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Anglican Futures: Anglican Alphabet Spaghetti

Anglican Futures Anglican Alphabetti Spaghetti A dummies guide to the plethora of organisations and acronyms linked to faithful Anglicans in the UK and Europe. I once spent some time around military personel.  Everything had its own TLA (Three Letter Acronym) right...

Canterbury Tales: Favourite Bible Stories Retold by Archbishop Justin Welby

Canterbury Tales Favourite Bible stories retold by Archbishop Justin Welby The Good Samaritan A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead, halfway...

Anglican Mission in England Elects Two Suffragan Bishops

Anglican Mission in England Elects Two Suffragan Bishops The Anglican Mission in England (AMiE) met in Synod on 18 June.  While there, they elected two suffragan bishops to aid Bishop Andy Lines in providing episcopal oversight for the overall work.  Bishop Lines also...

Pride Flags Causing Conflict at Christian School

Pride Flags Cause Conflict at Christian School Conflict has broken out in a Christian school in Oxfordshire over the display of “Pride” flags. The institution in question is Kingham Hill School.  The same Trust (Kingham Hill Trust) oversees Oak Hill College, an...

Prayer Book Society Raising Funds to Put BCPs in the Hands of Choristers

Prayer Book Society Raising Funds to Put BCPs in the Hands of Choristers The Prayer Book Society, which will soon celebrate its 50th Anniversary, is raising funds to put a special edition BCP into the hands of junior choristers around the nation.   The idea came to...

Book Review: Reimagining Britain by Justin Welby

Reimagining Britain Foundations for Hope Justin Welby Bloomsbury, 2018, new edn. 2021 (ISBN: 978-1-4729-8497-5, 322pp, £12.99) The Archbishop of Canterbury has made several notable political interventions recently, including over ‘partygate’ and the Rwanda deportation...

Birthday of Anglicanism in America

Birthday of Anglicanism in America By the Revd Canon Chuck Collins June 16, 1607 was the birthday of Anglicanism in America. On this day Captain John Smith and 104 others celebrated the Lord’s Supper when they arrived safely in Jamestown, Virginia. Jamestown was the...

Barnabas Fund Report: Two ChiBok Girls Found

Barnabas Fund Reports Two Chibok Girls Found After 8 Years 24 June 2022 Two women, who were among hundreds of schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram from the Nigerian town of Chibok eight years ago, have been found. Hauwa Joseph was discovered among a group of other...

New Bishop-elect for the Diocese of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory

Church of Ireland News New Bishop Elected for Cashel, Ferns & Ossory The Church of Ireland diocese of Cashel, Ferns, and Ossory now has a bishop-elect.  The Venerable Adrian Wilkinson, Archdeacon of Cork, Cloyne, and Ross was elected to succeed the Rt Revd Michael...

Editorial: Lessons to be Learned from the American Pro-Life Movement

Editorial Lessons to be Learned from American Pro-Life Movement Friday, 24 June 2022, the Feast of St John the Baptist, will be a date which will live in infamy amongst the supporters of abortion.  On that date, the US Supreme Court, overturned the precedent set by...

Christianity & Craft Freemasonry, A Pastoral Guide for Christian Ministers

Christianity and Craft Freemasonry

A Pastoral Guide for Christian Ministers

Gerard Moate

Latimer Trust, 2021 (ISBN: 9781906327705, 70pp)

By 1964 a national commission of enquiry estimated the existence of 50,000 books and pamphlets on freemasonry. This literature has, inevitably, only mushroomed with the advent of the internet. Given the wildly diverging quality and conclusions of this corpus, it is important to find reliable sources from trusted authors and publishers. This book is one such guide through the much-speculated upon maze of freemasonry.

The book does not attempt to be an exhaustive account of the society, but does provide direction to suitable volumes covering such ground. Instead, Moate’s booklet aims to give Christians, and particularly those engaged in regular ministry, a brief overview, a defence against many of the myths and conspiracy theories, and a toolkit of how to deal with masonry as it appears on the ministry radar.

The reassurance that, though masons are secretive, there are in fact no secrets left to it, is repeated throughout. This transparency is amusingly attributed to the nonchalant widows of deceased masons disposing of assorted manuals, constitutions, and regalia at charity shops or second-hand bookstores. 

The picture that Moate assembles of freemasonry is a sad one of a body which became officially deist in 1815 and which bars its members from discussing religion, thus effectively excluding Christ entirely. Thankfully, the account of the Church of England’s relationship with masonry is mostly an encouraging one of transition from a largely-masonic episcopate in the 1940s to an exclusively non-masonic one now. The roles of Christina Baxter and John Sentamu in General Synod’s 1987 condemnation of masonry, particularly in focussing minds on the theological nature of the issue, are to be treasured. Masonry is irredeemably syncretistic and thus perilous to the salvation both of those directly involved and those affected by it.

Pastorally, the most significant note sounded seems to be the priority for the church to provide meaningful fellowship for men. This is an itch that has all too often only been scratched by the false fellowship of masons. 

Edward Keene, Little Shelford

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