Comments: ACNA: questions on a postcard

Yes BUT BUT BUT Actions have consequences. Perhaps those who squeeze Catholics out of the C of E and those who elect active homosexual bishops despite it being against the clear teaching of the Anglican church ought to ponder that?

You liberals want to have your cake and eat it! Breaking the rules when it suits (first women ordained in US etc) but not when it does not (as here)

Posted by Ed Tomlinson at Tuesday, 9 February 2010 at 11:03am GMT

I suggested the following addition to the Reverend Haller's P.C. Since the US legal system is important here, I might suggest here too:
" If you were the real ecclesiastical authority of the church and the now declared Sudanese priest assaulted a parishioner or abused a child would you be willing to accept legal responsibility for the torts of clergy over whom you have no control or would you take all the steps you could take to remove them from your rolls?" The "depositions" remove TEC from liability for rogue clergy over whom, they in fact, have no control

Posted by EmilyH at Tuesday, 9 February 2010 at 12:20pm GMT

Thank you, Fr. Tobias! These questions are excellent. They should do much to bring home to the rank-and-file General Synod members the situation the Episcopal Church has faced these past fifteen years and more without aid or assistance of any kind from the Church of England or its archbishops. Now that Reform and GAFCON threaten to do the same to the Church of England, a few are beginning to wake up. Well, good.

Posted by qu at Tuesday, 9 February 2010 at 1:48pm GMT

"Yes BUT BUT BUT Actions have consequences. Perhaps those who squeeze Catholics out of the C of E and those who elect active homosexual bishops despite it being against the clear teaching of the Anglican church ought to ponder that?

You liberals want to have your cake and eat it! Breaking the rules when it suits (first women ordained in US etc) but not when it does not (as here)"

Who is "forcing" anyone out? I don't recall locking the doors...or using baton-wielding cops to shove anyone through them. This constant repetition of the idea that ordaining women or gays is "forcing" anyone to do anything is ridiculous.

Oh, and Ed--for what must surely be the umpteenth time--there is no such entity as "the Anglican church" in a worldwide sense. There is the CoE, there is TEC, there is the Anglican Church of Canada, etc...national and regional churches, each autonomous and independent, sharing a certain history, and certain points of theology (but not all, I hasten to add), but each having its own distinct polity and ecclesiology.

You want a world-wide church with a single hierarchy, theology and polity? I direct you to Rome.

Posted by Pat O'Neill at Tuesday, 9 February 2010 at 10:40pm GMT

Ed Tomlinson wrote: "Perhaps those who squeeze Catholics out of the C of E and those who elect active homosexual bishops despite it being against the clear teaching of the Anglican church ought to ponder that?"

First of all, Ed, there is NO Anglican church. Try to say it again, there is NO Anglican church.

Second, it is your interpretation of scripture which contends that monogamous and committed homosexual relationships are immoral. It is my interpretation of scripture which says that such committed relationship, homosexual or heterosexual, are valid.

On the other hand, if you want to argue against licentious bed-hopping, whether homosexual or heterosexual, as something which is antithetical to being a good Christian, then I can support your statement.

Lastly, as an Anglo Catholic, though on the western side of the pond, I really doubt your unsubstantiated contention that the CofE is trying to "squeeze Catholics out."

Posted by Jerry Hannon at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 12:28am GMT

"On the other hand, if you want to argue against licentious bed-hopping, whether homosexual or heterosexual, as something which is antithetical to being a good Christian, then I can support your statement."

There seems to be a certain type of person on the religious right who seems unable, or unwilling, to see the question of same-sex relationships, no matter how monogamous, loving, and supportive, as anything other than a matter of sexual license.

Posted by BillyD at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 12:45am GMT

"Lastly, as an Anglo Catholic, though on the western side of the pond, I really doubt your unsubstantiated contention that the CofE is trying to "squeeze Catholics out." "

Sorry, I should have included this on my last comment.

If you read British Anglo-Catholic blogs and websites, it's fairly clear that they think that they have trademarked the word "Catholic." In their minds, when they leave the Anglican Communion that will be the end of Anglo-Catholicism. Or, since some of them object to the name "Anglo-Catholic" (go figure), "the Catholic movement in the Church of England."

Posted by BillyD at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 1:04am GMT

"You want a world-wide church with a single hierarchy, theology and polity? I direct you to Rome." - Pat O'Neill, on Tuesday -

The only trouble is, Pat, that Fr. Ed Tomlinson is not celibate - a requirement of the Roman Catholic Church for entry into the priesthood. Of course, Fr Tomlinson could always apply to the new Ordinariates, but he probably woudn't get a stipend. Although there are still paid hospital chaplaincies in the U.K.

A further thought for Ed Tomlinson, is that there are other Catholic clergy in the Anglican Communion besides those he represents in the C.of E. Many of us have acknowledged the ministry of women and gays in our Churches for decades now. That does not mean we have suborned or jettisoned our catholic faith or practice. It seems to me that his sort of 'Catholic' is more properly exclusive to the Roman Catholic Church - with which we Anglicans are not 'in Communion'.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 2:54am GMT

Oh, now, be nice folks!

If there's no "Anglican church" in a worldwide communion, then Eddie boy has no authority to go moaning and groaning when somebody does something that he personally doesn't like! I mean, instead of being clergy, he's just like everyone else!

Posted by MarkBrunson at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 6:01am GMT

Actually, Ed, the first woman was ordained in Hong Kong in the 40s, and the second and third were ordained in Hong Kong in the 70s. But don't let facts get in the way of a good rant, eh?

Posted by Malcolm+ at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 6:36am GMT

Ed
The whole point is that what were once established teachings of the various national churches in the Anglican Communion is changing. That's legitimate and happens in every single church in the world. Even Rome is no longer as it was when the first Bishop of Rome ruled the church. I would say that the doctrinal changes in Rome over the years are far more dramatic than anything that is happening here at the moment.
Just think that one day it was perfectly ok not to believe in the Assumption of Mary, the next day you were a heretic if you didn't believe it. Those are truly important issues.

If you take up Rome's offer to join, you will find yourself in a church that has far fewer discussions about any changes and allows far less dissent than any of the churches in the Anglican Communion.

I feel very sad that you find the current changes intolerable and I wish it could be different.
That does not mean they should not happen if the respective church has legitimately decided that they are valid.

Posted by Erika Baker at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 9:22am GMT

I think that Ed and his friends are going to get a very rude awakening the first time they give their new Roman bishop the thumb in the eye.

Posted by JPM at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 2:37pm GMT

"I feel very sad that you find the current changes intolerable and I wish it could be different.
That does not mean they should not happen if the respective church has legitimately decided that they are valid."

Yes, Erika. But two questions: (1) What would be the harm of the CofE providing something like the present flying bishops scheme for those who cannot accept a female bishop? I think the original scheme was a mistake, but can't see what harm would accrue from giving people like Fr. T more breathing space. (2 - although this is really something that those from Fr T's camp can answer) Why did obstructionists adopt the motto "A code of conduct is not enough"? What does that mean, and why is such a code not enough?

Posted by BillyD at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 3:53pm GMT

Dear Fr. Tomlinson,

Your rejoinder appears to me to miss the mark on three counts.

1) As far as I know Catholics are not being squeezed out of the Church of England any more than they have been squeezed out in the Episcopal Church. That people choose to leave the church when they can no longer abide by its Discipline, must take responsibility for their conscientious actions.

2) Others here have cited the nonexistence of the "clear teaching of the Anglican church"; and I think it good to recall that even Lambeth 1998.1.10 found at most that it "cannot advise the legitimising or blessing of same sex unions nor ordaining those involved in same gender unions;" which a fair reading should admit stops a good deal short of a prohibition! A resolution worded more strongly would likely have failed of adoption.

3) Finally, as to the first women purportedly ordained in TEC: Though reaction to the "Philadelphia 11" has been downplayed, and has largely been forgotten, the women in question were declared by the House of Bishops not to have been ordained because ordination is not the act of a private person or group of persons, but the work of the church, and the absence of proper ecclesiastical consent meant that the "conditions necessary for ordination" were not present. Once the ordination of women became possible, the women in question were instructed to undergo conditional ordination, and unless I'm mistaken all but one of them did so.

Posted by Tobias Haller at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 4:07pm GMT

Billy
I have no particular view about flying bishops, although I think the scheme would become fiendlishly complicated if FiF not only refuse male priests ordained by female bishops, but even male priests ordained by male bishops who have ordained women priests. It creates a very tight church within a church and you kind of wonder what they 2 groups would still share and what the theology behind it all could be.

But the point I was making is a different one. Ed is a priest in a church with a certain and transparent decisison making process and structure. Through the appropriate channels it has now, apparently, been decided not to make any of the concessions FiF have been asking for.

Now, you can say that you don't agree with it, that you are upset by it, that you feel you have to make certain personal responses to it.
But what you can't do is shout that it's an illegitimate process, or that anyone is actually throwing you out.

What I really really don't like are people who are fine with the decision making structures of their church while the decisions go in their favour and who expect the rest of us to abide by them without complaining, but who then cry foul when they happen not to like the decisions.

Posted by Erika Baker at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 9:45pm GMT

"But what you can't do is shout that it's an illegitimate process, or that anyone is actually throwing you out."

Agreed.

Posted by BillyD at Wednesday, 10 February 2010 at 11:59pm GMT

Erika, spot on. Unfortunately the same thing happens with Biblical interpretation: if the mechanism produces results you don't like.

Posted by Tobias Haller at Thursday, 11 February 2010 at 3:01pm GMT
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