Thinking Anglicans

Kenya and Chelmsford update

John Richardson thought it would be helpful to give us chapter and verse of the things his diocesan bishop has done that he objects to: he spent time over the weekend listing them out, and you can read his list here:
Bishop John Gladwin on the issue of Human Sexuality.

Meanwhile his Anglican Mainstream colleague Chris Sugden has published an interpretation of “Listening” that can best be described as bizarre.


Bible and Homosexual Partnerships

Jonathan Wynne-Jones wrote an article for the Sunday Telegraph which was headlined Bible supports homosexual partnerships, says bishop.

Other responses to the story were reported by Ekklesia.

The tone of the original story, and the reported reactions of conservatives make interesting reading in the light of a recent Fulcrum newsletter article on Homophobia by Andrew Goddard. The long version of his paper (recommmended reading) can be found here.


more about ECUSA/Windsor resolutions

Kendall Harmon has responded to my earlier comment that:

…it is far from clear to me exactly what alternative resolutions would be favoured by those in the AAC and NACDAP who remain fundamentally opposed to the actions of GC2003. I can find no clear statement of an alternative proposal from them.

with a copy of the text linked here, and:

This document can also serve as a response to Simon Sarmiento’s strange assertion that “it is far from clear” to him “exactly what alternative resolutions [to those of the special Commission] would be favoured by those in the AAC and NACDAP who remain fundamentally opposed to the actions of GC2003.” As the Anglican Communion Institute recognizes, that would be resolutions along the broad lines of the one above from January 2005 as well as four of the five 2005 resolutions of the Diocesan Convention of South Carolina.

Will somebody then be filing resolutions to this effect so that they will in due course appear here? It is the absence of any such submission as yet that I find puzzling. Perhaps I don’t understand the GC legislative process.


BBC on VGR, Kenya

The BBC’s Sunday radio programme has two items of interest for the last 14+ minutes of the programme. Using this link, go forward about 30 minutes, for the start:

  • Interview by Jane Little with Gene Robinson
  • Feature on Kenya and Chelmsford, including interviews with John Richardson of Chelmsford Anglican Mainstream, with Tim Wambunya of the Kenya Church Association UK, and with Ruth Gledhill.

Better, permanent links on Tuesday now here:
VGR interview 4 minutes
Chelmsford/Kenya interviews 9 minutes


ECUSA and Windsor: resolutions

The last report on TA about action at General Convention concerning the Windsor Report was here, on 1 May.

Since then, there has been much online discussion about the resolutions in the Special Commission report but it is far from clear to me exactly what alternative resolutions would be favoured by those in the AAC and NACDAP who remain fundamentally opposed to the actions of GC2003. I can find no clear statement of an alternative proposal from them.

Some alternative resolutions have been filed by dioceses:
Diocese of Rochester C004 Response to Windsor Report
Diocese of Alabama C014 Response to Windsor Report
Diocese of Florida C025 Affirmation of Windsor Report
Diocese of Upper South Carolina C037 Affirming Windsor Report

The AAC analysis is here:“Moving Slowly with Caution Isn’t Stopping”
And the NACDAP statement is here: More Than Twenty Bishops Issue Position Statement
The Anglican Communion Institute has issued this: What it will take

But by far the most detailed analysis of the Special Commission resolutions can be found in this document from PEP: “What Should General Convention 2006 Do?” which can be downloaded from this page as a PDF document. This 17 page document is well worth reading even if you don’t agree with its viewpoint.

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Saturday roundup

Here’s a column from the Northern Echo:
At Your Service: Giving succour to flocks of all kinds

In The Times Roderick Strange writes Forty days is an eternity which reminds us of a transcendent dimension. Also Sholto Byrnes reports on An agnostic happy to nurse the ‘vice’ of religion.

Stewart Dakers reflects in the Guardian’s Face to Faith column about Christian Aid Week.

The Telegraph has Christopher Howse writing on intercessory prayer in Sun for the wedding, please.


Zimbabwe: clerics seek help from Sentamu

From the IWPR a report by Trevor Grundy Zimbabwean Clerics to Seek Help from Archbishop of York


Kenya and Chelmsford: Friday

Two Three more items:

Church Times Rachel Harden Kenya visit unravels over gays

The Times Ruth Gledhill OUT OF AFRICA: Bishop John Gladwin. Even allowing for this being in the features part of the paper, rather than the news columns, it seems a little odd to me to call Bishop John a “far-left liberal activist” and the comparison with Dr John Reid, who this week happens to be Home Secretary in the UK Government, escapes me entirely. But hey, it’s Friday.

And another comment piece, this one from the Nation in Nairobi, says Gay laws quite ambiguous.


latest from Lake Malawi

High Court throws out Anglican case …Let it be solved at church level is the headline of the cover story in the Malawi Daily Times.


Kenya and Chelmsford: Thursday

Another report from Nairobi:
Nation 26 May Envoy sent to resolve gay row

The latest report from Nairobi:
Nation 25 May Request for sermon by gay rights bishop turned down

Today’s London reports:
Jonathan Petre Telegraph Kenyan hosts abandon bishop due to his liberal views on gays
Maxine Frith Independent Bishop of Chelmsford left stranded in Kenya in row over gay rights
Xan Rice in Nairobi and David Pallister Guardian Kenya’s Anglicans snub bishop over liberal view of homosexuality

And Fulcrum has this article: The Chelmsford Diocese/Mt Kenya link must not be allowed to die

Update Church of England Newspaper has Kenya Archbishop pulls the plug on Bishop Gladwins visit

Reuters Wangui Kanina Kenyan Anglicans reject UK bishop linked to gay group
Yorkshire Post Paul Whitehouse Bishop stranded over gay dispute
Ekklesia English bishop rejected in Kenya over gay row
EADT24 Bishop’s trip stopped over views on gays


more about Kenya and Chelmsford

Ruth Gledhill has a report in today’s Times Bishop is abandoned in deepest Africa
and now also this blog article: Kenya cancels guest programme for Chelmsford.

A further article has appeared in the Nairobi press:
Nation Anglicans disown bishop over gay claims

The Chelmsford Anglican Mainstream website is here. Their first press release announcement complaining about their bishop’s association with Changing Attitude is here: Bishop of Chelmsford new patron of ‘Changing Attitude’

Further reports are now published:
BBC Gay support bishop’s Kenya snub
Telegraph Gay-friendly bishop marooned in Africa

See also Dave Walker’s cartoon blog entry


what is going on in Kenya?

There has been a series of news reports from the Nairobi newspapers in the last few days about the visit of a delegation of Chelmsford Diocese to the Anglican Church of Kenya.

21 May Anglican gay lobby patron visits Kenya or this copy. Also this copy.
22 May Bishop denies gay lobby links or this copy. Also this copy.

East African Standard
22 May I have no gay links, says UK clergyman or this copy.
23 May ACK still opposed to gay marriages or this copy.

A series of press releases published on the Changing Attitude website sheds some light on the matter:
22 May John Gladwin falsely accused of lobbying for homosexuality in Kenya
22 May Archbishop of Kenya unable to “advance the lined-up activities” for Bishop Gladwin’s visit to Kenya (Anglican Church of Kenya press release)
23 May The Bishop of Chelmsford and the Anglican Church of Kenya (Diocese of Chelmsford press release)
23 May Senior Kenyan Anglican holds different views on homosexuality from the Archbishop

Also this copy of the second item above.

The explanation for all of this can be found in the following:


Faithful Cities

Today, the Church of England and the Methodist Church of Great Britain published Faithful Cities.
The website for this is at the Commision on Urban Life and Faith.

There has already been some press coverage of this:

Reuters Anglicans angered over destitute asylum-seekers
Press Association Narrow the poverty gap urges Church
BBC Church anger over asylum poverty

Earlier, Ruth Gledhill had this in Saturday’s Times Archbishop in call for action on age of false celebrity and this blog entry today.

The Archbishop of Canterbury spoke in the House of Lords last Friday on a related theme.


more Anglican Covenant news

The Anglican Communion Office has published a document today.
See covering note: Towards an Anglican Covenant
And the actual document The Proposal for an Anglican Covenant

And in the Telegraph a letter No two-tier approach from Gregory Cameron is published, in response to the original news article.


weekend opinions

No cinema reviews here.

In The Times Stephen Plant Hope for the hereafter nourishes the urge to live better in a grime present

In the Telegraph Christopher Howse The lives and souls of the nation

In the Guardian Alec Gilmore writes in Face to Faith about religious liberty.

In the Church Times Giles Fraser writes about The subtle sin of lay presidency


Anglican Covenant news

This week, stories about the Windsor proposal for an Anglican Covenant resurfaced:

Telegraph Jonathan Petre Archbishop backs two-track Church to heal divisions
Ruth Gledhill That Petre ‘covenant’ story
Living Church Steve Waring Anglican Covenant Unlikely in Less than Five Years

Jim Naughton had this comment.


more about Nigeria

First, the Guardian’s blogsite, comment is free published Partners in prejudice by Peter Tatchell. This is described by Jim Naughton as a “searing attack” on the Archbishop of Canterbury. Tatchell is not polite about the Archbishop of Abuja either.

Second, Changing Attitude has issued a press release entitled IDAHO – the International Day Against Homophobia. This notes that the proposed Nigerian legislation will:

Any Nigerian bishop who tries to listen to homosexual experience in accordance with commitments made by the Anglican Communion will be labelled a supporter of homosexual people and be at risk of prosecution under the terms of the new bill, subject to a maximum prison sentence of 5 years.

The bill will make it impossible for any Nigerian bishop fulfil the commitment of the Anglican Church expressed in the Windsor report to listen to the experience of lesbian and gay people.

Changing Attitude Nigeria thanks the Canadian bishops who have spoken their mind robustly in criticising the Nigerian bill and disassociating from it.


another view of TEA

A joint response to the Guildford report has been issued by:
Church Society, Fellowship of Word and Spirit, and Reform.

The response can be found either here, or over here.

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FiF has more TEA

In addition to their frosty response to AffCath/Watch, Forward in Faith has published TEA – the theological response. This complements the legal response previously published.


Affirming Catholicism and WATCH agree plans

Update Wednesday
Forward in Faith has issued a press release in response to this.

Groups agree fundamental plans for women bishops in the Church of England
Joint press release by Affirming Catholicism and WATCH

A campaigning group and a network of Anglo-Catholics in the Church of England have agreed the fundamental principles by which women should be appointed as bishops. For the first time, the leadership and members of the Executive Committees of Affirming Catholicism and WATCH (Women and the Church), which between them represent nearly half the members of the Church of England’s General Synod, have jointly drawn up a list of key, non-negotiable principles for moving forward on women bishops.

Affirming Catholicism and WATCH had previously submitted separate proposals to the House of Bishops working party which consulted on proposals set out in the Guildford Report published earlier this year. The joint key principles draw heavily on their separate submissions and challenge the scope of the Guildford proposals which would, if implemented, provide a ‘women bishops free zone’ for those opposed to the ordination of women.

Christina Rees, Chair of National WATCH said: “The Church is currently discussing proposals which so limit the ministry of women bishops in order to take account of those who won’t accept them, that there is a danger of creating a second class of bishops who are women. Our principles – which we regard as non-negotiable – call for the Church to affirm unequivocally its confidence in the ordination of women by not discriminating against them.”

The formal consultation process on women bishops began in 2000 with the setting up a House of Bishops’ Working Party on Women in the Episcopate, but the journey began over 30 years ago when General Synod agreed that there was ‘no fundamental objection to the ordination of women to the priesthood.’ There are now over 2,500 clergy women in the Church of England. For the past two years there have been equal numbers of women and men being trained for the ordained ministry in the Church of England.

The Rev’d Richard Jenkins, Director of Affirming Catholicism said: “The Church of England has always made room for different opinions. But the theology and law of the Church must give priority to the fact that we are a Church which has now joyfully accepted and overwhelmingly received the ordination of women. Our principles suggest ways in which those who are opposed can be given security and space, but still remain recognisably within one Church.”

The groups now aim to discuss their principles with evangelicals and other groups in the Church in order to reach the widest possible agreement about how to move forward. The House of Bishops will meet again at the beginning of June to discuss the results of their consultation. The bishops will then produce a revised plan to be debated by the General Synod in July.