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Former chaplain to the Queen responds to Royal Wedding sermon: ‘Curry misled the people’

Rev Dr Gavin Ashenden, former Honorary Chaplain to the Queen, has responded to Michael Curry’s widely-praised Royal Wedding sermon. Dr Ashenden writes:

The world is rightly talking about Michael Curry’s wedding sermon. It was a ‘tour-de-force’. He is very good at preaching. But it also offers us all an insight into the dramatic difference between the two kind of Christianity that are at odds with each other in the Anglican Communion.

We will call them for the moment, ‘Christianity-max’, and ‘Christianity-lite’.

Credit where it is due. ‘Christianity-lite’ can be very appealing. It reaches out to where people are hurting and it encourages them. It reaches out to where they are longing for good change, and it promises them that change can come.

It speaks continuously of love and hope. Everyone likes to hear of love and hope.

But it has three serious flaws. It doesn’t define love, and it never delivers on the hope. It isn’t what Jesus preached….

Curry told the world that Harry and Meghan loved each other so much that we would see the ‘end of poverty.’ Of course, this was conditional on everyone loving each other as much as Meghan and Harry; and conditional on no one getting jealous or falling out of love, or getting bored with each other. But he didn’t point that out.

Although that is of course, what happens to almost everyone. And this falling out of love, this passing beyond the gravitational pull of romance and eros happens to all lovers, at some point.

The Gospel according to Hollywood (for that is what it is) directs that you jettison your original love, once they no longer give you what you need, and replace them with another. Cupid is a demanding god happy to sacrifice human beings to the feelings of narcissistic eroticised amorousness he engenders.

Since the condition is not and cannot be kept, Curry misled the people.

Dr Ashenden concluded by suggesting there are two types of Anglicanism practiced today. “One that contains the cross and repentance and touches and transforms sexual desire, and one that doesn’t. People who don’t intend to change their ways prefer the one that doesn’t.”

“That was the one that Bishop Curry offered them,” Dr Ashenden continues. “And it went down a storm because bishop Curry is a great preacher. And it will change nothing; because it wasn’t Christianity. It was ‘Christianity-lite’.”

You can read Dr Ashenden’s entire response at his blog: Michael Curry & the Royal Wedding. A star-turn offers the world ‘Christianity-lite’

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