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Thursday, 14 May 2015

Church in Wales to embrace polygamy next?

"A man with two boyfriends had asked where the [Green] party stood on polyamory" - Independent

One of the more alarming claims I heard in the run-up to the 2015 General Election was that the Green party was open to the possibility of three in a marriage. Not as Princess Diana described it but legally, adding the seal of approval to polygamy. 

From the Independent, 1 May 2015: 
"Natalie Bennett has said her party is 'open to consultation' on the possibility of legalising polygamy and civil partnerships involving three or more people. The Green Party leader was responding to a question from a man living with his two boyfriends in a polyamorous relationship in London on Friday.

Dr Redfern Jon Barrett, taking part in an event organised by Pink News, said people like himself in three-way relationships faced a 'considerable amount of legal discrimination'. He asked: 'As someone living with his two boyfriends in a stable long-term relationship, I would like to know your stance is on polyamory rights. Is there room for Green support on group civil partnerships or marriages?'

Ms Bennett replied that although the Green Party 'at present' has no specific policy on legal partnerships involving more than two people, members could develop one and vote for it to be introduced. 'We have led the way on many issues related to the liberalisation of legal status in adult consenting relationships, and we are open to further conversation and consultation on this issue,' she added."

Politically the Green Party may have led the way on many issues related to the 'liberalisation of legal status in adult consenting relationships' but in the Church the champion of liberalisation in Great Britain is the Archbishop of Wales. I have been unable to find an official report of the proceedings but Dr Morgan secured an overwhelming vote in favour of his same-sex marriage proposals at the extraordinary meeting of the Llandaff Diocesan Conference held in Aberdare on May 9 to discuss the matter.

Not that it has any more relevance than voting at Parish and Deanery level because the Bench of Bishops have endorsed ++Barry's decision that they alone will decide the issue after the measure has been massaged through the Governing Body, just as they did when they denied traditional Anglicans a meaningful Code of Practice, contrary to the wishes expressed at Diocesan conferences organised at considerable expense to obtain the views of Church in Wales members.

After same-sex marriage polygamy is the next logical step for people in stable, long-term polyamorous relationships who love one another. If same-sex marriage is acceptable what possible objection can there be if two or more people love each other? Justifying their legislation Government Ministers said: "Put simply, it's not right that a couple who love each other and want to formalise a commitment to each other should be denied the right to marry."

Supporters of same-sex marriage who want the Church to be involved use 'love' as justification because love is at the heart of Christianity. It is. Christ said, "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another", which raises the question whether the Bench understands the meaning of true discipleship.

What can the Bench of Bishops be thinking about to go along with this misguided secular campaign? The price being paid is in direct opposition to Christ's prayer that we all may be one. As a result of ++Barry's misguided political policies, ecumenism between the Catholic and the Anglican Churches may be ending:
"Questions are being raised about whether the ecumenism between the Catholic and Anglican churches is coming to an end. According to Crux, many ask is there any point in the ecumenism as female bishops and gay bishops are present in Anglican churches, and they are now well-along the path toward same-sex marriage." Report here.

'Plural marriage' is currently out of favour in Mormonism but eager bed-fellows will be found in Islam. So the Archbishop of Wales will retire in the knowledge that in terms of marriage the Church in Wales could have more in common with Islam than with the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church of which he claims membership. What a legacy!


  1. For those who do want reunion with Holy See they should read the following May edition page 7

    Wake up calls. So close yet so far!

    Joseph Golightly

    1. It's no different in the Ordinariate:

  2. The size of the Green Party (65,000) is more than double His Darkness’ Church in Wales (now less than 30,000). Working from His Darkness’ usual policy of jumping on the next rolling band waggon, it seems to make sense for him to promote polygamy as an adjunct to his redefinition of the sacrament of marriage. Let’s face it, once the traditional model has been destroyed anything is up for grabs.

  3. This is not about 'love' in a polygamous relationship .

    In our society nowadays ,I am told by the younger generation that having sex is a recreational activity, which pastime has little (or nothing) to do with love. Hence the possible fanciful fashion for multiple sexual partners and thus the fashionable interest in polygamy, which route is open to both men and women in western culture by virtue of the equality issue.
    In Islam woman has a much different place in society and within a marriage,for although Islamic man may have several partners or several wives, a woman is not permitted to have more than one husband.
    ++Barry seems to promote a 'discipline-free' form of religion, in his plan to form the new Protestant Church of Wales which will not have any hope of claiming to be part of The Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. He may claim this position ,but it is a falsehood and a deception.

    1. We all know that polygamy is extant in the Muslim community - they simply don't bother with secular oversight but carry on within the community context.
      I always thought that "homosexual" referred to sexual attraction, not love. For government ministers or CiW bishops to refer to love in a gay marriage context is therefore mis-leading.
      I love my sister and my Mum, but I don't want to marry them any more than my brother, whom I also love. In response to a recent questionnaire "are you attracted sexually to men or women or both" I responded "none of the above - I am happily married (to a woman!)"


  4. Homosexuality predates Christianity and is certainly recorded in Ancient Greece.

    I cannot agree with the inference that all same- sex attraction is depraved and immoral and I do not agree that the 'goal' in all same-sex relationships is solely or primarily sexual satisfaction : I have no doubt there are genuine loving relationships within same sex partnerships.
    There will be a 'recreational element' in some same-sex involvement ,just as exists by virtue of the culture of today ,in heterosexual 'loose' friendships. It would be naive to think that there are not debased activities present and practiced in heterosexual relationships and this is not excluding marriages.
    Same sex attraction is not totally understood and it is wrong the sweep everyone in this category with the same brush.

    1. Homosexual sexual activity was characteristic of the pagan nations surrounding Israel, and was one of the reasons why the people of Israel were constantly urged to remain a holy people, set apart from their neighbours. In decadent Greek and Roman society many rich men had catamites. It is precisely this against which St Paul warns so firmly in Romans 1:

      18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honour him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.

      24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonouring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever! Amen.

      26 For this reason God gave them up to dishonourable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; 27 and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.

      It appears that Romans 1 has been bowdlerised from the edition of the bible consulted by many church leaders, particularly among the Church in Wales leadership.

  5. Llandaff Pelican15 May 2015 at 08:11

    Given that Polygamy is still practiced by some Anglicans in the fundamentalist province of Nigeria (a fact openly admitted by the new Secretary General of the ACC) Wales would hardly be breaking new ground! Similarly, remove all the gay clergy in the Diocese of Llandaff at a stroke and there would be no priestly leadership in some of the most socially unpromising communities in South Wales. As the late Cardinal Hume memorably reminded some Catholic purists a year before his untimely death, 'You cannot avoid the evidence: God seems to have a habit of calling gay people to serve as priests.'

    1. What would Jesus say?15 May 2015 at 13:11

      How would anyone know that God truly calls any gay people to serve as priests any more than one might know if God truly calls heterosexual people to serve as priests?

      Is it not every bit as possible they chose to join male only vacations/communities that would put them into a position of trust and regular contact with choir boys, altar boys, servers, acolytes, monks, friars and other men in Holy orders for entirely their own personal reasons?

      It was a bit rich him for Basil Hume to proclaim "You cannot avoid the evidence".
      The Roman Catholic Church in the USA, Ireland and elsewhere has deliberately chosen to "avoid the evidence" of systematic physical and sexual abuse (heterosexual and homosexual) perpetrated by priests and nuns on children and adults alike over many decades.

      The vast majority of the CinW clergy toady, pander, scrape and bow to Barry Morgan's secular liberal anything goes dictats so there's precious little genuine "priestly leadership" to be found in south Wales regardless.
      How long will it be before Barry has Diocesan conferences discussing proposals to support the lifestyle choices and demands of a societal minority to marry their horses, dogs, goats, sheep or goldfish?

    2. @WwJs
      Your point about the Roman Catholic church is well made and that organisation is by no means the only one to have put saving "face" or their reputation before the welfare of vulnerable people and the victims of their associates.

    3. I think 'What would Jesus say' may describe the clergy in Llandaf but I don't support that view of the whole of the clergy in South Wales. In fact in one diocese they are vociferously against ++Barry's liberal ways.

    4. What would Jesus say?20 May 2015 at 20:33

      Kindly note.
      I did NOT write "the whole of the clergy in South Wales". They were your words friend.
      I wrote "the vast majority of the CinW clergy .....".
      I can think of only two recent examples of CinW clergy standing up to the Dark Lord.
      The letter signed by 20 plus clergy of St David's diocese demanding an investigation into Carl Cooper's extra-marital affair with his lady chaplain.
      The recent Governing Body vote by the clergy against the confiscation of their wedding and funeral fees.
      For the record I wholeheartedly support those clergy in both the stated examples.

      If only there were more such examples of the clergy giving ++Barry a bloody nose.
      Please DO tell us of any others.


      The Methodists decide to come clean at long last.

  6. Fascinated Outsider15 May 2015 at 15:21

    What would Jesus say? I wouldn't be so foolish or arrogant to claim to know. But I imagine he would probably weep.

  7. @ Reformer. I am a little wary of Pauline Christianity : St Paul is very authoritarian and sensorious. I am a follower of Jesus Christ,the Son of God ,whom I see as compassionate through the Love of his Father, who is Love.

    1. St Paul is the principal architect of the theology of the new Christian community as it emerges from its Jewish roots into the gentile world. His writings form part of the accepted canon of scripture, with the full authority of the Church, expressed in General Councils and in many local synods in the following centuries. They can not be dispensed with as a matter of personal preference. Nor is there any rational basis for setting up Jesus and Paul in opposition to one another. Paul - one of the outstanding Jewish theologians of his day - was called by Jesus to be an apostle and to teach his church. There are many hard sayings in the words of Jesus, who calls sinners to repentance first if they wish to receive the blessings of forgiveness.

    2. What would Jesus say?15 May 2015 at 20:01

      Which is why the early church had his letters incorporated into the Bible in the first place.
      The Pick'n'mix approach of Barry Morgan and his cronies would be worthy of Woolworths but look what happened to them!

    3. It is entirely acceptable to live by the canonical Gospels, in fact it is a requirement.

    4. It is also the case that the Letters of S. Paul are our earliest written evidence for Christianity and Christian teaching.

    5. It is a requirement to live by the whole Word of God, including the four canonical gospels, and not excluding the rest of the Old and New Testaments. The books of the bible are not presented to us a la carte, to pick and choose as we please.

  8. Dear Old Nick- certainly S.Paul are early written works but this does not alter the fact that some of his writings are extreme and OTT. Or is it that in modern times selective writing is taken out of context to support the radical views of some?

    1. St Paul's writings are just as canonical as the four gospels. Which ones do you propose to discard? How does that make you any different from our Lost Bishops?

  9. Llandaff Pelican20 May 2015 at 07:35

    Reformer, I think you will find that, as Anglicans, our motto is not 'Sola Scriptura' (which is a Lutheran principle). We live-out our Christian lives by recourse Scripture, of course; but also to tradition and reason. To say that 'It is a requirement to live by the whole Word of God' is okay insofar as it goes; but that cannot be the last word for Anglicans.

    Unfortunately, we have an Archbishop who has abused this fundamental theological principle, with his selective use of Scripture, his contempt for tradition as a living and developing dimension of the Church's mission, and an equally selective appeal to reason. Nonetheless, this should not give the rest of us permission to fall into some kind of mindless biblical fundamentalism. That has not been the Anglican way - and I hope it never will be (unless, of course, 'Fog' from Bangor becomes the next Archbishop - from which possibility 'Good Lord deliver us!).

    1. Accepting the whole of the bible is part of the very definition of Anglicanism. This is very different from Sola Scriptura, which is a different argument,

      So, LP, which parts of the word of God do you reject? And how does that make you different from the Abp and his fellow travellers?

  10. Dear Llandaff Pelican
    Do you actually think that +Bangor will change so completely if becomes ++? I see no sign currently of "mindless biblical fundamentalism", unless of course support for women priests and bishops comes under that banner, and support for gay marriage

  11. Llandaff Pelican21 May 2015 at 07:39

    Why, Reformer, do you presume that I reject any part of Scripture? If you read my earlier post correctly, you will see that I was arguing for the whole of the Scriptural canon (Apocrypha and all) IN RELATION to tradition and reason. Anglicans do not treat the Bible like Muslims do the Qu'ran! You will also see that I was arguing against the selectivity of which you accuse me.

    1. LP, I wrote what I did because it seems to me that the undoing of Anglicanism is its refusal to acknowledge any authority other than its own contemporary opinion - justified by appeals to tradition and "reason" for its interpretation (or more properly revisionism) of holy scripture.

      Tradition has been around a very long time, and it is possible to find arguments and precedents for almost anything. "Reason", properly understood, is the use of our critical faculty to examine tradition and to ascertain what is orthodox and what is not. In Anglican hands it has become the supreme judge of all else, with the disastrous results which we see in the Church in Wales.

      Scripture however is fixed by Canon and unchanging from generation to generation. If we look there for our authority, rather than looking for ingenious arguments by which the plain meaning of scripture can be overturned, then we have the assurance of God's word written for our faith and for our life as the body of Christ.

      Rather than make the church conform to the world, we should always be looking to see how well the church conforms to God's word. Like the Ten Commandments, God has revealed it all for our edification.

  12. Fascinated Outsider21 May 2015 at 07:51

    I must say that this is thread is attracting a fair smattering of comments from the extreme fringes. I am left wondering if Reformer, with his hard-line reactions to the comments of others, is actually reading the same text as I am? Which leads me to wonder whether he is reading the same Bible as I am? But, of course, that was Blake's point with his recognition that

    The image of Christ that thou dost see
    Is my vision's greatest enemy...
    Both read the Bible day and night
    But thou readst black where I read white.

    Where the things of God are concerned, I have always valued less certainty and more humility.