Anglican Samizdat

April 30, 2009

The Anglican Church of Canada’s Vision 2019

Filed under: Aniglican Network in Canada — David @ 6:10 pm

There are some more interesting comments on the ACoC site. Since I appear to be persona non gratis and can’t leave comments there, here are some observations on recent entries:

Frank Wirrell says:

April 6, 2009 at 11:25 pm

The comments with respect to justice sound good but to thank the Primate is definitely stretching the truth. The lack of any justice toward orthodox parishes and Anglicans can only be described as the work of Satan. The writer should carefully examine his statement that we should get past the same-sex issues. That issue is simply the tip of the iceberg and demonstrates a complete rejection of God’s word. So-called bishops, including the Primate, that are prepared to claim they can bless same-sex unions are not only deceiving themselves but are deceiving and misleading those involved. Each of us has a tendency to sin in one area or another and that includes being involved in homosexual activity or adultery. Rather than endorsing any sin we need to honestly repent and not be led down the garden path by political expediency. If the Primate were honestly interested in justice he would order that all actions against orthodox parishes cease and that apostate bishops resign their positions.

The Rev. Daniel Graves says:

April 28, 2009 at 12:05 pm

I find it disheartening that in an exercise that is intended for the building up of the kingdom of God, we continue to see our bishops characterized in such derisive terms. The primate (and our other bishops) are not “so-called” bishops, they are bishops in the Church of God. Similarly, to toss around a term like apostasy is very unhelpful. The elevation of abusive language in these debates is not at all edifying. In my experience, our Primate has never been anything but gracious. His invitation into this discussion and his willingness to listen to all voices has been most gracious. I hope that we as Canadian Anglicans would reciprocate with a similar graciousness that would be characterized in the tone of our language.

Frank Wirrell, Abbotsford, B.C. says:

April 29, 2009 at 4:17 pm

I have noted the response of Fr. Dan Graves and would ask what he finds offensive in my remarks. Clearly the time has come to call a spade a spade. Bishops, clergy and laity that deny the authority of Scripture and attempt to make such authority subject to a majority vote are apostates – politely but mistakenly called liberals. The Primate might well be gracious under some circumstances but his lack of action to deal with apostasy cannot be and should not be overlooked. Certainly he has not been gracious to orthodox Anglicans. To be a true Anglican one must first be a Christian and when you have so-called bishops proclaiming that all religions lead to the same place, action is mandatory to have them repent or remove them from office.

You cannot build a church on sand but only on the Solid Rock. The Anglican Church of Canada is quickly losing its “right” to be called a church of God and needs to repent and turn back from the sin of political expediency.

One of the significant things about this exchange is the fact that the ACoC’s defender is basing his defence on the use of language, rather than truth. The redoubtable Frank is intent upon calling “a spade a spade” and this is what seems to upset Rev. Daniel.

After all, we are Canadian: what matters is being nice to each other, not the truth.

And to set the record straight, the primate, Fred Hiltz is not as gracious as Rev. Daniel would like us to believe: he is supporting dioceses that are suing the pants off people who disagree with them.

The Diocese of Niagara has a *new* dynamic, Fresh Expressions discussion board

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara — David @ 5:03 pm

It’s what we’ve all been waiting for; add your comments here.

Isabel redux

Filed under: Humour — David @ 2:24 pm

We are not amused:

Had she known, Windsor Castle’s most famous resident would not have been amused.

A couple were caught having sex on a grass bank outside the Queen’s residence yesterday – as hundreds of shocked tourists looked on in horror and amusement.

Apparently unable to control themselves, the drunken pair stripped naked and began having sex in front of the Castle’s Garter Tower in full view of a busy road and shops.

Amused Japanese tourists jostled for position as they filmed the couple.

Diocese of New Westminster: damage control in a time of disintegration

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David @ 12:35 pm

The diocese of New Westminster has recognised that things are falling apart; their strategic plan whimpers:

Our numbers are declining at an alarming rate, and we have fewer financial resources with which to do mission. Our relevance is called into question.

A surprisingly honest assessment; the diagnosis may be accurate, but how does the diocese plan on reversing the rot?

First, no more money for parishes that can’t support themselves:

The need for a comprehensive diocesan plan has become even more urgent, with the changed economic conditions of the past several months. No longer can parishes in crisis come to diocese standing committees and be assured they will get the financial aid they may need. The money just isn’t there.

One thing we’re asking of all parishes-even before they enter into a Ministry Assessment Process-is that they undertake an honest self-assessment to discern their best future for furthering God’s mission in the world.

Regionally, we see a need for parishes to plan and work together. We are exploring a variety of alternatives to present arrangements together.

The message to parishes: succeed, consolidate or close; don’t expect the diocese to carry you.

In its quest for “relevance”, the diocese proposes – more of the same:

More specifically, Archbishop Fred Hiltz, the Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, has said we should take our cue from the “Five Marks of Mission” that the whole Anglican Communion has worked out through years of study and prayer. The five marks are: to proclaim the Good News of God’s kingdom; to reach, baptize, and nurture new believers; to respond to human needs by loving service; to seek to transform unjust structure of society; and to strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life of the earth.

The only glimmer of hope in the “five marks of mission” is the first, proclaim the good news; the glimmer is quickly extinguished, though, once one realises that Hiltz has no idea what the Good News actually is.

The rest of the marks of mission are given to nurturing others in a nebulous and undefined belief, tilting at justice windmills with MDGs and spouting eco-gobbledygook.

Diocese of New Westminster: cheerio.

Muddled Obama messianic art

Filed under: Art,Christianity — David @ 8:41 am
Tags: ,

Obama does it all: tears the veil of the temple, stretches out his arms as if on a cross and wears a crown of thorns:

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On his 100th day in office, President Obama will be “crowned” in messianic imagery at New York City’s Union Square.

Artist Michael D’Antuono’s painting “The Truth” – featuring Obama with his arms outstretched and wearing a crown of thorns upon his head – will be unveiled on April 29 at the Square’s South Plaza.

Like others in the news who have depicted Obama in Christ-like imagery, D’Antuono insists he isn’t claiming the man is Messiah, but only inviting “individual interpretations.”

“‘The Truth,’ like beauty, is in the eyes of the beholder,” claims the exhibit’s press release.

Aside from the intrinsic absurdity of the painting, “The Truth”, the last sentence identifies Obama more with Pontius Pilate than the Messiah: one of the perils of a biblically illiterate artist attempting to paint Messianic pictures.

April 29, 2009

A homosexual priest appeals to Rowan Williams for justification

Filed under: Anglican,Anglican Angst — David @ 4:14 pm
Tags: ,

A homosexual Anglican priest and his catamite draw comfort from Rowan Williams:

Interview with Greg Lisby, Rector at Church of the Ascension, Cranston

Kiersten Marek: My first question is: I recently read this article in The Atlantic called “The Velvet Reformation,” about Bishop Rowan Williams and the question of whether the Anglican church can become open to gay marriage. The article referenced an essay by Rowan Williams called “The Body’s Grace” in which Williams talked about how intimate relationships are about experiencing grace and that this grace should be accepted as part of both gay and straight relationships. He wrote:

“Grace, for the Christian believer, is a transformation that depends in large part on knowing yourself to be seen in a certain way: as significant, as wanted.”

I wonder if you can comment on how this idea strikes you, both as a church leader and as a partner in a gay relationship.

Fr. Greg Lisby: To know you are significant and wanted -isn’t that what we all desire? In the lore of creation, found in the book of Genesis, God said it is good for a human to have a partner (it isn’t until the second creation story that it specifically says male and female). God desires for us to be in relationship with another. It is in relationship, whether intimate or not, that we can glimpse the reality of God’s presence. So, whether it is an opposite-sex or same-sex relationship, all possess the potential for manifesting God’s presence. When that presence is realized, acknowledged, then the sense of worth and vulnerability that opens us to God’s grace is made possible. This, I believe, is what Archbishop Williams is getting at.

The whole interview is worth reading, if only to reinforce why the Anglican Church in North America has become an international laughing stock. Of particular interest in the section above is the fact that, no matter what public face Rowan Williams puts on the crisis tearing his church apart, his private views on homosexuality are being used by gay priest activists to justify their behaviour.

Going hand in hand with this is the trivialising of the meaning of Christian grace. Rather than its true meaning of God’s unmerited favour, it has been turned into the nugatory, “to know you are significant and wanted”, and is used in this context as a justification for homosexual activity; a ghastly perversion of a central truth of the Gospel for no other reason than self-indulgent antinomianism.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Canada and Anglican Church of Canada are Not Merging. Really.

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David @ 12:23 pm

In addition to sharing office space, church buildings and a common culturally tinctured view of the Christian Gospel, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Canada and the Anglican Church of Canada are now also considering holding a joint Synod:

Joint synod with ELCIC considered for 2013

The Anglican Church of Canada’s management team met with National Bishop Susan Johnson of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada and her senior staff in March to discuss ways to deepen the full communion agreement between the two churches Their discussion included plans for a joint General Synod / National Convention to be held in Ottawa in 2013 and the possibility of sharing space for both national offices in the future.

“If full communion is really going to have some sense of visibility across the Canadian church, there have to be some pretty bold steps that we take together to help people realize that we are, in fact, churches in full communion,” said Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada.

Both Bishop Johnson and Archbishop Hiltz said that these discussions are not about merging the two churches. “We’re not talking about being one church in one office space. We’re talking about being two churches in one office space,” said Bishop Johnson.

Perhaps the declared intention of being two churches in one office space is a little ambitious: two left-liberal social clubs and no churches in one office space would be a more realistic goal.

Cuba, Fred Hiltz and the weather

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David @ 8:58 am

Theodore Dalrymple on why liberals are so cosy with Cuba:

Perhaps no tyranny in history has enjoyed such a good press, and for so long, as Cuba under the Castro boys. When it comes to Cuba, restrictions on freedom of opinion, thought and expression, which have been both severe and long-lasting, are suddenly deemed by liberals to be unimportant, of no fundamental significance in their assessment of the regime: though the Brooklyn Museum has only to be prevented from showing pictures of the Virgin Mary surrounded by blobs of elephant dung – without any private institution being prohibited from showing them – for the cry of ‘Intolerable censorship!’ to go up.

Why should the Cuban tyranny be given, even now, such an easy time in at least some sections of the press? It may sound frivolous, but I think it has something to do with the weather.

In a flash of typical Dalrymple insight, we now have the answer for why Fred Hiltz likes to travel to Cuba: it’s the weather.

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And all this time I assumed it was because Cuba is, for him, a home away from the ACoC home: a totalitarian, thuggish tyranny where freedom is vigorously suppressed by a crackpot dictator.

April 28, 2009

The Diocese of Niagara on spreading infectious disease

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara — David @ 6:29 pm

The Diocese of Niagara is intent on doing its bit for the eradication of swine flu. To this end, they have for some time forbidden intinction at the Eucharist:

However, he said, the practice of dipping the wafer, called intinction, may carry a higher risk since fingers are also often dipped into the wine. During the SARS outbreak in Canada, at least one diocese, the Diocese of Niagara (Ontario), banned intinction in its churches. The Anglican Church of Canada published on its website a research report on risks of infection and communion practices.

Of course, when it comes to the spreading of AIDS amongst homosexuals, the diocese is considerably less fastidious about who dips what into whom. This is because so many of its clergy are, themselves, enthusiasts of the practice.

Doing the Indaba in the Diocese of Toronto

In January 2009, Colin Johnson, bishop of Toronto decided to go ahead with same-sex blessings in some of the parishes in his diocese.

On the face of it, this seemed like an odd decision since the Toronto synod is coming up in May: why not wait for a decision on this from synod?

It seems that the May synod will be using the same contention-defusing technique that Rowan Williams pioneered at Lambeth: the Indaba group:

For the first time, synod will use the indaba process for its discussions. Indaba is a Zulu word meaning “one agenda meeting” or gathering for purposeful discussion. Groups of 35 to 40 people discuss a single issue. Everyone is given a chance to speak. There is an attempt to find a common mind or common story that everyone is able to tell when they leave.

Colin Johnson is not in the least ashamed of the fact that he has no intention of allowing a vote on the issue that is on everyone’s mind; he boasts:

My expectation for the May synod is that, except for a few formalities, there will be no motions. We’ll deal with legislative matters when synod meets again in November. This does not mean that the May synod will be insignificant!

So we’re not avoiding decisions at the May synod; rather, we’re expanding opportunities for people to participate in shaping the way we live together in the church.

True enough, Johnson is not avoiding decisions: they’ve already been made.

Melanie Phillips lays into Richard Dawkins

Filed under: Atheism — David @ 3:22 pm

Read it all Here:

The most famous atheist in the world, biologist Professor Richard Dawkins, poses as the arch-apostle of reason, a scientist who stands for empirical truth in opposition to obscurantism and lies. What follows suggests that in fact he is sloppy and cavalier with both facts and reasoning to a disturbing degree.

Dawkins seems to be more interested in his celebrity status than the truth; I really don’t think he can be in it just for the money, but a combination of cash, fame and glory appear to be what motivates him.

Richard Dawkins: the Elmer Gantry of atheists.

Richard Dawkins: the 4 commandments

Filed under: evolution — David @ 1:45 pm

In his book, “River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life” Richard Dawkins maintains:

“The universe we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference.”

This is an honest, bleak assessment of a universe without God. Dawkins does not manage to live down to his own belief system, however: in “The God Delusion“, in spite of the absence of good or evil, Dawkins maintains that atheists can be “moral”.

What does it mean to be “moral” in Richard Dawkins’ view? Here, we find the 4 commandments, written in naturally selected primeval  soup, fossilised  and handed personally to Richard by Darwin himself:

Richard Dawkins’s Commandments

1. Enjoy your own sex life (so long as it damages nobody else) and leave others to enjoy theirs in private whatever their inclinations, which are none of your business.

2. Do not discriminate or oppress on the basis of sex, race or (as far as possible) species.

3. Do not indoctrinate your children. Teach them how to think for themselves, how to evaluate science, and how to disagree with you.

4. Value the future of things on a timescale longer than your own.

It would be hard for any belief system to come up with a more bumper-sticker-worthy set of banalities.

April 27, 2009

Diocese of Niagara: building occupation 101

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara — David @ 10:03 am

Rev. Cheryl Fricker is the rector of St. Aidan’s Oakville; she has also been parachuted into St. Hilda’s as the “priest in charge” at the diocesan Potemkin St. Hilda’s.

At the building sharing hearing, the court gave the diocese access to St. Hilda’s building from 7:00 am – 10:00 am Sunday morning and for a 4 hour afternoon  and 3 hour evening period. The diocese, having no shame whatsoever, has appealed to people attending local parishes to come to their 8:30 a.m. Sunday service. They haven’t had much success. Orthodox Christians who remain in the diocesan parishes have expressed disgust at the diocesan attempts to create a bogus parish.

All this is being done to create the illusion that the diocese needs the building to accommodate the hoards of  people desperate to attend a diocesan service in the sparsely furnished, orange-carpeted, mould-smelling structure at 1258 Rebecca Street, Oakville.

The diocese is so confident  – or perhaps sloppy – that they are not even bothering to conceal the fact they are moving meetings from another parish to St. Hilda’s simply for the reason of occupying it. For example St. Aiden’s brazenly advertises that it has moved its bible study location:

Wednesday Bible Study

St. Aidan’s, Oakville

Our Wednesday Bible Study resumes looking at the resurrection appearances of Jesus in the four Gospels. All are welcome 1:30 to 3:00 at St. Hilda’s Anglican Church Oakville

Cost: no fee

April 29, 2009 – 1:30

There is little hope that anyone in the diocesan administration has enough moral fibre to protest, but, parishioners of St. Aidan’s, you do not need to be a party to the diocese’s contemptible games.

April 26, 2009

Christian teacher suspended over resisting homosexuality indoctrination

Filed under: homosexuality — David @ 4:35 pm

From here:

A senior teacher has been suspended from his £50,000-a-year job after he complained that a training day for staff was used to promote gay rights.

Kwabena Peat, 54, was one of several Christian staff who walked out of the compulsory session at a North London school after an invited speaker questioned why people thought heterosexuality was natural.

The presentation was given by Sue Sanders, a co-founder of the Schools Out organisation which campaigns for gay equality in education.

According to Mr Peat, Ms Sanders, herself a lesbian, said that staff who did not accept that being gay was normal had ‘issues’ they had to deal with.

She started promoting homosexual lifestyles and suggesting those who had objections should sort out their prejudices. She said, “What makes you all think that to be heterosexual is natural?” It was at that point I walked out.’

By saying “What makes you all think that to be heterosexual is natural” one assumes that Sue Sanders is not about to make the case for heterosexual sex being supernatural; the point she is attempting to make is that, in the view of equality commissars, a homosexual act is no more contrary to nature’s intent than a heterosexual one. Little argument is given for this: we have already moved beyond discussion to enforcement.

Why might homosexual activity not be nature’s norm? The reasons don’t seem to be beyond the reach of common sense:

First, the plumbing is wrong.

Second, for those who believe we are here through natural selection, the homosexual gene – if it exists – is a dead end gene that eventually should be selected out; hardly a case for normality. The fact that it has not been either means we haven’t given it enough time, or we are not here through natural selection.

Third, if there is no homosexual gene, gayness becomes a lifestyle choice; it has no more claim to normality than any other unusual lifestyle choices. Most lifestyle eccentrics are proud of their peculiarities: to canvas for recognition of normality for freely chosen foibles would be self-defeating. No self-respecting eccentric wishes to be reduced to hum-drum, mediocre normality.

Forth, to bring in religion, all major faiths maintain that God’s design is for heterosexual sex within marriage – I am excluding Western Anglicanism since it isn’t a major faith.

April 25, 2009

Michael Coren on the Diocese of Niagara

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara — David @ 10:10 pm

Michael Coren, on his Facebook Wall, gives a measured and nuanced response to this:

Incredible. These people represent the final spasms of a moribund liberal cult. They have only a few years left.

A generous assessment.

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