Of Course, I Could be Wrong

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In Praise Of The Unnatural

The bringing of a person who had been dead for over twenty-four hours back to life is about the most unnatural event in the history of the world. Walking on water, feeding thousands of people with five loaves and two fish, changing water into wine, curing lepers and giving sight to the blind are all actions that are distinctly lacking in respect for the laws of physics and the natural order of things. People praying for miracles are blatantly requesting the unnatural.

So do not tell me that something you do not like the sound of is morally wrong simply because you regard it as "unnatural." My very faith is based on the history of God's unnatural intervention in the world and so should yours be.

Mad Priest Goes To Town

I travelled from my village into town this afternoon on a bus. It was the first time I had used any form of public transport in over a year. Other than the driver, who was safely ensconced behind perspex, I was the only person on board so I had no problem social distancing. You will be pleased to know that I wore a facemask for the entire journey as per the regulations even though I was travelling alone.

I did get caught out by one thing. The bus company now insists that you pay the exact fare, no change will be given. That cost me an extra twenty pence. No big deal, but I do think it a tad unfair that they expect you to have the exact amount of cash when you do not know how much it is going to cost until the bus driver tells you. It is not as if they put the prices on the bus shelter timetable.

Having had my first injection some while ago I have come to the conclusion that things are not going to get much better than they are at present and at my age life is definitely short and getting rapidly shorter. So, heck, I am being sensible but I am no longer avoiding shops and public spaces like the plague. I am, of course, still avoiding young people, but I was doing that before the pandemic. It is just commonsense to do so. They are infested with germs at all times and do embarrassing things without warning.

Passing Thoughts Of A Mad Priest

Imagine that they made as much fuss about the food we buy from the supermarket as they are doing about the AstraZeneca virus. We would all fecking starve. Imagine that they made as much fuss about the cars we drive and the chemicals which have infiltrated into every aspect of our modern lives. Imagine that AstraZeneca was one of the big, American pharmaceutical companies.

Passing Thought Of A Mad Priest

Jesus died so that our sins might be forgiven but he did nothing for the sinned against. Before Jesus, at least sinners went to hell. Because of Jesus, those same sinners can get off scot-free if they say sorry (not to the sinned-against, as might be assumed, but to God).

You only have to look around you at the world to see that the sinned against are still waiting for a saviour.

Passing Thoughts Of A Mad Priest

Why is racism such an obsession at the moment; pretty much to the exclusion of every other social issue? There are plenty of injustices that are as bad as racism, many that I would consider worse.

My guess is that it is because most of those "as bad as or even worse" issues could only be sorted out by the rich giving a lot of their money to the poor, whilst tackling racism is mostly a matter of changing attitudes.

Am I being cynical?

Of course, I am. It has served me well in the past. I see no reason to adopt a naive, herd-following attitude now.

Bournemouth Council To Discuss Getting Rid Of Gender

The motion “to use gender-neutral language across the council’s reports and formal communications” will be discussed next week, Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council in England, confirmed. Under the proposal, people would be addressed as 'Mx" instead of Mr, Mrs, Miss or Ms. Instead of being referred to as he or she, people would be called 'they’, while instead of Mr or Madam Chairman, ‘Chair’ would be used.

The motion has been proposed by independent councillor L-J Evans and seconded by Labour member Lisa Lewis.

"It is not political correctness gone mad," Ms Evans said at a previous council meeting.

Passing Thoughts Of A Mad Priest

One per cent of people own fifty per cent of the world's wealth, ten per cent own eighty-five per cent, and we are arguing about gendered pronouns and whether black poor people are more hard done by than white poor people. The bastards have really got us exactly where they want us and the liberal, middle-class has fallen for it hook, line and sinker.

Killer Thrown Out Of Church

Crabapple First Baptist Church, the home church of Robert Aaron Long who has been charged with the murder of eight people at three massage parlours in the US state of Georgia on the sixteenth of March, has condemned his actions and has withdrawn his membership from the church as he “can no longer affirm that he is truly a regenerate believer in Jesus Christ."

Church Of England To Embrace Positive Discrimination

The Church of England is considering introducing a thirty per cent quota for ethnic minority clergy on its strategic leadership development programme, a leaked report has revealed. It is also planning to provide training on racism and give context about church statues that might cause " pain or offence" as part of their efforts to combat racism within the institution.

A leaked report contains calls for the Church of England leaders to "acknowledge, repent and take decisive action to address the shameful history and legacy."

Around fifteen per cent of people in England and Wales are from minority ethnic backgrounds. Most of them are not Christian or descended from Christians. Three-point-four per cent of the population of England and Wales are of African descent.

Bonny Not Happy

From the Associated Press:

Antwerp Bishop Johan Bonny wrote in an opinion piece on Wednesday that he feels “shame for my Church” and “intellectual and moral incomprehension” after Pope Francis approved the “negative” response to a question about whether Roman Catholic clergy have the authority to bless same-sex unions. The official response said God “does not and cannot bless sin".

Bonny, who was part of a Vatican 2015 synod on marriage and family, said: “I want to apologise to all for whom this is painful and incomprehensible.”

He also said that he was disappointed by the level of argument that ran through the note from the Vatican’s orthodoxy office, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

“Intellectually, this does not even reach the level of high school. These kinds of arguments, the logic, you see right through it. These days, you don't convince anyone that way,” Bonny said.

The conference of Belgian bishops backed Bonny's concerns, saying LGBT faithful and their families saw the Vatican decree as “exceptionally painful". The conference urged everyone to work on “a climate of respect, recognition and integration.”

Life During The Hysterical Twenties

My problem with the response to the horrible murder of Sarah Everard is that it is emotional (overly so) rather than rational. It ignores statistics (for example, the abduction and murder of women is extremely rare and men are five times more likely than women to be attacked in the streets and murdered) and those involved in the protests do not suggest any realistic remedies. Worse, still, they accuse all men of the crimes of a few psychopaths (one per cent of the population are psychopathic and few of them will ever commit acts of physical violence) and, let's face it, if they cannot be bothered to identify those responsible accurately it is unlikely that a sensible and specific remedy will be found.

I wish people would just calm down.

Do We Need More Bombs?

Church leaders across seven U.K. denominations have today made the following statement following the publication of the Government’s integrated review of foreign and defence policies:

“The Government’s decision in the integrated review of defence, security and foreign policy to increase the number of Trident nuclear warheads the UK can stockpile by more than forty per cent is a retrograde step that will not make any of us safer.

“Our Trident submarines already carry warheads that in total have an explosive yield equivalent to hundreds of the bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima. It is immoral that the UK government is committing resources, which could be spent on the common good of our society, to stockpiling even more.

“Over the last fifty years, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty has restricted the increase in the number of nuclear weapons worldwide as well as the number of new nuclear-armed states. This announcement puts those gains in jeopardy and weakens collective action on non-proliferation. Progress on reducing the threat from nuclear weapons will come through dialogue, diplomacy and principled action. The Government’s announcement today will complicate rather than aid this process.“

The entry into force of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons is an encouraging development. As people of faith, we join with millions across the world who are working towards the elimination of nuclear arsenals. Living up to our responsibilities under the Non-Proliferation Treaty would be a step towards realising that vision. We believe that ‘Global Britain’ should strive for peaceful and cooperative international relationships, and joint endeavour on climate change, global poverty and other challenges. This announcement takes us in a worrying and wholly wrong direction.”

*****

When I was young I was an ardent ban-the-bomber. With age and hindsight, I am prepared to at least consider the possibility that mutually assured destruction made a third world war during the twentieth century extremely unlikely. I even think that, as the U.K. has a nuclear capability, we might as well keep it as it is a cost-effective deterrent against actual invasion. However, we only need four warheads; one pointing at Russia, one at China, one at the U.S.A. and one kept in reserve just in case the French and Germans slip from petulance over Brexit into outright aggression.

Memories Brought To Mind Following The Death Of A Tutor

I learned today that George Bebawi, one of my tutors from theological college died recently. He was eighty-three. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.

I have a recurring dream about my alma mater in which I never leave it. I just keep taking the course over and over again. I am not surprised as it was the last time in my life that I was happy and felt that I was part of a community of people. After leaving college I became a curate with the vicar from hell, a bullying, fat queen whose behaviour around the teenagers in the congregation made my flesh crawl (on one occasion, he took a boy from the congregation to a "sauna" and photographed him in the nude). I had a nervous breakdown and that led eventually to my constructive expulsion from the Church of England. My time at ordination college and all the hard work I put in, turned out to be a waste of time. No wonder, I dream about going back there and starting again, making sure I choose my training vicar and diocesan bishop with far more care than I did last time. Sadly, in my church, you do not get a second chance.

The Hypocrisy Of The Woke

I have no time for the views of anti-vaxxers and I get an almost overwhelming desire to punch in the face people who refuse to wear face-masks when they are supposed to be wearing them. However, I really hate hypocrisy and it strikes me that condemning the police for breaking up an illegal gathering of attention-seeking women whilst applauding the same police force for breaking up illegal gatherings of anti-vaxxers and lockdown-breakers is the height of hypocrisy.

On The Me Too (But Not You) Movement

The reason behind violence against women and violence against men is often different and it could be argued that violence inflicted on women by men is more evil than violence men inflict on each other. However, the fact remains that men (especially young men) are far more likely to be attacked in the street than women are. I was set upon from behind, without provocation, and beaten up twice when I was in my late teens as I was walking alone.

The enemy is the hatred that resides in human beings and the violence this leads to. Once again, we are dividing those offended against into separated groups and turning victimhood into a competition. This is so counter-productive that you might come to the conclusion that it must be a deliberate attempt by a hostile agent to stop us from "all" becoming a better and united people.

Passing Thoughts Of A Mad Priest

Nothing says, "Fuck you, you peasants!" more than getting the Archbishop of Canterbury to marry you secretly two days before what you have told everyone is your wedding.

See also, "Nothings says, 'It's all about me" more than..."

All Men Are The Same, Claims Kenyan Woman

In Kenya, gospel artist Loise Kim has caused a stir after she advised Kenyan women to stick with their husbands even when they cheat on them.

“No woman should leave her husband because he has taken another woman, reason, no man is better than the other, just know how to handle him and solve your issues,” she wrote.

“If you leave your husband because he has taken another woman and you think that you will go and get a better man out there, I am sorry you are wrong, what you will get is another philanderer who is worse than your husband. Fight for this man who belongs to you,” she added.

Today is International Women's Day.

Archbishop Of Fudge Condemns Archbishop Of Hate

The Archbishop of Canterbury has condemned the “unacceptable” language that the Archbishop of Nigeria, the Most Revd Henry Ndukuba, recently used to describe gay people.

In response to a statement on the pastoral care of gay people issued by the Anglican Church in North America in January, Archbishop Ndukuba wrote last week: “The deadly ‘virus’ of homosexuality has infiltrated ACNA. This is likened to a yeast that should be urgently and radically expunged and excised lest it affects the whole dough (Luke 13:20-21; Gal. 5:9).”

In a statement issued on Friday, Archbishop Welby says: “I completely disagree with and condemn this language. It is unacceptable. It dehumanises those human beings of whom the statement speaks. I have written privately to His Grace The Archbishop to make clear that this language is incompatible with the agreed teaching of the Anglican Communion."

Of course, Ndukuba is full of ignorance, hate and fear but, at least, he is honest and consistent. Unlike the Archbishop of Canterbury who insists that lesbian and gay people are equal to everyone else in the eyes of God and fully welcome in the Anglican church but who then holds to unenlightened and cruel legislation that shows lesbian and gay people that the Anglican church believes no such thing.

Personally, I would rather be hated by a Ndukuba than loved by a Welby.

Fat Pastor Criticises Overweight Wives

Leaders of the General Baptist Council of Associations in the United States have recommended an investigation of a minister who preached that "weight control" by wives is the solution for marital problems.

Stewart-Allen Clark, the pastor of the First General Baptist Church in Malden, Missouri, is seen in video clips of a February the twenty-first sermon questioning the appearance of women after they marry their husbands.

"Why is it so many times that women after they get married let themselves go?" he asks, standing on a stage with what appears to be a large open Bible in his left hand. "Why do they do that?"

At one point during his sermon, Clark makes a comparison to the former first lady, showing a picture of her in a long, sleeveless blue dress.

"Now look, I’m not saying every woman can be the epic, the epic trophy wife of all time like Melania Trump," he said. "But you don’t need to look like a butch either."

He added a joke that prompted his laughter and others:

“Scientists have discovered, by the way, a food that diminishes a woman’s sex drive. It’s called wedding cake."

"The General Baptist officials stated in a Monday Facebook post that Clark had been scheduled to be the moderator of the General Association of General Baptists meeting in July, 2022."

"He has resigned from that position," the post reads.

Cyprus Give Its Eurovision Heart To The Devil

From Associated Press:

The Orthodox Church of Cyprus on Tuesday called for the withdrawal of the country’s controversial entry into this year’s Eurovision song contest titled El Diablo, charging that the song makes an international mockery of the country’s moral foundations by advocating “our surrender to the devil and promoting his worship".

With the church now having officially weighed in, the controversy has taken on a new dimension after the song and its lyrics (“I gave my heart to el diablo because he tells me I’m his angel”) caused a stir among some in the east Mediterranean island nation, who consider it to be fraught with Satanic connotations.

The chairman of the board of the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation, Andreas Frangos, insists that the song won’t be withdrawn and that it wasn’t the broadcaster’s intention to insult anyone’s religious sentiments. However, he conceded that the broadcaster should’ve done a better job explaining the core message of the tune, which describes an abusive relationship between two lovers.

The annual Eurovision contest is a beloved European institution watched by millions that often involves songs that are controversial, in questionable taste, just plain bad or, as in the case of this year's entry from Cyprus, complete and utter shite.

The Fascism Of The Woke

The acclaimed author Marieke Lucas Rijneveld has pulled out of translating Amanda Gorman’s poetry into Dutch after their publisher was criticised for picking a writer for the role who was not also Black.

This is exactly the sort of cultural segregation that good people condemned when it was rife in apartheid-era South Africa and Jim Crow era America.

Political Correctness Is Driving Me Mad

Why can we say "people of colour" but not "coloured people?" Obviously, the word "coloured" has nasty connotations, so why not completely avoid using it to describe human beings? Making a distinction that can get a person cancelled and sacked between two phrases that actually mean exactly the same thing makes a mockery of the English language.

If I catch anyone saying collared greens rather than greens of collar, I will report them to the thought police!

New Leader Of Evangelicals Calls For The Worship Of Idols

The World Evangelical Alliance officially handed over its top leadership position to Bishop Thomas Schirrmacher on Saturday, with the new secretary-general and CEO of the global organisation of evangelical churches detailing what it means to be evangelical.

Speaking from a studio near the city of Bonn in western Germany he described the Bible as the “confession of the Church” that stands above everything and everyone. He pointed out that the very idea of a paper document, rather than a person, having ultimate authority originated in the Old Testament, where the Torah was regarded as higher than even the king.

“We are proud to have a Paper Pope because the Paper Pope assures that none of us, including me, are above the Word of God,” he said. “We all submit to the Word of God; no one is above it.”Of course, he has fallen into the pit of blasphemy that most modern-day evangelicals trip themselves up into. The Word of God is not made of paper. The Word of God is a person. Only the words that were spoken by the Word are the words of God. All other words that are recorded as being from God are the words of human beings who are not the Word. They may be inspired, they may be useful for our salvation but they are not reliable in the same way that the words of Jesus Christ are. They are certainly not inerrant. Only God can be inerrant. To claim that the words of those who are merely human are inerrant is to claim that human beings are as God and that is blasphemy.

Schirrmacher, who, honestly, should know better is hovering close to making his paper pope into a golden bull. He needs to turn his eyes upon Jesus.

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