Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 18 March 2017

Jonathan Clatworthy Château Clâteau Are liberals illiberal about women priests?

Ryan Cook My perilous Journey to Anglican Ordination & Conflictual Love for the Church

Andrew Lightbown Theore0 Neither guides nor principles in the blame game

Kelvin Holdsworth St Eucalyptus and St Anaglypta revisited — Does the Eucharist exist in cyberspace?

Marcia Pally ABC Religion and Ethics Forgive Us Our Trespasses? The Economics of the Lord’s Prayer

Giles Fraser The Guardian As Songs of Praise viewers will find out, the market is bad at doing religion

Charlotte Bannister-Parker ViaMedia.News Learning From our Disagreements

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Susannah Clark
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I share Charlotte’s admiration for Bishop Stephen and I’d re-iterate that the Bishop’s address to his diocesan synod is one of the most realistic, most LGBT+ affirming messages from any of our bishops. It is absolutely clear that Bishop Stephen believes in the positive goodness of lesbian and gay relationships, and wishes the Church could move forward towards institutional affirmation. He is also realistic in recognising that his position sets him at odds with those in the Church who hold a ‘conservative’ position on human sexuality. With regard to Bishop Philip and the Sheffield debacle, Bishop Stephen was partially instrumental… Read more »

Father David
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Father David

“Are liberals illiberal about women priests”
This item has made me think about a quote from an essay that wise old owl – John Habgood wrote in his book “Confessions of a Conservative Liberal” referring long ago to “The Crockford Preface” rumpus.
He wrote “in the long-term the future lies with Catholicism. It must, because only Catholic tradition is rich enough and stable enough to be able to offer something distinctive to the world without being captured by the world.”
Alas, the tumult stirred up by the Sheffield debacle makes this prophecy less likely to come true within the Church of England.

Froghole
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Froghole

I was much moved and disconcerted by Ryan Cook’s Kafkaesque experience. Why do the authorities have to make things so very difficult? What is the point? Very interesting piece by Marcia Pally, and just the sort of thing that should be preoccupying contemporary Christians. She notes that whilst ‘trespass’ comes from Old French (and, therefore, Latin) via Middle English (see the OED entry) the conflation of iniquity and indebtedness might have something to do with Germanic influences on our custom and law (which, as Pollock & Maitland, Adams, Wormald, etc., have observed, is profound). Others have recently noted the identity… Read more »

Kate
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Kate

Andrew Lightbown is continuing to demonstrate a grasp of the issues around the Sheffield fiasco. He said:

“In governance terms I can’t think of a single example where the act of delegation is used so that an executive can avoid doing something for which they have responsibility.”

I would go further. It is actively wrong in terms of both governance and morality to delegate something which one would not do oneself.

Rod Gillis
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Rod Gillis

The Marcia Pally article is certainly intriguing a technical level. The new book certainly looks like a timely contribution for sure. During the interview circuit for her earlier book, New Evangelicals: Expanding the Vision of the Common Good, Pally noted that Catholic social teaching was something of an influence on new evangelicals. Her observation is interesting given that a number of Roman Catholic scholars point out how Catholic social teaching, grounded in natural law, has taken a “biblical turn” beginning with the acceptance of biblical criticism in the twentieth century. However, as writers like Charles Clark point out, an understanding… Read more »

Andrew Lightbown
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Kate – thanks. You are of course correct. In governance terms it is a ‘moral hazard’ to delegate in order to avoid. I just wish the ‘senior leaders’ would address the real issues.

Kate
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Kate

I very much appreciated Kelvin Holdsworth’s discourse and questions. It crystallised for me that there is an essential sacramental component to the Eucharist which is binary: valid or invalid. Additionally there is a separate analogue question of effectiveness in areas like fellowship and personal revelation. I won’t repeat here what I posted on Kelvin’s site. But it got me wondering whether there might be two aspects to other sacraments – digital validity and analogue effectiveness. For instance, might the theological answer to the Gordion Knot (Lightbown) Synod has tied be resolved by accepting as our teaching the premise that the… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
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Perhaps the most important paragraph in Andrew Lightbown’s thoughtful essay is this one: “Delegation is an act of moral agency where the sponsor, holder or guarantor of an action positively affirms that action through the agency of another person. Delegation, in the moral sense, is seldom, if ever, used to avoid performing an action that an individual would ordinarily undertake. We delegate that which we believe in, will and wish to affirm. Delegation does not depersonalize decisions.” Even if a Diocesan Bishop chooses to ‘delegate’ responsibility to another bishop to perform ordinations (of women priests) on the diocesan’s behalf; the… Read more »

Janet
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Janet

Kate, technically the C of E does not believe that ordination is a sacrament. According to Article XXV there are only 2 sacraments, ‘Baptism and the Supper of the Lord.’ It further avers that ‘Those five commonly called Sacraments…Confirmation, Penance, Orders, Matrimony, and extreme Unction, are not to be counted for Sacraments of the Gospel…’. Article XXVI tells us that the validity of a sacrament is not determined by the ‘wickedness’ of the minister; it is ‘effectual’ for those who ‘by faith and rightly do receive the Sacraments ministered unto them…because of Christ’s institution and promise’. The Articles are not… Read more »