To those who are expecting +Justin to fail or are waiting to find an excuse to be disenchanted, it is worth remembering that the Church of England has a legal and constitutional commitment to nationwide pastoral ministry. To some, it might appear paternalistic, dogmatic and narrow in its worldview. To others, it is weak, illegitimate and compromised. It claims to be Catholic and Reformed, but to each wing it is actually neither sufficiently Roman nor robustly Protestant. It was once remarked that the Church of England is ‘crucified between two thieves’ – the fanaticism and superstition of ‘the Puritans and the Papists’ respectively. This may satisfy nobody completely, and yet it is the via media which has sustained its existence over five centuries, perhaps because it expresses something of the English disposition.
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