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Daily Archives: 3 Feb 2017
A leading theological college that trains priests for the Church of England has apologised after it hosted a service to mark LGBT history month that referred to God as “the Duchess”.
Student priests at Westcott House in Cambridge organised the evensong service on Tuesday in the college chapel. Advertised as a “Polari evening prayer in anticipation of LGBT+ history month”, it was described as a “liturgical experiment”. Polari is slang used by some gay people.
A prayer referred to the “Fantabulosa fairy” and ended: “Praise ye the Duchess. The Duchess’s name be praised.” Psalm 19 was reworded to refer to “O Duchess, my butchness”.
The service was “an attempt at queering the liturgy of evening prayer, locating the queer within the compass of faith, and recovering for the Christian tradition a sense of its own intrinsically subversive jouissance,” said a printed explanation.
The organisers said that just as Jesus welcomed the outcast, “Today we might follow in the footsteps of his daring, boldly and outrageously welcoming the Queer (both human and divine) in a way never before attempted.”
The college principal, the Rev Canon Chris Chivers, said the service was “hugely regrettable”. It used “a form of liturgy which was not an authorised act of worship in line with the college’s procedures,” he said. “I fully recognise that the contents of the service are at variance with the doctrine and teaching of the Church of England, and that is hugely regrettable.”
The service had caused some members of the college “considerable upset and disquiet”. Chivers said he had spoken to the organisers and was “tightening the internal mechanisms of the house to ensure this never happens again”. The college hoped “to make a creative contribution to setting a different tone for the debate on human sexuality in the church. But this was not it,” he said.
Ya think….??? Ya. Think?
Researchers at MIT revealed Friday they were still unable to locate mankind’s innate moral goodness, despite a $20 million federal government grant to scour every cell of the human body to locate the rumored decency with which every human is born.
During a recent interview with a national science journal, researchers intently stared into a high-powered microscope, furrowing their brows as they looked over yet another piece of the human body at the cellular level. But they remained unsuccessful in their attempt to find proof that every person is born morally upright.
“We thought we found it a few months back, but that turned out to be a dark, sinful nature infecting the tissue we were working with,” head researcher Dr. Flynn Albietz told reporters. “Same results we’ve always gotten.”
“We’re staying positive and we believe we’ll find the inherent goodness everyone supposedly has in their hearts pretty soon. It’s got to be in there somewhere—Gandhi said so, after all,” he added.
At publishing time, MIT’s research department had applied for a further $20 million in federal funding to search for the elusive goodness within mankind, stating the project had proven to be much more difficult than they had originally anticipated.
They won’t find it because it doesn’t exist.
In a bid to better understand the community surrounding the popular megachurch, Lifevision Church leaders reportedly conducted a survey among neighborhood residents over the past week, asking which historic Christian doctrines the church could jettison in order to get people in the door on Sunday mornings.
The short survey, administered by a team of door-to-door volunteers, asked residents how long they had lived in the area, what religion they identified with if any, and which Christian beliefs they found abhorrent, “so that we can best decide which teachings to part with in order to pander to non-believers.”
“Which of the following historic positions can we huck out the window to cater to your sensibilities?” the survey reads. “Please check all that apply.” The one-page questionnaire then lists over thirty orthodox Christian positions that the church is happy to disown at a moment’s notice, including salvation by Christ alone, the holiness of God, the deity of Christ, a traditional view of marriage, and dozens more.
In an interview, head visioneering pastor Mark Lyle told a local news station he’s excited for the opportunity to scuttle core doctrines of the Christian faith “for the sake of the gospel.”
“Lots of churches talk about ‘essentials’—what’s essential to us is getting people in the door,” Lyle said. “There are literally tons of indispensable doctrines we are happy to fling by the wayside, should they make you feel uncomfortable. Just let us know.”
Or, in other words
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Kennen Sie das Altarbild der Schlosskirche in Wittenberg? Luther sitzt im Kreis der Jünger mit Jesus am Tisch beim letzten Abendmahl, neben ihm der Drucker seiner Bibelübersetzung. Die Botschaft ist klar: Martin Luther hat seine Lehre aus erster Hand: Sie ist göttlichen Ursprungs! Ganz ähnlich die Suggestion des Logos für das „Lutherjahr 2017“ fast 500 Jahre später: Unter Luthers Porträt steht der Satz: „Am Anfang war das Wort – Martin Luther“. Luther, die Lichtgestalt, die uns die Freiheit bringt! Über Jahrhunderte wurde Luther als deutscher Herkules gefeiert, religiös und immer wieder auch nationalistisch. Die zahllosen Strassen, Häuser und Plätze, die seinen Namen tragen, zeugen davon. Die Werbung für das „Lutherjahr 2017“, vom deutschen Bundesparlament mit vielen Millionen Euro finanziert, wird auch die Schweiz erreichen. Manches deutet dabei darauf hin, dass die Tourismusindustrie gegenüber denen, die Luthers Schriften wirklich lesen, den Sieg davon getragen hat.
Das provoziert. Und so werden gerade in Deutschland die Stimmen immer lauter, die auf dunkle Seiten des grossen Reformators hinweisen: Luther der streitsüchtige Polterer, der Fundamentalist, Feind jeder Toleranz, der Judenhasser, der vom Teufel verfolgte Theologe der Angst, der seinen Fürsten rät, die Bauern niederzumetzeln. Luther, die Quelle allen Übels. Das Pendel schlägt um, und fast schon könnte er einem leidtun, der arme Mönch aus Wittenberg, der zu seiner eigenen Überraschung zum Medienstar geworden ist.
Etc. By the inestimable Peter Opitz.