One of the Church of England’s most senior bishops has compared the consecration of a gay bishop in America to the invasion of Iraq. Tom Wright, the bishop of Durham and the fourth most senior in the English hierarchy, said both events showed Americans were prepared to act “how they please” with disregard for the rest of the world.
By Jim Naughton
Bishop Tom Wright last night compared his inability to find a parking space near his home to the firebombing of Dresden. Wright represents an influential block of bishops who believe that the Anglican Communion may fall into schism because its prelates are insufficiently solipsistic.
“Just the other day, this woman with a flock of children left her Land Rover right in front of my house,” Wright said, in an interview with the Café. “She knew exactly what she was doing, but she went ahead and did it. I liken it to engulfing a citizen population in massive cloud of billowing flames, don’t you?”
Wright, whose reputation as a Scripture scholar stands him in good stead during his frequent forays against various adversaries, said he has petitioned the city of Durham for a personal parking place, but to no avail.
“I’ve considered pursuing it further,” he said, over lunch at an Iraqi restaurant, “but there’s this terrible business with the dry cleaners. If they are going to shrink a man’s waistbands they may as well just fill a ferry boat with babies and sink it in the Channel. It comes to the same thing.”
Pushing himself back from the table, the bishop eyed a plate a marinated olives and shook his head. “Putting a dish like this in front of a man is rather like running an oil tanker aground in a wildlife sanctuary, don’t you think? Or herding innocent people into rat-infested jail cells where they feed on roaches and sleep in puddles of their own urine.”
Wright will offer a session on moral reasoning at the Lambeth Conference next week. “Originally I was intending to explore experiences of exile,” he said. “For instance, I missed a connecting flight on a recent vacation, and as I sat there stewing in the departure lounge, what should come to mind but the Lost Boys of the Sudan. Do you see it? My experience was their experience, only without the international outcry.”
Eventually, however, Wright settled on another topic. “As Christians we are called to share one another’s burdens,” he said, “and I am not getting the help I deserve.”
“We have yet to explore the myriad ways in which this is about me.”