Saturday, 26 January 2013


Andrew Brown asks How can faith bodies provide welfare when their own cupboards are bare?

Andrew Goddard writes for the Church of England Newspaper about The legacy of Rowan Williams to the Church of England.

Christopher Howse writes in his Sacred Mysteries column in The Telegraph about When ravens beat their black image.

Posted by Peter Owen on Saturday, 26 January 2013 at 11:00am GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Opinion

"Simon Barrow of Ekklesia, who argues that churches are being used to conceal and collaborate with the government's attacks on the poor and vulnerable. Churches should not just be working to relieve suffering, but to promote justice..."

This is a discussion we have frequently in our Outreach Committee meetings at our parish. To do "acts of charity" vs. addressing the root causes of injustice and advocating for the poor. A priest or bishop in Central or South America said "When I feed the hungry they call me a saint; when I ask why they're hungry, they call me a socialist.

We're in a downtown parish and do a lot of outreach to the homeless. The partner organizations do work on advocacy, and TEC has a whole lobbying group. I'm circumspect about our little parishes ability to move the dial, though I'm grateful to those who try. So my focus tends to be to respond to the needy at our very doorsteps.

It's an interesting question. I wonder if CoE, as the established church can make a stronger dent?

Posted by: Cynthia on Saturday, 26 January 2013 at 6:10pm GMT

I disagree with Andrew Goddard that Rowan prevented splits in the Anglican Communion. To me it seemed that for him, "unity" meant going along with human rights abuses in Uganda. I don't care what he said about that, what matters is that he was isolating us in TEC to pressure us to be in alignment with that mentality. For Americans, that horse left the barn, decades ago for women, and a decade ago on LGBT persons. The idea that TEC (and Canada, and others) were supposed to throw their people under a bus to appease human rights abusers is the legacy of Rowan in my mind. Given his shabby treatment of our PB +Schori and +Gene Robinson, I think that mark is absolutely indelible.

I'm glad he spoke up for the vulnerable in the UK. And Indaba does look promising.

The best way to keep the Anglican Communion together (as best as possible), is to make it absolutely clear that NO ONE, including the ABC, actually has any real power what-so-ever over other provinces. Any effort to use coercion (as Rowan did) will be viewed as unacceptable colonialism. There's no way TEC is turning back the clock. The example the CoE has set recently on both women and LGBT people removes any credibility to dictate anything to the rest of the Anglican Communion.

I wish the new ABC all the best with all the problems he's inheriting. I would love to see him sort out problems at home in a way that is exemplary to the rest of the Communion. It would be great to see CoE take a lead in justice, compassion, and mercy, rather than be dragged along by Parliament and secular society. I am rooting for success in spreading God's radical love to all people.

Posted by: Cynthia on Saturday, 26 January 2013 at 6:33pm GMT

[Disclaimer: Yank insider remarks follow! JCF]

"When ravens beat their black image"

Speaking as a faithful of the City of St Francis, I can think one *particular* set of Ravens which, next Sunday, are again getting BEAT---GO NINERS! ;-D

Posted by: JCF on Saturday, 26 January 2013 at 8:58pm GMT

Saint Oswald, King of Northumbria did, of course, have a pet raven as his constant companion.
Let us all hope that the wing-clipped ravens never leave the Tower of London - otherwise England, along with its Established Church would fall.

Posted by: Father David on Saturday, 26 January 2013 at 11:25pm GMT

Poor Rowan. He inherited a mess,and with all the goodwill in the world, made it worse. We wish him God speed, but many of us in TEC will remember how he treated us; and many of us who are LGBT Christians will remember that he withheld comfort and hope in the name of Anglican unity, and seemed to go along with all the dreadful things said and moved against us without a word of protest.

Unity without justice or hope is worthless.

But go in peace.

Posted by: Nat on Saturday, 26 January 2013 at 11:48pm GMT

@ Cynthia, "The idea that TEC (and Canada, and others) were supposed to throw their people under a bus to appease human rights abusers is the legacy of Rowan in my mind. Given his shabby treatment of our PB +Schori and +Gene Robinson, I think that mark is absolutely indelible."

Cynthia is on the money. +Williams reminds me of a an automotive engineer who never learned to navigate cross town traffic. The ABC, from a Canadian perspective, is a figure head with "moral" authority. The new kid on the block will have to work hard to get some of that authority back.

Posted by: Rod Gillis on Sunday, 27 January 2013 at 2:24am GMT

The Anglican Communion is a family of independent churches. Nothing more.

Dr. Williams wanted it to be more. That was a major strategic mistake.

I think he wanted to get all his "sheep" in the same doctrinal fold, in order to facilitate ecumenism.

He seems to have regarded other, independent churches within the Communion as problems to be solved, or as means to a larger end.

Posted by: Jeremy on Sunday, 27 January 2013 at 1:18pm GMT

Now that we have the amazing & heartening spectacle of Mr Rupert Murdoch apologising, may we also hope that Lord Williams will apologise publicly to the gay Anglicans whose lives he put at risk in Africa?

Posted by: Commentator on Tuesday, 29 January 2013 at 8:40am GMT

"When ravens beat their black image" and also beat the San Francisco 49ers in the Superbowl Sunday night .....

Could the 49ers win? Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore".

As to Rowan, he failed in his position as ABC by trying to appease all, and above all, failing to lead at all, for better or ill. The wrong man for the job. Enabler of bigotry.

Posted by: Roger on Wednesday, 30 January 2013 at 12:33am GMT
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