Daily Archives: January 18, 2009

Stephen Noll's Address at the Mere Anglicanism Conference

The two understandings of discipline and the roles of Canterbury and the Primates collided at the Primates’ Meeting in Dar es Salaam in February 2007. The early rounds of the conflict went to Rowan Williams, who had invited Presiding Bishop Katherine Schori despite a recommendation in the Dromantine Communiqué that Episcopal Church officials refrain from attending Communion events until Lambeth 2008. He then set the agenda of the meeting with only four hours devoted to the Episcopal Church’s reaction, and he endorsed a Joint Standing Committee report which claimed that the Episcopal Church had satisfied the conditions of the Windsor Report and the Dromantine Communiqué.

At this point, the Global South Primates interrupted the set agenda and pushed back.[46] The final Communiqué was surprisingly strong, in which the Primates “unanimously” [made their recommendations]….

For a few brief weeks, it appeared that a final separation was imminent. Then Canterbury struck back:

1. by issuing invitations to Lambeth 2008 to all Episcopal bishops except Gene Robinson (May 2007);

2. by accepting an invitation to the House of Bishops meeting in New Orleans (September 2007) and commissioning a report from the Joint Standing Committee that was not part of the Dar “process”;[50]

3. by denying by word and deed that September 30 was a real deadline; and

4. by giving the Episcopal Church a weak pass in his Advent 2007 letter, which was all that was necessary to get it over the hurdles posed by the Dar Communiqué.

Most significantly, in the year intervening between Dar and Lambeth 2008, Archbishop Williams refused to call a follow-up Primates’ Meeting, despite the clear expectation in the Communiqué that he would reconvene the Primates to judge the Episcopal Church’s response and despite an urgent appeal from the Global South Steering Committee that he do so. Apparently the Archbishop had concluded from the Dar es Salaam Meeting that the Primates’ authority had been enhanced too much and that they needed to be relegated to the B-league as an honorary council of advice.[51] The hope of Communion-wide discipline of those who had broken fundamental Christian doctrine had evaporated in a cloud of verbiage and dithering.

Read it carefully and read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Analysis, Archbishop of Canterbury, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Instruments of Unity, Lambeth 2008, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, Theology, Windsor Report / Process

Bishop Iker’s address to the Mere Anglicanism conference

At the core of the present fragmentation in the life of the Anglican Communion has been an avoidance of the conciliar process beyond the national level and an elevation of provincial autonomy over catholic consensus through the councils of the wider church. The conciliarist principle holds that local option must submit to the consensus of the wider church, which represents the whole church, not just a segment of it. Lesser synods must submit to the decisions of greater synods. Though the Anglican Communion has the structures in place that could promote conciliarism as a way of addressing current controversies, particularly the Lambeth Conference of Bishops and the Primates’ Meeting, these instruments of unity have been prevented from functioning in an effective way.

The Windsor Report (2004) proposed a conciliar approach to addressing the crisis prompted by the Robinson consecration and the blessings of same sex unions in North America. However, the Archbishop of Canterbury refused to discipline offending bishops by not inviting them to participate in the Lambeth Conference. The Primates’ Meeting was prevented from following through on the moratoria demands they had made of the Bishops of The Episcopal Church in their Dar es Salaam Communiqué (2007), and the 2008 Lambeth Conference was carefully orchestrated to prevent the Bishops from acting as a council of the church to address the sexuality crisis that has so deeply divided us.

Until the Anglican Communion addresses the prevailing system of elevating provincial autonomy over all else, we will be unable to function as a conciliar church and address controversy as a truly catholic body. Any claim to autonomy must be understood within the context of what it means to be a part of the larger body of the church catholic. There are limits to provincial autonomy that fall short of independence from the rest of the church and the principle of common consent. When we speak of autonomy, it is always autonomy in communion and interdependence. This has been made more difficult to address in light of the fact that the Lambeth Conferences have intentionally been designed to act merely as conferences, without legislative or canonical authority. They have not been seen as councils or synods of bishops with anything but a certain kind of moral authority. And when Lambeth resolutions are rejected or ignored, as in the last decade, there are no consequences, no discipline, and no accountability. Instead of discipline for American and Canadian bishops who openly rejected the teaching of the 1998 Lambeth Resolution 1:10 and refused to comply with the recommendations of the Windsor Report, Archbishop Williams and his planning committee decided that Lambeth 2008 just would not adopt any resolutions or make any recommendations. We would simply have carefully orchestrated indaba groups and times for honest sharing of feelings.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Ecclesiology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Instruments of Unity, Lambeth 2008, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, Theology, Windsor Report / Process

Prosperity Gospel on Skid Row?

Some of the high-flying icons of the prosperity gospel””the belief that God rewards signs of faith with wealth, health, and happiness””have run into financial turbulence.

Not all of their troubles can be blamed on the nation’s economic crisis, say critics of the name-it-and-claim-it theology found in some charismatic churches.

“I believe the charismatic movement, of which I am a part, is in the midst of a dramatic overhaul,” said J. Lee Grady, editor of Charisma magazine. “God is shaking us.” Grady predicts the movement will look much different in a few years as it refocuses on evangelism and overcoming what he calls the distraction of “materialism, flashy self-promotion, and foolish carnality.” But Scott Thumma, a Hartford Seminary sociologist who studies megachurches, is not so certain.

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Posted in Uncategorized

The Al Mohler Radio Programme: Bill Dickson on recent Episcopal/Anglican Developments

As the… [Episcopal] Church in the United States of America… [TEC] has moved further into theological liberalism and away from biblical fidelity, many evangelical American Anglicans have ventured out in search of faithful church structures. In a special broadcast from the Mere Anglicanism Conference in Charleston (SC), Dr. Mohler welcomes Rev. Dr. William Dickson””rector of St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Forth Worth, TX–to the program to discuss the significance of these developments not only for Anglicans, but for evangelicals at large.

Listen to it all.

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

Israel Declares Cease Fire; Hamas Says It Will Fight On

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel announced late Saturday night that the Israeli military would begin a unilateral cease-fire in Gaza within hours while negotiations continued on how to stop the resupply of Hamas through smuggling from Egypt.

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Posted in Uncategorized

Clifford Longley on the way of reconciliation and forgiveness

Barack Obama talked a lot in his election campaign about a change of strategy in foreign policy. He said he was willing to talk to America’s enemies. The list includes Cuba and Venezuela as well as North Korea; more controversial still was his proposal to talk to Iran. But it also includes a list of Middle Eastern enemies, such as Hezbollah, Hamas and Syria.

Whether his new policy stretches to opening a dialogue with the Taliban he hasn’t said. But the change of tone is clear. Hard power, force projection, hasn’t achieved much. In many case it’s made matters worse. That is his argument for trying something else. Many of his foreign affairs appointments will start being ratified by the Senate this week, where his fresh approach will be on display in detail.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, Defense, National Security, Military, Foreign Relations

New Video of US Air Flight 1549 Landing in the Hudson

There is no sound and the plane is off in the distance but you get to see the beginning of the landing and the end if you look carerfully.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Travel

Captain Sully a not-so-average American Hero

Watch it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Travel