If there’s one thing all this Lambeth fuss teaches us, it’s that the Archbishop of Canterbury has a strange masochistic streak. By that I don’t mean the sort of youthful high jinks that Brother Richthofen’s friends from Seminary get up to, with their funny leather costumes and studded paddles, but a really deep-seated desire to be psychologically pushed around and insulted.
Really, why else would he keep asking senior toadies from a church not his own, and which doesn’t even recognise his own Holy Orders, let alone his office as Grand Tufti of All that is Anglican, to come and tell him and his Bishops how they’re doing everything wrong? What on earth does the Big Cheese of Cantaur expect: that someone who delights in kissing the Pope’s ring on a daily basis is going to say “You Anglicans are all the greatest Ministers of God since the Holy Spirit guided Cranmer’s marriage counselling sessions with Henry VIII?”
As the World’s Finest Parish Priest and Bible-teacher I’ve got to say I’ve never met anyone who contributes to my offertory because of what some Cardinal says or doesn’t say. The Romans are a colourful lot, and they can certainly teach us a tremendous deal about treating women as second-class citizens, but at the end of the day anything they might say is secondary to our real business of building profitable and successful parishes. And listening to them tell us over and over how we’re getting it all wrong because we’re not doing things their way isn’t going to help me or anyone else build a Jacuzzi in the manse.
I’m Father Christian and I teach the Bible.