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CANADA: Diocese of Caledonia Capitulates to Revisionist Canadian Bishops over Worley Election

CANADA: Diocese of Caledonia Capitulates to Revisionist Canadian Bishops over Worley Election

PHOTO: Archbishop John Privett, Metropolitan of BC and Yukon

By David W. Virtue, DD
June 5, 2017

Accusing the House of Bishops of British Columbia and Yukon of fomenting schism in the wider Anglican Communion, including bullying, hypocrisy, incivility, intolerance and silencing the conservative voice, the Diocese of Caledonia promptly rolled over and said they would accept their decision not to invite the Rev. Jacob Worley to be the next bishop. He can go pound sand.

Worley was unanimously elected as the next Bishop of Caledonia by the diocese. Subsequently, he was turned down for the position by the province's house of bishops because he held a view "contrary to the Doctrine or Discipline of the Anglican Church of Canada", a church of such loose doctrine, discipline and morality that very few before Worley have accomplished this immensely difficult feat, wrote tongue-in-cheek orthodox Canadian blogger, David of Samizdat. The diocese will now go through the whole process again.

Worley did a brief stint as a priest in the Anglican Mission in America (AMiA) a fatal theological and ecclesiastical "sin" apparently, which just might have led him into becoming a "righteous" liberal/revisionist bishop capable of emptying his own diocese by promoting homosexual marriage.

The capitulation by the Diocese of Caledonia was weak and cowardly, especially as the Anglican Church of Canada is virtually on its knees with fast dying dioceses across the country. From Newfoundland to Quebec and Toronto, they are all hemorrhaging parishes, parishioners and money faster than a previously blocked sewer line. Every week VOL obtains a list of the latest closures in Eastern Canada and it does not make for pretty reading.

All the Diocese of Caledonia had to do was make a call to Bishop Charlie Masters of the Anglican Network in Canada (joined at the hip with the Anglican Church in North America) and let the chips fall where they may. The ACoC has not got the money for a long drawn out legal fight.

Back in 2009, VOL reported that the ACoC was in financial trouble. They slashed their budget by $1.3 million and laid off seven staff. The treasurer also resigned, all to reduce to $800,000 and to try to put an end to a pattern of incurring deficits. "With a church in numerical and financial decline and many wealthy parishes leaving the denomination, the ACofC will ultimately lose. Quite simply put: no gospel, no future."

It's as if Zhukov and the Russian army had begun to drive the Germans off of Russian soil in 1945, (having said a lot of nasty things about Nazism) only to raise the white flag of surrender and let the Germans take Moscow. The Germans had their backs to the wall and so has the Anglican Church of Canada. The Diocese of Caledonia gave up without a fight, even though it ripped the two ACoC dioceses for being schismatic.

As David of Samizdat observed, "There are two sad aspects to this: first, the fact that Worley was banned from being bishop on such a flimsy pretext and second, that the diocese is going along with it. Their accommodation to the liberal juggernaut reminds me of the rather flawed advice that politician Clayton Williams gave to potential rape victims: 'if it's inevitable, just relax and enjoy it'."

"The Anglican Church of Canada loves to have a few tame conservatives on hand to be conveniently paraded whenever extra evidence of inclusion is needed; Caledonia has been tamed. The diocese should be wary, though: after rape comes pillage," he wrote.

Worley was elected bishop of the diocese on April 22, but on May 15, the House of Bishops of the ecclesiastical province of British Columbia and Yukon announced it was objecting to his election, citing ministry he had performed in the United States for the province of Rwanda. As specified in provincial canons, the bishops said, their decision was final.

It should be noted that the Province of the Anglican Church of Rwanda is a full partner in the Anglican Communion, so it is the actions of these two dioceses that is schismatic, not the other way around. What these two dioceses were in fact saying is that they did not approve of Worley being a temporary member of the AMiA, an Anglican entity that saw the wrath of U.S. Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold when it first came into existence back in 2000.

It is deeply ironic that the Rev. Gwen Andrews, who is in charge of the diocese, said at the time that Worley's election had all the hallmarks of "God being near them at the election," and it was a very "spiritual election". She then went on to say, "I have never experienced an election where the power of God seemed to be so present." Really! Then why did she and the diocese cave in so quickly? "If God be for us who can be against us," she might have argued. She didn't. She allowed the revisionist steam roller to go right over the diocese.

Well, it seems those against her and Mr. Worley were greater than God and got their way! Now, what if the diocese elects a run of the mill candidate, a moderate, or worse, an outright liberal or revisionist, will she say this is a "spiritual election" and go on to say that this is the will of God? If she does, she will be called a hypocrite, possibly worse. And no one will be fooled, least of all VOL.

"We need things in this diocese to return to some semblance of normalcy," she said. "Our congregations need the stability of knowing that there is a head pastor in place."

That is a cop out. It is not going to happen unless they elect an evangelical like Worley, but the odds of that are slim to none. You only get one crack of the whip, and the next "Chosen One" will be a moderate man (or woman) of all shades of opinion.


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