I have to wonder, in light of the recent stories highlighted below, whether it’s still worth any reader’s time to generate posts about the Anglican Communion.
Daily Archives: August 1, 2016
Same-sex marriage and opposite-sex civil partnerships
On Friday, the Marriage and Civil Partnership (Amendment) Act 2016 came into force on the Isle of Man following its approval by Tynwald earlier this year. It will be remembered that homosexuality was only decriminalized in 1992 and official recognition for same-sex couples was not available until 2011, when civil partnerships were introduced. An important aspect of the new law is that it permits opposite-sex couples to enter civil partnerships and, even though it is not part of the United Kingdom, the Isle of Man has become the first jurisdiction in the British Isles to offer such a choice to heterosexual couples.
We will watch with interest the response of the Diocese of Sodor and Man to these developments ”“ perhaps this is something to be left for the in-tray of the next Lord Bishop, following the retirement of Robert Paterson on 11 November 2016?
The Archbishop of Canterbury has chosen to base the reconciliation ministry in Coventry Cathedral after previously spending his time at the Cathedral between 2002 and 2007 as a Canon for Reconciliation.
The new adviser and her team will be based here ”“ and Sarah will be licensed as an Honorary Canon of the Cathedral.
Sarah will work alongside the Cathedral’s own reconciliation team, led by Canon Dr Sarah Hills, and will bring her substantial experience to the ministry of reconciliation while supporting Archbishop Justin in his priority of reconciliation.
Sarah joins amid a busy time for the Cathedral which has hosted events in the past months including an Iftar for the local Muslim community, listening circles for those on either side of the post referendum debate and spaces for prayer or reflection following the tragic events in Orlando, and in Nice.
Merciful God, whose servant Joseph of Arimathaea with reverence and godly fear did prepare the body of our Lord and Savior for burial, and did lay it in his own tomb: Grant, we beseech thee, to us thy faithful people grace and courage to love and serve Jesus with sincere devotion all the days of our life; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
— TrueHolyFace (@TrueHolyFace) July 5, 2016
O Lord Jesus Christ, who didst drive forth from the temple those who profaned the holy place, saying to them, My house shall be called the house of prayer: Make us so to love the habitation of thy house and the place where thy honour dwelleth, that with humility and godly fear we may draw near to worship thee; who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end.
Then we will never turn back from thee; give us life, and we will call on thy name! Restore us, O LORD God of hosts! let thy face shine, that we may be saved!
From July 25, 2015
Jesus says a remarkable thing to his disciples. (John 14:12). He says to them, greater things than I have done you shall do. He has healed the sick. He has fed the multitudes in the desert. He has driven out the evil spirit and set the captives free. He has raised the dead.
Yet he says to his disciples ”“ greater things than I have done you shall do. And this prophecy has come true. Think of the millions that have been helped through the ministry of Christian hospitals. People forget that hospitals are a Christian invention. Millions also have been helped and healed by the ministry of Christian prayer often working hand in glove with the practitioners of the healing arts. Think of the millions of poor that have been fed and people of all sorts who have been liberated from addictions and depression and other oppressions of the spirit. Think of the worldwide effort to eliminate slavery ”“ heroically led by Christian disciples such as William Wilberforce and John Newton ”“ the author of the hymn Amazing Grace. Literally millions upon millions of captives have been set free.
The lame walk and the blind see not only literally but figuratively. People who have been limping through life ”“ they find Christ or better Christ finds them ”“ the church enfolds them ”“ embraces them ”“ they become part of the community of the Holy Spirit ”“ of Christ’s body the church where the lifeblood of his sacrificial love comes through the whole body ”“and people who have been limping through life begin to walk and run. The prophet Isaiah says that they who wait upon the Lord will rise up as on eagle wings. They shall walk and not tire. They shall run and not faint. People who have been blind to the reality of God ”“ to the significance of eternal and holy things ”“ now see a whole dimension to life they could not see before. Their eyes are opened to see who God is, who Jesus is and to recognize the Lord in the stranger at the door.
And the dead are raised by the millions, as people who are dead in their sins without the knowledge of God and without hope for this life or the life of the world to come discover new real and abundant life ”“ a new life with God and with their neighbors that begins now and which the grave cannot hold..
…..interestingly, follow-up surveys of a different group of veterans 50 years after the war continued to show links – though not straightforward ones – between soldiers’ experience of combat and their religious behaviour. Those who described their war experience as negative attended church 21 per cent more often; those who described it positively attended 26 per cent less often. Whether the trauma of war made soldiers more religious, or whether already religious soldiers responded differently to combat, the researchers could not say.
In a lecture C.S. Lewis gave to undergraduates at Oxford just weeks after the outbreak of World War II, he spoke of one of war’s (potentially salutary) side effects as its capacity to bring home to us realities we can otherwise mostly ignore:
What does war do to death? It certainly does not make it more frequent; 100 per cent of us die, and the percentage cannot be increased … Yet war does do something to death. It forces us to remember it. The only reason why the cancer at sixty or the paralysis at seventy-five do not bother us is that we forget them. War makes death real to us…
Lewis, in line with a long tradition of Christian and other philosophical thought, interpreted the immediacy that war lends to life and death as corresponding, in some way, to a reality often obscured by the hum of our daily lives when not in crisis. “We see unmistakably the sort of universe in which we have all along been living,” he suggests, “and must come to terms with it.”
It may, after all, be worth heeding the instincts of those in foxholes. British Army chaplain John Lewis Bryan wrote about his experience of Japanese POW camps in Malaya during World War II that the “one request of all ranks” was for a Bible..
The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), yesterday, lamented the rising spate of attack by herdsme”Žn on farming communities across the country, while it called on the Federal Government to take decisive actions to disarm Fulani herdsmen, so as to stem the growing wave of attack and killings of harmless farmers.
In a communiquÃ© issued by the Diocese of Kubwa, on the second session of the third synod in St. Bartholomew’s Cathedral , Kubwa , Abuja, said the attacks on farming communities is inimical to Nigeria’s desire to diversify its economy through agriculture.