Simon Parke  
Click here for Abbot Peter Click here for Simon's blog Click here for Simon's books Click here for Simon's consultancy Click here for Simon's retreats
      Cover of One-Minute Mystic   Cover of One Minute Meditation   Cover of Conversations with Vincent Van Gogh

Christianity? This is what I'd like

Posted by Simon Parke, 13 February 2017, 6.07pm

Another Synod, another mad debate about sexuality.

Welcome to la-la land…but not the musical.

Mad Item No.1 in response to mad bishop’s report:

‘Who can and cannot put their willy where they wish to; and which holes can receive sexual pleasure, and how, and with whom?’

Sarcasm alert: I’m sure this is exactly what Jesus was talking about in the Sermon on the Mount.


He offered what were apparently some beautiful attitudes.

But obviously what he really meant – let the reader understand - were some very particular rules around sexual pleasure.

(The cock references were clearly lost in translation.)

Where to begin?

Deep breath.

I heard something about ‘the African churches’ on the radio this morning.

As if this was somehow relevant.

‘I know it’s mad, totally ridiculous – but you have to remember… the African churches.’


I remember being asked/told to collude with a very unpleasant aunt when young; and I’m feeling the same now.

The thing is, I don’t tend to encourage people to collude with unhealthy relationships in a therapeutic situation; and I won’t be starting now.

Collusion with ill-health is living death.

Do you know what I’d like?

I mean, it’s crazy…but, well, we all have to dream.

I’d like it if the Christianity offered the religion of Jesus rather than a religion about Jesus.

That I believe was the original idea.

So a religion of things like, oh, I don’t know, trust, awareness, rage, courage, compassion and prayer. That probably catches most of it.

Oh, and the validity of love.

Instead of some sad list of do’s and don’ts invented by inadequate men, a list of tick-box right and wrong doctrines…because it beats growing up.

I’d say, aim for the attitudes, create space in your struggling self for those attitudes, the work of a life time…and let the doctrines look after themselves.

But of course we won’t do that.

Hah! Some fucking hope.

Doctrines are easier, requiring no self-reflection. They baptise the power of small people, damaged people…they protect me from personal growth as I hide behind God’s utterly favourite pastime: doctrine!

(And disappointing, Simon - very disappointing, I’m not angry, just disappointed - that you used the word ‘fucking’...I’ll pray for you.’)

For fuck’s sake…for God’s sake.

The religion of Jesus, not a religion about Jesus.

I’d go to that church…I’d live their creed.

P.S. After this piece was written, the Bishops and Laity in Synod sided with the madness; but the Clergy, by a small margin, voted against it.

This meant that the madness was, on this occasion, defeated.

Cherish the moment.


More blog posts  


March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

December 2017

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

Click here to follow Simon's blog on RSS

RSS 2.0