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If my people, who are called by my Name, humble themselves and pray (Part One)

The text, for those who have trouble with a rather individual cursive, reads as follows: Scandal after Scandal. No institution safe....

Monday, 30 December 2013

Letters to St. James - Piccadilly

The CofE certainly picked a dilly when the rector of St. James Piccadilly was appointed in the 1980s with carte blanche to keep it open. Subsequent appointments have continued to career down the broad way on to which he led the church.

The current incumbents have provoked open letters and articles across the blogosphere.

I start with two of my favourite Jewish commentators. 

Melanie Phillips has penned an open letter to the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby. She calls it a church of hate. Melanie Phillips is not an anti-Christan Jew. She understands very well that the decline of healthy Christianity has had a deleterious effect on freedom in general and religious freedom in particular. Do read her article and follow the links.

Daphne Anson has also blogged on St. James, Piccadilly here and here . If anything, she can be more robust than Melanie Phillips.

From within the Christian community, comes Dr. Denis MacEoin's letter to St James. It is exemplary in its Christian attitude. It gives his reasons for supporting Israel and details the homicidal culture that Israel is facing.

I quote:

Let me illustrate the importance of the fence with a single example. In 2005, a young Palestinian woman called Wafa al-Biss was badly burned in a domestic fire, taken to Israel’s SorokaHospital, and treated there for months. When discharged, she was given a permit to return as an out-patient. Some time later she headed for the hospital wearing a suicide belt with the aim of exploding  it among the doctors and nurses who had treated her, as well as however many children she could find. She was caught at a checkpoint and imprisoned. Earlier this year she was released as part of a prisoner release agreement. Within hours she was speaking to Palestinian children, urging them to put on suicide vests and kill as many Jews as possible. And some people wonder why the Israelis need a security barrier.

It is simply wrong, I believe ­ and, I am sure, all Christians believe ­ to flaunt one people’s suffering as righteous while condemning another people for simply seeking to secure themselves and their children from vicious attack. Wafa al-Biss was not a mentally disturbed lone killer manquée, but someone who had every reason to be grateful to the men and women who had saved her life. She was part of a killing system, a system that has taken the lives of thousands of Israel down the years.

Read the whole letter. I would love to see what sort of reply he gets. I looked on the ABC's website for any response to Melanie Phillips, so far, nothing.

However, the putative reincarnation/voice from beyond of a former ABC, to wit Cranmer, has penned a missive on the subject here. I should warn my readers that it is heavily ironic, which some of his own regulars seem to have missed. It took me a little while to realise just how sarcastic he was being.

Another open letter from a victim of Terror and a friend of a murdered victim.

Please write on your wall, under the cross, now obscured by the crescent…. “R.I.P Kristine Luken.”
Kay Wilson – (a British-born Israeli)

The Blog  'Anne's Opinions' carries this:

Sharon and Lesley again at the St James market place today armed with our bag of acrylic paint and wall brush.

With no support from anybody the sense was one of antagonism, being watched as we were by the wardens present it seemed, in case we dared to write on the wall. Seeing our paint Tom, a St James warden approached us to say we could only use their now worn out felt pens. Explaining the uselessness of those pens and the fact that others had used spray paint Debbie, another warden said she’d get us some of theirs. Returning a while later she produced grey – the shade they use to obliterate posts they don’t approve of. In the end Tom told me I could paint one message on a designated spot, provided I was professional and refrained from being abusive. Odd that seeing that others could write what and where they wanted as many times as they wanted!

So I painted This Wall Saves Lives, started to write that 1340 Israeli citizens have died as a result of terrorist attacks since 2000, but Tom’s space and location didn’t permit!

I think this has been through a couple of blogs so I do not know who Sharon and Lesley are, but may the LORD bless them.


  1. I have just heard that a church steward told Richard Millett (the pro-Israel blogger) that the cost of the St James's Wall was - wait for it! - 30,000 quid (sorry, my Aussie keyboard has no pound sign).
    This is outrageous. The money was raised from private donations, including the sponsoring charities. What a wicked waste of funds - sheer robbery from the needy. And it surely hints at how they must hate Jews, to be willing to part with such a sum for such a purpose.

  2. It is a wicked waste of funds. The symbolism of hiding the church with a political issue hasn't escaped my notice either.

    Are your keyboards made by Republicans? Mine has a Dollar and a Pound sign - but no Euro!

  3. My old laptop, bought in the UK, has a pound sign, along with the dollar and euro...