Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Anglican iron lady

From New Zealand-

She polarises and perplexes as many as she charms. PHILIP MATTHEWS meets Christchurch's Iron Lady.

Is this the monster? If you were to believe the worst of everything you ever heard and read about Victoria Matthews, Anglican Bishop of Christchurch, you would expect to meet a terse and autocratic figure, dismissive of contrary opinions and impatient with the public.

In person, Matthews is none of those things. Instead, she is charm itself. She is funny, unpretentious and refreshingly direct. Perhaps it is her tendency to be direct and certain that has got her into trouble. Her easy sense of humour may not always come across either.

Not every reputation squares with reality, of course. But how did this relationship go so wrong?

A year on from the worst of it, Matthews reflects on the vilification that she went through as one of the "lightning rods" for Christchurch anger.

"It's been a time of raw emotions right across the city," she says. "I keep saying it, but I still believe it: You can't get angry at an earthquake. It's just not satisfying. I know that people have been shaking their fists at the heavens since time immemorial but you can't kick God and you can't kick an earthquake. You can weep and you can shout, but you're more likely to focus on a human being and so I've become one of the lightning rods, and along with that has come a number of accusations. And it's actually become quite personal."

More here-

1 comment:

Leonard Clark said...

No, Bishop Victoria is correct, ¨you can't get angry with a earthquake¨ but you CAN, and should, get angry with someones who insists, demands that the Anglican Covenant be viewed with great imagination...+Victoria Matthews divides (and attempts to do it in other Anglican Provinces too)...she ought take the road of her coheckler of LGBT people, Rowan Williams and find a nice University to attempt to guide.