Daily Archives: June 6, 2016

[Telegraph] John Bingham: Cracks in deal to avert Anglican schism over homosexuality

A deal to avert the break-up of the worldwide Anglican Communion risks collapse amid signals that African churches are reassessing ties with the Church of England over the issue of same-sex marriage.

The new leader of a powerful bloc of traditionalist bishops and archbishops – seen as representing the majority of the world’s estimated 80 million Anglicans – said the Church of England had recently crossed a “line” with a series of decisions seen as endorsing a more liberal stance on homosexuality.

The Most Rev Nicholas Okoh, the Archbishop of Nigeria, said many traditionalists now view the British branches of Anglicanism in a similar light to The Episcopal Church (TEC) in the US which has been accused of “heresy” for ordaining openly gay bishops and endorsing same-sex marriage.

Archbishop Okoh ”“ recently elected as chairman of the influential “Gafcon” (Global Anglican Future Conference) group of clerics ”“ also pointedly gave his backing to a new breakaway network of churches in England, set up outside the control of the Church of England.

His intervention is the clearest sign yet of a renewed threat of schism within Anglicanism.

It follows the decision by one Nigerian diocese last week to break off ties with the Church of England Diocese of Liverpool because of the appointment of an American bishop who supports same-sex marriage to a special role in the area.

Last month there was also anger among traditionalists after a cleric from the Church of England’s Oxford diocese took part in a celebration of Desmond Tutu’s daughter’s same-sex wedding in South Africa.

Read it all

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

[Diocese of Virginia] On Bishop Johnston attending 7th Consultation of Anglican Bishops in Ghana

On Wednesday, May 25, the Rt. Rev. Shannon Johnston will join other bishops and primates from across the Anglican Communion in Accra, Ghana, for the 7th Consultation of Anglican Bishops in Dialogue. The Diocese of Virginia hosted the 6th Consultation in Richmond last year, and Bishop Shannon has attended previous meetings in Africa and England. The dialogue group was formed in 2008 at the Lambeth Conference when the Anglican Communion was split over issues of same-sex unions and larger questions of Scriptural interpretation. Membership has grown and shifted over time, and includes bishops from The Episcopal Church, the Anglican Church of Canada, the Church of England, and from dioceses and provinces from all over the continent of Africa. There are 25 bishops expected to attend this year, including Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop and Primate Michael Curry.

The bishops meet to listen, to understand each other’s context of shared ministry in the Gospel, and to facilitate healing and reconciliation. Bishop Shannon describes the consultation as a unique group that does very important work for the Anglican Communion. The testimonies published from each meeting are widely read, discussed, and referenced across the Communion. Bishop Shannon states that, “Over the years, since the second consultation meeting that I attended in Dar-es-Salaam, it has been most gratifying to see the growth in commitment to each other’s place and role in the Communion. Whether or not we come to agreement is not the point..

Read it all

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

Virginia Bishops write to Church Schools regarding 'transitioning' transgender children

Bishop Shannon called for a gathering of representatives from our Church Schools to discuss the reality of transgendered students in our schools. At that time we were not aware of any transgender students in our schools and believed our conversations would put us a step ahead of a quickly coming change. By the time Bishop Susan [Goff] convened a gathering of 42 representatives of our six schools and our summer camps on April 27, 2016, some of our schools were already in conversation with students who are transitioning and with their parents…

Read it all

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

Diocese of Akure, Nigeria dissociates from the Diocese of Liverpool over TEC SSB Bishop appointment

..I received a message from our Primate in Nigeria, who is currently the Chairman of GAFCON today about a partnership that is in the Western news. That there is a three way Diocesan partnership between the Diocese of Liverpool, England, the Diocese of Akure, Nigeria and the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia in the United States.

Also, that recently, the Diocese of Liverpool made the assisting Bishop of Virginia, Susan Goff, an assisting Bishop in Liverpool. Susan Goff is in favour of blessing same sex unions and this has been a part of the litigation against the orthodox in Virginia.

Therefore, in view of the above and being aware of the fact that Nigeria does not support same sex marriage, we in Akure Diocese cannot have any link with Liverpool Diocese.

We pray that Jesus Christ, The Owner of His Church will reveal Himself to us anew in Jesus name.

Yours in His Service,

Simeon Borokini,
Bishop of Akure Diocese.

Read it all

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

(CC) Philip Jenkins– Notes from the Global Church: Unequal dharmas in India

Sarva Dharma Sama Bhava: “All dharmas [truths, or religions] are equally valid.” Indians often cite this noble maxim, which was popularized by Mahatma Gandhi, and the country’s constitution remains firmly secular and democratic. In recent years, though, the country’s religious outlook has darkened to the point that minorities””including both Christians and Muslims””face dangers of severe persecution and violence.

The fact that that threat receives little attention in the West says much about our stereotypes of other world religions. If we saw a situation where tens of millions of Christians were being similarly maltreated by a Muslim regime, Western media and policy makers would speak out vigorously. But when the enemies of religious liberty are Hindu, members of a faith that Americans idealize, the public silence is deafening.

Although India’s Chris­tians do not represent a large proportion of the country’s vast population””only about 3 percent””they number about 40 million, comparable to the larger European nations. India’s Christians suffer from multiple disadvantages, especially because so many derive from people of low or no caste or from tribal communities on the margins of Hindu society. Official reluctance to accept the reality of conversions makes it difficult to assess the true extent of Christian numbers.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Asia, Ethics / Moral Theology, Hinduism, History, India, Inter-Faith Relations, Law & Legal Issues, Other Churches, Other Faiths, Politics in General, Psychology, Religion & Culture, Theology

Scottish General Synod 2016 Agenda and Papers

Of special interest is the “Faith and Order Board Doctrine Committee Paper on the Theology of Marriage” which starts on numbered page 20–take a look.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Religion & Culture, Scotland, Scottish Episcopal Church, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Radical Scottish Episcopal vote may pave way for same sex marriage and clash with Church of England

It is one church separated by a border – but this week Anglicans in the Church of England and in the Scottish Episcopal Church face falling out over the issue of same-sex marriages.

In the progressive corner is the Scottish Episcopal Church – in effect the Anglican church in Scotland – which is preparing to vote for clergy to be allowed to carry out same sex marriages. Meanwhile, its southern neighbours, the Church of England, is on the reactionary side, opposing any such move.

Members of the Scottish Episcopal Church will be asked if they back a change to canon law which currently states that marriage must be between a man and a woman, at the Church’s General Synod in Edinburgh on Friday.

Read it all from The Herald.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), Ethics / Moral Theology, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Scottish Episcopal Church, Sexuality, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(CT) Meet the Man Behind the Bono and Eugene Peterson Conversation

“My aim is to make a case,” he says that night from the podium. “The visual arts . . . enable us to see the world as God sees it. Our sight is broken and needs mending. Artists come along and say, ”˜Hey, I can help.’ ”

Halfway through the lecture, Taylor displays a photo of a multimedia piece called The Chancel, built from panels of plywood interlaid with paint, gold leaf, and obscured Scripture passages.

“This work intends to give visual expression to the resurrection of Christ,” he says. “How many coats of paint?” he calls out to a woman in the crowd.

“Maybe 80?”

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Art, Music, Religion & Culture, Seminary / Theological Education, Theology

A Prayer to Begin the Day from Eric Milner-White

Almighty God, who thyself art love, fill us with the spirit of thy holy love; that our hearts being enkindled by thee, we may for ever love thee, and each other in thee, and all men for thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end.

–Eric Milner-White (1884-1963)

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

From the Morning Scripture Readings

When I am afraid, I put my trust in thee. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust without a fear. What can flesh do to me?

–Psalm 56:3-4

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

(CTV) Christian university takes fight over law school to top courts in Ontario, B.C.

A private Christian university that forbids sexual intimacy outside heterosexual marriage will be in Ontario’s top court this week, seeking a green light for its proposed law school after the province’s law society denied it accreditation.
It’s the latest legal battle for British Columbia-based Trinity Western University, which is fighting similar cases at appeal courts in Nova Scotia and British Columbia.
The case that will be heard Monday at Ontario’s Court of Appeal sees the university go up against the Law Society of Upper Canada, with both sides arguing the other is being discriminatory.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Canada, Education, Ethics / Moral Theology, History, Law & Legal Issues, Religion & Culture, Theology