Grump stays put

 

How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity’ [Psalm 133].

Bet the writer hadn’t reached chariot pass age. Once you’re an oldie, ‘grumpy’ is part of the deal as well as ‘granny’. (For ‘granny’ should’ve typed ’grandpa’. Which blighter moved my specs from where I’d lost them?) Blow unity. Nothing makes old age more bearable than the prospect of a good old barney.

The Church of England is an old church. Born 597, botoxed 1559, often arguing within itself. One of its periods of greatest growth was when the Church Union and Church Association were kicking the dung out of each other with the violence of an Old Firm match.

If the Establishment won’t let Anglo-Catholics and Evangelicals have a free province, let’s really annoy them by staying put and showing them how grumpy old men and women (GOMs) can behave.

Unity pleasant? A ‘pleasant person’ is a euphemism for a World Bore One we’d cross the road to avoid, if we could find those ruddy glasses. A recent version of ‘pleasant’ is Ordinariate. Who wants to be ordinary? No, an Aggravate sounds more fun – and we can guarantee plenty of aggro if we stay.

As Christina Rees wrote in ND May, making up after breaking up can lead to camaraderie. She’d kill me if I said that she got this idea from Mills & Boon novels.

In our elderly CofE, who can beat a GOM from sitting tight in a favourite ecclesiastical chair? Can’t deafness be a blessing?

What guarantee have women bishops of imposing their will on Anglo-Catholic parishes with their long experience of ignoring episcopal rulings?

Will GOMs obey a Code of Practice any more than elderly drivers obey the Highway Code?

Alan Edwards

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