A parishioner who says he has been wrongly exiled has placed his faith in the Supreme Court.

The first sign of trouble for Bruce Haddon came at an impromptu meeting with his pastor, the Reverend Dominic Steele, the conservative rector of St Aidan's Anglican Church in Annandale. Mr Steele informed Mr Haddon that he had become aware, via members of Mr Haddon's home Bible study group, that he had questioned the accuracy of the Old Testament. As punishment, Mr Haddon says, he was banned from his ministry role within the church, where he had been appointed to greet parishioners arriving at Sunday evening services.

But it was just a hint of what was to come for Mr Haddon largely sparked by a single email sent two years later in February 2008, containing allegations that Mr Haddon believes implied he was guilty of sexual misconduct towards women in the church. He claims it is all part of a vicious campaign to force him out of the church because of his liberal beliefs.

However a spokesman for the diocese said: ''Both Mr Steele as minister and Mr Batten (a parishioner) as parish councillor had a duty of care to the young women of the congregation which compelled them to act in the face of complaints. This legal action against them for upholding that duty will be actively and strenuously defended.''

Damaging rumours began to spread shortly after he was banned from duties, Mr Haddon believes, because the congregation was not given an explanation. He asked Mr Steele to clear the air by explaining to the congregation that the ban was on theological grounds, but that was not done. Shortly after, Mr Haddon was formally expelled, he says, without the opportunity to appeal.

Among Mr Haddon's beliefs are that the Bible contains factual errors, that women should enjoy equality in worship and marriage and that Jesus was not born of a virgin.

The case is set down for hearing in the Supreme Court from March 22.

COMMENT: The Head of the Family Firm's lackie sounds like a right cult to me.



  1. I once had a blog and I remember writing about this bloke. My title was something like “Too much peace in the world? Let’s have a little bit of Northern Ireland here in Sydney.”

    I guess he’s got his own troubles now.

  2. “The Bible contains factual errors, that women should enjoy equality in worship and marriage and that Jesus was not born of a virgin.”

    Sorry: where’s the controversy again?

  3. At college Steele (a product of Philip Jensen’s previous ministry at St. Matthias) was famous for refusing to attend Church History 1 lectures because the lecturer was female. The previous Archbishop had no intention of ordaining him, but once Jensen was elected Steele was ordained – despite having previously been outspoken in his opposition to ordination as “popish” and “unbiblical”.

    He was then fast-tracked onto Standing Committee and the lucky recipient of a multi-million dollar building grant. While continuing to teach that women must never read the bible aloud in the presence of any males past puberty.

    If there’s anyone in that place with an “inappropriate” attitude it’s sure not Bruce Haddon. Anywhere else in the world Steele would have been dismissed as a nutjob years ago. The word “cult” doesn’t begin to describe them.

  4. “Jesus was not born of a virgin”

    Personally, I have no opinion on the intactness of the Holy Hymen. I just couldn’t give a bleedin’ cherry about it…

  5. All you bloggers are too funny. Here’s a church that’s trying to do something about sexual predators. If you were proper humanists you’d say, “good on you for at least getting that right”. Instead you’re taking the opportunity to sledge the church because it takes its beliefs seriously. Honestly, you liberals crack me up.

  6. I notice that the judge acknowledged the theological imperialism of the Family Firm and that the leaders of this parish wanted to get rid of the plaintiff because of his contrary views. Such thought control has no place in the Church of Christ as it was never a part of Christ’s ministry. My condemnation of the Family Firm for bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ into disrepute remains as strong as ever.

  7. I’m reading from the judgement.

    And I know plenty about The Family Firm. But then that’s the arrogance of evil, it always believes itself to be more secure than it actually is.