Thinking Anglicans

more on the Ugley Puritans

Several stories relating to this protest against writing letters to The Times:

Gladwin faces Ugley scenes over gays is the headline over the story in the Church Times (not on the public website yet), which says in part:

One of the clergy’s number, the Revd John Richardson, Assistant Curate of Henham, and Elsenham with Ugley, said on Tuesday: “He cannot be in sacramental fellowship with us and Churches in North America at the same time.”

…The Chelmsford group insists that, by opting for sacramental fellowship with those “who have gone against mainstream Anglicanism”, Bishop Gladwin has opted out of sacramental fellowship with others in his diocese.

…The group’s concern was not to add numbers to its list, but to make a point, he said.

Meanwhile Andrew Brown writes in the weekly Church Times Press column (also not on the public website) that:

ANOTHER EXAMPLE of a story that was made by its timing came in Saturday’s Telegraph, where the parish of Elsenham, Henham and Ugley in Essex announced that it was out of communion with the Bishop of Chelmsford because he had signed a letter to The Times in support of the North American Churches.

Again, this should have been a non-story. The benefice has made the papers before for throwing a yoga class out of the parish hall for a while (the class finally settled in Ugley village hall, which is controlled by a churchwarden of the neighbouring benefice); and for witholding its quota for a while in protest against the diocese’s interfaith policy. This stirring announcement, then, shouldn’t have been aroused too much excitement.

But, to journalists who are coming to believe that the Church of England as we have known it is doomed, and that a fractious congregationalism is the inevitable future, these gestures matter.

The CEN has Bishop rebukes opponents over Communion debate

The Guardian has Bishop hits back over gay row

And the GetReligion blog has Broken Communion story rolls on — in England.
while Fr Jake has Table Fellowship; the New Weapon

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Prior AelredMark Diebel Recent comment authors
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Mark Diebel
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My bishop, the bishop of Albany, (NY USA), is in communion with me… a dean (rural)… known by him not to support his thinking regarding NH and the Newtork. And he is in communion, as far as I know, with all parishes in his jurisdiction… not just those that concur with him. I suppose then that the Ugley puritans are in communion with the network dioceses… which means that they are in communion with people like the bishop who are in communion with people like me and so on. It’s going to get to be quite a headache figuring out… Read more »

Prior Aelred
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As Dean Mark Diebel points out, the entire “in communion with” question is not a matter for individual communicants nor even clergy with pastoral responsibility nor even bishops — perhaps primates, but if the ABC is still in communion with the North American churches (as the accounts of his wanting to celebrate the Eucharist with their primates being present would indicate) then any Anglican Church that does not forswear communion with the ABC is in communion with the North American Churches (& also with the Porvoo Lutherans, etc.) There is a reason for the Donatist comparisons that the schismatics find… Read more »