Church of England bishops ‘block’ demand for transgender prayer – update

“Church of England bishops have blocked the introduction of a new prayer celebrating a transgender person’s change of sex.

The House of Bishops was strongly urged to draw up the ‘baptism-style’ services for sex-change Christians by the Church’s ‘Parliament’, the General Synod, last summer. …” – Story from Mail Online.

However, also see this: Welcoming Transgender People – an update – Church of England website, dated 21 January 2018:

“Following the debate and vote at General Synod in July 2017 on Welcoming Transgender People, the House of Bishops has prayerfully considered whether a new nationally commended service might be prepared to mark a gender transition.

The Bishops are inviting clergy to use the existing rite Affirmation of Baptismal Faith. New guidance is also being prepared on the use of the service. …”

Why I can’t in conscience write for the Church of England Newspaper any more

“I have been contributing articles regularly for the Church of England Newspaper (CEN) for the past ten years and have found its editor Colin Blakely very congenial to write for.  He is courteous to his writers in contrast to the editors of a couple more thoroughly evangelical publications I have written for.

It is a personally wretched decision for me to have to stop writing for Colin. But his decision to become a trustee of the Ozanne Foundation, which is actively campaigning to change the received biblical teaching of the Church of England on sexual ethics, has made this necessary. …”

– The Rev. Julian Mann, Vicar of the Parish Church of the Ascension, Oughtibridge in Sheffield Diocese, explains his decision, at Anglican Mainstream. (Photo: Julian Mann with Archbishop Ben Kwashi.)

Related: Workers and Wolves – William Taylor on Romans 16:1-23.

Update: Kevin Kallsen and Gavin Ashenden discuss the Ozanne Foundation fallout at Anglican Unscripted #358 – Just Jesus, not ‘just love’ silly.

Senior CofE bishop to front campaign for LGBT inclusion

“The Bishop of Liverpool, Rt Rev Paul Bayes, is to chair a new charity aimed at promoting greater acceptance of LGBT people by working with religious organisations around the world. He has said

He has been named as chair of the Ozanne Foundation, whose director Jayne Ozanne is a high-profile Anglican activist for LGBT inclusivity. …”

Report. (Photo: Diocese of Liverpool.)

One of the Trustees of the pro-LGBT organisation is Colin Blakely, Editor of The Church of England Newspaper, while Steve Chalke is a member of the Council of Reference.

Related:

As Christ is to His church – William Taylor (Video, 2013).

Confidence in God and the word he has given us – Mark Thompson (February 2014).

Appointment of American Bishop leads to split with Nigerian DioceseReform statement (May 2016).

A Church Near You

The Church of England has a dedicated website to find your closest Anglican church – with the message that, for most people in the UK, their local church is less than a mile away.

If you are looking for an Anglican Church in Sydney this Christmas, check out Sydney’s own ChurchNearYou.com.au.

‘Get with the Program’ — The Church of England votes to ordain Women Bishops — 2014

“Writing about the age of John Milton, the British author A. N. Wilson once tried to explain to modern secular readers that there had once been a time when bishops of the Church of England were titanic figures of conviction who were ready to stand against the culture.

‘It needs an act of supreme historical imagination to be able to recapture an atmosphere in which Anglican bishops might be taken seriously,’ he wrote, ‘still more, one in which they might be thought threatening.’…”

This 2014 piece from Albert Mohler is worth re-reading to remember how much has changed in such a short time in the Church of England.

And do pray for those gospel-minded leaders in the C of E, that they will be filled with wisdom, and will stand firm in the faith.

Related:

St. Helen’s Bishopsgate relationships with other deanery churches ‘temporarily impaired’.

Anglican Unscripted #357 – Welby revokes Carey’s Permission to Officiate.

A letter of congratulations to the new appointee to the See of Canterbury from a leading Evangelical (1860)

“I would like to extend my congratulations and best wishes to the Reverend John Henry Newman on his appointment to the See of Canterbury. Although we may differ over what some might consider trifles … I am sure that the Reverend Newman loves the Lord Jesus, and more crucially, loves the Church of England.

– Melvin Tinker has written this satirical letter from ‘Bishop John Charle Ryle’.

And a good reminder to pray for the Church of England.

‘New Bishop of London … refuses to say where she stands’

“The controversial new Bishop of London refused yesterday to say where she stands on the the Church of England’s most damaging division.

The Right Reverend Sarah Mullally left tens of thousands of worshippers in her new diocese guessing about her views on gay rights after giving a high-profile broadcast interview. …

Bishop Mullally said the CofE has ‘a real diversity’ and is entering ‘a period of reflection’.

Bishop Mullally withheld her own thinking in an interview for BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme in which she was repeatedly pressed for her opinion. …

– Story from Mail Online. Photo: Diocese of London.

Related:

Which Way, Evangelicals? There is Nowhere to Hide – Albert Mohler.

“There will be no place to hide. The forces driving this revolution in morality will not allow evasion or equivocation. Every pastor, every church, and every Christian organization will soon be forced to declare an allegiance to the Scriptures and to the Bible’s teachings on marriage and sexual morality, or to affirm loyalty to the sexual revolution.”

When ‘Discernment’ Leads to Disaster – Albert Mohler.

Bishop-elect’s radio interview struggle reveals Church’s unresolved dilemmas – Andrew Symes.

“She would have known that it would come. She would have prepared for it, rehearsing her lines, perhaps with coaches, wanting to appear wise, generous, compassionate, authoritative. It came, finally, at the end of the interview; the dreaded ’Tim Farron question’ – ‘do you think homosexual relationships are sinful?’

Like an England batsman in the nets in Australia she had practiced for this moment … I felt for her as she attempted to answer the inevitable question, and she flannelled and waffled, a combination of the cringeworthy and the hilarious (see transcript below).”

Listen from 1 hour 52 minutes into the audio.

Next Bishop of London announced

“The next Bishop of London will be the Rt Revd Sarah Mullally DBE, currently Bishop of Crediton, 10 Downing Street has announced today.

Bishop Sarah will succeed the Rt Revd and Right Hon Richard Chartres KCVO, who retired as Bishop of London earlier this year. …”

– Announcement from the Diocese of London.

And a message from the Bishop-designate.

From St. Helen’s Bishopsgate:

“We offer Bishop Sarah our congratulations and assure her of our prayers as she takes up the significant role as Bishop of London. The Church of England is committed to ‘mutual flourishing’. We look forward to Bishop Sarah working for this within the diocese of London.”

St. Helen’s Bishopsgate relationships with other deanery churches ‘temporarily impaired’

From St. Helen’s Bishopsgate (via their Twitter account):

“After William Taylor’s sermon last Sunday on Romans 16 (), he met with the Area Dean on Monday, and this is his subsequent letter.”

From the letter:

“Our temporarily impaired relationship means that we shall no longer take part in some activities within the deanery that imply partnership in the Gospel. This will impact a number of areas including the clergy chapter, prayers in deanery synod, and deanery services.

In other respects we shall remain full and active members of the deanery and diocesan structures.”

Click here to read the full letter. (And do watch or listen to the sermon linked above.)

‘Rival church set up in gay marriage row’

“Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, faces a new threat to the unity of the Church of England as a rival Anglican church announced it will hold its first ordination service for nine ministers.

Andy Lines, missionary bishop for the Anglican Mission in England (AMiE), will ordain nine ministers in Tower Hamlets, east London, on Thursday. …”

– Story from The Times. (Subscription.)

Related:

1.) The story mentions plans by AMiE to plant churches, as seen in this encouraging video published in September 2016.

2.) Here’s a statement from Revd Lee McMunn, Mission Director, Anglican Mission in England.

Excerpt:

“We are convinced that England needs many new Anglican churches that are sharing the great news about Jesus our Saviour and Lord, and forming communities of his loving disciples, who base their lives and worldview on Scripture, and are empowered by his Spirit.

We want to play our part in the spreading of the gospel in England. We treasure the crucified and risen Jesus and we want to tell as many as possible that he can transform their lives. Indeed, that he can change where they will spend eternity. We know that many faithful Anglicans remain within the structures of the Church of England.

However, some are finding their entry to ordination blocked by liberal clergy who do not believe orthodox Anglican teachings, like Jesus being the only way to be saved.

Moreover, an increasing number of those exploring ordination now have no interest in joining what they see as a fundamentally compromised denomination. They are distressed by the number of senior clergy who are keen to bless what the Bible calls sin. Many are now talking to about a different way of being an Anglican in England. They are discovering the joy of belonging to a network where church leaders actually believe the historic Reformed faith in the 39 Articles, and where clergy are fully convinced that people need to be saved from the judgement to come.

They are also experiencing the delight of being led by bishops, who all believe that faith in Jesus is necessary for salvation; who uphold the supreme authority of the Bible in all matters of belief and behaviour; and who are personally involved in the lives of the clergy.”

(Formatting added.)

3.) Commentary from Julian Mann:

“The Anglican Mission in England, launched by the Archbishops of the Global Anglican Future Conference in 2011 to support biblically orthodox Anglican ministry outside the Church of England, is now coming of age.

With the upcoming ordination of nine men on Thursday (December 7th) in East London by Andy Lines, consecrated in June by the Anglican Church in North America as missionary bishop to Europe, AMIE can no longer be accused of being an angry adolescent jumping up and down on the side-lines. …”

Church Society Podcast with Rod Thomas, Bishop of Maidstone

In the latest Church Society podcast, Ros Clarke chats with Rod Thomas, Bishop of Maidstone, about his job, the situation in the Church of England today, and the unexpected joy of confirmations.

Listen here.

Anglican Unscripted interviews Lorna Ashworth

In the latest edition of Anglican Unscripted, Kevin Kallsen interviews Lorna Ashworth.

“Unless the gospel is being taught in a church – it is not a church.”

If you assumed the gospel didn’t need to be preached afresh in the Church of England, watch this.

Related:

Andrew Symes, of Anglican Mainstream, writes:

“With unfortunate timing on its part, the C of E launched its new gender fluid policy just after the resignation of Lorna Ashworth from General Synod and Archbishops’ Council.

The well-respected conservative evangelical had warned of the policy of ‘good disagreement’ being a front for a slide into heresy. This was brushed off on Friday as a complete exaggeration by Bishops, and also by many evangelical clergy on social media. She does not need to say anything more. The headlines on Monday morning about ‘Valuing all God’s Children’ have proved her point.”

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