The General Synod of the Church of England was so shocking. Here’s why

Jul 13, 2017 by

by David Baker, Christian Today:

I am still shocked by General Synod.

I thought a few days of quiet reflection before writing anything might make a difference.

After all, it’s so easy to rush to be critical. And whatever else might be said about them, members of the Church of England’s ruling body – the General Synod – give up a lot of time and energy in order to take part in it. They even meet in the middle of the Wimbledon tennis fortnight, which must surely count as some gently Anglican form of martyrdom.

But a few days have gone past now since the latest synod finished, and to be honest I still feel really quite shocked.

It’s not that there aren’t some good things to welcome, of course. It’s great that the church wants to be explicit in its welcome of people who class themselves as transgender. After all, Jesus is for everyone. And it’s also good to distance ourselves from anything in terms of counselling which is ethically dubious. Many in the Christian world have heard horrific stories about faith-shatteringly bad ‘counselling’.

So why, then, do I feel rather bleak? The answer is simple: the apparent absence at synod of real theology – in other words, the ability to reflect on complex issues with calmness, depth and clarity from an explicitly Christian perspective.

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