|The bishops of Monmouth, Bangor, St Davids (Bp-elect), Llandaff (Abp), Swansea and Brecon and St Asaph in Sacred Synod Source: Church in Wales|
Archbishop Barry Morgan retires today. Referred to on the Church in Wales twitter account as a 'progressive man never afraid to go against the grain', he leaves behind a legacy based on a liberal interpretation of the Bible designed to back his personal views on homosexuality. His interpretation of scripture has once again attracted scholarly criticism (here). Previous examples here and here.
On Sunday in what appeared to be a promotional service 'Light for Our Darkness', Dr Morgan gave a two part address which was oddly split by the singing of the Nunc Dimittus as if to add some sort of divine approval. The service was broadcast from the Cardiff Parish Church of St John the Baptist led by the Vicar, the Rev'd Canon Dr Sarah Rowland Jones, LVO, OBE, OStJ who, coincidentally, is hotly tipped to be the next bishop of Llandaff.
On listening to his address Dr Morgan appeared to be suggesting that opponents of his liberal views are guilty of 'hatred' and 'intolerance', hating the sinner rather than the sins Christ forgave.
Desperate to convert everyone to an acceptance of same sex marriage in Church the Archbishop has consistently put his own interpretation on Holy scripture. Had he been a junior cleric his views, though worrying, would have carried little weight when shared with a tiny congregation. But Dr Morgan is the Archbishop, eulogised by ill-informed commentators as the longest serving Archbishop in the Anglican Communion as if that in itself imparts wisdom.
As a bishop Dr Morgan was called to 'lead and teach', not to lead astray. He may be entitled to his own views but not to represent them as those of the whole Church or to penalise Church members who have disagreed while maintaining the faith of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church which the Church in Wales claims to belong.
Dr Morgan vacates office in full knowledge that faithful worshippers have left the Church because he has consistently refused to make acceptable provision for anyone who maintains orthodox views.
Consequently many devout women and men have been left with nothing but a spiritual vacuum. That in itself is reprehensible but for it to be inflicted by an Archbishop who believes that only he can be right is outrageous.
Speaking about his desire to see same sex marriages performed in Church, Dr Morgan told the BBC: "I haven't done that on my own. I've done that with the full support of the present bench of bishops and also with the support of the governing body" thus making the bishops complicit and the GB accessories.
What an utter disaster. A Province in the Anglican Communion has been led astray for political purposes. In doing so the Church in Wales has been reduced to little more than an outlet for social services. Addressing an invited congregation at his farewell service Dr Morgan said, "Without the input of churches, fewer food banks would exist, less help would be given to the homeless, the poor and asylum seekers".
Divine worship has become secondary. Without a dramatic volte-face the Church in Wales is doomed.