04 December 2008

Ecclesiastical Lies

The Episcopal Church is coming apart at the seams. It has been doing this for about 10 years now, but today it is official.

Not because an alternative province has been declared.

Because the New Orc Times says it is so.

Two quotes in the article make me crazy, however. The first is this one:

The Rev. Charles Robertson, canon for the Episcopal Church’s presiding bishop, Katharine Jefferts Schori, said Wednesday, “There is room within the Episcopal Church for people of different views, and we regret that some have felt the need to depart from the diversity of our common life in Christ.”
A simple look at David Virtue's site where he has been revealing the inner workings of The Episcopal Church (TEC, what they used to call the Episcopal Church USA or ECUSA) to the world will reveal that this is patently a lie. There is no room for orthodox, conservative priests. At Virtue's site you can search the archive to find a long list of priests who have been inhibited (a church court term that amounts to and indictment and house arrest) solely because they spoke out against what Virtue calls "the pansexual agenda." Once again, the "progressives" are tolerant of anyone except those who disagree with them.

The more maddening quote is this:

Jim Naughton, canon for communications and advancement in the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, and a liberal who frequently blogs on Anglican affairs, said he doubted that a rival Anglican province could grow much larger. “I think this organization does not have much of a future because there are already a lot of churches in the United States for people who don’t want to worship with gays and lesbians,” he said. “That’s not a market niche that is underserved.”

This jerk makes several key errors, which do much to explain the state of spiritual malaise in TEC.

  • He reduces the issue Scriptural Authority question of whether someone "want[s] to worship with gays and lesbians." To the progressives, it is all about hospitality and being nice.
  • He implicitly rejects the notion that this could possibly be Spirit led; it is about a "market niche."
  • He assumes that there is no future for the organization because he disagrees with it. The Pharisee Gamaliel had more respect for those who disagreed with than this.
The actual extent of the split in global Anglicanism has much to do with the reaction of the British church, and specifically the Archbishop of Canterbury. It has been reported that Archbishop Williams leaned toward the progressive side of things when he was Primate of Wales. Reports seem to indicate that the Church of England is divided on issues of the pansexual agenda. There are two ways he can go:

  1. If Williams sides with the traditionalists and recognizes the new province in North America, then there will be some who will leave the Church of England and form an alternate organization which will attempt to ally with TEC. The bulk of the Anglican Communion will remain intact.
  2. If Williams decides to stay in communion with TEC, or if he just does nothing and hope this goes away, the Third World archbishops and primates will recognize the new church and abandon Canterbury. So what, you ask? Well, for example, there are more Anglicans in Nigeria than in all of Europe and the United States combined. The center of gravity of global Anglicanism has shifted to the south. And one more thing, if the Church of England goes pansexual, Islam will experience an even greater explosion of growth in the UK.

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