From the Sydney Morning Herald:
The Church of England has refused to deny that its most senior bishops held secret discussions with their Vatican counterparts this weekend in
an historic union to topple the controversial Anglican push to admit gay unions and the ordination of women bishops.
In an unprecedented turn of events, a handful of Pope Benedict XVI’s most trusted advisers are believed to have met senior Anglican Bishops in York over the weekend to build closer inter-church ties – and to stymie the liberalisation of significant traditions.
You almost have to pity these ancient, crumbling institutions and their equally ancient & crumbling custodians. Such is the unthinkable threat of The Gays & women preaching Jesus’ alleged message of tolerance & understanding & fraternity that Roman Empire & the Anglicans (formed in frustration by King Henry VIII so he could get a sodding divorce) are holding secret meetings to discuss strategies for shoring up their age-old dogma and biblical bigotry.
The meetings, reported by Anglican websites and London’s Telegraph, suggest that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, was not informed of the talks.
One has to wonder why they kept the Arch in the dark though. Maybe he’s too liberal for these frock-wearers.
Bitter opponents have been demanding concessions and more than 500 members of the clergy have already warned Dr Williams that they will consider abandoning the Church unless havens within the Church free of women bishops are created for them.
Three diocesan bishops have written to the archbishop in support of the threat while another two said they are prepared to jettison the Church altogether. The letter from the Bishops of Chichester, Blackburn and Europe reportedly argue that traditionalist clergy will be incapable of maintaining an “honoured place” in the Church without such legislation.
So, basically, let us continue to wallow in our privileged positions, free of any requirement to tolerate such abominations as women bishops, or gay cardinals, or gays getting married, or, basically, practicing what they bloody well preach. Paedophiles though, that’s fine. Plenty of room for nonces!
This kind of thing makes me wonder why the fucking hell any self-respecting woman or gay person would even want to join such a reprehensible old boys’ club, let alone rise to a position of authority. Regardless of the fact that I think the bible’s cobbled together from numerous old legends and has been used more as a combined threat/bribe to control the political allegiances of the ignorant than as a spiritual guide for 1500 years (more or less), I cannot help but wonder why anyone devoted to serving their saviour & glorifying their god would desire to do so within an organisation – two organisations – that are defiant about keeping them out and are going to great lengths to do so. If you’re so keen on Jesus why would you fight tooth & nail to join an organisation that doesn’t want you in it and will use the alleged words of Jesus’ father to keep you out? Because you can? To bust the holy glass ceiling? To prove a point? To what end? Start your own freaking church if Jesus means that much to you! Why play in a sandpit that’s controlled by bullies when you can go and dig your own and make your own rules? Bah, humbug.
Anyway (breathe). What this illustrates to me, aside from the obvious points about high-level religion being dominated by bigoted old men who will not give up (or even share) the reins without a fight (like most of the world’s lucrative industries), is that the Christian bible (possibly more than other religious texts), far from being the objective truth of god, can be interpreted in any subjective way by anybody to make any kind of point and justify any kind of discriminatory behaviour. On one hand we have liberal bishops & rooks & other assorted chess pieces saying “Sure, let everyone in! Ever-loving Jesus would have wanted it that way, the big cuddly ol‘ hippie,” and on the other we have the usual suspects saying “Aw hell no, the Bible says women are only for looking at and breeding with and gays are to kept in boxes until someone needs some snappy choreography, a manly yet stylish make-over or a good ol‘ chuckle at their campy mannerisms. And for stoning to death.” The mere fact that there’s a difference between Anglicans & Catholics in the first place, and that the Church of England was instituted because of King Henry’s disagreement over Vatican rules, shows me in stark glaring detail that the Bible, far from being The One Source Of Truth And Morality And Everything, is just a giant, confused, often contradictory smorgasbord of ideas that can have as many different interpretations as it can readers. One would think that if the creator of the universe wanted his billions of petri-dish swellers to glorify his name with their every respiration, ejaculation, micturation & defecation that he would’ve given us all the same, clear-cut and unambiguous instructions. No, instead we have dozens of different ones all drawn from the same book – just in Christianity alone too, there are countless billions who don’t even believe Jesus existed in the first place, let alone was the only son of God – and some of us continue to fight tooth & nail to defend our particular, blinkered version of the “truth”.
What would Jesus do?