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‘Our Father’ is problematic – Anglican Archbishop

Anglican Church news

The Christian prayer might offend those suffering in an “oppressively patriarchal” world, the Archbishop of York has said

The first line of the Lord’s Prayer is “problematic” as it describes God as “our father,” the Archbishop of York told a meeting of Protestant clergy on Friday. A liberal faction within the Church of England has recently been pushing senior leaders to drop “gendered language.”

In an address to the church’s General Synod, Archbishop Stephen Cottrell recited the Lord’s Prayer, but paused to remark on the words “Our Father” that open the 2,000-year-old invocation.

“I know the word ‘father’ is problematic for those whose experience of earthly fathers has been destructive and abusive, and for all of us who have laboured rather too much from an oppressively patriarchal grip on life,” he said, according to The Guardian.

Cottrell did not elaborate on whether he felt the prayer’s wording should be changed, but his comment divided members of the Synod, which is the Church of England’s governing body.

“Is the Archbishop of York saying Jesus was wrong, or that Jesus was not pastorally aware?” asked Canon Dr. Chris Sugden of the conservative Anglican Mainstream group, referring to the fact that both the Gospels of Matthew and Luke recount the prayer being taught directly by Jesus Christ to his disciples.

Rev. Christina Rees, a former General Synod member, agreed that calling God “Our Father” is “hugely problematic.”

“Because Jesus called God ‘daddy’, we think we have to call God ‘daddy’,” she said “And the big question is, do we really believe God believes that male human beings bear the image of God more fully and accurately than women? The answer is absolutely not.”

The debate is illustrative of a growing divide within the Church of England, whose liberal members have sought to reinvent the institution’s image amid dwindling attendance and church closures. Earlier this year, the church’s Liturgical Commission – which sets out how mass is performed and what kind of language is used during services – told a meeting of the General Synod that it has “been exploring the use of gendered language in relation to God for several years.”

The meeting was followed by a contentious vote on same-sex unions, in which the church agreed it would bless, but not marry, gay couples. The compromise angered both conservative and liberal factions, with the former viewing the decision as blasphemous and the latter arguing that it did not go far enough. The Synod is set to debate how to carry out these blessings on Saturday, and how to handle clergy who refuse to participate.

Image credit: Michael Morse

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Source:RT News

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  1. you can count on protestants for nit- picking : how many currents or churchs do the protestants have ? the word protestant says it all. Protest.
    It is their nature. Also with all matters pertaining the law. Never seen so many lawyers as in protestant countries. It is ingrained in their way of thinking as well as money making.

    • I get what you are saying, but I think that is more fitting to Jews.
      Martin Luther published his Ninety-five Theses as a reaction against abuses in the sale of indulgences by the Catholic Church, which purported to offer the remission of the temporal punishment of sins to their purchasers. You could sin and ‘walk unpunished’ if you paid the Churches.
      Further, the Protestants, as they were going to be named and many feudalists and overlords (who saw themselves in ‘competition’ with the Catholic Church) refused to be bound by secular authority in matters of faith. The term Protestant derives from the letter of protestation from German princes in 1529 against an edict of the Diet of Speyer, which tried to condemn the teachings of Martin Luther as heretical.
      Can’t have that, not paying the overlords their extortion money, eh? How would the parasites survive?

      • The one does not exclude the other. The jews were barred from possessing land a very long time.
        That is why they delopped other skills.
        About catholics buying indulgences i know everything about it. It is still a joyfull religion as ” our sins, if we repent, will be forgiven” . All countries of southern europe.
        Northern europe: among protestants, there were many doing the triangular commerce, that is europe, africa, america : slaves commerce.
        It enriched many countries. And gave them a taste for money.
        The french hugenots fled to Great Britain and Holland which greatly enriched themselves.
        And you forget Calvin. His followers, many in the Netherlands, are really obsessed with money. Not to spend but to have

        I am no church goer, just observe

  2. Resolving this ‘issue’ is not difficult for anyone acknowledging a trinitarian Creator God – Father, Son and Spirit. The first two Persons are clearly male, whereas the Spirit has feminine traits and so clearly is not.

    Wisdom BTW is a translation of the Greek word ‘Sophia’ which is of feminine gender.

    A) continue to pray to the Father through the Son by the Spirit of God.
    B) and chaps, seek the wise counsel of your wife. She’s your neck in marriage – designed to not only support the head…but to point you this way and that…without which you are both floppy and oblivious to her broader perspective. She notices things around you that you may not. So seek her counsel – she’s alongside to help.

    • Lucky to find women like that in todays progressive world.
      Sorry to say, similar as the rest of ‘entitled’ society, many women have lost all perspective of how to treat their man right. I see many ‘happily married’ women, who can’t get enough, full of complaints and demands and never satisfied. Married to feminized bend-over suckers who try to appease, because they never learnt to stand on their own feet.
      And yes, my wife offers wise counsel. I am lucky.

      • mister anonymous !!

        a woman who is contented does not complain. More than material goods, she needs surely companionship and tenderness


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