Britain’s ‘Subversive’ Archbishop

Mark Tooley is President of the Institute on Religion and Democracy (www.theird.org) and author of Methodism and Politics in the Twentieth Century. Follow him on Twitter: @markdtooley.


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Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams was identified as a “subversive” by Britain’s internal security service during the 1980s, The Telegraph recently revealed.  The report follows Williams’ recent public denunciation of the British government’s trimming of its gargantuan welfare state, over which he exuded “bafflement and indignation.”

The Church of England’s senior prelate, who also heads the global Anglican Communion, is more professor and aesthete than pastor.  His long-time affinity for dreamy politics of the Left, divorced both from earthly reality and Heavenly good sense, have further undermined his communion even as it struggles over a schism regarding sex and theology.

During the 1980s, Williams busily demonstrated outside U.S. and British military bases, earning arrest in 1985 for his civil disobedience with the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. He was part of the international Soviet-backed campaign to prevent the Reagan administration’s placement of Pershing II missiles in Western Europe, in response to the Soviets’ earlier placement of threatening SS-20s.  The Soviets hoped to compound their conventional force superiority in Europe with nuclear superiority.  No thanks to myopic activists like Williams, joined by millions of demonstrators, the anti-U.S. campaign throughout Europe famously failed to intimidate President Ronald Reagan or Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.  The U.S. missiles were deployed, persuading the Soviets to negotiate the removal of all intermediate range nukes in Europe. Reagan better intuited the path to peace than did ostensibly sophisticated clerics like Williams and his cohorts at Cambridge and Oxford.

Reportedly, Britain’s MI-5 had a dossier on Williams’ peacenik activism that was shared with then Prime Minister Thatcher and other senior British officials in the late 1980s.  In the 1970s the young theologian had helped found a leftist “Jubilee Group” that inveighed against capitalism and apparently included neo-Marxist wannabes. Later, Thatcher reputedly cited the Jubilee Group as “the most subversive group within the religious community in England,” while one British newspaper derisively dismissed it as “a bunch of neo-Marxist trendy clerics.”

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  • Chezwick_mac

    And today, Rowan is on the record as supporting the introduction of Sharia into British law. He is an enemy of freedom.

    • LindaRivera

      Rabidly pro-Islam, pro-sharia Rowan, is an enemy of G-D.

  • Lady_Dr

    No wonder people are leaving the Church in England in droves. With this ninny in charge the whole thing will soon be history. And with the help of Williams and his ilk it will be replaced with Islam. I mourn for the once great Great Britain.

  • Andres de Alamaya

    Is there a way to impeach an archbishop? Couldn't he be sent on proselytizing missions to Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Gaza, Yemmen? They would deal with him more effectively than the Brits.

    • Liberty Clinger

      "Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?"

      • Guest

        Brilliant

    • mlcblog

      They used to simply poison these guys or let them have an accident or a disease.

  • Ghostwriter

    I hate to say this about an archbishop but it needs to be said:Archbishop Williams is a twit.

  • LindaRivera

    The man is a Marxist. Why was this Marxist made Archbishop of Canterbury? Something is horribly wrong with the Church of England. It is no wonder that so few people in England attend church.

    • Liberty Clinger

      "Since Henry VIII broke with Rome, the Archbishops of Canterbury have been selected by the English (British since the Act of Union in 1707) monarch. Today the choice is made in the name of the monarch by the prime minister…"
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archbishop_of_Canter

      Since Rowan Williams was selected by the highest levels of British government, we should acknowledge that something is horribly wrong with England.

      • Guest

        He was appointed in 2003, and we all know who was prime minister then

      • mlcblog

        I was interested to note in the movie and reading history that Clement Atlee was prime minister when much of England was nationalized and their health care plan was put into motion. 1950's to now and it has brought complete destruction of a once great way of life.

  • personhoodCO

    An intelligent man once said, follow the money. Since Christianity is failing on the continent, thus tithes & offerings are down, where does this man get his filthy lucre that he decries? On this side of the pond, if income is down, the Pastor takes a sabbatical "to spend more time with his family"

  • steven l

    Black on grey is very difficult to read!!!

  • Hank Rearden

    This is a man who has lost faith and has decided to go into politics. He is not saving souls; he is trying to save nations, which is what Christ refused to do – "render unto Caesar…" – because the nation as a unit cannot live under the moral precepts of the individual.

    All of what we know as the Middle East and North Africa was once Christian or Zoroastrian. Christianity in that area was wiped out by Sharia and society stagnated for 1300 years and counting. He want to bring that catastrophe to Great Britain. He should be defrocked!

    • mlcblog

      If he ever had any faith. Many are hardened and cannot have faith,and they are put there by their socialist buddies who are also hardened against their fellow man and at the same time crazily idealistic.

  • mcrobbins

    Remember when the former Archbishop, George Carey, expressed his shame that the Anglican Church was disinvesting in companies doing business in Israel. All of this effort was led by Williams.

    • Rifleman

      Thanks for pointing that out, I often find myself on British Newspaper sites, but I missed it. "Former," Archbishop is too bad, apparently he's sorely needed. I'm Baptist myself, and hostility towards Israel has long been a commie flag for me. You can see American commies like bill ayers over there these days helping with the flotillas of weapons blockade runners.

      The USA has our own generations old commie infiltration problem among our clergy. It's nature for commies, and explains why people like McCarthy and Chambers were and still are so vilified by their comrades in the msm.

  • Liberty Clinger

    ”Bombast about evil individuals doesn’t help in understanding anything.” Rowan Williams

    Truth about evil indiviudals does help in understanding evil.

    • guest

      Williams prefers being understood to understanding his world himself.

  • Richard

    If anyone was myopic back in the days of Reagan and Thatcher, it was the two of them: Reagan in particular.

    The after effects of aiding and abetting the Afghan rebels are being felt by us all.

    • Rifleman

      Untrue, both Reagan and Thatcher also turned their downward spiraling economies around while they checked communism, and won the supposedly un-winnable Cold War against the Warsaw Pact.

      If we didn't aid the Afghan rebels, the final result would have been the same, it just would have taken longer, obl would have still waged war on the USA, and we would have had few or no contacts among the Afghans on 9/11.

  • FriendofGaryCooper

    Oliver Cromwell was right, in wanting to limit the power of the bishops of the Anglican Church.

  • guest

    Black on gray is too hard to read. What are you webmasters thinking?

    I have to highlight the parts I can't read to make them temporarily visible. This should not be necessary.

    • Guest

      obviously your browser is not displaying the white background, Have you tried a different browser?

    • mlcblog

      mine is ok too

  • Patrick

    In fairness to Bishop Williams, he is a believer and Christian. The left Christians IMO make the error of assuming the Biblical commands to the believers can and should be fulfilled by our motivating the states to do or not do X and Y.

    I can't understand why they get that view, but, I debate with left, middle and right believers a lot and they definitely do think this way.

    I guess they think we ought to "use our influence" like the social conservative Christians would parade around against abortion, gay marriage, etc.

    Same difference to me.

    In each case, the believing Christian is relying on what is essentially a pagan entity instead of God Himself via our devotion to bring to earth what we perceive are God's ideas.

    That's weird, IMO. Left and right that are political activists like this miss the point I think.

    • mlcblog

      I disagree that he is a believer. Can't be a Marxist and believe in Jesus. The two do not jive. It's one or the other, and by his actions he has identified his beliefs.

  • bill fisk

    occasionally your pages show up as black text on metallic grey background, a real pain in the whatever and impossible to read

    who designed this site, charles johnson?

    i will read this article, but only because I am already motivated to read it, and I know i can paste it into notepad to make it legible

  • I.E.Brown

    After Rowan Williams advocated the inclusion of aspects of Shariah law relating to family and domestic matters to be included in British law I wrote to asking him if he new exactly such aspects actually involved . I sent him a copy of the Religious Teachings of the Ayatollah Khomeini on Marriage Divorce and Relationships . I received a reply admoshing me with a quote from St Luke's gospel ( Luke 10 . 25-37)I wrote back stating that it was not I who to whom he should be preaching the parable of the good samaritan byt the muslims . I quoted" By their fruits ye shall know them " and pointed out that the ' fruits ' of Islam were evident in the daily rape, murder, bloodshed and persecution of minorities in every country where muslims were in sufficient numbers . He did not reply.

  • I.E.Brown

    The person who was in the running for the post of Archbishop of Canterbury and in my opinion should have been chosen was Dr Michael Nazir Ali the former Bishop of Rochester who was raised in Pakistan as a Christian . He understands the mortal threat we face from Islam . He resigned from his position to devote his time to helping persecuted Christians throughout the world , something he said he was unable to do in his position a Bishop innthe Anglican church . Williams cares more about helping muslims and promoting Islam than he does about his own flock .

  • I.E.Brown

    As Rowan Williams has joined the Prince of Wales in his love affair with Islam perhaps he should try to solve the problem of the decline in the Anglican communion and dwindling congregations by adopting the example of his muslim friends and introducing the death penalty for apostasy. Most British ( indigenous) people when filling out officail forms list as their religion ' Church of England' and it is traditional to baptise babies in church even if they never go again except to marry and be buried .
    Williams could have his own religious police to enforce it and whip people into church .

  • WilliamJamesWard

    Islam will kill all Christians and Jews if given the opportunity, have been on this
    path since Mohammed, so what devil posesses Williams? Delusional and
    insane comes from evil and does no good, he should try to understand the
    prohibitions in scripture to not have anything to do with anti-Christ who he
    seems to be in bed with………………………………………………William

  • Solinkaa

    It is disheartening how the sacrifice of the people of Easter Europe who had communism imposed on them by the Soviet Union was, and continues to be, ignored by "intellectuals" like Williams. When the miners and shipyard workers on strike, or those attempting to cross into West Berlin, were being shot to death, when the planned economy let to the disaster of rationing of meat, milk, soap, washing powder, gasoline, etc, when career advancement was denied to the brightest who refused to join the communist party and/or denounce their colleagues, when passports were denied to all, when you could lose your job and be declared "unemployable" for a careless whisper, when the joke of the day was that the only way out was to declare war on the United States and surrender the following day, when all this was going on in the 70s and the 80s, Williams was swanning around England freely spouting tosh about death-throes of Capitalism and the virtues of marxism… Could he not have known about millions (and it was millions) of people displaced, deported, murdered, tortured in the name of communism, and imprisoned for years for "thoughts against the government"? Could he not have known about the conditions these people lived in, crammed two families to a one bedroom apartment, when a wait for a telephone line took 10 years, could he not have known? With the Soviet Empire border a two hours flight away? Or did he just willfully ignore the reality, the misery that was communism for millions of people in Europe, as many ignore their history today? This makes him morally bankrupt. With a leader like this, no wonder Church of England churches are empty on Sundays…

  • I.E.Brown

    It looks as though Britain may be beyond salvation . The heir to the throne , the Caliph of Clarence House has said publicly that he believes that ISLAM is the answer to all the problems of Western society . That sounds very much like the Muslim Brotherhood's mantra 'Islam is the Solution' . The idiot prince even said that women in the West had much to learn from muslim women . Did he mean total obedience to men? No doubt he wished that he could have inflicted corporal punishment on his wayward wife Diana– put her in a burkha and kept her in purdah.

  • hrayspitz

    Ugandan Anglican Communion is good, too. Their faith is rock solid.

  • Sound&Fury

    The Archbishop Williams is one of Islam's useful idiots.

  • Richard

    "It was wrong, sure, but to call them "myopic" for it is to expect them to have had oracular vision. Hindsight is 20/20."

    I'm afraid I was just using the optical analogy used by the writer in the above article. Sure hindsight is a wonderful thing, but you have to question the wisdom in aiding and arming people thousands of miles away from your borders, just to get one in the eye for your enemy. Playing with the lives of human beings for your own glory and expecting them to be grateful to you? History taught us that doesn't happen, you don't need perfect vision to realise that.