Am I just getting old?

This is really by way of a short follow-up to the last post. When I re-read it, I wondered if I was falling into that way of thinking which besets those of us over a certain age. We look back on the society of our younger days with a certain affection as a more innocent, responsible time; then we contrast it with the dissolute age in which we now are. Is this my problem? Well, here’s Clifford Longley writing in last week’s Tablet.

cliNone of this (the election of Pope Francis and the installation of Archbishop Justin Welby) is likely to make much lasting impression on British society and its obstinate pervasive secularity. The world may admire, but not change; there is no call to conversion. Both Churches (Catholic and Anglican) are on course to continue their slow decline in membership and influence, as British social and cultural life drifts even further away from anything recognisably  Christian .

Meanwhile along with churchgoing, and probably connected with it in a complicated way, there has been a collapse of values and virtues in institution after institution, from the health service to the finance industry, from politicians to the professions. By any measure people are more selfish and less honest, less faithful and less trustworthy. Indeed, it is because of the vacuum in values that administrators have tightened their regulations to try to rectify the decline. It hasn’t worked and instead has accelerated the process, for by their very nature rules crowd out virtues.

And although there will always be individuals who stand out, the secular claim that it is possible to have high ethical principles without religion is gradually, generation by generation, unravelling. The nation’s moral capital is being exhausted.

The Tablet   23rd March 2013  p.5


About Scott Anderson

Formerly an Anglican priest (ordained 1975) received into the Catholic Church in February 2012, and ordained to the Diaconate on 27th July 2013. I took early retirement, and divide my time between London and northern France. I am deeply committed to the Ordinariate as a gift of the Holy Spirit in the search for unity. Like many Ordinariate members I feel a personal gratitude to Pope Emeritus Benedict, together with loyalty to our Holy Father, Pope Francis. My blog tries to make a small contribution to the growth of the Ordinariate by asking questions (and proposing some answers) about the 'Anglican Patrimony'. I have always been fascinated by the whole issue of growth and decline, and therefore concerned for appropriate means of evangelisation in western Europe. I believe that the Holy Spirit is constantly renewing the People of God and that we must be open to him. My love of music and motorcycles will occasionally surface in my posts. On Saturday 19th October 2013, I was ordained to the Priesthood at Most Precious Blood, Borough, by the Most Revd Peter Smith, Archbishop of Southwark, for the service of the Ordinariate of our Lady of Walsingham. I continued to serve the Ordinariate group and Parish at Most Precious Blood until the end of 2014. Subsequently, I helped in the care of the Ordinariate Groups at Hemel Hempstead and Croydon, and in the Archdiocese of Southwark, until the beginning of September 2015. With the agreement of my Ordinary, Mgr Keith Newton, the Bishop of Amiens appointed me Administrator of the Parish of Notre Dame des Etangs (Pont Remy) in Picardie, France. This appointment is to last for a year, to give the Bishop the opportunity to assess the future of the parish.
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One Response to Am I just getting old?

  1. Edward says:

    Perfectly put by CL. It reminded me of a possible definition of the Ethos of an organisation – it is that which is done and said when nobody is watching or listening.

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