Thinking Anglicans

Opinion – 19 September 2018

There was an ecumenical conversation on the Eucharist, organised by Liverpool Parish Church, on 8 September with introductory contributions from the Anglican Bishop of Liverpool, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Liverpool and the Chair of the Liverpool Methodist District. The texts of their talks are available here. The Bishop of Liverpool has also published his contribution on his own website: The presence of Jesus.

Jo Kershaw Church Times Keeping the Catholic flame burning
“Let’s not lose the gift of laughter”

Kelvin Holdsworth Who would true valour sing?

Jeremy Morris Viamedia.News Time for “A New Evangelism”?

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Roderick GillisRowland WateridgeTim ChestertonHighchurchwomannotflourishingLaurie Roberts Recent comment authors
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Laurie Roberts
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Laurie Roberts

I enjoyed reading Jo Kershaw and found her piece inspiring. I have been wondering if the Catholic spirit and life would be blessed by greater ‘ use’ of the Jesus Prayer.

Highchurchwomannotflourishing
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Highchurchwomannotflourishing

Really enjoyed Kelvin Holdsworth’s piece, especially as I’m involved in a Facebook discussion on the Telegraph’s article on Bishop Rachel Treweek.

Roderick Gillis
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Roderick Gillis

Re: ‘The Presence of Jesus’, regarding Holy Communion as a true ‘soul food’, I have not, lo these many years ( and notwithstanding the polemics and controversies of his epoch) found anything to surpass the views on Eucharist expressed by John Cosin. ( See: More & Cross, article no. 203). ” For the body and blood of our Saviour are not only fitly represented by the elements, but also by virtue of His institution really offered to all by them, and so eaten by the faithful mystically and sacramentally; whence it is, that He truly is and abides in us,… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
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Rowland Wateridge

Thus far it seems that I am alone in feeling dismay that Kelvin Holdsworth rejects the singing of John Henry Newman’s “Firmly I believe and truly” in his cathedral. How far can one go tinkering with, or abandoning, hymns on perceived grounds that they aren’t ‘inclusive’? We declare and affirm the words in the Nicene Creed “and was made man”. Newman wasn’t putting any different meaning to the word ‘manhood’.

Roderick Gillis
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Roderick Gillis

“We declare and affirm the words in the Nicene Creed ‘and was made man’. We could declare and affirm, ‘became a human being’. Pairs very nicely with the change from “one substance with the father” to ” of one being with the father” (ICET) There, fixed it. ( :

Rowland Wateridge
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Rowland Wateridge

We aren’t discussing an unauthorised revision of the Nicene Creed but the words of Newman’s hymn – actually an extract from ‘The Dream of Gerontius’ – and a fervent statement of faith. My suggestion (perhaps radical to some TA contributors) is that both should be respected and left alone!

Roderick Gillis
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Roderick Gillis

Actually, you introduced the Creed into the conversation. In doing so, you shone a light on the wider problem of the ongoing issue of inclusive language, and the persistent use of non-inclusive language in liturgy–not just in old hymns but in other texts as well. Just as the ICET version of the Nicene Creed (an authorized version) has made some changes in language i.e. substance to being, so the text of the Creed could be further updated to make it more inclusive. The Greek text of the Creed i.e.,  ‘ἐνανθρωπήσαντα’ or ‘took human form’, provides a way in. However, the… Read more »

Tim Chesterton
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Rod, are you going to do the same thing with the Gospel of John, which is completely built around the Father/Son analogy?

Roderick Gillis
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Roderick Gillis

There are problems with all the Gospels, Tim. The biggest problem with St. John pertains to antisemitism. . What I am going to do? Better question:what is the church is going to do?We have to find a way to acknowledge tradition while making our liturgical life honest, truth telling, and aware of the experience of the whole people of God. Trying to shut down the discussion about what we have to do because it is ‘creedal’ or ‘biblical’ is not a solution. It is part of the problem.It sells our theological problem solving abilities as faithful and just people short.… Read more »

Tim Chesterton
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Sadly, yes.

Roderick Gillis
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Roderick Gillis

Why so sad, Tim? For at least the past sixty years Christians have been engaged in a dialectic involving our resources (scripture and the like) and ‘updating’. It is important that there is critical reflection on scriptures, especially their use in a given liturgical instance. The problem with antisemitism and St. John is acknowledged, for example, in the rubrics of the Canadian Good Friday liturgy prior to the passion narrative (BAS. p.309). My question remains: is that sufficient? With regard to this thread and gender inclusive language, one needs to parse things out. Older hymns can be replaced with newer… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
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Rowland Wateridge

Further to my reply to your earlier email largely about the Nicene Creed, yes, I entirely agree that the sermon or homily should be used to explain to adults, in the same way as I experienced it in children’s services long ago.

Roderick Gillis
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Roderick Gillis

I was referring to the homily/sermon as an exercise in adult education. While the whole gambit of the Christian tradition (including the distinctive Anglican aspects) could be included in such an approach,I was thinking primarily of the readings of the day, most especially the Gospel of the day. After all, the lectionary normally sets up the framework of what must be proclaimed. The homily/sermon is an opportunity to look at some of the critical issues relevant to one’s audience. Additionally, I was thinking of the specific ways in which adults learn, how to effectively engage people with a variety of… Read more »

Rowland Wateridge
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Rowland Wateridge

Actually, I started this conversation and ‘introduced’ the Nicene Creed to make the point, as it seems to me (traditional C of E Anglican), that Newman’s hymn and the Creed say the same thing. How far do we go or, for that matter, should we go in imposing our own ideas? I have heard an elderly C of E retired priest covering an interregnum preach to a congregation about “wanting our own way” in liturgy (i.e., to the exclusion of the opposite ‘option’ – in that case the C of E BCP). I have equally encountered a C of E… Read more »