CANARY IN THE MINE SHAFT?

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010 | Uncategorized

The Anglican left is still completely and utterly bat crap over the idea of an Anglican Covenant.  Savitri Hensman writes in the Guardian:

The Church of England’s House of Bishops is urging it to accept an Anglican Communion Covenant. This would give top leaders of overseas churches more power over the C of E and (strictly in theory) vice versa. The Archbishop of Canterbury has been a champion of greater centralism among Anglicans worldwide, supposedly to strengthen unity. But recent events have exposed the tawdry reality behind talk of “interdependence” and “bonds of affection.”

The Communion has long been a family of churches in different parts of the world, with a common heritage of faith but able to make their own decisions. The 1878 Lambeth Conference resolved that “the duly certified action of every national or particular Church, and of each ecclesiastical province (or diocese not included in a province), in the exercise of its own discipline, should be respected by all the other Churches” and “no bishop or other clergyman of any other Church should exercise his functions within that diocese without the consent of the bishop thereof.”

Unlike any other Lambeth resolution, 1.10 in 1998 – which rejected “homosexual practice as incompatible with Scripture” and advised against blessing same sex unions or ordaining partnered gay clergy while urging Anglicans “to listen to the experience of homosexual persons” and “minister pastorally and sensitively to all” – was treated as binding, though even then selectively. Leaders like Akinola scorned any pretence of pastoral sensitivity or willingness to listen to “deviants.”

In power-play of the type the Covenant encourages, global church politics will trump love, justice and even logic. This is a poor substitute for freedom in Christ.

All of which makes the following news rather…interesting.

The Anglican Church of Mexico, which was part of the Episcopal Church until 1995, has become the first province to adopt the Anglican Covenant.

“We are delighted to hear that Mexico has agreed to adopt the Covenant,” said the Rev. Canon Kenneth Kearon, Secretary General of the Anglican Communion. “Provinces were asked to take their time to seriously consider this document, and we are glad to hear from recent synods that they are doing just that.”

Especially considering the nature and leadership of Mexican Anglicanism.

The vote also is significant because Mexico’s primate, the Most Rev. Carlos Touche–Porter, has frequently stood with pro-gay advocacy groups within the Anglican Communion.

The archbishop became one of four patrons of Inclusive Church in 2007. He said then that his province would accept clergy involved in same-sex partnerships, adding: “Mexican society is open and tolerant and our church reflects this.”

Is Mexico a provincial test case?  Will Mexico sign on the dotted line, bring in homosexual clergy, perform homosexual marriages, dare Lambeth Palace to come down hard on some Third-Worlders and show the world what a sham the Anglican Covenant really is?

Stay tuned.

21 Comments to CANARY IN THE MINE SHAFT?

Fuinseoig
June 30, 2010

“Mexican society is open and tolerant and our church reflects this.”

I wonder, Christopher. Is Mexican society really ready for a church that has gay clergy marrying their boyfriends? I have no idea if that’s the case, but I am inclined to wonder if maybe having separated from TEC, the Anglicans in Mexico might be re-thinking what standing on their own two feet involves and that if they want to have a snowball in hell’s chance of being viable, they’ll have to avoid becoming known as the ‘gay church’ and so they might be willing to sign on to the Covenant and then shrugging helplessly when TEC starts looking for support, along the lines of “We’d love to join you, guys, but what can we do? Our hands are tied.”

Again, if anyone knows better that Mexico is just full of people queuing up to join a church with openly gay and lesbian clergy, enlighten my ignorance. Speaking of which, how many female clergy does the Anglican Church of Mexico have?

Fuinseoig
June 30, 2010

Aw, crap. I don’t speak Spanish and I didn’t even Babelfish this, but good God almighty, I want to go “Hulk smash!”

From the website of the Anglican Church of Mexico, explaining how it’s part of the “One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church” through Anglicanism:

“Pero, también del cristianismo Celta que se desarrollo en las Islas Británicas en los primeros siglos de nuestra era.”

Please tell me that a Spanish-speaking Central American country in a completely different continent is not banging on about Celtic Christianity.

Should I be looking to smack Bishop Schori around for this or is it handed out in official leaflets all over the place? “Oh, we’re the heirs of Celtic Christianity which was the native religion of the British Isles and not those usurping Romans with their Popes sending bishops to Canterbury and big Norman cathedrals built out of stone with marble lines in the floor and what have you.”

Daniel Muller
June 30, 2010

Aw, Fuinseoig beat me to the Celtic Christianity (it is in the pop-ups whether you are Anglican or gentile) line.

Well, I will leave the rest of my comment:

“no bishop or other clergyman of any other Church should exercise his functions within that diocese without the consent of the bishop thereof.”

Mutatis mutandis, that is also true in the Catholic Church, and I should imagine in Orthodox churches. It is a point in favor of hierarchy.

“Mexican society is open and tolerant and our church reflects this.”

The Mexican government, especially in Mexico City, is historically “intolerant” of (i.e., hostile to) the Catholic Church and is always on the lookout for a tool …

Plus marriage is completely regulated by the state — sacramental marriage is not recognized by the government — and “gay” “marriage” is only legal in one state and the Federal District to my knowledge. So good luck with that.

Katherine
June 30, 2010

So I see we no longer have “one faith” but “one heritage of faith.” Tricky.

Alas, Fuinseoig, yes, they’re talking about Celtic Christianity.

So far as I know the Mexican Anglican church is very small, has been propped up with ECUSA funds for its entire existence, and has a history of corruption. That doesn’t mean that there are no Christian Anglican believers within it; I hope there are, but this hasn’t been a freestanding province.

dwstroudmd
June 30, 2010

This is reminiscent of the government of Mexico suing Arizona in Federal Court over the alleged strictness of the law recently passed. One can only laugh at the stupidity.

FW Ken
June 30, 2010

able to make their own decisions.

Until, of course, they make a decision I don’t like, at which point, I’ll organize a demonstration in front of their embassy, seek to keep their archbishop out of the country, and write more outraged articles in The Guardian.

Ain’t rightousness a grand thing!

st. anonymous
June 30, 2010

Why on earth are they making such a fuss about the Covenant? They ignored the Lambeth statement and the moratorium, so they can ignore the Covenant too. They never do anything they don’t want to, so wherefore all the whingeing?

Whitestone
June 30, 2010

I assume this is the gelded eunuch toothless effete wuss of a covenant-in-name-only that the revisionists have revised to their specifications?

Katherine
June 30, 2010

Actually, that’s a good question, Whitestone. What version of the covenant? Is there a final version? I don’t keep up because it seems pointless anyhow.

Bill2
June 30, 2010

“dare Lambeth Palace to come down hard on some Third-Worlders and show the world what a sham the Anglican Covenant really is”

That’s pretty much the ballgame summary right there!

Don Janousek
June 30, 2010

Bill2: Keep in mind that the colonials – the black and brown folks – are supposed to be eternally grateful that they are now allowed to use the front door at Lambeth Palace and that the fried chicken dinners served to them at the primates meetings are of the “all you can eat” variety.

But, when it comes to actual decision-making and knowing what is “good for them,” they need to move to the back of the bus, advanced degrees from Oxford and Cambridge notwithstanding.

Why, do you realize that there are African and Mexican bishops who don’t even know what the really good years are for Oporto wine? How common of them! They may be acquainted with Scripture, but not with the finer things in life. Oh, the white man’s burden! But one must do one’s best. Cheerio, tut-tut, humpf and all that.

Don Janousek
June 30, 2010

Whitestone: “gelded eunuch?” Highly redundant, but very accurate.

Michael D
July 1, 2010

Is Mexico a provincial test case?

Looks like it, eh?

Seems to me, Chris, that you always said the covenant would be as effective as the willingness of the global church to enforce it. And Mexico’s job right now is to start establishing precedents to undermine future enforcement.

Sinner
July 1, 2010

Is Mexico a provincial test case? Will Mexico sign on the dotted line, bring in homosexual clergy, perform homosexual marriages, dare Lambeth Palace to come down hard on some Third-Worlders and show the world what a sham the Anglican Covenant really is?

Once can only assume that – although Mexico ordains gay priests and persumably will offer unofficial services of blessings for gay “marriages” – that
* they’re not going to consecrate any openly gay bishops
* they’re not going to institute official rites for gay marriage
* they’re not going to offer alternative oversight in the ACNA diocese north of the border.

That’s what everything from Lambeth on has asked them to do. Not fire their gay clergy. Not excommunicate gay parishoners. Not stop talking to groups in other dioceses.

I don’t find it surprising that Mexico, or Ireland, or Wales or Australia – or lots of other liberal diocese are willing to live within these boundaries for the sake of the whole communion. I expect NZ will do (there are *other* issues around in NZ)

which just makes ECUSA look even more arrogant and out-of-touch that they won’t

Allen Lewis
July 1, 2010

The fact that the revisionistas (in the Spirit of Mexico!) are whining about the covenant, I expect they see it as a possible means of restriction. They don’t need any of that! So they whine and moan and piss their pants.

Yes, Fuinseoig, they were banging on about “Celtic Christianity” in Español. what is it about “You’re not the boss of me!” that is so attractive? Christians have supposedly pleadged their devotion to Jesus Christ. who is their Lord and Saviour. Just what is it about the word “Lord” that these people do not get?

The New Testament is shot through with passages about humbling ourselves and being obedient to Christ, even unto death. How does that square with independance and going one’s own way???

‘Tis a puzzlement!

Daniel Muller
July 1, 2010

Please tell me that a Spanish-speaking Central American country in a completely different continent is not banging on about Celtic Christianity.

Do you know, that whole mishmash was obviously translated from English. But I could not find it on “T”"E”"C’”s Web site (although I did find a video of St. Michael’s and all Cadillacs); in fact, I could not find the original anywhere on the Internet. But it turns out that even at least a few Copts want a piece of St. Patrick.

Katherine
July 1, 2010

Very interesting link, Daniel Muller. I await Fuinseoig’s comments. Others more knowledgeable than I can comment on the idea of the nasty Romans squelching Celtic Christianity because they were Orthodox, not Roman. The Copts do hold that they are an original ancient foundation and can stand on their own. However, the idea of a Coptic link through early monasteries in or near Gaul is quite possible.

Fuinseoig
July 1, 2010

Well, there is something to the idea. Certainly, early monasticism (pre-Benedict’s reforms and foundations) owed a great deal, if not everything, to the Eastern desert fathers, including the idea of the retreat to the desert (which, since we don’t have deserts in Ireland, meant remote places like islands) and the severity of penances; the evolution of the idea of the three martyrdoms: white, green and red:

“The monks were seeking martyrdom and there were three ways of achieving this. Going into exile was the third way, called white martyrdom. It meant the sacrificing of everything to do with home to be like Abram, called to go to a place that God would show. The other types of martyrdom were red martyrdom, shedding your blood – something difficult to achieve in Ireland as there was no persecution – and green martydom – taking on extreme ascetic practices, as was done for example by monks who went to live on Skellig Michael.”

Indeed, the hagiographic tradition of Patrick does like to link him to St. Martin of Tours, who was a founder of a monastery. I don’t know about Lérins:

“http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11554a.htm

He had for his parents Calphurnius and Conchessa. The former belonged to a Roman family of high rank and held the office of decurio in Gaul or Britain. Conchessa was a near relative of the great patron of Gaul, St. Martin of Tours.”

And Bob Flynn, back in the late 70s, had a series called “Atlantean” which proposed that the Irish and the Berbers were of common stock, i.e. that rather than being Celts per se, we were North Africans:

http://conamara.org/index.php?page=atlantean

But in the heel of the hunt, we did submit to Rome, not Alexandria. St. Malachy was a close friend of St. Bernard of Clairvaux; the Irish missionaries who went to the Continent inevitably were drawn into close contact with the Church there. So, Eastern influence on Irish monasticism and the early church? Sure. Orthodox rather than Catholic? Not so much.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Malachy

:-)

Katherine
July 2, 2010

I haven’t seen much sign of fair-skinned redheads in North Africa. Even granting some Arab overlay there, still, that one sounds far-fetched.

Fuinseoig
July 2, 2010

Katherine, I think the idea was more that we were North Africans that got washed-out by the rain or something.

Hey, I never said it made sense. But God bless Bob Quinn, that was never a priority of his.

:-)

Katherine
July 2, 2010

Sounds like a relative of the “ancient Egyptians were really black Africans” theme which we hear from the black power lobby here in the U.S. I believe God values Africans, North Africans, and all others equally, so claiming that Cleopatra (who was Greek, for heaven’s sake!) was “black” is nonsense.

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