A political vacuum is dangerous. In the context of the American elections, the vacuum is not simply an empty space waiting to be filled by the person most adept at grabbing power. It is an empty space waiting to be filled by whatever that person is.

Latin has a way of sticking to you, if you learned it at school. Far from being a dead language, at least in the minds of those who have particularly unhappy associations with the context in which they were taught, it is very much alive.

For one thing, it has shaped a good deal of the English which we still speak, as well as the more classical Latinate languages like Spanish and Italian. Bits of it can also remain lodged in our consciousness in their original form.

I’ve been reading Dominic Erdozain’s excellent The Soul of Doubt: The religious roots of unbelief from Luther to Marx. At last, a book that sets the record right.

The way I was taught Christian history, and the way far too many church history books still tell it, works on the ‘orthodoxy’ model. The Church carries on, with its doctrines. True church members accept them, heretics debate them, unbelievers reject them.

skunk

The future Church

We often ask ourselves: ‘Does the church have a future?’ The trouble with that question is that it is rooted in the baggage of the existing institution and hence it is a philosophically conservative question. Perhaps the liberal paradigm might cause us to ask a far more exciting one: ‘Does the future have a church?’

David Jenkins

‘Best known for expressing doubts about the virgin birth and the physical resurrection of Christ’ – The Guardian .

‘“Unbelieving bishop” Jenkins famed for his sceptical views… He shocked believers by expressing doubts about the virgin birth and the resurrection of Jesus’ – The Daily Mail.
‘An Anglican bishop who questioned some of the fundamental beliefs of Christianity… His views on the virgin birth and the resurrection caused a storm of protest’ The BBC.