John Richardson writes that the Church of England is... staring into the abyss when it comes to declining numbers... and that a new breed of bishops is emerging; one who is ambitious for church growth. But John sees peril ahead because he knows that it is only the extremely orthodox who can speak about Jesus... because Jesus is all about SEX. He says that even some evangelicals are moving away from teaching bigotry. He concludes by saying ...the orthodox therefore face a difficult challenge... they must develop and make the case for sexual orthodoxy and, if necessary, must be willing to confront even those bishops who are leading the evangelistic charge in their dioceses.
And what better way to 'man up' than use the Phillip Jensen 'Hall of Shame' technique?
Aren't fundamentalists just such wholesome loving people?
Well we can't have people in the Church saying stuff like ... John - it is tragic and sad that once again - and in Christmas tide - you can only post negatively about things that the vast majority of people are really tired of people going on about in the Church of England. Orthodoxy is about a great deal more than sexuality. Extreme conservatives are having to face the fact that ordained women are here to stay, and some are even being converted to the good news that they represent. Fortunately at Chelmsford you have a bishop who can be positive and inclusive about both ordained women and same sex partnerships. You have now seen that it is still possible to support such things AND be evangelistic. That is the good news. They are not difficult days at all. They are days of rejoicing. If extreme conservatives want to sit and whine then can you please encourage them to do so quietly whilst we get on with the crucial task of proclaiming the good news?
Andrew Godsall, Exeter
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