Thursday, November 22, 2012

In defence of the CofE’s House of Laity

From The Spectator-

Even friends of an Established church like myself – though I’m a Catholic – should think twice about the wisdom of the idea after the naked political interference in the affairs of the CofE in the Commons. The Speaker, who is non-religious/agnostic, was among the most overt in encouraging MPs to overturn the church’s decision not to approve women bishops. Perhaps, he suggested, they might like to refer the matter to the Equalities Minister (Maria Miller)? It was more or less to say that the equalities legislation should be brought to bear on the CofE when it comes to its way of appointing bishops. Ben Bradshaw too was all in favour of parliament getting involved. So was Chris Bryant, who is not only an ex-Anglican vicar, but by his own account an ex-Christian.

But there were a few actual practising Anglicans among the politicians who couldn’t wait to tell the Church what to do. The Prime Minister was, of course, one. ‘The Church should get with the programme,’ he declared, which pretty well ran counter to most of Christ’s teachings about fitting in with the world. But he did have a point in saying that ‘we should give them a prod’ – yep, as a communicant Anglican he could indeed have got involved in the House of Laity and played a part in the vote, or if otherwise engaged, got his mother to.

More here-

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