Daily Archives: June 24, 2007

Notable and Quotable

I would say that in theology, as well as anywhere else, one cannot think enough, think intensively enough, courageously enough, and precisely enough.

–Karl Rahner (1904-1984)

Posted in * Religion News & Commentary, Other Churches, Roman Catholic, Theology

Geoffrey Rowell: Midsummer is a time to reflect on the joy of song

From the (London) Times:

This year marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Charles Wesley, whose hymns still remain a remarkable distillation of Christian faith and experience. It is Charles who prays “Heavenly Adam, Life divine; Change my nature into thine”, showing an understanding of the Christian life and the transforming grace of the Holy Spirit which is close to the Orthodox understanding that we are called to become “partakers of the divine nature”. “Hark the herald angels sing!” teaches the saving mystery of the Incarnation ”“ “veiled in flesh the Godhead see! Hail the incarnate Deity!”

Charles longs for a heart to praise ”“ “a humble, lowly, contrite heart, believing true and clean, which neither life nor death can part, from Him that dwells within.” He prays, in a morning hymn, “Fill me, radiancy divine, scatter all my unbelief”.

Quite coincidentally, this is also the 200th anniversary of another great hymn-writer, Christopher Wordsworth, the nephew of William Wordsworth and Bishop of Lincoln. He taught the faith through his hymns. It was, he said, “the first duty of a hymn-writer to teach sound doctrine, and thus to save souls”.
His hymns were drawn from Scripture and the ancient Fathers of the Church, as we can see in his hymns for Epiphany (“Songs of thankfulness and praise”); Easter (“Alleluia, alleluia, hearts to heaven and voices raise”); and Ascension (“See the conqueror mounts in triumph”).

In the end Charles Wesley is the greater poet and hymn writer, but both he and Christopher Wordsworth are above all teachers of the faith, reminding us that “orthodoxy” does not mean right belief but right glory. Their hymns invite us to lift up our hearts, pointing us to the glory of heaven where we shall be “lost in wonder, love and praise”.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Church History, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Liturgy, Music, Worship

Peter Ould: If you’re going to debate doctrine, then debate doctrine

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canadian General Synod 2007, Ethics / Moral Theology, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology

Canadian Anglicans Vote That Same-sex Blessings are consistent with core doctrine

The ACC News report on this morning’s vote. Only a one vote margin in the bishops to change the outcome.

Update: A CP article is Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canadian General Synod 2007

A186 as Amended Passes in Canadan General Synod

According to Peter at Anglican Essentials Blog the vote was:

C/L 152 / 97 Passed
B 21 / 19 Passed

The final text of the resolution read:

That this General Synod resolves that the blessing of same-sex unions is not in conflict with the core doctrine (in the sense of being creedal) of The Anglican Church of Canada.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canadian General Synod 2007, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)

Anglican church will move to new site in Mandarin, Florida

From the Florida Times-Union:

All Souls Church-Anglican will begin its final service at 9 a.m. Sunday, July 15, in the sanctuary at 10679 Old St. Augustine Road, where members worshipped for 28 years. The first rector, Whitey Haugan (1979-1999), will then lock up for the last time before the congregation walks to a temporary Sunday home at Mandarin Middle School at 5100 Hood Road to complete services.

“The people who are coming will make it [the school auditorium] a church – almost 400, and they are all going with us,” said the Rev. Gene Strickland, the church’s current rector. “While the [Episcopal] diocese may own the property, we have the people.”

Frank Griffin, a member since the early 1990s, is helping search for a new church site. He said there will be mixed emotions during the 2-mile walk to the middle school.

“If you are going to be orthodox and committed to your religion, than the move is the right thing,” Griffin said. “[I will miss] the comfort and the memories there. However, the church family, which is strongly bonded, will stay intact. … We could have capitulated and stayed, or left and started anew.”

Read it all

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Florida

Roman Catholic bishops weigh political involvement after Communion stir in 2004

From AP:

Three years after a few outspoken U.S. Roman Catholic bishops tied together presidential politics, abortion and the Communion rail, leaders of the nation’s largest denomination are starting to speak out again.

Only this time, the political climate is much different.

The Catholic presidential hopeful under criticism for championing abortion rights is a Republican instead of a Democrat, the general election might pit two candidates who believe abortion should remain legal, Democrats control both chambers of Congress and immigration reform has surfaced as a major issue.

As most of the nation’s 268 active Catholic bishops met for a private retreat this week in New Mexico, questions were building about how prominent their voices will be in the 2008 race.

Will some follow the example of Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, R.I., who last month called the pro-abortion rights position of Catholic GOP candidate Rudy Giuliani, “pathetic and confusing?” Will abortion dominate the bishops’ statements on the election, or will immigration and poverty?

Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput said in an interview with The Associated Press that official Catholic involvement depends on which candidates and issues emerge from primary season. A vocal proponent of calling on Catholic politicians and voters to follow church teachings, Chaput also made it clear he thinks the time for behind-the-scenes diplomacy with politicians is over.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, Other Churches, Race/Race Relations, Roman Catholic

$3.2 Billion Move by Bear Stearns to Rescue Fund

From the NY Times:

Bear Stearns Companies, the investment bank, pledged up to $3.2 billion in loans yesterday to bail out one of its hedge funds that was collapsing because of bad bets on subprime mortgages.

It is the biggest rescue of a hedge fund since 1998 when more than a dozen lenders provided $3.6 billion to save Long-Term Capital Management.

The crisis this week from the near collapse of two hedge funds managed by Bear Stearns stems directly from the slumping housing market and the fallout from loose lending practices that showered money on people with weak, or subprime, credit, leaving many of them struggling to stay in their homes.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics

Canadian Anglican Same Sex Union Debate Continues into Today

From CP:

Instead of debating the issue last night, delegates at the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada spent hours wrangling over procedural issues.

Canada’s outgoing primate, or church leader, seemed somewhat fed up after two hours of discussion about technical issues, and even joked the debate would go more smoothly after a good night’s rest.

“It vexes me that Anglicans are prepared to spend more energy in process than substance,” said Archbishop Andrew Hutchison, a comment that drew cheers and clapping from the delegates and observers.

As they debated how the vote would work, Rev. Douglas Stoute urged the 300 delegates to make a decision once the rules are established. The Toronto minister said people want a clear answer.

“They want us to leave here having said something, and not just done a shuffle. This issue is not going to go away,” Stoute said.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canadian General Synod 2007, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)

Wall Street Journal: Christopher Hitchens Book Debunking The Deity Is A Surprise Hit

Summer beach-reading season is just beginning, and already several books have broken out from the pack, such as Walter Isaacson’s biography of Albert Einstein, and Conn and Hal Iggulden’s “The Dangerous Book for Boys.”

But the biggest surprise is a blazing attack on God and religion that is flying off bookshelves, even in the Bible Belt. “God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything,” by Christopher Hitchens, wasn’t expected to be a blockbuster. Its publisher, Twelve, a fledgling imprint owned by France’s Lagardère SCA, initially printed a modest 40,000 copies. Today, seven weeks after the book went on sale, there are 296,000 copies in print. Demand has been so strong that booksellers and wholesalers were unable to get copies a short time after it hit stores, creating what the publishing industry calls a “dark week.” One experienced publishing veteran suggests that Mr. Hitchens will likely earn more than $1 million on this book.

A spin-off is already in the works. Rival publisher Da Capo Press, which is owned by Perseus Books LLC, got in touch with Mr. Hitchens and signed him up to edit, “The Portable Atheist,” a compilation of essays by such writers as Mark Twain and Charles Darwin that will be published in the fall.

“This is atheism’s moment,” says David Steinberger, Perseus’s CEO. “Mr. Hitchens has written the category killer, and we’re excited about having the next book.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, Other Faiths, Religion & Culture

Rowan Williams–In God's company: What is the church?

From the Christian Century:

Breathing the air of Christ””Christ becoming the “atmosphere” in which we live, to borrow the language of a great New Testament scholar, C. F. D. Moule””isn’t only about being in a state of peace but about being in what some would call a “dynamic equilibrium.” Our peace is what it is because it is a flow of unbroken activity, the constant maintenance of relation and growth as we give into each other’s lives and receive from each other, so that we advance in trust and confidence with one another and God. So it is that when the creed moves us on to speak about believing in the Holy Spirit, it also moves us on to speak about our confidence, our trust in the church.

For some, this feels awkward. Surely we don’t believe in the church in the sense that we believe in God or in Christ? It’s a fair point; and in fact it’s already there in the Greek of the Nicene Creed, which says literally that we believe the church. The church is indeed not another reality on the same level as the Father, the Son and the Spirit. But it is a community we can trust.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Archbishop of Canterbury, Ecclesiology, Theology

Same-sex blessing debate to continue in Canadian General Synod

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canadian General Synod 2007, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)

Canadian General Synod Session Evening Session on the Question of Same Sex Unions

I am following the discussion and occasionally commenting on the Anglican Essentials GS blog.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces, Canadian General Synod 2007, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)

Brevard Childs RIP

Some information is here and an interview is there.

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

Canadian Lutheran Same Sex Unions Motion receives 181 votes in favour and 200 votes in opposition

Read it all.

Posted in * Religion News & Commentary, Lutheran, Other Churches, Sexuality Debate (Other denominations and faiths)