Friday, February 3, 2012

Giles Fraser for Pope!

Giles Fraser is my kind of Christian. He quotes the Magnificat, extolling a God who puts down the mighty from their seats. Any politician advocating such measures today, he comments, would be accused of class war.

    He hath shewed strength with his arm : 
       he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
    He hath put down the mighty from their seat : 
       and hath exalted the humble and meek.
    He hath filled the hungry with good things : 
       and the rich he hath sent empty away.

I've lost track of whether the Occupy London protesters have been evicted from the vicinity of St Pauls. The last I saw was on Monday. The Guardian reported they had been evicted from a disused office block, and implied the St Pauls encampment is next.

Giles Fraser and the St Pauls encampment
Which brings us to Giles Fraser. Formerly canon chancellor of St Paul's, he resigned on 27th October over a decision by the cathedral chapter to seek an injunction against the protesters.

He sees it as particularly appropriate that the anti-capitalist camp should be outside St Paul's, where it sits on a "fault line between God and Mammon".  He claims "economic justice is the number one moral issue in the Bible," and believes the Occupy protest was a tremendous opportunity for the cathedral.

Or, to express the matter the other way round, as one Guardian commentator did, but sadly I've lost the piece now: the protesters handed the Church of England a heaven sent opportunity to prove itself irrelevant.

Giles Fraser isn't out of a job, he's now working for The Guardian. You can see his stuff here.

On Christmas Day he was on BBC Radio 4's Start the Week discussing Constantine, the man who invented Christmas. A war-mongering Roman Emperor, Constantine reinvented Christianity for his own military ends. Whilst delighted to dwell on the baby in a manger, and the crucifixion, he wasn’t so keen on all the anti-establishment preaching that came in between. Which is why the Nicene Creed, written under Constantine’s supervision, doesn’t mention it.

Worth listening to. As indeed Start the Week usually is.

1 comment:

  1. cool blog, personally whilst i like giles i've always found him a bit wet, a bit middle of the road, dont get me wrong nice chap , certainly one of the good guys.
    if looking for a candidate for pope its traditional to look at catholics mind so i'd take a look at groups like catholic workers ,father martin newell comes to mind as your sort of catholic priest i met him on g8 protests (he was in news only a week or so back on trialfor some protest or other) more controversially in catholic circles try the catholic womens ordination movement.(i rather like the catholic womens groups who have said stick nice protest and gone out to fing rougue bishops willing to ordian anyway - they would argue it may be illegal under catholic law but still valid :-) you got to love that attitude) if your ok with anglicans for the job i know your albert is friends (at least on facebook) with bradfords rev chris h who really does make giles look like the wet liberal he is. personally im in a church that has happily quotied the magnificat as a revolutionary manifesto where the poor are raised up and the rich brought low. we did used to sing a nice version of magnificat to the tune of the red flag if that gives an idea where we are coming from. ;-)