Thinking Anglicans

Duncan writes in the CEN

Bishop Bob Duncan has written an article for this week’s Church of England Newspaper.

Anglican Mainstream has reproduced it. See An Emerging North American Province.

Or, now read it at Religious Intelligence.

The twin trajectories of The Episcopal Church and of the Anglican Church of Canada away from any Communion-requested restraint on matters of moral order and legal prosecution have made permanent a widespread separation of parishes from their historic geographical dioceses in the United States and Canada. Now these alienated parishes representing the moral (and theological) mainstream of global Anglicanism are being joined (or are about to be joined) by the majorities of four former Episcopal Church dioceses: San Joaquin in California, Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, Quincy in Illinois and Fort Worth in Texas. The reality of a significantly disintegrated North American Anglicanism now stretches from coast to coast and from the Arctic to the Rio Grande…


  • xPittsburgh repeats the old claim of 22 Provinces not being in communion with TEC.

    It was a while ago since we heard that…

    Hasn’t materialised yet (cf the several Global South meetings), as far as I know. Would’t take it at face value…

  • Surely, if the anger matched the numbers claimed by xPittsburgh and others TEC would have been ejected long ago?

    Instead the numbers seem to have be shrinking, down to a dozen and half-a-dozen…

  • bobinswpa says:

    It seems to me that Bob Duncan is trying to get the ABC to bless or at least recognize the new province. It’s sort of like the badgering child that hopes by whinning that his/her parents will eventually begrudgingly give in/give up.

  • oldmiler says:

    More invention and less humility from Mr. Duncan. He writes like his — and others with him — claim to orthodoxy justifies contra-canonical action in the name of the “true church.” The labels of “orthodoxy” and “mainstream” cannot be applied to self in the present tense. These can only be ascribed after the fact, through the objectivity of history.
    Leaving without title, keys or treasury is the only honorable thing to do. No chance for that, I’m afraid.

  • Robert Ian Williams says:

    As I have pointed out if Duncan’s province is admitted , then the next on the list will be the Church of England in South Africa ( CESA)nomination which has waited patiently since 1870. Please remember that when CESA was out in the cold, Sydney faithfully stood by.

  • Leaving without title, keys or treasury is the only honorable thing to do. No chance for that, I’m afraid.¨ oldmiler

    That, of course, would require strength of real life conviction and TRUST in God…Duncan ought have studied marketing…he´s got the wrong approach…deregulation doesn´t work…it brings out the worst greed and envy in everyone, Duncan included as he defends his reason for being.

  • Fr Mark says:

    Why on earth are these English church publications humouring ex-bishop Bob Duncan like this? Surely even the CEN newspaper can see that it is not a wise or indeed Christian policy to encourage people overseas to disregard the jurisdiction of their peers in their national Anglican church? I thought the usual Evangelical way was to encourage those who have been found guilty by their church community to do penance rather than flaunt themselves?

  • Father Ron Smith says:

    “The goal of describing by December 2008 a ‘recognizably Anglican provincial structure’ has been adopted by the Lead Bishops Roundtable (Executive Committee). A Governance Task Force, chaired by a former chancellor of the Diocese of Virginia and composed of significant leadership from all the Common Cause Partners, is hard at work.” – Mr. Robert Duncan – former Bishop of Pittsburgh –

    The leadership of the ‘common cause partners’ – presumably headed by this former TEC bishop, is surely jumping ahead of the game. For unless his meeting with the Archbishop of Canterbury has led him to presume that there will be an easy road to an ‘alternative North American Province’, Mister Duncan might be ‘hoist by his own petard’.

    To determine, ahead of the forthcoming meeting of the ACC – which would have to approve any such departure from existing polity – that any new provincial body would be acceptable to ACC, is surely to appear to be dictating terms on this issue to the world-wide Anglican Communion. Also, such a move would damage the credibility of the Anglican Communion – especially in North America.

    The continuing hubris of this former prelate, and his schismatic associates, together with that of current movers and shakers within the GAFCON organisation, must alert us all to the agenda of the orchestrated power-play that is insidiously trying to undermine the character and witness of the Anglican Communion round the world.

    The question must be asked: Why cannot these unruly re-asserters just peel away from the Communion, and form their own Church of The Truly Sinless? I am sure that there are many other schismatic bodies that would be glad to join them in their lust for Justification by Law.

    Just don’t try to demean the rest of us by claiming to be Anglican.

  • Leonel says:

    Bob “I should be Primate too” Duncan is doing what his job description calls for. He knows it’s a hopeless appeal -Rowan will never recognize this new north american province thing of Duncan and his handlers. And Duncan will go all colonial on Rowan and declare, once again, Canterbury to be irrelevant. And will increase his prey over parishes of TEC and Canada and sooner than later UK and the sky is the limit baby!
    It is such a pity that a man with apparently so many organizational gifts should put them to use for the sake of such unnoble causes.

  • FrScott says:

    Why is it that we are so easily diverted from our mission (it happens very often!)? Nothing is lacking in TEC except the courage of our convictions. There is no point is seeking reconciliation with those who so clearly have no desire for reconciliation. I urge your consideration of the Church in the least developed nations. They cannot afford to be diverted, and it would do us well to pay attention. (Diocese of Boga at my blog.)

  • ettu says:

    Is it fair – it may be uncharitable- to say that Duncan seems to personify the sin of Pride?

  • jnwall says:

    Deposed Bp Duncan wants a church in which he will be the primate. To do that, he fomented schism in TEC. Clearly he will soon be proclaimed primate of whatever they will call it.

    But that’s only the first step. Now he has to get an Anglican Communion that will recognize him as primate. So far, he has the help of the GAFCON folks in doing that. If that means firing the ABC, then he’s prepared to try for that as well.

    I am reminded, however, of Proverbs 16:18 and expect that the train wreck is only a matter of time.

  • The overall message in the Duncan piece is this: give us what we want on one front of the war (border crossings) and we will stop fighting on that front and concentrate on the other front (throwing The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada out of the Anglican Communion.) What an attractive and gracious gesture from Bishop Bob! Note that our church and Canada’s church are now “rogue provinces.”

  • Canon Gary Waddingham says:

    A long time ago I heard the story of a layman at a cathedral (where I was a canon) who had desired to be in holy orders. He found an Old Catholic bishop who ordained him (and perhaps, as the joke goes, a baptismal font and two acolytes). Later he found someone to “consecrate” him a bishop. Still later (I’m not making this up) he “became” an archbishop.

  • “rogue provinces.”

    Meanwhile the happy poachers are facing law suit after law suit for attempting to violate our LOVE THY NEIGHBOR and THOU SHALT NOT STEAL Commandments…of course the lies are to be noted too as immoral and unChristian (even thou there are so many spewed about from destructionists that it has become commonplace to listen to him/them).

    We need only keep our eye on REAL standards of Gods good will toward ALL women and men…the dangerous excluders will fall away.

  • Wm Paul says:

    Who or what has caused schism except TEC’s provocative action in GC2003 which, the primates warned, would indeed tear ‘the sacramental unity of the church at its deepest level’ (a pretty spot-on definition of schism, eh?)? What a fair-minded, not ideological-driven assessment of +Duncan et al., is about might look like is this: “+Duncan is seeing whether there is possible a realignment within the Anglican Communion, the greater body, by a smaller body, namely, those who hold to the mind of the greater Anglican Communion including the official teaching of Lambeth 1.10 and to the spirit, letter, and direction of the Windsor report. This is placing pressure on the nature of the communion’s geographical boundaries.” If the snarling folks on this blog, who assert–my goodness, without knowing the man most likely!–sinful pride of Duncan, and other character faults, just had an ounce of fairmindedness they would admit how understandable it should be that realignment be considered, and that some, like +Duncan, should act upon it. As for the charge that there is some eagerness on Duncan’s part for a slice of primatial control, I can only say that 90% of people in PGh who know him would not agree with this at all.

    As for whether we are “rogue provinces”, I am reminded of the Episcopal Ghost in CS Lewis The Great Divorce who just can’t believe, can’t believe that he might just be apostate . . .it’s such an uncivilized word, after all. But simply look at our church: we have no intention of following Windsor.

  • Cheryl Va. says:

    There were Jews who broke ranks with Moses’ annointed leadership to return to the the moral (and theological) mainstream of global thinking of their time.

    Judaism was created anyway, the book of Numbers gives some amusing anecdotes about God’s slamdunking of the alternatives.

    God is committed to the third path, the majority might want to be in the camps of abusers, seeking some kind of divine protection from the wrath of God and having their status changed to victim.

    God is not and has never been about having victims or scapegoats. It is to Jesus’ shame that Christianity has allowed misogyny and abuse to continue for so long and to such a degree. The other two members of the Trinity would remind Jesus that he has insulted them by allowing some Christians to claim that God did not love before Jesus, and that God is wrathful and capricious and only Jesus’ grace protects only Jesus’ children under Jesus’ wings.

    God has never been like that, suffering is not something that God desires, and when God slam dunks it is to designed to shock and thus minimize the overall numbers of victims.

    God does not mind aggressive and selfish Christians hiding under Jesus wings. That way God’s agents do not have to listen to their selfish deceitful squawking for all eternity. God’s agents can choose to be in or out of Jesus’ heaven, as they can move throughout all of space and time.

    In the meantime, God is still committed to the third way, and liberal Christianity will continue to be rolled, out. Souls of the other faiths and movements will inter-relate with these Christians and they will share and absorb the best from all the traditions. This is required to fulfill scriptures e.g. Micah 4 “The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. God will judge between many peoples and will settle disputes for strong nations far and wide… All the nations may walk in the name of their gods; we will walk in the name of the LORD our God..”

  • drdanfee says:

    Quote. The reality of a significantly disintegrated North American Anglicanism now stretches from coast to coast and from the Arctic to the Rio Grande… Unquote.

    Decode. It is the USA civil war all over again, replayed this time round using queer folks as the hot button trash talked target group, standing in for slaves and other issues involved in the first war games.

    Comment, comparison. Duncan The Deposed is again preaching the statistically obvious – rightwing believers far outnumber progressive believers in North America, and so what? Even fairly rightwing believers in USA sometimes embrace common cause with this or that progressive idea or action which has somehow slipped through their heavy presuppositional defenses, so not even rightwing believers are as homogeneous as Duncan The Deposed needs them to be so that he can safely gather everybody into his new ark of rightwing believer safety. This sort of church war is old, old, old, old – and not worth all the bother of all the silly claims and provocations.

    Just because Duncan The Deposed has a near nervous breakdown every time he imagines that a lifelong-committed and parenting queer couple is sitting down to dinner and family night, somewhere in a Pittsburg neighborhood, does not actually mean what Duncan The Deposed preaches it means. This guy is suffering, and his drive to power is remarkable, along with his steady penchant for deceiving himself and other believers about what modern changes really mean for all of us.

    Alas. Lord have mercy.

  • Father Ron Smith says:

    “It is to Jesus’ shame that Christianity has allowed misogyny and abuse to continue for so long and to such a degree. – CherylVa

    Dear, dear Cheryl. This is not the first time you have blamed Jesus for the sins of some of his followers – who happen not to have understood the significance of the New Commandment, in all of its glorious inclusiveness. (It would appear that some of his followers still do not understand).

    It’s a bit like blaming God the Father for the sins of the Jews. This is rather unsettling to those of us who have a deep sense of the common inherence of Father, Son and Holy Spirit – the doctrine of The Blessed and Undivided Trinity – one of the founding tenets of the Christian Faith.

    You, perhaps of all people, Cheryl, should be aware of the emancipation of the women of his day being directly influenced and practised by the Incarnate Jesus. His support for the Woman caught in the act of adultery, for instance (what were his fellow Jews doing about the man involved?); and his choice of Mary Magdalene to become the Apostle of the Resurrection to the male disciples – these were specific instances of Jesus’ support for women – a very brave action in his time, and one reason for which Jesus was crucified by the male chauvinists.

    Just because some Christians seem to neglect the other Persons of the Trinity in favour of Jesus, that’s their aberration, not his. Jesus always referred to his dependance on his Father, without Whom, he said, he could do nothing.

  • JPM says:

    Wm. Paul, are you seriously arguing that failing to follow Windsor in all its particulars renders a church apostate?

    Are you seriously elevating The Windsor *Report* to the level of the Creeds?

    If so, then I am afraid that you are guilty of far greater apostasy than that of which you so blithely accuse others.

  • WmPaul says:

    To Jpm
    Please read closely. I said that ECUSA reminds me of the apostate ghost in Lewis work. My post is in response to the DUncan Bashing that routinely goes on by those who show very little sense that by any fairminded estimation it is ECUSA which has, or is, walking apart. Disregard of Windsor revals who is walking apart and should at least be admitted bt ECUSA and at the very last put an end to accusations of “schism” by those who are, truly, realigning within the communion.

  • Father Ron Smith says:

    WmPaul, could you please tell us which of the re-Asserters are, like you, protesting their compliance with the Windsor Report? I must have missed something important here.

    Another Question: Are the re-asserters going to actually abide by the moratorium which requires them to refrain from exercising jurisdiction in Provinces different from their own?

    Until, and unless, both the Windsor Report and the moratorium applicable to them, are declared to be binding upon them, I cannot see how either you or they, have any grounds on which to criticise non-compliance on the part of others.

    No-one in TEC or the Anglican Church of Canada remaining loyal to their roots is actually moving away from their Church body. The only people deserting their parent Churches are those whose cause you are apparently championing here. The term Schism usually applies to those who actually move away from their original Church affiliation.

  • Father Ron Smith says:

    “As for whether we are “rogue provinces”, I am reminded of the Episcopal Ghost in CS Lewis The Great Divorce who just can’t believe, can’t believe that he might just be apostate” – WmPaul-

    WmPaul. Are you suggesting that former Bishop Robert Duncan might be the ‘Episcopal Ghost’ in CSL’s story; who ‘just can’t believe that he might just be apostate”?

    If that’s what you’re saying, then, as a friend of his, you might be doing him a favour by letting him know that this is how he is viewed by the rest of us. It’s terrible for anyone to be divorced from reality.

  • Pat O'Neill says:


    First of all, there is no “ECUSA”. The name of the US province is The Episcopal Church…period.

    Second, if TEC is “walking apart” because it has elected and consecrated one single gay bishop, what then of Sydney? Is not lay presidency a greater break from Anglican tradition, practice and belief than the sexuality of a bishop?

  • JPM says:

    Fr. Ron, of course that other part of Windsor is not important (the part about piracy) because it does not involve sex. In today’s newly fundamentalized Anglicanism, only actions involving certain people’s genitals are sinful.

    I would say the same to Pat: lay presidency has nothing to do with people’s peepees and hoohoos and thus is not an important issue.

    See how easy “orthodox” moral theology is!

  • BillyD says:

    “First of all, there is no “ECUSA”. The name of the US province is The Episcopal Church…period.”

    As it turns out, you are mistaken.

    The name of the Church has not changed. The Preamble to our Constitution reads “The Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America, otherwise known as The Episcopal Church (which name is hereby recognized as also designating the Church), is a constituent member of the Anglican Communion…”

    We didn’t change the name of the Church – we simply recognized an alternate name. (And of course, if you want to get really picky, we’re “Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America.”)

  • Prior Aelred says:

    Actually, there is no “ECUSA” — there is “PECUSA” aka “TEC”

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