Thursday, 24 June 2010

Catholic Group in synod responds to archbishops

PRESS STATEMENT

From the Catholic Group in General Synod

Responding to the statement of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York Re. forthcoming women bishops debates

The Catholic Group in General Synod is grateful to the Archbishops for their suggestion of a possible way forward for the Church of England, both to enable the consecration of women bishops and to provide for those who cannot in conscience accept the ministry of women bishops. We are particularly grateful for their recognition of the need for bishops with jurisdiction in their own right to minister to us, and to all those who share our convictions.

We look forward to studying the amendments in detail when they are published. We very much hope that they will provide ‘nominated bishops’ who will be real leaders in mission and ministry. It is also be vital that the amendments provide for us to continue to hold a principled theological position, looking to the faith and order of the undivided Church. We believe that the Church will be better served by the consistency of a national scheme of provision.

The Catholic Group is wholly committed to securing provision within the Church of England.

Canon Simon Killwick

(Chairman of the Catholic Group)

As reported by Anglican Mainstream.

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Comments

I do hope 'Affirming Catholics' will also write to the Archbishops - while at the same time voicing protest at the use of the ambiguous term: 'THE CATHOLIC group in General Synod' - if only to remind F.i.F. people that they won't be the only Catholic Group in General Synod. This is a rather deceitful way of inferring that all A/Cs are anti-women's Ordination - which is not true.

Mind you, does Rowan know that? Or does he really believe that ALL Anglo-Catholics are against the idea of Women as equally capable of being called by The Lord of The Church into Holy Orders in the Church of England. To go ahead with two orders of diocesan bishops is divisive and un-catholic - not at all what catholic order is all about.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 9:50am BST

I think Affirming Catholicism might get heard a little better if it first explained what 'Catholicism' it affirms given that they support all that leads AWAY from Rome and Constantinople and the teaching of the church down the ages.

Most are now honest enough to admit that the real cause is liberalism and that many members are only Catholic in as much as they wear a stole. Others do enjoy the full ceremonial which seems really odd without the doctrine.

If many refer to the Catholics as those embracing Catholic teaching do not be surprised. You might ponder why you have to SHOUT to convince others of your credentials

Posted by: Ed Tomlinson on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 11:38am BST

'The Catholic Group' is just a name given to a particular group of like-minded members of Synod who represent organisations like FiF. It's really not intended to be deceitful. I imagine it's a name that's been used for a long time, well before the ordination of women. And yes, I think +Rowan does get the difference between the different sides of Anglo-Catholicism...

Posted by: Nick Lincoln on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 12:46pm BST

Fr Ron you are on the ball again! Using words that do not belong to them is their trade mark. Affirming Catholics are at the heart of Anglicanism, and the Church of England. Its time these so called cathololics were told to either get on their bikes and ride to Rome or shut up. Remember how many of them in the last journey to Rome, having taken the cash, quietly re turned home to the Church of England. There can be only one Diocesan Bishop the centre of Unity in Faith and Mission in the diocese.

Fr John (Scotland)

Posted by: Fr John on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 12:56pm BST

The answer is that far, far, far less returned than remained within Rome. what is your point?

Posted by: Ed Tomlinson on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 3:50pm BST

Ed T: "Most are now honest enough to admit that the real cause is liberalism and that many members are only Catholic in as much as they wear a stole. Others do enjoy the full ceremonial which seems really odd without the doctrine."

Why do you need to knock those of us who are Catholic but do not entertain your prejudices against women clergy? Without what doctrine exactly? Most European Roman Catholics, including clergy, approve of the ordination of women http://viaintegra.wordpress.com/women-priests-in-europe/ Do you also lose no opportunity to insult Roman Catholics by telling them they are not really Catholic if they happen to think that women should be ordained?

Some Catholics oppose women's ordination; many do not, in both communions. The Vatican's top-down line does not represent the sensus fidelium on the issue in the RC Church, as with other questions of gender and sexuality. You seem to exhibit a very fragile and narrow sense of what Catholicism is all about in comments such as this one, coupled with a naive view of the Roman Church.

Posted by: Fr Mark on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 4:27pm BST

Hmm, perhaps, part of the point is that antiwomen AngCaths are persistent in their efforts to collapse the big tents upon which Anglican church life was clearly founded. They will insist - usually in holier than thou tones of voice - that we all have to relive the pertinent religious wars in hopes of getting yet another grip on how to re-invent the Elizabethan Settlement - (alas, how typical, just like some woman to come up with that?) - consistent with our varied times, places, persons. Above all, common prayer across differences is intentionally meant to be rendered vexed and difficult, if not definitively impossible.

Decodes? Term, undivided church - decodes into meaing, the uniform church which has been policed and punished into excluding anybody who doesn't think women are subordinate to and always and ever beholden to, men, from birth to death ... perhaps beyond, if the literalist readings of God the Father are tightly held. Flat earth doctrines about sex, gender, sexual orientation, human personality, and any number of empirical dimensions of real embodiment are gleefully trumped by legacy doctrines (often derived from a self-serving, closed, circular appropriation of medieval and patristic era thinking?), full stop?

Term, real leaders in mission/ministry - decodes into meaning, men who always are better than and lording it all over, any women in daily life or in church life with whom they could possibly be associated, the key point being to be so lordly and male as one's sacred legacy in God's name. If the males first-males only complaints be credited, this ensemble is apparently so fierce yet so fragile that nearly any sort of competent woman in church life is anathema, as if she could topple, dirty, and shake such eternal truth, seriously, just by being - well? - competent and a woman at the very same time in one body and one life cycle.

Term principled theological position - decodes into a rich variety of interconnected negative presuppositions and ideas (which often collapse distinct modern empirical data about sex, gender, sexual orientation, and human embodiment, into one blended traditionalist whole that just happens to ignore, distort, and deny far too many of the known data specifics?)- theological denoting that all of this mean business is carried out as essential to being holy and being male, period.

Ah, hmmm ... no thanks? Lord have mercy.

Posted by: drdanfee on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 6:11pm BST

If the Church of England creates women Bishops why can't A/Cs just accept that is the kind of Church it is? To believe that we have women Bishops, whilst believing - within the same Church - that we do not, is utterly ridiculous. Obviously, one hopes Fr Tomlinson will be happy in communion with the Holy Father. I cannot see how we are moving AWAY from Rome when it is inevitable that one day they will move TOWARDS us. In the meantime, the Pope has made a kind offer to those A/Cs whose bluff has been called. Why does FiF not simply move to a Church which does NOT have women Bishops, instead of staying in one which partly might. And partly might not?

Posted by: Rev Sidney Jensen on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 7:19pm BST

"The Vatican's top-down line does not represent the sensus fidelium on the issue in the RC Church"

Hear, hear, FrMark.

Sadly, this is true of the AC as well. The ABC and his flunkies (not to mention many loud-mouth primates---some of whom, frankly, have LGBT blood on their hands!) fulminate re "the mind of the Communion".

The reality is that there is NO "mind of the Communion" . . . only many *minds* within (more or less) the AC, whom are Not Agreed.

Why do hierarchs try to FORCE a uniformity (all too often, calling it divine) that doesn't really exist? [I guess to ask, is to answer, Alas. Hierarchs = Force, NOT "Servant(s) of the Servants of God"]

Posted by: JCF on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 7:45pm BST

'Others do enjoy the full ceremonial which seems really odd without the doctrine.' Thurs 24 June.

You said it ! Well the Book of Common Prayer is certainly free of that sort of 'doctrine'.It was a Protestant compilation,in its day, explicitly designed to exclude the sort of 'doctrine' that smacks of (or leads towards Rome.) Historians of Church History and of Liturgy are agreed - notwithstanding Newman's famous / infamous Tract!

The oxymoronicly named 'Catholic Group' (Splinter Group ? / Universal Seg(ment) wants to avoid bishops who happen to be women, so that it can continue to make-believe that it is already (Roman) Catholic. But no-one is convinced by these least of all the Romans themselves.

They are happy to exist in an Erastian Church under the authority of a Protestant Queen. (Yes, I know they prefer their queens to be Catholic, but they evidently have no problem making an exception for (and of ?) Her Majesty !


Posted by: Pantycelyn on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 10:03pm BST

I am happy being a liberal protestant minister. Though the 'prot' bit I feel pushed to mentioning it, as so denied here. It's not a word I love, or feel will take us far into this century, but it is an important reminder of our history and of the need for intellectual and spiritual and social vigilance, in fact semper reformanda.E.g. No challenge or even initial critique of the new Government coming from the Churches ?

I think the various Reports of the Doctrine Commission from 1948 onwards make clear the wide range / spectrum of belief among C of E members and especially the clergy.

Btw It is very striking that the Doctrine Commission is being abolished -- oops subsumed in Rowan's new body.

Posted by: Pantycelyn on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 10:12pm BST

"In the meantime, the Pope has made a kind offer to those A/Cs whose bluff has been called. Why does FiF not simply move to a Church which does NOT have women Bishops, instead of staying in one which partly might. And partly might not?"

- Posted by: Rev Sidney Jensen on Thursday -

Well said, Sydney. As you rightly say, the Pope is offering Ed Tomlinson and his 'Catholic group' the way out of his dilemma. He and they are free at any time to bow to their own tender consciences - by continuing to pretend they are still 'Catholic Anglicans' in their own little enclave, while yet submitting to the authority of the 'Holy Father'.

To continue representing themselves as the only Catholics within the Church of England, is not only a travesty, it is also a problem for the Roman Catholic bishops who will have to rein them in when they get into the Ordinariates - without stipends and comfortable residences. Oh, and yes, their own Church buildings,

'Bye, Ed, it's been good to know you - and to know that you will soon be safe in the arms of The Holy Father - even though he does not recognize your 'catholic orders' as an Anglican. Let's all just hope that your faith in your own catholicity is not in any way destroyed by the experience.

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Thursday, 24 June 2010 at 11:01pm BST

The consistent answer to Rev. Sidney Jensen's question from these so-called "orthodox" anglicans is "Why should *I* have to leave *my* church?!"

That pretty much sums up the entire anti-WO side of things, in my experience, especially where the clergy are concerned. Their conscience and devotion to an ephemeral "faith once delivered" ends at losing pensions, or having to make painful sacrifices about vocation, or . . . even just doing things differently. I suspect there is also a good deal of realization that, along the Roman model, the first time they complain, they'll be put down quickly and effectively.

Posted by: MarkBrunson on Friday, 25 June 2010 at 8:18am BST

It is an unfortunate fact that the word 'Catholic' like the word 'Christian' has been hijacked by a narrow sect who do not represent the majority of those who formerly used the word. Both words have become debased by this hijacking and become associated with narrow minded, legalistic and controlling individuals and groups who seek to narrow and impoverish the true meaning of both words.

Posted by: Richard Ashby on Friday, 25 June 2010 at 11:23am BST

Clearly "Catholicism" is bigger than its narrow, ultra-conservative definition. Striving for unity is one thing, but if communion with Rome is the only true way to be Catholic, then the Catholic movement in the Church of England has been worthless.

The C of E has to understand that to introduce women bishops AND appease the minority who cannot accept them is impossible. To do so takes Anglican compromise to nonsensical extremes. It should therefore move forward with honesty and integrity. For those Anglo-Catholics and others who cannot accept these developments, the only option, sadly, is to move to Rome or elsewhere.

To Ed's credit, he is prepared to make the personal sacrifices that the move will involve. Whether his congregation will follow remains to be seen. I am not convinced that cutting people and church building as bleeding chunks from the C of E is a good idea.

Posted by: Rod on Friday, 25 June 2010 at 11:58am BST

'Clearly "Catholicism" is bigger than its narrow, ultra-conservative definition. Striving for unity is one thing, but if communion with Rome is the only true way to be Catholic, then the Catholic movement in the Church of England has been worthless.'

Well, ditto the Evangelical and Liberal 'movements' in the C of E ! Just I shall not surrender the term 'Catholic' to the RC establishment, nor will I concede it to High church men, either. It is our birthright (cf the Creeds, & formularies) and is of importance to others in the C of E.

Being Protestant does not stop one being Catholic - au contraire.

Posted by: Pantycelyn on Friday, 25 June 2010 at 4:54pm BST

"I cannot see how we are moving AWAY from Rome when it is inevitable that one day they will move TOWARDS us."

This, Sidney, is where the Popoids (wherever they currently park their birettas) go "La-la-la-la-la-la! I can't hear you! La-la-la-la-la-la!"

To quote (and then paraphrase) The Victorian Lady re the Theory of Evolution: "Heavens! Let us pray it isn't true. And if it IS true, let us pray it does not become widely-known . . . and if it DOES become widely known, let us pray we die BEFORE it takes effect!" ;-/

Posted by: JCF on Friday, 25 June 2010 at 6:38pm BST

"Others do enjoy the full ceremonial which seems really odd without the doctrine."

If the male priesthood and the heretical soteriology it rests upon are the sum total of the Catholic Faith to the likes of Fr Ed, then count me out. I'm happy to be a "Protestant" who affirms the Sacrifice of the Mass, purgatory, the Assumption of Our Lady, and all seven sacraments - for all the baptised. (I am still waiting for an explanation of how someone whose understanding of the Mass is more or less gleaned from the Catechism of Trent cannot be a "Catholic" unless he swallows the nonsensical notion that a penis is somehow necessary to its successful execution).

Posted by: Geoff on Saturday, 26 June 2010 at 1:12am BST

"Others do enjoy the full ceremonial which seems really odd without the doctrine."

Well, if your 'doctrine' includes the fallacial argument that God can only work through the ministry of a male priest to bring forth the Body and blood of Christ in the Eucharist, you are welcome to it. It is simply not the 'catholic' doctrine many of us Anglo-Catholics aspire to. Also, if the 'full ceremonial' is part of one's worship practice - without the understanding that Christ was representatively (fully) human - then it may be of little worth to Christ - who died for all people. (In Christ there is neither male nor female.)

Posted by: Father Ron Smith on Saturday, 26 June 2010 at 10:33pm BST

I'm starting to think the Anglo-Catholic tradition (which formed me) is now doing more harm than good.

Posted by: Pantycelyn on Sunday, 27 June 2010 at 1:09pm BST

'I think Affirming Catholicism might get heard a little better if it first explained what 'Catholicism' it affirms given that they support all that leads AWAY from Rome and Constantinople and the teaching of the church down the ages.'

I wish Ed and FiF could explain what 'Catholicism' they have in a Protestant Church with official protestant teaching (cf the formularies, liturgies and Doctrine Commission reports of the Church of ENGLAND). Yes, I know the most extreme Anglo-Catholic churches use the RC Liturgy and Calendar (or should that be Kalendar ?), including the Feast of the Chair of St Peter.

So this teaching is not Anglican, and their Orders are not recognised by the RC authorities. I ususually lay off this and accept as part of our strange richness ~! But I must speak up when this very party wishes to hold back the C of E and women's ministry on such 'specialist' grounds. I have no wish to be unkind to Anglo-Catholics, and recognise all religion is irrational and in some sense arbitrary including my own (account of it).

Our Catholic basis does not rest on aping Rome but on our Creeds and Prayer. Protestant is not the opposite of Catholic.

Posted by: Pantycelyn on Sunday, 27 June 2010 at 7:30pm BST

Moreover, can FiF explain how it reconciles its catholicity with being catered to by provincial episcopi vagantes, raised up from a sect within a church to a ministry as "confirming Sams"?

Posted by: Geoff on Sunday, 27 June 2010 at 9:07pm BST

I think Pantycelyn has something important to say when he says being Protestant does not stop one being Catholic. For all the unacceptable flaws of the CofE seeming to add as a matter of essential doctrine the ordination of women, the RC church will not even discuss the matter - and this seems to me to be in blatant disregard of what the Spirit is saying to the Churches.

Posted by: Neil on Sunday, 27 June 2010 at 11:58pm BST
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