Thursday 18 November 2010

Covenant on Midweek

Lord Melvin Blagg: Welcomb to Gumbria in Gockermouth, sorry Gockermouth in Gumbria (I don't know why I get dose de wrong way around) here in de Lake Distric. For Midweek Talk this morning we are discussing firstly matters of Anglican disagreement, and later on we'll have our arts review, our round of book reviews and intellectual approaches to watching films. I have with me Reverend Virginia Lake, who will describe herself shortly, a Bishop Harold Wilson at the centre of a disagreement of opinion as we shall see, and the more well known figures of the Most Reverend Rowanov Dreedri, Archbishop of England, and de Most Reverend John Sendmehome, Archbishop of de North. Now apparently two good colleagues Rowanov Dreedri and Harold Wilson have fallen out with each other, and John Sendmehome is friendly with both, and Reverend Virginia Lake is going to help mediate with the help of John Sendmehome. But dey are here wiv me now. Virginia - tell me about your background first.

Virginia Lake: I am the Director of the Anglican Confrontation Organisation called Unity Faith and Order that operates under SHADO - the 'Secretive Hierarchical Anglican Doctrinal Organisation'. I operate underneath Lambeth Palace and Rowanov Treetri carries the operational name Commander Straker, as he is the 'Ed Bishop.

Melvin Blagg: Not very zecretive den.

Virginia Lake: Well everyone knows about it. The secret part, as with all Anglicanism, is in the actual rule book as opposed to the formal rule book; it's an acquired taste, what you find out after joining. It's part of the Sense Inference Detector, or SID.

Melvin Blagg: So what is du dispute about den?

Virginia Lake: To cut a lot of representational conversations short, the upshot is that Harold Wilson here wants the UFO to be renamed DMC; indeed he thinks John Sendmehome could Run DMC.

Melvin Blagg: DMC sdands for?

Virginia Lake: It would stand for...

Harold Wilson: Disunity, Mistrust and Chaos.

Virginia Lake: Bishop Harold Wilson seems to have, in effect, broken ranks. From a stance of initially asking questions, he is turning into episcopal opposition. He has raised an objection, one bishop among others. This is unusual, as the House of Bishops tries to show collective responsibility by demonstrating that all of them agree.

John Sendmehome: Gimme de Covenant, it is what we want; give it to us hard and straight, as it's on the communin' plate; and yeah we know what it's for, keep it just like with clause four. Walk this way, walk this way.

Melvyn Blagg: Bishop Wilson?

Harold Wilson: [Puffs on his pipe several times] I think the Covenant will not lead to Unity, Faith and Order, but Disunity, Mistrust and Chaos.

Rowanov Treetri: I have to say, without engaging Bishop Harold directly, that I did not think that after so many stages of being able to pass the Covenant through several passage points as part of the Windsor Process that people would be other than perhaps worn down and forgetful; but it would seem that possibly the necessity of it going through Synod on it is called the nod so to speak might be lost and replaced by a more active conversation that is prior to letting the dioceses discuss and approve it and put pressure upon the General Synod later to pass it as it had been passed all the way down the line including among the dioceses and for it to slip along to its final approval here as it has done here before and might elsewhere in the Anglican Communion. And whilst one might pray for the participation of interest groups to be toned down somewhat, in preferring a larger prayer for the Anglican Communion, I do think that one of the bishops starting to be so obviously public in this manner is a matter of intense disloyalty to my tenure of office, if I may put it in that manner.

Virginia Lake: I really do wish people would read the text. It is ever so gentle, and just the sort of thing we need for mediation. Is it not to enhance relationships, to bring together those who can agree to participate in what is a process approach to disagreement, in holding to inaction during the ongoing conversation where we can get together?

Rowanov Treetri: Indeed arguably I designed it for patience, so that one culture that might go ahead with a process might wait for another culture to thoroughly change before it goes ahead so that all can move together under the auspices of the Unity, Faith and Order office, as guided by the representative Standing Committee and the importance of united bishops.

Melvyn Blagg: Bishop?

Harold Wilson: [Pauses while puffing on his pipe]

Melvyn Blagg: Bishop, dis is radio.

Harold Wilson: There has never been a Brighton Conference about this, or any other conference; in the only consultation there has ever been, an online poll that fanatics can click several times, four times as many voted as normally do, with 86% against. This must count for something. Although lots of people are posturing in favour of this Covenant, I cannot find anyone who agrees with it.

Rowanov Treetri: But in formal terms the bishops are united, and surely this counts for far more.

Harold Wilson: We appear to be united. Now that I have apparently broken ranks, you don't want to talk to me. You want to freeze me out. You are taking sanctions.

Rowanov Treetri: There must be relational consequences.

John Sendmehome: My father told me never to talk to strangers. We haven't spoken since. Hey, let's get more rhythm. Me and the Archbish, we the Treacherous Two, I come with drums and him his thoughts, we make a Hullabaloo; he give them thoughts, an' mine are so naff, he puzzles everyone, an' I make 'em laugh. He's not that old, but he looks that way, he's just like Grandfather Flash, But when it comes to the Anglican way, it's just like car crash smash. Walk this way, walk this way.

Melvyn Blagg: Right. What is du solution?

Virginia Lake: I'll make an official point as produced by my office. These may not represent my own views. In enhancing the relationships between those who slowly and patiently hide their disagreements into the process, those that disagree more openly like Bishop Wilson will not lose their entitlements as bishops but rather become part of the newer, layered, more pluriform gathering, where they are clearly on the outer ring, do not any longer represent the bishops - for example in ecumenical representations - and thus as restricted retain the essential unity of the core bishops.

Rowanov Treetri: Of course I would not desist from this view myself, and equally this is my official self as opposed to my private self which I do in fact now habitually conceal when in the public arena. We recently lost five bishops...

John Sendmehome: Hey they were known as the Furious Five. Walk this way, walk this way.

Rowanov Treetri: And we would not wish to lose any more if we can help it, and so the need to redesign a more restrained, restricted, ecumenically representative Catholicism. Reverend Lake: the minimum required is the bishop's tacitly inactive disagreement.

Virginia Lake: Bishop, could you do this?

Harold Wilson: [Pauses while puffing his pipe] I could add this into the conversation.

Melvyn Blagg: Would dis do it?

Rowanov Treetri: This could indeed do.

Virginia Lake: This indeed shouldn't be an impossibility. Well what a victory for the Covenant. We do have your tacit silence bishop?

Harold Wilson: I add no further comment.

Melvyn Blagg: Well I must say dis is du first time in my experience dat a radio discussion has had a useful burpose. But now some book reviews. What have you been reading, Virginia Lake?

Virginia Lake: The Archbishop's excellent book on Dostoyevsky.

Melvyn Blagg: Rowanov's, of gourse.

John Sendmehome: Hey man, I'll stick to Dusty Springfield, and er Run DMC. Sorry, Run UFO. Well, she runs UFO. Good idea, man.

No comments: