Synodality II


Dear Frank,

Just a word about Synods

Don’t be taken in by all the guff we Anglicans talk about them. ‘Episcopally led, Synodically governed’ is the official line. But I can tell you as the Archbishop at the receiving end of this ecclesiological nightmare, it is no joke.

Synods rapidly become Parliaments, with established parties and partisan cabals – all of them vulnerable to outside pressure groups and soi-disant think-tanks. The women were the first; now it’s the LGBT+ lobby. To be honest I can see no way of resisting: they have effectively hijacked the agenda before it has even been formulated.

I know you think (on recent experience) that you are now an expert at manipulating Synods and getting what you want. But, frankly, you have seen nothing yet. The more synods you have (and we, God help us, sometimes have three a year), the better organised the malcontents will get – like the St Gallen bunch who got you the job. Every Synod a little Conclave – that’s what you re in for. And the only rule of the game will be that you cannot win.

I never thought I would be saying this, but what possible sense can there be in allowing Europe’s last surviving autocracy to be gnawed away, piece by piece, by shoals of marauding piranha fish?

My advice is to cut your loses and let them know who is boss –  you know it makes sense.

Your younger but wiser friend,


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