:38  
Blogger Busy Mum said...

I think it all comes down to the beginning - male and female created He them - and women were created to be a helpmeet for men. It is this role of helping and supporting men in their difficult tasks (including preaching) that women seem to resent. Until I see women proactively campaigning for a 50% quota system for employing female dustmen (waste disposal operatives or whatever they are called nowadays) I will refuse to believe the women's rights movement is anything but rebellion against God's role-casting.

I was unaware that uncovered hair indicated a prostitute but I interpret Paul's epistle to the Corinthians as meaning women were given their hair for their glory and it is this glory that must remain covered during worship. Apart from hats (which females do wear at our little chapel), I presume this is why married women in certain sects keep their hair tied back - the only person allowed to see their glory is the husband. Thinking as I write, maybe that's why uncovered hair was linked with prostitution - letting one's glory be seen by anyone...
Hats, sexual behaviour, women vicars - it's all the same pattern; what was mainstream and normal and correct 60-odd years ago is now strange, old-fashioned, prudish and, well, unheard of. The speed with which centuries of tradition and behaviour has been overturned - within a generation or two - must be part of that great 'falling away'.

11 February 2014 at 14:44  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Len @ 10:30 “The ongoing corruption of the church will cause some difficult decisions for those who cling to the church much as someone refusing to get into the lifeboat when the Titanic was sinking.Some people drowned ON the Titanic because they refused to leave.Others died because the could not see the direction the Titanic was heading and should never have boarded her.”

What in God’s name was THAT all about, if not the insane ramblings of an imbecile driven to inanity through continuous and rabid Saul-like condemnation of the embodiment of Christ’s continuing mission on this earth ???

The Titanic was bound for New York, you damned fool, THAT is why people boarded her. “Refusing” to get into lifeboats was in reality “unable” and those souls who stayed aboard did so because all the bloody boats had been launched !!!

11 February 2014 at 17:31  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Busy mum, inspired by your post at 14:44 this man asks if you recall some weeks ago now, the Y chromosome being in the news. It is apparently tiny in comparison with the X. This, suggests the loon who wrote the article, could mean that one day the Y chromosome could be done away with ! Now, that would be a very attractive proposition for the gender deniers, almost all homosexuals to a man.

Yet that meagre Y is responsible for so much. The construction industry for starters. There is not a brick building in Christendom that wasn’t put up entirely by holders of that Y, save for a few ‘odd’ lady bricklayers, carpenters, plumbers and electricians, each of whom no doubt look better in dungarees than a dress.

One can imagine a future where members of an entirely XX human race cowers in the ruins of buildings rearing XX children who might as well be sterile, waiting for one of the pitifully scarce rather deep voiced women maintenance teams to patch the place up, of sorts.

11 February 2014 at 17:32  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


"just as the covered hair bit worked because to have uncovered hair was the sign of a prostitute"

I don't think that that is it. When I first saw my wife she was in front of me in Church and all I could see was fantastic long hair.

The next time she wore a hat but I still took absolutely no notice of anything that was said or what anybody else was doing.

Men cannot concentrate on worship if there are beautiful women to look at. That I believe is the reason for covering the hair. (It helps a bit)


11 February 2014 at 18:07  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Phil

But women can concentrate if there is a beautiful man to look at can they? And in some churches a good looking man with a guitar looking cool? It is no less a temptation. All some women would need would be Colin Firth asking for baptism by total immersion in one of those regency shirts and you would get a packed- but not wholly heavenly minded-church of misty-eyed ladies!!

Not flaunting beauty is one thing but actively seeking to hide it is not the Christian path for we would neither wish to over stress outer beauty in relation to inner beauty nor stress outer imposition (veils and so on) at the expense of inner self control and the awareness that we "should not get entangled in civilian pursuits" nor want to be at the expense of mission and discipleship, because they should matter to us too much.

So forget the hats, either way, down on your knees, eyes closed, and pray- hard. Mrs Proudie and the IG in O will be there with implements in hand to check that you do not open your eyes!

11 February 2014 at 18:26  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Busy Mum
I am Evangelical, faintly charismatic but definitely not fundamentalist. There are TWO creation stories that are mutually INCOMPATIBLE, and they do indisputably crop us elsewhere. Now I am not disrespecting the stories; there probably was one man and woman who started off the human race, but no one was there to witness it were they? And I am not sufficiently far gone to think two mutually incompatible stories are correct in all minute details, but then no allegorical telling of a story does touch at every point, and in that type of literature it is not supposed to. It is essential to subdivide Scripture into different types of literature and then to read them within the construct of the type of literature which they are , and not within another type of literature which they are not. For it is only when we do such that we get a fair reading.

I am happy to see Scripture as infallible, in the original language, without later additions, taking social context into account, and when read in context with all other Scripture, and within the appropriate literary genre. We may make the odd mistake doing this, but cannot go way off course!

To suggest a woman's chief glory is in her hair is I think a great misreading of Scripture- and incidentally (and a little frivolously) very cruel to cancer patients. It certainly feels like real bathos to me, and it is not how we live our lives, is it?

Even lists of what men find most attractive about women do not put hair first; the only people who tend to mention it are those who have just read that passage of St Paul in a poor translation.

11 February 2014 at 18:52  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Lucy. A women’s chief glory is indeed, not her hair, but Busy mum is in the right area...


11 February 2014 at 19:13  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@IG in O

Naughty, naughty. But you will be interested in this man's interpretation, which truly makes good contextual sense, inasmuch as the whole lot is about hair length and the inappropriateness of transgender appearance, thus no crewcuts or completely shaven heads on women, nor attempts at female long hair (as apart from Nazirite vows long hair) on men. No doubt women were not encouraged to have tattoos like a sailor either.

Never mind, man, Mrs Proudie is on the prowl in the backstreets of Gloucester and Cheltenham on Avi's mission to find a suitable breeding filly for you!

And here, if His Grace allows is the link that shines light on this vexed question:

11 February 2014 at 19:34  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Inspector, Agreed, "A women’s chief glory is indeed, not her hair, but Busy mum is in the right area...".

Jack finds a woman's eyes her most endearing feature. It puzzles him why Muslims go to all that trouble covering up a woman only to accentuate these.

Lucy, Jesus could not be accused of avoiding controversial social relationship issues in His time on earth. Why then do you suppose He chose only men as his Apostles? And why was God referred to in terms of Fatherhood and Jesus, the Second Person came as His Son? It seems to Jack that our Creator had a plan in mind for the complementarity of men and women.

11 February 2014 at 22:46  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Happy Jack

Agree wholeheartedly that Jesus did not avoid controversial social relationships. Not least with women.

Not sure apostleship, rather a blurry concept, is relevant. But then I believe in all member ministry. Having encountered women preaching for decades it has no shock value whatever, and having encountered women handing me the wine for 3 or 4 decades and the bread for 2 I really cannot see any sensible problem at all. And as for pastoral ministry that has gone on for centuries. Of course Mary Magdalene was probably at the last Supper, and several of the other women, and they probably handed the bread and wine round then too.

The church has been a neurotic institution at times though at least the Church of England was at the forefront of opening up decent education for women, even if some have put stumbling blocks to following up on that. As a beneficiary of two schools which were frontiers of educational opportunity and a College at University that was so also you would not expect me to say that women should be precluded from contribution to the Church beyond tea-making, washing up, and laundry.

12 February 2014 at 02:28  
Blogger Mike Stallard said...

Love the sarcasm - well written!

12 February 2014 at 07:38  
Blogger IanCad said...

Happy Jack wrote:

"Jack finds a woman's eyes her most endearing feature. It puzzles him why Muslims go to all that trouble covering up a woman only to accentuate these."

Darn it Jack! I been on a hunt for an essay by William Golding on exactly that point.
Wasted two hours so far. It's around here somewhere - or did I give it away?
"Nile journey," about halfway in.

12 February 2014 at 08:55  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Lucy, Happy Jack agrees women are underestimated by many men and should play a greater part in the church. However, from scripture, there is no reference to women being at the Last Supper participating in the meal or having their feet washed. Maybe they were there serving - who knows and there isn't any tradition about this that Jack is aware of. And yet it was women who first saw the risen Christ and informed the cowering men. At Pentecost the tongues of fire came to the men too.

Jack thinks it depends on how the Apostles' jobs are viewed nowadays and how their ministry was passed on. It also depends on how one sees the priesthood. The Anglican Community is divided on this, as you know. Jack has heard many fine talks by women vicars that he has found inspirational - but becoming bishops and successors of Peter and the other Apostles? Jack is unconvinced.

IanCad, this is what Audrey Hepburn once said:
"The beauty of a woman must be seen from in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides."

And Jim Carrey rather let the side down with this:
"Behind every great man is a woman rolling her eyes."

Good luck with your search and do share the quote when you find the book.

12 February 2014 at 10:11  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Happy Jack

Of course there is Mary Magdalene's account. I am sitting on the fence on that as I think if I remember aright that there are gnostic elements in it and I am no fan of that at all. However there is very good evidence that women were written out of the story and therefore there are only men mentioned at the Last Supper because there were only men there. Women tend to turn up when there is no story without them. But I doubt that the men would have prepared their own meal for a start. Somehow I find it only too believable that there was competition between Peter and Mary Magdalene given the other recorded squabbles between the disciples!!

Again there are differences between understandings of Apostleship; on one extreme are those who think it is once and for all as a description; on the other those Black Pentecostal churches where it seems as if a minister who is not a Bishop, Prophet or Apostle is decidedly inferior!! I think I maybe somewhere in the middle!

12 February 2014 at 11:07  
Blogger David Kavanagh said...

Well I was quite pleased with working out what a 'TEC' was, which I presume to mean 'The English Church'... Americans with their abbreviations!

12 February 2014 at 12:25  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear Lucy, I would strongly advise against sitting on the fence without plenty of horsehair in your could prove rather nasty, especially if it is a picket. Speaking of which, the Barchester Christian Union under the admirable Bunce have donned wellingtons and sou'westers and paddled up to the Somerset Levels, where I believe they have formed a cordon sanitaire around Lord Smith's post-chaise whilst singing three rousing choruses of 'Water of Life.' I do find life somewhat bizarre. As for the search for a Mrs Inspector in Ordinary, there are several ladies in Cranford who are feverishly looking. I could have a word with Miss Matty...

12 February 2014 at 13:21  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Mrs Proudie

And did they follow with "River, wash over me", or was that one they sang earlier?

I don't run to a horsehair bustle. How would that do in a flood? But sitting on the fence is a very Anglican pursuit. Having tough posteriors we can sit there for donkeys' years and far beyond the time when interest has completely run out! A rousing rendition of "The Vicar of Bray" would illustrate our robust and principled indecisions!

12 February 2014 at 19:47  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Mrs Proudie

Glad to hear the search for a suitable match for the IG in O is in process. I hope you remembered to advise the ladies that the Inspector has a hatred for tattoos, so a discreet full body search may be required; we don't want any nasty surprises!!

12 February 2014 at 19:53  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

David: "Well I was quite pleased with working out what a 'TEC' was, which I presume to mean 'The English Church'... Americans with their abbreviations!"

Episcopalian? Part of the Anglican Communion?

13 February 2014 at 05:00  
Blogger Busy Mum said...

@ Lucy Mullen,
I too am a beneficiary of a school which was a - I believe, the - leader in women's education. Disagreeing with women vicars does not mean I think women are only capable of washing up, tea making and laundry.
I think the point we both appreciate is that you are free to worship without wearing a hat and you are free to be ministered to by a woman. Conversely, I am free to wear a hat and attend a place of worship where all females wear hats and know that a woman will not enter the pulpit. Also, we are both free to disagree on these issues and neither can force the other to conform....

13 February 2014 at 13:19  
Blogger Busy Mum said...

Inspector General
Yes, I do recall that little news item and I enjoyed your logical conclusions. Among these wonderful XX specimens there had better be some super farmers/breeders who make sure a few XY's are born every now and again so that some Y's can be harvested, frozen and stored to ensure the continuation of the race of XX's.....once the necessary byproduct has been harvested the XY's can be caged together or disposed of straight away. That would save the XX's working out how to make cages...and of course no matter if XX's are not strong enough to dig holes in the ground because Christian burials would be a thing of the past.

13 February 2014 at 13:30  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

One is thinking of Huxley here, Busy mum. By the time it happens, woman would be spared the agonies of vociferous childbirth – the foetuses would be brought to majority in the laboratory.

But much to the authorities disgust, there are still a few XY types around, on the quiet, and XX maidens wanting to meet them with thoughts in mind for what nature once decreed for humanity. God bless the young, and their continuing questioning of what is...

13 February 2014 at 19:33  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Postscript. A laboratory manufactured XX maiden would probably look something like Peter Tatchell. Those XY survivors better be made of stern stuff, what !

13 February 2014 at 20:12  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


sorry I have been travelling so no time to reply

Women can do all of these "jobs" in the church such as vicar and Bishop etc

The reason that they should not do them is not because they can but because of the implications for men

Also evidence that the church wrote the women out of the last supper?


14 February 2014 at 09:36  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

It is interesting perhaps that leaving the earth means the end of men

most fighter pilots have female children and any trip to Mars would Mean that any children that survive would be female


14 February 2014 at 09:46  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...


sorry I have been travelling so no time to reply

Women can do all of these "jobs" in the church such as vicar and Bishop etc

The reason that they should not do them is not because they can but because of the implications for men

Also evidence that the church wrote the women out of the last supper?


14 February 2014 at 09:47  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older