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That Protect the Pope should have been silenced, and that Cranmer should now also be silent, makes one wonder what is going on? Of course orthodox Christians are easily shut up by men in authority because, being orthodox, they are obedient. The opposite is true of the unorthodox, although, and I am sure Struans or some good fellow will put me right, I don’t seem to be seeing bishops telling the unorthodox to put a rope sandal in it. So it is that the unorthodox thrive unhindered, whilst men with a sterling track record of supporting orthodoxy are silenced. This blog has neither the reach nor the talent of those two, but it has the advantage that there is no one to tell a Baptist to shut it.

Offered a platform in the New Statesman (amazed to see it still there, I presume it gets a big subsidy from someone?) to say something about how to fill in the hole left by God, Rowan Atkinson Williams and Lucy Winkett (no, I am not making this up, that’s what she’s called) both blather on about silence. In the archbishop’s case it is Buddhist meditation practice, which he likens to hesychasm (not that he uses the word). You’d not know from him that there is quite a bit of controversy over this practice, and many Spiritual Fathers think it is not to be practised by novices; but hey, let’s mention friendly old Buddhism and imply that it is for all; a period of silence from this source would be very welcome; perhaps for good? I am sure the Rev. Winkett’s piece means something, but whatever it is, it is not preaching the Word. So, offered the chance to provide testimony to a bunch of non-believers what do they do – they curry favour.

As a very good blog (which I recommend) by Clare Short outlines, this sort of failing is very common among our senior clergy. When Anglican bishops turn up at ‘Gay Pride’ marches and want to marry their male, or female, ‘partner’ what is to be said of the example they set their flocks? Their crooks should be broken over then thick heads. But note, it is never this sort who are silent, or, indeed, silenced by other bishops or authority. Unorthodoxy and disobedience consort well together. One of the things the Internet brought to this was a flurry of blogs which supported orthodoxy; but gradually, the Bishops are getting a handle on this and realising they can shut down the good ones; is it any wonder some blog anonymously?

Between Pope Frankie’s magic circus, Anglican bishops who take no opportunity to go on about God, and the need to cuddle up to the secular zeitgeist, a fellow might well wonder what the world is coming to, save for the fact it was always thus. It was not to the rich and the powerful and the frightfully clever and well-connected that Jesus appealed most; surely, he preached to them, but they, on the whole, received him not. It is to us children, to the poor, to the outcasts, and to all with a lively sense of their own sin that he appeals; it is here he finds open hearts. Let the Archbish sit in silence, and I hope he hears the still small voice in it.