Tuesday, December 18, 2012

ACANZP's Christmas Message to NZ: Was Jesus Gay?

Once again the effective message of the Anglican church in NZ to NZ is being led by St Matthew's in the City and its "Let's be cute, comic, and crass" billboard. With a press release here and a press release there we have the Anglican Christmas message for 2012, Was Jesus Gay?

I am not going to show the billboard here but if you haven't seen it already on the net or in your local paper, it is here.

Memo to our Archbishops: don't bother with your Christmas message this year. It's too late!

A commenter on Taonga (where there is a great interview of ++Rowan Williams) makes a good point,

"Please if the Anglicans really do care about their church please let them do something about expelling Clay Nelson and Glynn Cardy (St Matthews Auckland) due to the blasphemy of our almighty Lord Jesus Christ."

Here's the thing. Do our bishops, do Anglicans through these islands care enough about our church and the message it gives to do anything about Glynn Cardy and Clay Nelson? Year after year we have these billboards which upset Christians, convey a false gospel message and generate a lack of confidence in the authority of our leadership.

And NOTHING happens.

So, what could be done to make this the last?

Incidentally, in the secular world there is decent competition for Glynn and Clay, should they need to ply their publicity trade elsewhere if the Taonga commenter's request is answered.

Our Lord Jesus Christ came at Christmas to be Saviour of all, not to be the object of quaint speculation about what his hormones were doing or to generate mirth about the possibility that God was a better lover than Joseph (a past billboard). Glynn and Clay's obligation as ministers of the gospel is not to get people chattering over their coffee cups about whether Jesus was gay and if he was, does it matter.

Their obligation is to present Jesus as Saviour and Lord.

Not one of their billboards has ever done that.

Jesus can take any questions about anything, including his sexuality (though he must get confused, one moment it's questions about how many children he and Mary Magdalene have had, nek minit it's about which team he bats for). Questions about Jesus being gay are quite old hat and well worked through. The point of opposition to the billboard is not about avoiding such questions (if people feel pressed to ask them).

The point is to oppose unelected, unappointed clergy being the effective spokespersons for our whole church with a message our church is not agreed is the key Christmas message we want to communicate as the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia.


Anonymous said...

This is simply the natural extension of Tec a-theology to NZ.
Glynn Cardy is not a faithful follower of Jesus Christ. He is a sad lost soul who should be trembling before God.

Pray for him.


Anonymous said...

Hear! Hear!
Unfortunately there is an habitual reluctance on the part of the Bishop of Auckland and the Synod of the Diocese of Auckland to prevent St Matthews in the City (and its Vicar)presenting itself as "the voice" of the Anglican Church in Auckland. From the Bishop of Auckland we hear only a deafening silence!

Zane Elliott said...

I've written to +Ross before about these billboards, he has trivialised the matter to a 'personal theological disagreement with Mr Cardy.' He refuses to take any action and Glynn laughs about it every year. Peter, he has 'called you out' over these billboards before practically begging you to take a Title D against him. It is ridiculous that this kind of separatist behaviour is acceptable.

I guess it's time to write my annual 'Christmas letter' to +Ross and to cross my fingers and hope this year he may take some action.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Zane
I am taking a different line here - not asking for "discipline" but for "policy" - who is in charge of publicity in our church?

MichaelA said...

I don't know your local situation there, but it takes courage for you to speak out like this Peter, and our prayers are with you.

The first duty on a christian leader is to witness publicly to the truth - even though it often may seem that it is having no effect, we don't see everything the Holy Spirit is doing.

Zane Elliott said...

Hi Peter, I know Michael Hewat tried to ask the same question this year at Easter time after the claims that Jesus wasn't sinless, wasn't raised from the dead and that it was all just "spin" from the Church. I think +Philip Richardson overseas the group responsible for our communications/media but he pretty much defended the billboard as free speech and one of the opinions in the ACANZP.

I hope something can be done soon, all these billboards create is disunity and frustration!

Joshua Bovis said...

Reminds me of a saying, "One cannot give away what one does not have". I am not surpised at this billboard- the gospel is not believed nor taught by Cardy, so why expect the apostolic gospel to be proclaimed on a billboard?

Bryden Black said...

Thanks Peter for your stirling post. As it seeks to address the issue of "policy", I'd also advocate that any such policy on policy be undergirded by some decent theological orthodoxy - rather than mere heterodox opinions.

Such a request has nothing to do with either Latitudinarians or "broad tents". Rather, it seeks to hold all ordained clergy to those clear statements of Anglican Faith and Life as displayed in the first three Sections of the RCD of the Covenant, and to which our GS was all too prepared to sign up - but for the Fourth Section.

Yet I fear that just as we witnessed only "drift" from any corporate leadership re the Covenant, so too we shall witness yet more drift in this case too ... Please Lord prove me wrong!

Mr. Mcgranor said...

Have you all figured it out yet?

Father Ron Smith said...

" I think +Philip Richardson overseas the group responsible" - Zane Elliot

What do you mean here, exactly? Is Bishop Philip 'overseas' or does he oversee the group (espicope)?