Wednesday, December 19, 2012

My Prediction for the Next Presiding Bishop of TEC

[UPDATED UPDATE] I gladly acknowledge, courtesy of a commenter below, that the published sermon of ++Jefferts Schori (in Jerusalem, Christmas Eve, 2012) is a much, much better example of how one readily uses the name of Jesus, acknowledges the God we meet in Jesus Christ, and the work of God made manifest through the birth and life of Jesus. Must have been reading here ... :)

Thus a key word used in my original post, "bewildered" remains in force: why does one who can preach Jesus refer so little to Jesus in a public statement about Christmas? Answer: it puzzles me!

[UPDATED] This is my prediction: someone who can readily say the name of Jesus.

Even the most way out there to the left of Spong TECian is surely going to vote for a new Presiding Bishop (due 2015) who can say and write the name of our Lord Jesus Christ without seeming reluctance or reserve.

++Katharine Jefferts Schori has written both an Advent message and a Christmas message for 2012 in which the name of Jesus occurs once.

I note this not to excoriate her or her messages. I am too bewildered to do that! Especially by the lack of mention of the baby's name in the Christmas message.

She is who she is and she has written what she has written with (as I recall) a certain consistency with previous years. The soup maker who consistently serves up thin gruel is not likely to suddenly add meat on the bones and thick croutons to the fare.

But I do wonder if the average thinking Episcopalian does not raise an eyebrow while drinking in these messages and look ahead to the future with a quiet determination to elect someone who can say the name of Jesus more frequently to be their next Presiding Bishop.

77 comments:

Bryan Owen said...

I hope your prediction is right, Peter. But I won't be holding my breath.

liturgy said...

Peter, this is one of your strangest excoriations of the Presiding Bishop. Did you just not read what she wrote, or listen to what she said? Or are you seeking a new award of most consistently against Katharine Jefferts Schori whatever she says?

Advent Blessings

Bosco

Tim Chesterton said...

Actually, Peter, the Advent message does mention the name of Jesus. Once, and marginally, but it is there.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi All, especially Bosco,
Yes, I read the Advent message too quickly. There is a mention in that message. I stand by my bewilderment of a lack of mention of Jesus in the Christmas message, to say nothing of a strange focus on 'the birth'.
Have updated the post.
P

Mr. Mcgranor said...

The Episcopalian church in the U.S.; is as what i have understood you all to be. Although many of you elsewhere have claimed that the Protestant Episcopal Church U.S.A. is too liberal with their secular humanism.

Shawn said...

"Or are you seeking a new award of most consistently against Katherine Jefferts Schori whatever she says?"

Well, that would be an award worth having!

Shawn said...

Forced myself to read her messages.

A load of New Age fluff fit for the world of Oprah and Deepak Chopra.

Daniel Weir said...

Perhaps Anglicans outside the US don't realize that the folks who seem to mention Jesus most often here are bigots. Not everyone who says Lord....

Bryden Black said...

If one lives by abstract principles, grounded more on modernist Enlightenment values than the hard core realities of Incarnational history, then of course one's "message" is going to be exactly as presented by the PB.

On the other hand, when a certain Karl Barth himself encountered the kinds of military despair and fear Isaiah is contextually indicating, his response warranted his expulsion by Hitler. His own response thereafter (to his students) was "exegesis, exegesis, exegesis!" This "message" has quite simply never heard this exegetical word at all, either re Isaiah or the FG. One wonders of course whether she even knows Jesus' 'address' (the ref is to Jn 1:38-9, and based on my personal experience of the lady).

Tim Chesterton said...

I do agree with your main point, Peter. The PB has been charged at her ordination with proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ. These are curiously gospel-less messages in which Jesus, even if he is named, seems curiously marginal.

Shawn said...

Daniel,

Bigots according to who? What is your definition of a bigot? And can you give us an example?

Anonymous said...

I agree it seems rather thin Peter..but who is it aimed at? It reminded me,especially in its brevity, with the sort of thing you find as the Thought for the Day column in a local newspaper ( is it the same downunder?) where a local vicar is asked to say something for a largely unchurched/"pagan" readership in a couple of hundred words.In that situation tentativeness and a "Tell it slant" ( Stevie Smith) approach sometimes is better than the full monty ,so to speak, but it is rather weak gruel if it is aimed specifically at Episcopalians by their PB.
Perry UK
ps happy Christmas to you all from a very frosty Canterbury.

MichaelA said...

Last year the Queen's Christmas speech created quite a stir, particularly when compared to those of some of her most prominent prelates.

Her speech did set a very impressive example of how to get across the Christian message of Christmas in a way that was simple, sincere, and not at all "preachy". See http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/damianthompson/100135229/the-queens-christian-faith-puts-our-bishops-to-shame/

Kurt said...

Well said, Father Dan!

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY

Shawn said...

Kurt,

Far from being "well said" Daniel's post seemed to me to be itself an expression of bigotry, the standard urban liberal prejudice against anyone who still takes Scripture and Jesus seriously, and who abide by values despised by liberal elites, whose guiding principle is not God's Word written and incarnate, but the politically correct legalism of Cultural Marxism.

Bryden Black said...

Thank you Daniel Weir for your take from across the pond. And I myself shall take it seriously.

But then what else might one expect in the Land of the Free, founded around the time of the mass cultural expression of the Enlightenment in liberté, égalité, fraternité? What else therefore might one expect when each and every opinion is allowed to be held as equally an expression of ‘truth’? And who’s to say No?! Who’s to stamp an alternative authority upon such individualism?

Curiously, it is those who still, despite this mass cultural undertow, adhere to some form of catholicity - like the RCC and Eastern Orthodox Churches and some Anglicans - who are able to address this reality. Although to be sure, even here the acids of postmodernity erode fast enough: some say the US RCC is now a mere denomination; TEC is ... well; what?!

So; I take you seriously in your assessment Dan. Yet I also take seriously the matrix of such “bigotry”. If only then to ask each of us to look in the mirror. For wherein might we not slip into such a culturally prone stance? I.e. what IS our own source of legitimacy?!

Paul Powers said...

At least one blogger has noted that +KJS is young enough to complete a second term before she reaches the mandatory retirement age of 72.

Daniel Weir said...

Shawn,
To answer your question and perhaps change the opinion of me expressed in your second response:
I count among the bigots, although that might not be the best label, those who believe that if a woman doesn't fight aganst the rapist to it wasn't legitimate rape; those who think the end of mandatory school prayer or the legalization of same-sex marriage is to blame for the murders in Newtown; those who try to stop Muslims from building Mosques or community centers; and those who said that Gen. Petraeus might be excused fr his affair because she was an attractive woman and they were out in the middle of nowhere. The people who expressed these views were pastors and active members of churches.

BTW, my understanding of the Presiding Bishop's messages is that the intended audience was Episcopalians who we could assume know whose birth we celebrate and whose coming we await.

liturgy said...

To be fair, Peter, particularly as your blog's title focuses closer to home, I look forward to your using your same criteria of this post in reviewing, with commensurate vigour, the Christmas message from our three primates (out now) - particularly as the choice of our next primate is significantly closer than for TEC.

Advent blessings

Bosco

The Underground Pewster said...

"...folks who seem to mention Jesus most often here are bigots" -DW

Put me down as a bigot!

Daniel Weir said...

It might be worth noting that the Christmas Message from the Canadian Primate mentions the Christ Child, but does not name him. I guess Canadian Anglicans don't need to reminded of Jesus' name.

Peter Carrell said...

Your erstwhile blogging colleague, Bosco, has indeed noticed the deficit in the South Seas message and will be drawing attention to it. However, in a spirit of fairness, he will also mention the raging storms which were the context of the writing of the message!

Peter Carrell said...

Oh dear, Daniel, noting Bosco's note above, is there a Pacific Rim heresy taking hold of the Communion?

Peter Carrell said...

However, Daniel, on closer reading of ++Fred's message: he has a focus on the person of Jesus which is commendable.

Kurt said...

“Far from being ‘well said’ Daniel's post seemed to me to be itself an expression of bigotry…”—Shawn

Well, Shawn, I’d guess that you don’t have to deal with the clowns from Redneckistan as often as Father Daniel and I do. Even in liberal, urban America, there are pockets of yahoos. You’re correct, though, they’re not Marxists; they usually hail/heil from the Fascist end of the political spectrum. Believe me, I know what I am talking about.

Kurt Hill
Expecting snow in
Brooklyn, NY

MichaelA said...

"Perhaps Anglicans outside the US don't realize that the folks who seem to mention Jesus most often here are bigots."

Sorry, but this comment was just hilarious, saying far more about the author than anyone else.

I'd put it on a par with "I'm not prejudiced, I just don't like anyone from [nominate place of your choice]"!

Shawn said...

Kurt,

The "clowns" of "Redneckistan" you speak of means my family, who hail from the Southern Appalachians.

Bigotry is bigotry, no matter how you try and justify it.

That they do not agree with the extreme left socialism and cultural Marxism of urban liberals dies not make them bigots or fascists. It makes them sane.

It is always telling to me that in more than twenty years of experience in various churches, the most virulent bigotry and hate I have heard, read and personally experienced comes from those who loudly proclaim how enlightened and tolerant they are compared to others.

Peter Carrell said...

Moderated comment from Shawn:

Daniel,

Well, horrors like Newton are the result of the liberal left's 60 year war against orthodox Christianity, the traditional family and traditional moral values. Secular education is a failed experiment in liberal social engineering. There is good reason to be concerned and opposed to the Islamification of the West. And I am not ashamed of the name of Jesus.

Guess that makes me a redneck!
[The omitted sentence begins with "We all know": by the nature of what follows in your sentence, this is not the case. "We all" do not know any such thing! I am not prepared to put up a sentence which gives a reason for a third person's action which is not demonstrated by evidence to date. Your speculation may be reasonable for other reasons, but we have seen here that speculation about others leads to more heat than light in exchanges here.]

Shawn said...

Hi Peter,

What speculation? I stated a well known fact provable by her own public words.

On the other hand accusations of "bigotry" against hundreds of thousands of people who are not ashamed of the name of Jesus and against entire regions of people and their culture are not only speculative, but frankly ludicrous.

Yet you allow those comments to stand.

Light will not be shed by covering up the truth while allowing liberal bigots free reign to vent.

That is woefully inconsistent.

Why does your moderation give more freedom to liberals to vent any speculative accusations they like, while slamming evangelicals for far less and simply being honest?

Shawn said...

By the way, exactly how does allowing liberals to repeatedly post accusations of hate and bigotry against conservative Christians and other peoples families help to create less heat?

Note how civil the debates have been recently until you allowed posts from Daniel and Kurt to stand.

Once again the problem is not my posts, but your lack of consistent and fair moderation.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Shawn,
I am always learning on the matter of moderation.
For my part I distinguish between general epithets spread around: 'This crowd are bigots', 'That lot are cultural Marxists' and specific speculations about individuals, 'X says this and this but we all know X does not mean it' or 'Y is nothing less than a bigot/cultural Marxist/heathen when he says A, B, and C.'

The epithet 'bigot', as discussed here, has actually shed light on a situation in America which some (such as myself) are learning about. There has been argument about whether that term is or isn't appropriate, but mostly those arguments have made good points and the debate has been, in my view, illuminating.

To proceed from that debate to make a charge against an individual which (in my view) is unwarranted because (as far as I am aware) no claim by that individual to be really a cultural Marxist has been made moves into moderation territory.

But I take your point, or implied point re 'bigot': it is such a loaded word that I should not have accepted the comment, as is, which first used that word in this thread.

Shawn said...

Hi Peter,

Sorry about the tone of my initial response to you. I do realize that it's a difficult job.

I'm still not sure my understanding of her particular ideological worldview was speculative. If it looks like a duck.....

But really it's just not worth wasting my time or yours over it.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Shawn
All appreciated!
Have a great Christmas.
We must have a coffee in the new year.
P

carl jacobs said...

Peter

I am curious what you think you have learned about bigotry in the US as a result of this thread. Daniel Weir provided an eclectic list which he stated is perhaps not best labeled bigotry. I think his evaluation is correct. His list is a compendium of ignorance and poor thinking and inconsistency and (yes) some bigotry. But it is far too much a mixed bag to represent anything specific.

In addition, there is no location in the US more insular, more convinced of its own righteousness and moral superiority than NYC. At all. Anywhere. There is a reason they call most of the rest of the country 'fly-over country.' It's because that's where people from NYC won't live. All of that is on display in Kurt's comments. "Clowns." "Yahoos." "Redneckistan." "Hail/heil." "Fascist." It was an exceptionally revealing comment about bigotry - just not the alleged bigotry that is the subject of the comment.

You may have learned something about NYC. You haven't learned much about bigotry anywhere else in the US.

carl

Daniel Weir said...

The causes of the Newtown murders are far more complex than any of us can imagine. Blaming it on the liberal left is just as wrong as blaming it on the NRA.

Whatever threat some Muslims pose, in this country freedom of religion is a right and Muslims have a right to build Mosques.

Father Ron Smith said...

So sad, Peter, that you continue - even in the Season of Advent - to excoriate the Presiding BNishop of TEC by your comments on her infrequent use of the Nanme of Jesus. She actually lives with the reality of the redemptive power of Jesus in her own life, in her ministry of reconciliation of ALL people to God - through the power of Jesus in her ordination.

Faith is sometimes better practised than talked about with oft-repeated (and sometimes, sadkly, mindless) repetition of the Holy Name - as if constant incantation could ever take the place of true discipleship.

Thenk God that God is Love - not judgement by rote.

Anonymous said...

Recently we had one of the best and most theologically exacting exchanges I have read or participated in on this site, on the subject of women's ordination. A deep knowledge of biblical exegesis, patristic theology and logic was demonstrated, and nobody on either side of the issue appeared or was called a fool, bigot or any other epithet, however much they disagreed. And indeed, nobody showed him- or herself to be a fool or in any way discourteous. It was a model of how believing orthodox Christians should debate.
Recently I gave up on this site because I was sick of the way it was hijacked by ad hominem trolling remarks by one or two individuals (who have their own websites and perhaps too much free time) attacking people's motives or character. There are plenty of sites where people of liberal religious persuasion can post, but these comments have neither theological depth nor intellectual rigour and are simply grandstanding - the digital equivalent of chanting derogatory remarks at a football match. I have learnt nothing from their contributions except their ignorance of evangelical and patristic theology and their inability to engage in serious theological debate with evangelical and orthodox scholars. Their animus I already knew about.

If ADU is going to be taken over once again by religious liberals because Peter (in the words of LBJ)allows this external micturation into his encampment, then I must bid a reluctant adieu.

Martin

Peter Carrell said...

I am prepared, Martin, to post comments against moi to show that I am willing to take a 'serve' if I am perceived to have given a 'serve'.

But I take your point. Such renderings can, nevertheless, be offensive to other readers so I shall review even further what I publish in the way of comments.

PS You haven't seen what I haven't let through!

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron,
I think I have said this before but I will say it again. ++Jefferts Schori is no ordinary primate. She is the leader of one of the leading churches in the Anglican Communion. Around the sun of TEC, a number of Anglican planets orbit (including our own ACANZP, at least at times - other times I think we are toddling off around our own parallel universe). So if TEC's presiding bishop cannot bring her self to much utter the name of Jesus then that is of interest as I think Anglicans Down Under ought to be aware of where they might end up if they orbit too close to the sun.

Your adulatory comments are fine, but I make the point that they apply to Ghandhi and the Dalai Lama, neither of whom pretend(ed) to be Christian.

Daniel Weir said...

The absence of the Name in the PB's two messages is hardly evidence that she cannot bring herself to say it. Having met her and heard her share some of her own story and heard her preach, I can assure you that she can and does speak of Jesus.

From my location in the liberal Northeast, but not New York City, I don't see TEC as a sun around which other members of the Communion cluster. We are all, to some extent, influenced by what Anglicans do in other parts of the Communion, judging those influences as good or bad according to our theological and social locations.

Interesting to see the comments about NYC folks' attitude to people in the middle of the country. The PB was diocesan in Nevada, hardly a liberal stronghold and proposed moving some of the Church Center's staff to offices in the Midwest. I think she is aware of the insularity of NYC, but also of the insularity of other places as well. One of what seems to be at risk in the Communion - and elsewhere - is our ability to listen to those with whom we disagree.

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Daniel,
I can assure you that where TEC goes some of my colleagues Down Under will follow. If the Communion becomes a solar system circling around TEC (or, perhaps more likely, an elliptical system with two foci, TEC and CofE), then a number of Anglicans Down Under will be relieved that Africa and Asia do not figure more prominently in the shape of the Communion.

I appreciate that the PB is different to her public pronouncements in various ways. I remain bewildered, notwithstanding your and other comments here, as to why her talk of 'the birth' is not more readily associated with the name of Jesus.

carl jacobs said...

Daniel Weir

One of what seems to be at risk in the Communion - and elsewhere - is our ability to listen to those with whom we disagree.

Yes, being called a fascist clownish yahoo from Redneckistan makes me ever so willing to listen. I doubt Kurt even realized he was engaging in ad hominem. I suspect he was just accurately expressing the world as he sees it. Hence my comment. It is irritating to be called a bigot by one so clearly standing on the pedestal of his own prejudices.

carl

Daniel Weir said...

I find this post confusing. Unless I am missing something, I don't think Carl posted on this thread until after Kurt's comment. If I have that right, Kurt's comment could not have been aimed at Carl. Kurt's comment may have been intemperate, but seeing it as a personal attack seems unnecessary. I would say that in spite of differences on some matters, Kurt and I both take our commitment to Jesus the Christ very seriously, as do others posting here, as does our Presiding Bishop.

Peter Carrell said...

Dear All,
I am going to draw a line under where this correspondence has gotten to.
Without deeming anyone to have drawn an appropriate conclusion, or an inappropriate one, this charge and counter charge is going nowhere I judge to be useful direction.
I am prepared to consider publishing comments which take the discussion in a new direction.

liturgy said...

I hope that announcing the “ADU (Anglican Down Under) orthodoxy quotient” will take the discussion in a new direction. It certainly takes away the subjectivity!

It works like this: take the number of uses of the name “Jesus”, divide that by the total number of words. Minimum possible 0; maximum possible 1. The higher the score, the more the name “Jesus” is used, obviously the more orthodox.

Here are some results for the ADU orthodoxy quotient for recent discussions:

Archbishops’ Christmas message (Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia) number of uses of the name “Jesus”: 0; total number of words: 1,043 ADU orthodoxy quotient: 0

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori Advent + Christmas message (TEC) number of uses of the name “Jesus”: 1 ; total number of words: 632 ADU orthodoxy quotient: 0.0016

St Matthew in the City Auckland Christmas message billboard message number of uses of the name “Jesus”: 1; total number of words: 8 ADU orthodoxy quotient: 0.13

Blessings
Bosco

Anonymous said...

Peter, if you want your blog to serve a useful purpose, in the way that I think Titusonenine still does, you will need to rethink what kind of discussion you are trying to promote, and among whom you wish to promote it, as well as banning any personal comments or drive-by shootings. Do you need to debate every commenter as well?
It is pointless trying to include everyone. I already know very well what liberals think, as does anyone who visits 'Thinking Anglicans', 'Episcopal Cafe' or Ron Smith's blog. And I know very well what Ron Smith, Kurt Hill and Daniel Weir think of evangelicals. There is little or no point in someone like me commenting on their blogs becaue I don't share their basic liberal assumptions about theological authority and biblical interpretation. But as an evangelical Anglican I am ready to engage with and learn from the kind of things that informed commenters like Bryden, Shawn, Rosemary, Mark, MichaelA and others, including your good self, can contribute. (And I have to say it was Ron Smith's recent absence that allowed a fruitful exchange of different views to go on here without character attacks.)
Without a clear focus of purpose and a discipline over comments, and who comments, you will soon be hijacked by recriminations.

Martin

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Bosco,
Interesting new direction.
I have it on good authority that ADU is also interested in 'how' the name of Jesus is used.
I think I have made it clear that the Canadian message offers a good model of using the name of Jesus in a good way! All is not lost ... :)

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Martin,
Clearly, from the variety of comments I have been receiving, I need to scrutinise Fr Ron's comments much more closely than I have been.
I think I get what you are saying, but I am loath to be too restrictive here, save for restricting 'ad hominems' which I am a slow learner about.

Father Ron Smith said...

Peter, in view of the several remarks made here about the perceived laxity of your discipline of liberal comments on your blog; I would like to point to yet another - similar- comment, made by Sarah Hey, of VoL fame, who clearly believes you are much too liberal with your ruling about who may contribute as 'orthodox' Evangelical Anglicans.

I think that the real value of your ADU web-site, is that it does allow controversy to be aired - something that sites like 'Anglican Mainstream' and 'Virtueonline' are seemingly scared to feature. It is your 'openness to others' without fear of annihilation that commends your site to those of us who want to engage in actual dialogue.

Despite accusations levelled against myself and others about perceived leanings towards the cult of 'ad hominem', I find that those who make these accusations are not averse to using this tactic themselves.

True Anglicanism, certainly for me - over the space of four-score years of it - has always meant the ability to think for one's self, without having to tread a party-line. Believing that the Holy Spirit brings enlightenment - rather than obscurity to dialogue.

Here's to the willingness to be open to others - rather than out of hand condemnation. 'Jesus is Lord!'

Daniel Weir said...

I agree with Peter's decision to nudge this discussion in a more productive direction. I would point out that Martin's contention that he knows what I think of evangelicals is, as far as I can tell, based upon nothing more than my comments about a few American evangelicals, none of whom are Anglicans.

Daniel Weir said...

I checked the Constitution and Canons and if my interpretation of them is correct, the PB cannot be elected to a second term. Why anyone would want that job is a mystery to me. Having worked closely with a diocesan bishop, I'm not sure that I would want to do the work they do.

Anonymous said...

Daniel Weir: my understanding of what you "think of evangelicals" is based on your blog, where you express strong support for something called "same sex marriage", as well as political support for unrestricted abortion, two things which evangelical Christians (including Anglicans like myself) and Roman Catholics reject as gravely sinful.

Ron Smith: I was rightly taught throughout my life to be respectful to olfer people, so I do not like saying these things to one who is old enough to be my father, but I will try one more time to explain to you.
1. you ALREADY have your own blog where you are free to promote your own religious beliefs. Why don't you confine your energies there? Why do you feel driven to comment all the time? I hope it is not a need to be noticed. I imagine your beloved St Francis would say: 'Be loquacious in your prayers and economical in your speech.'
2. unlike MichaelA and Mark, you don't engage in a scholarly way in evangelical hermeneutics or patristics. I appreciate you are not trained in these disciplines, so what are you trying to add? Is it to illuminate or irritate? You don't advance understanding among people who have actually written books on the subject or given university courses.
3. None of us is a terribly good guide on how we come across to others, because most of us have an in-built bias in favor of ourselves (one of the consequences of the fall). So you are not conscious of how often you condemn or cast judgment on others whose views you don't share. At the same time you imagine you are kinder, closer to Christ and more generous than others. Well that is your privilege (or presumption) so to believe. All I can say is the closer I get to Christ the more conscious I am of my sinfulness.

Think hard about this, Ron: what good do you achieve by provoking anger in others? None at all.
If you believe in the power of prayer, instead of commenting fruitlessley and querulously here, resolve for 2013 instead to take a vow of silence from this forum - as I have done from 'Thinking Anglicans' - and pray that your opponents will be converted by the Holy Spirit, whose arguments are more convincing than the wit of man.

Martin

Daniel Weir said...

Martin,
You are right in discerning that I do not agree with some positions that evangelicals take. I would hope we could make a distinction between that and what I think of evangelicals as sisters and brothers in Christ. It was the latter that you seemed to be claiming to know. You might note in this thread I retreated from using the epithet bigot to describe American evangelicals who, in my opinion, make shameful statements about rape, Muslims, and the causes of the Newtown murrders. It is too easy to label such brothers in Christ, and I fell into that trap.

Anonymous said...

Daniel, opposition to abortion and "same-sex marriage" isn't confined to evangelicals, this is part of basic Catholic Christian ethics, and always has been. I have been an ordained Anglican for many years and I find that churchrs like TEC / Ecusa increasingly have less and less in common with historic Anglicanism, or even the Ecusa of the 1970s that I admired. The SEC and the ACC reflect Tec in many ways, and are similarly moribund or dying. I have to say I find many of the 'positions' now sanctified by TEC / Ecusa to be apostate. If that makes me a 'bigot' in your eyes, so be it. I have learnt to have broad shoulders and a thick skin. Perhaps your ethical opinions (however much at variance with thre Bible and Chrisitan tradition) cost you nothing in Massachusetts, but in the end, it is Christ's approbation I seek, not the court of liberal opinion.

Martin

Peter Carrell said...

Moderated comment from Ron Smith.

"Thank you, Martin,for your usual excoriation of my contributions to this site. It was not entirely unexpected from you. I'm afraid i cannot summon up the bile to pay you the compliment of reciprocal criticism - especially in the season of Good Will.



"Blessed are you when......"
"

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron, I omitted a paragraph from your comment above because it made too many presumptions about the state of another commenter. Effectively it was an ad hominem critique which did not move the discussion forward on the matter of how we can best discuss issues here. Martin's point is that discussion is most fruitful when we engage with the issue of the day rather than with the commenter in their person, the presumed theological tribe they belong to or the state of their inner being. I welcome your contributions here but I cannot accept them all in the state they are submitted. Most frequently this is because the last sentence or two lets the comment down as it moves from the issue to the person.

Daniel Weir said...

Peter,
Perhaps you could be as careful in moderating comments that presume to know what I think of evangelicals. I responded to such an assertion and all I got was a brief lecture on ethics. Of course, I understand that my convictions are not ones that have been held through most of the Church's history; I don't need to be told that. I am willing to live with the labels that one might apply to people who have my convictions - I even embrace the label revisionist as quite accurate and, perhaps, even honorable, given the number of positions Episcopalians once took on ethical questions that have been revised. Having once defended slavery and condemned the use of contraceptives, we have revised our positions on those ethical questions. At 66, I understand that it is unlikely that I will see my convictions about same-sexuality widely shared within the Communion. I am also aware that I could be wrong, but I am content to follow the path that I discern, rightly or wrongly, to be God's will for me, and trust the future to God.
Merry Christmas.
Daniel

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Daniel,
I am trying to be even-handed!
I am happy to admit that I do not always get it right.

To all commenters, this is primarily a blog about ANGLICAN matters, from an openly, transparent evangelical perspective. Thus all shades of Anglicanism are welcome here. Clearly I, and commenters are on a learning curve about focusing on issues and avoiding ad hominem remarks. As one who is and has been guilty of the latter, I have a lot to learn. But if we can learn to avoid ad hominem a, might we do global Anglicanism a great service?

Father Ron Smith said...

Dear Peter, I, for one, respect your need to censor derogatory remarks on your own site (ADU). However, my response to 'Martin' was, I thought, entirely in keeping with his desire to denigrate my educational and theological background - in a way that was quite insulting, and not worthy of anyone - let alone a professed 'Christian' - to utter on a public web-site.

I would prefer - if 'Martin' has insulting remarks to make about me, that he man-up, and address them to my web-site - which he criticises as 'not up to the mark' for his superior intellect and theological discernment and his particular mind-set, taste and beliefs.

If it will help you to engage in conversation on your site only with those con/evos who are of Martin's persuasion, then please let me know, and I will desist from posting - much as I enjoy the stimulus.

I am quite busy with the day to day process of encouraging other people on their faith journey, and could well do without the stress of having to contend with libellous remarks about my own situation.

Peace and All Joy1 (St.Francis)

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron,
I apologise to you and all commenters whom I have let down by publishing remarks which have been received as ad hominem/libellous/presumptive.

I would like you to keep commenting.

The standard of intellectual engagement with advanced learning is not the question for me. The question we need to be able to provide an affirmative answer to is how we engage in respectful conversation.

Paul Powers said...

Perhaps the Presiding Bishop reads this blog and has taken the criticisms of her Christmas message (and some of her previous Christmas and Easter messages) to heart. Her Christmas Eve sermon at St. George's Cathedral in Jerusalem is beautiful.

http://www.episcopalcafe.com/lead/presiding_bishop/presiding_bishops_christmas_ev.htm

Merry Christmas from Fort Worth, Texas (where it's still December 25).

Peter Carrell said...

Thanks Paul - will add a comment to the main part of thread later.

The link, by the way, should be http://www.episcopalcafe.com/lead/presiding_bishop/presiding_bishops_christmas_ev.html

Bryden Black said...

Thanks Paul; and it may just be that the rabbis and imams together might be able similarly to link together: Immanuel; Jesus; and, the Holy One. THAT would be a glorious miracle indeed! And is most worthy of prayerful petition in 2013.

Anonymous said...

Daniel writes: "Of course, I understand that my convictions are not ones that have been held through most of the Church's history; I don't need to be told that. I am willing to live with the labels that one might apply to people who have my convictions - I even embrace the label revisionist as quite accurate and, perhaps, even honorable..."

Daniel, if I am wrong in what you think about 'evangelicals' (a term noew becoming very slippery and elusive - is Brian McLaren an 'evangelical' any longer?) you should correct my misapprehensions, which are based on reading your blog and your own words. As I hinted in my parenthetical comment, theological labels are very dodgy today, and most of all in the so-called evangelical world, where cultural eddies swirl around figures like McLaren, Rob Bell and Steve Chalke, who made their name as church founders and youth missionaries, not as theologians; consequently, in the media- and event-driven world of evangelicalism, they are prone to strike out in (for evangelicals) heterodox directiosn, in a way that better educated leaders like John Stott or Tim Keller never would have.
Your support for abortion and homosexual relations do indeed set you apart from the historical Christian mainstream, but it sits in more easily with secular, largely post-Catholic Massachusetts.

Martin

Peter Carrell said...

Dear Martin and Ron,
I am not going to publish your recently made comments in which each has a wee grizzle about the other's perceived/experienced deficiencies (or, if you prefer, surplus of (again, perceived/experienced) hubris.

You have made your points well enough for me to improve my moderation.

I reiterate, all commenters are welcome at ADU and all commenters are asked to comment on the issues raised on the thread, not on commenters who comment on the thread!

Father Ron Smith said...

Too Late, Peter, you've already let Martin's egregious comments through!
A rather uneven outcome, But it's your blog. Holy Innocents, tomorrow!

Daniel Weir said...

Martin,
I thought I was clear in an earlier post. I disagree with people in almost every "camp" within the Communion - and beyond - on some point or other. I often am reading something by someone with whom I tend to agree and find something with which I disagree. I often agree with evangelicals, which should not be surprising. What often worries me is what worried Canon Bryan Green 40 years ago when English evangelicals and Angio-Catholics wouldn't sit together on the platform at his preaching missions. When I lived in England in 1972, I was struck by how much more the CofE was divided than than the Episcopal Church. I now know there was party division here that I wasn't seeing. Now the divisions are much more obvious. I value the evangelicals in the Church, even when I disagree with them. I resist assuming that all members of any party agree on every point and assume that I will agree on most matters with members of nearly every party. When I do disagree, I try not to be disagreeable.
Daniel

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron,
What I have let through, I have let through.
But what I haven't let through (to which I was referring) you haven 't seen (save for you own comment).

Anonymous said...

Daniel,
The liberal evangelical churchmanship (to use a dated word) that Bryan Green represented has, I think, largely disappeared from the C of E. So have the Anglo-Catholics. Why do you think this is so? What do you think largely killed off or drove out the Anglo-Catholiocs?
Yet Holy Trinity Brompton (Green's old church) is much larger, maybe the largest Anglican church by attendance in England. & this charismatic evangelical church has warm relations with its high church bishop.
(P)Ecusa in the early '70s was for me the church of Dennis Bennett, Graham Pulkingham of the Church of the Redeemer, Terry Everett of Darien.
& then it all began to change. Where is that legacy now?
What do you think drove PECUSA > Ecusa > Tec to its grievous divisions and precipitous decline? Why have many thousands left, including whole dioceses?

Support for killing unborn children (as Tec under Louie Crewe has avowed) and "same sex marriage" (a gross absurdity condemend by the Vatican) can never be adiaphora, like wearing chasubles. That's why evangelicals and Catholics have a lot in common today.

Good manners are important, but they're not the sum of (or same as) morality. A lot of people found our Lord disagreeable at times.

Martin

Peter Carrell said...

(Moderated, from Shawn)

"...

I have made my position clear. ANY further public attacks on myself personally that I consider defamatory will result in legal action, either through the courts or a Title D.

...

None of us has behaved perfectly here, ...

Let's all turn over a new leaf for the new year and make ADU a safe place for everyone."

[Hi Shawn, I am omitting your direct call to one commenter. Your thoughts are appreciated by me as a moderator in need of guidance, but it is precisely such direct address to other commenters in a directional/instructional manner which raises the heat here. P.]

Shawn Herles said...

No problem Peter.

I am happy to leave everything up to your moderation.

No pressure! ;)

Seriously, I won't be jumping on every little thing. I am prepared to give a fair bit of room to allow you, and "others", to get used things.

Hope your enjoying your break.

Daniel Weir said...

In reviewing this thread, I noted that in addition to my unfortunate first post, there have been others in which assumptions were made about whole groups of people. I read again Carl's comments about people from New York City. His assertion that they don't want to live in places like Kansas is, on the surface, unremarkable. If they wanted to live in Kansas, they could do that, so their decision not to live there is, as best, an advertisement for the joys of urban life, or, at worst, an expression of their contempt for people who live in Kansas. Unless I am wrong in my reading of Carl's comment, he believes that New York City's residents see the people of places like Kansas as inferior to them.

I suspect that that is true about some people in NYC, but I suspect that there are people on Topeka who think they are better than New Yorkers. What seems to me to be the case for a lot of people is that they live where they grew up or where the jobs are. I suspect that there are at least a few people in New York City who would dearly love to live in Kansas if they could find the kind of job they have in New York.

I may be accused of belaboring the point, but unexamined assumptions, which might not be a problem in real conversations, can create problems in this medium of communication. As the parent of a resident of New York City, I found Carl's comment mildly offensive.

carl jacobs said...

Daniel Weir

Unless I am wrong in my reading of Carl's comment, he believes that New York City's residents see the people of places like Kansas as inferior to them.

Yep. That would be the case. And that attitude was perfectly illustrated by Kurt's comment to which I was responding. I am sorry if you think it offensive to say so. It does however accurately represent my perception. I didn't invent the phrase 'fly-over country' after all. I just happen to live in it.

carl

Daniel Weir said...

It is refreshing for someone to own up to his own prejudice against a rather large and varied group of people.

carl jacobs said...

Daniel Weir

Yes, well, you know us yahoos from Redneckistan. We just overflow with prejudice.

carl

Daniel Weir said...

Carl,

My sense from this exchange is that you don't take seriously the problem of sweeping generalizations in discussions like this. We can get away with them in face to face conversation with people we know, but among strangers they tend to shut down serious conversation. Why should I take seriously someone who appears to think that the residents of New York City see themselves as superior to Midwesterners?

I recall a comment that Tom Clancy made after the Sept. 11 attacks. He said that before then he didn't think New Yorkers belonged to the same country as he did.

Daniel

Peter Carrell said...

CORRESPONDENCE ON THE CHARACTER OF THE PEOPLE OF NEW YORK AND/OR OTHER CITIES AND/OR STATES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is now closed.

Dear Recent Commenters,
Yes, I am not letting you have the last word, but I have to draw the line somewhere and it has all been getting too 'ad hominem' albeit in an indirect way about 'citizens', 'rednecks' etc. And when a comment mentioned the disproportionate number of ... which has nothing to do with anything on this thread then I am afraid I am not prepared to put the time and effort into extracting the needless words from the reasonable words ....

Enough!