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A free floating commentary on culture, politics, economics, and religion based on a passionate commitment to the truth and a desire graciously to refute that which is contrary to it….
"He must hold firm to the sure word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to confute those who contradict it."
--Titus 1:9, Revised Standard Version
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Many of us in the Anglican blogosphere have been saddened this week to learn that our friend and one-time fellow Anglican blogger (now a Roman Catholic) Fr. Al Kimel is giving up blogging for personal reasons. Pontifications has been one of the best theological blogs on the web, applauded by Catholics, Anglicans, Orthodox, with a very large and loyal readership.
It was near the top of the non-Anglican links list we've compiled, but haven't yet had a chance to format and post on our side-bar here.
We first read the news on Orthodox priest Fr. Stephen Freeman's blog, Glory to God for All Things, which Fr. Al introduced many of us to. Todd Granger, Brad Drell and Sarah Hey of Stand Firm all picked up the news and added their comments.
Just this morning, I read Ralph Webb's comments on his blog, Anglican Action.
Namarie indeed, Father Kimel. But as you say goodbye, do know that your faithful service to our Lord and your work to renew the Episcopal Church has not been in vain. You have inspired people who you do not know and who have never met you to stay faithful to our Lord and Savior. We remember your work on the Baltimore Declaration. In your departure from TEC, our loss was Rome's gain. We thank you for providing us with, for a few years, one of the most spiritually sound, astute, and challenging blogs out there. And if our Lord ever leads you to take up blogging again, many of us will be grateful.
May our Lord grant the healing that you need, for "the hands of a healer are the hands of a king" (Tolkien again, rough paraphrase from memory).
This elf says "Amen!" to all of what my fellow bloggers have written so eloquently, and adds my profound thanks to Fr. Al for Pontifications and all he contributed to TitusOneNine as well in many comment threads. And it is worth noting that Fr. Al's essay "The Grand Question" holds the records for most comments ever on TitusOneNine, with a staggering 561 comments!
May the Lord bless you and your family Fr. Al and grant you His peace.
Note: at least for the moment, it seems impossible to access Fr. Al's original blog (which was hosted by CaNNet), thus the original post of "the Grand Question" which Kendall excerpted and linked on Titusonenine, is not accessible online. Fortunately, Fr. Al seems to have preserved that entry on his page of entries on the theme of Justification on his new blog:
Look for entry # XXXIV which begins:
The justification of sinners—this is “the grand question,” declared Richard Hooker, “which hangeth yet in controversy between us and the Church of Rome.” Hooker notes that Anglicans and Catholics agree on many points about justification. They agree that all human beings are sinners and need to be reconciled to God. They agree that God alone is the efficient cause of justification: the justification of sinners is the work of the Holy Trinity. They agree that no one attains justification but by the merits of Christ Jesus: we are justified by grace alone for the sake of Christ, on the basis of his saving death on the cross.
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