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Saturday, 30 April 2016

Friday, 29 April 2016

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Christianity erased from history and memory

(ANSAmed) - ROME, APRIL 27 - Rome's iconic Trevi Fountain will be lit up red on April 29 to
 highlight the plight of Christian martyrs  and victims of persecution in many parts
 of the world, including the Middle East, west Africa and Pakistan.

An event in Rome tomorrow highlights the plight of Christian martyrs and victims of persecution around the world. More here.  Subsequent report here.

While Christians are being persecuted and martyred today, all traces of Christianity are being "erased from the Middle East and expunged from memory".

Christian minorities throughout the Middle East have long maintained that "the history taught in public classrooms habitually suppresses the region's Christian heritage while magnifying (including by lying about) Islam".

"It sounds absurd, but Muslims more or less know nothing about Christians, even though they make up a large part of the population and are in fact the original Egyptians," said Kamal Mougheeth, a retired teacher in Egypt. "Egypt was Christian for six or seven centuries [before the Muslim invasion around 640]. The sad thing is that for many years the history books skipped from Cleopatra to the Muslim conquest of Egypt. The Christian era was gone. Disappeared. An enormous black whole."

"One of Islam's bitterest ironies: a great many of today's Middle East Christians are being persecuted by Muslims — including of the ISIS variety — whose own ancestors were persecuted Christians who converted to Islam to end their suffering. In other words, Muslim descendants of persecuted Christians are today slaughtering their Christian cousins. Christians are seen as "foreign traitors" in part because many Muslims do not know of their own Christian ancestry".

The article can be found in 'Middle East Forum' here.

An ISIS video released last month shows members of its religious police
in Mosul, Iraq, burning hundreds of Christian books it deems blasphemous.

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Whatever happened to Auntie?

In a statement on the BBC's website, Tunde Ogungbesan (pictured), head of diversity, inclusion and succession at the BBC, said: 'The BBC is a diverse organisation, whichever way you look at it'
In a statement on the BBC's website, Tunde Ogungbesan (pictured), head of diversity,
inclusion  and 
succession at the BBC, said: 'The BBC is a diverse organisation,
whichever way you look at it'. Source: Mail Online

From the Mail Online: "One in six BBC stars 'must be gay or lesbian or disabled' by 2020 says new staff-hiring guidelines at the corporation".

Long gone are the days of 'Auntie knew best' when every fad, fiction and fantasy takes precedence over journalistic excellence and quality of production.

"A statement from a BBC spokesperson said: 'We are making good progress in our work to make the BBC a truly diverse organisation, but there's more to do and we're always keen to improve. 'Almost half of our workforce is made up of women and the proportion of our workforce who are black, Asian and other ethnic minorities is at an all-time high. 'We'll continue doing what works but also develop new and innovative ideas to do even better, and we'll set this out in our new diversity strategy shortly'."

So that is what is happening to BBC programmes. Instead of concentrating excellence in production no matter what colour, race or gender, first priority is given to a politically correct ticking box mix.

How does this work in practice? If all are treated equal, how do the staff-hiring guidelines work? While a disability may be obvious on interview, it would appear to defeat equality objectives if one has to declare one's sexuality on an application form.

How many future 'straight' stars may we be deprived of because the BBC insists on a quota of 'gay, lesbian or disabled' folk. How long before someone like the Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Succession decides that all manner of minorities must be represented to ensure the Corporation appeals to the diverse BBC audience?

The British public would be better served if the Beeb looks to content regardless of gender and ethnicity. Come back Auntie, we need you.

Postscript [28.04.2016]

From BBC News under Arts and Entertainment: BBC to quiz recruits on family background.

Staff joining the BBC will be asked about their socio-economic background, as part of a bid to increase diversity at the corporation.

Candidates will be asked if they were entitled to free school meals, and if their parents attended university.

Anonymised job applications will also be extended for core roles.

The plans come after the BBC faced pressure from ministers to increase numbers of staff from under-represented backgrounds.

Read all about it here

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Catholic tales

The first Anglicans have received into the Roman Catholic Church under a scheme set up by Pope Benedict XVI.
Pope Benedict XVI leads the New Year solemn mass in Saint Peter's Basilica at the Vatican Photo: EPA

A headline from The Telegraph in January 2011:

"First Anglicans are received into the Roman Catholic Church in historic service. The first Anglicans have been received into the Roman Catholic Church under a scheme set up by Pope Benedict XVI." 

After five years I am pleased for those Anglicans who have made the journey and have found contentment but there are still many Anglicans who are unable or unwilling to make the same journey for a variety of reasons even though their own church has left them.

I greatly admire Pope Benedict XVI. He showed great courage in setting up the Ordinariate. I am pleased that his vision has been a success but I feel less affection for a church which has caused so much misery to so many in the name of Christ.

Families built on 'mixed' marriages over many generations will have experienced refusal to recognise marriages, rejection of children and cruelty meted out by nuns, Christian Brothers and the like. Not having been directly on the receiving end, it is easy for me to say it is the message not the messenger but that has not prevented those who have suffered refusing to return, often leaving a gap in their lives. I find that so sad.

What amazes me is the ignorance of many cradle Catholics, not just the laity but priests too, who appear to regard non-Catholics (separated brethren) as though they are barely Christian and doomed to purgatory. Ironically many Anglo Catholics are probably more 'Roman' in their worship than many cradle RCs so I was particularly disappointed to read a well respected blogger penning  Eucharistic Miracles and Protestants? Perhaps it is simply the zeal of a Pauline convert or the perception of a former Evangelical but I do not recognise my fellow worshippers in this description as they genuflect to the Blessed Sacrament:

"Protestants deny the truth of transubstantiation... Nevertheless, when Protestants get upset that they are not admitted to communion in a Catholic Church, Eucharistic miracles remind us that Catholic do actually believe that something different is going on at Mass. Sure, we share baptism and faith in Jesus Christ with non Catholic Christians, but they themselves deny transubstantiation so I always wonder why they get upset when we affirm their denial and say they shouldn’t come to communion."

This was the Conclusion of the 1971 ARCIC declaration on Eucharistic Doctrine:

[12.] We believe that we have reached substantial agreement on the doctrine of the eucharist. Although we are all conditioned by the traditional ways in which we have expressed and practised our eucharistic faith, we are convinced that if there are any remaining points of disagreement they can be resolved on the principles here established. We acknowledge a variety of theological approaches within both our communions. But we have seen it as our task to find a way of advancing together beyond the doctrinal disagreements of the past. It is our hope that, in view of the agreement which we have reached on eucharistic faith, this doctrine will no longer constitute an obstacle to the unity we seek.

There has been more dissent born out of ignorance reported in the blogsphere. From Fr Hunwicke in Tales from the Ordinariate (2) and Twisting a Tale of the Ordinariate from Antique Richborough which thankfully offers more hope.

Amidst this squabbling it was another piece which caught my eye in the 'Catholicism Pure & Simple' blog, The Biggest News Story Never Told. - "What’s the biggest news story of our time? What has been the biggest story for the last decade and one-half? Answer: the resurgence of Islam, and, in particular, the rapid spread of Islamic jihad. But, with a few exceptions, you would never know it from reading the Catholic press."..."Catholic bloggers and journalists are still fighting yesterday’s battles without seeming to realize that we are in the midst of a new battle." [My emphasis - Ed.]

Christianity is being wiped out in the Middle East. It is frequently mocked in the West as secularism replaces faith. It does not help if people of faith opt for blind obedience out of fear. Fear God, yes, but worshippers should not be frightened into submission. That is Islam. God gave us free will. We should use it to unite in hope, not divide. 

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Another nice mess

As my friend Barack said to me George, "Well, here's another nice mess we've gotten ourselves into!"

The world and his wife it seems are piling on the pressure to tell us Brits that we should remain in Europe. To leave would be a catastrophe. If that is so, why in the world has Dave 'gotten' us into this mess at enormous cost financially and politically?

'Paddy Pantsdown' wagged his finger throughout BBC Question Time on Thursday as he previewed what President Barack Obama was to say about American blood being shed in Europe in the US's contribution to the 1917 - 1918 and the 1941- 1945 wars fighting for freedom in Europe. As Albert Steptoe once said, it might have been the '17 - '18 and '41 - '45 wars for them but it was the '14 - '18 and '39 - '45 wars for the rest of us. 

All in the 'IN' camp at home and abroad appear to be reading from the same news sheet prepared and circulated by No 10. That is in addition to the £9 million of tax payers money they have spent on circulating propaganda for the 'IN' campaign. So much so that it is difficult to trust anything that is said or written about the consequences of leaving Europe.

Paddy Pantsdown claims that every important world organisation and every world leader "with the exception Vladimir Putin" wants us to remain in Europe. Indeed, the President of the United States has gone so far as to threaten that the UK would be left at the back of the queue when negotiating future trade deals with the US if we left, not that Obama will be President in that eventuality. But so much for friendship and our 'special relationship'. When self-interest rears its head it is OK in the US but not in Great Britain!

For many I suspect the head says IN but the heart says OUT. The decision would be easier if the self-perpetuating bureaucracy in Brussels desisted from regulating everything they can think of plus anything else they had not thought of when it comes to light. If Turkey is allowed in that will allow another flood of economic migrants with all the dangers already apparent as they try to impose their alien ideology on their hosts. The last thing we need is more failed multiculturalism.

My feeling is that the British people have had enough of being told what to think and what to do and are inclined to vote with their hearts, sink or swim.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Two remarkable women

Yesterday Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her 90th birthday. Having dedicated her life to service, her long reign is a consequence of the tragic early death of her father, George VI, at the young age 56. The BBC broadcast a family tribute here

The BBC re-scheduled their programmes to broadcast another tribute yesterday following another early death, that of the Queen of comedy, Victoria Wood. Her observance of life informed her remarkable ability to make us laugh. I haven't laughed so much in years.

To two remarkable women. Thank you.  

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

If you stand for nothing, you'll fall for anything

I found this 'live and let live' attitude of college kids to life rather endearing. There is no aggression, simply a polite, that's OK with me provided it is not hurting others attitude. 

That is fine on the surface but then the students are forced to consider the logic of their attitudes. 

How have elders of Church and State fallen into the same trap? Or are they guilty of indoctrination?

My thanks to Underground Pewster for this.

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Playing the victim

Hat tip to The Spectator for this video clip, "BBC mayoral debate: Sadiq and Zac try to set the record straight over ‘extremism’ allegations".

In the clip a student from Notting Hill complains that her Muslim friends often felt uncomfortable in public when in Islamic dress. She asked the candidates how they could help tackle such prejudice in the city. 

Understandably candidates seeking votes do not want to alienating voters so Muslims in Islamic dress are identified as victims of prejudice without question.

A comparison:

Source: Daily Sabah/AA Photo
Diyanet Center of America, a Turkish-funded complex containing culture centers and one of the largest mosques in the United States, was inaugurated on Saturday by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who defined the site as a place to serve American Muslims and spread Islam’s message of love and compassion - DAILY SABAH

From Gatestone Institute: "Turkey Builds Mega-Mosque in U.S., Blocks Churches in Turkey":

  • As yet another enormous mosque has opened in the U.S. (funded by the Turkish government), Christians in Turkey are waiting for the day when Turkish state authorities will allow them freely to build or use their churches and safely pray inside them.
  • In Turkey, some churches have been converted to stables or used as storehouses. Others have been completely destroyed. Sales of churches on the internet are a common practice.
  • Meanwhile, Turkish President Erdogan said during the opening ceremony of the Maryland mosque that the center was important at a time of an "unfortunate rise in intolerance towards Muslims in the United States and the world."
  • How would Muslims feel if mosques in Mecca were put up for sale on the internet, turned into stables, or razed to the ground? How would they feel if a Muslim child were beaten in the classroom by his teacher for not saying "Jesus is my Lord and Savior?" How would they feel if they continually received violent threats or insults for just attempting peacefully to worship in their mosques?

It is too easy to play the victim.

Monday, 18 April 2016

Mission Llandaff II

A rainbow of hoops under the Majestas in Llandaff Cathedral         Source: Church in Wales/Llandaff

 "Our purpose is therefore to: Worship God and share the gospel of Jesus Christ. In so doing, we welcome all who come here, irrespective of gender, race, creed or sexuality, in order that we might share and pass on our rich Christian heritage and the joy of Christian Faith." - From the Llandaff Diocese Mission Statement.

From the 2014 Trustees' Report (page 5) in the Llandaff Diocesan Board of Finance  Accounts which can be found on the Charity Commission web site.

"Public benefit

The trustees confirm that they have complied with the duty in section 4(1) of the Charities Act 2011 to have due regard to the Charity Commission's general guidance on public benefit, "Charities and Public Benefit". The Board believes that, by promoting the work of the Church in Wales in the Diocese of Llandaff it helps to promote the whole mission of the Church (pastoral, evangelistic, social and ecumenical) more effectively, both in the Diocese as a whole and in its individual parishes, and that in doing so it provides a benefit to the public by:

• providing facilities for public worship, pastoral care and spiritual, moral and intellectual
development, both for its members and for anyone who wishes to benefit from what the Church
offers; and

• promoting Christian values, and service by members of the Church in and to their communities, to
the benefit of individuals and society as a whole."

It difficult to reconcile Dr Morgan's eager promotion of same sex unions with the 'Public benefit' referred to in the Trustees Report. He should explain how it is helping 'to promote the whole mission of the Church (pastoral, evangelistic, social and ecumenical) more effectively'.

Estimates of the number of homosexual people in the UK vary but taking 6% as the most reliable estimate, they will not all attend church let alone the Church in Wales. Of those who attend, few in my experience have expressed any desire for a church 'wedding'.

The accounts show that a grant of £12,579 was made to the 'Bishop's mission fund'. Donations are made to this fund 'primarily from collections taken at induction and confirmation services, and Gift Aid is claimed where appropriate. All monies received are paid over to the Bishop to be used at his discretion'.

I understand that it was this "Mission" fund which was used to finance the Llandaff clergy school in Oxford. If the Archbishop believes that mission funds are best spent on advancing same sex unions he should think again and ask the LGBT lobby to fund their own campaign not use money given to fund the mission of the Church.

The Church Times recently carried an article headed "Dr Morgan gives Bishops’ response to same-sex unions" in which he said: "The debate on same-sex relationships was not over. The issues around human sexuality that are being debated will not go away, and the pain is not over. We do believe that we are called to live in love and charity with one another, whatever our experience or convictions on this issue."

The only lack of love and charity is towards anyone who dares to take a contrary view and support traditional marriage. There lies the true pain.

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Mission Llandaff

Source: Twitter #speakingthegospelintoourcontext

Many of the comments received following my blog entries are centred on the diocese of Llandaff, its Cathedral and its personnel from clerical top to lowly bottom. 

The situation in Llandaff is dire. In the Cathedral church there are complaints about poor accounting practices, a lack of openness and bullying tactics being used to counter honestly held opinions expressed for the good of the Cathedral church. Whatever the financial situation it has not prevented the clergy from enjoying four days in Oxford at the expense of Llandaff's pewsters.

Had the discussions in Oxford been about the parlous state of the Church in Wales, especially Llandaff Cathedral, or of the mission of the Church in general, the jolly in Oxford may have been understandable but Mission Llandaff has more to do with the missionary position than mission itself with topics such as "faith gender sex".

After a session on "Every age should look to its own context for our expression of faith" Prof. Diarmaid MacCulloch posed the question: "Is there a theology of sex and marriage?" A popular broadcaster, Prof. MacCulloch was ordained as a deacon in the Church of England but declined ordination to the priesthood because of the church's attitude to his homosexuality, unlike many clergy today, including bishops, who brazenly flout the rules, putting their own desires before the well-being of the Church.

Following on from the bishops' failed bid to persuade the Governing Body of the Church in Wales to adopt their strategy of permitting same sex marriage in church, Mission Llandaff looks nothing more than a blatant attempt to ensure that the Bench's carefully crafted 'not blessing' prayers are used in Llandaff diocese churches, contrary to the decision of worshippers while they are pressed to give more money to support policies they don't agree with.

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

A sorry tale

Muslim women in east London
Muslim women in east London                                                                              Source: Telegraph

Perhaps I blinked and missed it but I have seen no outcry over last week's news that Oxford University is deviating from its 800-year-old tradition to remain relevant to "the dramatic change" in the U.K., by allowing its undergraduate theology students to skip studying Christianity after the first year of their degree, and choose instead subjects like "Feminist Approaches to Theology and Religion" and "Buddhism in Space and Time".

There was more coverage of the news that Air France company chiefs had sent staff a memo informing them that female staff on flights to Tehran would be required "to wear trousers during the flight with a loose fitting jacket and a scarf covering their hair on leaving the plane". Air France said that all air crew were "obliged like other foreign visitors to respect the laws of the countries to which they travelled. Iranian law requires that a veil covering the hair be worn in public places by all women on its territory." Outraged female employees of Air France have since been allowed to opt out of working on flights to Iran so that they can avoid having to wear a headscarf.

Compare Islamic requirements when passing through Muslim countries with the treatment meted out to a Christian NHS worker who lost her appeal over freedom to talk to a Muslim colleague about her faith. Also, a Sheffield University student who was expelled from his course after expressing support for biblical teaching on marriage on his own Facebook page. In a Swiss secondary school two Muslim boys were allowed not to shake hands with women teachers - a common greeting in Swiss schools - because it was "against their faith to touch a woman outside their family". Try telling that to the abused children of Rochdale.

By contrast Muslims are allowed to wear what they like because of their religion and mostly behave as they like, even preaching jihad. Intentionally or unintentionally the perception is that Islam is holy and must be respected even if conversion is by the sword while Christianity is to be avoided because a pen has been used to spread salvation according to biblical teaching.

The consequences are already with us:
"British Muslims are becoming a nation within a nation, the former chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission has warned". Commenting on "a ground-breaking survey", Trevor Phillips said we are "in danger of sacrificing a generation of young British people to values that are antithetical to the beliefs of most of us, including many Muslims". He called for the abandonment of "the failed policy of multiculturalism". [Channel 4 programme here.]

His comments came as the ICM survey for Channel 4, which surveyed 1,000 Muslims face-to-face, found that:
  • One in 25 Muslims (four per cent) said they felt at least some sympathy with people who took part in suicide bombings, while a similar proportion said they had some sympathy with “people who commit terrorist actions as a form of political protest”.
  • A quarter – 25 per cent – said they could understand why British school girls could be attracted to become “jihadi brides” overseas.
  • Less than half (47 per cent) agreed that Muslims should do more to tackle the causes of extremism in the Muslim community.
  • 52 per cent believed homosexuality should not be legal in Britain, 39 per cent agreed “wives should always obey their husbands”, and 31 per cent said it was acceptable for a man to have more than one wife.
See also What British Muslims think.

Under Human Rights legislation, Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion

1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

2. Freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs shall be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of public safety, for the protection of public order, health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.

Sadly some are more equal than others. A sorry tale indeed and not a murmur from LGBTQI obsessed Church leaders as the "invasion" continues.

Friday, 8 April 2016

Bishops should apologise for hurt caused to ignored faithful Anglicans

Source: Gay Times

The above photograph is entirely apposite to the circumstances the Church finds herself in as the pews continue to empty. The Gay Times published an article titled "Archbishop of Wales apologises for LGBT prejudice" under a picture of a nave full of empty seats which appears to be the ultimate desire of many bishops as they follow secular trends instead of proclaiming the Gospel to make new disciples. The bishops make claims with no supporting evidence. By contrast there is strong evidence of prejudice and bullying of the faithful here.

Reports of the bishops' strategy have been widespread including this from The Independent:

The Church in Wales did publish a series of prayers which can be said with a couple following the celebration of a civil partnership or civil marriage. "We, as bishops, feel that this is the right thing to do at this time. I realise that some people will regard these prayers as too little too late and others will regard them as a step too far. No one is compelled to use them, but they are provided for those who would like to do so. These prayers do not constitute a service of blessing."

The prayers may not constitute a service of blessing but it will be hard to spot the difference where there is a will to introduce same sex marriage using their 'stepping stones' strategy. As I have been told many times, familiarity will make it appear normal.

The bishops should be ashamed of themselves for having flouted the will of Church members after wasteful consultation exercises. ++Barry has tried every trick in the book to legitimise his thinking and has failed so he he gone illegitimate.

The same sex marriage consultation was a farce, designed only to test the water for sufficient votes to introduce legislation, as was the GB exercise. No matter what views were expressed or how members of the Church in Wales voted ++Barry's agenda is clear. The more women the better, the gayer the better. 

While there can be "no official acceptance of gay marriage or of blessings in the Church in Wales yet", with ++Barry's blessing there can be prayers which will be used to the same effect.

The bishops' duplicitous actions debase Mother Church. They should apologise to the faithful unreservedly.

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Bishops' rank hypocrisy

Wedding finger
Getting married in the Church in Wales

The introduction to the Church in Wales Marriage Service describes marriage as a gift from God.  The Bible teaches that marriage is a life-long, faithful union between a man and a woman, and compares married love with the love Jesus has for his people – a love expressed in his willing sacrifice of himself on the cross.

Gay-Rights-Same-Sex-Marriage-Symbols-Rainbow-Flag-jpg Compare the above introduction taken from the Church in Wales web site under the heading Marriage with the same-sex marriage Press Release in which the bishops of the Church in Wales draw attention to a joint pastoral letter issued in response to consultations and debates on same-sex marriage across the Church in Wales last year, as well as to a statement from the Primates of the Anglican Communion in January. It contains this grovelling apology for alleged mistreatment:

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

We recognise that you have often been persecuted and ostracized by the Church for your sexuality, that you have been mistreated by the Church, and forced into secrecy and dissimulation by the attitudes of prejudice which you have faced.  We deplore such hostility, and welcome and affirm the words of the Primates that condemn homophobic prejudice and violence.  We too commit ourselves to offering you the same loving service and pastoral care to which all humanity is entitled, and we commit ourselves to acting to provide a safe space within the Church and within our communities in which you can be honest and open, respected and affirmed.

While as a Church we remain unable to bless the committed partnerships you form in marriage or in civil partnership, yet we commit ourselves as bishops to work for a Church in which you can be fully affirmed as equal disciples of Jesus Christ or seekers after truth.  We will pray with you and for you, that together we may seek God’s blessing on our lives, and for faithful discipleship.”

This has Llandaff written all over it. If we consider two former bishops of Llandaff, both were loved by many but received entirely different treatment. One resigned after being accused of indecency. He was not "persecuted and ostracized". I recall numerous diocesan occasions when the bishop was present. He later returned to pastoral and episcopal work. The other bishop was not in favour of the ordination of women. His life was made hell.

The Press Statement continues - In the letter, the bishops acknowledge that while the consultations showed that the Church is not yet ready to allow or bless same-sex marriage, the debate is not over. They commit to working for a Church in which gay and lesbian people are “fully affirmed as equal disciples” and to praying with and for them. They also apologise to gay and lesbian people for the persecution and mistreatment they have endured at the hands of the Church and they commit themselves to providing a safe place within the Church for all gay and lesbian people. [My emphasis - Ed.]

The bishops "apologise to gay and lesbian people for the persecution and mistreatment they have endured at the hands of the Church" but where is the evidence? If gay people want to wear their sexuality on their sleeves we are entitled to ask for some facts. What persecution and mistreatment and directed at whom, clergy and/or laity? What proportions of the clergy are gay, lesbian or transgender? And what about heterosexual couples "living in sin"? Are they not worthy of an apology?

In my previous entry I drew attention to the claim that bullying played a part in persuading women to leave the Church and that many victims "vote with their feet, and leave the organisation. 

The bishops are encouraging the same strategy as was highlighted in the ordination of women campaign. Exploit the "victim" status, slander and stereotype (substitute homophobic for misogynist) and intimidation.

Before they go any further the bishops should consider who the real victims are of their secularisation of the Church in Wales.

Monday, 4 April 2016

Bullying is back on the Agenda

Photo: Church in Wales

Bullying, or 'alleged' bullying, rears its ugly head at the forthcoming meeting of the Governing Body of the Church in Wales.

In Question time (Item 16) on Day 2 the Archdeacon of Llandaff continues her campaigning. She demands to know:
 "What steps have been taken by the Standing Committee and dioceses to
circulate the (Todd) “Report on the Representation of Women in the
Church in Wales 2015” to deaneries and parishes, and what actions have
been taken in response to the recommendations?"

This late entrant to the Church seems more intent on advancing the role of women in the Church regardless of merit than proclaiming the Gospel message as received.

The Todd Report was debated at GB last April. Here is a flavour.

Dr Gill Todd (Swansea & Brecon):
 "The proposals in the report, she said, were designed to "achieve change and embed gender equality unequivocally in the Church in Wales for ever; and, secondly, to make the Church in Wales recognise the joy that comes from men and women working together in God's name; and the pain that comes from continued discrimination and bullying. A failure to recognise the gifts, calling, and vocation of others is a failure to demonstrate Christlike behaviour."

The Archdeacon also adds her name along the Rev Jan Gould of Llandaff to the question:
 "In the light of the final communiqué from the Primates of the Anglican
Communion after their meeting in January, can the Bishops outline how
they propose to respond now to continuing calls by the LGBT members of
the Church in Wales and their supporters for full and equal inclusion and

That anyone from Llandaff could add their names to such a question seems ridiculous from what I hear and read about Llandaff. Granted some commentators complain of not being accepted although no evidence has been produced and I do not know anyone who has experienced it. The question alleges that there is not "full and equal inclusion and acceptance" in which one has to ask, how do all the gay clergy manage to perform their ministry?

On a practical level, if the questioners have the laity in mind, what do they propose? Stewards and welcomers asking, "Excuse me, are you gay?" so that they can give them an affirming hug? When it comes to worship a person's sexuality is irrelevant so why would anyone see the need to flag it?

Such questions are bullying in themselves. They present statements as factual then demand action regardless of proof but it is this statement by Dr Todd which takes the prize for double standards:
 "Bullying also played a part in persuading women to leave the Church, she said. Many victims "vote with their feet, and leave the organisation. Unfortunately, they also leave the bully to make the next person's life a misery." [My emphasis -Ed.]

Considering how many worshippers have left the Church, including many devout women, over the ordination of women and the bullying which took place at all levels in order to secure the vote, such statements would be laughable if they were not so pathetic, especially when the prime bully continues to pursue his agenda against the real victims when it is he who is out of step with the teaching of the wider Church.

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Archbishop's intervention argues for Brexit!

Source: Wales Online

Wales online reports that the Archbishop of Wales, who, in his episcopal capacity represents just 1% of the population of Wales, "urges Wales to vote to stay in the European Union".

Given his record of duff appointments and the state of the Church in Wales under his stewardship, the fact that Dr Morgan is in favour of remaining in the EU suggests that exit is probably advisable.

Average Sunday attendance has dwindled to around 30,000. Under his stewardship the Church in Wales faces extinction. With no accountability Dr Morgan has pursued a flawed agenda with his fixation on gay 'rights' culminating in a GB exercise to accept same sex marriage, reflecting the whims of a secular society rather than making disciples of all nations, Dr Morgan has followed a policy modelled on the example of the fatally flawed Episcopal Church of the United States.

As the Archbishop approaches retirement age, coincidentally the forthcoming meeting of the Governing Body of the Church in Wales is to consider the retirement age for clergy but fears that this had  been inspired by the Mugabe instinct of self perpetuation may be unfounded.

To their credit the Age Limits Working Group (Para. 29) favours retention of a compulsory retirement age for clergy believing that...
"this is justifiable, in terms of the Equality Act 2010, for a number of reasons. First, while recognising the high proportion of clergy approaching the current retirement age, the Group believes the future needs and mission of the Church would best be served by taking all steps necessary to encourage more (and younger) vocations rather than by permitting clergy to stay longer in office. A second reason is to avoid the potential tensions and harm – both to an organisation and to individuals – which can arise when it is deemed necessary to invoke capability procedures because of the declining performance of someone with long and valued service. Through Terms of Service the Church now has a mechanism to manage ‘competency’ issues but it would be undesirable for all involved for this to be used as a means of bringing about retirements. A third reason is that retention of a retirement age will, in time, provide the opportunity to achieve a better gender balance, particularly amongst clergy in senior posts. As the 2015 ‘Report on Representation of Women in the Church in Wales’ has shown, women are still significantly under-represented in senior posts. In 2014 only 11% of Bishops, Deans, Archdeacons and Area Deans were women. In part this is because women have only been ordained priest in the Church in Wales since 1996. But retirement of senior clerics now provides much more opportunity to select from both genders as many more women clerics have been ordained for sufficient time to have acquired the necessary experience for such posts. Retention of a compulsory retirement age also provides more opportunities for ‘career progression’ to senior appointments generally."

I would go further. The position of Archbishop should be subject to re-election after three years at the most to avoid repeating the sort of agenda which has split the Church resulting in faithful worshippers virtually excommunicated, attendance at an all time low and the demise of the historic Parish system. Without revival the Church in Wales has had its day. Headship must give way to leadership with a chance to change if leadership is not clearly demonstrated.