Archive for February, 2009

Anglican-Buddhist is elected Bishop in Northern Michigan:

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

“Writing in the diocese’s news letter he stated: “Sin has little, if anything, to do with being bad. It has everything to do, as far as I can tell, with being blind to our own goodness.”

CEN 2.24.09

Posted by geoconger in Uncategorized.
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The Anglican Communion’s first Anglican-Buddhist Bishop was elected this week at a special convention of the Diocese of Northern Michigan. The sole candidate on the ballot, the Rev Kevin Thew Forrester received the support of 88 per cent of the delegates and 91 per cent of congregations, according to a diocesan news release.

The nomination of Fr Forrester sparked controversy last month, when the diocese announced that he was the sole candidate for election. Critics charged it was unseemly that a single candidate was chosen by the search committee — which included Fr Forrester among its members — to stand for election. Concerns were also raised about the suitability of a professed Buddhist who said he had received Buddhist “lay ordination” and was “walking the path of Christianity and Zen Buddhism together” being consecrated a bishop.

Known also by his Buddhist name, “Genpo” which means “Way of Universal Wisdom”, Fr Forrester holds progressive views on a number of traditional Christian doctrines. Writing in the diocese’s news letter he stated: “Sin has little, if anything, to do with being bad. It has everything to do, as far as I can tell, with being blind to our own goodness.”

Testing Times -The Church of England and the challenge of Islam

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

[P]erhaps it is not surprising that two of the most powerful contributions at last week’s General Synod came from bishops who have lived in church cultures very different from that of the Church of England. It was Bishop Michael Nazir Ali who articulated a robust and courageous Christology in the debate on the uniqueness of Christ, and in a later debate Archbishop John Sentamu asked Synod to turn to silent prayer immediately after Synod was urged not to forget the persecuted church in the UK itself, those Asian British people who are shunned and labeled as traitors when they convert to Christianity

Against this background, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s claim earlier this week that there was now ‘a drift of understanding’ in public opinion towards his controversial proposals made twelve months ago for the incorporation of parts of Sharia law into the English penal code seems particularly inappropriate.

In the current context this is a message of surrender. At home it will cause confusion and dismay, but overseas the consequences could well be direct and brutal. As Dr Tudor Griffiths, Rector of Hawarden and Canon Chancellor of St Asaph warned “Many will simply hear that the Archbishop has reiterated his support for sharia law and it will be used as propaganda and will feed violence in some areas of the world.”

Charles Raven for SPREAD

It is little more than a week since the Church of England’s General Synod gave a clear signal that it wished to maintain its belief in the uniqueness of Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord, yet already there have been some sharp reminders that the reality of that commitment is going to be tested by the continuing acceptance of Islamic values and practices in British society.

Read the full story here.