Let this be a warning to all of us!

The Church of England (not really a Church since it doesn’t have apostolic succession) follows the winds of trends and fads.  It must do so.  It is tied to the State, which follows trends and fads.  There is also the problem of weirdness.

I bring up the C of E not because I think that it is a big deal, over all.  It’s main utility is to serve as a warning to real Churches.

Here is an example.  This, by the way, is the path that the writers of the Fishwrap, or National Schismatic Reporter, want for the Catholic Church.   You can tell just by reading the latest slimy piece over there.

From The Guardian:

Church of England to consider transgender naming ceremony

The Church of England is to debate plans to introduce a ceremony akin to a baptism to mark the new identities of Christians who undergo gender transition.

The Rev Chris Newlands, the vicar of Lancaster Priory, has proposed a motion to the General Synod to debate the issue, after he was approached by a young transgender person seeking to be “re-baptised” in his new identity.

The motion, which was passed by Blackburn Diocese last month, calls on the House of Bishops to consider whether it should introduce a new service to mark the milestone in the life of a trans person. A spokesperson for the Archbishops’ Council confirmed that the motion had been received, but said it would not be debated imminently.

Newlands urged the church to take the lead on welcoming a group that suffered high levels of discrimination.

He said he knew a number of trans people though his work with LGBT organisations. “It’s an absolute trauma to go through this, with the surgery, as people get a lot of transphobic bullying. The church needs to take a lead and be much more proactive to make sure they are given a warm welcome.”

The motion had “captured people’s imagination”, he said, and already gathered a large amount of support. It has been passed by the parochial church council, the Deanery Synod and the Blackburn Diocese, which covers Lancashire.


The rest is just plain bizarre.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Kerry says:

    At the NCR article among the could’s, seem’s, maybes, likely’s and possibile’s, there were no “Once upon a times”. Odd.

  2. NCR: “Reparation is a favorite theme in traditionalist circles, where, apparently, there are some questions about just how absolute is God’s mercy and forgiveness. The traditionalists place a greater emphasis on divine judgment, sacrifice, penance and the fires of purgatory. It seems as if it all boils down to paying for one’s sins and mistakes.”

    If sins were just “mistakes” (or merely “bad choices”–another au courant circumambulation) what, indeed would be the point to reparation? So one can see why Catholics in Name Only, lacking any belief in sins that need be “paid for”, sneer at the concept of reparation and at those who would offer it.

  3. The Masked Chicken says:

    This level of theological ignorance would be amazing to a boy of 15 only 60 years ago. Of course, I doubt (someone correct me) that The C of E believes that baptism either imparts a seal on the soul or creates an ontological change. If they view it as just a sign, then, of course, they could imagine a new sign for a transgendered body – although, it isn’t really transgendered. Perhaps, in the future, when direct DNA manipulation is possible, the xx chromasome pair can be changed to xy or visa-versa, such a ceremony might be considered by the more lunatic Protestant fringes, but today’s surgeries are just cosmetic. Essentially, they are having a ceremony for cosmetics. Oh, heck, why not have a ceremony for face lifts or Botox? I know that people with sex assignment problems suffer, but having a ceremony for every suffering in life, no matter how big or small is ridiculous – mostly because no ceremony can equal the peace gained by one hour spent in front of a crucifix. You want a ceremony involving mutilation, blood, and suffering to acknowledge your new identity? Well, why not consider that Christ had that ceremony for every Christian on Good Friday.

    The Chicken

  4. SanSan says:


  5. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Over at the Midwest Conservative Journal, it is pointed out in the comments that Anglican pastors in the UK are government employees, and the government regards Baptism as a government service. So they don’t have any choice about baptizing kids or adults; they have to do it if requested.

    So the optimist’s view is that they expect to be ordered to do re-baptisms, and are trying to circumvent it.

    Of course, this assumes the UK Anglican hierarchy care about Christian doctrine in some way, rather than totally ignoring it as they usually do.

  6. LuisaP says:

    Ehmagawd ! I’m getting a new haircut and maybe highlights – which I haven’t had. And I just got some super cute sunglasses from Quay (my fav) I mean, this is totally going to make a new person out of me. Fer Sur. Do I need a new baptism? Does the old one go out with the hair? I mean like, seriously what should I do ?? /s

  7. jeffreyquick says:

    “Christians who undergo gender transition”. There’s a word for that: the excommunicated.

  8. danielinnola says:

    The’re barking mad.. The lot of em.

  9. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    Masked Chicken,

    In terms of “Lex orandi” one could consult:

    churchofengland.org/media/1190836/holy baptism.pdf

    and the still official 1662 Book of Common Prayer:


    The latter speaks of “remission of […] sins by spiritual regeneration” in its baptismal liturgies, and says, “we are hereby made the children of grace” in its Catechism.

    In the article, Chris Newlands is quoted as saying, “I said: ‘Once you’ve been baptised, you’re baptised’ “and describing the service they went on to devise as “an affirmation of baptismal vows “.

    I’ve heard that it is, or was, a not uncommon practice for someone in the C of E to adopt an additional personal name of his own choosing at the time, and in some sense as part, of his confirmation by a bishop.

    Whether anyone in the past ever thought or aspired to ceremonialize a change of name by deed-poll or whatever, I have never heard.

    It seems grievously odd to me that the Church, ” Churches “, and “ecclesiastical communities” (as characterized in Lumen gentium 15) do not in charity explicitly, emphatically, publicly try to dissuade their members and any- and everyone who might be contemplating it from embarking on disturbing their hormonal balance to produce secondary sexual characteristics and on cosmetically surgically mutilating their bodies to produce the appearance of primary ones.

  10. 2H84 says:

    It’s no longer available as their website had been overhauled, but this is the chap who made an entire Sunday sermon of the fact that, having entered a civil partnership, he (I believe he was on the staff of a Cathedral at the time) and a number of clergy and the bishop went off to a secret location somewhere to have a eucharistic get together and mutual cry….

  11. Alanmac says:

    Surgery will not cure a psychiatric condition.

  12. Benedict Joseph says:

    At the risk of being chided by someone, I will repeat a view that I have held for some time. That is, that the protestant revolt (I never use “reformation” because it is in itself a grand lie) was the greatest tragedy in history – bar none. There is an impulse in me to modify that view because I’ve been challenged more than once and made to feel like I might be – well, nuts, as some say. But in good faith I can’t relinquish this perception. But why would Our Lord allow this great tragedy to befall the Church, even all humanity? I don’t know, but the idea has occurred to me that He was providing, at the beginning of the modern age, a mode of Christian observance, a pool of experimentation, that would allow us to observe the “wrong road,” thus allowing His Bride to avoid the same path. As contemporary events unfold, I’m not entirely convinced my reasoning is without merit, but I’m beginning to be convinced some important people are not observing. May what is presented here by Father be an alarm well heard.

  13. Fr_Sotelo says:

    It is bad enough that people ask doctors to mutilate their bodies, doing things to people that at one time would have been considered a capital offense. Now, they want rituals and blessings so that the church can comfort people in the delusion that they did not have their bodies disfigured and mutilated. It sounds like something out of the Book of Revelation.

  14. Daniel W says:

    An example of Irish logic from a forward-thinking-social-engineer ……
    “I think the issue of transgender rights is critical to understanding how closed-minded the drafters of the Irish gay marridge law are, and the 62% who fell for it. This backward law only allows people who are men or women to marry and explicitly excludes all those who do not identify with either sex! What a travesty, what bigotry!!! How could such a backward law be approved in today’s world, where it is well known that some people are born neither male nor female. Those people have a right to marry as much as anyone else. The Irish should be reeducated and a new referendum held so that transgender persons who identify with neither maleness nor femaleness can marry.”

  15. donato2 says:

    The “trans” fad is the culmination of the ideology of subjective self-determination. It is an ideology that is disconnected not just from natural law but from all reality. Surgically changing one’s genitals so that they will comport with a sexual orientation disorder is not far removed from a schizophrenic cutting off his hand because he believes it is possessed by the devil.

    I long have had a strong premonition that we, the Church included, are on the precipice of a catastrophe. I don’t know what form the catastrophe will take, on when exactly it will occur. But I feel in my bones that as a result of this rapidly deepening evil something really bad is going to happen.

  16. Bosco says:

    May I suggest a piece of liturgical music for the C of E “Trans-gender Naming Ceremony”?

    It’s an uplifting little number from 1969 by Johnny Cash, ” A Boy Named Sue”.


    How do you do?

  17. gramma10 says:

    There once was a time that pulpits preached straight moral truths.
    I do not understand why we read this insanity and just say tsk tsk!
    Shouldn’t we all start a task force or something pointing out the lie this is??
    Craziness loses a bit of power when it is addressed with factual truth head on.
    Once you bring evil out from the dark and into the light of truth, I think that the devil cowers. Why do we just keep reading about all these aberrations and not do anything? I for one do not have a plan except to pray. But every time another bit of poison drops into the pot and no one dumps out the contents of the pot, we just slowly die.

  18. Philip Gerard Johnson says:

    As a history major, sometimes I wish I could go back in time and speak to some of the bishops and priests during the reign of Henry VIII. Of course we know of the heroic witness of St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher, but it seems that not all of the other bishops and priests (and faithful) could be so nationalistic as to reject Rome immediately.

  19. MouseTemplar says:

    Granna10: one could do some reading of Kupelian’s The Marketing of Evil to learn how the movement to normalize homosexualiy has been engineered by activists to push us down the path to acceptance. Then start a discussion around those ideas, and pray, and speak out where you can.

    That said, how does it help that the Vatican appointed Pro Homosexual Fr. Timothy Radcliffe, former head of the Dominican Order, as a consultant to the Pontifical Council on Justice and Peace?!?

    Who is picketing the Boston Childrens Hospital where the Gender Management Clinic begins the sex change procedures on children as young as 11 years old–most recently transforming one of two twin brothers into a girl in the Nicole Maines case?!?

    “Whe he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. “–Mt 9:36

  20. And the CofE never had the honesty to tell the man what baptism means and that one baptism is all that is necessary for salvation, that one simply cannot be “rebaptized” and have it mean something different.

  21. WYMiriam says:

    “Bizarre” is a mild way to put it, Father Z.

    Two comments only: (1) if transgender surgery is “an absolute trauma to go through” (per the Rev Chris Newlands, the vicar of Lancaster Priory), then how can any doctor do the surgery, and how can any psychiatrist or psychologist permit a patient to go through with it? Even if “a lot of transphobic bullying” is the cause of trauma, isn’t there some way to mitigate that through counseling?

    (2) ““. . . we created a service, which was an affirmation of baptismal vows where we could introduce him to God with his new name and his new identity.”” You mean, introduce this person to God, as if He didn’t already know all about this person’s new name and new “identity”?


  22. Max says:

    This whole story reminds me of an nineteenth century British Methodist minister who in describing the chief dangers confronting “the coming century” spoke these prophetic words:
    “The chief dangers that confront the coming century are these:
    Religion without the Holy Spirit
    Christianity without Christ
    Forgiveness without Repentance
    Salvation without Regeneration
    Politics without God and
    Heaven without Hell”
    William Booth, (10 April 1829 – 20 August 1912) British Methodist preacher & founder of The Salvation Army

    God bless our military who gave their lives to protect us.

  23. DonL says:

    How soon before they start selling “resurrection” and “transfiguration” operations?
    On second thought, probably not, because so many of us already think we’re God.

  24. NoraLee9 says:

    I am reminded of Fr. Malachy Martin’s book, Hostage to the Devil. One of the chapters concerns a male to female transgendered individual who, after exorcism, returned to being male, albeit missing a few things…. I have never heard of this topic again without thinking of this episode. I had not heard of this clinic in Boston until now. I looked up the story of “Nicole” Maines. The doctor at the head of the clinic is 68. He is of that same generation which has perpetrated so many bad ideas onto society. I fear for this child. I think pursuing a course such as transgender surgery on the whim of an 11-year old is a recipe for disaster.

  25. Joseph-Mary says:

    Well, lets see….our Church is not immune from ‘debate’ (on settled issues) such as approving homosexual unions and communion for divorced and remarried, now is it? That is the thing: further ‘discussion’ and ‘debate’ on things that have been and always will be sinful. Compromise with the world is a bad and dangerous thing for souls. But who is much concerned for the salvation of souls these days? Doesn’t everyone go to heaven? As long as the youth are employed, the elderly are not lonely, and we protect the earth and kneel to the ‘poor’ then we should be just fine, right?
    Oh dear…sarcasm. Had better get to praying.

  26. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    With respect to questions of “trauma” and what might deserve the description of “bullying” (into surgery, for instance), this article by Walt Heyer about his own experiences is well worth reading:


  27. Archicantor says:

    This is not the place to attempt a defence of the sacraments of my Communion (whose adequate defence is simply the text of the Book of Common Prayer), or to comment on this utterly ridiculous proposal (which I hope and trust will be quashed when it comes to be examined by the bishops).

    But I would like to take up Suburbanbanshee’s point about the Church of England’s clergy being “employees” (I don’t actually see this expressed in the comments thread to the linked post at “Midwest Conservative Journal”).

    It has recently been established by a court of appeal that the clergy of the Church of England are not employees:



    The relationship between a national Church and its nation are not at all so simple as outsiders commonly assume. The Catholic Church has also been, and still is in a few places, a state Church by law established. History shows what hostages to fortune there always are in such Church-State relationships. But I don’t think this is applicable to this particular problem, except in the sense that an Anglican incumbent is always conscious that he has, in law, “cure of souls” for the whole of his parochial territory, and that all sorts and conditions of men have a claim to his pastoral attention. The priest in this story was at least not so badly trained as to think that baptism could or should be repeated. We are not so lucky in some other of our churches…

  28. bobk says:

    Archicantor, clerics in the English church may not be mere employees, but they sure act like it. As I pointed out in the Midwest blog, an atheist (who taught religion in British public school, figure that out too while you’re at it) was quite happy to have her child baptized by the local Anglican vicar. Because that’s what you *do* with a British baby. Belief has as much to do with it as putting coins in a parking meter. The C of E is a karaoke club. Lip syncing through old tunes whose lyrics they don’t understand.

  29. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Well, I’m glad to learn that Church of England clergy have some kind of religious freedom protections in place. It sounds like they aren’t being used as much as they should, though.

    Come, o Holy Spirit, and remind us of the Son’s teaching, and give all of us some good counsel! We surely do need your help now.

  30. Archicantor says:

    Thanks, bobk. “Lip syncing old tunes” is a very apt (and tragically funny) description of much mainstream Anglican practice. Baptism has proved very durable in the folk religion of the British, where it seems to be understood as some sort of apotropaic charm. But if we can just keep hold of the old tunes and lyrics, there’s hope that they’ll prove intelligible to the rising generation. (Catholic faithful dedicated to the usus antiquior have much to teach traditionalist Anglicans about pursuing “legitimate aspirations”!)

    As for atheists teaching in Church schools, well, quite! The real problem, though, is that the “Religion” curriculum has been redesigned to exclude all truth claims (so that an atheist is right at home in it). What I can’t get over, though, is the atheists who collect salaries teaching in seminaries. My own theological studies were pursued at a Catholic university, and boy…

  31. AvantiBev says:

    I remember warning my gay cousin who opined that a particular entertainer should be castigated, boycotted and denied work (the latter came true) because this entertainer did not endorse gay marriage. I warned him he would do well to uphold the right of freedom of speech and thought because while gays were then powerful as the flavor of the month, another cause celebre would replace them and wield the same sword of silencing. Should my cousin not embrace that successor “cause” with sufficient enthusiasm, I cautioned, he would find himself on the wrong side of that sword.

    Yesterday, gays; today, transgender; and tomorrow, bestiality or “intergenerational love” as pederasty will be called.

    If gays are 2% to 4% of the population of the USA, how much smaller are those who TRULY believe themselves born with the wrong genitalia? This is not the tail wagging the dog, but the very tip of the tail wagging the dog!

  32. KateD says:

    At nih.gov they say that each cell in the human body contains sex chromosomes. There are an estimated 3.72 x 10 ^13 (37.2 trillion) cells in the human body.

    What would happen if you changed one chromosome in each cell? What genes would be tacked on/removed? Would they be expressed? How many altered cells would be necessary to change gender? More than 50%? So like, 20 trillion cells? This is truly science fiction.

    No human has actually gone through this process, therefore there are no transgender people, and the point is moot; as Kerry inferred in the first comment, a fairy tale…

  33. KateD says:

    Those who have been mutilated in an attempt to cure their psychological disorder should be treated with pity and compassion, not bullied.

  34. iamlucky13 says:

    @ Venerator Sti Lot
    “disturbing their hormonal balance to produce secondary sexual characteristics and on cosmetically surgically mutilating their bodies to produce the appearance of primary ones.”

    The way you worded this, I couldn’t help but recall multiple acquaintances who have made posts on Facebook in support of transgender “rights” who have also condemned the overwhelmingly simpler, far lower risk practice of circumcision as mutilation.

    I can think of at least two specific people offhand who hold those two opposing views. I’m pretty sure I know more. There’s also plenty who rant about suspected hormones in food, but view any attempt to regulate or even discourage the use of hormonal contraceptives as misogynistic.

    I did notice that the Guardian article referred to the activity held for Mr. Musgrove’s as a “public affirmation” that was “akin to baptism.” They don’t seem to have gone as far as calling it a second baptism, but that definitely seems to be the direction they’re heading.

    The Fishwrap articles are sometimes more incredible than the Eye of the Tiber satire, but a lot less funny. This one placed executing convicted criminals on the the same level as killing unborn babies. They could hardly have been more obvious that their intent was not to make sure that we all recognize how very narrow the Church’s acceptance of the death penalty is, but to try to paint defense of life in the womb as hypocritical.

  35. Venerator Sti Lot says:


    A fearful thought, tinkering with the genes and/or the second X or Y chromosomes! Meanwhile, tinkering with language is going on apace with more success (see the link in the Guardian article to the Musgrove article in the Telegraph about ‘sex’ and ‘gender’…)

  36. Archicantor says:

    Agreed 100%, Suburbanbanshee. And unfortunately, the court decision wasn’t about protecting the priest’s religious freedom to resist the Zeitgeist. It was a rejection of the attempt by an Anglican priest to join a union and claim unfair dismissal when his bishop removed him from his post after discord in his parish. I guess the religious freedom of the bishop was protected…

  37. Venerator Sti Lot says:

    More information from someone quoted in the Guardian article (and comments similiar to the second one by WYMiriam at 12:41 AM today):


  38. gramma10 says:

    God will not be mocked!

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