Anglican Samizdat

April 30, 2010

Another type of long-term committed relationship

Filed under: The fall of the West — David Jenkins @ 4:30 pm

From here:Add an Image

A grandmother has shocked her friends and family after revealing she is having a baby with her own grandson.

Pearl Carter, 72, says she has never been happier after beginning an incestuous relationship with her 26-year-old grandchild Phil Bailey.

The pensioner, from Indiana, US, is using her pension to pay a surrogate mother so they can have a child, reports New Zealand’s New Idea magazine.

She said: “I’m not interested in anyone else’s opinion. I am in love with Phil and he’s in love with me.

Anglican bishops announced that Episcopal permission is to be given to a limited number of parishes, based on Episcopal discernment, to offer prayers and blessing (but not the nuptial blessing) to grandmother-grandson couples in stable, long-term, committed relationships, as an extension of the current pastoral norms.


The Anglican Church of Canada tackles poverty

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David Jenkins @ 1:49 pm

By sponsoring a film in which people love paying taxes and business is the villain. The reason for this sponsorship is made no less recondite by the fact that the ACoC is running out of money and is appealing to business to sponsor its forthcoming synod.

The most memorable scene in Poor No More, a documentary that premiered this week in Toronto, takes place on the shop floor of a large truck manufacturer in Sweden.

A female employee, talking while she works, says it’s “okay to pay taxes because our system takes care of all the people.” She explains that if she became sick or had an accident, she would get 80 per cent of her wages. Like all Swedes, she is entitled to subsidized child care, elder care, high-quality health care and 10 days of parental leave a year.

A delegation of Canadian visitors — host Mary Welsh and two Canadian workers trapped in insecure, low-wage jobs — listens in disbelief.

The trio moves outside to a Stockholm street. “I love paying taxes,” a passerby affirms.

It seems as if the Canadians have stepped into fantasyland.

That is what the filmmakers intend. “If we can’t imagine a world without poverty, we probably can’t get there,” says executive producer David Langille.

The documentary, a three-year effort, is Langille’s first foray into the world of filmmaking. He is a part-time university professor with an extensive network of contacts in the social justice movement.

Fifty sponsors — from the Society of Energy Professionals to the Anglican Church of Canada — paid for the $550,000 film.

The goal of the documentary is to break the barriers that prevent Canadians from acting to eliminate poverty.

The first is a belief that only a small minority cares. The second is a belief that the cause is futile. The third is burnout. After 25 years of lobbying, organizing, demonstrating and preaching, the poverty rate has barely changed.

This time, Langille and his colleagues want to send a message of hope: Poverty can be beaten, without bankrupting the national treasury or reducing the country’s standard of living.

The documentary is polished, interesting and well-paced. But it is one-sided. Every commentator in it — professors, authors, union leaders and heads of think-tanks — blames big business and its friends in government for turning Canada into a land of poverty amidst plenty.

April 29, 2010

Anglican Church of Canada busy ridding the world of nuclear weapons

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David Jenkins @ 3:41 pm

Having failed to find the money needed to run its own synod, the ACoC has decided to tackle something easier:

Subject: Toward a World Free of Nuclear Weapons

Moved by: The Rev. Canon Dr. William E. Prentice, Diocese of Ottawa

Seconded by: The Rev. Dr. Linda Privitera, Diocese of Ottawa

Be it resolved that this General Synod:

Expresses its support for a world free of nuclear weapons, and asks the General Secretary to convey our position to the Government of Canada, requesting:

  1. from the Government information about Canadian activities to support nuclear disarmament, and
  2. from the Prime Minister a public affirmation of Canada’s commitment to a world free of nuclear weapons.

Many are rejoicing as the ACoC does its bit to disarm the West:

The Anglican Church of Canada does health and wealth

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David Jenkins @ 10:47 am

Its own health and wealth, that is; it now has a Theology of Philanthropy:

The new way: a theology of philanthropy
While we admit that putting a stop to this is not an easy task, and certainly not something we can do alone, the Department of Philanthropy is working diligently with dioceses, parishes and our partners within the national church to help the church unearth a theology of philanthropy—a theology that is mission-driven and that inspires Canadian Anglicans to give gladly as a faithful expression of their Christian vocation.

If the Biblical injunction to tithe hasn’t persuaded Anglicans to fork over their cash, there’s going have to be a lot of digging before the ACoC unearth(s) a theology of philanthropy that will. Oh, sorry, I forgot: to take tithing seriously requires a literalistic reading of Scripture.

April 28, 2010

Grovelling for England

Filed under: Politics — David Jenkins @ 4:20 pm
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And no-one does it better than Gordon Brown:

Gordon Brown issued a personal apology to a British widow and later said sorry to the entire Labor Party after branding her a bigot on the campaign trail.

The prime minister spent 45 minutes at Gillian Duffy’s terraced home to apologize for unguarded comments caught on a radio microphone that he had forgotten to remove.

Brown was accosted by the 66-year-old after stopping to talk to the voters in the suburbs of Rochdale and was attacked on subjects including welfare payments, student tuition fees and the national debt.

But it was Mrs Duffy’s complaint about immigration from Eastern Europe which prompted Mr Brown to criticise her as he got back into his car and blamed a staff member for not preventing the meeting. “She’s just a bigoted woman,” he told aides in his official car, unaware that his microphone was still live.

British politics is awash with politically correct conservative wimps, socialist dhimmis and money grubbing liberal democrats. Since the British voter has been deprived of any party worth voting for, it’s generous of Gordon Brown to provide the respite of comedic relief; at least the election won’t be a complete loss.

An abortion horror story

Filed under: Abortion — David Jenkins @ 2:34 pm

From the Telegraph:

A baby boy abandoned by doctors to die after a botched abortion was found alive nearly two days later.

The 22-week infant later died in intensive care at a hospital in the mother’s home town of Rossano in southern Italy.

The mother, pregnant for the first time, had opted for an abortion after prenatal scans suggested that her baby was disabled.

However the infant survived the procedure, carried out on Saturday in the Rossano Calabria hospital, and was left by doctors to die.

He was discovered alive the following day – some 20 hours after the operation – by Father Antonio Martello, the hospital chaplain, who had gone to pray beside his body.

He found that the baby, wrapped in a sheet with his umbilical cord still attached, was moving and breathing.

The priest raised the alarm and doctors immediately arranged for the infant to be taken to a specialist neonatal unit at a neighbouring hospital where he died on Monday morning.

Italian police are investigating the case for “homicide” because infanticide is illegal in Italy.

The law means that doctors have had an obligation to try to preserve the life of the child once he had survived the abortion.

The Italian government is also considering an inquiry into the conduct of the hospital staff.

The case has reignited controversy on the legality of abortion in the proudly Roman Catholic country.

To kill a baby in the womb is legal; if the baby defies the first attempt to kill it, killing it through neglect once it is outside the womb is homicide.

The law is as profoundly stupid as man is corrupt.

The Anglican Church of Canada is dafter than Richard Dawkins

Filed under: Anglican Church of Canada — David Jenkins @ 1:31 pm
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Here is the Anglican Church of Canada’s answer to the anti-theists: Jesus was the equivalent of  an evolutionary misfit; far from God being infinite, he’s not even big; let’s try pantheism and worship the cosmos for a change.

That should appeal to Dawkins and Hitchens; I am expecting an imminent conversion.

[T]he bigger we try to make God, the more silly such a God sounds. If we want people to take God seriously, they are telling us, forget the idea of God as a very big person out there.

Like Charles Darwin, author of Origin of the Species, Dawkins is telling us that new kinds of animals are created when large numbers of normal animals die off. Misfits suddenly fit well and become the ancestors of a new normal. If life has arisen on other planets or anywhere in the universe, that process of death leading to new forms of life will be the way it happens.

But that sounds strangely like Christ. He was a misfit who insisted on fairness and dignity for all, including women, the diseased and social outcasts of all kinds. That sort of equality would never fit into the violent hierarchy of human empires, yet through his death, Christ became the ancestor of a whole new kind of human–the community founded in God’s kingdom of justice, the community that is a follower of The Way.

Rather than asking people to imagine a great Being in the sky, maybe we should be focusing on faith in Christ as a way to grasp the deepest mystery of life. What if our worship spoke to the realities of the cosmos, of life, that skeptics already know to be true?

Then, would our worship elicit hysterics or awe?

I don’t know about you, but I’m beginning to feel the onset of a bout of hysterics; hysterical laughter, that is.

Looking for meaning over the dinner table

Filed under: Humour — David Jenkins @ 9:54 am

April 27, 2010

World Vision and abortion

Filed under: World Vision — David Jenkins @ 12:00 pm
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The Conservative government has taken a stand against abortion which appears to upset World Vision:

HALIFAX — The political debate about whether Ottawa should fund safe abortion services overseas is a distraction, and should not be allowed to derail a new Canadian-led campaign to save the lives of new mothers and children the world’s poorest countries, says World Vision Canada.

World Vision is one of a handful of independent relief agencies, working in the developing world, that convinced Prime Minister Stephen Harper in January to make maternal and child health care in Africa and Asia one of his new international priorities.

Harper’s International Co-operation Minister Bev Oda, is in Halifax today hosting a meeting of her counterparts from the G8 nations, to try to hammer out a consensus on funding a new maternal health initiative.

The initiative has become a political hot potato in Canada, however, because of long-standing disagreements over abortion. Oda announced on Monday that any new Canadian efforts to improve maternal health care in poor countries would not include abortion services.

No matter, says World Vision. There are bigger issues at stake.

“The debate is ongoing in Canada. We’re not going to solve it. But we’re not prepared to see this initiative derailed while we’re trying to sort out the ideologies around this,” says Caroline Riseboro, World Vision Canada’s vice-president of public affairs.

Why is World Vision Canada not applauding the government’s opposition to killing the unborn? I really do hope that it’s not because World Vision surreptitiously condones abortion – particularly as I have supported them for many years.

April 26, 2010

Richard Dawkins explains how the gay gene was preserved

Filed under: homosexuality,Richard Dawkins — David Jenkins @ 7:00 pm
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Richard Dawkins, in keeping with the contemporary liberal credendum, assumes that there must be a gay gene. In this brief video he struggles valiantly to explain why the gay gene was not selected out of his Darwinian universe; it should have been, since homosexuals would not have reproduced.

His suggested answers are below and appear to have been extracted from the Beano Comic Book of Weird Science:

  1. The gay uncle theory: a prehistoric gay equivalent of the eunuch who looks after the females and their offspring while the butch males are out hunting. They passed on gay genes to the children by protecting their relatives’ children who would have carried the gay gene, demonstrating – albeit tenuously -the Darwinian advantage of the protective gay uncle for cavemen; it doesn’t explain the last 6000 years.
  2. The gay gene was passed on by homosexuals who had sex with the dominant males’ females on the side; homosexuality was used merely as a cunning ploy to steal other men’s’ women.
  3. The gay gene only produces homosexual behaviour given the right social stimulation – such as today. Dawkins almost slips into blasphemy on this one by saying there is no gay gene; he quickly recovers by sputtering that there is a gay gene now even if it once used to be an animal tracking gene which wasn’t allowed to express itself properly. Of course, this leaves the original problem: once the gay gene expresses itself in gay behaviour, homosexuals would be selected out – they don’t seem to have been.

So there you have it: the great high priest of Darwinian Dogma has spoken; all nonsense perhaps, but atheists, please genuflect.

The world’s biggest telescope

Filed under: Anglican,Science — David Jenkins @ 6:03 pm

Is being built in Chile.Add an Image

When it is finished, Bishop Michael Bird plans to rent it for the weekend, to scour the universe for a same-sex couple to marry.

The observatory will be constructed on Cerro Armazones, a 3,000m-high mountain in Chile’s Atacama Desert.

The E-ELT (European Extremely Large Telescope) will have a primary mirror 42m in diameter – about five times the width of today’s best telescopes.

Astronomers say the next-generation observatory will be so powerful it will be able to image directly rocky planets beyond our Solar System.

It should also be able to provide major insights into the nature of black holes, galaxy formation, the mysterious “dark matter” that pervades the Universe, and the even more mysterious “dark energy” which appears to be pushing the cosmos apart at an accelerating rate.

Selected heresies from the Diocese of Niagara

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara — David Jenkins @ 2:27 pm
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Plucked fresh from the May Niagara Anglican:

Jesus is not God:

St. George’s, Guelph, is a free thinking church, where dissent from the faith is permitted, if not encouraged. Everything is open to debate, including the divinity of Christ and the Trinity.

Man is not sinful:

Reservations of St. Augustine’s theology, especially that part which described “humankind as a mass of corruption and sin, or looked upon the world as irredeemably evil.”

The Good News is temporal and unrelated to Jesus atoning for our sins, salvation or eternal life:

“To proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom”…. The Marks of Mission invite the church to begin our ministry where Jesus began his, with proclamation that another way—the kingdom of heaven, the reign of God, a New Creation—has become an available choice within history, and not just a hope for the eternal future.

Jesus is not unique; all religions lead to the same place:

Who’s in charge? No one person or religion, and that’s fine. Let’s work with other religions as a global force doing God’s work and let’s allow our traditional rivalries to die away……

Recently a cartoon was printed of a wall dividing a dry desert from a luscious garden with every fruit tree imaginable in it. In the wall were two gateways; one with “Right Religion” over it, the other with “Wrong Religion.” Everyone, of all races and tribes were clamoring to enter the one marked “Right Religion,” but no one the one labeled “Wrong Religion.” Above were God and some angels. The caption read, “It’s too bad that they just don’t get it.”

Jesus was a heretic and but a caricature of God:

But we do see Jesus, the greatest heretic of all time, but the truest manifestation, or caricature, of God we’ve got, or will ever get.

Faith is shaped not by objective truth, but by experience:

There’s no part of the faith that’s so sacrosanct that it cannot, or should not, be questioned, pulled apart, and put back together again. Faith is not like the multiplication tables. We may question whether six times seven is the same as seven times six, which equals forty two; but it won’t change, no matter how we look at it.

The Diocese of Niagara has something to be proud of

Filed under: Diocese of Niagara,Nothing in Particular — David Jenkins @ 1:13 pm

The Anglican Church of Canada is shrinking faster than a haemorrhoid in an argon laser. Consequently, the dioceses of B. C., Toronto, Rupert’s Land, Ottawa, Ontario and Huron (and Montreal) are “restructuring” in order to survive with fewer people. This, of course, is a euphemism for closing parishes.

I just received an email from a friend in the Diocese of Rupert’s Land who was very excited by the fact that a committee of the Synod will be looking at the vitality and viability of all the parishes in the diocese. This follows on the news of the completed Diocese of B. C. study that called for the closure of some parishes and restructuring of others. The Diocese of Toronto has a strategic plan in the making, Ottawa, Ontario and Huron as well as others I may not know about.

The Diocese of Niagara, however, during the diabolarchy of its last three bishops, has been clever enough to anticipate fleeing parishioners and has been closing churches in advance. Bravo the Diocese of Niagara!

This is simply to illustrate that in light of declining membership and resources in many dioceses the leadership is taking a hard look at the future, most have decided to create a “grand plan”. We in Niagara have taken a slightly different approach and under the leadership of the Bishops Asbil, Spence and Bird and the support of Synod Councils over the years, we have been closing and amalgamating parishes at a pace that makes us the Canadian leaders in restructuring for mission in a changing context.

This technique has been so successful, it is to be exported:

Our Synod has been so successful in our approaches to these issues that the writer and other members of the Mission Strategy Committee have been asked to present our methods to other Diocesan leaders across Canada and the United States.

The whole thing is based on relationship and trust:

This respect leads to relationship which leads to trust and finally a mutual understanding of what the next steps in ministry may need to be.

And doing things the Niagara Way:

What is more it all seems to be very much our “Niagara Way”.

April 25, 2010

You can’t advertise God’s love here

Filed under: St. Hilda's — David Jenkins @ 7:21 pm
Tags: ,

St. Hilda’s Anglican Church in Oakville has a yearly garage sale; it’s not a normal garage sale, though, because no money is collected for the items. The message to the Oakville community is that, just as the items are free, so is God’s love for us and so is the gift of eternal life through faith in Jesus Christ.

There is a Yahoo Group called oakvillefreecycle where used articles are exchanged free of charge; we thought it would be a good idea to advertise St. Hilda’s free garage sale there. Here is the post as it was originally written (you have to join the group to see it):

Free Market
Join us for our “Free Market”

An expression of God’s free gift to us.

Many items , books, toys, clothes, household items all free!

St. Hilda’s ANIC Church
1258 Rebecca Street
Oakville On.

Sat. May 15, 2010

9:00 a.m. -12:00 p.m.

The moderator of the group removed the line that I have in bold (it was not bold in the original post). No explanation, apology or reason; just commonplace secular illiberality.

Pope will make historic apology for abuse

Filed under: Roman Catholic child abuse — David Jenkins @ 7:07 pm

From The Independent, which in its subheading, is painting the Pope’s proposed apology as an attempt to defuse the scandal. It seems to me more likely, that this is a genuine act of repentance by the Pope of behalf of his Church; in light of their recent buffoonery, manic secularists will probably remain unappeased.

Vatican hopes unprecedented act of penance at June jamboree will defuse anger over worldwide claims.

Pope Benedict XVI is planning to make the first general apology for the abuse of children and minors by Roman Catholic priests when he meets thousands of clergymen from around the world in June at the climax of the International Year for Priests, Vatican sources say.

In the past there have been papal or church apologies for individual cases of paedophilia or for abuse in specific countries, for example during the German pontiff’s recent visit to Malta. What is being prepared now would be the first time a pope seeks to atone publicly for the extent to which paedophilia has been a major stain on the modern history of the church touching a constellation of countries, say the sources at the Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy. It could be considered comparable to the historic step that the previous pope, John Paul II, took in apologising to the Jews for historic church anti-Semitism and for misdeeds during the Crusades, they say.

Vatican officials hope such an unprecedented act of penance by Benedict, together with thousands of clergymen in St Peter’s Square, 9-11 June, will do much to lay to rest the scandal and defuse protests that might disrupt his trip to Britain in September. The encounter will form the climax of the special year of events designed in part to encourage vocations to the cloth but which instead has been marred by the mushrooming paedophile scandal.

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