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Nov 05 2011

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone…

It’s been a while since I last had a good rant but the sanctimonious pontificating of bishops on wealth has set me off, that and the wine!

The Archbishop of Canterbury was going on about it earlier in the week, and today the Archbishop of York says that we should see the very wealthy in the same terms as we seen racists and misogynists. He doesn’t think the very wealthy should receive honours from the Queen. He is, of course, an unelected member of the House of Lords something which is a very high honour which is utterly unearnt on his part. He writes:

Over the last few decades racism has lost its respectability and is seen as unacceptable.  The same applies to homophobia (the irrational fear of homosexuals) and discrimination against women. 

Hold on! the Anglican Church only appointed it’s first female bishop in 2009, the Catholics still don’t allow it, and the Anglican Church will only allow a homosexual to be a bishop if they are celibate.

Apparently the Vatican has had a go too, at this point my irony meter explodes. Leaving aside their rather generous treatment of those clergy that sexually abuse children, there’s also the question of their absolute refusal to countenance contraception even to combat disease.

I’m not theologically trained but I believe there is something in the bible along these lines:

And why behold you the mote that is in your brother’s eye, but consider not the beam that is in your own eye?

Of course one could argue that the Anglican Church’s attitude to woman and homosexuals and the Vatican’s casual approach to child sex abuse by it’s clergy are not relevant to their opinions on financial matters. However these are both very wealthy organisations, they became wealthy because for a very long time they have collected tithes from their flock. They are also treated favourably in tax terms, perhaps we could ask the Archbishop of Canterbury what fraction of their income goes on charitable work.

This follows the Anglican Church’s deep confusion as it failed to realise that it’s view of St Paul’s Cathedral (entrance £14.50) as a major tourist attraction and revenue stream was a little incompatible with it’s vague support of the equally vague OccupyLSX movement.

Thank you for hearing my rant.

5 comments

  1. dave

    I note the Archbishop of York is careful to define homophobia as the irrational fear of homosexuals. I’m sure Melanie Phillips is happy with that definition.

  2. Ian

    Yes, I noticed that too. He also refused to sign the Cambridge Accord, in support of equal human rights for homosexual people, which was something most bishops managed.

  3. koenfucius

    So His Grace seems to want to persecute people because they have too much money… In what way would this be different from persecuting people because they are too dark-skinned?

  4. Ian

    Yes, quite.

    Church published a report on the morality of city workers today. The author was on the radio this morning explaining how he had acted perfectly morally as a banker in the City for 30 years, it was just other people didn’t.

    I also note that they blame technology for increased immorality – slave trading, South Sea Bubble and Tulip mania all happened without the aid of modern technology.

    1. koenfucius

      It really is profound intellectual laziness to blame technology for anything. Technology makes stuff easy – any stuff, good or bad.

      And what to make of things like

      The findings show that Ken Costa, the former chairman of Lazards International, appointed last week by the Rt Rev Richard Chartres, bishop of London, to lead a dialogue between the City and the Church of England on ethical capitalism, may have his work cut out as only a third of those questioned said they believed in God, about half the proportion in the country as a whole. In an article in the Sunday Telegraph, Costa, himself a practising Anglican, said maximising shareholder returns should no longer be the sole criterion for judging how companies are run.

      In what way does belief in God guarantee ethical behaviour?

      Who is doing the judging of how companies are run?

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