Always tempting to say that one situation is ‘just like’ another situation – and then to over-press the comparison to make it fit. But I couldn’t help allowing my mind to play with this one.
I recently wrote in Inspires about the way in which the Scottish Episcopal Church is caricatured as the ‘English Church’. The implication, it seems to me writing in my Irish accent, is that we are less Scottish and less ? than others. And when I nudge people to think more bravely about mission I find that our thinking about the Church of Scotland as the national church with the territorial parish system comes into play. We are the small fry .. looking after our people ….
And the parallel … In Ireland, the 1937 Constitution gave a ‘special position’ to the Roman Catholic Church and gave to churches such as the Church of Ireland the status of ‘recognised churches.’ The implication was, presumably, was that to be Protestant or Church of Ireland was somehow to be less Irish and maybe less Christian too .. And through the working of the Ne Temere decree, the minority church grew ever smaller.
A tempting parallel and maybe just maybe there is some truth in it.