Wednesday, 24 July 2013

More comment on Monmouth

The Diocese of Monmouth website has this brief biography of its bishop-elect.
Ancient Briton expresses his opinion of the result of the election here.
BBC Wales now has this article

In case anyone from outside the Province of Wales is wondering where Archdeacon Pain stands on at least one of the 'issues' which divide the Anglican world, this is an excerpt from the BBC report:
"...The Venerable Richard Pain, 56, told BBC Radio Wales that he was honoured to be offered the position.
Among the issues which needed to be tackled was declining church membership, he said.
"We need to do something about that. Our relevance for society is very important, and we need to build up better community links and encourage a sense of value and spirituality that people will find attractive."
He also said he looked forward "to a day when we're able to have women bishops for a sense of equality in the church"....
Well, quite.... 
No one who refused to make that particular prostration to the zeitgeist would now even be considered for election as a bishop in the Church in Wales...
The Diocese of Monmouth website also comments that  Archdeacon Pain is 'a keen supporter of the ministry of women as bishops....' - which perhaps is a somewhat nuanced comment on the initially more reluctant support to the 'development' offered by his predecessor.

But, however tempting it might be, we should not prejudge the new bishop's view on the related matter of finding genuine and truly 'inclusive' provision for traditionalists within Wales. The proof of the pudding and all that ....
We must also pray that the Welsh episcopal bench and the Governing Body will, later this year, take a historically literate view of the nature of Anglicanism and that they will not fall into the 'relevancy' trap neatly summarised by Fr Mascall (see yesterday's post) in this way:
"...On the contrary such a proposal needs the most searching examination; otherwise the Church may be found to have committed itself to an irreversible course of action that future generations will condemn as reflecting the ephemeral and unsubstantial prejudices of the latter part of the twentieth century. Those who dismiss the Church's past practice as socially conditioned and obsolete should seriously ask themselves whether their own proposals may not fall under the same condemnation. Sociology is a game at which more than one can play! ..."
Adequate and permanent provision for those who hold to the Church's traditional view of apostolicity would at least have the advantage that the contemporary rush to embrace the culture of the day need not be irreversible - another reason, of course, why the suggestion meets with such opposition from those whose theology expresses more liberalism than liberality.


  1. I wish the South Wales Argus hadn't referred to the Bishop Elect as the 'Venerable Pain'. Oh dear.

    1. The Church is no longer regarded as significant enough for journalists to make the effort to get our terminology right -not to mention in the newspaper concerned the rather undeserved echoes of Wearmouth...


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