Through only an official, and by only an email, Archbishop Rowan Williams stoops even lower in his already well diminished stature as leader of the Canterbury Communion, in refusing Bishop Gene Robinson the exercise of presiding at the Eucharist and even preaching. Mad Priest via Mary Clara at Putney had the report on this, and then The Lead as part of Episcopal Cafe, and Dave Walker points out that an Archbishop cannot prevent someone from preaching. Nevertheless, as the Thinking Anglicans headline has it, Gene Robinson is showing respect for the Archbishop in a completely non-reciprocal fashion which does Gene Robinson nothing but credit. Once again the Archbishop promotes the religious bureaucracy, and hides behind the shabby all-knowing, all-powerful, all-omnipresent The Windsor Report and all else that is dragged along with it - that surely contradicts its own listening process when the man he isolates supposedly cannot even talk within the context of preaching the gospel.
In all this the trees keep being counted but the wood goes unnoticed. What is this most like? The shabbiness and failing of the Roman Empire from within? The Roman Church before Luther? It is surely an institution going rotten from within. Afraid of the protestations of some, who will go off and form their own association anyway, the ongoin double-dealing will not treat Akinola (questions to ask about violence, a boundary-crosser), Malango (dismissed the ability of a court to try Kunonga for incitement to murder), and Orombi, Kolini, Nzimbi and, recently, the most spectacular Venables (all for boundary crossing), in anything like as equivalent to that isolation given to an honest man.
Thus Christianity has been distorted, perverted, and turned on its head, all in the cause of a religious bureaucracy locked in fear and warped in confession. "Above all, pray for the Lambeth Conference," says the Archbishop. Better bishops?
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