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Thursday 30 November 2017

Mad mad mad

Mad -

A notice inviting Canadian elementary school teachers to attend 'LGGBDTTTIQQAAPP' inclusiveness training session (here).

Mad -

Not only can boys who identify as female now become Guides but they will also be allowed to share showers, tents, changing rooms and toilets with girls (here).

Mad -

Anglican minister sparks outrage by urging prayers for Prince George to be gay (here)

How much madder can it get?

Sunday 26 November 2017

Wimmin not listening

ReutersAntje Jackelen, Archbishop of the Church of Sweden, at Uppsala Cathedral                                                                                    Source: Christian Today

The Church of Sweden is opting for gender-neutral language when referring to God, with designators like 'he' and 'Lord' being omitted....'Theologically, for instance, we know that God is beyond our gender determinations, God is not human,' said Archbishop Antje Jackelén, who leads the Church of Sweden. She said the change had been in conversation for decades, as early as 1986. Full report here.

In response Christer Pahlmblad, associate theology professor at Sweden's Lund University, criticsed the move. He told Denmark's Kristeligt Dagblad newspaper that the change undermined 'the doctrine of the Trinity and the community with the other Christian churches'.

Antje Jackelén is not the first female archbishop to ignore the wider church and please herself. The  heretical mentor of the former Archbishop of Wales, Barry Morgan, liked to put her own spin on the Gospel. Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori used 'violent images' for God. She described the Son of God as a Hell's Angel "Gang Leader" and "Party Animal".

Less extreme but also obsessed by secularist feminism in the church, Australia's first female Anglican archbishop, Kay Goldsworthy, would like to see more women in church leadership roles, a constant theme of women bishops in England and Wales.

More women than men are going forward for training for ordination for the first time in more than 15 years according to a recent report, strengthening the view that church ministry is going the same way as primary school teaching where there are few male role models, and primary medicine with Health Centres often staffed by part-time female GPs, a problem which is also affecting hospital care with many female consultants working part-time.

But still the clamour for more women continues regardless of the consequences. As the Guardian headline put it, Amid fight for equality, new bishop of London unlikely to be a woman. The feminist pressure group Women and the Church puts it succinctly as they move towards their true goal after the Church of England was beaten into submission and accepted the ordination of women priests and bishops: Just getting started - working actively for gender justice, equality and inclusion in the Church of England - as if there were no justice, equality or inclusion. Ironically that is just what these feminists are creating leading some to speculate that the Church of England is about to split over theological liberalism.

After her appointment, the second woman bishop in Wales boasted in a BBC interview that Wales was the province in the Anglican Communion with the highest percentage of female bishops before going on with the familiar feminist theme about gender parity, equating equality with sameness.

As if Wales were an example. Their own theological college has closed. Out of the ashes, St Padarn’s Institute, the 'training arm of the Church in Wales' is inviting  all licensed minsters to share what makes them [my emphasis Ed.] flourish and what they struggle with in a series of ‘listening days’ taking place across Wales.

Recent history shows that wimmin issues, not listening, has become the driving force in the Church in Wales. Consultations that have not worked out as the bench of bishop desired were simply ignored. Traditional Anglicanism has been virtually extinguished.

Those churches that are not on the redundant list should not have long to wait as congregations become increasingly elderly. Similarly in England, "Women clergy become the death of the Church of England" as attendance continues to slide.

All are equal in death!

Postscript [27.11.2017]

"Reforming" Church of Sweden looks to Islam:

"It would be foolish to assume that Jackelén's ecclesiastical revolution will end with this victory. On the contrary, there is every reason to believe that her success at Thursday's synod will inspire her to redouble her efforts to transform the Church of Sweden into a more Islam-friendly institution – one that ultimately, at the very least, puts Muhammed on an equal plane with Jesus Christ. No, we cannot know what is really in this woman's heart; but one thing we can be sure of is that when Islam does eventually take over Sweden, her remarkable history of appeasement will not save either her or her Church from a brutal reckoning." Full report here.

Tuesday 21 November 2017

All change at the Cathedral

#RedWednesday, Epstein's Majestas,  Llandaff Cathedral                                                                                                                    Original Source: Cool Places

It is "all change at the Cathedral" according to a Diocesan press release in which the bishop of St Davids announced more appointments at St Davids Cathedral in Pembrokeshire.

The first woman bishop in the Church in Wales followed her own appointment by appointing the first woman Dean of St Davids. She continues her feminizing by appointing another woman to be Canon Treasurer.

Thankfully there will still be a male presence at the holy shrine of the Patron Saint of Wales, Dewi Sant because Bishop Joanna has appointed Canon Leigh Richardson to be the next Canon Residentiary.

From their diocesan website: "The history of the present diocese of St Davids is long and varied. Celtic saints and Welsh princes, mediaeval bishops and Victorian legislators, Reformation scholars and Puritan divines, ascetic monks and Georgian parsons – all have left their mark on an extensive sacred landscape."

But it is all change at the Cathedral. Only now have past 'errors' been realised by the new elite who presumably regard Christ as sexist for not appointing a woman apostle.

Scripture and tradition are being swept away. Just like many faithful Anglicans who have been sacrificed to appease a few vocal feminists and disproportionate numbers of homosexuals who, from the security of the vestry and pews, claim to be excluded from the church. The lights are going out. For many they went out years ago but not in the candle-lit world of their progressive liberal bishops.

Worshippers who attended church twice or three times on a Sunday have shrunk as change has been forced on passive congregations by ambitious clerics led by the likes of Archbishop Barry Morgan and his bench sitters. One wonders what beliefs they hold with no apparent fear of judgement day when they will have to account for their actions which have resulted in losing many as they compromise on sin to satisfy the desires of the few.

Traditionalists are often accused of misogyny but from my own experience more women than men have been driven to the conclusion that their church has left them. Read a Church of England account here.

St Davids is not alone in making changes. I have seen no formal announcement but I understand that the second woman bishop to be appointed in Wales, the bishop of Llandaff, has appointed the former bishop of Monmouth Dominic Walker to be her assistant bishop representing her at confirmation services in parishes which request a male bishop.

Clearly they don't get it. A male bishop whose beliefs resulted in the appointment of women priests and bishops, who stands in, or preferably sits, to confirm dwindling numbers in her place reduces a theological objection to one of sexism.

Similarly in St Davids, the new Canon Residentiary will serve as Sub Dean of the Cathedral, the Dean's assistant with only delegated authority from Dean Sarah. Canon Richardson will be licensed at the Cathedral on 2th February 2018 leaving a considerable gap before the new Dean & Precentor, the Rev'd Canon Dr Sarah Rowland Jones is licensed, collated and installed in the Cathedral on 5th May 2018.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017 is Red Wednesday when we are asked to stand in solidarity with persecuted Christians and all who suffer for their peacefully held beliefs:

"Red is the Christian colour of martyrdom. Christians are the most persecuted faith group in today’s world and #RedWednesday will honour all Christians who suffer and die for their faithfulness to Christ’s message of peace and love."

The campaign calls for respect and tolerance for people of faith and between different faith traditions.

Anglicans who have been effectively excluded from their own church cannot compare their suffering with those we seek to honour tomorrow but many in their own church have suffered for their faith, tragically at the hands of those who were supposed to be their shepherds. Is it any wonder that Anglicanism is dying in England and Wales.

Monday 20 November 2017

BEAM: Help a homeless person to train up and get into work

Homelessness has increased by 34 per cent since the Conservatives came to power in 2010, partly due to benefit cuts and welfare changes PA/Independent

From The Independent: "More than 300,000 people – equivalent to a city the size of Newcastle – are now sleeping rough in Britain after the number of people losing their home soared in the last year, a report has revealed. The study, by housing charity Shelter, found that 307,000, or one in every 200, people are now homeless. Although the figure has risen by 13,000 in the last year alone, Shelter said the partial nature of government data means the real number of homeless people is likely to be even higher."

Shelter has estimated that 8 million people are one pay check away from being unable to pay for their home. Professional people in work are not exempt illustrating how precarious life can be in Britain today.

Seeing people begging on the streets makes many of us feel uncomfortable. It is 2017. We have the Welfare State. There are charities for the homeless. So why? Homeless people describe being hit, kicked, urinated on, and sexually assaulted while living on the street, according to the research from homelessness charity Crisis. Who would choose such a life?

Sadly there are abusers who act as a deterrent. Like the illegal street beggar in one British city earning up to £500 a day despite not being homeless. Consequently, donating to organisations which help vulnerable, homeless people to find shelter is often preferred.

As explained in an Express article, an innovative scheme has been started to help homeless people who lack the necessary skills or resources to get into work.

Welcome to the crowdfunding get-back-to-work campaign, We are BEAM.

The best of British.

Saturday 18 November 2017

View of the lowly from on high

View enjoyed by the Provincial Offices of the Church in Wales                                                                          Source: Twitter

The Provincial Offices of the Church in Wales which 'provide professional assistance to the work of the Governing Body, the Representative Body, the Bench of Bishops and the Bishops’ Advisers' recently moved from their leafy suburban office in Cathedral Road, to a more elevated position in 2 Callaghan Square, Cardiff.

The Archbishop of Wales on high         Twitter
A tweet from D&G Office Interiors has afforded readers the opportunity to enjoy a glimpse of a Church in Wales blue ribbon event at which the Archbishop of Wales, the Most Reverend John D E Davies, took the opportunity to view from on high the more lowly areas of the city where some of the less fortunate in society are accommodated in the Huggard Hostel for the homeless surrounded by those who have become largely indifferent to the church.

But do not be misled. The needy are not forgotten. On the ground, front line workers are taking part in the Cardiff Churches  Nightshelter scheme which provides food and shelter for the homeless over the Christmas season and beyond.

Along with churches from other denominations, the Parish of St German with St Saviour will be providing care for the needy. Details are on the Nightshelter page of their parish website.

Wednesday 15 November 2017

A cabbage by any other name...

A rose?                                                                                  Source: Wikipedia

"A rose by any other name would smell as sweet" wrote William Shakespeare but 'love' as used by progressives in the Church is stinking to high heaven.

No matter how crazy the idea, stamp 'love' on it and anyone disapproving is labeled a bigot.

"Love"                                                             Source: Reuters/Christian Today
The people of Australia are the latest to be persuaded that marriage can be redefined to mean other than joining one man and one women by using 'love' as an umbrella. As their  Prime Minister said "they voted yes for love". Who wouldn't? But that is not the question.

The Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, Anthony Fisher, said he was 'deeply disappointed that the likely result will be legislation to further deconstruct marriage and family in Australia'.

Not so with most of our Anglican bishops in Great Britain who take a more secular view.

Jesus asked Peter three times, "Do you love me?"

That will be all Greek to the bishops so they should know that Éros was not what Christ had in mind when he pressed Peter to understand what tending His flock would entail.

In their latest jaunt into secularism the bishops of the Church of England have issued transphobic bullying guidance. In their logic, bullying must be tackled head on, gender difference can give rise to bullying, therefore "Primary schoolchildren should be free to dress up in a tiara or superhero cloak without comment from teachers or pupils". 

No wonder Stonewall, a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights group, said the guidance gave "clear advice" to teachers on recognising and combating bullying in Church schools.

 The number of children who underwent transgender treatment in the UK's National Health Service jumped by 1,000 percent in the five years to 2016. One would have thought that would cause the bishops some concern. Instead they use this tragic upsurge to bolster their secular agenda.

A question I often hear asked is What has happened to the church? I suspect many readers will know clergy who changed their minds over the ordination of women when they saw which way the wind was blowing. A convenient career choice which put them in the ascendancy to the detriment of those who fought to keep the faith. The Anglican church has gone downhill ever since. Faith and logic no longer apply.

Monday 13 November 2017

Welsh bishops relegate unity

The bishops of St Davids, St Asaph, Llandaff, Swansea and Brecon (archbishop), Bangor, and Monmouth having a laugh          Source: Premier Christian Radio

The Church in Wales has placed an advert in the Church Times for a Director of Faith, Order and Unity. 

This looks suspiciously like an empire building re-jig of an advert which resulted in the 2014 appointment of a WCC staff member to the post of Unity, Faith and Order Director for the Anglican Communion while relegating unity to third place.

No surprise there since the Church in Wales slammed the door on any hope of church unity in the conventional sense many years ago when Barry and his bench sitters chose to ignore most of Christendom and apply their own version of faith and order by choosing instead an alliance with Nonconformist churches, thus causing further disunity within the Anglican Communion and beyond.

The Church in Wales already has its own Doctrinal Commission to tell its bishops what they want to hear. They also have their own version of unity - being a 'big' fish in a very small pond. As there is no hope of unity with the much larger Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches there should be little for the successful applicant to do unless the object of the role is to continue re-interpreting the Gospel to promote gender equality and parity in place of suitability, the main thrust of the newly enthroned women bishops.

At the last meeting of Governing Body of the Church in Wales, the new Archbishop John Davies promised ‘more of the same’ — but faster! The Scottish Episcopal Church is following suit with the recently appointed first female bishop indicating that her first priority is to see the election of more women for high-profile roles. Their General Synod has already agreed to permit same-sex marriage.

As for the Church of England, they are still trying to work out what they believe with their 'Shared Conversations on Scripture, Mission and Sexuality' (here) while preaching a message that is contrary to Christian belief based on scripture.

Given the continually shrinking regular attendance figures at Church in Wales Sunday services (28,291 and shrinking) one has to wonder what the bishops  do these days. The latest figures show confirmations fell by 21% between 2015-2016  to 872.

Much of their time has been diverted towards the propagation of feminism and, contrary to scripture, formerly establishing homosexuality in the church as the expression of God's love, a situation neatly summed up on BBC Radio 4 [@18.01] when Ed Stourton speaks with Lorna Ashworth, a highly regarded evangelical, who has resigned her place in General Synod and the Archbishops’ Council over the issue, and Jayne Ozanne who "campaigns for gay equality within the Church of England and the wider evangelical community" using our need to love one another as her passport to acceptance of deviating from the Gospel.

The Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, who jointly oversees both the general synod and the Archbishops' Council alongside the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, said he was 'sad' Lorna Ashworth had resigned. He added, "However, I do not share her doubts that the Church of England will be part of God's renewal of the Christian faith in this nation" indicating the problem faced by Lorna Ashworth and those of us who share her concern for the Christian faith in this country.

Empire building in a declining church appears to be high on the list of priorities for the bench of bishops even though the Church in Wales Review recommended a reduction in the number of dioceses and the associated administrative costs.

From Section 15 of the Review:

"...there is a widespread sense across the church that the Church in Wales is top heavy, with too many committees and too much time spent on simply keeping the institution going as it is."

The problem for the Anglican Church is that most of the bishops in Great Britain are so busy trying to satisfy the desires of the flesh that they are blind to the needs of the spirit. As a consequence they are fishing for minorities while many of the faithful feel excluded from an organisation that has lost the Way and the truth and the life. They leave and giving goes down creating the current crisis.

Saturday 11 November 2017

Remembrance Day 2017

December 19, 1916: A French officer stands near a cemetery filled with recent graves of soldiers
killed on the front lines of World War One, at Saint-Jean-sur-Tourbe on the Champagne front,
eastern France REUTERS/Collection Odette Carrez/IBTimes

A mother plans to be reunited with her only son. Source: GETTY/Express

We will remember them

Wednesday 8 November 2017

Newspeaking of love

George Orwell  statue unveiled outside BBC Broadcasting House                                                                                                                    Source: Telegraph

The First Minister of Scotland sounded utterly convinced that only her views could possibly be correct when offering her "unequivocal" apology to gay men convicted of sexual offences that are no longer illegal.

She said "the simple fact was that parliamentarians in Scotland had, over many decades, supported or at least accepted laws which "we now recognise to have been completely unjust... Hundreds of people in Scotland were liable to be convicted as criminals, simply for loving another adult."

If Ms Sturgeon feels secure enough to condemn previous law makers as in error, why did she twist the facts? She was correct only in that it took law makers in Scotland more than a decade to catch up with reforms to the law in England and Wales in 1976.

My understanding of the legislation to which she objected was that convictions were not for loving another adult but for buggery. The law was changed after the Wolfenden report recommended that "homosexual behaviour between consenting adults in private should no longer be a criminal offence".

The Civil Partnership Act 2004 granted civil partnerships rights and responsibilities in the United Kingdom very similar to civil marriage. A reform welcomed across the political spectrum but not good enough for activists who demand that marriage be redefined in the name of supposed equality.

The LGBT lobby has had considerable success with newspeak. Constant repetition of the words 'love' and 'equality' in relation to same sex marriage has provided a smokescreen to achieve an objective which undermines the basis of family live, the joining together of a man and a woman for the procreation of children without which civilisation as we know it would end.

But what about infertile couples? they claim, before advocating adoption by gay couples, the use of surrogates and more recently, womb transplants allowing men to have babies. There is little if any thought for the effects in later life on the children resulting from such unions.

Gay couples can live together in circumstances similar to civil marriage without fear of prosecution but acceptance has turned into demands. Now the tail wags the dog. Even Anglican bishops are content to demean the sanctity of marriage by agreeing to legitimise that which is contrary to Christian teaching.

The First Minister's misuse of the word love was a precursor to linking same sex marriage with equality, condemning supporters of traditional marriage as lacking integrity, wisdom, compassion and justice using words such as wrong, homophobia, hate, fear, discrimination, prejudice and bigotry, the implication being that opponents of same sex marriage are bigoted, prejudiced people who lack compassion and a sense of justice.

There is no justice in condemning people simply for having an opposing view. In years to come as the Church crumbles and society further disintegrates, another First Minister could be standing in Ms Sturgeon's place condemning others for supporting or at least accepting laws which "we now recognise" to have been completely stupid.

Sunday 5 November 2017

The irony of it

Metropolitan Bishoy and Bishop Gregory Cameron sign the Agreed Statement on the Procession and Work of the Holy Spirit during a special evensong
service in Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin.  Christian Today / Lynn Glanville / Dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough 

Taking timeout from the advancement of all matters  LBGTI+ in the Church in Wales, the Bishop of St Asaph has been involved in matters spiritual, a hangover from his years in the Church of England.

Appointed Director of Ecumenical Affairs at the Anglican Communion Office in 2003, he became Deputy Secretary General of the Anglican Communion in 2004. He was elected as the 76th Bishop of St Asaph in 2009.

Unsurprisingly the report 'Anglicans and Oriental Orthodox agree on doctrine of Holy Spirit' appears not on the Church in Wales website but in Christian Today .

The controversy dates back to the 7th century, when Eastern theologians objected to the statement the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father 'and the Son' ('filioque'). Anglicans inherited this reading from the Roman Catholic Church. Agreed Statement here.

 One might have thought that resolving this impediment to Christian unity would have merited at least a mention but the Church in Wales abandoned matters spiritual in favour of politics long ago under their previous archbishop

Many of the faithful who would have appreciated this agreement have also been abandoned by the Church in Wales which may explain why Church in Wales reports are dominated by the advancement of feminism, homosexuality and same sex marriage.

This report shows what might have been before the bench of bishops and, indeed, the house of bishops in the Church of England opted for deviancy over unity.

Thursday 2 November 2017

The fall of the flag

History restored at the Hundred Stone!                                                                                                                    Source: Church in Wales/Picture: Alison Evans

The symbolism says it all in this Diocesan press release, 'History restored at the Hundred Stone'. The Cross of St David lying in the dirt.

Historically the fall of the flag meant defeat. It could be a metaphor for the Church in Wales.