Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 14 May 2016

Guy Elsmore Modern Church Can liberals embrace the Growth Agenda? Part 2 of 3.
This week it was announced that Guy is to become Archdeacon of Buckingham.

As a follow-up to one of last week’s threads, Andrew Lightbown has written ‘In Christ,’ absolutely; but….

Jayne Ozanne wrote “Perfect Love Casts Out Fear”.

Fr Jonathan has written On the Eucharist: Yes, Anglicans Believe in the Real Presence.

Chimene Suleyman has written Sadiq Khan may not represent a win for all Muslims, nor should he.

John Reader has written The EU Debate: A Primer in Political Theology.

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Rod GillisjnwallDavid EmmottKateMark Hart Recent comment authors
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Susannah Clark
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John Reader presents what he concedes is a partisan view of the EU debate. Personally I don’t have much of a pony in this race. I’m marginally in favour of remaining in, because of the protections the EU seems to offer on human rights, but I’m also profoundly sceptical about the political union thing, because of the importance of self-determination. In addition, being pro-Scottish independence, an English decision to Leave could actually expedite Scotland’s decision in the next referendum. Identity matters, as a basis for relationship, and that should include the self-determining right to dissent, to opt out, to vary.… Read more »

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

Thanks for the link to The Conciliar Anglican. His pieces are always well written, none more so than this one on real presence. Just a riff on the notion about places at the Lord’s table. It is the Lord’s table. We are there as his guest. Like all good hosts ( no pun intended) The Lord is present to the guests. Christ is the founder of the feast. He is not on the menu.

Father Ron Smith
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What a wonderful and wise post from Andrew Lightbown; with this paradigm of unity in diversity.

See also an article by the ACANZP Bishop of Dunedin, +Kelvin Wright, on what the English tradition of Unity in Diversity might mean for New Zealand’s and the Pacific Islands’ Anglican Church:

http://vendr.blogspot.com/2016/05/pulling-together.html

“Come, Holy Spirit, fill your Faithful with the fire of your Love, through Christ our Lord”

Tim Chesterton
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I obviously don’t self-identify as a theological liberal, but that article by Guy Elsmore was full of real gems.

Kate
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Kate

“I hope that all Christians hate murder in all its manifestations and whatever its motivations, for to murder is always an expression of hatred of the other.” And yet the official Church of England position is support for “just war”, and the links with the armed forces are surprisingly deep. The church also stays silent on abortion rather than following the exemplary lead on the subject set by the Catholic Church. So in terms of the most basic of hating the sin, the Church of England itself doesn’t even make the starting line. It isn’t just loving the sinner which… Read more »

rjb
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rjb

@ Rod I think the difference between the Lord’s feast and a polite dinner-party is that the host is indeed “on the menu.” The Eucharist is not merely an opportunity for Christ to offer his friends rather meagre entertainment (what host provides his guests with a dry wafer and a tiny sip of wine?). The sacrament is a rather more extreme and discomfiting form of self-giving than that: as ever, a stumbling-block to the Jews and foolishness to the Protestants. Having said that, few overtures make me more uneasy than a sentence beginning with the words “Anglicans believe…” Almost anything… Read more »

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

@rjb, Polite dinner party, with its habitual polite superficial conversation, is not the kind of feast I was thinking of. Good you rule that out. I was thinking more in terms of messianic banquet or even symposium. Notwithstanding, the turn of phrase, Jesus is the founder of the feast but not the menu, is helpful. It is a reflection on the over focus of the magic words summoning the deus ex machina to come and reside in the food stuffs. St. Luke is helpful. The Emmaus road myth wonderfully imagines a Christ who is present in the sweep of an… Read more »

David Emmott
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David Emmott

Re Fr Jonathan’s blog on the Eucharist and real presence. I found it very affirming and a valuable corrective to the trivialisation of the Eucharist in so much of present-day Anglicanism (in England at any rate). And contra Rod Gillis, Christ is not just the host at the feast, but the feast itself (and of course the Host). It’s a mystery too deep for words, but Anglican worship needs to regain that mystery, and draw people into the heart of God and of God’s suffering and death, in order for them (us) to share in the resurrection. As T S… Read more »

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

@ David Emmott, Certainly, the Eucharist is no trivial matter, but a mystery. With all due respect to the literary genius of T.S. Eliot, his is an over the top poetic expression. The text below is from the WCC document, Baptism, Ministry, Eucharist: Faith and Order Paper no. 111, Eucharist: II The Meaning of the Eucharist # 13, Commentary (13): Many churches believe that by the words of Jesus and by the power of the Holy Spirit, the bread and wine of the eucharist become, in a real though mysterious manner, the body and blood of the risen Christ, i.e.,… Read more »

Tim Chesterton
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Note to self: re-read Cranmer on the Eucharist. One of the best books on the subject I’ve ever read.

James Byron
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James Byron

Rjb: the Catholic Church automatically excommunicates anyone who has, or assists in, an abortion; the CoE allows is members, or even its priests, to do so without any sanction or investigation whatsoever.

Actions speak a lot louder than words, and here, we have classic English ecclesiastical hypocrisy. As so often, the CoE lacks the courage of its supposed convictions, whether that’s sanctioning those involved in abortions, or having the guts to come out and support a woman’s right to choose.

Mark Hart
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Guy Elsmore is wrong in attributing the report ‘From Anecdote to Evidence’ to Prof David Voas. It was produced in Church House and it is not the place to look for an accurate account of the church growth research. ‘From Anecdote to Evidence’ is a glossy and tendentious ‘summary’. The full report by David Voas and Laura Watt is far more interesting and reliable.

Kate
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Kate

Thank you James. That’s my sense too. The CofE policy on abortion has all the appearance of a paper policy which is never spoken of.

David Emmott
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David Emmott

@Rod Gillis. I’m no theologian (and no literary scholar either) but I can’t help but think the only response to a mystery can be poetry, or silence.

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

@ David Emmott, sure thing. Check out this poem, Real Presence, by Nan Shepherd.

http://www.scottishpoetrylibrary.org.uk/poetry/poems/real-presence

jnwall
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jnwall

Fr Jonathan asks for a “fully formed Catholic theology, grounded in the Scriptures and the historic teaching of the Church.” He will, I hope, be relieved to learn that we already have one, the Anglican-Roman Catholic Agreed Statement on the Eucharist, produced by ARCIC (the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission) in 1971. One action of Lambeth Conference in 1988 was to recognize this Agreed Statement as an official teaching on Anglican Eucharistic doctrine of the Anglican Communion. In 1996, Archbishop Carey and Pope John Paul II signed a joint statement that, from a Roman Catholic perspective, affirms that the Roman Catholic… Read more »

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

Folks may be interested in this article by John H. McKenna, C.M. “…crucial is the issue of the manifold presence of Christ in the Eucharist, namely, in the whole believing community and especially when the faithful gather together in his name, in the présider and ministers of the assembly, and in the proclamation of the Scriptures in the assembly. Christ is really, personally present and active in all of these, although according to different modes. To understand Christ’s presence in the bread and wine we must situate this presence in the context of these other modes of presence.89 Finally, there… Read more »

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

@jnwall, Thanks for the reminder about ARCIC and The Lambeth Conference. ARCIC statements, like BEM, are landmark ecumenical documents with welcome achievements. A link to Lambeth 1998 Resolution 8 re ARCIC is included below.

Note, “Some provinces asked for clarification about the meaning of anamnesis and bread and wine ‘becoming’ the body and blood of Christ. But no province rejected the Statement and many were extremely positive.”

http://www.anglicancommunion.org/resources/document-library/lambeth-conference/1988/resolution-8-anglican-roman-catholic-international-commission-(arcic)?author=Lambeth+Conference&year=1988