Chaplain flagged to Prevent for school sermon on LGBT policy victim of 'Church of Postmodernism'

·3 min read
Dr Bernard Randall was made redundant in 2020  - Ian McIlgorm/Solo Syndication
Dr Bernard Randall was made redundant in 2020 - Ian McIlgorm/Solo Syndication

A Christian chaplain reported to Prevent for telling boarding school students they were free to question LGBT policies has said he is a victim of the “Church of Postmodernism”.

Church of England reverend and former Trinity College Cambridge chaplain Dr Bernard Randall was appointed in 2015 to provide pastoral care at the fee-paying Trent College in Derbyshire.

In 2019, as the boarding school adopted a “LGBT+ inclusive curriculum”, the chaplain delivered a sermon encouraging young students to make up their own minds about what he termed “LGBT ideology”.

Dr Randall was referred to the anti-terrorism Prevent programme and initially sacked for gross misconduct by the school, the chaplain's legal representatives have said.

They have stated that the referral was dismissed by Derbyshire Constabulary, and although Dr Randall was reinstated in his pastoral role, he was made redundant in December 2020.

He has now launched a legal battle over his treatment, claiming that the "ideology" of gender politics is in competition with Christian values, and that he is the victim of this “Church of Postmodernism”.

“It is an ersatz religion, complete with burning heretics,” Dr Randall told the Daily Telegraph.

He worked at Trent College in Derbyshire
He worked at Trent College in Derbyshire

“It is a kind of Church of Postmodernism. But it lacks the element of forgiveness, so it’s not a true church. This is the one ideology to rule them all.

"When you look at the roots of this kind of gender identity and identity politics stuff, they are in Marxism and postmodernism, which are definitely atheistic.

“You have an atheist ideology coming in and taking over from the Christian values of the school .

“Postmodernism says there is no truth, Christianity says there is truth.”

Dr Randall said he devised his sermon after LGBT educational organisation Educate and Celebrate worked with Trent College on to ensure "LGBTQ+ received appropriate representation", and staff were encouraged to chat “smash heteronormativity”.

The former Cambridge college chaplain believes there are parallels between the politics of gender identity and the educational work of the Jesuits, whose maxim was “Give me a child till he is seven years old and I will show you the man.”

Dr Randall said: “It’s give me the child, and I’ll give you the queer adult. By queer in mean in the technical, Queer Theory way of looking things, where they are deliberately breaking down categories.

“They don’t want there be be gay, male, straight. They want there to be no categories at all. Personally I think that’s a recipe for chaos.”

Dr Randall said he respects and supports the rights of LGBT students, but believes being unable to question and ideology is harmful and goes against principles of free speech.

Represented by Christian Concern lawyers, he is taking Trent College to court for discrimination, harassment, victimisation and unfair dismissal, and an employment tribunal hearing is expected to be heard at East Midlands Employment Tribunal from June 2021.

The school has been approached for comment.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting