Archive for January, 2011

Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

Posted in Anglican Ordinariates |

By Bishop Edwin Barnes, The Anglo Catholic

With so many clergy and lay people leaving the Church of England for the Ordinariate, it is not surprising that on either hand there are people speaking or writing intemperately. It can seem that the actions of other people is a judgment on us – we have been timid and held back, we have been headstrong and acted too quickly, what we have done casts aspersions on those taking a different path. Somehow, we need to do what we can to stop this, and restore Christian charity among brethren. I can’t speak for other people; but I have been greatly supported and encouraged both by people determined to remain in the Church of England, and by Catholics coming to terms with what the Ordinariate might mean. It has been difficult on both hands; our Anglican brothers and sisters seeing us go, our Catholic brothers and sisters not knowing how they should accommodate us – and especially those priests living a celibate life who see us becoming priests while enjoying family life with wife and children and grandchildren, consolations they have never known.

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Primates’ Meeting – Briefing #3

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

January 29th, 2011 Posted in Primates Meeting |


Day 4
The day began with a presentation on the work of The Inter-Anglican Standing Commission for Unity,  Faith and Order (IASCUFO). Chairman of the commission, Archbishop of Burundi the Most Revd Bernard Ntahoturi, reminded the group that IASCUFO is a commission set up following a resolution at the 14th Anglican Consultative Council, endorsed by the Primates’ Meeting. It is a combination of two former commissions: the Inter-Anglican Standing Commission on Ecumenical Relations (IASCER) and the Inter-Anglican Theological and Doctrinal Commission (IATDC), and it has also picked up the work of the Windsor Continuation Group.
He told fellow Primates that the December meeting of IASCUFO in South Africa saw the members work in four groups: one studying the definition of ‘church’. Archbishop Bernard said, “We are asking: ‘Is the Anglican Communion a Church or a communion of Churches?’” The second group is looking at the Anglican Communion Covenant and resources for studying it. The third group is studying the Instruments of Communion, their theological meaning and how they relate to one another. The fourth group is considering the topic of ‘reception’, that is how the work of the Instruments and of ecumenical dialogues is communicated and understood at all levels of the Anglican Communion.

New Rwandan primate installed

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

President Paul Kagame and Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje greet the press following the archbishop’s installation as primate of Rwanda. Photo: Bishop Silas Ng

George Conger reports in CofE Newspaper

Church and State must work hand in hand to better the lives of the people of Africa, President Paul Kagame said on Jan 24 at the installation of the new primate of Rwanda, Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje.

President Paul Kagame and Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje greet the press following the archbishop’s installation as primate of Rwanda. Photo: Bishop Silas Ng

In his address to the congregation gathered at the Kigali University stadium, President Kagame said the “government cannot do much without the help of the church, the private sector and the community itself.”

When church and state work together they fulfill God’s plan for his people, he said.

The president thanked outgoing Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini for his ministry in the wake of the 1994 genocide. “Understanding and action goes together,” the president said, adding that he had witnessed how the Anglican Church of Rwanda during the past 13 years under Archbishop Kolini had taken positive steps toward rebuilding the nation and fostering peace and unity.

The present also pledged his government’s support for the new archbishop. Archbishop Rwaje responded by noting the Anglican Church of Rwanda has been “working with other Christian denominations and the Muslim community in fostering peace and educational development, I also pledge to continue the relationship especially by strengthening the fight against poverty and HIV/Aids.”

In his sermon, the Primate of Burundi, Archbishop Bernard Ntahoturi, expounded upon 2 Kings, likening the passing of authority from Elijah to Elisha to the changing order within the Rwandan Church, with God’s power and authority passing onto a new anointed leader.

Primates’ Meeting – Briefing #2

Saturday, January 29th, 2011

Anglican Communion News Service

Day 3

On Day three of the meeting, Primates of the Anglican Communion began to more closely consider ‘primacy’. In small groups they discussed their understanding and experience of the theology and practice of primacy in their Provinces, at the Regional level and at the Communion level. The purpose of the morning was to share in plenary the differences and similarities of primacy in the Provinces of the Communion.

Aspects of primacy shared among all Provinces included the Primate having a ministry of reconciliation and peace building; of linking the local with the global and vice-versa; of being a consensus builder, a symbol of unity in the Province and the wider community; of being a pastor to other bishops; and of having a prophetic voice, to interpret the signs of the times in their local context.

“A Primate is the first among equals,” one Primate fed back to the meeting, “an apostle, a servant, who is often on the road visiting dioceses, carrying and embodying the vision of the Province, the mission of the church and the values that hold that Province together.”

Also many considered a Primate to be someone who represented the voice of his/her Province. One Primate explained to the plenary session that in their small group the Primates had agreed that, “none of us are able to or are inclined to speak for ourselves only, but always after consultation with the bishops, with the synods and council.” He added that there had also considerable conversation around the Primates’ voice as representatives of their Province when they went into other councils that were ecumenical, inter faith or political in nature.

There were, however, some clear differences in the responsibilities and scope of the role of Primate between Provinces. Some Primates are also diocesan bishop as well as Primate, while others had no diocesan responsibilities. The length of primatial service varies across the Communion between two years renewable, and serving until retirement. Some Primates are responsible for a lot of administration, others are not. Whereas in some Provinces the Primate can veto a synodical decision (after consultation with the Council/House of Bishops), in other Provinces the Primate needs permission from the bishop before even travelling to that bishop’s diocese. A few Primates have responsibilities of an extra-provincial nature—the example being Cuba where three Primates form the Metropolitan Council that oversees the ministry there.

The question was raised, though not addressed in plenary, about how far Primates had a role in safeguarding the life of the Communion as a whole.

Whatever the similarities or differences between the roles and responsibilities of Primates across the Communion, seeing primacy as a gift rather than a right was a concept expressed by Archbishop Winston of The Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand & Polynesia as he explained the concept of ‘Tikanga’.

He said the word meant “The place where you stand”, that your position was sacred ground gifted to you by your ancestors, your people, the environment. He said that the position of Primate was gifted to the role-bearer as a responsibility for a time and for the future. “You don’t own it,” he said, “the place [role] owns you. It’s a gift, not a right. It’s a privilege.”

Primates spent the afternoon sessions sharing their expectations of Primates’ Meetings. Following a request to the Archbishop of Canterbury he shared with them a short history of the meetings. He explained that, although it had altered over the years, the original purpose of the meeting established in 1978 by the then Archbishop of Canterbury Donald Coggan was an opportunity for “leisurely thought, prayer and deep consultation”.

More fudge announced

Friday, January 28th, 2011

DUBLIN: Rowan Williams will announce new Relief Alliance to Deflect Theological Crisis in the Anglican Communion

By David W. Virtue in Dublin
January 26, 2011

At a meeting of global archbishops in Dublin, Archbishop of Canterbury Dr. Rowan Williams is expected to announce the formation of a new social activist body – A Global Anglican Relief and Development Alliance – in a last ditch effort to deflect the Anglican Communion away from the moral and theological crisis sweeping the communion playing up poverty issues instead.

A dozen orthodox Anglican Primates have absented themselves from a Primates’ meeting here in Dublin because of the theological and moral innovations of The Episcopal Church.

For the past year, since the conclusion of the 2008 Lambeth Conference, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion Office have worked together to move forward the recommendation for the establishment of a new way for Anglicans to globally work together for relief and development.

A news release from the Anglican Alliance cites Williams saying that while we (Anglican Communion leaders) cannot agree on doctrine that should not stop us helping the poor. This new Alliance will cost £400,000 ($636,638) a year for three years and be London based. According to the Anglican Communion Office, this recommendation reflects the urgency to combat the scandal of poverty requiring concerted and coordinated Communion action. “This recommendation has greater urgency today than ever before – the global financial crisis has exacerbated in many parts of the Communion a pre-existing socio-economic crisis marked by widespread poverty, under-employment, growth in inequality and difficult social conditions.”

However, sources tell VOL that Williams is actually restructuring the mission arm of the Anglican Communion in London with this new body. It is an attempt to keep the communion together as it publicly fragments over pansexuality.

The purpose of this alliance (it is not technically an agency) would be to enable funding to Anglican Provinces in Africa and Asia from richer provinces like the Episcopal Church in the US; thus keeping TEC at the global Anglican table and increasing TEC’s influence in the Global South even as it declines numerically at home with fleeing dioceses and parishes over the church’s public rejection of the authority of Scripture on issues of faith and morals.

Several things should be noted here.

The Episcopal Church already has its own funding arm – The Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) fund which gives away millions of dollars in addition to monies distributed through the United Thank Offering (UTO).

Increasingly, orthodox archbishops have been rejecting money from The Episcopal Church because they see it as tainted with sexual sin (pansexuality) and want no part of it. Archbishop Mouneer Anis (Middle East) told VOL recently that he rejected $10,000 from The Episcopal Church’s United Thank Offering because of TEC’s immoral innovations.

Some orthodox Anglican provinces have accepted TEC’s money, like the Sudan, but their archbishop has steadfastly refused to compromise on moral issues and rejects TEC’s stand on the ordination of homogenital priests and bishops, same-sex marriage and rites for same-sex blessings. Sudan Archbishop Deng Bul blasted TEC over the Robinson consecration at a hurriedly held press conference at Lambeth Conference 2008.

The newly formed Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) also has a relief and development arm called the Anglican Relief and Development Fund (ARDF), a name that comes close to what the Archbishop of Canterbury is currently proposing.

The archbishop’s collaborative Alliance venture says it will work at local, regional and global levels to share skills and jointly build capacity and then be integrated into the communion. However, both the cost to make all this work with regular meetings will be prohibitive. One Anglican observer said it could all be done with a secretary and a computer with SKYPE, but that is not how the Anglican Communion works.

However, this initiative to rescue the communion by focusing on poverty issues simply will not work. It is too little, too late. The damage done by TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada, the endless arguments over cross border “violations”, the recent consecration of a lesbian to the episcopacy in the US and the marriage of two lesbian clergy recently in the Diocese of Massachusetts has marked TEC as having “walked apart”. There is now no going back. GAFCON will not be undone. The Archbishop of Canterbury’s “shadow gospel” aptly described by Charles Raven in a book by the same name and the ABC’s focus on poverty issues will not stop the fragmentation of the communion or heal its divisions.

This new Alliance strategy by the ABC will not work. It will not bring the Global South primates back to the table. That day is over.

Primates’ Meeting – Briefing #1

Friday, January 28th, 2011

Anglican Communion News Service

| Posted By : Admin ACO

Days 1 and 2

The 18th Primates’ Meeting of the Anglican Communion opened in Dublin on Tuesday evening in an atmosphere of prayer and purpose. After a welcome and introduction, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams asked those present to hold in their hearts and prayers those Primates unable to attend. He also pointed out that at least a third of the Primates in Dublin were at their first Primates’ Meeting.

Before the Primates attended Night Prayers, Archbishop Rowan gave a short reflection on primatial leadership using the text of Mark 10:35-45.

At the start of Wednesday morning Eucharist, Primates placed, at the foot of the altar, symbols (including photos, food, pictures and other objects) that represented the major missional challenges of their Province. This was so that these local issues are front of mind at any act of worship throughout the week.

Following an official welcome from the Primate of All Ireland Archbishop Alan Harper, he read a letter of welcome from the Taoiseach, Brian Cowen in which Mr. Cowen said that churches have “an important role to play in helping us to understand our current society, and to appreciate the significance of the spiritual and philosophical dimension of the problems and opportunities we face.”

The Irish Prime Minister added that Christian churches have an important mission in global dialogue on an interfaith basis, “The message of tolerance and peace must be loudly proclaimed in these troubled times,” he said.

The Primates spent the remainder of the day sharing with one another, in small groups and at plenary, first their thoughts on the big issues facing the Communion, and then their responses to what they had heard from one another.

Topics shared in plenary included those of mission—how to best share the gospel with the world; of diversity—how Communion members could hold different positions but still work together; of the implications and expectations brought about by different models of primatial leadership; and of the need for the Communion to better address Provincial matters. These included HIV infection; anti-conversion and blasphemy laws; persecution of minorities and situations of national division, as demonstrated in Korea.

The emergence of the Gay Mafia

Friday, January 28th, 2011

January 27th, 2011 Posted in News |

From Cranmer

Following the discrimination conviction against Christian B&B proprietors Peter and Hazelmary Bull, another case is now being brought to the courts.

In March 2010, Michael Black and John Morgan were turned away from Swiss B&B in Cookham, Berkshire. It was the home of Susanne and Francis Wilkinson. Mrs Wilkinson politely told the couple: ‘It is against my convictions for two men to share a bed’, adding ‘this is my private home’.

But now, having seen the success of Martyn Hall and Steven Preddy, and how suing Mr and Mrs Bull has enriched them to the tune of £3,600, Michael Black and John Morgan have decided to be upset.

Very upset, actually.

It’s taken nigh on a year, but so ‘shocked’ are they that they, too, are now intent on suing Christian B&B proprietors to ‘make sure people can’t break the sexual discrimination act and get away with it’.

All groups, of course, have their obnoxious extremists: Peter Tatchell has been the Gay Godfather for quite a few years, purposely ‘outing’ those who wished to remain private, and even clambering up the pulpit of Canterbury Cathedral, while the Archbishop was preaching, in order to protest against the Church of England’s ‘persecution’ of homosexuals by ‘Christian bigots‘.

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