An Open Letter to The Church Of England
I have just read the letter you sent to Carol (my wife) and, frankly, whilst not in the least surprised, I am disgusted.
As an agnostic I am still aware of terms such as ‘pastoral care’ – are you familiar with the term? I think not.
Carol, for many years, handled the Church Finances with aplomb. Carol gave a significant amount of her life to ‘church business’ even to the extent of almost talking me into being ‘confirmed’ – not bad going when I’m agnostic eh?
Gift Aid can be claimed back up to four years after the initial date correct? In other words 2008/2009 could be claimed back right up until 2012.
During those years we travelled around a lot due to our daughters gymnastics career – all over Europe – so, it was not always possible to ‘claim’ straight away as other commitments got in the way. Work / home life / family / holidays – you know, all those day to day things that get in the way of sitting at home doing church finances which, of course, is a voluntary thing. Never the less, the claims were made within the allotted time frame so everyone was a happy bunny weren’t they?
In April 2012, as you have always been fully aware, Carol suffered a complete mental breakdown due to pressure of work. This resulted in her no longer having the capability to ‘function’ as she once had. As a result 2008/2009 was ‘lost’.
You were made aware of this but did precisely nothing. Had you reacted in 2012 then 2008/2009 could have been salvaged. I protected her parents – including, of course, her now defamed by you, mother Maud (the Reverend accused my mother in law of lying which she didn’t) – from the full knowledge of quite how badly Carol’s mental state had become. You, on the other hand, seemed to pretend nothing had happened and Carol would continue on regardless of having had a complete breakdown.
Actually, I apologise. You did do something. You sent Carol an e-mail complaining that, as a Church Warden, she was responsible for the fabric of the Church and there was some issue with the bungalow formerly occupied by the caretaker. You suggested that, as this was ‘the fabric of the Church’ Carol should sort out whatever it was that needed sorting. Remember that do you?
Well done Marion! Your Church Warden is in the middle of a mental breakdown and you are criticizing her for a bungalow that probably isn’t the ‘fabric of the Church’ anyway and your only concern was for someone who lives with you having palpitations.
I shared an understanding with you then. I think it’s time to share another one with you now.
How dare you suggest that Carol has let anyone down. How dare you suggest that her mother has lied to you. Who the hell do you think you are?
YOU are responsible, as Revd. Marion Smith BA Hons, for the running of St Peter and St Paul’s.
How dare you ignore the plight of one of your Church Wardens after a complete mental breakdown and then have the nerve to send her a letter accusing her 92 year old mother of lying.
Defamation of character springs immediately to mind. Tread carefully Revd. Marion Smith BA Hons. Nobody attacks my family. Think on. The best trade union solicitor in the South East of England is a good friend of mine from my union days and I’ve had a chat.
I would request a meeting with both you and Kevin to discuss this matter further.
As an agnostic I will say only this : “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” John 8:7
You just threw a landslide at my wife and I’m not going away over this.
Perhaps Kevin can arrange a time convenient to me to have a meeting. I suggest you just fit in.
ps – due to my commitments as a driving instructor along with the necessity of caring for Carol I rarely respond to e-mails for several days. I will respond if you mail back but it may be a week next Friday before I do.
This is an e-mail I sent tonight -
So there you go peeps – isn’t religion wonderful?
Enough on my plate…..I need a few weeks off before my brain explodes….With Mike’s permission, I will be back xx