Why Welby?

Justin Welby, supposedly an evangelical byproduct of big oil and Holy Trinity Brompton – home of the industrial strength evangelism programme, Alpha – is preoccupied with all the things we have come to expect from an Anglicanism that has capitulated to the spirit of the age: homoerotic sex, global warming, wealth redistribution, globalism, transgenderism, lady bishops. You get the idea – all the important stuff.

While the Anglican Communion crumbles around him, Welby has managed to find the time to climb out from under the rubble to declare that Britain’s economy is broken. Are Webly’s extra-curricular obsessions a diversionary tactic? Or perhaps he just can’t face the prospect of following in his predecessor’s footsteps by failing to do his own job and has decided to do someone else’s instead, hoping no one will notice.

Someone has and he is asking: what is the point of the Archbishop of Canterbury?

What IS the point of Archbishop Welby? QUENTIN LETTS questions why the Church of England leader is giving his views on the economy rather than filling emptying pews

The British Social Attitudes survey found the number of people who belong to a religion has for the first time dropped below half of the population.

Only 47 per cent of us now align ourselves with an organised religion and only 15 per cent say we follow the Church of England. Fifteen per cent!

As the U.S. novelist Raymond Chandler nearly said, it’s enough to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained-glass window. If only they would.

Unfortunately, today’s bishops are too wet to be stirred to such action.

As for the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, he only seems interested in issuing Left-wing cliches about Brexit and egalitarianism.

The fundamentals and the mysteries of belief never seem to pass the lips of this outwardly dull ex-oil executive.

Yesterday’s statistics suggest the C of E is in a dire state.

Here is a once mighty civilising influence, an institution which from the time of Henry VIII has helped mould our sense of national identity and the British character.

It has for 500 years helped the poor and spread ideas of mercy and justice. Its Book Of Common Prayer and King James Bibles are wonders of world literature. This most lyrically Protestant of Churches has for half a millennium defined laws and inner horizons on morality and mortality.

Now barely one in six of us admits to being an Anglican and more than half of us set our faces against any organised idea of the spiritual and transcendent.

In other words, when our loved ones die, more than 50 per cent of us stonily refuse to countenance any glimmer of optimism that their souls may have passed elsewhere, and accept some cold, ultra-rationalist view that we humans are no more than a mere bagatelle of skin and gristle, extinguished at death as surely as a guttering candle.

How did Archbishop Welby respond to yesterday’s depressing social attitudes figures?

I wish I could say he met this crisis head-on, saying he understood or disputed the findings. I wish I could tell you he knelt in Trafalgar Square in public penance, or issued a fire-and-brimstone sermon, or told a joke, or issued a blood-curdling curse on all our houses.

Instead, he gave us his views on . . . the economy. He was putting his name to a report by a Blairite think-tank about economic justice and telling us (not that anyone was listening) Britain’s ‘economic model is broken’ and ‘we need to make fundamental choices about the sort of economy we need’.

Oh, and he was writing an opinion article for the Financial Times. That’s really going to bring in the faithful.

The report promoted yesterday by Welby had all the usual buzzwords and phrases of the London centre-Left: social commission . . . gap between rich and poor . . . new vision for the economy . . . zzzzzz.

And so it begins. In the Church of England

From here:

A group of parishes is preparing what could be the first step towards a formal split in the Church of England over issues such as homosexuality, with the creation of a new “shadow synod” vowing to uphold traditional teaching.

Representatives of almost a dozen congregations in the Home Counties are due to gather in a church hall in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, later this week for the first session of what they say could eventually develop into an alternative Anglican church in England.

Organisers, drawn from the conservative evangelical wing of Anglicanism, say they have no immediate plans to break away – but are setting up the “embryonic” structures that could be used to do so if the established church moves further in what they see as a liberal direction.

The new alliance will be viewed as a “church within a church” but founders have not ruled out full separation if, for example, the Church of England offers blessing-style services for same-sex unions – a move expected to be considered by bishops in the next few months.

I have no doubt whatsoever that the Church of England will follow the lead of TEC and the ACoC. Western Anglicanism is in the grip of the dominant principalities and powers of our age and its submission to the rulers of the darkness of this world has been willing, defiant and full of pride – or should I say Pride. The outcome is inevitable.

The life of an ordinary Church of England vicar

It doesn’t usually include kicking police, drinking binges, bomb hoaxes, cannabis, fraud and criminal damage. But, in the case of Rev. Gareth Jones, it does.

Rev. Jones is the vicar (still, according to the website!) at St. Mary’s in Ilford, a parish that claims to be “A place of prayer, dialogue and hospitality” – unless you are a policeman. The parish is Anglo-Catholic, employing the usual trappings of incense, candles and an eastward facing priest at the altar – while he is able to stand, of course. No mention is made of the concentration of cannabis used in the thurible.

If Rev. Jones finds himself without a job – as surely he soon must – he could move to Canada and seek employment with the Anglican Church of Canada; if he pretends to be gay he is almost guaranteed a position.

From the BBC:

The Reverend Gareth Jones swore at officers and claimed he had diplomatic immunity from the Vatican when he was arrested two weeks ago.

A paramedic found him passed out on a street in central London.

Jones, who later said he was “deeply ashamed” about what happened, had drunk three bottles of wine, several pints of beer, gin and tonics and vodka.


As police intervened, the priest from St Mary’s Church in Ilford, east London, kicked an officer in the face, the court was told.

When asked which embassy would grant him diplomatic immunity, the priest said “the Vatican” and swore at officers.

Jones, who has previous convictions for a bomb hoax, affray, possession of cannabis, fraud, and criminal damage, now faces formal church disciplinary proceedings.

Church of England appoints its first nudist woman bishop

It was only last year that the CofE decided to allow women to become bishops and the first lady bishop was consecrated in January of this year. Next February, Karen Gorham will be the first nudist lady bishop in the CofE; if you are going to be relevant, you can’t have too many firsts, can you? I can see her turning up for the ordination complaining that she couldn’t find a thing to wear.

Even if Church of England clergy laboured tirelessly night and day, they really could not make themselves appear more ridiculous than they already do with no apparent effort at all.

From here:

The Church of England has appointed as Bishop of Sherborne a leading advocate of Christian nudism. On 26 Nov 2015 the Prime Minister’s Office announced the The Queen had approved the nomination of the Ven Karen Gorham, the Archdeacon of Buckingham, to the Suffragan See of Sherborne in the diocese of Salisbury in succession to the Rt Rev. Graham Kings.

The new Bishop of Sherborne, who will be consecrated in February at Westminster Abbey, has urged churches to educate their members on naturism, or nudism. “There is need for much education and openness to talk about issues of sexuality, to remove false taboos which we tend to have about our own bodies, and to define the differences between what is impure and what is godly and properly natural to us,” she wrote in “Naturism and Christianity: Are they compatible?”.

Rector on the run

From here:

A Church of England rector who went on the run as he was convicted of pocketing thousands of pounds of fees from funerals and weddings is now feared to have skipped the country, police have revealed.

Interpol is now assisting in the search for the Rev Simon Reynolds, the Rector of Farnham in Surrey amid signs that he has made his way to continental Europe.

Rev Reynolds – alias, Big Bad Desmond – is believed to be holed up in a convent posing as Sister Josephine:

Church of England brings back defrocking

For the last twelve years, there was nothing a Church of England vicar could do to earn expulsion from the priesthood. During that time, like naughty children, many vicars have worked diligently to see just how far they could go before provoking some kind of reaction from above. It seems that paedophilia is the tipping point – as of today, that is; paedophilia is already starting to be viewed as just another orientation, so, in a few years it may receive a generous pastoral response – and paedophile vicars are to lose their licences. In the spirit of diversity, atheist vicars, are still welcome.

From here:

The Church of England is to restore its traditional powers to defrock vicars who break the law, Church leaders said yesterday. (Sun)

The punishment of expulsion from the priesthood – abolished 12 years ago – is to be reinstated as a demonstration of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s determination to stamp out child abuse.

Restoration of the most severe penalty for clergy guilty of sex abuse or other crimes was revealed after the Most Reverend Justin Welby told a survivors group that the Church is ready to launch its own examination of the extent of child sex abuse by priests.

Justin Welby peddles “inclusive capitalism”

I was under the naïve impression that there was nothing left to which the overused to the point of meaninglessness adjective “inclusive” could be applied – but I was wrong.

From here:

The Archbishop of Canterbury today calls on business and market leaders to be less self-serving and to adopt a new model known as “inclusive capitalism”.


“Rather than just seeking a return on investment, there has to be a generosity that reaches out.”

Any model of capitalism that relied solely on self-interest would lead to the collapse of society, he warns, writing in the Telegraph.

“Altruism, the imitation of the God who acts in love that does not seek return, is a crucial part of a stable and functional society.”

To what organisation should we look for inspiration in eschewing financial self-interest and seeking no return on investments? The Church of England, of course:

The Church Commissioners hold investments whose value was approaching £6.7 billion at the end of 2014.


Their long term target is a return of at least RPI [inflation] plus 5% over the long term.

A paradigm of inclusive capitalism: it includes £6.7 billion and 5% return over inflation.

Church of England considering calling God “she”

Over the last ten years the Church of England has lost 4.5 million members whereas the number of Muslims in the UK has increased.

To stem the tide, the CofE is considering doing more of what has already prompted so many to depart: call God “she”:

“Most people think of God as a bearded man in the sky… probably white himself. This is not just a gender discussion,” says Rev Stowell.

“I think if [young people] are seeing people saying that God is not an old, white man in the sky and that God is inclusive of everybody, then that will interest people, especially if they’ve got the idea that Christianity is male, pale and stale.

“If we’re debunking that myth… of course that’s going to bring people to explore faith more.”

Muslims have no plans to similarly self-destruct by calling God “she” and, as yet, the CofE’s inclusivity does not extend to transgendering Satan – insofar as they still believe in her, of course.

Archbishop of Canterbury hosts multi-faith Lambeth schmooze

It should be the beginning of a joke and, in a way, I suppose it is: a Muslim, Jew, Sikh, Hindu, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Jainist and Christian all walk into Lambeth Palace; they look at the Christian and decide he doesn’t belong.

From here:

The Archbishop of Canterbury last night hosted a reception for inter-religious and community leaders at Lambeth Palace.

Speaking at the annual event, which brings together members different faith groups to foster relationships, Archbishop Justin Welby reflected on the theme of reconciliation, which is one of his ministry priorities.

The event was attended by a wide range of people from Muslim, Jewish, Sikh, Hindu, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Jain and Christian traditions.

I can think of a number of reasons why Welby might do this, none of which have anything to do with the hope of converting anyone, least of all the visitors, to Christianity.

The first is to demonstrate the pride with which Western Anglicanism holds firm to the proposition that it doesn’t much matter what anyone believes, so long as we can all get along.

The second is to disabuse those who are under the mistaken impression that the Anglican trinitarian god has three persons named Diversity, Inclusion and Equality; no, the one true Anglican god is now named Reconciliation.

The third is related to the first and second. If Jesus had simply learned to get along with everyone, to reconcile with them, he wouldn’t have ended up on that embarrassing  cross, removing a major stumbling block in our getting along with Muslims, Jews, Sikhs, Hindus, Zoroastrians, Buddhists and Jainists.

Fourth, Justin Welby has finally realised that it is easier to find agreement between Muslims, Jews, Sikhs, Hindus, Zoroastrians, Buddhists and Jainists than between Anglicans.

I write in jest, of course. To be absolutely serious, Welby himself tells us what this was really all about: the need to create a space that is relational:  a convenient void into which one can jettison unwanted relations. What could be clearer than that?

Jihadi John attended an Anglican school

From here:

Arriving in Britain when he was six years old, the Kuwaiti-born extremist appeared to embrace British life, playing football in the affluent streets of West London while supporting Manchester United.

Neighbours recalled a polite, quietly spoken boy who was studious at his Church of England school, where he was the only Muslim pupil in his class.

The real surprise here is that he is a Muslim; I bet no-one saw that coming.

It is reassuring to see that the Church of England school had such a profound influence on his future striving to achieve social justice through missional spirituality in Iraq.

I don’t know about you, but I am sick of seeing photos of Mohammed Emwazi pointing a knife at everyone. So here he is pointing a pork sausage instead:
Jihadi John