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The Camel


“A camel is a horse, designed by committee” so the old saying goes.

The past week in the UK has seen some groundbreaking changes and decisions made by committee. If you live outwith Scotland/UK, I will try to help you understand. Those who live in our country, need no explanation.

Two important, but very separate and different committees convened on 20/21 May to discuss and decide on the same general issue which has plagued our church and nation over the past few years. In both cases the horse went in and came out as a camel. Let me explain.

The UK government of elected representatives met over two days to decide if the institution of marriage which up until now has meant the union of a man and a woman only, can be redefined to include any combination of man/woman. All in the name of equality, or at least one definition of equality. In their ‘wisdom’ they decided by a large majority to change marriage as soon as possible and redefine it. A camel emerged. Of course the UK is not alone, at the last count many other European countries have done the same, as have some US States.

At the same time as the UK government were discussing, debating and voting, so too was the national Church of Scotland. They convened their annual General Assembly to decide if a homosexual man or woman can be accepted as a minister in a church which calls them, and this was carried. At the same time, they say they hold to the Biblical truth that marriage should be between a man and a woman only. It should be remembered that this church already had a number of homosexual ministers in churches around the country. I have to confess that I feel for members of the church who, in good conscience, stayed with the church as it deliberated over the past few years while the committee sat. Another camel emerged.

There is a groundswell of change happening very quickly, and before our eyes. If you happen to be in the minority of any significant faith group (Jewish, Muslim or Christian) your views have been listened to politely (but ignored) while the views of a minority have succeeded. This is democracy at work I suppose. The only thing that might give us hope is that when these same significant faith groups become a minority themselves, and they will, maybe then the governments and churches will take notice of their own people and do the right thing. In the meantime, if we ever needed it, we who live in the UK are confirmed as not only secular humanist, but with no moral compass, and God-less. I wonder how many more committees will make camels from horses in the future?

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