Thinking Anglicans

update on Quincy

Updated Friday evening

The Living Church reports that the former bishop of Quincy, who recently retired suddenly just before the diocese voted to align with the Southern Cone, has accepted a new assignment, see Bishop Ackerman Accepts Call to Springfield.

ENS reports that QUINCY: Diocese begins to reorganize after split.

There is a report overnight that

Members of the Cathedral parish of the Diocese of Quincy voted Thursday night to not be “realigned” or “removed” to the Anglican province of the Southern Cone in a 181 to 35 vote.

According to Episcopal Café four hundred of the diocese’s 1850 members belong to the cathedral parish, and it accounts for 22 percent of Quincy’s average Sunday attendance.

There is more information here.

Friday evening update

ENS has QUINCY: Cathedral to stay in the Episcopal Church and the Living Church has Quincy’s Cathedral Parish Won’t Join Southern Cone.

And there is this press release about a forthcoming meeting.


Lambeth responds to Wheaton

Updated Thursday evening

For reports of the event yesterday in Illinois, see here, and also here.

ENS has published Lambeth Palace responds to Common Cause Partnership announcement:

“There are clear guidelines set out in the Anglican Consultative Council Reports, notably ACC 10 in 1996 (resolution 12), detailing the steps necessary for the amendments of existing provincial constitutions and the creation of new provinces,” the spokesperson said. “Once begun, any of these processes will take years to complete. In relation to the recent announcement from the meeting of the Common Cause Partnership in Chicago, the process has not yet begun.”

Resolution 12 from ACC 10 can be found here.

The BBC World Service has a 9 minute radio segment in which Christopher Landau interviews several of the principals in this story.



Listen (9mins)
Last Updated: Wednesday, 3 December 2008, 00:41 GMT

Breakaway members of the Anglican churches in North America are announcing the formation of a new north American church. Their unilateral actions will result in two competing Anglican churches existing in North America.

Our religious affairs correspondent Christopher Landau asks: What does this mean for those trying to preserve the unity of the worldwide communion?

Thursday evening update

A further Episcopal News Service report: Communion process presents challenges for proposed province by Matthew Davies and Mary Frances Schjonberg

Church of England Newspaper New American Province looms by George Conger

The Times Archbishops hold Canterbury summit over threat of schism by Ruth Gledhill

And also, Lambeth Palace on new province as Gafcon primates fly in for summit on Ruth’s blog.


The great king's feast

On this day in the year 1637, a man reported a vision that he had seen. ‘I have been at a great feast,’ he said, ‘O, magnify the Lord with me.’ One of his hearers asked him, ‘At a feast?’ and he replied, ‘Ay, at a great feast. At the great King’s feast.’

These were the last words of Nicholas Ferrar, who died at Little Gidding shortly after midnight on Monday 4 December 1637, just as Advent Sunday had ended.

In Advent the Church traditionally focuses on ‘coming’. Perhaps primarily we think of the birth of Jesus at Bethlehem, but the lectionary reminds us of other themes too: the role of John the Baptist; the prophets; judgement; the kingdom that is to come.

Ferrar’s vision of a feast was and remains one of the central images of the coming kingdom — a time of plenty, a time when all shall be welcomed to eat at the table in God’s household. It’s an image that Jesus uses frequently in his parables about the kingdom, and it is an image that comes to us from the Old Testament prophets. Isaiah foretells that God ‘will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-matured wines’ (Isaiah 25.6).

In Isaiah this is all seen as part of the time when God shall rule the earth from Mount Zion, and the poor, the humble, the downtrodden will be raised up to a place of honour. Death itself will be swallowed up for ever, and God will wipe away the tears from the people’s eyes. Isaiah’s prophecy was made at a time of great difficulty for the people of Israel and it proclaims his belief that, however bad things looked, the God of Israel would remember those who were faithful.

Isaiah, moreover, proclaims his great idea that the God of Israel was supreme, the only god, and that God is a lover of justice and mercy, rather than an unfaithful tyrant. Jesus develops the idea further: he does not simply talk about feasting in God’s kingdom; in addition he actually sits and eats and drinks with the underclasses and the unclean, declaring by his actions that their sins are forgiven (because they needed no further ritual cleansing) and that they are favoured by God. Jesus’s respectable contemporaries were scandalized by this behaviour, but it is all too easy for us not to see the scandal, and even easier for us to pay lip-service to looking after those less favoured by society in our own day.

Nicholas Ferrar and his family, living a quiet and godly life at Little Gidding, did not forget the poor and needy. They welcomed into their household a number of poor widows, they provided alms and education for many, and Ferrar, utilizing his training in medicine, ran a dispensary for the neighbourhood. And we too, each of us in our own lives, can perhaps take some simple and practical steps to alleviate the suffering around us. In this way, as well as by prayer and faith, we will help to realize God’s kingdom here on earth, and proclaim the Advent hope to the world. That is our challenge this Advent.

Today at Little Gidding, a service of Holy Communion will be celebrated at the tomb of Nicholas Ferrar to honour his memory and his example of spiritual determination and faith in an age of great trouble. In the eucharist we enjoy a foretaste of the banquet in God’s household. May we, with Nicholas Ferrar and all God’s holy people, sit at the great King’s feast!


further news reports from Wheaton

Updated Thursday lunchtime

For earlier reports go here.

The New York Times article by Laurie Goodstein previously linked has been written-through and is now headlined Episcopal Split as Conservatives Form New Group (h/t KH).

Also, there is a link here to a podcast in which this journalist is interviewed.

Reuters Michael Conlon Episcopal Church dissidents move toward division

Chicago Tribune Manya Brachear Conservatives unveil plan to break from Episcopal Church

Cleveland Plain Dealer Former Episcopal breakaway parishes join new North American Anglican Church

Fort Worth Star-Telegram Fort Worth Episcopal diocese joins new Anglican Church in North America

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Proposed constitution to reunite conservative Episcopalian groups

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Duncan to head new Anglican church

Canada National Post Conservative Anglicans take step in forming new church

Washington Post Conservative Episcopalians Vote to Create Alternative Branch by Michelle Boorstein

Washington Times Anglican conservatives propose constitution by Julia Duin

And,in the British press:

Telegraph Anglican row spills into US as Episcopal church splits over homosexual priests by Tom Leonard

And, there was this earlier report on Episcopal News Service that I missed yesterday, Conservative Anglicans due to announce new province.

Thursday lunchtime update

Religious Intelligence has this report by George Conger Legal framework set for new Third Province in North America


Anglican fragmentation

A report from Canada of division among conservatives there, in an Anglican Journal report Conservative Anglicans determined to stay within church by Keith Knight.

About 50 conservative Anglican leaders, including eight young theological students, gathered in Toronto for a one-day consultation on Nov. 25 and emerged with a determination to remain within the Anglican Church of Canada. They came from 16 dioceses across the country.

Rev. Brett Cane of St. Aidan’s Anglican Church in Winnipeg is chair of Anglican Essentials Federation who was quick to point out that the organization is going through a name change. He said that the “Essentials” label has negative connotations in some parts of the country. He said that the federation is loosening its connection to the Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC). “We will still maintain links of fellowship with the network but we will not be organizationally tied together.”

Andrew Brown has commented at Cif belief on Anglican divisions in When a schism has a schism of its own.

For most of the first years of Rowan Williams’ time as leader of the Anglican Communion, there was a running story about whether he could hold it together in the face of its divisions about almost everything, but most noisily about gay people and liberalism. Some time this summer, it became obvious that he hadn’t and that there is a full-scale schism under way but by that time almost everyone had got bored and started to talk about other things. So this week the story returns with a twist: will there be a second schism within the schism? In particular will the coalition that has been trying to drive the liberal churches of North America out of the Communion break up; and will the puritan evangelical faction start to break up the Church of England too?

Over at Episcopal Café there is discussion under the heading If the Episcopal Church got adventuresome of an article on his own blog by Geoffrey Hoare titled Archbishop Duncan.


Anglican fragmentation 2

Updated Wednesday evening

Three reports this morning about the forthcoming event in Illinois:

BBC North American Anglicans to split by Christopher Landau
Update this report has now been written-through by editorial staff and retitled North American Anglicans separate.

Christian Science Monitor Conservative bishops propose a competing North American Anglican church by Jane Lampman

Christian Post Breakaway Anglicans Aim for Less Division with New Province by Lillian Kwon

Wednesday evening update

This short Associated Press report: Conservatives form rival group to Episcopal Church

Now superseded by this substantial one by Rachel Zoll Conservatives form rival group to Episcopal Church

New York Times Laurie Goodstein Conservatives Expected to Split Episcopal Church

Chicago Tribune Manya Brachear Schism or stunt? Conservatives form new Anglican denomination

Dallas Morning News Jeffrey Weiss New Anglican-ish province to include Fort Worth?

epiScope has this Statement from The Episcopal Church.

The Anglican Church in North America has published:
Draft Constitution html pdf
Draft Canons html pdf

Telegraph US Anglicans form breakaway church

Daily Mail Anglican Church in U.S. splits in two in row over gay issues

Wall Street Journal Episcopals Form Rival Church

Earlier reports:

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Constitution to reunite conservative Episcopal groups

Canadian Press Breakaway Anglicans to form new North American church


Archbishop in TV documentary

BBC One (Wales only) has a documentary scheduled for Wednesday 3 December at 10.45 pm.

The Archbishop

A personal profile of The Archbishop of Wales, Dr Barry Morgan, filmed at a time of great division in the Anglican Church. The programme examines the arguments surrounding the consecration of gay bishops and the ordination of women bishops.

Read the press release at the Church in Wales website: The Archbishop – BBC One Wales documentary.

Two newspaper reports:

Western Mail Archbishop of Wales Barry Morgan says he would consecrate a gay bishop

Daily Post Archbishop of Wales would consecrate gay bishop