Bishop of Maidstone calls Scottish Episcopal Church to turn back to God

The Bishop of Maidstone, the Rt Rev’d Rod Thomas, today responded to the decision by the Scottish Episcopal Church to change its canons of marriage. He said:

“The decision by the Scottish Episcopal Church (SEC) to change its canons of marriage in order to allow same-sex marriages in church is very serious. By its actions it is denying the goodness and authority of God’s Word to us in the Scriptures.

As a result it is breaking communion with the majority of Anglicans worldwide. This leaves me with no choice but to recognise that the SEC has walked away from our communion, so I will no longer be able to accept invitations to Christian meetings where bishops of the SEC are actively participating, unless their broken communion is recognised in the arrangements.

I pray that this declining church will understand that their position is not blessed by God, will repent of their action and turn back to Him.”

He also wrote,

“I … welcome the steps that GAFCON … is taking to support those who are seeking to stand firm by the Bible’s teaching on marriage and sexual relationships, and wish to assure Canon Andy Lines of my prayers as he becomes a missionary bishop.”

– Read this, and another interesting development, at The Bishop of Maidstone’s website.

The GAFCON Missionary Bishop for Scotland and Europe

“Canon Andy Lines’ consecration will not be irregular or invalid.

His Holy Orders in the Province of South America have been duly and lawfully transferred to, and likewise received by, the ACNA. He will be consecrated by acting primates, archbishops and bishops of the Anglican Communion. His consecration will fall within the historical tradition of faithful Bishops who have created order in the Church during times of crisis.

These are times when faith and doctrine have been threatened by others’ failure to guard against false teaching – or worse, have actively promoted such false teaching. One can trace this all the way back to Athanasius and the crisis of Arianism in the early Church. …”

– Canon Phil Ashey, President of the American Anglican Council, provides historical background for the decision to consecrate Andy Lines as a Missionary Bishop.

Faith in a Time of Crisis – Standing for Truth in a Changing World – Review

“The book could not have come at a more vital time. The Scottish Episcopal Church has just agreed to perform same sex weddings. It is only a matter of time before the Church of England follows, as it has historically done on other issues.” 

Read more

The Business of GAFCON

“I remember being part of a meeting about fifteen years ago. One of the people in the room said something simple but effective.

He pointed out that the two sides of the debate about sexuality had different strategies. If you wanted change, the strategy was long term and incremental. What you needed was courage to keep talking about the issue and constantly, though slightly, breaking the boundary. You then needed patience to wait for the institution to concede, inch by inch. It would take twenty years, he said (!), but victory would be yours.

But what if you wanted to maintain the position which all Christians had believed was the truth based on the word of God? For you, this was much more difficult.”

– GAFCON General Secretary Peter Jensen explains the need for, and the business of, GAFCON in his latest post. Essential reading.

Scottish Episcopal Church to vote on gay marriage in church

“The Scottish Episcopal Church will hold a historic vote later on whether to allow gay couples to marry in church.

If the vote is passed, it will become the first Anglican Church in the UK to allow same-sex marriage.

However, it will also leave the Church at odds with most of the rest of the worldwide Anglican Communion. …”

BBC News report.

With the GAFCON press conference to be held early tomorrow, Australian time.

World Environment Day – ‘Connect with nature’

“The message today for International Environment Day is ‘connect with nature’ and this is what Jesus constantly advised his followers to do. …

Take off your shoes to listen to the voice of God in nature, hear the cry of the earth…”

– Published by the Anglican Communion News Service. Mystical environmentalism has replaced the gospel and evangelism in far too many Anglican churches.

What can Rome learn from the Anglican Church?

Would it be “processes of synodal life”?

From a Vatican Radio report:

“‘Walking together on the way’ is the title of a new document to be published by the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission, whose members met this month in Erfurt, Germany.

Despite some ‘difficult conversations’ and ‘hard questions’ over the past year, the Anglican and Catholic theologians who make up ARCIC III managed, at the May 14th to 20th meeting, to conclude the first part of their mandate, finding agreement on ways in which the two Churches are structured at local, regional and universal levels. …”

Anglican Voices episode 1

Kevin Kallsen at Anglican TV has begun a new project – Anglican Voices.

His first interview is with Church Society’s Director, Dr. Lee Gatiss.

The Jesmond Consecration

Bishop Pryke is a godly man who is committed to the teaching of the Scriptures. He is a conscientious Anglican who believes the classic doctrine of the church as expressed in the 39 Articles and the Book of Common Prayer.

His godly character is attested by those who have observed him in ministry over many years. He is an entirely appropriate candidate for leadership among God’s people. The consecration is valid, there can be no doubt about that.

It is, however, irregular, but that irregularity is borne out of the desperate situation in which believers who remain within the Church of England find themselves. …

– In his latest post at Theological Theology, Principal of Moore Theological College, Dr. Mark Thompson, writes about the consecration of Jonathan Pryke, and why so many see it is necessary.

Jesmond Parish Church Press Statement — New Style English Bishop

“On St Athanasius’ Day, 2 May 2017, Jonathan Pryke, the senior minister, under its vicar, of Jesmond Parish Church, Newcastle upon Tyne, was consecrated a ‘bishop in the Church of God’.

This was by the Presiding Bishop of REACH SA (the Reformed Evangelical Anglican Church of South Africa), formerly known as CESA (the Church of England in South Africa) …

The service took place neither in a Church of England “place of worship” nor an unconsecrated place of worship designated under s.43 of the Mission and Pastoral Measure 2011. It did not take place in Jesmond Parish Church. The ceremony was according to the REACH SA consecration Holy Communion service with only REACH SA bishops taking part. …”

Read the whole statement from David Holloway, Vicar of Jesmond Parish Church.

Image: Jonathan Pryke at The Jesmond Conference — Reformation in the Nation and Church, March 2017. Bible Reading 1. Bible Reading 2.

Watch all the videos from the Conference for the theological background to the decision to consecrate a new bishop.

‘Not an attempt to storm Lambeth Palace’ — Peter Jensen

“GAFCON, a worldwide group of conservative Anglicans, has told Premier it’s not looking to break up the Church of England but is instead working to keep Anglican Communion united. …

Addressing the issue on Premier’s News Hour, Most Rev Peter Jensen, GAFCON’s General Secretary and a former Archbishop of Sydney, said: “There are many issues that divide us, where we have diverse opinions, and that’s OK — but some of them are so important that a stand has to be taken. A painful and costly stand.’…”

Listen to the interview here. (h/t Anglican Mainstream.)

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