16 July 2008

GAFCON's huntin' dog don't fly

I am ever amazed at the multitude of ways schismatics are able to spin any possible statement to prop up their one legged stool. After delivering a blistering denunciation of the Puritan-donatist schism we are supposed to believe Rowan has reversed himself and said that the group is welcome to stay and attempt to infect as much of the communion as they wish.

Will the real Rowan please stand up? Well, there are only two of them:

  • The fiery stand-up for-what-is-right Welshman
  • The “Let-them-go-after-the-colonials” Archbishop

I am still betting, based on recent comments, that the former Rowan stood up, took a suit-of-armour gauntlet off his hand and slapped GAFCON across the other cheek. But they simply cannot admit what’s happened.

The world’s Anglican Bishops are gathering and the GAFCONites cannot stand the fact that the world is watching the sane 4/5 of the communion and ignoring the schismats. Big egos just can’t live with that. Conveniently, there is a new development. I’m sure the Rev’d. Mr. Minns burned the candle late into the night to figure out how to shift, or rather, try to shift, the attention back to the malcontents.

I’m always been sceptical (sceptical) of quotes that offer no documentation. Where is the letter postmarked days, weeks or months before Lambeth? Like everything else from GAFCON, we are expected to believe it simply because they said so.

This is all propaganda and a certain non-bishop and his alleged “boss” and their whole movement was sent down as they say in the United Kingdom.

But for the sake of argument, let’s believe for a moment that the quote is correct. The troubling bit is this:

I understand that Bishop John-David Schofield has been accepted as a full member of the episcopal fellowship of the Province of the Southern Cone within the Anglican Communion and as such cannot be regarded as having withdrawn from the Anglican Communion. However, it is acknowledged that his exact status (especially given the complications surrounding the congregations associated with him) remains unclear on the basis of the general norms of Anglican Canon Law, and this constitutes one of the issues on which we hope for assistance from the Windsor Continuation Group. Bishop Schofield has elected to decline the invitation to the Lambeth Conference issued to him last year although that decision does not signal any withdrawal from the Communion. I hope there may be further careful reflection to clarify the terms on which he will exercise his ministry. [Emphasis added.]

As I recall, the “norms of Anglican Canon Law” do not permit a diocese to withdraw from the province/church that created it.

Let’s see;

  • Braking ordination/consecration vows
  • Not following norms of Anglican Canon Law
  • Properly deposed
  • Admittance to another province after deposition (which is against norms of Anglican Canon Law) and breaking the canons of that province by said action.

Nothing “unclear” about that even in cricket. End of story.

But, all of that was for the sake of argument. We aren’t dealing with the recent Bishop Williams, we are dealing with the old-new Bishop. The former bishop of San Joaquin’s absence is a sure and certain slap in the face of GAFCON.

According to Ruth Gledhill the archbishop has told the world’s Anglican bishops to stop their backstabbing and in-fighting. He also accused the conservative bishops of “breatching their duties and damaging the welfare of Christians.” Ouch! But, but, but that’s not what he meant at all, let us explain it to you…..where’s Minns?”

What troubles me about the above alleged statement is the bit about the Windsor Continuation Group. Who and what are they and what role are they to play and who has given them or will give them what authority?

After watching the waves and wind for far too long, the Archbishop has finally launched out into the deep (read it in the gospel) and he's chosen the boat of the Anglican Communion, not the Puritan Communion.

When Lambeth 2008 is over, the Communion will probably look a little different; it not immediately, in th next two or three years. Exactly what it will look like is still anyone's guess -- but the GAFCONites will not be at the helm.

The only interesting bit is to see who actually walks away from the Altar. But that's not our decision -- we are to be in the father's place, watching and waiting for the prodigal children to come back home where they belong. And, most important, to do our best to act as if they'd never left in the first place.

There is an old Southern saying for when someone tries to do something in a grandiose way, but fall flat on their face so hard it can be heard three counties away: "So your huntin' dog don't fly." I think that applies here.