I don’t have time to review Fr. Martin’s (“Jake’s”) blog but it seems to me he is being seriously disingenuous at best. The facts he refers to were on the ground before and his blog was fairly derogatory towards the same facts before. I think someone else observed that it is not theology to the Leftists, it’s politics. I don’t think Fr. Martin is being rational or fair, I think he is just playing politics.
A response to the Diocese of Virginia Letter can be found at:
Here’s another example. In a recent AP report following the Minnesota bridge tragedy, it was reported that the owner of the Minnesota Vikings football team had used his podium to call for a new stadium. There were even quotes, making it clear that Mr. Wilf wanted the new stadium built, after just a passing thought offering condolences to the victims. Obviously, this put Wilf in a very negative light. For some reason, folks in Minneapolis weren’t outraged, though.
Turns out, a similar article written by a local reporter used quotes from the same press conference. Only he put them into their proper context. Wilf was asked about the stadium and said something to the effect of “It’s true that we do want a new stadium deal, as part of a larger infrastructure upgrade for the entire city. But now is not the time to be discussing this sort of thing.” The national media ran with the most outrageous part of the quotes. And, from a capitalistic point of view, it is the “duty” of a corporation to look out for its own financial self-interest. If that’s the chief motivating factor, a news outlet can easily pick and choose what to report, and how to report—while still technically reporting factual information—in order to generate the most revenue.
We need to be better, more-informed consumers of media in general, and that includes news media.
RE: “Looking at the facts as presented, I cannot see any solid reasons why Mark Lawrence won’t get the consents this time.”
Well—there’s the same reason he was denied consent by Standing Committees as last time, which is that Mark Lawrence is a conservative.
And they don’t want another conservative bishop resisting ECUSA from the inside.
I don’t think it was ever about “he might leave with the diocese”—it was always about “oh shucks . . . another one who will resist our innovations . . . don’t need that, and with a little luck maybe we can force them to elect a ‘moderate’ “.
The only other reason I can think why he MIGHT get consents this time around is because it’s so publicly out there about why he was refused in the first place—transparently obvious, now that we know that none of the consents for the bishop of Virginia were canonically valid, and yet 815 did not invalidate that election.
I’m thrilled that South Carolina is going ahead and being faithful to the canons . . . either way it will give ECUSA Standing Committees another opportunity to 1) do something as transparent as deny a bishop for the second time over his theology [as well as, let’s not forget, a little payback from Mark Lawrence’s activities at General Conventions as deputy] or 2) remain consistent with their own stated philosophy back in 2003 with the approval for Bishop Robinson.
Will be interesting to watch.
“Well praise the Lord and pass the ammunition”! Father Jake actually seems to have reviewed the facts and made a rational analysis w/o favor of his political agenda. May others do likewise and bring some reason to the current indisposition.
Well this is easily explained: the news media is biased, inaccurate and uncaring.
News media, now being corporate run, is self-serving. Its interests are not journalism, but money. If there wasn’t “stunning new revelations” about a recent city council development, the fear is that fewer people would watch the local news. If fewer people watch, less money can be made.
Take the Weather Channel, for instance. It’s a business. Designed to make money for its owners and shareholders, presumably. Therefore, its self-promoting commercials have to be designed to pull in as many people as possible. “Is a tropical storm threatening the entire southeast? Stay tuned to find out!” The level of precision used to predict weather is much lower than on an independent site like weatherunderground or NOAA. TWC has something to gain by leading additional people to believe they are being threatened by severe weather.
FOX, NBC, CBS et al have something to gain by “creating” news. The interests of the viewer are not what’s at stake anymore than they are for media outlets like MTV or Comedy Central.
Fr. Jake seems to be making a very big leap from “Looking at the facts as presented, I cannot see any solid reasons why Mark Lawrence won’t get the consents this time” (emphasis mine) to “I’ll be very surprised if he does not.”
Believing that others will be as rational and fair as he is a very, very big assumption.
Larry: It’s the only way that Don will get a fair hearing. It is sad. So be it.
Here is a recent comment reported in the press by a rector of one of the separatist congregations (not Oakes):
“Attacking the properties of whole parishes of lay members is quite different, vindictive, [meant] to intimidate. It’s only when church executives have lost their spiritual authority that they have to resort to secular courts and rule by threats.”
Oakes has made similar comments, as have others. The point I’m trying to make is not any particular comment—it’s to say that the separatists have been active and vocal in the press for some time in no less biased a way than Getlein’s letter. Yet only Getlein appears to draw attacks on T19. A balanced discussion would assess the bias / honesty / “Christian-ness” of both sides’ comments.
Again, with the last part of your comment, you’re signaling out Getlein. I don’t think the actions of anyone involved in the litigation make anyone feel more favorably toward Episcopalians, Anglicans, or Christians. I think being involved in litigation (the result of actions on both sides) is very sad. I think God is disappointed and saddened by both sides.
More than half of Americans say US news organizations are politically biased, inaccurate, and don’t care about the people they report on, a poll published Thursday showed.
And in other “news” this morning . . . (1) I stepped out of the shower and my hair was wet; (2) my kids found something to argue over with each other; (3) I drove to work and my office was still here.
I wonder if they included the ENS is that survey? They are always objective and accurate.
David H, thank you for your response. But I think you are missing my point. I’m not familiar with the public statements by Mr. Oakes to which you allude but if they are posted on this blog we can certainly discuss them. When you do something wrong, that fact does not change by pointing out the mote in another’s eye as Jesus said. Mr. Getlein claims the mantle of Christianity. That means his actions and comments are watched by others, including those whom we would hope to bring into faith. There is nothing in his comments that would make me desire to be a Christian or any part of his denomination. Mr. Getlein’s tone and comments are not out of line in the secular, political arena but shouldn’t we strive for more as witnesses for the faith?
William (#61): I need an editor if I’m going to comment late in the evening. What I meant to say is that the test for, or the requirement of, honesty is a 2 way street—not that any one person’s honesty should depend on another’s.
But I don’t think honesty is the right word here. I think both sides believe what they’re saying—I just think that what they say is often colored by their biases or perceptions. If “bias” is our test, I don’t think Getlein’s letter is any more biased than Oakes’ statements.
Why can’t we split like Presbyterians? Because we believe in bishops!
We don’t believe that the local congregation is the primary ecclesial authority. When one groups in a church gets their underpants twisted, they can’t up and leave. We are all bound together by apostolic succession, by the authority of the episcopacy, and our common life together in the sacraments.
Presbyterians, and Reformed theology in general, doesn’t share this understanding of what the church is. The fact that we don’t easily split like Presbyterians is a blessing. The notion that an easy split is a good thing is a horrific notion that disavows so much of our Anglican heritage and falls into the lure of free church theology.
If you want easy split and free church theology, be my guest, but don’t think for a moment that it’s an Anglican thing; go join a Reformed congregation, you may be happier there.
#63’s comment is on target. When is the Anglican church going to enter the fight - actually enter it and prepare to fight these issues out? Regardless of what other mainstream churches say or the contumely dumped on our heads. Establish one’s identity, then defend it when it is attacked. Why is this a hard doctrine? INstead, we have the ABC, with whom I was once very sympathetic, waffling and talkingtalkingtalking. When the spiritual life one represents is under attack, turning the other cheek doesn’t cut it. LM
Look at all the entries above. How is it possible that knowing nothing - as if the case here - should generate such a horror vacui as this? 54 entries about mere animosities. I certainly look forward to the public authorites getting involved so that actual evidence becomes available. LM
I know what the first practical use would be—time machine snooze alarm clocks to set back time ten minutes so you could sleep in a few more minutes and still get to work on time.
How interesting BabyBlue should use a picture of Dolores Umbridge.
Just this past Sunday our pastor in his sermon made reference to the mainstream churches being like the Ministry of Magic. They are spending all their time denying that the Dark Lord (Satan) and his influence (sin) exist, rather than fighting him or allowing people to be equipped with the tools to fight him. Our pastor said it was up to us as Christians to become the Order of the Phoenix and counter the mainstream churches even if we face mocking or persecution from the mainstream as a result.
In the ten years I’ve gone to my present church, our pastors have been fairly reluctant to criticize or comment on what is going on in other churches, but there have been several times in the past few months where the gloves have come off.
No 6- for time travel to happen you need the first timeline in which we move from dinosaurs to present day to future to the invention of the time machine.
Then during the first visit a parallel universe is created in which someone did go back…and a paralel universe for each subsequent trip and that is where things get REALLY complicated.
For a general idea watch Donnie Darko then read a synopsis of it on the internet
Moral of the story: don’t try to bounce kangaroos, ‘cos they can jump higher than the woolliest sheep.
Or: Old South Wales doesn’t trump New South Wales.
When the Episcopal church broke off from the CoE at the time of the Revolutionay War did the Episcopal churches pay the CoE for the Anglican churches or did they just take them as theirs?
Here are a few Proverbs to tide us over:
17:15, Acquitting the guilty and condemning the innocent—the Lord detests them both.
17:26, It is not good to punish an innocent man, or to flog officials for their integrity.
18:5, It is not good to be partial to the wicked or to deprive the innocent of justice.
19:5, A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who pours out lies will not go free.
19: 9, A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who pours out lies will perish.
21:28 A false witness will perish, and whoever listens to him will be destroyed forever.
24:28 Do not testify against your neighbor without cause, or use your lips to deceive.
29:12, If a ruler listens to lies, all his officials become wicked. (The ecclesiastical court)
If it will be possible it must already have happened. It hasn’t happened. Ergo, it isn’t possible.
Excellent find!!! I can’t wait for the outcome. The forensic accountant for the Diocese is one of the best around.
Yeh, that’s right. A committee of the diocese of Virginia, of which Lee is the bishop, comes up with a protocol which is abandoned for lawsuits—but Bishop Peter Lee had absolutely nothing to do with any of it at all.
You know, like when a CEO has a committee that comes up with a protocol, but he has absolutely nothing to do with it at all.
That was an interesting broadcast Godfrey - John Newsome, the DA, and all. John does well to recuse himself from the police investigation since he is probably an unindicted co-conspirator (Ha). Sorry, I got your name wrong in a previous blog. We orthodox are such scatterbrains.
Much woulld be clarified and simplified if we could only gree on this, that homosexuality is a serious handicap - handicap taken in the context of state and federal definitions. It would then be a reasonable and comprehensible context, and such protections and limitations on homosexual rights would have a useable framework for discussion.
I suppose this is too easy to have any chance of succeeding, but if it did, then the law could place limitations on what jobs homosexuals could and could not hold as it has placed restrictions on other handicaps. LM
Wouldn’t time travelers have to also travel through space since the earth is moving as the galaxy expands? Traveling back and forth in time would mean one would also have to find out where the earth was, is or would be, at a given time, wouldn’t it?
This is now a police matter. You don’t have to fread—you can just listen to the radio:
Well, now the rubber hits the road. I think there will be some smoke from the burning rubber.
And William #2:
You can bet your bottom dollar that ABP Akinola and particularly Bp Minns went into an in depth discernment of bringing Grace and Fr. Armstrong into the CANA fold. They’re no dummies either. BP Bena will be here in the fall for some Anglican business. Strange how all these “orthodox” Clergs feel comfortable dealing with Fr. Armstrong.
The local National Public Radio News reported tonight that the Diocese of Colorado has referred this matter to the local authorities.
To Candace, #39:
Candace, you might want to perform a more thorough research of the facts. Grace Church did receive approval from the Standing Committee in 1989, to do a 15 year, 3 phase, $6,500,000 renovation of the property. I challenge you to look back into the Standing Committee minutes and find exactly that. Further, I have a question for you: why do you have such contempt for someone who has always been so good to you and why do you have such a vested interest into a parish to which you have contributed so little financially? It is hard to understand rationally.
And to Gregory: The charges are unsupported by evidence. Just because Bishop Savanarola and his minions charge something doesn’t make it true. I’m “orthodox” and I don’t consider myself a fool as you so charge. I really resent that. Your blog is pathetic.
David H, to answer your question, yes I am extremely consistent. And actually sir, honesty is not a 2 way street; I need to be honest whether you are, or not.
I think Brian that he sent off a trial balloon that turned out to be lead. Too much blowback. Things could get very interesting if we have a fall Primate meeting.
I do hope that Rev. Armstrong is innocent; but as Sarah points out on SF, we really don’t know. There are aspects of the allegations that are troubling; however, there are many reasons to suspect that the accusers are not acting in good faith. Much of the allegations involve tax issues which transparently weakens the Bishop’s case. Moreover, the whole process of trying a priest who has left the denomination already is clearly not designed to discover the truth, but to undermine him in the tug of war that must be going on in Colorado Springs between different factions of parishoners.
A deeper concern is how CANA comes out in all this, and the great risk Archbishop Akinola and Bishop Minns took by bringing the parish in under Rev. Armstrong’s leadership. These circumstances did not come to light after that decision was made; I do sincerely hope that ++Akinola and +Minns also considered the evidence before and are not learning about it after. While a “cardinal parish” under a gifted leader is undoubtedly a “great prize” for a new missionary organization, it could also be a poison pill.
It would also be reassuring to many to hear from Rev. Armstrong’s Bishop that this was looked into carefully before CANA admitted him and his congregation.
For any thoughtful person to believe, after reading the evidence that led to the diocesan court’s unanimous and comprehensive verdict against Don Armstrong, that not only the bishop of Colorado but a panel of well-reputed and disinterested clergy and laypeople have been driven in this matter by some sort of satanic animus is simply delusional.
No, no, we’re not insisting on “satanic” animus. I’ll settle for just plain animus, which is a perfectly rational explanation for this “trial”. Also, I wouldn’t put too much stock in that “unanimous” verdict, as the “court” was packed with the bishop’s own clergy. The verdict was a foregone conclusion, another outcome was literally impossible.
Don Armstrong thought, as he told the parish meeting last spring, that he deserved to be paid more than he was, so he gave himself a half-million dollar raise.
No kidding? And I thought he was denying the charges. And you say he’s confessed. What gives?
the state of Colorado and the United States will find it actionable
Not a chance that this will happen. None. Zero.
The tragedy here is for the “orthodox” to make such fools of themselves
Thanks for the concern…
William (#59), I’m sure there are strategic decisions being made on both sides—by 815 & co on how to pressure separatists, and by Common Cause, Akinola, & co regarding how to hasten TEC’s demise (or, to be more charitable, it’s replacement).
I read a lot regarding the Virginia litigation, and if you think Getlein’s letter is worthy of being excoriated because it is unChristian and imputes bad motives to the CANA folks, I have to ask: are you consistent? When Jim Oakes and others in the separatist congregations excoriate TEC and the Diocese, do you comment on their unChristian terminology or on the fact that they’re imputing bad motives to Bishop Lee and others?
Honesty is a 2 way street. So is litigation.
Logically, the time machine should be Patent No. 00000001…
“The tragedy here is for the “orthodox” to make such fools of themselves about Don Armstrong that they look like fools in general”
I say that the orthodox are quite measured in their tone and opinions - all of them. We look to the evidence, and frankly, the evidence that looks so convincing to you looks specious at best to me and others. The evidence has as much internal confusion as did the case against Jesus Christ.
I’m not saying that Fr. Armstrong is innocent, I’m saying that I am far from convinced. I also shall not forget how Fr. Armstrong was treated in the last year. It is difficult for me to conceive of the guile necessary to produce such persecution.
David H #58, the tone of Mr. Getlein’s letter is lacking in what we would hope for in representation of a Christian denomination. Using terms like “beset . . . hijack . . make off ... trying to appropriate” impute very bad motives to the CANA congregations and their leaders in Virginia. There are examples in Texas and Florida of TEC Dioceses negotiating settlement of property issues with dissenting congregations. Are those TEC leaders somehow less “honor bound” as Mr. Getlein puts it, to preserve TEC property for “future generations?” Could you not possibly ask yourself if something else other than what Mr. Getlein says (see my post at 11 above) is at work here? We can agree to disagree about this, but at least can we not be honest about it?
If people of the future become able to travel to the past, why don’t they come back and tell us how they did it?
2 other points, then I’m done:
1. Those on the other side of this are constantly talking to the media and making comments no less one-sided than those in Getlein’s letter. Why (other than the obvious—that this is not a TEC-friendly site) is Getlein’s letter so surprising or worthy of vilification?
2. #15, you think that having the majority of the local congregation decide this is best no matter what side you’re on from a Free Exercise perspective. Believe me when I say I’m a big fan of democracy. But what your statement says is: no matter what the rules of the religion are, government should be able to impose rule by the majority on it. Doesn’t exactly seem to fit with the free exercise of Catholicism, Episcopalianism, or other such religions, does it?
For any thoughtful person to believe, after reading the evidence that led to the diocesan court’s unanimous and comprehensive verdict against Don Armstrong, that not only the bishop of Colorado but a panel of well-reputed and disinterested clergy and laypeople have been driven in this matter by some sort of satanic animus is simply delusional. This former Episcopal priest’s case is a simple matter: Don Armstrong thought, as he told the parish meeting last spring, that he deserved to be paid more than he was, so he gave himself a half-million dollar raise. However one judges his impulse or his action, most would agree that he went a bit further and a bit more covertly (certainly the parish was unaware that it and its benefactors were paying for a two lengthy, expensive and tax-free college educations for Don’s children) than most of us who from time to time feel overworked and underpaid.
So what? How big is all this? On one level, small indeed. Don Armstrong succumbed to one of the seven deadlies, but for a human being so to do is hardly earthshaking. It is surely unbecoming, and the state of Colorado and the United States will find it actionable, but in the great scheme of things it is only tawdry. For a rector to dishonor and traduce a venerable and vital parish is, however, at least newsworthy. All of Colorado Springs and all of Colorado, Episcopalian or Anglican or polka-dotted, finds it so. Others’ prurient interest shames us, but if that were where the Armstrong matter ended, we could blush and go on. Unhappily there is something much larger-scale here. Don’s fall and Grace’s public misery are not the terrible part of this spectacle. Don will get his desserts and, we can pray, be improved; Grace will recover through the faith, good will and sacrificial giving of its people. Christ’s wider church will be harder to repair.
The authentic tragedy overarching Armstrong’s breach of trust and Grace’s heartache is his error’s politicization in the diocese’s and a wider national and world church’s discussion of genuinely important issues—the very issues Don has used to cloak his wrongdoing. This blog’s current tone of denial is not really defensiveness about Don Armstrong (for surely it will not maintain if he is not only defrocked but found guilty in civil and criminal court) but about the “orthodoxy” he has purported to embody. The tragedy here is for the “orthodox” to make such fools of themselves about Don Armstrong that they look like fools in general—and no one pays attention to them. For us all to listen to each other mindfully and respectfully about today’s great ecclesiological and theological matters is paramount. This scandal so undermines a far more important obligation.
Let’s not make simple greed any bigger and damaging than it is in itself. I do not derogate or dismiss those misled by some quotidian sinner but many will. The tone of this blog’s discussion evidence of the real disaster here—making Don Armstrong more than a small-timer who needs our prayers as he faces not only diocesan justice but a likely criminal process.
And also for the record, Russ Palmore was a member of TEC’s Executive Council at the time.
His and Lee’s agreement with the Protocol up to the point of a buyout amount was in the spirit of conciliation, more akin to the agreement between the presbytery and Middle Sandy church in the post above than to what Beers, Sauls, and 815 suddenly forced on the Dio of Va.
I’m surprised no one has commented. I find it odd that the ABC chose a date that he had to know would be before the ‘deadline’ and yet just extended it. Although, I suppose it would be bad form to not accept ‘late’ replies.
#20: No definition of division in the statute. No precedent for its application.
#15: Interesting word choices that reveal the problem here: has the denomination (TEC) divided, or are people choosing to sever ties with / disaffiliate from it?
#48: Dale’s right. There’s just no way to do that constitutionally—can you really imagine a court deciding which part of a church has departed from doctrine / historical principles? Regardless of the words used, it’s impossible.
Finally, as a fellow HP fan, I am amused and intrigued by the Umbridge comparison, regardless of my sympathy or lack thereof for BabyBlue’s position in all this.
Wow, this is the real thing folks…
#1: The most pernicious factor in this case is the sudden intervention of something calling itself “TEC”...i.e. the alleged “national church” as a party to this dispute.
It is arguable that the diocese has an organic connection to the many parishes and missions with which the bishop, on behalf of the diocese with which he is in communion.
However, there is no organic connection between this fiction called “the national church” and the parishes in dispute in California.
It was only the middle of the 20th century…way late in the game…that there was even a notion of a “national” church. Everyone understood that the PB was a purely honorific role, and there were no pretensions to either a “primatial” role, or a “national church” jurisdiction.
The deeper question is why the bishops of TEC have spent blood, sweat, tears and mucho “dinero” filing suits against Christian congregations…and precious little b,l, s, t and $ listening to the call to repentance uttered repeatedly by those who “hierarchiacly” are above them: the real primates of the AC
I suppose you could attend your grandparents’ wedding or meet yourself. Interesting how the mathematics and the science eventually catch up with the imagination.
Return to blog homepage
Return to Mobile view (headlines)