Tina Beattie, Roehampton.
Whenever I see a flash (!) of lightning or hear the bang (!) of thunder, I am reminded that the phallocentricism of neo-orthodox theology risks reducing the Mass to an orgasmic celebration of homosexual love, from which the female body is excluded. It makes me very cross, even if I remembered to bring an umbrella with me! We Tablet directors have concluded that the only answer is to ordain women, liberalise the abortion laws, and drop the God-centred aspects of religion in favour of human flourishing! By the way, if anyone would like me to give a lecture in a prestigious place - say, the Scunthorpe under-7s Bible Class - I will be glad to accept. But don't tell the local bishop beforehand - he might try and stop it!
Michael Campbell, blogger, bishop and controller of information.
Although I do not approve of humour on blogs - or indeed anything but the most tedious platitudes as a rule - it may be that the following hilarious story might make an exception. It was raining hard in Lancaster last week, and one of my deacons came to ask my advice on a moral dilemma. He had discovered an outbreak of cannibalism in my diocese - in particular his parish priest had been eaten by some members of ACTA - and wondered whether it was appropriate to mention it on his blog. However, he voluntarily slipped on the damp pavement and fell into a puddle, voluntarily ruining his vestments and breaking his leg. How we laughed at his voluntary misfortune! I think he's in for a period of voluntary prayer and reflection, don't you?
Damian Thompson declines a cupcake at the Mad Hatter's tea party.
It's been very hot lately, hasn't it? My spies in the Vatican tell me that this is because Pope Francis is finally getting to grips with the English weather. Whereas Pope Benedict was satisfied with the traditional mixture of rain, cloud, more rain, and fog, the man that his intimate friends call "Pope Francis" is determined to impose his own South American weather on the Catholic church. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that a new bishop, with responsibility for weather, had been appointed, with instructions to pray for sunshine! I have even heard the name of Fr Ray Blake mentioned - it is no secret that while at Brighton he has produced significantly more good weather than they get in northern cities such as Luton.
George Carey (2nd left) is corrected on a matter of theology.
A lovely day, isn't it? Of course, as the Bible says, if you don't think it's a lovely day then you are not appreciating God's creation to the full, and should take medical advice as to whether to carry on living! Trust me, I know all about these things, I was once an archbishop.
Paul Inwood, composer and liturgist.
Here's a little something you might like to sing at Mass. Don't forget your ukelele!
The sun has got his hat on, hip-hip-hip-hooray! The sun has got his hat on and he's coming out today... ch-ch!