July of 2004, in the form of an article in the Daily Telegraph, which begins:
“Church of England harvest festival services could soon expect worshippers not only to thank God for an abundant crop but also to repent for sins against the environment and for oppression and inequality.
“Congregations which traditionally gather around piles of bread, fruit and vegetables to sing ‘We plough the fields and scatter’ will be asked to acknowledge their ‘selfishness in not sharing the earth’s bounty fairly’. They may also apologise for ‘our failure to protect resources for others’ and for ‘inequality and oppression in the earth’.”
The same month saw an injunction that the clergy be discouraged from conducting cremations, on the grounds that … can you possibly guess? On the grounds that cremations release unacceptable levels of greenhouse gases.
This was followed shortly thereafter – in February of 2005 – with recommendations that organic bread and wine be used at Holy Communion,
In addition, according to the Independent:
“Christians will be asked to praise the work of the Body Shop which is described as a ‘brave exception’ for getting people to consider the ethics of their shopping choices.”
It’s unclear whether this “praise” would take the form of a special Body Shop hymn, an addendum to the Book of Common Prayer (“give us this day our jojoba extra rich night cream, and deliver us from wrinkles“) or earth-toned liturgical banners bearing iconography of Anita Roddick – perhaps, in the spirit of the democratic ethos, individual congregations will be allowed to choose their own devotional means.
The Times reports:
“BISHOPS of the Church of England want all Britain’s Christian leaders to get together in public to say sorry for the war in Iraq and its aftermath.
“The bishops say that the Government is not likely to show remorse so the churches should. They want to organise a major gathering with senior figures from the Muslim community to make a ‘public act of repentance’.”
The bishops’ report recommended meeting terrorists’ demands (“addressing of long-standing grievances“) and “perhaps” giving them “economic support” as being crucially important in overcoming terrorism
Today brings news of the latest manifestation of the pathology of guilt that infects both the Archbishop and the broader Church leadership. At the urging of its leader, the General Synod – sharing “the shame and sinfulness of our predecessors” – voted unanimously to apologise to the descendants of slaves, as the Church had at one time profited from ownership.
It is a commonplace among earnest members of the liberal appeaseariat – a group whose position is neatly expressed today by Polly Toynbee, who calls for the West to “give up at once“ in the face of Iran’s threats to develop nuclear weapons in order to “wipe Israel off the map” – that we should “promote understanding” of Muslims and their beliefs, in order to “foster mutual respect”, etc.
The former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, made the point in typical fashion this morning, appearing on the Radio 4 Today programme (streaming RAM), where he called the publication of the cartoons “a deliberate racist attack” (without specifying which “race” was being targeted), and referred to the Muslim response as an “understandable” reaction to Western ignorance of Islam:
“From a Muslim point of view, this reaction [i.e., an attack on Norwegian soldiers by a stone throwing mob] is understandable. It is regrettable that we in the West do not understand, and the danger is when we take free speech too far.”
Ærkebiskoppen af Canterbury med sin ven Arafat