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Wednesday, 17 June 2015

It's a funny old world

Christina Rees CBE (Photo: Guardian)                 Bishop Anba Angaelos OBE (Photo: Cranmer)

Ebola scarcely warrants a mention in the media these days thanks to the selfless individuals who literally put their lives on the line in their fight to halt the spread of this highly infectious and generally fatal disease. The Queens Birthday Honours 2015 included a wide variety of people with carefully scaled awards. One of those in the news was a poorly paid Ebola nurse Will Pooley. He was awarded an MBE.

Contrast Will's lowly award for risking his life for the benefit of others with the higher accolades handed out over the years to over-paid footballers for kicking an inflated bladder around a large, grass covered spittoon in front of worshiping clones who clap and gesticulate in unison with hands held aloft, cheering or jeering as the mood takes them while chanting their local mantra, all in the name of sport!

There was less publicity for the Women and the Church (WATCH) starlet Christina Rees who bizarrely was awarded a CBE for "her services to the Church of England". How involvement in the campaign for women bishops is seen as a service to the Church of England is not explained but deluded as ever, Ms Rees said she was "thrilled" by the honour which to her shows the campaign was "recognised as a service for the whole Church, not just about women".

The "whole Church" includes the Catholic Church, the Orthodox Church and the majority of Anglicans who view her campaigning as a disservice to the Church which has resulted in a steep decline in Church attendance as the feminisation of the Church of England accelerates.

But do not despair says the Canon Treasurer of Salisbury Cathedral and former NHS Chief Nurse, Dame Sarah Mullally, who was recently named as Bishop of Crediton: "Empty pews are not the end of the world" (here). Perhaps not but the end of the Church of England.

Again, contrast the CBE award to Christian Rees for "her services to the Church of England" with the lesser OBE awarded to Bishop Anba Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the UK, honoured for services to international "religious freedom", not something that WATCH is renowned for except on their own terms.

Meanwhile in Wales there was no honour for the Archbishop of the Church in Wales who like Ms Rees has used every device to secure the admission of women to the episcopate. But he has been invited to deliver a keynote speech exploring the "ethical dilemmas faced by decision-makers when investing billions on behalf of charities". Not know for his own charitable views towards anyone who disagrees with him, he has plenty of experience of how things can go downhill. It is interesting to note that charities for the advancement of religion account for about one fifth of all registered charities. One pound in six given to charity goes to religious charities (here).

Dr Morgan said, "How and where we invest our money can say a lot about us. If we believe in values such as justice, equality and respect for others we need to reflect that as much as possible in our investments – literally putting our money where our mouth is." It is thought unlikely that the Archbishop's discretionary funds will be referred to.

As Margaret Thatcher said at her last cabinet meeting after being ousted from office, "It's a funny old world". Not words a compliant bench of bishops is likely to hear.


  1. Perfect timing AB.

    The latest Llandaff DBF accounts have been received and published by the Charity Commission at

    Page 21 reveals another £19,095 blown on the "Bishop's Discretionary Fund" with a further "£7,918" under the catch all vague heading of "Miscellaneous".

    On page 23 is revealed that the "Bishop's Mission Fund" expenditure for 2014 came to £12,579 (instead of £16,231 in 2013). Having learned of His ++Darkness dipping his hands into the collection plate, it would appear that the pew-sitters have decided to vote with their wallets and give Bazza a 25% haircut.
    It couldn't happen to a nicer chap!

    Even so, he's blown £40k again. On what?

    1. News on the Green is that His Darkness has booked Christ Church Oxford for his farewell Clergy School for the diocese of Llandaff in April 2016. Apparently it is to be paid for out of his slush fund, i.e. cash taken from the laity for the bishop’s mission fund being used to give the diocesan clergy a massive freebie in Oxford. At least when the laity question exactly what their clergy do, we will know the answer for those few days in April 2016 – having a holiday at our expense.
      Surely it would be cheaper to Llandaff cathedral as the base for this clergy school? Let’s face it, it’s empty for most of the week!

    2. Clergy school in Oxford?
      Why not book and use St Michelle's College in Llandaff?
      After all, he blew a cool £1.7 million to "update" the old place with all the necessary mod cons including a lift for all the disabled/injured staff and students who use the place, PLUS I hear the RB is still ploughing in some £150k a year to keep the place afloat and fiddle, ooops sorry, "balance" the books.
      The Diocese would save a small fortune on travel costs to Oxford too.

    3. But is it not costing the diocese anything! If His Darkness is bankrolling this jolly from his ‘discretionary/slush/mission’ fund it would appear from previous postings on this blog that those monies are taken straight from the plate at his confirmations and ordinations. So it is us, again, who will be funding the freeloaders. Nothing changes!

    4. From which accounts will those attending claim their expenses? Parish, Diocese or Bazza's slush fund?
      Whatever the case the point is well made that the Arch hypocrite is not putting potential business the way of his own theological college that's on his doorstep and desperate for money.
      An expensive jolly is more in keeping with his spendthrift usual habits.

    5. Of one thing you can be certain.

      Barry Morgan will not be spending his "discretionary" Mission funds where they are most needed in case he pees off his local Muslim friends.

  2. The problem is that persons can be nominated for honours by members of the public and the recommendations are considered by a Civil Service committee. Thus Christine Rees honour is a political propaganda exercise.
    What on earth is that photographic pose about ?

  3. "As long as we get our way, and we have women deacons, priests, bishops, archbishops, what does it matter if the pews empty, the churches close, and the only people left in post are the hierarchy - hundreds of generals without any soldiers? The politically correct civil servants will still be dishing out the KBEs and CBEs which we think are much more important than playing at being ministers in God's (former) Church".

  4. Llandaff Pelican18 June 2015 at 14:49

    Christina Rees clearly got her gong for the gracious, intelligent and non-partisan fashion in which she has pursued her commitment to equality in the Church of England, with a strong desire to enable all those with whom she disagrees to have an equal place at the table. Or may be not. At this rate it must only be a matter of time before the Archintolerableliberal himself is dusting off the morning suit before setting off to Buck House to receive his? Byzantine Barry CBE for services towards the rapid decline of the Church in Wales.

    1. "Arise, Sir Barry" - your church is sinking without trace!

    2. Surely His ++Irrelevance is far more likely to be so honoured for his "Services" to Swann Hellenic?

    3. Beleaguered of Bangor22 June 2015 at 08:03

      If a gong for promoting the decline of the Church should be awarded anywhere, it should be up here in Bangor: Bishop Andy Pandy OBE - for rapidly undoing all his predecessor achieved in record time. Yesterday it was announced that another of the former Deaness's acolytes, Canon Nia Williams, would be leaving the Diocese to 'pursue other interests.' This now means that there are more native Welsh-speaking Bangor clergy outside the Diocese than there are in it! Never mind, it was also announced that a monolingual English-speaking priest from (wait for it...) Leicestershire would be coming to the Welsh-speaking heartlands to become (and it gets even better...) a vocations officer!

      And still Andy Pandy maintains the evangelical grin, completely oblivious to the fact that he is running the whole operation into the ground. Word has it that the Archdeacon (sic) for Mission, Mike (known to his friends as Fred) West is to become the next Dean - a tacit admission that his nomadic strategizing around the Diocese has been an abject failure. Jobs for the boys - and, yet again, the Cathedral Church of Bangor will have a Dean who can't speak a word of Welsh. Never mind, neither can any of the other staff there.

    4. Some information on the appointment of new Vocations Officer for the Diocese of Bangor here

      From the Press Release:
      "Dominic has a civil partner, Anthony, who is a member of the Gorsedd. Together they enjoy bird watching"
      Plenty of opportunities for that in the Church in Wales!

    5. Dominic was ordained as a Catholic priest, and the only reason he swam the other was is because his homosexuality is more important to him that his initial calling to the priesthood. What a cv for a vocations officer: put yourself and your desires first and fit God in as a secondary consideration.
      Suits the Archbishop obviously.

    6. John Pritchard23 June 2015 at 12:39

      Obviously the partner wanted to return to Wales and Andy C*ap (as he is affectionately know in many circles), unable to recruit a Welsh-speaking priest with sustained experience of Welsh culture and the church context, is happy to add another member to the growing gay mafia in the Meirionnydd archdeaconry with its cottage-going Archdeacon - whom I would never believe, even if he told me today was Tuesday 23rd June 2015.

      Interestingly, in the same news feed is the news of a 'Link' wth the Diocese of Meath & Kildare. Why? We had a well-established link with Dublin and Glendalough. What was the problem with this? Andy C*ap too threatened by the scholarly Archbishop of Dublin, Michael Jackson, who would show him up? Or may be, Bishopess Pat Storey of Meath & Kildare has one thing in common with her opposite number in Bangor. They were both imposed on their respective dioceses without consensus and the poor bl**dy infantry are suffering the consequences of their inadequacy.

    7. What would Jesus say?23 June 2015 at 19:48

      Is having a boyfriend who sports a clerical collar the latest "must have" fashion accessory on the gay scene?
      Or is it rather having an openly gay "vocations" officer with a civil partner is the latest "must have" fashion accessory for a bishop in Wales?

  5. The reason the clergy school is at The House and not St Mike's is that it will be easier to attract speakers like... let me think... Christiana Rees, Lucy Winkett, Bishopess Libby Lane, Miranda Threlfall-Holmes of Durham, Charlotte Methuen, and it will be just a stroll around the corner for Richard Dawkins!