Comments: Is Dallas seeking any other primatial oversight?

The "separation is never a strategy" quote is taken from the address available in full here:
http://bishop.jmstanton.com/061024_Address_Pursuing_God's_Future.htm

Posted by badman at Thursday, 26 October 2006 at 11:37am BST

The following is a comment from a resident of the Diocese of Dallas seen on the (odious) "Virtue" Online website:

"Being with one of the parishes 'on the way out' there is one fact to consider - Jim Stanton has never asked for alternative primatial oversight. Rather he requested a direct pastoral relationship with the ABC. So this fact would account for the wording in the Diocese of Pittsburg news release."

Posted by David Huff at Thursday, 26 October 2006 at 4:50pm BST

I had already seen the ENS article. It sounds like there is not such unity in Dallas as has been implied about, say, San Joaquin or Fort Worth. This story, along with news from the diocesan convention of the Diocese of the Rio Grande, suggest that at least some conservative bishops are responsive to differing voices. It may not change the course of the next generation, but it's a nice change for the time being.

Posted by Marshall Scott at Thursday, 26 October 2006 at 6:30pm BST

I think there are a lot of souls deliberating and networking behind the scenes. The next Lambeth Conference is going to be interesting. It is going to be hard to be fully informed or aware of what is happening because a lot is being done behind the scenes, and there continues to be a lot of deliberate refusal to enter into some debates.

Some examples are these articles linked from Australia's Victorian Anglican website this week:
http://www.news.com.au/couriermail/story/0,,20639440-1242,00.html?from=rss
http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/anglican-rift-leads-dissenters-to-jensen/2006/10/23/1161455665468.html
http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2006/s1771777.htm

Apparently God stopped moving after Jesus' earlier resurrection encounters. Events such as SE Asian Tsunami, Nias, Katrina, Wilma/Alpha/Noreaster & Pakistani earthquake are meaningless. And Jesus words don't count for much either e.g. Luke 24:44 “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”

Posted by Cheryl Clough at Friday, 27 October 2006 at 12:35am BST

What is true of Dallas is true of the Diocese of Central Florida. There is no such unity here, either.

As to the probable consequences of the requests for APO: it is worthwhile to read Matt Kennedy's article "Ecclesiology: The Achilles Heel of Orthodox Anglicanism?" at

http://www.standfirminfaith.com/index.php/site/article/1356/

Fr. Kennedy argues that connections with Canterbury are not essential:

"[T]he idea of breaking with an historic see or with a province or bishop tied to an historic see cuts to the very heart of what has traditionally divided Reformed/evangelical Anglicans and Anglo-catholics.

"There seem to be four basic opinions on this matter.[...]

[group] 2. Some argue that the Communion tie to Canterbury is a fundamental mark of catholicity. So long as the Episcopal Church is bound to and in communion with Canterbury breaking from her is unthinkable.

[...]

[group]4. Still others ... dispute the validity of any episcopal authority, any ecclesial entity, that has ceased to proclaim the gospel. Heretic bishops are not truly bishops and an apostate church is no church at all. For this last category, the office of bishop is primarily functional. Apostolic succession is a matter of maintaining and proclaiming the apostolic witness as recorded in the Old and New Testaments.

[...]

Personally speaking, in 2003 I would have placed myself in group 2. Now I am leaning heavily toward group 4."

Posted by Charlotte at Friday, 27 October 2006 at 2:28am BST

I had the opportunity to hear Bishop Stanton speak to the Vestry at our progressive church in August. He went out of his way to say how he had been misunderstood concerning Bishop Jefferts-Schori, and that he was not asking for Alternative Primatial Oversight but rather a direct relationship with the ABC. I asked him whether there would be any difference in the relationship with Bishop Jefferts-Schori than with previous Presiding Bishops. He said no.

Yet that doesn't seem quite right. He seems to want something besides the normal relationship with the PB, and it is not clear at all that he shows both Bishop Schori and her office the respect they are due. At a minimum he is equivocating, and seems to continue his practice of doublespeak, trying to have it all ways at all times. I hope someone can challenge him on specific duties of the Presiding Bishop, and make him commit whether he will submit to the PB's authority or not.

I also hope Bishop Schori will come to Dallas personally to show support for those of us who are faithful and beleaguered Episcopalians.

Posted by Bob at Friday, 27 October 2006 at 2:33pm BST

I've slept on this whole issue, spoken to some friends both lay & clergy, and think I've come to grips with it this way:

As mentioned, Bp. Stanton never did specifically ask for "AlPO," but rather for a "direct primatial relationship" with the ABC. This leads me to conclude several things:

1) It accounts for the wording in Bp. Duncan's recent posting on the Pittsburgh website.

2) It allows Bp. Stanton to spin things like he did to the people of Ascension as a moderate, mainstream parish in our "Network" diocese.

3) It avoids the problematic concept of "AlPO," which doesn't exist in TEC's Constitution & Canons, and yet...

4) It also allows him to present himself as aligned with "Anglicanism" vs. that horrid, apostate Episcopal Church when he talks to conservative parishes in the diocese.

So, with a rather heavy heart, I've decided that it's all just spin, and that neither the Bishop's heart nor anything else here has really changed. And yes, Marshall is correct - not much unity around here. A situation familiar to any mainstream Episcoipalians who find themselves in a self-proclaimed "Network" diocese...

Posted by David Huff at Friday, 27 October 2006 at 3:30pm BST
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