Thinking Anglicans

American Questionnaire

The members of the US House of Bishops have each been sent a questionnaire. Absolutely everything that is known about this questionnaire can be seen in the photo scans of the document that I have uploaded:

Cover
First page
Second page
(you might need to click on each picture to get it full-size and easily legible, depending on what browser you use)

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Tim JonesSimon SarmientoGöran Koch-SwahneUrielAndrew Carey Recent comment authors
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Garth Walsh
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Garth Walsh

This is a new low! Lord Carey has sunk to depths of meddling I thought not even he would go– but he has surprised me before.

J. C. Fisher
Guest

Oh, puh-leez. Anybody wanna tell “Rt. Hon. +Rt.Rev Lord Carey of Clifton” to stay on *his* side of the Pond, and quit mucking around in TEC? [And *as if* Lord Carey defines who is/isn’t staying “faithful to Orthodox Christianity”?]

I have to say, the creators of this “survey” have a lot of chutzpah, to cite “deep collegiality among the Bishops”, even as they set out to undermine it! >:-(

Tim Stewart
Guest
Tim Stewart

I sense the fine Italianate hand of the IRD, with Lord Carey in its pocket.
(how’s that for mixing metaphors?)
🙂

Dave
Guest
Dave

I don’t think that liberals in ECUSA need to be worried that their HoB could make a sudden about face. Regretably, they haven’t listened to the rest of the communion’s bishops, the primates, the ACC or even the current, liberal, ABofC. I think there is zero chance that they will reconsider their positions because of one church’s survey.

Counterlight
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Counterlight

One small mercy of living in the United States is that we don’t have to put up with titled nitwits. We only have to put up with privileged oligarchs congratulating themselves on their egalitarian sentiments as they ride to the bank in their limos to deposit their dividend checks. Our elected bishops are accountable first to God and second to the pewsitters in our church. The people in the Episcopal Church are as sharply divided in their views as is the rest of the United States right now. However, a majority consensus seems to be emerging out there in the… Read more »

Kurt
Guest
Kurt

The man should mind his own business!

D. C.
Guest

The questionnaire seems straightforward. I didn’t see any obnoxious questions or stealthily biased phrasing. I see no harm in gathering data about how the bishops feel now. Getting +Carey’s endorsement was a smart marketing move to legitimize the questionnaire; otherwise, many bishops’ secretaries likely would have tossed it in the recycling bin.

I was and am a strong supporter of +VGR’s consecration and of local option for same-sex blessings. I don’t understand why the above commenters are so upset.

Rev. Kurt Huber
Guest
Rev. Kurt Huber

What a strange questionaire. The purpose is to bring about reconciliation? I doubt that very much. The purpose is to stand up and say GC2003 was a mistake. It will not happen.

I doubt the HoB will respond and its supposedly blind results will be useless.

Rev. Lois Keen
Guest
Rev. Lois Keen

I think we are “upset” because we no longer trust one another’s motives. I am concerned because, knowing George Carey’s view on the ratification of Gene Robinson’s election, results from the questionnaire under his imprimatur might be used as fuel for a fire, one way or another. Leaving my own paranoia aside, however, the timing, so soon before General Convention 2006, is suspect. (Well, I guess I’m not really leaving my paranoia aside!) I would want to know how this information, once gathered, is intended to be used. I also am ashamed to say that I do not trust whoever… Read more »

Tobias S Haller BSG
Guest

The most serious problem with this survey is that it is being sent to the entire House of Bishops. It is a common misunderstanding to think that the House of Bishops voted on the consent to the election of Bishop Robinson. They did not. According to our canons, only bishops with jurisdiction are eligible to consent to elections. This is done, apart from meetings of the General Convention, by sending a ballot to each diocesan bishop, which he or she is then free to return (as consent) or simply disregard. An absolute majority of “consents” is required for confirmation; so… Read more »

Tobias S Haller BSG
Guest

Another observation:
In addition to the fact that the first question appears not to reflect a clear understanding of how the Bishops with jurisdiction give consent, on closer reading, I’m intrigued by the use of the word “measure” in this survey. This is, for us Americans, a “Britishism.” We would use the word “resolution.” This leads me to surmise that the author of this survey may not be a native-born speaker of American English.
I wonder who that might be?

J. C. Fisher
Guest

D.C., *if* there were value in doing an anonymous questionnaire, it would be done as academic questionnaire is done: w/ the surveyors very explicitly NOT anonymous (telling us that they are not aligned w/ any particular organization(s) is useless, without the surveyors’ names attached). How much better if ALL the organizations named had gone in on such a questionnaire—again, *IF* one were necessary (I’m not sure why it would be)—together? As others have said: it’s the *framing* of the survey by Lord Carey (titled nitwit? Counterlight said it! ;-p)—whose opinions are well-known—in terms of “Orthodox Christianity” which turns this questionnaire… Read more »

D. C.
Guest

JCF, apropos of your titled-nitwit remark, let me respectfully invite your attention to my post of a few days ago, “Why Are So Many Trads So Hostile?” at http://www.questioningchristian.com/2006/03/why_are_so_many.html, and to the Rules of Engagement cited at the end at http://www.questioningchristian.com/2005/01/rules_of_engage.html.

J. C. Fisher
Guest

I was just quoting, D.C.

While I don’t consider people to be “nitwits”, frankly, I think the UK titling *system* is a little bit nutty (especially when it mixes up the World and the Church). But hey, it’s their side of the Pond—and as long as those who have titles, don’t try to use them to interfere over *here*, then live and let live, I say! 😉

Marshall Scott
Guest

I have some suspicion that Archbishop Carey (Lord Carey of Clifton, I believe, because he was honored as a Life Peer when he ended his tenure as Archbishop of Canterbury) wasn’t properly informed as to what he was endorsing. In any case, his name on this is an advertisement. It is certainly not his work.

And it seems poor quality work at best. I agree that this is in poor form. Any reputable group would acknowledge responsibility.

Jim McNeely+
Guest
Jim McNeely+

Hell hath no fury like a liberal held accountable for their choices.

Susan Woodleigh
Guest
Susan Woodleigh

Why does this questionnaire make so many of you commenters nervous?

Edward the Confessor
Guest
Edward the Confessor

You may throw fits and get riled up about a survey and Lord Carey’s relationship to it or the ECUSA. It really doesn’t matter does it? GC2006 is coming and the sandbox will be yours to play in – all alone. Enjoy! But, you can not have your cake and it too. You will not be in the A.C. That’s the reality with which, when all is said and done, you will have to live. The traditionalists have hung on because they love their tradition and buildings. The liberals, however, value their relationship with the AC. The traditionalists will lose… Read more »

Ted the Plumber
Guest
Ted the Plumber

Aw come on gang. You Lib’s are just pissed off because orthodox Anglicans have finally taken a play from your own handbook. If I were a Lib I’d be terrified of this survey b/c it undermines the effectiveness of threated retaliation that has been used by the revisionists for decades.

I'd rather not say
Guest

Some of us find the attacks on Lord Carey as a “conservative” or a “reasserter” or “orthodox” more than a little amusing, since it was the same Lord Carey who ushered in the “ordination” of women in the C of E, a disaster there as it has been here.

Just depends on whose ox is gored, I suppose . . .

Dumb Ox
Guest
Dumb Ox

“It is long past time for Lord Carey to make a graceful retirement from public involvement in sensitive church disagreements. I do not envy Archbishop Williams his predecessor.” “Anybody wanna tell “Rt. Hon. +Rt.Rev Lord Carey of Clifton” to stay on *his* side of the Pond, and quit mucking around in TEC? “ A little like Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton commenting negatively on President Bush!!! I do agree with Lois+ that there is ‘no such thing as a neutral action.” ++Carey is perfectly entitled to comment/ work for the orthodox/reasserter position. After all, it seems to be perfectly okay… Read more »

Scott+
Guest
Scott+

I do not see the problem here. I think that many are afraid that the results of the poll will be considerably different from the vote of the last General Convention. It is an American thing to take polls on all sort of subjects. All sides of political debates take polls.

will gates
Guest
will gates

It will be interesting to read the results. Even more interesting to see how they stack up against how the HOB votes in June. Dear Archbishop Carey, how would you have done in an election?

Don Armstrong
Guest
Don Armstrong

As the former leader of the worldwide Anglican Communion, Lord Carey began many significant intiatives that he continues to endorse and work on in his ‘retirement.’ He is a vital and healthly man who is extending the authority and influence that was his as the ABC to continue efforts for peace in the Middle East, Iraq, East Africa, not to mention his efforts in Muslim-Christian. His ministry of caring for those with absolutely no influence and his ability to bring significant people together for the common good is stunning. To involve himself in saving the Communion that is his basis… Read more »

Matt Kennedy+
Guest

++Carey is actually serving in an ECUSA parish. He’s not meddling.

Anna
Guest

Don, I do know what Lord Carey is doing worldwide and it is indeed laudable. His work is not my concern. It’s the statements he makes and the confusion they often cause when the former Archbishop of Canterbury and the Archbishop of Canterbury are seen to be on different sides. Lord Carey absolutely should continue his excellent initiatives, but “extending the authority and influence that was his as the ABC” is only appropriate in certain contexts. He used to speak for the Anglican Communion. He now speaks for himself. Not everyone is aware of the distinction and great difficulty can… Read more »

Andrew Carey
Guest
Andrew Carey

Anna, There are very few examples you would be able to cite of the former Archbishop and ++Rowan being on different sides. This questionnaire is not one of them. It looks to me to be a rather neutral project which probably won’t come off, but actually could be advantageous to either side in ECUSA. The difficulty, my father, and Lord Runcie before him, and I daresay ++Rowan will in time face, is how to continue a ministry, which most of the time will be low profile consisting of unsung work, and how to avoid treading on the toes of your… Read more »

Anna
Guest

Andrew, it’s not always a matter of your father and Archbishop Williams actually being on different sides. It’s more about perception. It is, as I said, absolutely appropriate and laudable for Lord Carey to continue his commitments. As a great deal of his work is not low profile and is highly sung (and I do not mean to imply that he seeks out such attention, simply that it comes given the circles in which he moves), it becomes more difficult to manage perceptions around your father’s new place in the Anglican Communion and that of Archbishop Williams.

Merseymike
Guest
Merseymike

“his record in any case speaks for itself”

Indeed. Disastrous.

Lisa
Guest
Lisa

A couple of you asked why we liberals are distressed about this survey? My reason is very simple. The authors/sponsors of this survey remain anonymous, hidden. Which mean they are already engaged in deceit. Therefore, I strongly suspect they have already written their report, and it will serve whatever purposes they have. Not only will they discard the mailing envelopes; it wouldn’t surprise me if they don’t even open the envelopes.

Andrew Carey
Guest
Andrew Carey

Lisa, to have such low suspicions of fellow Christians says something about the dreadful state of relationships in the Episcopal Church. In any case, I don’t think this is an anyonymous survey – it contains a letterhead with an address. It may have been a mistake not to put names on it, but this is hardly different from the practice of many organisations in not putting personal names on surveys. My understanding is that the authors of the survey would not be known to members of the House of Bishops but there is no secrecy about LEAC itself which is… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

Andrew

I never heard of James Ince until this moment. Nor had I ever heard of LEAC until this Questionnaire appeared. Where can I find out more?

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

it contains a letterhead with an address??????

Uriel
Guest
Uriel

Perhaps someone will explain to me why any bishop would bother with this questionnaire? I’m sure they receive all sorts of things in the mail. This comes from a group who, as far as I can tell, has no particular standing. I’m sure if I were a bishop, I would simply toss it. Or..?

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Experience seems to be that clergy generally don’t answer questionaires ;=)

Which makes this thing all the more remarkable…

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

James Ince is mentioned in this report from TLC
http://www.livingchurch.org/publishertlc/viewarticle.asp?ID=1751

Tim Jones
Guest
Tim Jones

“Experience seems to be that clergy generally don’t answer questionaires ;=)”

Of all the things to with my time (other than browse blogs on a Friday afternoon when devoid of energy or desire actually to write Sunday’s sermon), answering other people’s questionnaires comes well down the list, just above advertisements for Viagra or bright little pencil sharpeners with “Stay Sharp for Jesus” printed on them.