Friday, 12 December 2008

church press covers ACNA

Revised on 19 December

The Church of England Newspaper has this article by George Conger Canterbury won’t block or bless new province:

The Archbishop of Canterbury will not block the creation of a third Anglican province in North America, sources familiar with Dr. Rowan Williams’ Dec 5 meeting with five traditionalist archbishops, tell The Church of England Newspaper.

However, the archbishop will not give it his endorsement either, arguing his office does not have the legal authority to make, or un-make, Anglicans.

On Dec 5, five members of the Gafcon primates council: Archbishops Benjamin Nzimbi of Kenya, Peter Akinola of Nigeria, Emmanuel Kolini of Rwanda, Gregory Venables of the Southern Cone, and Henry Orombi of Uganda met with Dr. Williams in Canterbury for approximately five hours to discuss the current state of affairs within the Communion…

The Church Times has this article by Pat Ashworth New Anglican province comes into being in US together with a sidebar, Members of the Group (scroll down below the main article for this):

SOME members of the new Church began breaking away before the present crisis. One ACNA partner, the Reformed Episcopal Church (REC), split from the Episcopal Church in the United States as long ago as 1873. The Anglican Mission in the Americas (AMiA), affiliated to Rwanda, was, in 2000, already moving towards establishing a separate province, after the irregular consecrations of Bishop John Rodgers and Bishop Chuck Murphy in Singapore. The AMiA had 23 parishes in 2000. Now it says it has 140, including 12 in Canada (who are members of the Anglican Coalition in Canada, its subsidiary)…

The Church Times also has an article by Bishop Duncan on its Comment pages, which is at present only now available to subscribers. This makes it harder possible to appreciate the Leader article A new Church in the United States which says:

WHETHER it is viewed with sympathy or suspicion, there is no doubt that the new Anglican Church in North America changes the Anglican map. To be more accurate, it lays a new map (a relief map, perhaps?) on top of the old one, so that in his otherwise factual article (See Comment ) the new Archbishop, the Most Revd Bob Duncan, can say artlessly that the charge of boundary-crossing, condemned by the Windsor report, “is most effectively and completely addressed by general acceptance of the new province”. Although territorial confusion matters less where a church is defined more by congregational membership than place of abode, the parish ideal is none the less strong…

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 9:52am GMT | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Anglican Communion
Comments

I deeply value the analysis here, however, does anyone other than a purported 'new province' member or a journalist actually care about this 'province'? On a wet night in Australia where the papers are full of headlines about cholera in Zimbabwe, and where I regret more and more the loss of David Beetge as a bishop who might do something about it, nothing seems less relevant or meaningful.

Posted by: MrsBarlow on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 12:24pm GMT

Mrs Barlow wrote: #I deeply value the analysis here, however, does anyone other than a purported 'new province' member or a journalist actually care about this 'province'?"

George Conger in not chiefly a neutral journalist in this, reporting on something "happening" on its own, but one of the prime campaigners, a mover and a member of the purported "new province". I find it strange that people haven't noticed.

Posted by: Göran Koch-Swahne on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 3:20pm GMT

George Conger can speak for himself, but let me jump in and say that as he is a priest of the Central Florida diocese, he is not even in a Network diocese, any more, let alone a member of the new province.

Posted by: Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 6:33pm GMT

While I have questioned George Congers journalistic professionalism, and even his honesty, I can't agree with calling him a campaigner in this. But he isn't a neutral journalist, either.

He is most accurately described as a journalist with a bias. Most "beat reporters" have a bias. The issue is whether or not their reporting is fair (not the same as balanced) despite their bias. George often fails that test, IMHO.

Of course, the only neutral journalist is one who is covering a story where he has no idea what anyone is talking about. Such journalists are all too common.

Posted by: Malcolm+ on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 7:56pm GMT

The believers most impressed with Duncan and Company edging into this new virtual province are mainly those directly involved. From the little I know, Duncan has always pretty much been highly impressed with himself, especially compared to queer folks and others over which he probably perceives his own towering superiorities.

Rowan's hands off approach may prove to be wise in the longest run - I believe Proverbs counsels us not to grab barking dogs by the ears too quickly lest the animal turn on us. Or Rowan may simply yet again be aiding and abetting those whose faith witness heavily depends on trash talking all those whom such conservatives find ungodly and outside their new fangled purist small tent Anglicanisms.

Oddly enough, change continues to pop up in the least probable sectors, as in the latest news that, goodness sakes, a prominent evangelical USA leader has admitted that he is probably changing his own mind about queer folks. Imagine that ... see: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/12/12/top-evangelical-resigns-a_n_150516.html

Just when this new province is going to be so loud and so proud that it does not ever under any circumstances rub shoulders with queer folks - most especially African or other Global South nation queer folks. Duncan is a wobbly sort of dinosaur desposed bishop, unable to cogently think through the empirical data and other best practices inquiry shifts that have helped to blot out the steady sunlight of his exclusively straight privileges and powers used to meanly target all his fav suspects.

Addressing Zimbabwe and similar tragedies gone global is much, much, much more important for Anglican believers than this new conservatives-only province hoo-ha.

Posted by: drdanfee on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 9:35pm GMT

'The Rt Revd Martyn Minns, a bishop for the Convocation of Anglicans in North America, told the paper: “One of the questions a number of the Primates are asking is, why do we still need to be opera­ting under the rules of an English charity, which is what the ACC does? Why is England still considered the centre of the universe?” ' - Pat Ashworth, Church Times -

So that is how Bishop Minns, a former member, summarises the work and outreach of the historic Church of England, in it's continuing connection with the family of constituent Provinces around the world? Hardly an inspirational view of the Anglican ethos, one would suspect. And yet this faux bishop in the newly-proposed 39th Province seemingly wants his fellow re-Asserters to be accounted part of the Communion. It just makes no sense at all.

Perhaps, in his denigration of the ancient Primacy of Canterbury, he now wants to appear to pre-empt any possible rejection of the claims of his fellow dissenters to remain within the family of the Communion. This may be, for him, a better course than to expect - as does Primate-Elect Robert Duncan - the ACC and the majority of the Primates to allow the new 'province' entry.

Their cavalier treatment of the Anglican Churches' Intruments of Unity and their ambitious demands to be recognised as part of the Anglican Communion, ought to be recognised for what they really are: A plan to set up the new 'province' as the only 'Orthodox' limb of the Body of Christ in Anglicanism. Will the ACC fall for this, one wonders? And how will this affect TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada?

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Friday, 12 December 2008 at 10:54pm GMT

If you ever needed a reason to avoid GAFCON like the plague, here's one. The Anglican Wanderings blog - http://anglicanwanderings.blogspot.com/2008/11/if-you-think-this-is-future-look-away.html - has pointed out that the 'loony left' of the Anglican 'continuum' (you know, more bishops than laity) are now signing up - like those churches comprising the Anglican Independent Communion, which states on its website:


"The Global Anglican Conference (GAFCON) has now formally established the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (FCA) and with that news from the Archbishop of Sydney, Dr Peter Jensen of the Church of Australia who will head-up the International Secretariat of FCA, has come the news we have been waiting for:-

The UK Province of the Anglican Independent Communion will be admitted into membership of FCA

This is indeed good news and we will be joining the largest body of Anglicans in the world as equals in the service of Christ.

But what will it mean for us? The answer is simple. As a constituent part of FCA we will work towards two goals. Firstly, defend the gospel and the people of God against their spiritual adversaries, notably the liberal theology which has become so prevalent in the West; and Secondly, provide aid to those faithful Anglicans who have been forced to disaffiliate from their original spiritual homes by false teaching and practice. Does that not sound a bit like the AIC !!!?

This is a whole new beginning for the Anglican faith and there will be many within the existing ‘Anglican Communion’, not least of all our State Church here in England, who will be most uneasy about the situation. It is likely that the AICUK, simply because of our geographical position, will be called upon to do much. Exactly what is soon to be worked out but we must brace ourselves for what may very well be a great struggle and challenge ahead, both here and throughout the world. The Lord is bringing together a great army for the fight ahead."

http://ukaic.org.uk/index.php/News/Latest/GAFCON-FCA-and-UKAIC.html


In August they had written to +Akinola about signing up:

"In so much as GAFCon’s declaration and statement accord exactly with the position of the AIC, Archbishop John has written directly to the acting Primate of GAFCon (Archbishop Peter Akinola, Primate of the Church of Nigeria) extending our greetings, congratulations and offering our fellowship and support to GAFCon. Archbishop Peter’s reply is awaited."

http://ukaic.org.uk/index.php/News/Latest/AICUK-Reaches-out-to-GAFCon.html

I guess his answer was in the affirmative.

Posted by: MJ on Saturday, 13 December 2008 at 11:55am GMT

"Firstly, defend the gospel and the people of God against their spiritual adversaries, notably the liberal theology which has become so prevalent in the West; and Secondly, provide aid to those faithful Anglicans who have been forced to disaffiliate from their original spiritual homes by false teaching and practice."

Oh for God's sake! Could they be any more persecuted?

Posted by: Ford Elms on Saturday, 13 December 2008 at 3:18pm GMT

“If you ever needed a reason to avoid GAFCON like the plague, here's one. The Anglican Wanderings blog - http://anglicanwanderings.blogspot.com/2008/11/if-you-think-this-is-future-look-away.html - has pointed out that the 'loony left' of the Anglican 'continuum' (you know, more bishops than laity) are now signing up - like those churches comprising the Anglican Independent Communion, which states on its website.” MJ

It looks more like the “whacky right” to me.

Posted by: Kurt on Saturday, 13 December 2008 at 5:14pm GMT

This is a good one from the Ang. Indep. Comm:

"Venerable Rev Dr Canon Jack Skelton-Wallace, BA (Dual Hons), MA, PhD, FRGS, FCollP, PGCE, Cert TESOL (Trinity Coll., London)"

http://ukaic.org.uk/

Posted by: Rob on Sunday, 14 December 2008 at 2:43am GMT

Why just stop at a new Anglican province?
Why not start a whole new Anglican Communion?

http://www.liturgy.co.nz/blog/true-anglican-communion/246

Posted by: Phineas Angus Rody on Sunday, 14 December 2008 at 3:11am GMT

Fr. Ron,
The quote from Bishop Minns that you highlight shows an apparent division in ACNA that has yet to come to the forefront.

Akinola and his mouthpiece Minns (or is it the other way around?) have both repeatedly stated that they don't necessarily see Canterbury as the sine qua non of the Anglican Communion, and indeed the CoN dropped reference to Canterbury from its constitution. Akinola seems quite happy to strike out on his own if the rest of the AC will not follow him.

Duncan, Venables and a good number of others see Canterbury as central, and they are much more concerned about remaining in communion with Canterbury and being the "legitimate" Anglican franchise in North America, and indeed much of their litigation strategy depends on that.

How long will the alliance hold together?

Posted by: Jim Pratt on Sunday, 14 December 2008 at 5:48pm GMT

Thank you, Jim, for your observation on the prospective dichotomy already operating within the establishment of the new ACNA Province.

It seems to me that there is now a distinct possibility that there may be in-fighting between Minns/Akinola and prospective Primate Bob Duncan on who is actually 'in charge' of the new 'Church of the Elect' in North America - local former Episcopalians, or the African & South American sponsors of their politics of disaffection?

Could it be, do you think, that with Canterbury's the majority of the Anglican Primates', and the ACC's reluctance to grant *persona grata* status in the Communion to the proposed new 'province', that Akinola will take charge of the whole process and declare himself 'Primus Assoluta' of a newly-created 'Exarchate of the once-Anglican Ecclesia of the Totally Sinless Throughout the World'? (Another acronym - EAETSTW)

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Sunday, 14 December 2008 at 10:49pm GMT
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