According to press reports, the Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP, the Leader of the Opposition, has performed what has been described as a “spiritual volte-face” – he has transferred his allegiance from the Roman Catholic Church to the “Anglo-Catholic” Church of England. Although he is listed in the Catholic Directory as among the 70-odd Roman Catholic MPs, he now speaks of himself as being a “High Church Anglican” or “a Protestant with High Church tendencies”. This is a step in the right direction and we are glad to hear of it, but it is a very small step indeed when we take stock of the company to which he has now joined himself.
In Anglo-Catholic circles, as we understand it, the form of worship is hardly distinguishable from that of Rome. He will thus from time to time, if he so chooses, be present where the so-called sacrifice of the mass will be offered up with all its pagan and devil-inspired trappings but under the auspices of a so-called Protestant church! He certainly has not left Rome as a result of his eyes being opened to view the mass as a “blasphemous fable and a dangerous deceit”; he is rather bemoaning the fact that the Roman Catholic Church “has gone (in the English mass) for doggerel”. “It went from dog-Latin to dog-English”, he is reported as saying, “and it’s not very uplifting.”
Both Cormac Murphy-O’Connor and Rowan Williams, representing Roman Catholicism and High Anglicanism respectively, are guilty of heresy. The views expressed by the latter seem to be so liberal and unscriptural that even some Anglo-Catholics are appalled at the prospect of him becoming Archbishop of Canterbury, and there is a real danger of the Church fragmenting. He sees nothing wrong or unscriptural in sodomites being ordained to office, and in a recent lecture appears to condone adultery and fornication as well. At the same time the Archbishop of Westminster is under police investigation after failing to deal with a paedophile priest whose activities were brought to his notice.
It is difficult for us to see why the Leader of the Opposition has made this move. If we were to hear that he had removed his children from the Roman Catholic school which they presently attend, and in which they are no doubt being indoctrinated, then we would begin to believe that his eyes have been really opened to see the true nature of Romanism. Is it possible that this is no more than a shrewd political move in order to distance himself ecclesiastically from the Prime Minister who, to all appearances, seems to be going in the opposite direction?