Wednesday, 4 May 2005

more response to NACDAP

The Bishop of California Bill Swing has again attacked NACDAP on his diocesan site and in the Witness with This Mutiny Will Fail; the Church Will Abide. After summarising remarks made by another, unnamed, but easily recognisable bishop, he comments:

There have been people inside the Episcopal Church and outside the Episcopal Church who have been plotting our church’s demise long before there was an Episcopal election in New Hampshire: for almost half a century. The plotters have been living in a fury of win-lose for generations. Finally, they have assumed that they cannot win and take control of the Episcopal Church so they seek to destroy it and assume control as the orthodox remnant. Timing is everything for them. They see the present moment as the perfect storm where wealthy American ideologues and angry African bishops and cultural divides and shocked ecumenical and interfaith partners converge to assist their victory.

What they don’t realize is that the Episcopal Church has more staying power than they suppose. When our bishops, priests, and deacons took a solemn oath at ordination vowing to be loyal to the doctrine, discipline, worship of the Episcopal Church, we meant it. Millions of laity for hundreds of years have confirmed their faith in context of the Episcopal Church — in good times and bad. Together we gave our sacred honor to the revelation of God in Christ as lived out in the Episcopal Church. Our history has been earned with countless sacrifices. We have all been embarrassed as well as enhanced; won some, lost some. With prayer, sweat, and endurance we have built cathedrals, seminaries, religious communities, youth camps, schools, social ministries, hospitals, and churches. We will abide. Although the Southern Cone finds us unacceptable, we will abide. Even though the Archbishop of Canterbury and the primates and Anglican Consultative Council sever us from their fellowship, we will abide. Personally, I don’t think that the Archbishop of Canterbury would ever do that, but should he dismiss us, we will abide.

I genuinely grieve that we have all reached this moment. But this is not the last moment, only a passing moment. There will be fairer days, and in the light I expect to see the Episcopal Church afloat on the deep and sailing. This mutiny will fail. The Episcopal Church will abide.

Another view of NACDAP plans can be found in What would +Rowan do? by Thomas Bushnell.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Wednesday, 4 May 2005 at 10:07pm BST
You can make a Permalink to this if you like
Categorised as: ECUSA

The more I think about it, the more I think people should go read James 1:19-2:8 ( The idea that people could be against the friendly wee Episcopalian church down the road from me is depressing and abhorrent.

Posted by: Tim on Thursday, 5 May 2005 at 10:11am BST

Who cares what Swing thinks. He's in the backwash of Christian movement. He sounds like he gets his views from Air America. When I was very young, the country had apopulation of about 130,000,000. Since then the poipulation has more than doubled, but the ECUSA hasn't grown as well. Swing, Ed Bacon, and others can't seem to figure out why that is.

Posted by: Jan Nylander on Friday, 6 May 2005 at 12:22am BST

What is so amazing is that Bishop Swing cannot conceive that he may be wrong! When the huge majority of the Anglican Communion suggest such he and his colleagues cry that they are suffering prophets. Perhaps he should consider that those opposed to these Episcopal novelties might be right.

On a second matter raised by +Swing -- he refers to the loyalty vows taken at ordination. These are to Episcopal doctrine as a part of Anglican doctrine. This is inherent in our ECUSA constitution. If the doctrines of ECUSA depart those of the Anglican Communion then I believe that our ordination vows require us to be Anglican and to say no to those who would lead us from Anglicanism as defined by the Communion.

While ordination vows are being referred to; those of us ordained under the 1928 or 1662 ordinal have taken a vow to defend the church from false teachings contrary to God's Word. No Bishop can demand obedience that might call us to break such a vow to God.

I suggest that +Swing is leading his flock astray and that the repentance called for by such as ++Venables applies to him as well as his colleagues in the USA who have caused this crisis and effective schism.

Posted by: Ian Montgomery on Friday, 6 May 2005 at 4:14am BST

Does anyone have a link to the set of vows taken at ordination time?

Posted by: Tim on Friday, 6 May 2005 at 5:48pm BST

This is the wording for Priests in the ECUSA Ordinal:

The Bishop says to the ordinand

Will you be loyal to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of Christ as this Church has received them? And will you, in accordance with the canons of this Church, obey your bishop and other ministers who may have authority over you and your work?


I am willing and ready to do so; and I solemnly declare that I do believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the Word of God, and to contain all things necessary to salvation; and I do solemnly engage to conform to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of The Episcopal Church.

Posted by: Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 6 May 2005 at 6:14pm BST

quote: "I solemnly declare that I do believe the Holy Scriptures... and I do solemnly engage to conform to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of The Episcopal Church."
Do we have an idea of what The Episcopal Church used to believe? I understand there was a certain 'reformation' at some stage in ECUSA's history (forgive my ignorance).
If you want to see how far some of our leaders have got from this solemn commitment, check out Swing's AMAZING universalism website and the bio @ give him as pioneer of same - it is "jaw-drop" as they in England, pure, unadulterated heresy. If the local Parish Church Council can oust its minister, can't a diocesan synod (if it were majority orthodox) oust its bishop?!!! If only...

Posted by: Tony Somervell on Friday, 6 May 2005 at 10:55pm BST

This is the US 1928 BCP vow to which I referred in my earlier comment.

Bishop. Will you be ready, with all faithful diligence, to
banish and drive away from the Church all erroneous and
strange doctrines contrary to God's Word; and to use both
public and private monitions and exhortations, as well to
the sick as to the whole, within your Cures, as need shall
require, and occasion shall be given?
Answer. I will, the Lord being my helper.

1662 (under which I was ordained) is identical

There are also vows to obey the "godly admonitions and judgements" of the bishop under whom we minister.

Bishop. WILL you reverently obey your Bishop/Ordinary, and other chief Ministers, unto whom is committed the
charge and government over you; following with a glad mind and will their godly admonitions, and
submitting yourselves to their godly judgments?
Answer. I will so do, the Lord being my helper.

The key word surely is "Godly" and begs the question of what we do when such a bishop might require obedience to something "ungodly."

Posted by: Ian Montgomery on Saturday, 7 May 2005 at 4:00am BST
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