It's reported in the Church Times today that the licence has been renewed of a priest who has been a practising Hindu for the last few years, his vows of poverty not, apparently, taken sufficiently seriously to part with his house in the Diocese of Ely.
Whilst this state of affairs owes more to cock-up than conspiracy, nevertheless, as a break from writing teaching resources for 11-14 year olds on Old Testament kings, I wondered what might constitute action leading to the revocation of one's licence these days:
As my permission to officiate comes up for renewal I thought it a courtesy to inform you that I have over the last few months, gone over to the dark side. I know my friends have always assumed that my black clerical wear was somehow sported ironically but I have to say that the affairs of the day just don't cut the mustard when compared with that which goes bump in the night.
I hope you won't feel that my swearing due and canonical obedience to your goodlordself is not somehow compromised by undertaking to serve you jointly alongside the prince of evil and the powers that roameth the earth like a vengeful lion, but I do leave it up to you to decide. If you do withdraw my permission there is a Mother's Union Solemn Eucharist that will require cover next Thursday.
As I said to the Area Dean the other day the Asherah pole is purely for decoration and all babies passed though hoops of burning and sulphurous fire are thereafter baptised.
Since making this slight alteration to my personal spiritual journey I have been amazed at the new contacts I have been able to make. Midnight at the cemetery is particularly productive, pastorally.
If you wish to discuss my future I would love to invite you round. I am usually free during the day and only serve the finest and freshest organic goat's blood. I am happy to open the curtains for the duration of your visit.
I remain your semi-obedient servant and sign as I now style myself,
B. Al Zebub (Rev Dr)
P.S. My internet service provider will from now on be Demon.