Monday, 16 February 2009

What kind of a title is that?

What, apart from being a pretty good description of my general outlook on life, you mean?

Well, it's like this. Last week there was a General Synod debate entitled "The Uniqueness of Christ in Multi-Faith Britain." There is a little bit about it in the unofficial General Synod Blog here, and rather more on Peter Ould's Blog here, and if you want to know more you can find the official Church of England summary here. The debate was on a Private Member's Motion brought by Paul Eddy. Paul is known as a conservative evangelical - certainly in Church of England terms - although I don't really think that this description does him justice. Perhaps because of this reputation, or perhaps because of simple paranoia, Paul's Motion caused the General Synod rumour mill to start working overtime. The motion was part of a conservative plot to... well, pretty much anything really: to embarrass the bishops; to have a go at Islam; to get us all talking about sex again - you name it.

Much of the panic left me more than a little underwhelmed. As far as I am concerned, life would be rather easier if just occasionally we took things at face value. Paul's motion as it stood highlighted the very real tension between the imperative within Christianity to witness to our own faith and the reality of the multi-faith (and increasingly secular) society in which we live. The fact that I describe myself as a Liberal does not mean that I am any less committed to spreading the Gospel, even if I do differ from Paul in my interpretation of some parts of it. Anyway, the debate for the most part went pretty well, but the vast majority of those who spoke tended towards the Evangelical side of things, and there were a couple of times when we were beginning to move away from testimony and get a little closer to smiting.

So, I made a speech in favour of the main motion and against both the amendments in which I tried to point out that there was not an Evangelical monopoly in considering that this issue was important. One of the things I said was that passing the motion unamended was as important for the Liberals in the Church as for anyone else, and as the dodgiest of dodgy Liberals I asked the Synod to pass Paul's Motion unamended. And there you have it - it's official - I am a self-confessed dodgy Liberal.

1 comment:

About You said...

Welcome to the fold.

ps spelling dodgey incorrectly adds to the perceived dodginess!