Woe to the shepherds

From Prebendary Sam Philpott

I refer to your lead story ‘Locked Out!’ (November). The House of Bishops need to re-visit John 15.15, where the Lord tells his disciples that they are not servants but friends and that he has told them everything that he has heard from the Father. Contrast that act of friendship and trust with the bishops’ obsession with secrecy over Guildford (and so much more)!

If they continue to dare to wear his cross on their breast, it is high time for a change of behaviour and a serious attempt to model his example. Politicians are often accused of being out of touch with the electorate. It is far more worrying when bishops have lost touch with their Master. Bishops must remember that when they deal with the Baptized, they are dealing with the Lord’s friends.

Sam Philpott

St Peter’s Vicarage, 23 Wyndham Square, Plymouth PL1 5EG

We knows nothing

From Fr Richard Oakley

Like others, I was intrigued to see that one of the questions to be asked of those who want British Citizenship is ‘What is the Church of England?’ I would love to know what answer the vast majority of the population would give. My own immediate answer was ‘Pass!’ (should I now leave these shores?) Perhaps readers of New Directions might suggest short, model answers to those who face this question. Winners will be allowed to keep their passports.

Richard Oakley

St Aidan’s Vicarage, 6 Lismore Place, Carlisle CA1 1LX

U was rong!

From Fr William Davage

Dr Pusey may well be turning in his grave in the nave of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford for a variety of reasons, but not because his successor is Professor Marilyn McCord Adams who holds the Regius Chair in Divinity (ND November). Dr Pusey held the Regius Chair in Hebrew.

William Davage

Priest Librarian, Pusey House,

Oxford OX1 3LZ

Cultural sin?

From Canon Zech Schariah

Warm greetings from Luzern, Switzerland. Let me introduce to you as working on missionary service based in Luzern. Here we serve on a mission basis to minorities (refugees, tourists and spiritually homeless people, as well as minority church groups of historical apostolates).

We are looking for New English Hymnal copies; used ones, words edition, some 20 copies for our use. We have been using hymns and songs from different sources which were not always easy. If we can get NEH copies for use by our Community of Emmanuel Church, kindly let me know. If some parishes in the UK or Scotland could to spare a few copies, which would help us a lot. We hold services in a rented R.C. chapel please.

Zech Schariah

Community of Emmanuel Church, Waldstrasse 17, CH 6015 Reussbühl, Switzerland Tel. +41 41 260 7502

Support for Bishop Pete

From Fr John Hunwicke

Mark Stevens is too hard on Pete Broadbent, Bishop of Willseden (November). There is no harm in being called ‘those who do not yet accept the ordination of women.’ I always call the other lot ‘those who have not yet rejected women priests.’

John Hunwicke

The Rectory, Lewdown, Okehampton, Devon EX20 4DN


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