Friday, June 15, 2012

Nelson Jones writes for the New Statesman on the present shape of the CofE in Britain's secular society. After some judiciously worded statements about the appeal of the CofE for weddings and funerals and positioning in a multi-faith society, the article concludes:


There are dangers for the Church in embracing an enhanced multi-faith role in a society in which strong religious commitment is waning.  By speaking out on behalf of faith, forming alliances with other churches and religious groups, it risks losing that comforting and liberal image that has, until now, made it a source of national unity rather than division.  It risks losing that vague connection with the people without which it ceases to be in any proper sense a national church and becoming once more a bastion of religious conservatism and even prejudice.  
By coming out so strongly against same-sex marriage, for example, the Church leadership has made itself look to many people out of touch and divisive, including to many of its natural supporters, including to many of its practising members and even clergy.  It's hard to believe that the C of E has much of a future as the Daily Mail at prayer. 




(Update: even the conservative Church Times has some cautionary words about the statements against same-sex marriage attributed to the Anglican Church.)

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