Thinking Anglicans

Richard Turnbull speaks to Reform

The Principal of Wycliffe Hall, Richard Turnbull spoke to the Reform Conference last year. You can hear and watch his remarks by following this video link. You may find them interesting.

Update: another copy of it is now here.

Update
Stephen Bates of the Guardian has a report on this: Theologian damns most Britons to hell.

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Tim
Guest

Indeed interesting. I watched approximately the first half and made these notes: He’s worried about “identity as evangelicals”; He’s into “supreme authority of scripture for all matters of life and faith”; He’s into “substitutionary atonement” and “need for a personal relationship with a personal God” and `a commitment to bringing the Gospel to those who do not know Jesus’ as being “defining marks” of being an evangelical; He thinks 95% the country are “facing hell unless the message of the Gospel is brought to bear”. More pertinently, he cautions strongly against a catholic understanding of the church, linking this in… Read more »

Justin Lewis-Anthony
Guest
Justin Lewis-Anthony

He doesn’t half fancy himself, doesn’t he? (“2+4 evangelical colleges” and so on)

Merseymike
Guest
Merseymike

It really does show very clearly how important it is that the church splits and that conservative evangelicals are shown the way to Nigeria.

Their ideas must always be challenged and it is simply not possible to be in communion with them.

mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
Guest
mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)

guys. guys, it’s another nasty liberal plot, concocted by Giles Fraser and Stephen Bates: Years ago, in a secret ceremony held in the staff canteen at the Guardian, Turnbull agreed to act as a ‘sleeper’ within the ConsEv movement, to be wheeled out as instant embarrassment as soon as the liberal ascendancy was threatened. By re-establishing the connection between ‘evangelical’ and ‘nasty party’ he denies the evangelical faith the rehabilitation it has so long been seeking in the public mind.

Mark Bennet
Guest
Mark Bennet

It would be interesting to hear more about a constructive ecclesiology – and how the Anglican embracing of ‘the historic episcopate’ affirmed in the Chicago-Lambeth quadrilateral takes its place within the strand of thinking represented in this piece. (The Quadrilateral also includes the scriptures – which got a mention, and sacraments of Baptism and Holy Communion, and the Nicene and Apostles Creeds – which did not). Ecclesiology is very important just now, and given the comments on misreading history it would also be pertinent to hear about how Richard Turnbull reads the ecclesiology of the Elizabethan Settlement. Does this, in… Read more »

Hugh of Lincoln
Guest
Hugh of Lincoln

He made some salient points about the state of the C of E’s finances. But then he’s an accountant, so he knows his stuff.

I wondered how he’d calculated that 95% of the UK population are going to hell. Perhaps he’s God’s statistician too.

Martin Reynolds
Guest

LOL! David …… I enjoyed that!

John-Julian, OJN
Guest
John-Julian, OJN

I’m only a stupid Yank, but I listened carefully for the slightest shred of recognizable Anglicanism or of serious intellectual vigor, and I heard neither.

I realized the what I heard could quite easily be an address to a gathering of rather poorly-educated Southern Baptist ministers.

Is there any intellectual vigor at all in the Evangelical Movement in UK? Or any ecclesiology which could even in a stretch be identified as Anglican?

Pluralist
Guest

The language isinteresting because he starts with a motive, of being strategic, which he immediately shifts to “the liberals” – thus acknowledging the moral dubiousness of the motive by saying others do it when he has already stated he is doing it. Furthermore, he is keen to define evangelical against the Open Evangelicals. The whole tone, then, is about grabbing and manipulating students. They are in there for exploitation, for a greater outcome. Nothing about developing minds or seeing new insights, but units for altering. It is exactly equivalent to Militant Tendcency entryism, because it is about the clarity of… Read more »

Graham Kings
Guest

John-Julian, you ask ‘Is there any intellectual vigor at all in the Evangelical Movement in UK? Or any ecclesiology which could even in a stretch be identified as Anglican?’

It may be worth having a read of Oliver O’Donovan’s seven ‘web sermons’ on Fulcrum:
http://www.fulcrum-anglican.org.uk/page.cfm?ID=130
and Tom Wright’s address to General Synod about The Windsor Report:
http://www.fulcrum-anglican.org.uk/page.cfm?ID=115
The General Subject index page is:
http://www.fulcrum-anglican.org.uk/page.cfm?ID=158

Tim Jones
Guest
Tim Jones

Stephen Bates writes of Turnbull “damning 95% of Britons to hell”. But in the speech, it is clear that Turnbull’s concern actually is to SAVE 95% of people. We may disagree with his theological assumptions, and the ecclesiastical politicking, but let’s recognize at least that his motivation is to save, not to damn. The Guardian article does him something of an injustice.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Excuse me, but does Tim Jones claim that this “saving” of the 95% is being done?

For if not, Mr Bates is right that this is a damnation.

Otherwise Mr Turnbull’s stated “concern” in so many words would have been that they are NOT saving the 95%.

NP
Guest
NP

shock, horror!

I bet nobody knew these views were held by people at the Reform conference (last year!) – great journalism, Mr Bates

Tom Alllen
Guest

The flaw in Richard Turnbull’s theology is whether he is concerned to “save” or “damn” but that he thinks that human beings are responsible for this outcome rather than the saving love of God. His base premis seems to be that the 5% are responsible for the fate of the 95% and that is profoundly unChristian and unbiblical. Our Christ-like motive for evangelism and faith sharing is that we have experience something special (the love of God, not that our failures might result in some-one else ending up in hell.

jeremy pemberton
Guest
jeremy pemberton

I would love to see this video – but it looks like it has been, as the Sun would put it, a ‘soaraway success’. Bandwidth exceeded is all i see. Can it be put up again so that it can be enjoyed by us all.
thanks.

Merseymike
Guest
Merseymike

The point is that this is the conservative evangelical position.

I wonder what the 72% of people who ticked the Christian box on the census form would think?

The evangelical position and being a national church, as is the CofE, simply doesn’t fit together.

Cheryl Clough
Guest

Since 95% of the world is damned by God, that is why this world must be replaced with the new pure world, free of the unrepentant sinners. That’s why we don’t have to work on the portion of global warming that humanity generates, nor fix problems of trade imbalance, nor worry about justice for the outcastes, nor worry about hypocrisy in our conducts for the unsaved.’ They are all going to hell and this world is being replaced. Pity the Daughter of Zion thought when Jesus promised gentleness on the back of the donkey that there was actually going to… Read more »

stephen bates
Guest
stephen bates

NP is being particularly obtuse today. The point is that Dr Turnbull publicly denies being a member of Reform or the Church Society – perhaps NP knows differently? – and insists (in tomorrow’s CEN) that Wycliffe Hall is open and inclusive, a veritable forum for debate. Yet his speech at the Reform conference last year – which on the video he also promises to attend this year – shows quite the reverse. As do his reactions in relation to Elaine Storkey. And, Tim Jones, it is quite clear from his remarks that he believes only his version of conservative evangelicalism… Read more »

John
Guest
John

Reading views like this makes me glad that atheism is rising rapidly!

Frozenchristian
Guest
Frozenchristian

It would be interesting to see if Turnbull himself trained at one of the 2 or one of the 4.

Hugh of Lincoln
Guest
Hugh of Lincoln

Have the Reformistas censored the vid?

jody
Guest

Hi

those having trouble with the Reform website might find the video here:

http://radical-evangelical.blogspot.com/2007/05/infamy-infamytheyve-all-got-it-in-for.html

hope that helps.

x Jody

Christopher Shell
Guest
Christopher Shell

Has anyone else noticed that what people think about hell is affected by the prevailing social climate?
What could be more irrelevant to the question than the prevailing social climate?

Pluralist
Guest

The Stephen Bates article highlights another entryist strategy, which is to appear more open to the wider public than in the strategy being worked out with fellow ideologues. The Stephen Bates article shows this, given what is coming in the Church of England Newspaper.

I’ll give a tip to Reform. When you are plotting, don’t put a video clip on your website. It tends to undermine the publicity.

Pluralist
Guest
Simon Sarmiento
Guest

Thank you Jody, and may I also apologise for not giving you a hat tip in my original post.
Simon

David
Guest

>>It would be interesting to see if Turnbull himself trained at one of the 2 or one of the 4.

According to Crockford, he trained at Cranmer in Durham. One of the 4.

As someone studying at one of the “4” as he disparingly describes us, I for one I am quite glad to be there and not studying under his leadership.

Peter Head
Guest
Peter Head

You guys make me laugh.

So far Turnbull has ticked Article VI (on Scripture); Article II (on Christ); Article XIX (on the Church); and Article XVIII (Of obtaining eternal salvation only by the Name of Christ).

He has affirmed a completely normal four-point view of what it means to be an evangelical Christian: Scripture, the Cross, personal relationship with God, evangelism.

And he has a sense of the strategic importance of his position as principal of a theological college.

Shock horror!

Pluralist
Guest

You can now read it: I think itis important enough to transcribe it and I have been as accurate as possible:

http://www.change.freeuk.com/learning/relthink/turnbull.html

jody
Guest

of course Simon :-), apology accepted.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

“You guys make me laugh.”

We always do, don’t we ;=)

Lapinbizarre
Guest
Lapinbizarre

The Reform video link has been back up and working smoothly for much of the day.

Cheryl Clough
Guest

Pluralist’s tip to reformists applies to all violent theologies. When you are plotting, don’t put hard evidence before a people who can defend themselves. It tends to undermine the publicity. Plus they still have the means to mobilise to defend themselves. Better to wait until you have suppressive legislation in place and use red herrings and accusations of paranoia or delusion to discredit those who would send up early warning bells. Once you have control over the institutions and educational facilities, then you can be more open about your agenda. Because all the figures in authority will support you, because… Read more »

Christopher Shell
Guest
Christopher Shell

Who says trying to save this planet from extinction is evil? It goes without saying that anyone who believes the gospel of life will be broadly pacifist, anti-abortion, and ecologically aware and active.

Sarah
Guest
Sarah

It’s clear, as Mark Bennet suggests, that ecclesiology is a central issue here. Turnbull’s rejection of an ‘Anglo-Catholic’ ecclesiology is closely linked to his very alarming comments about diverting the parish share, decentralizing the Church’s finances and securing ideological and economic autonomy for the ‘conservative 2’.
What kind of ecclesiology supports this kind of unaccountability and indiscipline, and this privileging of the future of flourishing conservative parishes (which are overwhelmingly middle-class and urban) over that of congregations in harder areas? Not an historic Anglican one, that’s for sure.

Hugh of Lincoln
Guest
Hugh of Lincoln

The point Turnbull makes about decentralizing the church’s monolithic financial structure is also made in Michael Hampson’s moving book ‘Last Rites: The End of the Church of England'(2006), told from the perspective of an openly gay priest who experienced institutionalised homophobia at first hand. Unlikely bedfellows you might say, but Hampson is in favour of a type of congregationalism along the lines of the Resolution C parishes, giving each parish autonomy over whom it chooses as priest. He would abolish the quota and deployment systems and allow parishes to pay their priests directly, just like Roman Catholics do. Give the… Read more »

JPM
Guest
JPM

>>>Hampson is in favour of a type of congregationalism along the lines of the Resolution C parishes, giving each parish autonomy over whom it chooses as priest. He would abolish the quota and deployment systems and allow parishes to pay their priests directly, just like Roman Catholics do. This is more or less what we do in TEC. I wouldn’t call it congregationalism, exactly, though it’s certainly not as centralized as the way things are done in some provinces. I was wondering…does Turnbull favor extending these privileges to mainstream Anglicans stuck with fundamentalist bishops? Or do his fellow fundamentalists get… Read more »

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

“Give the power back to the laity, I say.”
Isn’t one of the problems we have already a deep lack of comprehensive theological training?

Hugh of Lincoln
Guest
Hugh of Lincoln

Turnbull resists “pontificating” about the C of E’s finances. I wish he hadn’t.

I don’t know what his views are on the broader issues JPM, but if he favours financial decentralization, then he should also accept liberal democratic structures more in keeping with TEC’s polity. Dioceses would then elect their bishops, rather than have them imposed by Downing Street so I doubt if the fundies would get a look in.

NP
Guest
NP

Hugh says Turnbull “.. should also accept liberal democratic structures more in keeping with TEC’s polity. Dioceses would then elect their bishops, rather than have them imposed by Downing Street so I doubt if the fundies would get a look in.” I agree Downing St should not be involved….but do you realise that all over England, the strong, growing CofE churches are evangelical (of whatever shade) …..so your hope that dioceses having more say in who becomes bishop gives more liberals prominence looks like wishful thinking. Especially at the local level, people who have largely failed in leading churches are… Read more »

Hugh of Lincoln
Guest
Hugh of Lincoln

Ah but NP, all over England there are as many women ordinands as men and the church has agreed to women bishops.

Before long, there will be women in the episcopate so decision-making will be different from the hitherto all-male gatherings. We’ll have a more inclusive church.

NP
Guest
NP

Hugh – when you say “we”, who knows what that means…..in a year’ time, you may well be part of TEC Global and you will certainly be very “inclusive” indeed as a rapidly declining organisation

Hugh of Lincoln
Guest
Hugh of Lincoln

Well NP, I’m very excited by the prospect of the C of E becoming part of TEC!

Perhaps the broad church will win the day after all. Certainly there is a spectrum of moderation from Liberal Catholics to Open Evangelicals, appalled by the current political shift in the Communion.

Dom W
Guest
Dom W

Well, this is the first time I have heard him speak, and I made similar notes to Tim at the top of the page, but with different reactions. It sounds pretty sensible to me. His comments on centralised corporatism and manipulation of funding are very striking. Why on earth should the college’s fees have been reduced when they attracted more students? In the end, if you believe there is truth and error, you will disagree with people who have a different idea of what that truth is – there’s no need for people to come here and act so shocked… Read more »

Dr. Irene Lancaster FRSA
Guest

As someone who used to teach Biblical Hebrew to clergy training for the ministry, inter alia, I am dismayed and appalled by the politicking that goes on nowadays. Elaine Storkey is no metziah, as we say in Yiddish, and neither is Giles Fraser. Both have used their roles on ‘Thought for the Day’ to rubbish the Hebrew Bible, instead of nurturing the ties of Judaism and Christianity. At least I now live in Israel where most of the clergy I meet have a good working knowledge of Hebrew, know or are learning Biblical Hebrew (some of them with me) and… Read more »

Tony B
Guest
Tony B

is there a decent glossary of Anglican related acronyms anywhere?

Doug Taylor-Weiss
Guest

Don’t we believe, Dr. Lancaster, that “the Jesus [we] all pretend to admire” CAN see us now?

hrht
Guest

I’m blogging at http://hrht-revisingreform.blogspot.com on the Reform Agenda. Would appreciate you all keeping me up to date. I’m living in a Parish where two churches preach in sympathy with Turnbull – “I’m a charismatic, open, evangelical – get me outa here!!!!”