Thinking Anglicans

Maurice Sinclair argues for a new North American province

A former Primate of the Province of the Southern Cone, Bishop Maurice Sinclair, has written an article, available at Global South Anglican, Why support an Anglican Province of North America in process of formation?

He starts out:

The question of the formation and recognition of a new Anglican Province in North America is currently being debated in the Anglican Communion. There is the urgent need on the one hand to regularise the situation of Anglicans who cannot in conscience assent to the innovations in doctrine and ethics being introduced into the life of TEC. On the other hand there is a natural reluctance to create a rival body alongside what has been a historic part of the Anglican Church. Institutions tend to avoid decisive measures, and minimise risk. However, reasons are given here for giving official support to the first steps in the formation of the new Province. It can be argued that failure to take these measures actually increases risk to the institutional as well as the spiritual life of the Communion…


  • ettu says:

    I assume he has some valid points but comes across as the equivalent of a “talking head” wonder what the political/PR response will be. That is what this is about – more so than the religious aspect. Power – it is a wondrous thing

  • It can be argued that failure to take these measures actually increases risk to the institutional as well as the spiritual life of the Communion…¨¨ Maurice

    Don´t you love it when they attempt to hold a gun to OUR collective heads when ¨arguing¨ about the sacred positioning of excluding LGBT Christians at all levels of Churchlife…sorry, but we´ve been there and stood UP to that hate-feargenerating nonsense.

    Trusting God has great advantanges when one is oppressed, despised and abominated by those who would find their very own, customized, exclusive, segregated ¨place to stand.¨

  • Pat O'Neill says:

    I find it fascinating that none of Bishop Sinclair’s arguments rely on whether or not the actions and beliefs of the Episcopal Church or the Anglican Church of Canada are correct either morally or theologically. All of his arguments are–at their heart–political: “We should do this because most Anglicans world-wide want it. We should do this because most Christians world-wide agree.” Is this a church or a legislative body?

    I have reached the point where I no longer care as much about the integrity of the Anglican Communion as I do about the integrity of Christian faith and works….and I firmly believe that true Christianity requires us to affirm the loving committed relationships of gays and lesbians as being completely equal to and in keeping with marriage as “traditionally” defined.

  • WSJM says:

    Sinclair: “The question of the formation and recognition of a new Anglican Province in North America is currently being debated in the Anglican Communion.”

    By whom? (Besides the Duncanites and the Venablites, and a handful of other whiners.)

    The question of the formation of a new Anglo-Baptist Province in Southeast Australia is currently being debated in the Anglican Communion. Well, at least by me.

  • drdanfee says:

    Bishop Sinclair has got his talking points backwards, mostly. Is backwards a Realignment Specialty, these days?

    1.Anglican differences have been or are, pretty irreconcilable. Catholic sacrifice? Or Protestant memorial? We have burned at the stakes for that one. Ditto, others. The list of differences is long, and so is our list of how we have lived successfully through those differences as Anglicans. Why do hot button controversies about queer folks suddenly render our past successes void and irrelevant?
    2.Change is not finally settled, as the bishop claims. A look at Anglican history will demonstrate that some of our hot button changes simply fade away into obscurity. Others are resolved by a slow consensus which reveals that we have been pitching our controversies inadequately or inaccurately, according to modern standards of best practice inquiry. Still others – the exceptions which prove the Anglican change rules? – do get fairly steady attention over fifty years or a century which serves to resolve things.
    3.Staying open is not self-defeating, not damaging. Out, Partnered, and Parenting modern queer citizens in many countries are leading good decent lives, outside of and beyond almost every single negative traditional belief supposition about them. Strict, final closure can only lead Anglicans backwards. Closing down damages us much more than staying open, as believers. We then refuse to admit the real situation: Empirically speaking, all the evidence is hardly in, published. Research to test our changed hypotheses is still continuing. The only reason for closing down is that staying open has become uncomfortable for realignment believers, such that even other believers staying open is suddenly anathema to them. That is a closed down believer issue, not mainly an opening up believer issue. You cannot demand that I close mind and heart, so help me God.
    4.GAFACON and Realignment cannot have it both ways. Either be a typical Anglican believer by helping to maintain a big tent to include Anglican differences. Or leave to form a tent of your own. You cannot abide as a big tent Anglican while constantly threatening to tear the big tent down or else.
    5.You are indeed trying to force officials to get your way. Anglican openness and long-suffering persuasion has become realignment bullying. Ends justify means ethics is just one clue to the bullying going on. You are willing to tear up provinces, just to get your way.

  • Father Ron Smith says:

    “It can be argued that failure to take these measures (the institution of an alternative North American Province) actually increases risk to the institutional as well as the spiritual life of the Communion.” – Maurice Sinclair –

    This is not too surprising a take from the retired Bishop of Southern Cone – published on the ‘Global South’ web-site used by GAFCON supporters. His successor’s bid to host defectors from TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada has obviously prompted Mr. Sinclair to support his striving for some sort of foot-hold in North America. And the only way this can realistically happen is to champion the re-Asserters’ call for a new Province – separate from TEC and the ACC. What would they call such a body? Hardly Anglican.

    These territorial ambitions would most likely do more damage to the Anglican Communion than has presently been sustained – largely through the schismatic activities of the departing *sola scriptura* protesters. It is to be hoped that the ABC and the Anglican Consultative Council will resist such a structural travesty – in the common interest of the Anglican Communion.

    The Archbishop of Sydney – in the wake of his Diocese’s hopes for ‘lay-presidency’ – would probably no longer be expected be align himself with any ‘province’ that would not support his policy on this issue. So there goes one part of the GAFCON equation, which might have expected to back the ‘alternative province’ movement.

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