Saturday, January 30, 2010

Church in bed with the Government

Rt Hon Ed Balls MP, Oona Stannard of the CES and Archbishop Vincent Nichols

Eric Hester quotes this from the Catholic Education Services of England and Wales in an article in the Catholic Herald:
This Government consists of people of great integrity, is pro-life, pro-family and so it is good news that it is putting before Parliament a scheme of compulsory sex education which will apply to every child in a maintained school in England, which includes all Catholic schools except independent schools.
Integrity, pro-life, pro-family, tend not to be words generally associated with this government, unfortunately Mr Hester doesn't actually cite where this comes from. It is in a Catholic Herald article by him entitled: How we lost control of sex education.
I really am concerned by the CES's attitudes to sex education, I am concerned by Bishop McMahon's words about not looking at the domestic lives of Catholic headteachers and civil partnerships. I pray that during the Ad Limina visit a few words might change the direction the CES is taking.
I hope that some people in the Vatican ask questions about the Church's cosying up to the Government, it seems as if we are rendering unto Caesar the things that are rightly God's.
There is the obvious question of the reception of Mr Blair, with no demands for a renunciation of his pro-gay, pro-abortion and anti-family stance. There is the issue of the adopotion agencies and the Church's supine backing down from any challenge. There is the issue of the head of the Cafod who actually shared a house with Paul Goggins, a government minister.
I hope someone will question the Church in England and Wales about its relationship with the government.


nickbris said...

On the contrary to what we are constantly being told by the "Garbage Press" and fifth column in the BBC this Government is probably the straightest and well meaning we have had for half a century.

Thirty years ago that Mad-Woman took charge and sowed the seeds for all the trouble we are now in.

Those born in'79 grew up through the madness and made their choice in '97.

Archbishop Nichol recognises what we all desperately need,an honest Government which actually cares for people including the unborn.

If we go back to that old Tory MADNESS then only GOD can help us.

The Bones said...

Cosying up to the Government is like trying to appease Hitler. The more we do it, the less seriously the Government will take us, until, finally, they will take us down.

The gates of Hell shall not prevail against the Church, but those in authority can take Her members closer to the gates of Hell.

pattif said...

Go here

for Ms. Stanard's performance before the committee considering the Children, Schools and Families Bill. For the best bit, scroll down to Q 189 from Nick Gibb.

The Catholic Education Service grows daily more closely to resemble the Holy Roman Empire, which, as every schoolboy know, was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire.

Pastor Juventus, in this weekend's Catholic Herald, has a suggestion for this weekend's collection for the CES: they should use it to buy a longer spoon.


Michael Clifton said...

I note that the Christian Peoples Alliance has notified one and all that the 3 main parties have exactly the same position on the new appalling proposals for sex education in schools which encourage open discussion on delicate matters. So far the CES has not objected to any measure proposed on these issues by our corrupt government.

Simon Platt said...

Perhaps this is off-topic, Nick, but I should be interested to know how you think you can support your comments, above.

Simon Platt said...

On reading the Hester article, it's clear that the quotation is actually the author's interpolation.

But I think it's probably justified. I have the strong impression that the CES is not on our side, or our children's.

They are, at least, linking to a government consultation (, of which I was not previously aware and to which I think faithful catholics should be encouraged to respond.

fidelisjoff said...

Well said Father. Isn't it bizarre that faithful Cathoilics have to battle with their own institutions and feel attacked rather than supported by those who make a good living from their "Catholicism". It takes just a few in the episcopal ranks to stand firm and true reform will happen. I pray God raises fearless bishops for E & W.

Michael Petek said...

I was talking to a friend of mine this morning - he's a father of eight children - about the Government's compulsory sex-ed proposals.

I told him that I wouldn't be surprised if schools were set to organise field trips to brothels.

Independent said...

If Mrs Thatcher was mad it is a great pity that her affliction did not infect her successors as Prime Minister. "The straightest (sic) and well meaning government" has faithfully followed the agenda of the British Humanist Association in the dechristianisation of the country. The great sanity of Mr Balls on education, Mistress Harman on the supposed rights of everyone except Christians, and the PM Dr Brown on the immorality since 2002 of piling up government debt, is obvious for all to see.Mr Roy Jenkins "civilised society" has come of age.

There are good Christians in all parties, but it is easy to identify the ones with the closest links to militant unbelief.

georgem said...

I pray to God that we haven't been given another Archbishop who craves a place at the Establishment top table.
Apart from one or two statements early on and a host of platitudes, he has been strangely silent on the serious issues that should concern every Catholic.
In his earlier life at Westminster Cathedral I recall he had a lot to say - I hesitate to day witter - without much substance.

me said...

fidelisjoff said

"It takes just a few in the episcopal ranks to stand firm and true reform will happen. I pray God raises fearless bishops for E & W."

I led a compromised Catholic's life for many years, going along with society's views and believing change was right and needed in these more 'learned' times (haha!).
Anyway, when the fruit of such a life-style began to rot me from the inside, only then did I seek God.
He gave his Mother to me, and strongly held views just fell away within weeks. I also have been given the desire to obey the Church, as it is so clear to me that this is God's will.

Our Lady truly illuminates your mind, when you draw close to her. I am no scholar of course,but my heart has been softened and my faith has increased.

There is one thing that keeps coming to my mind,and no-one is speaking of this on the blogs, but when I pray,for priests and Bishops, I feel led to pray for martyr's spirits to be formed within them. I don't know if this is just my vivid imagination, but I pray this intention anyway.

I know I repeat this, but everyone, please start a daily mystery of the rosary (even if just one decade), for our cleric's intentions, and kneel while you pray it, using blessed beads as the devil skedaddles at the sound of them clinking when in use (according to Fr Thwaites).

I promise it will change your whole being and outlook and give the strength soon to be needed to persevere. It also (in my experience) destroys sin and helps you fight temptations in your life. Also,we must grow in love for each other and the rosary helps one see another as Our Lady sees them.

epsilon said...

nulabour has already proved it does not want education for the masses - everything it has done up to now has been to dumb down and numb the population into mindless consumerism. As we all know, the bliars and their entourage seamlessly carried forward the mad-woman's agenda.

The people running schools in the UK today have sold their souls to the false god of double talk, e.g. 'every child matters'.

The truth is that neither the body nor the soul of any child matters in or outside the womb in a culture where fathers are alienated from mothers, mothers from their babies, the old from the young, the bishops from their Pope.

Norah said...

I hope that some people in the Vatican ask questions about the Church's cosying up to the Government,

The Vatican is not omnisicient; someone will have to inform the Vatican, with supporting documents, just how the Church is cosying up to the Government. There must be many clergy, who are concerned about this state of afairs, who have studied in Rome and have contacts who can ensure that the relevent comments and documents actually reach the people who can deal with this matter.

Fr said...

Our bishops and their agencies often appear to be blindly in love with the ones who hate them most. Balls and Co hate the truths that the Church teaches - it doesn't fit in with their masterplan for social engineering.

We don't have a collection for the CES here - we just pay the 'tax' through the annual demand/levy/assessment, or whatever it is called, from the diocese. CES is among the list of national bodies that each diocese pays a share for by one means or another. As income tax payers indirectly fund immoral medical procedures, so with parish levies - those who actually pay don't have a say.

gemoftheocean said...

Fidelisjoff: Exactly -- one expects threats from the outside, but from the inside? It's a stab through the heart.

I wish the pope would get busy removing bishops that need to be removed as well as so called other "leadership."

They "lead" all right - right over a CLIFF.

tempus putationis said...

How I wish that maintained Catholic schools would have the courage and integrity to advertise their teaching posts in the same unambiguous manner as the (private) Oratory School near Reading.
A recent ad for a Teacher of Religious Studies reads: '...The successful candidate will be a practising Roman Catholic with an outlook fully consonant with the teaching of the Church as expressed in the Catechism...'
But then, the Oratory School takes its fees directly from Catholic parents, and its inspiration from the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman, rather than from Ed Balls, Oona Stannard or (it hurts me to have to say) even Bishop Malcolm McMahon.

The Bones said...

Isn't China the country with the State Church? Maybe that is what the Government and certain individuals in the Church are after...

Unknown said...

I'm sorry, I don't agree about looking into the lives of people with Civil Partnerships in the external forum. Would you ask a Head Teacher what he does with his wife in the marital bed and then decide if he is suitable for his job? I doubt it. But I do agree that the person who wrote that this Government is pro-life and pro-family is wrong.

Fr Ray Blake said...

I would be very concerned about the possibility of a Catholic Headteacher turning up at a school event with her female "partner", or a married one with his girlfriend.

Jacobi said...

Now that the CES and Mr Balls are in full agreement I am sure that he will have no objections to children in Catholic schools being taught that the place for sex is within indissoluble sacramental marriage, between a man and a woman, that having children within marriage is a prime purpose of marriage, that homosexual practices are grave sins, that otherwise, chastity is called for, and that adultery, divorce, polygamy,and free union are all grave offences.
Any lingering doubts that Mr Balls (and perhaps members of CES, and indeed some bishops) might have, for instance that such views are out of date, will no doubt disappear when he (and they),learns that they are directly drawn form that great post-Vatican 11 document, the 1994 Catechism of the Catholic Church.

georgem said...

Cardinal Hume once mused that at the end of the 20th century we might be called clever but could we be called wise? You have to be clever to get a bishopric or to head an institution but where is the wisdom that encompasses the long view, not the fashion of the day? Does anyone know Oona Stannard’s qualifications for her status at the CES?
We who were brought up in orthodoxy are blessed. Not that we didn’t go wrong; many of us, including me, big time. But we knew what we had done, that it was wrong and that there had to be expiation.
The problem with the present government, Blair, Balls et al is that they know nothing pre-Thatcher. They were too young. They have no knowledge of history any more than Thatcher had. They are truly Thatcher’s children with all the skewed values.
If Mrs. Thatcher was mad, the Brits were even madder to keep voting her in. If there is such a thing as Thatcherism it is simply what the British people wished upon themselves and persist in doing so.
And so in the Catholic Church. Witness the attempts to scupper the Pope’s radical plans for renewal, either by howling them down, ignoring them, or by complete indifference.
David, I am sorry but civil/unmarried partnerships are in direct contravention to Church teaching, however much we might individually wish otherwise, however aggressive the push. We are enjoined to live the life of Christ. We all fail. It is we who must change, not the Church.

pelerin said...

Powerful homily today Father. Thank you.

gemoftheocean said...

Jacobi, while I agree with your statements 99%, I do think you've got it a bit wrong as regards a civil divorce in and of itself being a sin.

If a huband beats wife and children, or a woman for that matter turns out to be a drug crazed woman harming herself and children physically - a civil divorce is not out of line, assuming an effort has been made to do marriage counseling, etc. But the injuring party may never have truly had the faculty to intend to make a lasting marriage. I think in such situtations it's quite safe to seek a civil divorce.

It's not the divorce itself that's the sin -- it would be an attempt to remarry without benefit of an annulment (or live in sin, for that matter) of a party.

Millions of good people have divorced and not sinned in the process.

I would not hold a divorce against someone, unless they remarried without getting an annulment first, or if they were living in sin.

What's a person to do if a spouse has simply walked out on someone? Someone who perhaps never had intent to marry in a mature way without knowing all the duties and expectations of entering the marriage in good faith.

Should a woman HAVE to stay with a man whom she later finds out has NO intention of wanting children? Should a man have to stay with a woman who starts harming the children?

The "state" DOES have some interest in these things, and legally under the state law it will benefit the injured parties to get divorced.

And I'm sure you MUST realize that before the church grants an annulment, they will insist on a civil divorce having taken place.

Michael Petek said...

Gemoftheocean, it's called "judicial separation" in which case it can be morally licit, or "divorce with leave to remarry", in which case it isn't.

Permanent separation is the right of a victim of adultery, provided that only one party is guilty of it, whether his/her own or that of the spouse.

Temporary separation is licit if but only as long as either spouse exposes the other or any of the children to prospective physical or moral danger, or makes the common life unduly difficult.

Physical danger entails a criminal offence. Undue difficulty in common life is precluded as long as the spouses are pulling their weight in good faith in doing the essential duties of marriage: guarding their fidelity and attending to their mutual - and their children's - physical and moral welfare.

Last week I met a friend of mine I hadn't seen for years. His younger brother's wife is divorcing him and taking him to the cleaners, having been seduced into the bad company of divorce enthusiasts who persuaded her about all the goodies she'd get if she kicked hubby out.

I have to say, in my ideal universe she'd walk away as a desertress with only her personal effects.

Jocobi said...

Gemoftheocean, I don't disagree with the points you make. I am no theologian, only a mere scientist. In my comment I was deliberately drawing from an authoratative source, to make the point (and I'm kicking myself for having missed out contraception).

We can only deal pastorally with a situation in the context of a true understanding of the law of God
and as you say, civil divorce comes before annulment proceedings.

One possibility, however, should not be ruled out in such moral dilemas, and that is celibacy. And is that so shocking?
After all the Church demands it of our clergy and religious,and those of a homosexual nature. Others have it thrust upon them, widows, injured, prisoners, the lonely, and so on. It is not uncommon?

Crux Fidelis said...

"the Church demands it of our clergy and religious,and those of a homosexual nature"

Doesn't the Church demand it of all who are not in the state of matrimony?

Independent said...

Looking back over recent history one must remember that the Abortion Act of 1967 was proposed by a Liberal, David Steele, and passed with the support of the then Labour Home Secretary, Roy Jenkins. The practical abolition of any laws against pornography was also the work of Jenkins, who quite rightly decrimilised homosexual practice, but left the door open for it being approved and it would seem enjoined. All these changes took place in the 1960's before the Heath, second Wilson, Callaghan and Thatcher governments.

The present problems of church and state, the rise of the permissive society, and the disassociation of Christian and secular state morality date from the Wilson Labour government of the 1960's.

Independent said...

Further to my last comment - It was during the 1970's when I believe David Owen was Health Minister in the Second Wilson Labour Government that the practice of offering contraception to the under -16's without telling their parents was established.

CPKS said...

Quote from the BBC article: 'The Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams warned that the "continuing systematic humiliation" of MPs threatened to do irreversible damage to public confidence in Britain's democracy.'

I just thought that some of you might have missed that little gem.

The Lord’s descent into the underworld

At Matins/the Office of Readings on Holy Saturday the Church gives us this 'ancient homily', I find it incredibly moving, it is abou...