Daily Archives: July 6, 2008

ABC Sydney interviews the Primate of the Anglican Church of Australia, Dr Phillip Aspinall

PHILLIP ASPINALL: Oh well I think if people tried to make off with property that belongs to the Anglican Church, the trustees of that property in the church at law would be, would have an obligation to protect it.

I hope we don’t get to that point, I mean I hope sense will prevail and respect for people will prevail and that kind of thing wont eventuate but you know people who hold at law, positions of trustees where they have a responsibility to ensure property is used for a particular purpose, have obligations at law to protect it.

MONICA ATTARD: It would be a very dangerous route I imagine because I think at the moment the situation in the United States at least is that a lot of the decisions are going the way of those who are attempting to move away from the mainstream church.

Is that something that might give you pause to think here?

PHILLIP ASPINALL: Oh look I think there are more important reasons for pause, nobody wants to resort to law but, there are no winners, once you get into court cases about these kinds of issues, there are no winners.

People should understand what the ethos and spirit of life in the Anglican Church is about and abide by that spirit and live by the family rules.

MONICA ATTARD: Have you discussed this option with the Archbishop of Canterbury?

PHILLIP ASPINALL: No I haven’t.

MONICA ATTARD: Is it something that you will at Lambeth?

PHILLIP ASPINALL: No, I don’t intend to.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Analysis, Anglican Church of Australia, Anglican Provinces

Federer and Nadal in a Nail Biter

A superb Wimbledon final going on.

Now to a tie breaker in the fourth set.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Sports

Church mute over talks with Vatican

The Church of England would not confirm or deny a report that senior bishops have held secret talks with Vatican officials over the crisis in the Anglican Communion.

The Church of England bishops met senior advisors of Pope Benedict XVI to discuss the issue of homosexual priests and women bishops, the Sunday Telegraph newspaper reported.

The news of the meeting comes ahead of a crucial vote on Monday at the General Synod, the Church of England’s ruling body, on how far to accommodate parishes and clergy who oppose women bishops.

A Church of England spokesman said: “This is one of a plethora of stories on the internet and in print ahead of Monday’s debate and it will be down to General Synod to determine the way ahead on this issue.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Other Churches, Roman Catholic

Jane Hedges: Women bishops shouldn't scare the Synod

“Church in crisis over women priests.” This is the kind of headline that was appearing in the press 30 years ago when the general synod of the Church of England began to debate the ordination of women.

I was at that time training at theological college, along with a small number of other women. Like most of them I was a theology graduate studying an identical course to the male ordinands.

However, at the end of the training I knew I would be a deaconess, unable like the male deacons to progress to the priesthood. I would have to live with the frustration which lay ahead, because, unable to preside at the eucharist or pronounce absolution, my options in terms of appointments would be very limited.

How things have changed.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops

Damian Thompson: Bishops plan conversion to Rome

I’m glad that Jonathan Wynne-Jones has respected the anonymity of the bishops in question. We at the Catholic Herald have known for some time about these historic negotiations. I pray that they succeed.

What one of the bishops has made clear to us is that they are worried that the liberal English Catholic hierarchy will throw a spanner in the works. Yet I infer from Jonathan’s report that the most liberal of all the bishops, Kieran Conry of Arundel and Brighton, is apparently prepared to countenance Anglican converts retaining some elements of their tradition. Has he had his arm twisted?

The attitude of Pope Benedict is crucial. He is very well aware that, in the years 1992 to 1994, the Bishops of England and Wales put pressure on Cardinal Hume to resist any concessions to Anglicans wishing to convert en masse.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Other Churches, Roman Catholic

Ugandan bishop takes battle for Anglican soul to London

As the divisions in the Anglican faith grow wider ahead of the Lambeth conference in the UK over homosexuality, Uganda’s Archbishop was in London last week to drum up support for traditional Anglican teachings.

But Archbishop Henry Orombi denied trying to ”˜poach’ traditional Church of England supporters.

Archbishop Orombi, who is Archbishop of Uganda as well as Archbishop Peter Jensen of Sydney, Australia and Archbishop Greg Venables, Primate of South America’s Southern Cone, were in London last week to address a meeting of the Church of England supporters on the formation of a new grouping within the church known as the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans.

The meeting and the setting up of Foca drew strong criticism from the spiritual head of the Anglican faith, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.

But the three clergymen denied that they were trying to “seize power” within the church. Archbishop Orombi said that he had travelled to Britain to ”˜help restore traditional theology’ to the mother church.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Provinces, Church of Uganda, Uganda

Anglican bishops in secret Vatican summit

Senior Church of England bishops have held secret talks with Vatican officials to discuss the crisis in the Anglican communion over gays and women bishops.

They met senior advisers of the Pope in an attempt to build closer ties with the Roman Catholic Church, The Sunday Telegraph has learnt.

Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, was not told of the talks and the disclosure will be a fresh blow to his efforts to prevent a major split in the Church of England.

In highly confidential discussions, a group of conservative bishops expressed their dismay at the liberal direction of the Church of England and their fear for its future.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Religion News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), Other Churches, Roman Catholic

Despair Drives Suicide Attacks by Iraqi Women

Wenza Ali Mutlaq walked a bit uncertainly up the long street near the main government offices here on June 22, the hot wind stirring her heavy black abaya. She passed the concrete barricades put up to ward off suicide car bombers and made her way alone, almost haphazardly.

Suddenly, a police car zoomed in. A policeman got out to talk with her. And then their lives were over ”” torn apart, along with 14 other people, by the huge blast of fire from her concealed explosive vest.

Ms. Mutlaq, who was in her 30s and whose attack was captured on a security video, was the 18th female suicide bomber of the war to strike in Diyala Province, which has been hit by female attackers much more frequently than any other province of Iraq, according to Iraqi police records and the American military. So far, 11 of the 20 suicide bombings carried out by women in Iraq this year have occurred in Diyala.

Why so many women? Why now? In a particularly painful twist, the phenomenon seems to have arisen at least in part because of successes in detaining and killing local members of Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia, a homegrown Sunni insurgent group that American intelligence officials say is led by foreigners.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Iraq War

Obama Sets Off a Debate on Ties Between Religion and Government

He was two-thirds of the way through his remarks when he inserted the six words with the potential to put his whole effort at risk. Speaking “as someone who used to teach constitutional law,” he spelled out “a few basic principles” to reassure listeners that such partnerships between religious groups and the government would not endanger the separation of church and state.

“First,” he said, “if you get a federal grant, you can’t use that grant money to proselytize to the people you help, and you can’t discriminate against them ”” or against the people you hire ”” on the basis of their religion.”

That little phrase between the dashes ”” “or against the people you hire” ”” ignited a political explosion. “Fraud,” declared Bill Donohue of the Catholic League. “What Obama wants,” Mr. Donohue said, is “to secularize the religious workplace.” In its newsletter, the conservative Family Research Council called Mr. Obama’s position “a body blow to religious groups that apply for federal funds.” No less heated reactions came from the other end of the political spectrum, where the Obama proposal was denounced not for that short phrase but for what liberals saw as an abandonment of their principles and part of a suspicious move toward the center.

The intense reaction on both sides was pretty predictable, but some people offered more analytic reactions. They welcomed Mr. Obama’s stance, yet made it clear that those six words pointed to deeper questions about religious freedom that could very well seal the fate not only of any new and potentially improved partnerships between government and religious groups but also even those partnerships that, in reality, had been operating for decades.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Religion & Culture, US Presidential Election 2008

As Gas Prices Soar, Elderly Face Cuts in Aid

Early last month, Jeanne Fair, 62, got her first hot meals delivered to her home in this lake town in the sparsely populated southwestern part of the state. Then after two deliveries the meals stopped because gas prices had made the delivery too expensive.

“They called and said I was outside of the delivery area,” said Mrs. Fair, who is homebound and has not been able to use her left arm since a stroke in 1997.

Faced with soaring gasoline prices, agencies around the country that provide services to the elderly say they are having to cut back on programs like Meals on Wheels, transportation assistance and home care, especially in rural areas that depend on volunteers who provide their own gas. In a recent survey by the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, more than half said they had already cut back on programs because of gas costs, and 90 percent said they expected to make cuts in the 2009 fiscal year.

“I’ve never seen the increase in need at this level,” said Robert McFalls, chief executive of the Area Agency on Aging in Palm Beach, Fla., whose office has a waiting list of 1,500 people. Volunteers who deliver meals or drive the elderly to medical appointments have cut back their miles, Mr. McFalls said.

Read it all from the front page of today’s New York Times.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Aging / the Elderly, Economy, Energy, Natural Resources

Troops mark their third Fourth in Iraq

Watch it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, Iraq War

Notable and Quotable (III)

Vice is a monster of so frightful mien,
As to be hated needs but to be seen;
Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face,
We first endure, then pity, then embrace

–Alexander Pope (1688”“1744)

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, Notable & Quotable, Poetry & Literature

Notable and Quotable (II)

When you have to make a choice and don’t make it, that is in itself a choice.

–William James (1842-1910)

Posted in * General Interest, Notable & Quotable

London Times: Church of England faces ruin over women bishops

The Bishop of Manchester, the Right Rev Nigel McCulloch, who chaired the group that drew up the proposals for women bishops, warned of the “dangers” of further delay. He said: “The moment for making choices has come.”

He said the Church should be clear about the consequences of going ahead, which he admitted “would represent a very significant new direction and the withdrawal of assurances offered 15 years ago.”

He also admitted the Church’s tendency to muddle through. “We remain perplexed over how to distinguish between good muddle and bad muddle. When does principled pragmatism and a generosity of spirit topple over into theological incoherence and the loss of any clear guiding principles?”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops

General Synod – Summary of Business Conducted Today

Check it out, including full audio for those interested.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE)