Sunday, February 3, 2013

So OK, What We Have From Smuts

is now a more detailed acknowledgement that he has not gone through what a mainstream denomination would call priestly formation:
I actually have both an undergraduate degree in Theology (BTh) ( and a postgraduate degree (BA Hons) from two of the best (i.e. recognised) universities here in South Africa. I have been to seminary and I am currently engaged in MA studies specialising in Biblical Archaeology.
Well, my goodness, I have an undergraduate degree (BA) in English and a graduate degree (MA) in English, from two of the best (i.e., recognised) universities here in the US! Except, er, I don't call myself Father. Nor do I call myself Doctor, or anything else. That's the difference between us, Stephen Smuts. You've "been to seminary", but it appears that you didn't complete the course, and I don't know what "been to" means -- your TAC colleague, "Canon" Frederick Rivers, has "been to" two seminaries, by his own account -- he just decided he didn't like them, and what the heck, his denomination thinks it's OK not to go to seminary. That's your denomination, too. You should be ashamed of it.

The fact that you've been to school, even graduate school, the fact that you studied religion as an undergraduate (so did I), the fact that you're now studying archaeology, doesn't make you a priest, no matter how many courses you take. You're a fraud to call yourself one. Your denomination is a fraud to allow you to do it. You are trading on the prestige of real denominations where the designation priest and the title Father actually mean something, and you are misleading people.