Dear Frank,

I confess that I tend to get a bit sententious after a few glasses, so put it down to the season if I remind you of one of the purposes of these letters. It is, of course, to share with you some of the daring innovations and intrepid experiments which mark out the Anglican Communion as the bell-wether of the New Christianity.

Well, I am proud to say, we have done it again. We are setting out on a journey of reconciliation with the Church of Scotland, with the ultimate aim of full interchangeability of ministries. It’s very exciting – a dramatic Christian response to the pending break-up of the UK. Where politics divides, faith unites, and all that.

Of course there will be the usual ecclesiological quibbles about orders and bishops from the Anglo-catholics. But frankly, after they lost over women bishops, they are a busted flush without a leg to stand on (now there’s an interesting pair of metaphors!)

As I see it, in a world where most people don’t give a toss about churchy things, we have got to give sacraments a new purpose. The A-Cs, of course, think sacraments are simply a gift: like diamonds they simply are – and are forever. But I think that they must be given a new purpose. They must be put to work. And what better use, now that we have demonstrated sexual equality in the workplace, than to prop up the poor old crumbling United Kingdom?

Which is what got me to thinking that you and I might do the same for the European Union. We could declare our churches in immediate full communion, and establish what the politicians are making such a pig’s ear of. A word from you and me and we could have the free movement of laity and ministers across the whole of Europe, a courageous spectacle of equality and solidarity.

Of course, you, like us, would have your problems – the Burkes and the Sarahs of this world are always set to spoil a party. But for once we would both have the Germans on our side! Think about it.

I gather you are not keen on Christmas – but happy Hogmanay anyway,

Yours, as always,


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