IN his letter of December 5, Derek Chorley wrote of the need for "a new and more relevant idea of God''.
Well I have an idea of God, a 2,000-year-old idea of one who walked the earth mixing with beggars, lepers and prostitutes. A man who repeatedly stuck up for women and treated them with compassion and dignity, all totally against the social norms of the time.
One who urged people to love one another and forgive their enemies and who forgave his executioners as he hung dying on a cross. This is the God that most Christians believe in and try (unsuccessfully much of the time) to follow.
Mr Chorley writes of a very unsophisticated idea of God and says that you can bet on God being male and living in the clouds. I have met hundreds of Christians but never one who believes that God lives in the clouds – not literally in the clouds anyway.
As for God being male, well St Paul wrote that in Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile, slave nor free, male or female.
The Roman Catholic catechism (239) states that God is neither man nor woman.
So if I were Mr Chorley, I would hold on to my money and not bet on a male God living in the clouds.