- Is GAFCON the problem? – Dr. Peter Jensen responds to criticism of GAFCON by the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion.
- The Grace of God – or the World of the West? – we featured this challenging address at GAFCON II by Dr. Mike Ovey, who went home to be with the Lord on 7th January.
- Dick Lucas on Mark’s Gospel – a wonderful resource from St. Helen’s Bishopsgate.
- Remnant in Scotland finding hope through GAFCON – The Rector of St. Thomas’ Church in Edinburgh shares something of the crisis which has hit the Scottish Episcopal Church through its accommodation to secular culture.
- Dr Gavin Ashenden resigns as Chaplain to the Queen – This story has gained some traction in the secular press.
- New Women’s Ministry Stream at Moore College – Jane Tooher outlines Moore College’s new women’s ministry study stream.
- Proposed bill ‘doesn’t protect religious freedom’ – The Diocese of Sydney has told a Senate Inquiry the proposed bill on same-sex marriage does not sufficiently protect freedom of religion.
Here are a few items from around the Anglican Church of Australia this week.
- Christmas Pastoral Letter from the Stuart Robinson, Bishop of Canberra & Goulburn.
- Archbishop of Perth not returning to his duties before retiring early.
- Archbishop of Melbourne releases video message for Christmas.
- New book on Samuel Marsden by David Pettett launched in Sydney.
- Moore College offers new Women’s ministry study option.
(Image courtesy Anglican Church of Australia.)
“Archbishop Glenn Davies, in his Presidential address opening the 2016 Synod, or Parliament, of the Anglican Church, has spoken of Sydney’s urban sprawl and efforts to establish new churches on the fringe of the city…” – Read Russell Powell’s report at SydneyAnglicans.net.
Read Archbishop Davies’ Address (PDF file).
Statement from the Global South Primates and GAFCON Primates Council Concerning Same-sex Unions. An important statement coming out of the Global South meeting in Cairo.
Audio files from the 2016 ACL Synod Briefing. Get up to speed on what’s coming up at Sydney Synod this week.
Justin Taylor has this appreciation at The Gospel Coalition.
Church Society Director Lee Gatiss has posted another:
“Alec was a pillar of the evangelical Anglican establishment in the second half of the twentieth century, and a terrific example of a Reformed evangelical Bible commentator.
As the ‘church militant here on earth’ becomes increasingly bereft of those in that great generation, we must pray fervently for the continuation of their legacy — especially for the production of more Bible-loving, theologically-rigorous resources which feed warm-hearted, Christ-exalting preaching, but also for more Anglicans with his love for the word and for Reformation truths.”
Update: Terry Johnson has also posted this Personal Remembrance at Reformation 21:
“Each weekday the entire college gathered for lunch. The food typically was English-bland, and 30 years after Victory in Europe Day, in war rationing quantities. The fellowship was wonderful, but the highlight (besides the tea) was Mr. Motyer’s closing prayer following a review of the college’s life.
The prayer before the meal was very brief. “For these and all thy mercies we give Thee thanks, O Lord, in our Saviour’s name, amen.” Motyer was devout but not sanctimonious. It was time to eat; no sense delaying the hungry.
The prayer following the meal was long, and worth the price of admission. He was no Prayer Book cripple. He prayed as he preached, with an Irishman’s passion and filled with Scripture. I never missed lunch, despite the food, because I didn’t want to miss the prayer.”
Additional note: His recently-published “Psalms by the Day — a New Devotional Translation”, published by Christian Focus, is a wonderful example of Motyer’s warm-hearted, Christ-honouring approach to Scripture.
– Report from Nine News.
“A Pakistani court has granted bail to the lead suspect in the brutal 2014 killings of a young Christian couple, burned alive in a brick kiln where they worked as bonded labourers, itself illegal in Pakistan…”
– This report from World Watch Monitor.
Earlier related story from SydneyAnglicans.net.
“An extraordinary general meeting of the Evangelical Union (EU) has seen the organisation formally reject proposed changes to its constitution that would remove a mandatory faith-based declaration for new members.
In a secret ballot, members voted 71-1 opposing the proposed changes, well short of the two-thirds majority required for constitutional amendments.
A packed Holme Reading Room heard over an hour of speeches from members who supported the declaration, most claiming it is inextricably linked to the society’s identity. Not a single speaker spoke in favour of its removal…”
– News from Honi Soit.
Eternity Newspaper has this report.
- Sydney University Evangelical Union ‘facing deregistration’
- ‘University of Sydney’s Evangelical Union shouldn’t have to give up its faith in fight against discrimation’
“A five-year tussle between the University of Sydney Union and the Evangelical Union has finally reached an impasse, with the university now unequivocally stating that the EU must remove the requirement for members to sign a faith-based declaration, and threatening them with deregistration from the clubs and societies program if they fail to comply by 31 March…“
– This report from Eternity newspaper.
Story from Honi Soit, 13 March 2016.
What we Believe, featuring a video from past President Hugh Chilton.
The Doctrinal Basis of the EU
- The divine inspiration and infallibility of Holy Scripture as originally given, and its supreme authority in all matters of faith and conduct.
- The unity of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit in the Godhead.
- The universal guilt and sinfulness of man since the Fall rendering man subject to God’s wrath and condemnation.
- Redemption from the guilt, penalty and power of sin, only through the sacrificial death, as our Representative and Substitute, of Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Son of God.
- The conception of Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit and His birth by the Virgin Mary.
- The bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
- The necessity of the work of the Holy Spirit to make the death of Jesus Christ effective to individual sinners, granting each one repentance towards God and faith in Jesus Christ.
- The indwelling and work of the Holy Spirit in the believer.
- The expectation of the personal return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Board of the Australian College of Theology has announced (PDF) that Dr. Martin Sutherland, currently Academic Dean of Laidlaw College in Auckland, will be the new Dean and Chief Executive Officer of the ACT, from July 2016.
Colleges affiliated with the ACT include Youthworks College, Mary Andrews College, SMBC, and the Presbyterian and Baptist colleges. (Photo: Laidlaw College.)