Friday, 29 July 2016



‘PM Theresa May is no Christian…’ Wot?! Nonsense! She, a Vicar’s daughter? Must be a believer OK, no? A supposition that betrays a dismal ignorance of the Church of England. To comprehend why Tory Theresa is unholy, dig this:

The C of E, the national Church of the English race, is not uniform. Since the Reformation she divided into three main strands or branches: Evangelical, Broad Church and High Church/Anglo-Catholics. Like a three-headed monster, each head speaks with its separate and distinct theological and doctrinal voice.

First, Evangelicals. Clergy and laity whose Qur’an is the Bible. Evangelicals have no time for liturgy, mystery and sacraments – baptism and Holy Communion excepted. Many clerics shun clerical sartorial dress and even the dog collar but often play guitar. For them the teaching of the Word is all. The pulpit, the sermon, not the altar, got it?

Second, Broad Churchmen. This is the wishy-washy middle. (Cricket-playing Vicars bring that out, perhaps.) They often wear grey suits and shirts. Sing tedious hymns. Doctrinally, they are liberals or latitudinarians. Hold unorthodox or heretical views. Like not believing in the Virgin Birth and the Incarnation. Or thinking them unimportant or passe’. Sin they never preach about. A dull, unexciting bunch.

Third, the High Church brigade. Liturgy and sacraments are their forte. Since the 19^th century Oxford Movement, Anglo-Catholicism is another designation. ‘Smells and bells’ allude derogatorily to their passion/obsession for incense, candles and liturgical niceties. Keen on old-fashioned gear like birettas and cassocks. Sacred Tradition, the teaching of the Holy Fathers, is paramount, not the Bible. Notably, Anglo-Catholics include a high number of effete, camp characters. I wonder why…

Yet, this tripartite division is a bit obsolete. Bishop Graham Leonard, whose sins include ordaining me to the priesthood, said the dividing line or battle in the Church is now between liberal-secular humanists – wimps or renegades who have embraced secular culture and its shibboleths - and conservatives or traditional Christians. Partly true. Evangelicals who are liberals pay lip service to the Bible but it’s just words. Panjandrums like the Mr Bean-lookalike Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, exemplify this. When Justin bleats, it is like listening to a New Statesman editorial. No hint that he follows biblical truth.

So-called ‘Affirming Anglo-Catholics’ are no different. They hug the gaudy Spirit of the Age, while hiding themselves behind clouds of incense. Rowan Williams, formerly of Canterbury, is a prime example. He used to hear confessions in Oxford but…how can you absolve a sinner unless you believe in what the Bible calls sins? Williams does not. Moreover, since the ordination of women many Anglo-Catholics have ‘poped’. Gone over to Rome, where their heart always was. Not necessarily happily. A former parishioner, now a Roman Catholic, tells me that she suffers the ‘indignity’ of having to receive Communion from a becassocked female, a ‘Minister of the Eucharist’!

So, what kind of religion did PM Theresa imbibe at her Vicar father’s feet? No doubt dad was a good man but…what kind of churchman was he? Haven’t a clue but this I know: the daughter’s political conduct evinces no Biblical faith. As clear as eggs are eggs. Theresa is no saint – not even a simple Christian!

I suppose a Kierkegaard would disagree. The knight of faith, the true Christian does not have to show it outwardly. It is a purely inner matter. I revere the Great Dane hugely but this is too individualistic. The Christian faith is embodied in the Church, a gathered, collective reality, not a merely personal affair. Besides, Kierkegaard scourged his own Lutheran state church ferociously exactly because it paid only lip service to the Gospel. His stupendous ‘Attack on Christendom’ should be compulsorily reading for the lukewarm and pusillanimous C of E clergy.

Unholy Theresa is not unique, however. Unfair to single her out – except that she is now (allegedly) leading Britain. So, consider the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. Sadiq seems a devout Muslim. Attends the mosque, prays, keeps Ramadan and the dietary laws of Islam. I bet he never tastes wine or pork. Sounds exemplary but…does he introduces notions like Riba’, usury – a key prohibition in the Qur’an – when he addresses City of London bankers and financial services? Does he ever mention Islam’s teachings on personal and sexual morality? As dumb as a fish on those.

Of course, Sadiq is the mayor of all Londoners, not just Muslims or a sect. Correct but that restates the problem: political leaders like him and May segregate their faith from their civic and public duties. That is why Sadiq is acceptable, why he was elected and is accepted as a ‘decent, fine Muslim’. He doesn’t ‘do God’ in the public arena. He has learnt his lesson…The Establishment loves him. Sadiq is a good boy!

You may argue this is how it should be. Religion and politics should never mix – this is the rigid French dogma of ‘laicite’. And of Ataturk’s Turkey. Odd. Because it means that the dictates of that Being ‘than which no greater can be conceived’ are irrelevant to this life – and the next. Senseless.

Theresa is a noble Christian name. Born by marvellous women like St Teresa of Avila and St Theresa of Lisieux. I pray that these saintly persons may inspire Unholy Theresa to see light and change her unworthy ways and politics. Implausible? Yes, but if a priest does not believe in miracles who does?

Revd Frank Julian Gelli


** follow on Twitter (Twitter Account not yet Authorized)
| ** friend on Facebook (#)
| ** forward to a friend (

Copyright © Fr Frank Gelli
Email Marketing Powered by MailChimp
** unsubscribe from this list (
| ** update subscription preferences (

No comments: