Thursday, 4 October 2007

Fort Worth prepares to dissociate

The Diocese of Fort Worth has published documentation for its annual convention to consider:

“Today the Standing Committee of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth announced its decision to sponsor five proposed amendments to the Diocesan Constitution and Canons for consideration at the diocese’s 25th Annual Convention on November 16 and 17, 2007. [PDF document below]

If adopted, the Diocese would take the first step needed to dissociate itself from the General Convention of The Episcopal Church and to begin the process of affiliating with another Province of the worldwide Anglican Communion. Since constitutional changes do not go into effect until they are approved by two successive diocesan conventions, the second, ratifying vote would come at the annual meeting in 2008. Under the proposals, the Diocese would reaffirm its position as “a constituent member of the Anglican Communion, a Fellowship of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, consisting of those duly constituted Dioceses, Provinces and regional churches in communion with the See of Canterbury, upholding and propagating the historic Faith and Order as set forth in the Book of Common Prayer.”

Read the full announcement here.

See also the full report of the Committee on Constitution and Canons as a PDF file here.

Read the Episcopal News Service story: FORT WORTH: Standing Committee proposes severing Episcopal Church ties.

And the Living Church story Fort Worth Will Vote on Affiliations at Convention.

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported it as Panel advises splitting from U.S. Episcopal Church.

The Dallas Morning News had Fort Worth Episcopal Diocese proposes break from church.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Thursday, 4 October 2007 at 11:35pm BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: ECUSA
Comments

So, when do we declare the See vacant?

Posted by: berggasse19 on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 4:37am BST

So goodbye already...adios, hasta la vista, happy trails...please leave TEC property/goods on the "way out"...the "way out" is something Bishop Iker is familar with as he's unable to stay in a room and have a actual, grown up, big boy conversation with anyone he shuns at The Body of Christ.

Will we need to send TEC Sheriff's Posse after him/them or will they leave the building and prayer books/worship finery and generations of accumulated loot for the loyal Episcopalians and their kids and grandkids and EVERYONE else?

The Episcopal Church WELCOMES everyone else!

We will "leave the door open and a light burning" should you care to return from whatever it is that you insist/demand is righteous RIGHT!

Posted by: Leonardo Ricardo, San Juan, Puerto Rico on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 5:51am BST

Good work, ABC..... your political strategies, bending over backwards to please the radical, minority views of TEC HOB, giving them freedom to keep on breaking agreed Anglican positions are causing schism - but note, the people you will not speak to in "the Network" are very similar to most of the AC and most of us would rather keep them than VGR......are you sure you can fool or force enough people to stand with those who "tore the fabric of the Communion"?

Posted by: NP on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 7:17am BST

Excuse me, NP, but I thought you had been confidently telling us that the ABC's stance was exactly the opposite of what you have just posted, and that he could be relied upon to act in ways that supported the seccessionists.

The small number of congregations and bishops who hold a narrowly dogmatic view of scripture and a judgmental view of creation, are engineering their departure from the Communion. They will free the Communion to enagage with more critical issues of God, including justice for the poor, human sexuality in general and the full inclusion of LGBT people in every Province of the Communion.

Am I over-optimistic? Yes, deliberately. I believe in God who is infintely loving, just, truthful, compassionate, infusing us with hope. Those with a deep hostility to the full inclusion of LGBT people may finally have the courage to walk away. The Anglican Communion is clearly not home for them.

Posted by: Colin Coward on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 10:18am BST

Colin -I have been telling you, that in the end, the ABC has always acted in line with the majority of the AC.

With Jeff John and in Tanzania, he bent over backwards to please people who share your agenda in the church...but in the end, he retreated for the sake of unity - did he not?

I view the JSC stitch-up in the same way as I viewed the "sub group" report in Tanzania..... clearly biased and it is not going to be accepted by the majority.

Colin, God, who gave us the bible, makes his will clear on many things....and also requires those who follow him to be radical in their obedience. He asks a lot from us all and often at great cost....look at Abraham and Isaac, look at David and Goliath, look at the cross.....
As I have said, if it were up to me, I would agree with the innovations that Changing Attitude proposes but I am afraid that I cannot depart from what God has made very clear is his will in the bible....I certainly cannot justify going against his prohibitions and cite his love and compassion while ignoring his holy requirements of us.

Posted by: NP on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 11:21am BST

Assuming that not every parish in the FW diocese agrees with Iker and company, what provisions will be made for them? I mean, if conservative parishes in liberal dioceses can demand alternate arrangements, shouldn't the reverse also be true?

Or is the sauce only fit for the goose and not the gander?

Posted by: Pat O'Neill on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 11:35am BST

Fascinating Article on American Secessionists in Today's Independent, and it doesn't mention ECUSA once!

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/article3028714.ece

Posted by: Father David on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 11:58am BST

Since when, Fr. Coward, should one expect consistency from evangelicals? The evos always argue up one side of an issue and down the other, in what ever way it supports their preconceived positions.

Posted by: Kurt on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 12:46pm BST

Might all this be known in a few years as the Pittsburgh Tea Party?

I'm surprised people aren't advocating that Queen Elizabeth declare the White House vacant and move to recover our rightful property.

On the other hand, as someone once said, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical. ... It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government."

Posted by: John Richardson on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 12:57pm BST

Something is wrong with NPs record player. He puts the same record on, as ever, and the needle gets stuck, but I think it is playing backwards.

Posted by: Pluralist on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 1:31pm BST

Since the legal position of the Episcopal Church is that dioceses and parishes can't leave (although individuals of course may), Title IV, Canon 9 would allow the PB to inhibit a Bishop who departs from the Episcopal Church, pending a vote of the HOB. If the HOB concurs, then the Bishop is removed from office. Title I, Canon 2, makes it the duty of the PB to provide for "interim Episcopal services" in the event of a vacancy in the Diocese.

Posted by: Paul Davison on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 3:22pm BST

NP, you have amazing, God-like powers.

You know exactly what God wants for LGBT people.

You know that Lambeth 1.10 and TWR are flawless statements of orthodox, universal, never-to-be-changed Christian teaching on human sexuality.

You are able to foretell my own thoughts and ideas.

You know what the majority in the AC think.

You know what the ABC thinks and who he has always sided with.

You get so many people posting here in response to you.

You are on the 'right' side and know the thoughts of everyone.

Divinity indeed.

Posted by: Colin Coward on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 3:45pm BST

NP- Give it up.
You're out on a limb and it's geting cut off.
+++Rowan has been clear, if you leave TEC you are out of the communion. You all are on the highway to Nowhere and you will lose, everything.

Posted by: John Robison on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 4:22pm BST

Colin - your email is ridiculously funny.
Not feeling I can condone behaviour "incompatible with scripture" is behaving like God, is it???

I say that I want to stick to an agreed, scripture-based, Anglican position and you do not like it so you go off the deep end.....

May I remind you that the position of the CofE, as stated in Lambeth 1.10 and reaffirmed in Windsor, is not changed and it is consistent with the RC church and the vast majority of Christians in the Western world as well as the whole world.

May I remind you that your friends in TEC now claim to be Windsor compliant? (we know they are holding their fingers crossed behind their backs, but that is their claim)

You can attack me as much as you like but the CofE has not been persuaded by Changing Attitude despite all the years of campaigning and labelling theological opposition as oppression - has it?? This is not because I or anyone else is acting like God but, on the contrary, because many of us still want to stick to the word of God in the bible and do not feel we have the right to parts of it which are inconvenient for you or me or anybody else.

Posted by: NP on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 4:46pm BST

John Richardson:

' On the other hand, as someone once said, "I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical... It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government'

What an apposite quote. As far as Fort Worth and the conservative evangelical wing are concerned this is precisely what the Church is all about: politics and power.

Posted by: John Omani on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 5:22pm BST

Kurt,
A recent study of people ages 16-29 years-old done by The Barna Group here in the United States has found that only 3% have a favorable opinion of evangelicals. Central to this was their perception of the Right's judgmental and "unchristian" additude toward gays and lesbians.
In case you are wondering, The Barna Group does nation-wide surveys and reports, typically for the religious middle to right wing.
Tom Downs

Posted by: Tom Downs on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 5:38pm BST

But then you don't know any Greek, do you, NP?

So you wouldn't be able to tell, anyway.

Posted by: Göran Koch-Swahne on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 6:44pm BST

I am sure that Fort Worth knows that there will be a legal contest for the churches and other assets. The Episcopal Church will not disappear from the city and diocese of Fort Worth, and leave its parishioners and possessions to the new religion of Ikerism. Of course, I am equally sure that ++Iker has American financial backers who supporting his legal defense. Still it is a very unhappy day.

Posted by: Andrew on Friday, 5 October 2007 at 8:05pm BST

I liked Kurt’s posting and thanks Tom for helping me put it into context.

There are some evangelicals who do as Kurt suggested, just as there are some Jews, Muslims, entrepreneurs, government representatives and scientists who do the same. It can happen for a number of reasons, they are in the pockets of an authority figure and have a secret agenda, they don't know that they've been fed a poisoned diet missing crucial ingredients and overly laced with hazardous substances, they are in denial that things could really be that bad...

One of the good things about the last few years is that some souls are taking a step back and asking what it means to be a good evangelical. Such souls have picked up on AIDS, the environment, poverty, human rights, justice, reconciliation and reverence. May God bless such souls and may their parishes flourish accordingly.

In the meantime, there are still a large number of argumentative Korech campers. The gap between them and others is getting large enough that when the earth moves to swallow them, a lot of innocent souls are not going to get dragged down with them. Praise be to God for showing such patience and giving souls the chance to escape.

There are souls who claim their church is “the bride" of Christ. They are more like prostitutes or concubines, partaking of the feast on the table and enjoying the flattery of Jesus' supporters, but ignorant of and indifferent to their wifely responsibilities. Whenever asked about why things are not as they should be, they simply shrug it off as "God's will" or wash their hands and pretend they are not complicit with the world's woes. Shame on them.

If they want to claim to be "the" bride of "the" God, then they better start acting like God's wife would. She would not be limited in who she offers grace to; nor would she put a price on her dispensations; nor would she with hold justice from any soul; nor would she fail to respect the boundaries decreed by God; nor would she fail to trust in God; nor would she deny God and higher souls' existence and rights to move as and when God decrees it necessary. Souls who do all of the above and then claim to be God's wife are guilty of attempted identity theft.

Posted by: Cheryl Va. Clough on Saturday, 6 October 2007 at 12:07am BST

NP, what you find ridiculously funny is to other people, life-threatening and soul-destroying. I refer to the homophobia and prejudice which conservatives in all churches encourage and which the Roman Catholic Church and Lambeth 1.10 endorse. Ask Davis Mac-Iyalla if there is anything funny about the prejudices you purvey. I don’t care whether you condone my behaviour or not, because you don’t know how I behave.

You are frighteningly and consistently wrong about so many things. You ignore reality, as with the state of affairs at Wycliffe and your misrepresentation of 1.10, Windsor, etc. It is this wilful distortion of truth that I stand against.

Conversations with bishops and members of General Synod, and with Changing Attitude members of General Synod and bishops who are patrons of Changing Attitude, show that the CofE (which isn’t a monolithic body, but is composed of human beings with a great variety of views) has indeed been persuaded by Changing Attitude, LGCM and other groups. The debates in General Synod in February 2007 are witness to this.

Our friends in TEC are the members of Integrity. TEC does not claim to be Windsor compliant, does it? I thought you had decided that the TEC HoB meeting hasn’t fulfilled the Dar es Salaam expectations. Are you now telling me that they have? I don’t think they have.

I don’t label theological opposition as oppression. I label abusive Christian teaching as oppression.

I stick to the Word of God in the Bible. The Word is Jesus Christ and the first word is love, God, neighbour, self. I love myself, a gay man.

There is no agreed, scripture-based, Anglican position on homosexuality. There are documents which are being fought-over and disagreed about. The Primates do not agree among themselves. Provinces do not agree between themselves. Bishops and priests and lay people do not agree with each other.

You live in a small enclave of the church, or enclave of your mind, that thinks these things are clear and definitively settled. They are not. They never will be, because the church will always now have heterosexual, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered members who will not allow the church to avoid the issue of our complex human sexuality. Neither will God lets us avoid it.

Posted by: Colin Coward on Saturday, 6 October 2007 at 8:54am BST

Goran - when you are appointed Regius Professor of Greek, I will read your posts.....but we both know that ain't going to happen

Posted by: NP on Saturday, 6 October 2007 at 12:37pm BST

The irony of Ft. Worth's proposed constitutional amendments is that they may not go far enough.

What happens if (when?) Akinola and company walk away from Lambeth and declare that they are no longer in communion with Canterbury? Iker and Ft. Worth will be stuck with a constitution that says they have to be in communion with Canterbury, which then, free from any further pressure from the GS conservatives, will tell Iker in no uncertain terms to get back into the fold of The Episcopal Church.

Posted by: Jim Pratt on Saturday, 6 October 2007 at 5:32pm BST

The quality of this site has declined greatly since it became NP's blog.

Posted by: JPM on Saturday, 6 October 2007 at 9:46pm BST

What JPM said on Saturday, 6 October 2007 at 9:46pm BST

Posted by: Prior Aelred on Sunday, 7 October 2007 at 3:23pm BST

JPM "The quality of this site has declined greatly since it became NP's blog."


Au contraire, it's good practice dealing with the Jehovah's Witnesses and their legalistic quasi-scripturalism when they hammer on the Vicarage door. Let's have more NP, he could become an integral part of a 'dealing with doorstep evangelism' training programme!

Posted by: Mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) on Monday, 8 October 2007 at 9:49am BST

-thanks Mynster - I was quite hurt by JPM's post...... don't see JPM getting TA mentioned in the Times! (just joking, relax!)

-seriously, thought "listening" was supposed to be popular with liberals - but not to conservative views?


- TA would be more boring if it were just made up of people complaining about the nasty conservatives and playing the victime - is it not better for having liberal prejudices and inconsistencies challenged? Others do this better than I so I do not claim credit myself - just making a general point that the dialogue is more interesting than the party-line liberal stuff here.

(I do not read Mr Virtue's readers' comments - just too many "conservatives" saying they agree with him..... if TA's comments were just liberals whingeing on, I would certainly try and beat my addiction to TA - do those patches help??)

Posted by: NP on Monday, 8 October 2007 at 12:46pm BST

"Au contraire, it's good practice dealing with the Jehovah's Witnesses and their legalistic quasi-scripturalism when they hammer on the Vicarage door. Let's have more NP."

While I'm sure that the Jehovah's Witnesses are an unavoidable fact of life at the Vicarage, one of the advantages of the second-floor (UK first) apartment that I have occupied for the decade is the front-porch/balcony from which I can survey and pass judgment. JW's do not make the cut. Maybe, Mynsterpreost, you could set up a TA overflow site, syphoning off a little of legalistic quasi-scripturalism for your private amusement. For the rest of us - we can drop by when and as the Spirit takes us.

I am intrigued by the NP-ism "this is not the first 15 mins I have had and it is unlikely to be the last". Who are we dealing with here? Can it be that Jonathan Aitken is secretly in our midst? Ruth Gledhill owes us. By raising NP from anonymous obscurity to yet-more-anonymous mention in her column, she started this one. A little "who was that masked man" investigative journalism is in order, Ms. Gledhill. Jonathan Aiken? Aiken's approach to syntax and sentence structure suggests otherwise. Has to be someone else who once enjoyed his or her "15 minutes" (personally, I do not feel that one-time anonymous mention, even in the pages of the Times, reaches this Warholian status). But a wide open field. My sentimental favourite for who or what lies behind OZ The Great And Tewwible's curtain is one-hit-wonder '60's chart-hitter Napoleon XIV.

But of course, I could be wrong.

Posted by: Lapinbizarre on Monday, 8 October 2007 at 3:01pm BST

"thought "listening" was supposed to be popular with liberals"

NP, the trouble is that, on TA, the Liberals listen, it is you who do not. Go ahead, prove my point!

Posted by: Ford Elms on Tuesday, 9 October 2007 at 4:20pm BST

JPM

"The quality of this site has declined greatly since it became NP's blog."

While NP might be annoying, take heart, he dares to post what wiser souls would refrain from doing. S/he provides the evidence that such souls exist, that others try to deny that they do. He is a blessing because when others try to make out that we are paranoid and no Christian would act that way, NP leaps into the fray to prove that such souls do exist and they do act that way.

NP is a blessing from God. S/he is the Balaam who can not help blessing the Israelites even as they attempt to curse them... :-)

The site is far more boring without him, and we would not have the evidence of our problems if he controlled himself. There are others who help too.

God bless them all. How could we prove there was a problem with aggressive Christianity unless aggressive Christians jumped to the fore to prove they exist. They can't stop being aggressive, because then their parishes would be full of the riff raff they are trying to drive away. God has put them in a conundrum so that either way they aid and abet salvation being offered to all humanity.

Don't you just love it when God comes to play ball?

Posted by: Cheryl Va. Clough on Wednesday, 10 October 2007 at 8:57am BST

chaps - "ad hominem" attacks are not supposed to be allowed round here!

Posted by: NP on Wednesday, 10 October 2007 at 9:16am BST

You may want to be careful, NP. The bulk of your posts are little more than ad hominem attacks, what with your constant lie that anyone who disagrees with you is "ignoring scripture."

The pot doth lecture the kettle on its blackness.

Posted by: Malcolm+ on Wednesday, 10 October 2007 at 4:26pm BST

When Rhodesia declared UDI they declared loyalty to the Queen. After five years of being ignored they then became a Republic.

The " faithful remnant " seem to have the same attitude to Canterbury as the white Rhodesians had to the Queen.

They want to be in communion with a man who ordained active gays and graciously received Bishop robinson at Lambeth Palace, as the rightful Anglican bishop of New Hampshire.

Posted by: Robert Ian Williams on Wednesday, 10 October 2007 at 7:22pm BST

Malcolm - it is only people who want to misunderstand who can say condoning behaviour which is "incompatible with scripture" is not ignoring scripture.....

Robert - many in the CofE were against RW being made ABC by the current Labour government. You misunderstand if you think people are keen to be in communion with RW. Archbishops come and go, denominations also are not eternal but the word of God lives forever and so we pray and work for the church to stay faithful to the scriptures. What people care about is the CofE and the AC staying faithful to the scriptures.......this is much bigger than RW

Posted by: NP on Thursday, 11 October 2007 at 3:29pm BST

"the AC staying faithful to the scriptures"

I'd rather the Anglican Church stay faithful to the Gospel, actually.

Posted by: Ford Elms on Thursday, 11 October 2007 at 3:52pm BST

So, not only am I "ignoring scripture," but apparently I'm lying about it as well.

NP, you aren't the pope.

And even is your were, I wouldn't care.

It is now clear to me that you are not honest, and you are not prepared to engage with any integrity on this or any other issue. You stand convicted by your own arrogance and your own behaviour of being the troll others have suggested you are.

There is an honest conservative case to be made. It is unfortunate that so few of the screaming horde of "conservative" demagogues - NP included - are prepared to engage honestly.

Posted by: Malcolm+ on Thursday, 11 October 2007 at 6:19pm BST
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