Anyone seeking comfort, hope or spiritual inspiration in the present economic crisis would be well advised not to read the Christmas message of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Sadly, the Archbishop took the easy way out, pointing the finger of blame and his comments were interchangeable from those read in the chosen vessel for his message, the Guardian newspaper. Tolerance and understanding aren’t the Archbishop’s strong suits. This is the man who “regretted” the US move to ordain gay bishops.
Like Ken Livingstone’s latest hilarious attack on the Mayor, when he accuses the Mayor of being a true blue Tory, (haha), the Archbishop pointed the finger of blame at the rioters (lip service), before having a go at his real target, the bankers. These days, there is is nothing like stating the flipping obvious. The Archbishop’s knowledge of finance is as naive and sketchy as that of Labour London Assembly member, Val Shawcross – there was no mention of the benefits to the UK from the bankers and the financial sector. He was also unChristianly selective in picking on the bankers. No mention from him whatsoever of the greedy trade unionists, who, snouts in the trough, are coining it in while trying to wreck the economic recovery.
To listen to the Archbishop, you would have thought that when he and his fellow clergymen at St. Pauls were faced with their own mini-crisis crisis in the form of the Occupy protesters, they had been shining examples of decisiveness and unity. If only! Vacillating, weak kneed, dithering and divided was a better description, as they were shown up as hopelessly inept in handling the situation.
After the Church initially gave support to the protesters, the canon chancellor of St Paul’s, Dr Giles Fraser, resigned from his position on October 27 following reports suggesting a rift between clergy over what action to take concerning the activists. They then started to think it was all a big fat mistake. Further resignations followed.
Particularly shocking has been the reaction from the clergy when the holy of holys, the interior of St. Pauls was besmirched by human defaecation and urination. The first reaction was to hush up the scandal. This was followed by more dithering, and weak assurances that they were sure it was not the Occupy campers. There was no full blooded denunciation of anyone who would perform such a disgraceful act, face saving was all.
Whether the Archbishop likes it or not, a coalition government is running the country, doing its very best to sort out the mess left by the Labour Government. Blame never solved anything. What would be truly helpful would be some words of support and encouragement for our Mayor and the government in the very stressful situations they are in. Today, even the Guardian was fair enough to say Boris is out-performing Ken and also the Tory Party. The Mayor has been outstandingly successful, as the polls show, and the Tory part of the coalition is out-performing expectations. Churlishly, not only is there not a word of praise from the Archbishop, he just moans there should be more help for young people, without of course any sensible suggestions as to what.
Forget about spiritual inspirational, the only bit of that came from Boris Johnson when he suggested that all denominations should pray together. That was beautiful and uplifting. The country will pull itself out of the crisis without any help from the Church, that’s for sure. In the meantime, we can only grit our teeth and pray that eventually, the Archbishop sees the light.