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Archbishop Cranmer #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

‘Give me the child for the first seven years and I will give you the man’ is a Jesuit maxim attributed to Saint Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus. He probably never said it, or if he did, he almost certainly said: ‘Give me the boy for the first seven years and I will show you the man’. The quote is also attributed to Aristotle, but in a sense the source doesn’t matter, for by its attribution to both one of the greatest spiritual minds and one of the greatest philosophical thinkers ever to have existed, it moves beyond cultural constructivism to transcendent truth: the workings of the mind were designed to be subject to time and space.

And into that time and space comes children’s education, by which process their moral, cultural and religious values are inculcated and their politics are moulded – from the history lesson which scorns the ethics of empire to the singing of ‘I vow to thee my country’ in the daily act of collective worship, schools are places where political perspectives become truths and religious exposure becomes morality. There is, of course, much debate concerning the proper aims of education and the right balance (should such a thing exist) between the prescriptive statutes of governments and the freedoms of parents and particular religious groups, but in a liberal democracy there must be the means to impart the knowledge of citizenship which is deemed necessary to sustain that liberal democracy, or the state ceases generation-by-generation to be either liberal or democratic.

Relationship and Sex Education (formerly Sex and Relationship Education) is one of those subjects which straddles the government-parent-religion tensions of responsibility and provision. For some, it is the task of parents to teach sexual morality and reify good relationship; for others, it is the joint responsibility of parents and religious communities, with a civic minimum imparting the essential facts of biology and social reality. For others still, mindful of parental delinquency and religious prejudice in this regard, it is fundamentally a function of the state to ensure that all children are taught the knowledge and life skills they will need to develop healthy relationships and stay safe while having sex.

The question and tension which then arises is related to age-appropriateness: at what point does the scientific naming of private body parts or discussion about where babies come from become consideration of emotional and physical changes; and then at what point those changes become discussions about different kinds of families or the differences between boys and girls; and then at what point those differences become discussions about engaging in sex, contraception or condoms, homosexuality and transgender people. And what about abortion? And then there is sexual experimentation, orgasms, group sexual experiences, oral sex, masturbation…

Would it surprise you to know that discussions about transgender are deemed appropriate for eight-year-olds?

One state primary school in Birmingham, where the children are predominantly Muslim, introduced RSE lessons to promote LGBT equality. The Guardian reported in January that the programme includes “the welcoming of people of any race, colour or religion and those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender”. There is, of course, nothing wrong with welcoming people, but what is the age-appropriate way of explaining lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender to a four-year-old? What are books entitled ‘Mommy, Mama and Me‘ or ‘King & King‘ designed to inculcate about the morality of same-sex relationships and same-sex marriages? Birmingham school LGBT Muslim protestOne parent Fatima Shah is quoted: “Children are being told it’s OK to be gay, yet 98% of children at this school are Muslim. It’s a Muslim community. [Mr Moffat (assistant headteacher)] said all parents are on board with it, but the reality is, no parents are on board with it.” She added: “We have nothing against Mr Moffat – we are as British as they come. We respect the British values… but the problem is, he is not respecting our ethos as a community. We don’t send our children to school to learn about LGBT. We send them to school to learn maths, science and English.”

Andrew Moffat, who is gay and was appointed MBE in 2017 for services to education, responded: “I’m just teaching children from an early age that there are different families out there and, let’s not forget, that in some schools there are children with two mums, so I see it that they’re not being taught anything. All they’re seeing is their family is being accepted. We want all children in Birmingham to know that their family is normal; that their family is accepted and welcomed in schools.”

Last week Mr Moffat gave in, and subjugated the ethos of his school to the religious ethos of the majority Muslim parents: all LGBT lessons have been stopped. He did this because hundreds of those parents decided to withdraw their children from the lessons, which is their legal right. But what if RSE were to become mandatory, as the Government intends? What option would parents then have if they felt their children were being taught matters of sex and sexuality which they deemed to be age-inappropriate? “We are not a bunch of homophobic mothers,” Fatima Shah said. “We just feel that some of these lessons are inappropriate. Some of the themes being discussed are very adult and complex and the children are getting confused. They need to be allowed to be children rather than having to constantly think about equalities and rights.”

The themes being discussed are complex for adults, too, because it matters of sexuality and gender it isn’t at all clear where nature end and nurture begins. And that is the essence of the grievance these Muslim parents have: they feel their children are not simply being education in the sociological fact of homosexuality and transgender, but inculcated – or ‘indoctrinated’, as one parent put it – into the moral virtue of such expressions of identity. Now, you may believe that homosexuality is as innate as heterosexuality, and transgender is simply another increment on the spectrum of human diversity, but for others the causal debate is more nuanced, not least because there is conflicting evidence from eminent scientists and psychologists on both sides of the divide. While some favour the ‘nature’ explanation based on biology or genetics, others incline to the ‘nurture’ theory, based on the psychological reaction to upbringing and environment, which obviously includes education.

The Bible’s understanding of biology (and, indeed, that of the Qur’an) is a world apart from modern studies, and theologians are as divided as scientists. Some insist that cultural factors contribute in psycho-sexual development, embracing Freudian psychological theory, for example, which asserts that homosexual orientation is a consequence of the failure to identify with the same-sex parent; that a physical or emotional distance between the child and the same-sex parent results in a failure to be able to identify with one’s own sex. This results in a same-sex deficit, which the homosexual is unconsciously trying to repair by creating emotional and sexual relationships with people of the same sex. It is not so much a moral degeneracy but an emotional immaturity, and one therefore capable of being healed through therapy.

This is the view of the great majority of Muslims, and also of a great many Christians and Jews. The cause of homosexual orientation being somehow a combination of both nature and nurture – a psychogenetic fusion – would therefore be susceptible to educational inculcation. If the ethos of a school is toward ‘tolerance’ of homosexuality and transgender as ‘natural’, and that ethos is reified by teachers who impart notions of equal validity and moral parity, then what the Bible or Qur’an happen to say becomes irrelevant: British values trump God’s created order. If a child feels a bit gender-neutral or trans one day, why not explore androgyny further? Why not try living as the opposite sex for a while? It might be fun. It certainly makes you a bit more interesting and gets you noticed.

There is no easy solution to this: the government-parent-religion tensions will persist in state education until one party asserts its dominance – which appears to be imminent – at which point the other parties will respond or react. While reason demands the serious critical consideration of scientific studies, and certainly those which are concerned with the possibility that same-sex preference and transgender may be genetically programmed, not all innate tendencies in children are either good or desirable. But that is too nuanced a debate in this febrile atmosphere. It is to be noted that in the hundreds of parents who have withdrawn their children from LGBT lessons in this school, sporting their banners declaring ‘Education not Indoctrination’, ‘My Child My Right’ and ‘Say No to sexualisation of children’, they have not been condemned as homophobes or bigots by LGBT lobby groups. If these had been Christian parents, however, no doubt Amanda Spielman would have issued an instant press release, and Peter Tatchell would have been there in a flash.

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Martin #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

(=After Notre Dam caught fire=)

Guglielmo Marinaro: It is a tragedy that this beautiful cathedral, in which people have been worshipping God for centuries, has been so seriously damaged.

Martin: I doubt they ever worshipped God there, and they ejected the true believers from their land long ago.

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Martin #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

The Bible speaks for God, it is the very words of God, breathed out by Him. It says nothing of 'gay persons' because they don't exist. The Bible does condemn sexual behaviour between two persons of the same gender. The Bible does define marriage as between a man and a woman. Thus I can say that a so called marriage between two women is not a marriage and sex between two such persons is sin.

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Martin #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

So God doesn't know about sexuality? I think you're referring to your god again. Sexuality simply doesn't exist. Seems to me that if Jesus were talking about divorce then, if 'same sex marriage' existed, it would apply to all marriage. I think He didn't refer to it because it doesn't exist. If you can't consummate the marriage it isn't a true marriage.

Homosexuality is comparable to adultery and paedophilia, it is just a form of sexual sin.

I don't turn away those Jesus welcomes, it is quite clear that homosexual, like thieves and drunkards, are not welcomed.

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
(I Corinthians 6:9-11 [ESV])

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Peter Watson #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

All men are sinners and all are called to repent. Sex outside of marriage is a sin. Marriage is between one man and one woman. You can try and re-write creation and twist scripture to your own destruction but because a man is born a sinner does not mean he has to practice it until he has no longer the ability to stop.

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Peter Watson & David #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

David: Rejoice for Romania is about to have a national referendum as to whether their national constitution should be amended to state that marriage can only be between a man and a woman.
That's what I call a proper democracy. The contrast with Cameron who, on the eve of the election, stated that he would not be redefining marriage, but then went ahead and did it, is enormous. It starkly illustrates how little respect our political class has for democracy, which is why they have found it so easy historically, and even now, to surrender it to the EU whilst ignoring us, the people. Meanwhile as Romania sets about affirming its democracy and Christian culture, the atheist Liberals and Socialists of Brussels are greatly agitated at such an upholding of traditional Christian faith and practice.
Thank God for the brave Visegrad nations of the east, who having seen close at hand, if not experienced directly themselves, centuries of totalitarianism from first Islam and then Soviet Russia, are now determined to protect their democracies and Christian cultural inheritances from today's secular forces demanding their compliant obedience.

Fred Uttlescay: It only affects gays, bigot. Why shouldn’t they have equality?

Peter Watson : They have equality before Christ - in that they may repent of their sins and be saved from the wrath of God. In this, all men are equal. Male/female/Jew/Greek. In Christ all are equal. Outside of Christ all are lost.

Fred Uttlescay: So no problem about gays being married then. They can just say sorry Jesus old sport and go to heaven.

Peter Watson: Marriage is between a man and a woman. End of. You can pretend of course, just as you pretend there is no God.

Fred Uttlescay: Or just as you pretend there is!

Peter Watson: Who made you?? Where did matter come from? Why do you think your ideas are worth considering? Where will you go when you die? What makes right from wrong? Wake up Fred before you spend eternity in Hell.

Fred Uttlescay: Who made you?? ............. My mum and dad.
Where did matter come from?...............No idea. Should I ask a desert tribe or simply make something up and put it in a book?
Where will you go when you die? ...........A crematorium, then back to the soil.
What makes right from wrong? ...............We decide. Those that can't decide for themselves are very dangerous psychopaths.
spend eternity in Hell............I will no longer exist, so can't spend an eternity anywhere.

Peter Watson: Then you are truly without hope and hopeless but as you don't even understand that if as you wrote "We decide" right from wrong as I have decided that you are wrong, then you are truly insane. And blocked. I have shaken the dust off my feet and stopped casting pearls at swine. Good bye Fred. And remember - when you meet God you will not be able to utter the defense of "but you never told me" - people witnessed and witness to you, the Bible is in English for you and the creation screams Creator at you. Good bye Fred.

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Peter Watson #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

Sid Rumpo: Ah yes, the good old days when homosexuals were reviled, jailed and tortured with drugs. We are no longer savages, which is why it is perfectly fine for a rainbow flag to be on display in a church.

Peter Watson: Tortured by guilt for their sins perhaps. Hence the Gospel - for all are sinners but sinners who refuse to repent are unsavable. And by the way you are blocked.

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Martin #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

Martin: That article is utter nonsense. Homosexuality is not innate, it is a chosen behaviour.

DavidS: When did you choose to be heterosexual?

Martin: I chose not to sin with a person who was not my wife.

DavidS: When did you choose you were going to be exclusively attracted to women?

Martin: The ultimate pathetic argument. I suggest you reread my last post.

DavidS: Typical avoidance tactics from you - do you have a phobia to answering questions? Perhaps an allergy? Does answering questions make you come out in a rash which is why you use avoidance and distraction tactics?
When did you choose you were going to be exclusively attracted to women?

Martin: Again
Read what I wrote above. The basis on which you ask your question is wrong, making the question meaningless.

DavidS: I see, going out of your way to avoid answering the question, because you have no real answer.
I suspect the honest answer (if you were ever able to give one) would be that you didn't choose because your sexuality is just a natural part of who you are, just as homosexuality is a natural part of who a person is. Or perhaps you haven't chosen, and are ignoring your true sexuality which might explain a lot. Studies have shown those who strongly oppose homosexuality often do it out of self-loathing and non-acceptance of their own true sexuality.

Martin: David
Can you show me where Jesus spoke of sexuality? Of course you can't, He didn't because it doesn't exist. He spoke of a man and woman marrying and becoming one, yet He never spoke of gay marriage. He knew that homosexuality is nothing more that sexual sin, like adultery or paedophilia, a rejection of God's design for mankind.
There is only one reason you speak of sexuality, and that is to excuse sin. There are no loving monogamous homosexual relationships, just people satisfying their lust.
So carry on with your little god and your little jesus that you have created. But remember this, one day you will have to stand before the real Lord Jesus Christ who will judge you on what you have done. On that day He will tell you that He never knew you.

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Archbishop Cranmer #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

Bishop blocked by Twitter – for telling the truth about sex abuse in the Roman Catholic Church

That notorious purveyor of hate and guile, the Rt Rev’d Dr Gavin Ashenden, has been blocked by Twitter. Actually, the tense is wrong: he was blocked by Twitter, but recanted and deleted and is now restored. The allegation of purveying hate and guile is also wrong: it is hard to imagine a more amiable, gentle and honest soul tweeting into the cybersphere. But ‘hate’ is what Twitter accused him of, and so he was ordered to recant and repent on pain of eternal excommunication. Deletion was insufficient: he had to prostrate himself in humility at the feet of the Twitter Pontiff, and beg to be restored to his ministry.

Bishop Gavin spent the day considering whether he would do either or both. He mulled and prayed and anguished for many an hour: should he recant and beg? Would he come to regret his decision and recant his recantation? He sought fellowship and wisdom among friends, and decided that since the article he had commented upon had been written some days ago, this particular tweet was not performing to much continued purpose. He considered that deleting it and continuing to foster public conversation on behalf of the kingdom was the better course. He then discovered that on pressing the ‘delete’ button, his Twitter excommunication was immediately withdrawn. He was restored without further pleading.

His tweet was a link to an article written by the Rev’d Dr Jules Gomes, which concerned sex abuse in the Roman Catholic Church. The article is fairly robust in its research, though quite unremarkable in its assertions: it is surely a matter of biological fact that the scandal engulfing the Roman Catholic Church is primarily one of homosexual clergy preying on teenage boys. It is not paedophilia (though the term is often applied in the vernacular), but ephebophilia – that is, sexual interest in mid-to-late adolescents. Since the Roman clerical hierarchy is exclusively male, and altar boys are boys, and seminarians are young men, it is surely not only a matter of biological fact but also of irrefutable logic that the scandal is exactly as Gavin Ashenden described it: not paedophilia, but predominantly one of homosexual lust.

He had previously written about gay predators himself, but this appears to be an unmentionable truth on Twitter: a violation of their rules against ‘hateful conduct’. Bishop Gavin shared no ‘hate’, and yet the infallible edict descended in order to censor him and demand conformation to Twitter’s moral orthodoxy. It is hard to discern where this might stop. Is it ‘hate’ to quote Moses (Lev 18:22)? Is it ‘hate’ to quote St Paul (Rom 1:26f)? Is it ‘hate’ to tell people they are sinners and need saving? Is it ‘hate’ to tweet ‘offensive’ extracts of the Bible? Would Twitter block Jesus?

If, as Dr Gomes avers (with supporting links), 80 per cent of the sex abuse in the Roman Catholic Church is of a homosexual nature, and only 96 of 4,329 priest offenders were classified as true paedophiles, how can it be ‘hate’ to tweet this? He writes: “The US bishops even admitted that ‘an understanding of the crisis is not possible’ without speaking of ‘the presence of homosexually oriented priests’. Criminologist Margaret Smith, who worked on the John Jay report, insisted that: ‘The majority of abusive acts were homosexual in nature.'”

One cannot be too critical of paedophilia, but this is not that. Surely one has to be careful when speaking of sexual abuse lest one point the finger at the wrong group? Don’t we need to properly define our terms so we are clear what we are talking about and whom we are criticising?

Was it the phrase “predominately a gay crime” which caused the Twitter police to block Bishop Gavin? It can hardly be “homosexual lust”, unless Twitter is of the view that homosexuals don’t experience lust as much as heterosexuals or bisexuals do. How would they measure such things?

Either way, this is not ‘hate speech’: it is simply factually correct. It is a crime to engage in sexual activity with minors (fact), but around 80 per cent of the recorded instances of sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church were committed by homosexual adults on pubescent or post pubescent boys (fact). It is, therefore, predominantly a gay crime. Or perhaps the Twitter police were being grammatically pedantic? People may be gay, but a crime may not: is ‘gay crime’ a juxtaposition which offends against the public mood of progressive tolerance? Must it be censored to avoid the public paying attention to the more problematic areas of gay culture?

By censoring this, does Twitter not become complicit in the perpetuation of sex abuse in the Roman Catholic Church? At the very least, does it not become an impediment to academic inquiry and wider understanding? And by censoring Bishop Gavin Ashenden, are they not defaming him as a ‘hate preacher’? This erstwhile Chaplain-to-the-Queen has been found guilty of threatening or harassing people on the basis of their sexual orientation, and from this judgment there is no appeal; no natural justice. He must re-learn what virtue is, and what moral goods are, and only then may he resume his role in the social-media order. In the tensions of moral conflict, where compatibility is difficult if not impossible, it is orthodox Christians (and Jews and Muslims?) who are forced either to re-think their way through some painful choices, or to work out a strategy for evading these choices. Yet it is only by raising and openly debating these moral tensions and conflicts that public morality acquires an important dimension of its content. Shouldn’t Twitter be facilitating that conversation, rather than hurling ‘hate’ at every slightly contentious use of terminology?

Who reported Bishop Gavin? That’s the interesting question. Is it not preferable to take up a matter of dispute with your brother rather than run to the Twitter police and demand his suppression and restriction? What are you afraid of? Truth?

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Martin #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

TS (Unami): And likewise we don't want to call something a sin that is not a sin.
I'm not going to say that left-handed people are sinning for how God made them -- even though the church once thought being left-handed was a sin.
God made people in a *wide variety* of ways, and innate orientation is merely one of the differences that He delighted to vary in human beings. One's orientation is not a sin -- gay or straight.

Martin: There are no orientations, they choose to sin and call it an orientation to cover their sin.

TS (unami): Please consult a medical professional about your concerns.

Martin: A good, honest 'medical practitioner' would agree with me.

TS (unami): So go ask them.

Martin: I don't need to, I know the truth. It is you who are displaying ignorance and prejudice.

JD: Wuss.

Martin: Why would I ask the ignorant a question they cannot answer?

JD: Remember that when you find yourself in a life-or-death situation laying on a table in the ER. You'll be eating those words, if you live that is.

Martin: No I won't. It's a subject the medical profession frequently know nothing about.

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Martin #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

(=Yes this is the same Martin on Premier=)

Martin: God is your maker. Your parents had very little control over the process.

Sid Rumpo: Don't be ridiculous.

Martin: Just remember, you know God exists and He is your maker. Rather puts all your posts in context, those of a child waving his feeble fists around. Now that is ridiculous.

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CliveM #fundie archbishopcranmer.com

You know there’s an infection taking hold of society. It’s called “inclusion”. At work wherever you look posters scream at you to be ‘inclusive’. Listening to the radio where an university was advertising itself, fourth point in, its active LGBQT (or whatever) society. Watch BBC news 24 hrs, everything seems to have a reference to diversity or inclusion. Our new Duchess is proud to live in ‘diverse’ London. The ‘inclusive’ bores drone on and on and on. It’s like water torture. Drip, drip, drip, incessant, never stopping.

Dear Lord, make it finish, it’s driving me insane.