Church in revolt

Aug 4, 2017 by

by Peter Mullen, Church of England Newspaper:

Last week a letter from twenty-three prominent Anglican clergymen, including a former Chaplain to the Queen Rev’d Dr Gavin Ashenden, was published in the Daily Telegraph. The letter warned that unless there is a change of direction, the Archbishop of Canterbury will face “a revolt in the form of an independence movement.” Dr Ashenden added:

“This is a warning: the Archbishop is under notice that unless he leads the Church in a way that remains consistent with the values and authority of the Bible as opposed to progressive secularism, he will risk some kind of revolt in the form of an independence movement.”

Elsewhere in national newspapers and the broadcast media there are reports that members of the Church of England, clerical and lay, are engaged in “culture wars” featuring traditionalists against modernisers, principally about the church’s teaching on sexual morality and particularly over whether homosexual “marriages” are to be solemnised in churches.

But the newspapers and the radio and TV commentators have got it wrong. The culture wars are over and the modernisers have won because they can call on the support of every secular institution and organisation in the country – the government, schools, universities, business leaders, the armed forces and, of course, the mass media themselves. For the fact is that everyone in Britain today except “a very few Christians who remain faithful to biblical teaching” – or, if you prefer, “a hidebound clique of fundamentalists, reactionaries and nutcases” – now believes that homosexual “marriage” is permissible, desirable and the moral equivalent of marriage.

The matter goes much further: on every aspect of social morality the modernisers in the church are on the same side as the non-churchgoing, secular majority. The values of the secularists and the modernising churchmen – Equality, Diversity and Multiculturalism – are identical. Of course, these values are secular, but that doesn’t hinder the modern church-people in their acceptance of them. In the eyes of the ecclesiastical modernisers, secular, so-called British values are the same as Christian values. And these modernisers or, as they are usually and mistakenly called, “liberals” – mistakenly, because they are anything but liberal – simply cannot for the life of them see how traditional Christians can take a different view. But it doesn’t matter. Culture wars have been raging in this country and throughout Europe and the USA for decades. But the culture wars are now over. The traditionalists have lost and the counter culture is the culture now.

So what will happen next? Either the traditionalists will abandon their biblically-based ethical beliefs and capitulate to the new modernised establishment – which I do not think likely – or, as Dr Ashenden said, there will be some sort of revolt out of which will emerge an independence movement. The leaders of Archbishop Welby’s modernised church will notice that the independence movement is tiny in numbers and influence and they will be confident that they can ignore it.

Moreover, the victory of the new, secularised church, devoted to those three false gods Diversity, Equality and Multi-culti is hollow. With each succeeding step taken by the modernisers, over the last fifty years, towards identifying with the values of our secular, politically-correct new establishment, they have abandoned a little bit more of authentic Christianity. And now at this late stage, there is barely a vestige of the Christian faith to be found in the new and thoroughly progressed C. of E. And despite all the gimmicks – from Call to the North to Messy Church and Pokemon-in-Church – the congregations have declined relentlessly. It’s not hard to see why this should be so: if the church now believes only what the secular state believes, why should anyone bother turning up in the pews on a Sunday morning?

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