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Church of England Moves towards Formal Split * GAFCON Chairman says ACNA Prevented Nth. America from being lost * Uganda Primate nearly Lynched * CofE's Non Apology * More Sex Abuse at two Episcopal Prep Schools

A leap in the dark? There is much misunderstanding about faith. It is commonly supposed to be a leap in the dark, totally incompatible with reason. This is not so. True faith is never unreasonable, because its object is always trustworthy. When we human beings trust one another, the reasonableness of our trust depends on the relative trustworthiness of the people concerned. But the Bible bears witness of Jesus Christ as absolutely trustworthy. It tells us who he is and what he has done, and the evidence it supplies for his unique person and work is extremely compelling. As we expose ourselves to the biblical witness to this Christ, and as we feel its impact -- profound yet simple, varied yet unanimous -- God creates faith within us. We receive the testimony. We believe. --- John R. W. Stott

"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last" --- Winston Churchill

You can make any vice respectable by promising booty for government schools. It's how the ruling elites managed to get 44 states to hold Powerball lotteries, which fleece the working poor while reducing the incentive to downsize government. --- Robert Knight

"A heresy is a half-truth turned into a whole falsehood"--- G K. Chesterton

Spiritually speaking, I believe that Satan is the ultimate deceptive force and mastermind behind not just the marriage aspect of their [homosexual] agenda, but also behind the entire distortion that somehow managed to turn a dysfunctional human sexual behavior into a "civil rights" cause. --- Dean Bailey

There is no evidence that the secular gatekeepers are even willing to hear a minimalist or revisionist Christian argument, much less an argument based in orthodox Christianity that is not accommodated to the current Zeitgeist. --- Albert Mohler

When we look at the biblical commandment to "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations," the natural outflow of that is the planting of new churches. --- Daniel Im

By David W. Virtue DD
www.virtueonline.org
Sept 2, 2016

And so it has begun in the Church of England.

A group of parishes is preparing what could be the first step towards a formal split in the Church of England over issues such as homosexuality, with the creation of a new "shadow synod" vowing to uphold traditional teaching.

Representatives of almost a dozen congregations in the Home Counties are due to gather in a church hall in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, later this week for the first session of what they say could eventually develop into an alternative Anglican church in England.

Organizers, drawn from the conservative evangelical wing of Anglicanism, say they have no immediate plans to break away - but are setting up the "embryonic" structures that could be used to do so if the established church moves further in what they see as a liberal direction.

The new alliance will be viewed as a "church within a church", but founders have not ruled out full separation if, for example, the Church of England offers blessing-style services for same-sex unions - a move expected to be considered by bishops in the next few months.

I have no doubt whatsoever that the Church of England will follow the lead of TEC and the ACoC. Western Anglicanism is in the grip of the dominant principalities and powers of our age and its submission to the rulers of the darkness of this world has been willing, defiant and full of pride -- or should I say Pride. The outcome is inevitable. I have posted several stories from the UK in today's digest, addressing this issue in depth.

When I asked where was the Anglican Mission in England (AMiE), I was told that the AMiE didn't plan or direct this group, but they may come in to offer oversight if some of the folk decide to leave the C of E. There are many people who feel the same way but have not done anything about it yet, VOL was told.

"Archbishop Justin knows that the 'Rubicon' is the blessings of same sex relationships, so he is, I think, trying to find a way to enable that without all the conservatives leaving, and GAFCON/Global South treating the C of E like TEC."

There are three methods he can use:

a) Facts on the ground - more and more clergy in homosexual marriages, etc., with no discipline from the church (i.e. don't change the church's teaching - just let it change on the ground)

b) Public education - lots of articles and news items promoting revisionism, for example, in Church Times, CEN, Christian Today etc.

c) Keep using carrot and stick for conservatives - if you don't make trouble, we might promote you, but if you do make trouble, no-one will speak to you

We are already there.

*****

Keeping the pressure on the Church of England this week was GAFCON Chairman and Nigerian Primate, Nicholas Okoh, who sent out his August letter praising the ACNA, while at the same time noting the "steep decline" in attendance in The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada.

He ripped a good one when he said, "Without bold action and commitment to the ACNA as a new province... a whole continent would have been lost to orthodox witness within the Anglican Communion." That's telling Welby. Okoh then went on to blast the Church of England for exporting its problems to the rest of the Communion.

"GAFCON recognizes that the Church is not ours. It belongs to Jesus and it is Jesus who builds the Church through his word. We are to be his instruments and not presume to be the architects. Schism happens, as it has in North America, when church leaders take the design into their own hands," You can read his full take in today's digest.

Now I had "warned" VOL readers that when Okoh took over as GAFCON chairman, that a new day had dawned for the Global South. His take-no-prisoners approach makes me personally feel that VOL, which has taken the same approach for many years, has been vindicated. I can die happy.

*****

The Episcopal House of Bishops is meeting in the fall in Detroit, and the main agenda item is something called Human Synergistics. So I looked it up and here is what I found. Human Synergistics is all about managerial approaches, behavioral styles, and organizational skills and how to identify strengths and development opportunities, pinpoint barriers to successful performance etc.

In TEC's case it is how not to hire a besotted women bishop or ordain more trannie priests, or how not to hire the wrong people at 815 the church's national headquarters to run the church. Once achieved, throw the Jesus Movement into the mix and stir vigorously with a spoonful of white privilege bashing and anti-racism training, and out will pop invigorated bishops ready to lead the church into a glorious future.

The illustrious HOB will not, apparently, discuss the overwhelming decline going on in TEC, the coming loss of 2000 priests over the next 6 years, closing parishes and the fact that nearly 50% of all parishes now can't afford a full time priest. Not important enough apparently. Above all, no mention of the gospel of God's grace to save sinners (there actually might still be a few left in the HOB). No, it is all about church management engineering. One wonders what goes on in the minds of bishops like Dan Martins (Springfield) -- an Anglo-Catholic and Bill Love (Albany) an evangelical catholic, as they listen to this twaddle at a cost of about $2,000 to attend this useless gabfest.

One former TEC bishop wrote to VOL and said this; "[It] looks like the same old, self-destructive stuff, David. You can't talk about the Gospel if you don't believe Jesus is Lord and Scripture is authoritative!" Nope, you can't.

*****

The Anglican Church of Canada would like you to believe that it has more important things on its mind than sex; homosexual sex, in particular.

David of Samizdat writes; "In Canada, around 0.12% of the population are same-sex couples in a civil marriage. Of those, the number pining for a liturgical Anglican seal of approval on their matrimonial state would be even smaller, to the extent that they would represent an extremely small portion of the Canadian population. So the ACoC should have more important things on its mind.

But it doesn't. Here is the headline of the front page of the Diocese of Niagara's newspaper:

EQUAL MARRIAGE COMING IMMEDIATELY TO NIAGARA

The little idiot bishop who runs this diocese has run most orthodox Anglicans out of the diocese and is attempting to sell properties he took back from them to developers to fill his coffers.

*****

Nigerian Anglican Archbishop Nicholas Okoh was in the US recently and VOL obtained an interview with his North American lead bishop, Julian Dobbs. His primary message was that there be 'no compromise' with either Archbishop Welby or North American Primates Michael curry or Fred Hiltz.

In New York City, the Archbishop and his team worshipped at Christ Church, NYC, a CANA East congregation under the leadership of the Rev. Keith Paulus. This congregation meets in the city on the Upper East Side, and Archbishop Okoh experienced the vitality of this inner city Anglican congregation which impacts the life of New York City with the gospel.

Okoh did not meet with PB Michael Curry, who is just down the road.

When VOL asked if Archbishop Okoh held out any hope of reconciliation between the Episcopal Church and the Global South, he replied, that the only way for there to be any reconciliation is through genuine repentance, and for the Episcopal Church to return to the faith once for all entrusted to the saints.

"This is a church that remains faithful to the Bible, no matter what the cost; a church that is active in discipleship and evangelism on the local, national and global level and a church (that) influences society, serving the poor and needy, while at the same time influencing leadership with gospel principles through which people will come to know Christ personally in their lives. The Anglican Communion has been used by God in the past and it can be used by God again if she remains faithful to Christ and the word of God written."

*****

Just to remind you of how perilous it can be to be a Christian in Africa, consider what nearly happened in Mukono, Uganda, this week when the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, the Most Rev. Stanley Ntagali and 38 of his bishops, were nearly lynched by a mob while touring a disputed piece of land in Mukono District.

The group that included Uganda Christian University Vice Chancellor, Dr. John Ssenyonyi, had gone to visit a one square mile piece of land that belongs to the Church of Uganda. The land in question is currently being developed by Uganda Christian University, an institution of the church.

The tour nearly ended when a group of people who were meeting at a nearby bar approached the bishops, hurling insults at the priests while threatening to kill them. The mob brought match boxes and dry grass and tried to set the university's bus, which had transported the bishops to the site, on fire. They were saved in the nick of time.

If it's not Boko Haram, then it is someone else ready to take out our African Anglican brothers and sisters. Now think about that as you read the daily whine by Episcopal sodomites looking for acceptance for their reprehensible behavior that has only divided the Anglican Communion.

*****

The Church of England has mastered the art of the non-apology, says Anglican columnist Jules Gomes.

"When is an apology not an apology? An apology is not an apology when a Church of England bishop offers it to a victim of sexual abuse on a silver platter of spin as a tactical cop-out while shedding crocodile tears and mumbling 'Awfully sorry, old chap!' in the mode of a Bertie Wooster facing a snappy Gussie Fink-Nottle.

"The C of E has been caught with its pants down in yet another monumental cock-up with the embarrassing revelation of how bishops were instructed only to give partial apologies--if at all--to victims of sexual abuse to avoid being sued. A survivor of child sexual abuse has issued a damning indictment of the C of E's hierarchy, naming and shaming it for washing its hands 'like Pontius Pilate'.

"The old-fashioned practice of a heartfelt apology, deeply rooted in the Christian theology of repentance and reconciliation, has now been turned into an episcopal Punch and Judy show with lawyers, bureaucrats and managers on fat cat salaries pulling the strings while their purple-clad puppets dance to their dirges, desperately clutching at mitre and crosier." You can read Dr. Gomes' excellent take on this in today's digest.

*****

Vicars in England have been warned not to wear dog collars in public for fear of Islamist attack, writes Archbishop Cranmer at his blog.

Vicars don't need to say, "Hello, I'm the vicar." Their dog collars make voiceless introduction: they are an emblem of office; an indication of vocation and service. They are woven into the Christian fabric of our public life, as commonplace as dog-walkers and chocolate-box village churches. So to read that vicars are being advised not to wear a dog collar in public because it makes them an easy target for Islamists is disheartening, to say the least.

The Mirror reports that "knifemen will target Western church for their next attack", and about half-way down we read:

A vicar, who declined to be named, told Mirror Online they have been warned by church diocese officials not to wear their dog collars in public because it marks them out as a potential target. He claimed they have also been warned to avoid being in churches on their own.

We are not told which officials in which diocese have issued this warning, but it is advice which needs to be ignored. To heed such guidance is to surrender to fanatical Islamists; to conceal one's Christian faith out of fear of the consequences; to hide one's light under a bushel in order not to provoke some hot-headed Muslim extremist to combat.

Easy for someone to say who's not in danger of being a target, you may say. But what have we become if we relinquish the vestments of our national faith out of fear of the adherents of another religion? What is ceded? Who is appeased? Where is the victor and who is the vanquished?

It is wise and helpful for security experts to issue 'Counter Terrorism Advice for Churches'. But vicars don't work 9.00-5.00: it's a 24/7 job (maybe Mondays off, if you're lucky). They are supposed to be identifiable when they are not in church, because they are always at work and forever on duty (even when they're not). By all means install CCTV and "be alert for attackers, who are likely to be armed with knives", but, for God's sake, don't let the Islamic State force you to conceal the marks of your Christian faith. No, you must make every effort to preach truth, in season and out; you must symbolize the blessings of salvation when you can; you should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints (Jude 1:3). Defend the truth vigorously. Walk by faith continuously. Guard the treasure. Be bold for Christ.

The diocese which advises otherwise, has already surrendered.

*****

A UK-based children's charity with links to the Church of England reports that more than a quarter of a million girls in Britain are unhappy with their lives and appearance. The study, by the Children's Society, reports that "huge numbers [of girls are] struggling with the way they look." The finding is reported in the latest edition of the Good Childhood Report -- a series of studies into children's lives based on surveys of thousands of young people.

*****

For the first time in modern history, Europe's deaths have exceeded births with the continent in perfect health, free of the diseases and wars that reduced numbers catastrophically during ancient and medieval times.

But that's not all, reports Guilio Meotti, in an article published by the Manhattan-based, conservative-minded Gatestone Institute. Although "during 2015, 5.1 million babies were born in the EU, while 5.2 million persons died, the overall "European population increased overall from 508.3 million to 510.1 million."

As the article's title, "Europe: The Substitution of a Population," foretells, mass immigration from different cultures in Africa and the Middle East accounts for the growth. Meotti prophecies nothing less than the death of Europe.

"Europe's suicidal birth rate, coupled with migrants who multiply faster, will transform European culture. The declining fertility rate of native Europeans coincides, in fact, with the institutionalization of Islam in Europe and the 're-Islamization' of its Muslims."

European leaders, almost all secularists, don't seem to care, Meotti observes. They have already let the civilization that led humanity from pagan darkness fall back into something worse: "a frivolous libertarianism, an ideology under the guise of freedom that wants to deconstruct all the ties that bind man to his family, his parentage, his work, his history, his religion, his language, his nation, his freedom."

*****

The entire 'LGBT' narrative just crumbled, as VOL reported on last week. Here is what Matt Barber of Townhall.Com wrote: If your daughter, sister, mother or friend "identified" as a fat person trapped in a perilously emaciated body -- if she truly believed she was obese, but, in reality, suffered from anorexia -- would you affirm her "fatness" and get her liposuction, or would you go to the ends of the earth to help her bring her subjective (and mistaken) identity into alignment with objective reality? When someone is engaged in demonstrably self-destructive behavior, it is not loving, but hateful, to encourage persistence.

It was, ironically, lesbian activist and writer Dorothy Allison who once wrote, "Things come apart so easily when they have been held together with lies." In validation of this truism, a series of new peer-reviewed studies have just been released that serve to utterly debunk and deconstruct key "progressive" homosexual-activist talking points.

This study, conducted by world renowned Johns Hopkins University scientists, Dr. Lawrence S. Mayer and Dr. Paul R. McHugh, is a meta-analysis of data from over 200 peer-reviewed (and left-leaning) studies regarding "sexual orientation" and "gender identity." It was published in the fall 2016 edition of The New Atlantis journal, and is, far and away, the most objective, exhaustive and comprehensive study on the topic to date.

The research established, among other things:

"The understanding of sexual orientation as an innate, biologically fixed property of human beings -- the idea that people are 'born that way' -- is not supported by scientific evidence."

"Sexual orientation" in adolescents is "fluid over the life course for some people, with one study estimating that as many as 80 percent of male adolescents who report same-sex attractions no longer do so as adults."

"Compared to heterosexuals, non-heterosexuals are about two to three times as likely to have experienced childhood sexual abuse."

"Gay"-identified people are "at an elevated risk for a variety of adverse health and mental health outcomes."

"Gay"-identified people experience "nearly 2.5 times the risk of suicide."

"The hypothesis that gender identity is an innate, fixed property of human beings that is independent of biological sex -- that a person might be 'a man trapped in a woman's body' or 'a woman trapped in a man's body' -- is not supported by scientific evidence."

So the question must be asked, where are the screams of outrage from the homosexual community? Why are episcopal bishops and clergy, who have been endorsing the whole pansexual agenda for more than 30 years, suddenly COMPLETELY SILENT. Where is the push back? When the HOB meets next month in Detroit, will somebody, anybody, have the guts to stand up and say 'the emperor (V. Gene Robinson) has no clothes', that his whole sexual identity, experimentation, 'generous orthodoxy' pitch was all a huge hoax and a lie, that TEC was fooled into believing that sodomy was good and right in the eyes of God when clearly it was not! Is there not one bishop, one clergyman, who bought into the whole pansexual wasteland, prepared to stand up and say "I was wrong?" We wait with bated breath.

*****

Adding more fuel to the lieUniversity of Texas sociologist, Mark Regnerus, whose 2012 "New Family Structures Study," showed different outcomes in the lives of children raised by a parent who has same-sex relationships and those raised by their married, biological parents [IBFs] revealed on criminal outcomes, the children of GFs [gay fathers] showed the greatest propensity to be involved in crime. They were, on average, more frequently arrested and pled guilty to more non-minor offenses than the young-adult children in any other category. The children of LMs [lesbian mothers] reported the second highest frequency of involvement in crimes and arrests, and, in both categories, the young-adult children of intact biological families reported the lowest frequency of involvement in crimes or arrests.

The children raised in lesbian mother households were more often sexually victimized, rather than less, as often claimed: In percentages, 31% of LMs said they had been forced to have sex, compared with 25% of GFs and 8% of IBFs. These results are generally consistent with research on heterosexual families. For instance, a recent federal report showed that children in heterosexual families are least likely to be sexually, physically, or emotionally abused in an intact, biological, married family. So why is Regnerus so hated for his findings? Because such findings as these, however accurate, are simply not culturally acceptable. It is also another nail in the coffin of pansexuality, as the recent findings of two academics, one of whom is the distinguished Professor and psychiatrist, Paul McHugh.

*****

The ongoing saga of sexual abuse at St. Paul's, a prep school in Concord, NH, took another twist this week when the abused girl in question, "Miss X", revealed her name. VOL writer, Mary Ann Mueller, followed up on the story broken by The TODAY Show and how "Miss X" came forward with her parents and older sister to publicly identify herself as the protected victim of the St. Paul's School Senior Salute sex scandal.

Two years ago, Miss Prout, then a fresh-faced 15-year-old freshman, went on a Friday night date in late May with graduating senior, Owen Labrie. Before the evening was over, Miss Prout was sexually assaulted by the older prep school student. This led to Labrie being arrested following his June 1, 2014, graduation and charged with sexual assault. In August, 2015, he went to trial to defend himself, and the jury found guilty of three counts of misdemeanor Sexual Assault, one misdemeanor count of Endangering the Welfare of a Child and one felony count of Prohibited Use of Computer Equipment. You can read the full story in today's digest.

The Boston Globe also reported this week that, after a months-long independent investigation of sexual abuse at St. George's School, a report released Thursday described the elite Rhode Island prep school in the 1970's and 80's as a cauldron of sexual exploitation of students.

Sixty-one alumni gave investigators first-hand accounts of the abuse they say they suffered, with 51 saying the abusers were faculty or staff, and an additional 10 reporting abuse by classmates. We will reveal more news as we get it.

*****

Friends,

We really must have a working budget. VOL urgently needs your financial support to keep the news coming to you. We rely on you, our readers, to keep us going. The vast output of news that we grind out weekly and put into your e-mail does not happen by itself. It depends on a hard-working team of reporters and commentators.
Please help make this possible. You can send a donation to VOL via PAYPAL at the link here: http://www.virtueonline.org/support-vol/

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Thank you for your support.

David

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