Thinking Anglicans

Sydney diocesan news

Updated Sunday evening

The Church Times has a report Sydney synod defies Tribunal decision by Muriel Porter.

THE diocesan synod in Sydney has reaffirmed its 2008 decision to permit deacons to preside at holy communion, despite the recent majority decision by the national Church’s Appellate Tribunal that diaconal presidency is unconstitutional.

The synod rejected several attempts to amend a motion, brought by a Sydney regional bishop, Dr Glenn Davies, which “noted” what it described as “the advisory opinion” of the Tribunal but reaffirmed the 2008 motion that the Tribunal declared unconstitutional…

…Since 2008, Sydney diocese has implemented a permanent diaconate, ordaining clergy to the priesthood only when they become parish rectors. Assistant clergy and chaplains remain in deacon’s orders. The 215 active deacons in Sydney constitute just over one third of the licensed clergy, and are increasingly leading new congregations and church plants.

There are also reports on the finances of the diocese. A further Church Times report is subscriber-only until next Friday, but instead there are these accounts:

Church of England Newspaper Mixed report on growth and income given to Sydney synod

…The archbishop told the Synod the diocese was still reeling from the effects of the global financial crisis and the “financial issues are grave.”

“In round terms, it seems possible that the amount of money available” he said “to support diocesan works in the next few years is going to be reduced from the $7.5 million of 2010 to something like $4 million.”

The cutbacks in diocesan spending in 2008 were “only the beginning,” he said and warned that parishes might be asked to pick up a larger share of the diocese’s expenses in the years to come…

Sydney Morning Herald Anglicans warned church is on its knees

The Anglican Church in Sydney is in diabolical trouble. Already battered by the global financial crisis, the diocese is planning further savage spending cuts.

The archbishop, Peter Jensen, told the annual synod on Monday: “The financial issues are grave…”

Update

Here is the official Sydney diocesan version of the story about the tribunal decision: Sydney resolute on deacons celebrating Lord’s Supper.

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Laurence Roberts
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Laurence Roberts

I do not see how Sydney diocese can remain in the Australian Church or in communion’ with the C of E if it practices this form of presidency of Communion. The only known and recognised Anglican way of authorising Deacons to lead the Communion service is by Ordination to the Order of Presbyter. (cf the BCP., 1662) It is completely perverse way of proceeding. (And I am hardly a virgin when it comes to eucharistic diversity, but this seems crazy. For myself, I don’t care, but it is very inconsiderate of their fellow-anglicans). They certainly have not widely consulted the… Read more »

Wilf
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Wilf

Surely they’ve got to get into trouble in the Anglican Communion for this. This is not a development but a breach in catholic order.

Martin Reynolds
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Martin Reynolds

Is that 3000 new people in just ONE year?

That’s outstanding! Wonderful news.

RFSJ+
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RFSJ+

re: the Sydney note. It’s not un-ironic that if you substitute “TEC” for “Sydney” and “full inclusion” for “the Lord’s supper” in the underlying article, you get a surprisingly familiar concept…..

JPM
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JPM

Can we finally stop pretending that these Plymouth Brethren are Anglicans?

Leonardo Ricardo
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Let´s see if I understand this…the selfwill running riot at The Anglican Church in Sydney includes snubbing the collective ministry of the greater church in Australia…meanwhile, Jensen/Sydney, are being shoved onto their knees because of using habitual bad judment in many of their ¨we know best¨affairs…still, +Jensen and Sydney blame others/international financial problems and refuse to take responsibility for their own greedy financial speculation/ignorance…sounds just like most other branches of the Global South to me…strutting through clouds of smoke, huffing and puffing about how wise/moral they are with little to support thunderous grandstanding at Church…ego´s blown way out of control.

Fr Mark
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Fr Mark

RFSJ: “re: the Sydney note. It’s not un-ironic that if you substitute “TEC” for “Sydney” and “full inclusion” for “the Lord’s supper” in the underlying article, you get a surprisingly familiar concept…” I think the irony of the situation is certainly not lost of those of us who comment regularly on here, RFSJ. The likes of Sydney diocesan leadership have been taking a very high and judgemental moral line towards the rest of us for quite some time. I won’t share with you the expression on my face when I read how money their archbishop seems to have lost them… Read more »

Father Ron Smith
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Father Ron Smith

Now is the time for the Sydney ‘Anglican’ diocese to declare it’s incompatibility with traditional Anglicanism. There can be little doubt that it’s demise is partly due to the idiosyncratic rule of ‘Archbishop’ Peter Jensen, whose fundamentalist leadership – now allied to the Dissenters at large within the Communion – has brought this sad decline in Anglican catholic and apostolic witness in the Diocese of Sydney. It would have been better, perhaps, for Jensen to have resigned his office in the Church before his clones in the Diocese went ahead with this act of defiance of Anglican Orthodoxy – something… Read more »

Robert Ian Williams
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Robert Ian Williams

Sydney can weather the storm financially….the diocese is still very wealthy. Indeed Sydney congregations can pay for their churches..unlike some liberal congregations.

Laurence Roberts
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Laurence Roberts

Rather high church PBs at that JPM !

Father Ron Smith
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Father Ron Smith

“The Anglican Church in Sydney is in diabolical trouble. Already battered by the global financial crisis, the diocese is planning further savage spending cuts. The archbishop, Peter Jensen, told the annual synod on Monday: “The financial issues are grave.” – Church of England Newspaper Report – Well, one big saving might come from Archbishop Jensen’s refraining from attending Global South meetings in all corners of the known world – in order to shore up the fundamentalists’ intentions to disable the integrity of the Anglican Communion So much money must have been spent in the past few years on subbing the… Read more »

Counterlight
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Counterlight

While the TEC Sydney comparison is noted, perhaps a crucial difference might be that the attitude of those who elected and consented to the election of the current bishop of New Hampshire toward the rest of the Communion and the world. That attitude was “live and let live,” while the Sydney Diocese consistently took a “chosen remnant among the lost” view of the rest of the world.

Charlotte
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Charlotte

We’re all circling around the actual point at issue here. That is this: Sydney diocese would have to surrender its huge endowment if it did something as far outside the boundaries of mainstream Anglicanism as legitimize lay presidency at the Eucharist — under the present understanding of what it is to be an Anglican. If, on the other hand, loose groupings and multiple non-concentric circles of like-minded churches came to define Anglicanism, then Sydney could have its lay presidency and keep its endowment, too. It has been in Sydney’s interest, therefore, to nurture GAFCON and the breakaway factions in America,… Read more »

Perry Butler
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Perry Butler

A very interesting analysis Charlotte.How old are the Jensen brothers? They seem to have the younger clergy of Sydney in thrall but who is the heir apparent? I imagine both will be gone in 5 yrs time. I get the feeling the next generation are rather light weight…under all the stresses and strain there could be some sort of diocesan implosion!What will the rest of the Australian Church do about diaconal celebration? I imagine only a couple of country evangelical dioceses would be sympathetic.Will the rest of the Church initiate something in the courts, or simply distance themselves on the… Read more »

Robert Ian Williams
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Robert Ian Williams

The Anglican Church constitution ( which was carefully drawn up with Sydney in mind) makes Australian diocese virtually independent entities.

They are safe from liberal innovations…. and as I have pointed out, historically Anglicans have accepted non-episcopally ordained ministry before 1662.