Posted by Christopher Johnson | Thursday, May 26th, 2011 | Uncategorized | 18 Comments

I know that Dead Gay Guys have absolute moral authority these days but I have to admit, yo, that I don’t believe a single word of this Andrew Brown Guardian story:

A meeting of Church of England bishops in York this week has broken up without agreement on whether gay clergy should ever be allowed to be chosen for promotion to bishoprics.

The leadership of the established church remains tied in knots over how far it can comply with the Equality Act in its treatment of gay people. Church lawyers have told the bishops that while they cannot take into account that someone is homosexual in considering them for preferment, they also cannot put forward clergy in active same-sex relationships and, even if they are celibate, must consider whether they can “act as a focus for unity” to their flocks if appointed to a diocese.

The fraught divisions have been laid bare in the leak of an anguished and devastating memorandum written by the Very Rev Colin Slee, the former dean of Southwark Cathedral, shortly before his death from pancreatic cancer last November. Dr Rowan Williams, the archbishop of Canterbury, and John Sentamu, the archbishop of York, vetoed candidates from becoming bishops of the south London diocese.

The document reveals shouting matches and arm-twisting by the archbishops to keep out the diocese’s preferred choices as bishop: Jeffrey John, the gay dean of St Albans, and Nicholas Holtam, rector of St Martin-in-the-Fields in central London, whose wife was divorced many years ago. Eventually Christopher Chessun, then an assistant bishop, was chosen.

Slee described Williams shouting and losing his temper in last year’s Southwark meeting, which left several members of the crown nomination committee, responsible for the selection of bishops, in tears.

“The archbishop of Canterbury was bad tempered throughout. When it came to voting, certainly two – possibly three – members were in tears and [Williams] made no acknowledgement but carried on regardless. At a critical point Archbishop Sentamu and three other members simultaneously went to the lavatory, after which the voting patterns changed.”

Rowan Williams made somebody cry and didn’t acknowledge it.  Right.  Me dating Pippa Middleton would be a more plausible statement, Andy.  Slee’s family basically accused Dr. Williams of killing him.

In a covering letter seen by the Guardian, Slee’s eldest daughter, Ruth, says: “Both my mother and I feel [his] hurt and anger were contributory to the cancer from which he died … this association is borne out by the medical timescale of his illness, but will never be known.”

Yeah, whatever.

18 Comments to DIGGERS

May 26, 2011

My reaction was the same, Christopher.

There may be some truth somewhere in this, but like the little boy who called wolf, Andrew Brown has a credibility problem. Anything relevant from the HOB meeting is overlaid by what looks like a liberal spoiler, in which Slee’s family are involved. It is extraordinary that Slee [who was a bully, but not gay, so far as anyone knows] reaches out from the grave to continue to make trouble, using others. He really should now lie down and rest in peace.

May 26, 2011

Given the overwhelming reality of the consequences of VGR to the EcUSA and AC, perhaps one might interpret this to mean that the ABC et alia have actually learned that such an course is aberrant and destructive?

One can hope.

On the other hand, death comes to all with and without disappointments. That disappointment speeds death may be true but pancreatic cancer is notoriously rapid in its natural history and I medically doubt the alleged relation in this particular instance. I have known individuals dead within six weeks of diagnosis regardless of their disappointment indices.

May 26, 2011

This year is Bishop Fireball Watts. I bin knowin’ Rowan fer sum time now, ever since he become Archbishop uf Canterbery. This year ain’t the Rowan I know, why he wouldn’t say boo to a goose! The very idea of ol’ Rowan gitting het up and all snarky and makin’ folks bawl is jest unbelievable to them what knows him.

Why look year, onct a few years ago all tha’ upper crust wuz a havin’ a big to do at Lambath, and I snuck up behin’ ol Rowan and I goosed him right good, and he let out a big whoop! but he never got mad or nothin’, jest kinda wagged his fanger at me an’ said: “Fireball, whut we gonna do with you?”

No sir! I don’ believe this year story a-tall.

May 26, 2011

Are you suggesting that the esteemed member of the British Press might be mistaken in his reporting? Shame!!!

May 26, 2011

Count me among the skeptical as well. And I best leave it at that.

Smurf Breath
May 26, 2011

Cigarettes, asbestos, radiation, charred meats, and now bad tempered broccoli shaped Archbishops. It’s getting more dangerous out there by the day.

Martial Artist
May 26, 2011

Come, come Dr. Stroud. We ought not rule out the invaluable contribution of feelings to an accurate diagnosis. Not a few people believe that feelings are far more reliable than facts, rational cogitation, hunches, suspicions, etc. Why, where do you think we might be as a nation today if so many our fellow citizens valued actual knowledge and ratiocination as responses to difficulties more than they valued their own narcissistic feelings?


Oh, right, we’d have a real President rather than a tiresome, windbag of a poseur, no Federal Reserve and no Keynesian economists allowed anywhere near the levers of monetary control. And maybe even an Episcopal Church that wasn’t an extremely bad farce.

Pax et bonum,
Keith Töpfer

May 26, 2011

Wait – Colin Slee died of pancreatic cancer? I had no idea the man was sick, and if this is true, I send my sympathies to his family and my prayers for his soul.

That out of the way, let me say this much: with regards to appointing a bishop who “even if they are celibate, must consider whether they can “act as a focus for unity” to their flocks if appointed to a diocese”, I would love to see such an appointment.

Yes, I would love to see a celibate, chaste-living gay bishop who declares that he has chosen this path in fidelity to the teaching of the Church and the will of God, and is living in this way as an example. I’m sure there must be some gay and lesbian Anglicans like that, because there are some gay and lesbian Catholics like that (I know of two bloggers, for instance).

Trouble is, if they did appoint such a bishop, the controversy would be incredible. The accusations of homophobia, oppression, self-hatred and the like would deafen you. So I don’t see it happening.

May 26, 2011

By the bye, if that report is anyway true, it would seem that My Lord of Canterbury is treating gay and straight candidates equally as regards their manner of life; I note that the man married to a divorced woman was also vetoed – which would seem to be lining up with the prescriptions in the epistles of St. Paul. So the personal lives of both straight and gay people are expected to cohere with the Scriptures, when it comes to Christian living.

Surely equality of treatment is what all the kerfuffle is about? It cannot be that a gay candidate should be chosen precisely and solely because he is gay!

*sarcasm off*

May 26, 2011

Fuinseoig, There is no such thing as ‘gay’ and ‘straight’ ‘sexual orientation’ etc.

These are hypothetical constructs or theoretical concepts to explain and defend people’s conditioned responses and how they feel about themselves and wish to get their jollies.

A careful reading of Romans 1 and I Corinthians 6 and the rest of the NT will show you that the early church did not treat or process persons who had disoriented identities, attraction to have sexual intercourse with persons of the same sex any differently than anyone else. Everyone was to repent, to die to the old identity, old ways of thinking, feeling, doing and to become new creatures in Christ Jesus. Period.

All that orientation and identity garbage is a form of rebellion and an attempt to justify and defend against admitting and repenting of sin.

The problem going on in the churches right now is that folks have come to believe in these fairy tales.

Smurf Breath
May 26, 2011

What Whitestone said. Also, Fuinseoig, note that while Jeffrey Johns claims to be chaste, he thinks the church ought to embrace homosexuality and that the chastity requirement should be done away with. What do you think of chaste people of that orientation being bishops, if they also intend to push a pro-gay agenda onto the church?

Ed the Roman
May 26, 2011

“You cannot hope
To bribe or twist,
Thank God!
The British journalist.
But, seeing what
The man will do
Unbribed, there’s
No occasion to.”

sybil marshall
May 26, 2011

You guys are selling the ArchFrightwig short. Being shouted at by him might very well cause fatalities. A great many of us here would have a high risk that we might die laughing.

The young fogey
May 26, 2011

Essentially I don’t care – I respect all churches’ right to govern themselves, and some English want ministers who preach homosexuality then they should have them. But ISTM the only real difference between the C of E and the Episcopalians is the C of E has Evangelicals (who historically have stuck around because it paid to remain in the state church), which is delaying or preventing this.

The young fogey
May 26, 2011

That should read: if some English…

May 27, 2011

Did ABC Rowan Williams yell at someone,who was so surprised that he then died?
(sorry, it is bad, but could not resist)

May 27, 2011

Pippa Middleton, huh? I wish you luck. I would definitely stand in line for her affections, but my wife would object. My daughters would, too.

Allen Lewis
May 28, 2011

@gppp –

I note that our genteel host has none of those impediments. So it is possible, if not probable. Poor Pippa! Swept into the glamor world because she is sister to Kate – plus being a knockout in her own right.

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