Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Some common sense about the Episcopal row
My comment (sorry, I rant a bit). From The Enlightenment Project via MCJ.
Reminds me of what a liberal used to be -- fair-minded and an independent thinker, with some firm ideas about how people are to be treated. Nice to know there are still some out there.
And for fairness’ sake:

Not nearly as radical as you think
Fr Tony Clavier on his denomination, answering the Bishop of Down and Dromore’s legitimate objections to some doings in it, which Fr C says are not representative. From Covenant.

Just like I’ve come to the conclusion that winning or losing the row won’t affect nearly any Episcopalians in any way, I think when that church stabilises you’ll have something surprisingly orthodox and liturgically conservative, wrong about some issues and because of that separated from Catholicism — the Protestant Global South majority of Anglicans are separated brethren for different reasons but both are about private judgement — but with more in common with me than with John Spong. (Rather like the conservative kids and old liberals in the Roman communion.)

Protestant private judgement inevitably, eventually dominoes into unbelief (‘Calvinism shatters into Unitarianism’ as Archbishop Robert Morse says) but most Protestants, mainline and evangelical, are a long way off from that.

Roman and Orthodox dialogue with either the Episcopalians or the Protestant Global South Anglicans (the future Anglican Communion?) probably wouldn’t bring about reunion but at least could ‘detoxify’ each side’s view of the other so each could recognise the other as Christian. (As Fulton Sheen famously said most people don’t hate Rome; often rightly they hate what they think it is.)

Misrepresenting the other side (‘All Episcopalians are apostates!’ or ‘The Africans have ICBMs aimed at our church!’ — somebody actually referred to the latter’s new American bishops that way) reminds me of the ‘clown Masses’ in conservative Roman Catholic rhetoric. There probably hasn’t been one in a Roman church since about 1970 when even the dimmest innovator realised how foolish it is and besides clowns scare many kids.

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