1. Today is the anniversary of the first London bombings. Do not forget the victims- especially in your prayers. I also pray for the conversion of terrorists, those who make it their business of destroying innocent lives. As some of you would know at the time of these tragic events I was ministering in London and on this day was on one of the places of terror. However, in a city that is so busy and where people do not have time for each other, that day I witnessed human solidarity at its best. There was no homeless or city banker, no local or foreigner, even languages were not a barrier. Why does it take a tragedy of such proportions to bring people together to share the common humanity?
2. Many people have been asking for my thoughts as we stand on the threshold of this session of the July 2010 General Synod of the Church of England.
I think this Synod is the one that changes nothing and changes everything.
Changes nothing: The teaching office of the CofE has been compromised. The period of reception announced solemnly at the innovation of admitting women to the Anglican presbyterate has been silently scrapped overnight. The spirit of the passing age has hidden the eternal light of Truth given and guaranteed by
Jesus, hidden for a time and in a place only. That light will shine elsewhere in His own time. It has always been so. It would be madness that allows someone to think that women will now not be made bishopesses; I think it is utter hope (hope against hope?) that allows some of us to think that this synod will provide a sure footing for those who in conscience do not accept these heresies. Nothing will change from where things stand today.
Everything will change: This synod will show how much it is willing to be led by bishops. Most probably, the new class of bishops that this synod will create (male, female, divorcees etc) is the same class of episcopate that this synod will go towards watering down to some Methodist understanding of oversight. This might be the dogmatic synod that will decide who is in and who is out of the CofE not by the light of scriptures or creeds as received by her, but by the prescription of the latest wind of change. This will be the inclusive synod that will glory in excluding those whose only fault is being loyal to the Faith as received by the CofE and held in its formularies and articles which no one is expected to take heed of anyways – they are now like a church notice board, displaying names and times but nothing else. This synod might be the synod that starts a new Christian realignment that will free each other to follow ones conscience in joy and trust and faith. It might be the synod that will point some to pastures new and enable others to accept development and live with more integrity and harmony in the CofE.
Above all else, I hope it will be a synod of honest and genuine respect and not empty words and more false promises. A synod that will allow the people of God to follow the way He indicates without making unnecessary obstacles to each other.
3. Today after Mass, James, Chad and I hope to go to Aylesford to sit at the feet of Jesus in the company of Mary, in that holy place where she decided to clothe us as her own. We will ask the Lord to hold us as we face an uncertain future, however it is not a future that scares us anymore, it is a future with the Lord wherever He carries us. I hope that like me you are encouraged to see two young brave men who are giving up everything to follow their call in such uncertain times. Pray for them and rejoice for them!
Today is Chad’s last day in Sevenoaks. He will be a miss. We want to end his time here in pilgrimage at Aylesford, entrusting our future to her, the Mother of all priests, and asking her especially to hold Chad and
James in her hands as they await the gift of the Holy Spirit in their ordination as deacons.