Thinking Anglicans

Lambeth: Tom Wright's talk

Fulcrum has the full text over here.

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Peter of WestminsterFord ElmsGöran Koch-SwahneBen WSarah Flynn Recent comment authors
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Cheryl Va.
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Good heavens.

Does Jesus agree with these priests?

Jesus, who actually can talk to God, the Shekina, Levi, Adam and Eve, Moses, Elija, John the Baptist, the Daughter of Zion, the prophets, the saints and the apostles.

How can priests credibly claim Jesus agrees with this dribble and then that Jesus is the “complete and perfect” fulfillment of scriptures when they claim he is not for peace, or counselling or comforting, and that he never got around to redeeming the feminine or binding up the broken hearted.

Pluralist
Guest

Well there are bits to agree with, disagree with, and agree with in part but develop. But what pomposity he carries:

“There is much more to say, as Jesus himself said in the Farewell Discourses, but you cannot bear it now.”

john
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john

I find it hard to comment levelly on Tom Wright.

I think it’s rhetoric-heavy, content-lite, incredibly egotistic, and evasive to the point of dishonesty on crucial issues (postmodernism and Gnosticism are straw men for serious engagement with really difficult things). Everything he writes and says is like this.

It’s obviously impossible in a context such as this to substantiate these criticisms. They need substantiation. I certainly believe this is a very serious matter. I’ll have a go at it in our parish magazine.

James
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James

That is a fantastic message for both sides to hear. It’s a shame Nigeria, Uganda, etc aren’t there for it.

At least (most of) the bishops in TEC and other similar provinces have heard it.

Cheryl, I have to point out that NT Write hasn’t really claimed any of these things. Although I understand that his repeated emphasis that ethics are not decided by those who scream the loudest might make you uncomfortable.

Fr Mark
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Fr Mark

Tom Wright’s got a weird take on Empire here. He seems to have bought into a sloppy reading of history, and a shallow understanding of his own British society, suggesting that the “gay crisis” in the Anglican Communion is an example of American imperialism. This is a shockingly wrong thing to say. TEC had to gain its independence after clumsy handling by imperially-minded 18th English bishops, whose successors have been patronising Episcopalians ever since; TEC has not been the perpetrator of historic imperialism so much as a victim of it. Neither TEC nor the Canadian Church is currently trying to… Read more »

Ch Steven Rindahl
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Ch Steven Rindahl

In my opinion +Wright does a fine job in this article. His emphasis seems to be to negate the methodology of each side’s extremists and explore how they both need to see a bigger picture. I suspect that his critics primarily come from those extreme ends which would rather spend time spitting at each other than seeking to honor Christ.

D. C. Toedt
Guest

Bishop Wright seems content to assume that, in the entire 13.7-billion-year history of the trillions of solar systems in the cosmos, the pivotal events occurred in just a few thousand years, in the travails of one small tribe of humans, supposedly culminating in the execution of one of their number and the events immediately following. It’s as though all we have learned since that time about the universe and its history is of no consequence to “the narrative.” Such thinking betrays a curiously-exaggerated sense of the importance of humanity; or as Paul Zahl might put it, an unjustifiably-high anthropology.

Malcolm+
Guest

The more I read and hear of Tom Wright, the more my mind is drawn to a well-known movie quote (here adapted for the present circumstance:

“Pay no attention to that man beneath the mitre!”

Sarah Flynn
Guest
Sarah Flynn

RE: Bishop Tom Wright Why is it that I and many others are drawn to the Dalai Lama whose spirituality and compassion and calls for justice are convincing, while arguments against gnosticism, postmodernism and empire are marshalled to make an exclusive claim for Christianity— which is supposed to be about the love of God and neighbor? And why is it that the bishop does not mention homosexuality as an expression of the diversity of creation but resorts to the alleged complimentarity of male and female as somehow normative for all? With as many homosexual people in this world, not to… Read more »

Peter of Westminster
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Peter of Westminster

Good heavens. What a jumble. Half a dozen things and more are shoehorned into the Bishop’s use of the word Gnosticism — Christian mysticism, pop psychology, Pelagianism, the Enlightenment, science, Manichaeism, and deontological approaches to ethics among them. And postmodernism? Just a straw man, as John has noted. Like existentialism before it, Postmodernism is an already fading philosophical fad of a generation — a happy road to tenure for a few philosophers and very many literary critics. Bishop Wright never really tells us what he thinks PoMo is, but, hey, this is not really his fault, as anything that is… Read more »

Ben W
Guest
Ben W

Peter, He does protest too much! One has the sense that if bp Wright had followed a more simple line of thought here the criticism would be that he did not recognize the complexity of the situation (regularly the response here to more direct statements). Arbitrary and therefore baseless criticism. In cotext it is quite right to say “America is an imperial power” exercising great power over others beyond its own shores (and not always against the interests of those others!). So if you are into quibbling please yourself. This is a hoot, “TEC is a rare prophetic counterbalance?” Since… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

The usual (and worn) anti Modern prejudices about the Enlightenment… unconscious ideas of Power and submission, a cavalcade of negative etiquettes (Culture, Gnosticism, the anti Modern canard “Post-modernism”), generally misunderstood…

Novel? Original? Striking? or Sancho Pancha charging his Windmills?

Ford Elms
Guest
Ford Elms

“In cotext it is quite right to say “America is an imperial power” exercising great power over others beyond its own shores (and not always against the interests of those others!).”

Ben, you and I are so often on opposite sides of the fence, acrimoniously so, I’d thought I’d weigh in to say that I totally agree with you on this point. It is an economic and cultural empire rather than one based on conquest, so it is harder for some to recognize, but it’s an empire none the less.

Peter of Westminster
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Peter of Westminster

Ben,

Well, at least you let me have my terminological quibbles. But with this:

“This is a hoot, “TEC is a rare prophetic counterbalance?” Since when? Probably like all those Dems who voted for the Iraq war and then climb onto the next bandwagon coming along.”

haven’t you provided evidence of my last point?