Friday, 20 November 2009

The Desperate Archbishop

Archbishop Rowan Williams is a deeply spiritual man and no mean theologian, yet his understanding of what it means to be united in One Church is naive and simplistic to the point of being shocking. As someone else has said, "what planet is he on?" I have great respect for him, but, as I have found with other excellent Anglican writers and thinkers, there are a few gaping holes in his theological garments. Ultimately this is because he cannot think with The Church. I'm afraid it has to be said that where there is a break with the Petrine Office there is a lack of perception as to the truths of the Faith. His appeal to the Roman Catholic Church and to the Pope to think again about women priests and homosexuality has a ring of desperation about it, but it also shows how restoration of unity is impossible with those Anglicans who agree with him.
These things are not incidentals. His poor grasp of the importance of the Sacrament of Holy Orders and his inability to see how the moral teaching of the Church, based on Holy Scripture and Sacred Tradition is part of that "seamless garment" which is the Catholic Faith makes me ask how long this (Anglican) situation can continue. This is a sad spectacle. Let's hope that good will come out of his meeting with the Pope - the successor of Peter, and that the light will begin to dawn in those areas of his mind and heart where there are shadows and poor understanding.
This may seem patronising, and I don't mean it to be. I am simply trying to understand how such a wise and holy man is "unable to see the wood for the trees".

1 comment:

  1. What a beautiful post Father, so full of compassion. This is the first respectful post I have read about the Archbishop, although I have read purely neutral ones too. It helps me to see the wood for the trees and not get defensive on behalf of our separated brethren, whom I feel are not always treated with Christian charity by some catholics.