Daily Archives: February 7, 2017

Gafcon Chairman Nicholas Okoh's February 2017 letter

There are however serious concerns. It is urged that we must look for contradictory positions to be resolved in ways which are ”˜in some way hidden from us’ (paragraph 8). No reason for this optimism is given, yet it is on this basis that the report says that it is still possible for Anglicans to ”˜walk together’ (paragraph 59) and claims this was what the Anglican Primates agreed when they met in Canterbury in January 2016.

What our resolution agreed in Canterbury actually said was that while ”˜It is our unanimous desire to walk together’, the actions of The Episcopal Church ”˜further impair our communion’. This is in line with the Jerusalem Statement and Declaration which identified rejection of apostolic teaching on sexuality and marriage as a manifestation of a ”˜false gospel’ which required godly discipline.

It seems therefore that the Church of England bishops have recommended the right thing for the wrong reason. They have retained the Church’s traditional teaching, but because they think that holding opposite views together will eventually produce a consensus, not because it represents an apostolic boundary.

This understanding is confirmed by the fact that the report encourages a relaxation of church discipline and confuses pastoral sensitivity with a permissive church culture which already tolerates, in practice, clergy who have contracted same-sex ”˜marriages’….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Primary Source, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ecclesiology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Global South Churches & Primates, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology, Theology: Scripture

Iwan Russell-Jones on the work of Marilynne Robinson: The Hidden Wound in Gilead

Gilead and Home revolve around the inter-related stories of two marginal and misunderstood characters ”“ Grandfather John Ames and Jack Boughton. The first is the paternal grandfather of Rev. John Ames, a Congregationalist pastor who is the putative author of the memoir that comprises Gilead. The second is John Ames Boughton, or simply Jack, the namesake of Reverend Ames and the prodigal son of his best friend, Robert Boughton, a Presbyterian pastor.

Between them, and at different periods in the town’s history, Grandfather Ames and Jack Boughton are the bad conscience of Gilead. The question they ask and the challenge they pose is, effectively, the same: “What is left here in Gilead?” asks Grandfather; “What about this town?” asks Jack, “Could we live here?”[1] In essence they are both asking the ancient biblical question, “Is there no balm in Gilead?” (Jeremiah 8:22). . .

Read it all from Crux.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Books, Religion & Culture, Theology

(WWM) Photographer tells stories of ”˜Boko Haram girls’

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Nigeria, Photos/Photography, Teens / Youth, Terrorism, Theology, Violence, Women

(WaPo) Trump wants to push back against Iran, but Iran is now more powerful than ever

President Trump’s tough talk on Iran is winning him friends in the Arab world, but it also carries a significant risk of conflict with a U.S. rival that is now more powerful than at any point since the creation of the Islamic republic nearly 40 years ago.

With its warning last week that Iran is “on notice,” the Trump administration signaled a sharp departure from the policies of President Barack Obama, whose focus on pursuing a nuclear deal with Iran eclipsed historic U.S. concerns about Iranian expansionism and heralded a rare period of detente between Washington and Tehran.

Many in the region are now predicting a return to the tensions of the George W. Bush era, when U.S. and Iranian operatives fought a shadow war in Iraq, Sunni-Shiite tensions soared across the region and America’s ally Israel fought a brutal war with Iran’s ally Hezbollah in Lebanon.

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Posted in * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Defense, National Security, Military, Ethics / Moral Theology, Foreign Relations, Iran, Middle East, Politics in General, Theology

Comment by the Archbishop of Canterbury in response to the statement by the Bp of Guildford

From there:

“I applaud today’s moving, honest and courageous statement by Andrew Watson, the Bishop of Guildford, by making public his experience of abuse at the hands of John Smyth. The traumatic experience he and others went through is utterly appalling and punishment of this kind is wrong. In meetings with survivors of abuse, I have listened to them, prayed for them and wept with them, and am deeply conscious of their suffering. My continued prayers are with Andrew and all the victims of abuse.”

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Justin Welby, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Archbishop of Canterbury, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Teens / Youth, Theology, Violence

A Statement of the Bp of Guildford, Andrew Watson, regarding his own Iwerne Camp abuse

I am one of the survivors of John Smyth’s appalling activities in the late 1970s and early ’80s. I am also one of the Bishops in the Church of England. This has placed me in a unique and challenging position when it comes to the events of the past few days. My own story is certainly less traumatic than that of some others. I was drawn into the Smyth circle, as they were, and the beating I endured in the infamous garden shed was violent, excruciating and shocking; but it was thankfully a one-off experience never to be repeated. A while later one of my friends attempted suicide on the eve of another session in the shed (a story movingly told in the Channel 4 Report), and at that point I and a friend shared our story.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, Ethics / Moral Theology, Health & Medicine, Pastoral Theology, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Sexuality, Teens / Youth, Theology, Violence

A Prayer to Begin the Day from the Rydal School Hymnal

Deliver us, O God, from injustice, envy, hatred and malice; give us grace to pardon all who have offended us, and to bear with one another even as thou, Lord, dost bear with us, in thy patience and great loving-kindness.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Scripture Readings

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God according to the promise of the life which is in Christ Jesus,

To Timothy, my beloved child:

Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord.

I thank God whom I serve with a clear conscience, as did my fathers, when I remember you constantly in my prayers. As I remember your tears, I long night and day to see you, that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lo”²is and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you. Hence I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; for God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control.

–2 Timothy 1:1-14

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture


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(Tel) Charles Moore–Even Catholics like me will miss the C of E's droll prince, Richard Chartres

Bishop Chartres has had a very untypical episcopacy. The congregations of his diocese have grown. He has opened a new theological college to train future priests. He has never closed a single church. How has he done it? By a clever combination of being traditional and up-to-date.

Traditional because he regards the inherited liturgy, buildings and public role of the Church of England not as burdens but advantages which can draw people to God. I asked him to be the Ecclesiastical Patron of the Rectory Society, which I set up to foster interest in every sort of parsonage. He blessed our tenth anniversary service….

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), CoE Bishops, England / UK, Religion & Culture, Urban/City Life and Issues

(ACNS) Anglican Churches around the globe launch "JustWater"

Cathedrals and churches on four continents have come together to raise awareness and activism about water by launching the JustWater website. It’s an international initiative organised by St George’s Cathedral (Cape Town); St Paul’s Cathedral (London); St Paul’s Cathedral (Melbourne); and Trinity Church Wall Street (New York). The project aims to draw attention to the issues around water – whether these challenges are flooding, drought, rising tides or access to fresh water and sanitation. The Primate of Southern Africa, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba, is the keynote speaker at the launch of the initiative tonight (Monday) in London.

In the coming weeks, major events are scheduled to coincide with the season of Lent and around UN World Water Day on 22 March 2017 to support social justice efforts on water issues. Canon Heather Patacca, Precentor of St Paul’s Cathedral Melbourne, said “For many of us access to fresh water is something we take for granted unlike those who walk half a day to draw water from a well or stream. Nothing exists without water. Water raises issues of justice and equity but looks different in each local context.”

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Energy, Natural Resources, Ethics / Moral Theology, Globalization, Religion & Culture, Theology