Thursday, November 30, 2006

What do you get when Episcolibs negotiate with themselves?

That sounds like the beginning of a joke, doesn’t it? Well, you get this.

Actually, it is a joke, isn’t it?

The ACN and AAC have already made known they are not amused.
Bishop Schofield Responds to PB Schori (and uses the a-word!)

You might remember that --Schori wrote a little letter to Bishop Schofield inviting him to go away. Well the Bishop of San Joaquin has responded . . and how!

November 28, 2006

The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts-Schori
The Episcopal Church Center
815 Second Ave.
New York, NY 10017

Dear Bishop Schori:

Greetings in the name of our Lord and only Savior Jesus Christ.

Note the use of the word “only.”

I am in receipt of your letter to me and wish to make clear from the outset that I have always remained faithful to my vows as an ordained bishop in the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. At my consecration, I vowed to “guard the faith, unity, and discipline of the Church of God.” I was charged by my chief consecrator to “Feed the flock of Christ committed to [my] charge, guard and defend them in his truth, and be a faithful steward of his holy Word and Sacraments.” I carry out my vow by defending and propagating “the historic Faith and Order” which The Episcopal Church commits to upholding in the preamble of its own Constitution.

Unlike --Schori, who set herself up for that paragraph by her laughable call for +Schofield to submit to “the doctrine, discipline, and worship of Christ as this Church has received them.” Speaking of which . . .

In 2003, the General Convention committed itself to a theological path that is irreconcilable with the Anglican faith this Church has received and has torn the fabric of the entire Communion. The Primates repeated calls for repentance have not been heeded. More than half of the Primates and Provinces of the Anglican Communion have declared themselves to be in impaired or broken communion with The Episcopal Church. Beyond our Anglican Communion, relations throughout Christendom have been profoundly strained. With obvious reference to innovations and novelties introduced by The Episcopal Church, last week Pope Benedict XVI publically stated to Archbishop Rowan Williams that recent developments, “especially concerning ordained ministry and certain moral teachings,” have affected not only the internal relations within the Anglican Communion but also relations between the Anglican Communion and the Catholic Church.

The Episcopal Church, as an institution, is walking a path of apostasy and those faithful to God’s Word are forced to make painful choices.

Wow! A bishop actually using the a-word!

At a diocesan level, the choice is between continuing membership in an unrepentant, apostate institution. . .

He used the a-word again! I love this guy!

or following Holy Scripture and the Anglican faith. Whether or not the Diocese of San Joaquin will continue its institutional membership in The Episcopal Church is a choice that will be made by the people and the clergy and not by me. They will express their collective will as provided in the diocesan governing documents which were approved by the General Convention when the diocese was first admitted to membership.

It is important to point out that the vote at the Diocesan Convention in December 2006 is neither final nor irrevocable. Should the Constitutional amendments being proposed pass the “first reading,” then the diocese will simply have positioned itself to make a final decision at a second consecutive Annual Convention in 2007 if that proves God’s call.

Under our diocesan constitution, the second and final reading is automatically scheduled for October 2007. The setting of the exact date may be advanced or delayed by the bishop. There are some significant factors that would influence such a decision.

First, at the meeting with the leading Primates of the Global South in Virginia, November 15-17 this year, the Global South Primates Steering Committee encouraged us by supporting our faithful stand and commitment to Christ, and they expressed a desire to be of help to us to relieve our untenable position. They have promised assistance, the form of which they will bring to the entire Primates meeting scheduled for Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, in February 2007. In the meantime, in keeping with the goals of the Windsor Report and positioning ourselves to accept the Primates’ help, we are responding to the Primates who called upon us to remain flexible until the details are worked out.

And I think this is the right approach. None of this waiting and staying in TEC until the Second Advent. But at the same time, he is seeking to act in consort with the broader communion, particularly the Primates.

An additional consideration was your letter to me. I believe you have shown wisdom and restraint by not issuing an ultimatum. Instead, you have invited further discussion which could possibly lead to some degree of reconciliation.

That’s a very charitable interpretation of Schori’s letter. But I can’t begrudge him that.

In recognition of what you have proposed, I, too, will exercise restraint by not advancing the date of what could be an historic and final act. However, should proceedings be instituted against me as threatened in your letter, I would not feel obliged to exercise restraint. My prayer is that neither of us takes action which upsets the delicate balance which now exists until the Primates have given us direction at their February 2007 meeting.

And that’s a very charitable way of saying, “Back off!”

Until then, powerful forces will be at work that will ultimately shape the future.

I pray that God’s will be revealed to us all.

You may be assured of my prayers for the Holy Spirit’s wisdom and guidance.

In Christ,

The Rt. Rev. John-David M. Schofield, SSC
Bishop of San Joaquin

Who, along with the Good Bishop Jack Iker, is now my hero. What a courageous steadfast clear-minded bishop!

(Are those oxymorons?)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

No Safe Place: Jordan Hylden on PB Schori

Jordan Hylden over at First Things is at it again with his excellent analysis of the situation in the Episcopal Church.

In his latest missive, he focuses on the statements and intentions of Presiding Bishop Schori. The money paragraph:

…there is good reason to believe she intends nothing less than to run conservatives out of the church, finalize the split between the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion, and set up an international communion of liberal Anglicanism as a rival to Canterbury. In short, from her recent actions and public statements, it is reasonable to infer that her term is likely to tear the Episcopal Church in two—and, what’s more, that that is precisely what she intends.

I’m not so sure she intends to “finalize the split” with the Communion. I think she and those of like mind would rather have it both ways and stay in. But I agree she is certainly preparing for a split with the thinly veiled moves to set up a rival liberal communion. And as for conservatives, the only “reconciliation” she is interested in is unconditional submission . . . or else.

In any case, the Anglican Communion Institute and other apologists for eternal waiting not withstanding, I think it neither safe nor wise for the orthodox to stick around for long in such an environment. Orthodox who still remain in the Episcopal Church, Schori and friends are not the least bit interested in a safe place for you. You are a “problem” to be dealt with.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Saying NO to More “Conversation” and “Dialogue”

It’s about time someone tells the Episcolibs they can’t have it both ways. They can’t act like a bunch of apostate wolves, ram their heterodox programs though, threaten the orthodox, and yet coo about “conversation,” “dialogue,” “holy listening” (That one's my favorite.) with any credibility whatsoever.

And who is the one to tell them but The Good Bishop Jack Leo Iker. And when he told them back in New York that he wasn’t interested in further meetings, he meant it. God bless him!

Christopher Johnson has the text and the usual to-the-point analysis here.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Self-Destruction of the Episcopal Church?

I’ve been wondering this week if we’re witnessing a phenomenon mentioned time and again in Scripture: people who willfully oppose God and His people often act in ways that bring about their destruction. The Psalms talk again and again of those who lay nets for God’s people falling into them themselves. Paul wrote in Romans 1 that willful sin debases even the minds of those who persist in it so that they irrationally destroy themselves.

In a similar vein, Euripides said, “Those whom the gods wish to destroy, they first make mad.”

Are witnessing this in recent events in the Episcopal Church?

At General Convention, TEC bishops and delegates elected the most divisive, most extremist, least qualified candidate available. If they desired to hold the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion together or at least keep bloodshed to a minimum, that surely wasn’t the way to do it. She, Katharine Schori, then promptly alienated Christians with her statements, beginning with calling Jesus “our mother.”

Then this past weekend, she hit a new low with her already infamous remarks about the childbearing and intelligence of Catholics. (Here’s another lampoon of those remarks, from a Catholic wedding no less.) Doesn’t she realize that many Episcopalians feel kinship with the Catholic church? And not a few cast furtive glances across the Tiber. I imagine yet more have decided to jump in and swim across thanks to her remarks. And a great many less Catholic-minded Anglicans find her remarks beyond the pale.

Then “almost immediately,” as a certain English comedy troupe would say, came her letter to +Schofield inviting him to shove off . . . in Christian love, of course. Does she not realize that sort of conduct serves only to alienate further those who are deliberating their future in the Episcopal Church? Did she give any thought to how this sort of vicious attack on the orthodox may use up the remaining patience of the Primates?

Even liberal-minded Anglicans sympathetic to Schori are noting (if quietly) that she is showing little if any political sense. And that’s being charitable. She’s flat out not thinking straight. If there’s a way to act in a more self-destructive manner, it’s hard to imagine it.

We may be witnessing the Episcopal Church bringing about and accelerating its own self-destruction. And in that way, for a change, the Episcopal Church may be downright Biblical.

Housekeeping: As I’m sure many of you will be, I will be quite busy the next few days. So it’s unlikely I’ll post until next week. (But you never know with me.) Until then, have a great Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 20, 2006

BREAKING: - - Schori’s Letter to +Schofield

I won’t repost the text, nor make extensive comments at this time. But the Presiding Heretic of the Episcopal Church has written a letter to the Bishop of San Joaquin that basically says “Submit or else.”

She isn’t wasting any time going after the orthodox, is she? We already see what her idea of “conversation and reconciliation” is.

And her calling +Schofield to submit to “the doctrine, discipline, and worship of Christ as this Church has received them” is just hilarious. How she can miss the irony of that statement is beyond me.

Are we having fun yet?
++Purple Haze Inserts Foot in Mouth.

Wow. Speaking of attitudes of superiority, TEC Presiding Bishop Schori has held her office for less than a month, and she already has said something . . . well . . . incredibly stupid and self-destructive that reveals just a little too much of her superior attitudes:

Q: How many members of the Episcopal Church are there in this country?

A: About 2.2 million. It used to be larger percentagewise, but Episcopalians tend to be better-educated and tend to reproduce at lower rates than some other denominations. Roman Catholics and Mormons both have theological reasons for producing lots of children.

Q: Episcopalians aren’t interested in replenishing their ranks by having children?

A: No. It’s probably the opposite. We encourage people to pay attention to the stewardship of the earth and not use more than their portion.

O. K., let’s tick off the stereotypes and banalities there. Catholics are less educated and produce lots of children ‘cause the Pope tells them to. And having twenty children is bad for the environment and overcrowds the world, you know. So more enlightened people such as us don’t have so many children.

You’ve got to hand it to her though. She managed that much self-destruction in just sixty words. A very economical use of the English language there.

Amy Welborn among others is having a great deal of fun with this. I suspect it very soon won’t be so fun for ++Schori.
Liberals and Giving

Well, well, well. It appears liberals are so busy trying to spend other people’s money on their pet causes that they aren’t giving as much as conservatives when it comes to their own money. And the same can be said of other types of giving.

. . . liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable, including volunteer hours and donated blood.

It’s so much easier to think government and taxpayers ought to carry water for your causes than to do it yourself. After all, why should you give when you think that’s *someone else’s* obligation under your superior enlightened values.

Yes, I’m being a bit caustic here. Enduring for oh so many years the insufferable superior self-righteousness prevalent among liberals and lefties can do that to you.

It’s good to see the vacuousness of that self-righteousness exposed . . . yet again.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Prince Charles Put in His Place

Prince Charles has been making noises about turning his possible (Please! No!) future coronation into a multi-faith claptrap. But, in an unusual statement, the Archbishop of Canterbury has let it be known that he will have none of it. He will fulfill his traditional role of designing the coronation service. And the implication is that it will be Anglican, thank you, with no inter-faith flummery.

Good for ++Rowan!

Now excuse me while I pray for our most gracious Sovereign Lady, the Queen, that the Lord may grant her lllllllong to live.

Hattip to Christopher Johnson.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Wisdom for Today

Presbyterians don’t wear afros.

-- overheard at a youth book study at my church

(Actually, I said it.)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

There's a few in every crowd.

It was really windy today here in Corpus. We had a big north wind gusting up to 55MPH! Why, it even blew in a copy of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram from over 300 miles up north. And when I picked it up, I saw this:

Oh yeah, those Ft. Worth Episcopalians under +Jack Iker just LOVE ++Purple Haze. And I'm sure a lot of Bostonians love the New York Yankees. And Duke is a hotbed of Tarheel fans. And . . .
A Letter from the Bishop of San Joachin

My mind is in too much of a morning fog to comment on this much yet, but the Bishop of San Joachin has written a letter to his diocese in front of the upcoming diocean convention. It is a clear and lucid call for his diocese to leave the Episcopal Church.

Among other things, what we have here is a rare phenomenon: a real MAN of God as bishop.
Global South Primates and Orthodox TEC Bishops About to Meet

This is not new news, but I want to remind you so we can be in prayer together about this.

As previously announced, a group of Global South primates will meet with TEC bishops requesting APO as well as with unspecified other orthodox bishops. They will discuss how to best bring about APO and the aims of the Kigali Communique. No doubt these meetings will serve as part of the preparation for the February Anglican Communion Primates meeting.

These current meetings will be private and confidential. They will apparently begin later today or tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Welcome to the REC!

Stand Firm’s Andy Figueroa joins the Reformed Episcopal Church and tells us why.

Note that (as with me) the REC’s Anglican unity efforts got his attention:

The REC is a leader in bringing forth unity out of the current Anglican diaspora and without compromise has crafted strong alliances intended to ultimately unify Anglicans in the western hemisphere who will uphold the faith that has been received from the saints.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Friday, November 10, 2006

No Safe Place: Marshall’s Law

I really need to focus on a paper on Tertullian. Due in part to applying to a program in Oxford :), I’ve fallen behind. But I submit for your consideration Marshall’s Law:

When liberals can’t get their way through a whole denomination, they defend local autonomy so they can get their way regionally. When they can get their way through a whole denomination, they attack local autonomy so they can impose their way nationally.

I’ll revisit this. But what brings this to mind now are rumblings that the incoming Bishop of South Carolina may have trouble getting consents.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Choir of Liverpool Cathedral

BBC’s Choral Evensong was from Liverpool Cathedral yesterday. I was quite surprised and impressed how excellent the service and choir was. When I think of high Anglican culture, I don’t think of Liverpool. But maybe I should think again. You can listen to the hour long service until next Wednesday by going here and clicking on Choral Evensong.

Here’s more on the choir. It’s interesting to note that Paul McCartney tried – and failed – to join as a boy.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Stupidity Gets Stomped

Yes, I’m referring to the elections. And yes, I’m a Republican. But I fully recognize that Republicans have only themselves to blame for this election.

For all the problems with Iraq and for the usual difficulties of an off-year second term election, the Republicans would have held their own if they weren’t so friggin’ stupid.

They would have probably lost the House, but not as badly if they dealt more proactively with Mark Foley and Jack Abramoff. Speaker Hastert is a nice guy, but his sleepy easy-going nature cost the GOP.

And in the Senate, control hangs in the balance because Burns of Montana didn’t tell Abramoff to take a hike and because Allen of Virginia can’t keep his mouth shut.

Stupidity is bi-partisan. And commit enough of it, and you will lose.

P. S. Seeing "Republican" Lincoln Chaffee go down is almost worth losing the Senate.

P. S. 2 I’m proud to say things went better in my county where, among other things, an attempted beach grab by developers went down in flames.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Gutter Campaigning from the Pulpit

The tactics some have used against Maryland Senate candidate Michael Steele have been from the gutter. For example, some Blacks have thrown oreos at him, implying that old racist put down that he’s Black on the outside, but White on the inside.

But I never expected this from a pulpit no less:

Mr. Coates preached that voting for Mr. Steele would be like voting to free the thief Barabbas instead of Jesus. In the gospels, Pontius Pilate asks a Jewish crowd whether he should free Jesus Christ or Barabbas, and the crowd shouts for Barabbas to be freed, and for Jesus to be crucified.

Mr. Coates implied that black people who vote for Mr. Steele would be deceived just like the crowd that shouted to crucify Jesus. He said people who supported Barabbas could be called “Barablicans,” and people who were for Jesus could be called “Jesuscrats.”

“Can’t you just see the commercials that were designed to endear Barabbas to the crowd?” he said. “I can just see [Barablicans] well dressed, well groomed [and] holding a puppy.”

The reference to one of Mr. Steele’s TV ads, which have featured Mr. Steele holding a puppy, drew laughter from the congregation and prompted several worshipers to stand and applaud.

Such an abuse of the pulpit for gutter politics is an outrage.

There’s a subtle racism that gives Black preachers a pass when they engage in blatant politicking from the pulpit. But such shameful, vicious smearing from a pulpit is beyond the pale no matter what the skin color of the guilty preacher.

Shame on the so-called Reverend Coates for his shameless abuse of his office and pulpit.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Muslims and the Holocaust

As noted by Ruth Gledhill, the Muslim Council of Britain is catching some well deserved grief for boycotting Holocaust Memorial Day.

This is far from an isolated instance. Muslims have a sorry record when it comes to Anti-Semitism, including the Holocaust. Recently we’ve heard the President of Iran’s holocaust denials. But something you rarely hear about, not even on the History Channel (which so focuses on Hitler and WW2 that wags have dubbed it the Hitler Channel) is that a key Muslim leader supported Hitler and the Holocaust.

Here’s the basics on “Hitler’s Mufti” here and here.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

BREAKING: Bishop of Rochester Says Anglican Split Inevitable

Here’s the story from the BBC.

I would like to see the whole interview, but these are remarkable statements coming from such an influential bishop.
Today is the 5th of November.

After the enormities of yesterday, it’s time to get back to conducting the Lord’s worship properly and in order.

To assist you in doing so, here are the propers to be used yearly upon the Fifth Day of November for the happy Deliverance of the King, and the Three Estates of the Realm, from the most Traiterous and Bloudy intended Massacre by Gun-Powder.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Heresy is one thing. Terrible tat is quite another.

It’s bad enough that the new Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church is a heretic. But now, even worse, she has committed the unforgivable sin of . . . terrible tat. Her vestments were silly and hardly Christian. They were more appropriate for a wizard than a bishop of Christ’s Church. Those of strong disposition may view some photos here.

Not only that, but there was liturgical dance . . . lots of liturgical dance.

Fortunately I missed most of it. And when they were bringing so many offerings up to the Lord’s Table, it looked like a potluck would break out right then and there, it made me hungry and I went out to lunch.

Friday, November 03, 2006

On the Presiding Heretic Bishop of the Episcopal Church . . . or not

Although it may seem so, I’m not ignoring the beginning of the new TEC Presiding Bishop’s term. I just haven’t felt I have much to contribute. Her recent and heretical statements leave me with little to say or add.

But William Cripe sums things up well: “With her statements the head of the Episcopal Church in America has formally revealed that she is an apostate and a heretic.”

And Matt Kennedy has an excellent analysis of her statements and the issues they raise concerning “exclusivity and salvation.”

As for me, I’m focusing more on my application to a certain program in Oxford. :)

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Dean of Bangor Bans Lord Carey

This is one of those mornings when so much interesting is happening in the Anglican world that I hardly know where to focus.

But this takes the cake: the Dean of Bangor, The Very Liberal Reverend Alun Hawkins, has banned the past Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, from Bangor Cathedral for supposedly being “divisive.”

I’m at a loss for words, but “extraordinary” is a very Anglican and appropriate one here. So much for “tolerance.”

Ruth Gledhill adds a lot of color (and a great cartoon!) here.

(Hmmm, I wonder if I can get banned in Bangor.)

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

John Kerry and His Vile Comment about Iraq

I am beside myself over this odious comment John Kerry made about our soldiers in Iraq:

“You know, education, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don’t, you get stuck in Iraq.”

He has so far refused to apologize, calling it “a botched joke.” I watched the full comment on T.V., and it sure as hell didn’t look like a joke to me. But if he was joking, what an awful thing to joke about. If he was joking, that only makes matters worse.

There are a good number of well-educated young men I personally know who have served or are serving in Iraq. One, I’ve been instant messaging with the past few nights. And Kerry’s comment outrages me. I had to restrain myself from making the headline to this post “John Kerry, Go to Hell!!” or worse. But for someone who would make such a comment to try to score political points, then refuse to apologize and say it was just “a botched joke,” maybe such a headline would be appropriate.

More here and any number of places.

UPDATE: The troops in Iraq have noticed Kerry’s comments . . . and have a wonderful comeback.