Wednesday 8 March 2017

The Church of England's Prayer for Today

Head aching as I read the C of E's special prayer for International Women's Day.

As propagated using the following tweet:

God our Creator,
you have built up your Church through the love and devotion of women everywhere:
inspire us to follow their great example that we may with them share in the vision of
your glory; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
Your exam questions:

1. Who are "we" that are praying - men, or everybody that prays that isn't one of the women who have built up your church?

2. If you are one of the women who has built up the Church (which is an ongoing process) - are you not allowed to pray this
a. because you've built up the Church, or
b. because you're a woman?

3. By encouraging people to build a gender equal world, is the C of E Twitter feed critiquing those of its bishops that don't want to build a gender equal world because they think  women can't be priests / bishops / leaders of any kind except of other women?

4. Is the C of E Twitter feed encouraging us to pray for those bishops to have their minds changed? If so shouldn't the Collect be more explicit?

5. Since the current C of E set up explicitly protects patriarchy - while simultaneously pretending it is only implicitly protecting patriarchy - isn't this tweet meaningless?

6. Am I over-thinking this?


  1. Is the C of E Twitter feed like the @pontifex feed? Not written by anyone in authority (the Queen, ++Welby, ...?) but by an intern on work experience?

  2. No you're not over-thinking it. Posting a twee little prayer on twitter won't undo two millennia of patriarchal oppression. Tokenism of the worst possible sort (though probably just a tad less dreadful that the Women's World Day of Prayer!).

  3. Do you know anything about the Women's world Day of Prayer? Because if you did you'd know there is nothing "token" about it and also that it is a world day of prayer, using "Women" in the title (in England and Wales) is to denote it is written by women, and also, you would grieve that of all the world it is England and Wales which feel the need to call it "Women's World Day of Prayer" not "World Day of Prayer".

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  5. Glad Bear this was a prayer for International Women's Day (which is today) not the WWDP (which was last Friday).

    This prayer is just another example of the prayers which the C of E issues for these days, which are trying so hard not to say anything that offends anyone that they end up not saying anything meaningful at all.


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