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International Catholic weekly magazine.

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      15.07.2000 22:17

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      Libby Purves is a fatuous and egotistical journalist, so it should come as no surprise to learn that she's a Christian too. A Catholic as it happens, but because she's a liberal Catholic that doesn't make much difference. She wrote a prominent op-ed for the March 2000, issue of The Tablet, which, if you’ve not come across it before, is a great and widely respected Catholic weekly. Or rather, it was. That is, it's still a Catholic weekly, but it's not great or widely respected any more. Not that it ever should have been widely respected, because conservative theology is just as ridiculous as liberal, although it tends to be better expressed. Libby Purves’ op-ed is a good example of that. She's writing about live - sorry, “real-time” - religious services on the radio: “There's something about a real-time sharing of the moment that strikes a profoundly human response.” As opposed to a profoundly avine or profoundly asinine response, I suppose. Elsewhere in this issue Nicola Meyrick (who she?) enriches the spiritual store of the still male-dominated etc, etc, with an article in which, according to the front cover, she “confronts the new Darwinists”. Well, no: she sidles up to them, coughs in an embarassed sort of way, and murmurs diffidently “You can't explain *everything* with genes, you know”. I’m not going to read the damn thing properly again to make sure, but from a skim through I don't think she mentions God anywhere. After all, if she did that, she might make a mistake and slip God into something she wrote for the Guardian. Not that I know for sure she ever writes for the Guardian, but I’d say it's a pretty safe bet. Apart from that, there are reviews, letters from mad old Irish priests who still take all the mad old nonsense half-seriously, and friendly nods towards the Church of England - the big Christian churches have to s
      tick together nowadays, because they’re getting less big all the time. In fact, as far as I’m concerned the Catholic church is on its death-bed and magazines like the Tablet are recording the last twitches, farts, and dribblings as it slips into oblivion. You've gotta laugh at it all. Well, I've gotta, because it's fun.

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