Albert Mohler on the Australian Plebiscite

In his daily commentary, The Briefing, for 17th August 2017, Albert Mohler speaks about the Australian plebiscite on same-sex marriage.

Worth hearing an outsider’s perspective.

Related: ABC offer helpline to staff distressed by same-sex marriage debate – Nine News.

GAFCON: What it does and why it matters

“At GAFCON 2013, Dr Peter Jensen (the General Secretary of GAFCON) moderated a session entitled We are not alone.

In this session Dr Jensen introduced and encouraged members of the Anglican Communion to share their experiences as Anglicans standing up for and promoting the authority of Scripture and the Lordship of Christ. A constant refrain from those who presented was that the GAFCON movement had shown them that amidst severe persecution from governments or litigation by their own diocese they were not alone. …”

– At The Australian Church Record, Caitlin Hurley continues here three-part series on GAFCON. (Part 1 here.)

Why marriage should be between a man and a woman

” ‘On the issue of marriage I think the reality is there is a cultural, religious, historical view around that which we have to respect. The party’s position is very clear that this is an institution that is between a man and a woman.’

If I told you that was a quote from Cory Bernardi, Lyle Shelton or worse, that oft condemned unreconstructed traditionalist Tony Abbott, would you consider it just more evidence of their homophobia? Many commentators would. It seems right now no one can make any statement in favour of marriage without being condemned for being a ‘hater’ or ‘bigot’.

However, the statement doesn’t come from Mr Bernardi, but from that other strong-minded senator from South Australia, Penny Wong. …”

– Read the full article by Michael Kellahan, executive director of Freedom for Faith, at The Sydney Morning Herald. (Subscription.)

See also: Churches lay out plebiscite fears for PM, The Australian. (Subscription.)

The Anglican Archbishop of ­Sydney, Glenn Davies, and leading Catholic officials have written to Malcolm Turnbull demanding that any proposed bill on same-sex marriage be released before Australians are asked to vote on the issue. …

“This timeframe is inapprop­riately short, particularly given there remain a number of un­resolved questions concerning the postal plebiscite process,” ­Archbishop Davies wrote.

John Anderson on what’s happening in Australia over the same-sex marriage plebiscite

Former Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson spoke about his very real concerns for Australia – on ABC News.

Well worth watching – on YouTube. (9’30”.)

Same-sex marriage: Prime Minister sets date for postal vote

“Australians could start receiving ballot papers to vote on same-sex marriage in their letter boxes from September 12.

The Federal Government has decided on a non-binding postal ballot if the Senate refuses to approve a compulsory plebiscite. …”

– Report from ABC News.

Update: Same-sex marriage will be legal by Christmas predicts Brandis. – ABC News.

What’s the go with GAFCON?

“In November last year, the date and location of the next GAFCON conference were announced – 17-22 June 2018, in Jerusalem. It is expected that over 2000 will attend.

But how did GAFCON start? What is it and what does it do? And why is it such a big deal? …”

– At The Australian Church Record, ACL Council member Caitlin Hurley begins a short series on GAFCON. Worth passing on to church members.

Bill fails religious protection test – Anglican Diocese of Sydney Media Statement

Anglican Diocese of Sydney
Media Statement, 6th August 2017

Bill fails religious protection test

“There are serious religious issues and freedom of conscience concerns arising from the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017 being promoted by some liberal MPs” said the Anglican Archbishop of Sydney today.  Read more

Religious Freedom protections in new same sex marriage proposals: too few, too narrow

“The debate over same sex marriage in Australia has been re-ignited by news that some members of the federal governing Liberal/National Party (LNP) coalition are proposing, contrary to their party’s policy, to introduce legislation in Federal Parliament this coming week to redefine marriage to extend it to same sex couples.

In particular, press reports today indicate that a new Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Bill 2017 will be introduced, one feature of which is that it contains legislative protections for religious freedom, designed to encourage support of the legislation by believers.

In my view the protections to be provided, if press reports about the proposal are accurate, are far too few and far too narrow, and the proposal cannot be seen as providing adequate protection for this fundamental human right. …”

– Here is an important and very current contribution by Associate Professor Neil Foster, at Law and Religion Australia.

See also: Liberal MPs urged to “keep their promise” regarding a Plebiscite.

“I have been ashamed of Episcopal leadership denying the Christian faith…”

On GAFCON: “It is therapy for our hubris to have those to whom we have sent missionaries, now seeing the need of mission to the United States, Canada, Europe and Britain in their headlong race to sever ties with the Christian faith.”

– Bishop C. Fitzsimons Allison, retired Episcopal Bishop of South Carolina, was interviewed on his 90th birthday for VirtueOnline.

For decades, Bishop Allison was a leading light in the battle for the Lordship of Christ in The Episcopal Church of the USA.

Liberal MPs urged to “keep their promise” regarding a Plebiscite

“We now know that a group of Liberal MPs are planning to defy their Prime Minister and trash the election promise they made to you. They plan to cross the floor, vote with Labor, the Greens and independents to force the parliament to debate same-sex marriage.

They promised you there would be no change without a people’s vote. …”

– Australian Christian Lobby’s Lyle Shelton urges supporters to pray, and to contact Liberal members of Parliament (though a contact form at the link above) ahead of Monday afternoon’s party meeting.

The Mythical Middle


“It has not worked. It cannot work. It will not work.

I mean the idea that we will be able to find a middle ground, where we will be able to be quietly or relatively conservative, while allowing for a denominational variety which blesses sexual relations outside the bonds of traditional marriage.

The present tactic of those looking for a change is to say that there is a middle way…”

– Archbishop Peter Jensen examines the idea that you can hold a ‘middle ground’ position when the Bible’s teaching is clear. At the GAFCON General Secretary’s blog.

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