Thinking Anglicans

Colorado Springs: church court hearing

Updated Wednesday evening

The Diocese of Colorado has been holding an ecclesiastical court hearing to consider what action should be taken in the case of The Revd Donald Armstrong.

Jean Torkelson in the Rocky Mountain News has Episcopal priest’s case goes to church court and Episcopal lawyer slams Armstrong at hearing.

Colleen Slevin of Associated Press has Panel To Decide Case Against Armstrong.

Ed Sealover in the Colorado Springs Gazette has Episcopals may revoke Armstrong’s ordination.

All this is separate from the property dispute which is what the Denver Post is focused on in Theology battle rocks Springs church, world by Electa Draper.

The two congregations involved have websites:
The Episcopal Church congregation is here.
The CANA congregation is here.

Update
Another two reports:

Jean Torkelson Rocky Mountain News Spotlight hotter for ex-rector:

…The whistle-blower who entangled the Rev. Don Armstrong in allegations of misusing hundreds of thousands of dollars in church money was the parish bookkeeper, an attorney said Tuesday…

Electa Draper Denver Post Rebel priest spurns hearing

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L Roberts
L Roberts
13 years ago

I am very tempted to become a conservative orthodox on-going Episcopalian and thus to witness against the errors of TEC. It all seems so warm, inviting, rational and fulfilling …

…. and to think all I have to do is leave my partner of 30 odd years and become celibate and lonely….

A winning combination that.

Curtis
Curtis
13 years ago

The conservative orthodox leadership is fragmenting. Ephram Radner resigned yesterday from the Anglican Communion Network. His resignation and explanation are here:

http://www.kendallharmon.net/t19/index.php/t19/article/4770/

If I’m not mistaken he was buds with Armstrong from Colorado Springs. I don’t know if he’s still in Pueblo (near Colorado Springs) but it seems there has been a new dilution in wing-nut leadership.

Pluralist
13 years ago

L Roberts – do you think there is any money in such a move?

NP
NP
13 years ago

Well….I hope he is not guilty of theft or fraud…..but if he is, he should certainly not be in ministry (after all, we would not want people in ministry who do not repent of their sin, would we….?)

John Henry
John Henry
13 years ago

And if he dipped into the till, shouldn’t he make restitution, NP?

Of course, Don Armstrong went mountain bike riding rather than answer the charges brought against him yesterday.

L Roberts
L Roberts
13 years ago

I doubt it Pluralist.

It would be a total act of overwhelming masochism. But the american ‘conservatives’ seem to be replete with masochism –if yesterday’s events are anything to go by.

Erika Baker
Erika Baker
13 years ago

“after all, we would not want people in ministry who do not repent of their sin, would we….?)”

You need to become aware of sin before you can repent. For most of us, that’s a life long ongoing process. I suppose that means no-one should ever be ordained….

Erika Baker
Erika Baker
13 years ago

“L Roberts – do you think there is any money in such a move?”

Pluralist – depends on whether you get a decent divorce settlement from your Civil Partnership….

At least you don’t have to worry about broken hearts. It’s not love, after all, it’s only sinful sex.

JPM
JPM
13 years ago

Armstrong says that this court has no jurisdiction over him.

I wonder if he feels the same way about the Internal Revenue Service?

Göran Koch-Swahne
13 years ago

Surely. That’s why all this wining about “taking (real) Christians to civil courts”.

They want immunity, some of them need immunity.

Anarchy. A Polish Parliament.

NP
NP
13 years ago

Erika – no, people who repent of their sins are worthy of ordination…..those who say their sin is somehow exempt and the bible can be ignored on certain points, they are not worthy….not my creation but the clear position of the church even if it has been plagued by weak and duplicitous leaders who have not enforced it. ….and to become aware of our sins, we do not need to gaze at our navels, we have the bible……just ignoring what it says is sin because we have not come to a realisation which agrees with it is not a strong… Read more »

L Roberts
L Roberts
13 years ago

It is the lawlessness and break-down of authority that concerns me. especially when it comes from those who had seemed most pro-authority. But who then reject it when it applies to themselves. The way the authority of TEC has been fauted is really an own goal for the so-called ‘conservatives’ (who are nothing of the sort when it comes to the Canons and procedures of their own Church). They undermine all authority by their words and actions, including the very notion of lawful authority itself. The AC by contrast has no authority,save moral authority— the ACC does have more structural… Read more »

NP
NP
13 years ago

L Roberts – you are right, most of us in the AC do not think TEC’s rules and procedures are as important as scripture…….the questions is not what are TEC’s rules or “polity”….but were they right or wrong in 2003 to ignore the pleas of the AC and go ahead with an action which directly contradicts an agreed position of the AC (let alone the bible)

If they were wrong, most in the AC want that recognised for the sake of order and unity in the AC

Erika Baker
Erika Baker
13 years ago

NP
It’s about motes and specks of dust in people’s eyes. We do find it incredibly difficult to recognise the sin in ourselves and do not make the connection with what the bible says on those issues where we have our own blind spots. Becoming aware of our sins is a life long process.

It’s slow, it’s painful and it requires a huge amount of trust in God’s love to guide us through it without becoming either blase or crushed by our increasing awareness.

Ford Elms
Ford Elms
13 years ago

“were they right or wrong in 2003 to ignore the pleas of the AC and go ahead with an action which directly contradicts an agreed position of the AC (let alone the bible)” And why is it that this so provokes your anger? Don’t say it’s because you don’t approve of those who go against Scripture or fudge away its teachings. That is simply self delusion on your part. You ignore all the times this is pointed out to you. You willfully ignore in yourself of the very things you accuse others of. You insist on compliance to a Law… Read more »

NP
NP
13 years ago

Ford, my problem with Armstrong if he is guilty is that he would not be fit to be a church leader according to scripture….the same scriptures apply to VGR

NP
NP
13 years ago

Armstrong, if he is guilty, does not deserve to be a minister…..

It is just nonsense to say “don’t judge because none of us are perfect”

Erika / Ford – even people who are sinful in other ways are entitled to a view.

Pls read 1 Cor 5:12 – we do have the right to judge the fitness of Armstrong….and anyone who would be a leader.

(In fact, reading all of 1 Corinthians might be a good idea because this idea that we must never make any judgments is just not biblical (let alone common sense))

Malcolm+
Malcolm+
13 years ago

Surely the point of a proper disciplinary process is to restore the person as far as possible to wholeness. If Fr. Armstrong is guilty, then the goal of any disciplinary action should be less about punishment than about restoring relationships.

ruidh
ruidh
13 years ago

“Surely the point of a proper disciplinary process is to restore the person as far as possible to wholeness.” Hmmmm. I wonder if that’s true. the purpose of the sacrament of reconciliation is to do that. The purpose of a pastoral relationship is to do that. And one hopes that Fr. Armstrong is getting that kind of pastoral care. (Though I suspect he isn’t.) The point of a disciplinary process is to protect the church from scandal. It’s not hard to see defrocking as appropriate for theft and fraud on the scale that Fr. Armstrong stands accused of committing. I… Read more »

Malcolm+
Malcolm+
13 years ago

I was not arguing against punishment for offences. And “defrocking” may well be an appropriate punishment in the particular case.

However, discipline is about making (and restoring) disciples. While punishment can (and sometimes should) be part of the process, it is not the point of the process.

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