Daily Archives: November 18, 2013

(RNS) Methodist bishops asked to charge one of their own for performing same sex wedding

The United Methodist Church’s division over homosexuality grew heated Friday (Nov. 15), as the denomination’s Council of Bishops called for charging retired Bishop Melvin Talbert with presiding at the Oct. 26 wedding of two men, which the church forbids.

The council asked its president, Bishop Rosemarie Wenner, and Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett of the North Alabama Conference, to file a complaint accusing Talbert of undermining the ministry of a colleague and conducting a ceremony to celebrate the wedding of a same-gender couple at Covenant Community United Church of Christ in Center Point, Ala.

Talbert, who served as bishop of the San Francisco area, ignored a request not to perform the ceremony. He has said in the past that the church’s position on homosexuality “is wrong and evil ”¦ it no longer calls for our obedience.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Religion News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Methodist, Other Churches, Pastoral Theology, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(GC Blog) How to Experience Scripture with Your Students

Youth leaders must be able to speak God’s truth into the given circumstances of a student’s life. If you’re ready, this can occur spontaneously while riding in a car, playing Settlers of Catan, or taking part in a service project. No formulas. Just two people listening and responding to one another, their stories made sense through his.

Of course, there’s no shortage of helpful methods for learning Scripture. One that’s shaped me personally is regular group meditation. By “meditation” I mean part rote memorization (chapter and verse) and part prayerful imagination. Beginning on my own, I like to prayerfully consider a cluster of verses based around a particular biblical topic””say, the church.1 Over a week or so, a brief conversational narrative begins to form in my mind that sufficiently explains the topic in a way that’s both orthodox and also unique to my personality. My primary purpose is to know God better through his text, then to share it with others doing the same thing. Once I can distill from a cloud of ideas one or two pithy thesis-like statements, I know I’ve spent transformative time with his Word and am ready to share and discuss with my leader friends.

Sharing is as an act of fellowship. It encourages accountability to the task and is an opportunity to learn from others. As I’m shaped by my time in Scripture, I’m sustained in the valley, and my functional trust in Scripture increases. When we experience and model rich biblical thinking, the incomparable wisdom and power of God’s truth is made apparent not only to ourselves, but to others as well.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Parish Ministry, Theology, Theology: Scripture, Youth Ministry

CoE General Synod November 18th-20th 2013 Links

Wednesday: In the morning The Women Bishops Steering Committee Report has been accepted and in the afternoon the procedure for revision of draft legislation in full Synod was approved

After that Proposals to change the system of election of lay members of Synod were debated and the motion as amended was carried with the removal of the scheme to create an electoral college.
This post will be updated regularly
The Church of England General Synod took place between Monday November 18th and Wednesday November 20th in Church House, London

Some links to audio recordings are here During Synod live streaming was provided here It is not clear if video recordings of the debates will be made available

Some information: Press Release, Agenda, Papers, Daily Reports from the Media Office and

Twitter: #synod and it may be worth following: @CofEgensyn, CofE

Women Bishops debate
Report of morning business
Order Paper for morning business

Debate of the Report of the Steering Committee for the draft Legislation on Women in the Episcopate [GS 1924] [audio of the debate is available here]

The Bishop of Rochester (Chair of the Steering Committee) moved the motion [Report]

Synod passed the following motion [378 votes for; 8 against; 25 abstained]:
That this Synod, welcoming the package of proposals in GS 1924 and the statement of principles endorsed by the House of Bishops at paragraph 12 of GS 1886, invite the House of Bishops to bring to the Synod for consultation in February a draft declaration and proposals for a mandatory disputes resolution procedure which build on the agreement reached by the Steering Committee as a result of its facilitated discussions.

Women Bishops debate continued
Report of afternoon business

Report: “In its afternoon session, the Synod also voted to progress the legislation to its next legislative stage of revision at its next meeting in February.

As a result of the votes carried today, Synod has agreed to dispense with the normal Revision Committee process and move straight to revision in full Synod which next meets in February 2014, thereby clearing the way for a possible vote on final approval later in 2014.”

Responses after the votes from: The Catholic Group in Synod, Archbishop of Canterbury

Resumed debate
Debate was resumed on the motion:
12. ”˜That this Synod request legislative proposals to be brought forward to:
(a) establish an electoral college for elections by the laity to the General Synod and diocesan synods;
(b) make provision by 2020 for elections to the General Synod to be undertaken online; and
(c) make provision by 2015 for nominations for elections to the General Synod to be undertaken by email.’
moved by the Ven. Julian Henderson at the July 2013 group of sessions.

The motion [as amended to remove (a) the establishment of an Electoral College] was carried on a show of hands



[MONDAY and TUESDAY – see below]

As far as the Elves understand it: The proposal being brought forward is what Synod approved in July should be considered by the Steering Committee which was formed, to draft, based on Option 1, a measure and amending canon to make it lawful for women to become bishops, and the repeal of the statutory rights to pass Resolutions A and B under the 1993 Measure, plus the rescinding of the Episcopal Ministry Act of Synod [right to oversight from a ‘flying bishop’ etc]

There is a summary from Law and Religion here of the key Steering Committee’s report [GS 1924] which attaches at Appendices A and B a draft declaration on the Ministry of Bishops and Priests that the House of Bishops could make; and a set of draft regulations for a system for resolving disputes, introducing an “Independent Reviewer.”

Following on from that there is the draft Measure [GS 1925], and Amending Canon 33 [GS 1926] and what is termed an Explanatory Memorandum [GS 1925-6x all of which which will be the subject of closed discussion on Tuesday morning and debate on Wednesday. At this stage only a simple majority of Synod will be required for the matter to go forward to the Revision stage by a future Synod although in order to pass the final measure will still require to pass with a 2/3 majority in each of the three houses of bishops, clergy and laity. According to a House of Bishops Statement in May, if it proceeds final approval could take place in 2014 according to the Steering Committee Report which also thanks Canon David Porter for his role in facilitating conversations among the Steering Committee.


Women in the Episcopate: Statement from the Archbishops
GS 1924 – Report of the Steering Committee for the Draft Legislation on Women in the Episcopate [item 11]
GS 1925 – Draft Bishops and Priests (Consecration and Ordination of Women) Measure [item 503-504]
GS 1926 – Draft Amending Canon No.33 [item 505-506]
GS 1925-6x – Explanatory Memorandum [item 503-506]

Reform Statement, Forward in Faith Statements and

more links to follow

Order Paper

Report of morning business

8am Communion
9:15am – 11:30 am Indaba – Women Bishops groups with a member of the Steering Committee each – no eavesdroppers
11:45am – Legislation: Care of Churches and Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction

Report of afternoon business
The Archbishop of York’s Presidential Address [audio]
Legislation: Church Schools, Ecclesiastical Property; Vacancy in See Committees
Standing Orders Committee Report

The London Diocesan Synod Motion to review working of General Synod and consider non ‘Parliamentary Model’ alternatives, [presumably more Indaba].was lost on a show of hands [Report]

See report on Monday’s business now available and a report from the floor by Stephen Lynas – Bathwellschap. This is the first year that audio of debates has not been available, though some speeches from officials are available here
Order of Business

Archbishop Justin’s presentation to the General Synod [audio]

A Motion on Intentional Evangelism was carried on a show of hands [Report]:


As passed: That this Synod in the light of the priority of evangelism and making new disciples:
(a) support the formation of an Archbishops’ Task Group on Evangelism with the terms of reference and timetable as set out in GS 1917 and urge that its membership include:
(i) staff of Anglican home mission agencies with expertise in helping local churches engage in effective evangelism and disciple-making, and
(ii) those with a proven record in those disciplines at local level;
(b) call upon the Task Group to make its first priority a new call to prayer;
(c) commend to the Task Group an initial programme for its work around the seven disciplines of evangelisation as set out in the same paper;
(d) call upon every diocesan and deanery synod and every PCC to spend the bulk of one meeting annually and some part of every meeting focusing on sharing experiences and initiatives for making new disciples; and
(e) urge every local church in 2014 prayerfully to try at least one new way, appropriate to their local context, of seeking to make new disciples of Jesus Christ.

Introduction by the Archbishop of York

Various incomprehensible legislation [to listeners] has been considered

Questions [here] were answered – including on the Pilling Report to the House of Bishops at Qu’s 39-47 – Thinking Anglicans have a record of Archbishop Welby’s answers on Pilling here and there is now audio of the Question and Answer session here [mp3]

Women Bishops: The Bishop of Rochester gave a presentation on Women in the Episcopate {audio]
[Note: There will be small group Indaba-daba-doo on Tuesday morning and the debate will be on Wednesday]

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

(Charisma) Daniel Kolenda: God Is Going to Give this Rising Generation an Old Message

The Empowered21 Next Gen Youth Leaders Network (NGYN21) hosted a summit comprised of youth leaders from around the globe. The youth leaders discussed topics such as Spirit-empowered living in the 21st century, the impact of the Holy Spirit on discipleship and developing young Spirit-empowered disciples in the ministry.

“We seem to think there is a different method used in other countries,” said Christ for All Nations President Daniel Kolenda. “The gospel works with humanity and all cultures. We were created to receive it. Just preach its simplicity and let the Holy Spirit do the drawing. God is going to give our generation a message that is so old, they think it is new. The hub is the gospel of salvation; the other spokes will align.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Teens / Youth, Young Adults, Youth Ministry

Serge Toubiana, the director of the Cinematheque Francaise, makes an inspiring visit to Israel

”˜I’m very optimistic about the future of cinema,” says Serge Toubiana, the director of the Cinematheque Francaise, sitting in the library at the Jerusalem Cinematheque.

Toubiana was in Israel last week, a guest of the Tel Aviv Cinematheque, currently celebrating its 40th anniversary.

While Toubiana’s formal title certainly sounds impressive enough to the casual observer, the fact is that Toubiana could be called the King of Cinema.

The Cinematheque Francaise is the mecca for film lovers worldwide.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Europe, France, History, Israel, Middle East, Movies & Television

(NY Times On Religion) Off the Court, a Film’s Lens on Asian-American Faith

Four years later, of course, Jeremy Lin is a brand name and a phenomenon, having burst into fame with the Knicks last year and gone on to a lucrative free-agent contract with the Houston Rockets. Just the other night, he put up 21 points at Madison Square Garden in a victory over his former team.

As for the documentary, “Linsanity” has been shown on the festival circuit and in art houses, and is now moving into the download and DVD part of its cinematic life. At one level, the film is a quintessential saga of sporting triumph, with Lin as the perpetual underdog who defies every doubter and conquers every challenge to achieve his dream.

In a deeper way, though, “Linsanity” brings to a mass audience not just an Asian-American sports star, but an Asian-American Christian. The film shows Lin not only tossing in three-pointers and piercing down the lane, but also repeatedly speaking of divine direction, divine intercession, divine will.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Asia, Movies & Television, Other Churches, Religion & Culture, Sports, Theology

(Diocese of Guildford) The Bishop of Guildford meets the Nigerian Primate

A major discussion centred on the Church of Nigeria’s opposition to what it considers concessions made in the Church of England to same-sex relationships, and the different cultural contexts of Nigeria and the UK. The Primate spoke with candour, emphasising that ripples of decisions made by the Church of England were felt strongly in Nigeria, often drawing criticism to the Anglican Church of Nigeria from other Nigerian denominations and faiths seeking to claim moral high ground.

In response, Bishop Christopher clarified the Church of England’s unchanged position on marriage, and asked for prayer as the General Synod continues its thinking on women bishops and human sexuality in the coming years. He also pledged prayer, particularly for Christian communities coming under increasing attack from militant Islamist groups in the north of Nigeria.

Read it all.

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

(Reuters) Praying in ruined churches, Filipinos face up to massive rebuilding

Survivors of Typhoon Haiyan flocked to ruined churches on Sunday, kneeling in prayer under torn roofs as the Philippines faced an enormous rebuilding task from the storm that killed at least 3,681 people and displaced 4 million.

At Santo Niño Church, near the waterfront in the flattened city of Tacloban, birds flitted between the rafters overhead as women moved through the pews with collection plates. At the end of mass, the Roman Catholic congregation broke into applause.

Rosario Capidos, 55, sat crying in one row, hugging her nine-year-old grandson, Cyrich.

Read it all.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Asia, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Natural Disasters: Earthquakes, Tornadoes, Hurricanes, etc., Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Philippines, Religion & Culture, Roman Catholic, Spirituality/Prayer

A Prayer for the Feast Day of Hilda of Whitby

O God of peace, by whose grace the abbess Hilda was endowed with gifts of justice, prudence, and strength to rule as a wise mother over the nuns and monks of her household, and to become a trusted and reconciling friend to leaders of the Church: Give us the grace to respect and love our fellow Christians with whom we disagree, that our common life may be enriched and thy gracious will be done, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day

O God, who art nigh to all them that call upon thee in truth; who art thyself the Truth, whom to know is life eternal: Instruct us with thy divine wisdom, and teach us thy law; that we may know the truth and walk in it; through him in whom the truth was made manifest, even Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord.

–from the thought of Saint Augustine

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

From the Morning Scripture Readings

I will sing of thy steadfast love, O LORD, for ever; with my mouth I will proclaim thy faithfulness to all generations. For thy steadfast love was established for ever, thy faithfulness is firm as the heavens.

–Psalm 89:1-2

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(CEN) Diocese of North West Australia may opt out of marriage

The Bishop of North West Australia has warned that if the state or federal governments legalize same-sex marriage, Anglican clergy in his diocese would no longer serve as marriage registrars.

The statement by the Rt. Rev. Gary Nelson follows the decision last month by the Australian Capital Territory to legalize same-sex marriage ”“ a move that has been challenged by the federal government as being unconstitutional.

Read it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

Julian Mann: General Synod is not great but Indaba-daba-doo would be worse

A motion is going before this week’s Synod in London calling for a review of the ‘parliamentarian’ way in which its debates are conducted. The Daily Telegraph’s religious affairs editor, John Bingham, reports that the critical views of the revisionist Bishop of Salisbury, the Right Revd Nicholas Holtam, about the style of Synod have inspired those pushing for a review.

Ironic that, given that Bishop Holtam recently likened opponents of gay marriage to supporters of apartheid. Now the Holtam brigade apparently want to extinguish the fires of odium theologicum with a pile of indaba-daba-doo.
If every member of the General Synod were an orthodox Anglican who upheld the biblical doctrine of the Church of England as expressed in our Book of Common Prayer, 39 Articles of Religion and Ordinal, then there would be no false teachers to oppose.

Without false teachers getting up to trumpet revisionist views sanctioning immoral life-styles, General Synod would be a much better decision-making body than it currently is and its disagreements, inevitable in any council of sinful human beings, would be much more agreeable.

But that is not the present reality of Synod. So parliamentary has got to be a lot better than indaba-daba-doo, otherwise it really would be ‘win-win’ for the false teachers.

Read it all

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

(Telegraph) Church of England discusses overhaul of ”˜rude and unchristian’ Synod

… members are also being asked to debate a motion calling for a review of how the Synod itself operates including the parliamentarian way debates are conducted and whether the complex system of electing members is now “fit for purpose”.

An official Synod briefing paper warns that members are now seen by many outside the Church seen as “rude and poor examples of Christians”.

The motion also questions whether the Synod should meet just once a year, instead of two or three times as at present, to encourage younger people with busy careers and families to stand for election.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Theology

The Latest Edition of the Diocese of South Carolina Newspaper, the Jubilate Deo

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Adult Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Media, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Stewardship, Theology

(AP) Nonprofit uses horses to do Christian work

ORANGEBURG, SC ”” A nonprofit Christian ministry is working to improve the lives of young people and adults through a mission that involves a mix of horses and skills training.

Cope couple Dan and Jan White started God It Made Ranch a year ago as the 41st mission station of Columbia-based Christ Central Ministries Inc., which was founded in 1992 by Pastor Jimmy Jones and had a food ministry as its first mission. Women and children’s shelters, men’s shelters, veterans’ transitional housing and clothing distribution are among CCM’s other missions.

“But we’re the first horse ranch. They had been praying for one of these for a very long time. I moved to Lexington where my dad lives a year ago, and that’s how I found Christ Central,” Jan White said. “I started volunteering for the children’s shelter, the women’s shelter and the homeless shelter. They also have a GED program and a rehab center.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * General Interest, * South Carolina, Animals, Charities/Non-Profit Organizations, Religion & Culture

(Vancouver Sun) Four women running to be next New Westminster Anglican bishop

Four female priests with strong resumes are running for election to be the next Vancouver-area Anglican bishop.

The women are among eight candidates seeking to replace outgoing Bishop Michael Ingham, who became the focus of a storm in the 60-million-member global Anglican communion when he approved the blessing of homosexual relationships.

The women who have been nominated to run for bishop are Rev. Ellen Clark-King, vicar of Vancouver’s Christ Church Cathedral; Rev. Dawn Davis, who is based in Toronto; Rev. Lynne McNaughton, a former Vancouver School of Theology instructor now at St. Clement’s Church in North Vancouver and Rev. Melissa Skelton, an Episcopalian priest and church educator in Seattle, Wash.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Church of Canada, Anglican Provinces