‘Comments Closed’ on pro-GAFCON blogsite!

Having tried, several times, to comment on a particularly virulent blogsite which concentrates on denigrating the Anglican Communion Provincial Churches that are not part of the reactionary GAFCON group; I find that my comments are blocked. I am refused access to the column’s section inviting other people’s contributions.

However, on viewing this latest offering on David Virtue’s site – which spends a lot of words criticising the Archbishop of Canterbury’s regret at the boycotting of the Lambeth Conference by certain Gafcon Primates – one should perhaps consider one’s-self privileged to be on V.o.L.’s blacklist for any comments that should dare to question posts that reveal the standard of vitriol-on-line towards the upholders of truly mainstream Anglicanism; which has been sundered by the arrival of self-titled ‘Confessional Anglicanism’ introduced by Gafcon and its newly-created daughter churches in the U.S., the U.K., and New Zealand).

One cannot but wonder at the chutzpah that still motivates such articles as that shown below, which champions the schismatic ambition of a group of radically conservative ‘Anglicans’, whose excuse for refusing to share common Eucharistic Fellowship with the Archbishop of Canterbury (and Anglican Provinces loyal to the Founding See of Canterbury) is based on the cult of ‘Sola Scriptura’ – an attitude which, seemingly, will not allow for any moral judgements that do not belong to what they perceive as the teaching of the Scriptures. This narrow viewpoint, sadly, would still enshrine the outdated cultural attitudes of homophobia, patriarchy, sexism and misogyny of bygone centuries they interpret as behaviour consonant with their understanding of the Bible and, therefore; valid!

While the rest of the Anglican Communion Provinces have moved – or are moving – away from this judgemental viewpoint, which civilised society has already moved away from; there are people in the Church and the world who are being judged by certain quarters of the Church as being ‘sinful’ and ‘possessed by demons’ for simply being different from the heterosexual majority in their gender/sexuality identity. While Jesus himself said absolutely nothing about gay people (he did say something about heterosexual relationships which he saw as defective), those who condemn gays seem to be obsessed by their belief that he would have condemned such people – simply because of their misunderstanding of Biblical passages that have little or nothing to do with faithful, monogamous, same-sex relationships.

Father Ron Smith, Christchurch, New Zealand

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WELBY DENOUNCES AFRICAN PRIMATES BOYCOTTING OF LAMBETH CONFERENCE

WELBY DENOUNCES AFRICAN PRIMATES BOYCOTTING OF LAMBETH CONFERENCE
ABC says he will keep the doors open in the hope they will attend
Four African Primates say they will not attend over biblical revisionism

By David W. Virtue, DD
www.virtueonline.org
June 10, 2022

Archbishop Justin Welby and Dr. Josiah Fearon have denounced as “un-biblical” the decision of the Nigerian, Rwandan and Ugandan churches to skip the Lambeth Conference. The two men issued a press release arguing that “God calls us to unity and not to conflict.” That is the very purpose of the church globally, they say. Welby says he will keep the doors open and the lights on in the hope they will still attend.

“Boycotts do not proclaim Christ, those who stay away cannot be heard, they will lose influence and the chance of shaping the future. All of us will be the poorer spiritually as a result of your absence.”

Their letter was in response to a joint statement issued by the three Primates — Archbishop Henry Ndukuba of Nigeria, Archbishop Laurent Mbanda of Rwanda, and Archbishop Stephen Kaziimba of Uganda. The letter came in response to the Communique from the Primates’ Meeting at Lambeth Palace, London, in March, which the three Primates did not attend.

Their argument is that Justin Welby and Lambeth have become wed to the spirit of the age over sexual issues. They described “the recognition of homosexual relations” as the main cause of contention, alongside the “underlying question” of “biblical revisionism, arising from the adoption of secular culture within the Church”.

So, it is fascinating that Welby can digest the elephant in the room, namely Lambeth Resolution 1:10 which became the theological gold standard on human sexual behavior back in 1998 expressly forbidding homosexual behavior because it is a salvation issue. Welby hopes that these African prelates will give it a pass in the name of a higher unity that includes climate change, war, freedom of religion, belief, and food supplies.

In his letter, Archbishop Justin lit into the three primates telling them to cease making inaccurate statements about the position of the Church of England, telling them that “the Church of England, has not in any way changed its teaching on marriage or the place of sexual relations.”

That is too disingenuous by half.

Technically, the CofE has not changed its teaching or its canons, but it already has homosexual priests performing under the radar without being deposed.

Anglican Mainstream blog reports that over a number of years, in practice the teaching has changed on the ground and is in the process of being changed officially. “Archbishop Welby’s ‘radical inclusion’ speech following GS2055 (2017), the Living in Love and Faith process (2020-2022), and various bishops’ charges and Synod resolutions, declare again and again that since there is no consensus on the theological basis of the current teaching, and because of increasing critiques of that teaching from the culture being an obstacle to mission, the teaching can and should be changed when there is sufficient consensus.”

Furthermore, Welby’s Appointments Secretary, one Stephen Knott is a married homosexual! Can one imagine an orthodox ordinand even getting past him for a preferment in the Church of England! Just ask Calvin Robinson, a black man who sought ordination in the CofE and got cancelled for being politically and theologically conservative and for daring to say that England was not suffering from systemic racism.

Furthermore, it is terrifying that bishops support a ban on ‘conversion therapy’ that would lead to the criminalization of those who base their pastoral care on the church’s official teaching, is terrifying, especially as this writer has seen reparative therapy actually work, in London, of all places.

Welby also criticized the three Primates’ rejection of some of the topics to be discussed at the Lambeth Conference, saying: “we are distressed to read that you consider matters of the environment, poverty and economic disadvantage to be ‘peripheral’. These are matters of life and death for large parts of the Communion. They are the result of human sin of despoiling and ruining God’s creation and it is anticipated that the world will see devastating wars and the displacement of up to one billion people as a direct result of climate change. Not to care for God’s creation and for the poor and destitute is in direct contravention of the teaching of scripture and the words of Jesus Christ.”

The truth is sodomy is a salvation issue, according to scripture, and Jesus said, ‘the poor you will have with you always.’ Not of course, that Jesus advocated it, but he recognized that there would always be haves and have nots, and those who had and did not share like the rich man would wind up in hell. (Prosperity preachers, beware).

On the question of disagreements within the Anglican Communion, Archbishops Justin and Josiah said: “The Bible is at the heart of Christian life. Anglicans hold to Scripture as the ultimate authority in matters of faith, as the Church has down the centuries. There have always been disagreements on matters that affect the faith and life of the church and, from the Council of Jerusalem (see Acts 15) onwards the way that the Church has dealt with disagreement has been by prayerful discussion and listening to the views of those who differ.”

But the Council of Jerusalem never sanctioned any change in the moral law (Ten Commandments), only those found in ceremonial law keeping. For example, circumcision now no longer has any force or spiritual value.

Furthermore, there are countless stories of evangelical African primates berating their governments over corruption, violence, the murder of their people by Boko Haram and Fulani Tribesmen and much more. VOL has run multiple stories which can be found here www.virtueonline.org

The three archbishops retorted that the “focus on the environment should be rooted in biblical theology within an authentic salvation message and must not abandon that for any social cause.”

Welby and Fearon dished up the usual canard about “listening”, saying “[you] will have neither voice nor the opportunity to listen.” Well, we have seen how well that worked in The Episcopal Church. Haven’t we? Orthodox Episcopalians listened and listened to the whine of homosexuals for over 40 years and when the homosexuals got their way with the ordination of Gene Robinson, opposition voices got called ‘homophobic’ and ‘hate filled’ and if they refused to bend over, they got tossed out of the church. Just ask Bishop Bill Love, former Bishop of Albany!

“I, Justin as Archbishop of Canterbury have not invited any same-sex spouses of bishops to the Lambeth Conference. This has caused a number of protests, including one from the University of Kent, which has offered accommodation to these spouses independent of the Lambeth Conference.”

But they will turn up, and even if they are not invited to listen in to the lectures, they will be present. They will be very public when several bishops hold an unauthorized queer Eucharist in Canterbury. It will be a major embarrassment to Welby.

Welby consistently ignores GAFCON and the Jerusalem Declaration which echoes “the unchangeable standard of Christian marriage between one man and one woman as the proper place for sexual intimacy”. Archbishop Idowu-Fearon, who is a former Archbishop of Kaduna, a province in the Church of Nigeria, has previously described GAFCON as “not a movement of the Holy Spirit, because it is divisive”. REALLY!

The three African archbishops represent more than 30 million Anglicans. A fourth African archbishop told VOL through an intermediary, that he will not be attending — The Archbishop of Kenya, Jackson Ole Sapit who speaks for an additional 5 million Anglicans. There might be others. We shall know more at Lambeth next month.

END

About kiwianglo

Retired Anglican priest, living in Christchurch, New Zealand. Ardent supporter of LGBT Community, and blogger on 'Thinking Anglicans UK' site. Theology: liberal, Anglo-Catholic & traditional. regarding each person as a unique expression of Christ, and therefore lovable.
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