Tit for Tat Anglicans

I think perhaps as I and many others expected, the cracks are starting to show again across the Church of England as a result of the primates meeting.

As you may be aware, a group of English Bishops wrote a letter to the Times that basically said that they weren’t out of communion with anybody. Of course Anglican Mainstream have responded with a return letter, as yet unpublished, following a careful reading and analysis of the words used. In addition, Anglican Mainstream supporting clergy have announced they are out of communion with their Bishop due to him having signed the letter. At this rate we’re going to need some sort of flow diagram showing who is in communion and out of communion with everybody else! It is worth noting that again these clergy are remaining within the Church of England. As I have heard noted about the Traditional Anglican Communion by a member of one of their churches, it often comes down to money. The friend of ours who is a member of one such church called one of their clergy a hypocrite because although they were sympathetic to the beliefs of the TAC, they waited until they had retired before changing, so the Anglican Church was paying them a full pension whilst they worked for the TAC.

It strikes me that similar things are going on here, I would expect that very few clergy will actually leave the Church on principle, and blow their pensions – on either side. Much the same happened back with the Bishop of Reading fiasco, the Churches who objected weren’t proposing to leave, just stop paying their quota whilst still being paid by the Church, and using their buildings. To be honest I don’t blame them, however, as no side will go, we will continue to get these pot-shots and tit for tat in the press, which is getting steadily more and more tedious – have a read of the discussion over this posting on Thinking Anglicans! Into all of this a Church of Ireland priest has published a book which is sure to stir things up even more: The Right True End of Love: Sexuality and the Contemporary Church.

As I mentioned previously the really important parts are getting lost in arguments about doctrine and theology. Getting lost in the middle are real people who are affected by the Churches attitude, some of whom who have been excluded, others who have been accepted by their Church communities, but now will start to feel that they don’t belong. Whilst I find there is an almost obstinate fascination in seeing what will happen next, there is also the depressing realisation that the longer it goes on, the more irrelevant and pointless the Church will seem to the secular community as a whole, and the more damage the Church will do to itself.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.