Monday, October 12, 2015

Roger Scruton on Anglicanism: 'My tribal religion'

Michael Duggan, "Roger Scruton: ‘My tribal religion’" (Catholic Herald, October 8, 2015):
An eccentric priest, a single mother and French vineyards offered Roger Scruton ‘a glowing exit sign’ from the Church of England to Rome. So why did he never take it?

Roger Scruton is not a Catholic. But he might have been. “I’ve always been drawn to the Catholic Church because of its respect for tradition, for the apostolic continuity it represents and for its attempts to imbue ordinary life with sacraments,” he told me when we spoke last week. “All of this came across very strongly to me with the Church as I came to know it in the south of France and Italy when I was a young man. It’s not quite the same now, I know.”


He told me: “There are two reasons why I held back from joining the Catholic Church. One is that it requires a bigger leap of faith than I’ve been able to achieve. And the other is that, because I’m divorced, I couldn’t possibly get married a second time in the Catholic Church.

“But I could get a blessing for my second marriage from the Church of England. I was brought up as an Anglican and I’ve always liked the idea of the kind of compromises on which the Anglican Church has thrived.”
Sad. He's written very many things which I have found exceptionally insightful. His primer on modern philosophy is exceptional; his essay on beauty remarkable. A very bright, perceptive mind, almost like C.S. Lewis, whose reasons for not converting were probably more cultural than anything (although he had some issues he didn't quite fathom, like the B.V.M.).

[Hat tip to JM]


c matt said...


Funny how someone so insightful to some things, can seem so oblivious to others.

Anonymous said...

"the idea of the kind of compromises on which the Anglican Church has thrived.”

Well, Bishop Lee of Virginia was a classic example of such compromise. It breeds moral libertinism framed in faux-Precious Moments sentiments. But then again, these are Episcopalians, so that would be Hallmark sentiments.