Bishop of Where?

The ever-excitable Ruth Gledhill of The Times has been at it again. A recent letter to The Editor, signed by such luminaries (sic) as the Chairman of InclusiveChurch, the Suffragan Bishop of Buckingham (wherever that is), five superannuated diocesans that most right-thinking people have forgotten about, four working Deans (including he who will never be a bishop) and four unknown bods to make up the numbers, ranted on at some length about how the Church should rejoice over same-sex marriages.

So far, so pedestrian. But by the time our Ruthie had written it up for the news pages, it had taken on a whole new force: ‘Senior bishops and clergy call today on the Church of England to “rejoice” at the prospect of gay marriage…’ And ‘In a challenge to the next Archbishop of Canterbury, influential Anglicans say…’ So the Bishop of Buckingham is a senior bishop in Ruth’s world view, is he? Or perhaps it’s yesterday’s bishops that get her so worked up . .


Under Starter’s Orders…

Meanwhile the race (sic) to succeed Rowan Williams is hotting up. The Sunday Telegraph devoted most of a front page to assertions from ‘one of his closest supporters’ that the Archbishop of York is a ‘victim of “naked racism” by critics who are trying to besmirch his name’ whilst The Times wheeled out the notoriously publicity-shy Lord Carey of Clifton to fulminate on the same subject: ‘I am quite appalled. If there is a besmirching campaign then it is abhorrent and I, for one, will challenge this.

George goes on: ‘I think John Sentamu would be a wonderful choice for Canterbury. There are other people to conside, but he has a proven track record.’ Alerted by Dr Carey’s assertion that there were other people to consider, Ms Gledhill interjected: ‘Dr Sentamu began as favourite to succeed

Dr Williams when the Archbishop of Canterbury announced his retirement lasi month, but has now fallen to third favourite behind the Bishop of Coventry, the Right Rev Christopher Cocksworth, and the Bishop of Norwich, the Right Rev Graham James.’ It would be a very cheap shot indeed to suggest that Ruthie’s source for this line was an Irish Bookmaker, so we won’t (but, if you hurry, you can still get 3/1 on York, whereas Coventry is evens and Norwich is 7/4).

Bad Taste?

Nearer home, the Revd Phil Ritchie of All Saints, Hove showed ‘uncommon courage’ by announcing to anyone who would listen (ie most of the media!) that ‘church just isn’t “cool and funky”.’ His alternative for Easter Day? ‘ . . . there are plenty of -ways to celebrate without coming to a draughty Victorian building. So why not stay at home, have a lie in, have sex and eat some chocolate.’

Worse Taste?

And, if it’s chocolate you want, look no further than www., the home of the First Communion gift that is ‘cool and funky’ enough to cut the mustard even in darkest Hove . .

Inclusive News

30DAYS is delighted to note the appointment of the Revd Dr Rowena Faye Pailing to the tutorial staff at the College of the Resurrection, Mirfield. No doubt she will feel athome amongst a community which, for the second year running, chose Holy Week to demonstrate its radical inclusivity by excluding traditionalist members of the Community of the Resurrection from their own Church on those occasions when the Revd Dr Jennifer Cooper was selected to preside at the liturgies. Said members of CR not able to escape for the week were forced to find refuge in nearby churches of a more genuinely inclusive nature as and when necessary.

Divided by a common language

From an advertisement currently running on, placed by the University of Great Falls – a private, Catholic, liberal arts university – in Montana: Life takes courage. An extraordinary life takes uncommon courage. Join us for Camp Exploration and Adventure . . . .

And finally . . .

Following last month’s reference to the two petitions doing the rounds at the moment on the big ‘n’ boring issue of same-sex marriage, a number of readers have enquired after the current scores. Well, you’ll all be delighted to know that the Changing Attitude one – from a fabulous 1,543 signatures to no less than a wonderful 1,558. Stunning! Meanwhile the Coalition for Marriage petition has gone up by some as well. In fact, by 10,380 times as many signatures, taking it from a meagre 304,631 to a pathetic 460,341. Does no one read The Times?

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