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ECUSA must be disciplined...faithful remnant must hold on...AAC...CofE blasted

“Rather than encouraging honesty, charity, clarity and harmony within the American church and within the larger Communion, the leadership of ECUSA has resolutely pursued a course of response to evangelical outrage over Robinson’s consecration (and other related matters) that has furthered obscurantist denial, malicious accusation, ecclesial confusion, and discord – something we might have been spared had disengagement from the Communion by these leaders been pursued vigorously and openly from the start.” Anglican Communion Institute statement, April 2004.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

COLORADO SPRINGS--It was a kairos moment in the life of the Episcopal Church this week when several hundred Episcopalians gathered in the Adams Mark hotel to actively penetrate the fog of the Episcopal Church’s revisionist hegemony.

A former Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. George Carey, along with a bevy of scholars and churchmen representing some of the best minds in the Anglican Communion, met to dissemble the latest spin coming out of western Anglicanism.

Meeting under the auspices of the Anglican Communion Institute, the conference pulled no punches with its bold banner declaration: “The Future of Western Anglicanism – History and Hope.”

In his opening remarks the Rev. Dr. Christopher Seitz, an American born theologian, now teaching at St. Andrew’s University in Edinburgh, said that the Anglican Communion, and the US Episcopal Church was at a crisis point “that we are all trying to adjust to.”

“The situation is sufficiently messy, and unstable, and changing from moment to moment, that if one were to produce a tidy paper in preparation for this event, it would likely be dated by the time we assembled. Such is the volatile, confusing, indeed rather frightening, reality we now find ourselves in as Anglican Christians,” he said.

Seitz said the Lambeth Commission, was an epicenter, clearing house, and dumping ground for the church’s present problems and confusions. “On the one hand, its timeliness as a meeting is obvious and essential, whatever one’s hopes for its outcomes or effectiveness. On the other hand, it serves the purpose of changing the subject if but for a brief season.”

Seitz said it was by no means clear that the now-annual Primates Meeting would [ever] find themselves able to sit down and discuss, much less break bread or celebrate The Lord’s Supper, with Frank Griswold or Michael Peers of Canada.

‘The last emergency meeting in October led to an appeal for forbearance which, before the ink was dry, was ignored in the name of protecting the human rights and decision processes of a small diocese in a small American church, in a state whose motto is ’live free or die.’ Live free they did indeed. In the aftermath of that decision have come wave after wave of reaction and counter-reaction, so that the work of the Commission is super-heated beyond anyone’s imagining.”

AMONG CONFERENCE PARTICIPANTS were panelists working directly with the Commission and who are in contact with the Primates of the Global South, who met recently in Nairobi; or with Canterbury itself. Other input to the Commission is coming from England and elsewhere.

The Anglican Communion Institute (ACI) completed its own submission which VIRTUOSITY has posted in today’s digest.

The ACI leaders were convinced of many truths in their deliberations, but one single over arching truth exercised their minds the most - the discipline of the Presiding Bishop of ECUSA and of consenters to the consecration of Canon Robinson, as well as resolutions associated with same-sex blessings. Their main conviction was that unless such discipline was exercised against Griswold and 62 revisionist bishops, the Communion could not survive.

What they resolved was that the Episcopal Church should separate itself from faithful orthodox Episcopalians who wish to uphold ‘the faith once delivered’ and who wanted to be in sync with the vast majority of Anglicans worldwide, and they should declare themselves a national, autonomous denomination with its own brand of religious faith lead by Griswold and those revisionist bishops who wish to join him.

This, they argued, was the only honest way forward. They could take all the revisionist resolutions of the last half dozen General Conventions and practice them to their heart’s content.

Issues of property, etc. could be resolved “graciously,” (a much favored word of Griswold), or the courts could decide. But at the end of the day, you would have one revisionist Episcopal Church, unaffiliated with the worldwide Anglican Communion, but perhaps in harmony with the majority of Anglicans in the Anglican Church in Canada, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. The faithful remnant would be THE Episcopal Church with full ties to the Anglican Communion.

YOU CAN READ ALL THE STORIES IN TODAY’S DIGEST that flowed from this conference. Lord George Carey the former Archbishop of Canterbury had some harsh things to say about the Episcopal Church as did Dr. George Sumner, Canon Bill Atwood and others. This conference was truly a mixture of history and hope with much sober reflection on the reality that faces us as a Communion and the Episcopal Church.

On a personal note I would like to say that I have rarely met such a group of men and women that embodied scholarly heads and pastoral hearts. Among them were Dr. Ashley Null, Dr. Edith Humphrey, Dr. Robert Prichard, Dr. Jeremy Begbie, Dr. Peter Walker, Dr. Ephraim Radner, Bishop John Karanja, Canon Bill Atwood and Dr. George Sumner. This writer was privileged to address a banquet gathering. Many of the speakers like Dr. Radner are scholars in pastoral ministries because their orthodox views are not welcome in liberal ECUSA seminaries. They labor uncomplainingly in the Episcopal vineyard, reviled by their revisionist bishops, but faithful to their Lord.

Please feel free to post these stories far and wide as they deserve wide reception and reading.

IN OTHER NEWS, the American Anglican Council has come out with a strong statement in support of the recent meeting of CAPA (African) Primates meeting in Nairobi. They like the African bishops chastise ECUSA for the moral positions it has taken. You can read their statement. Canon David Anderson, AAC’s president was at the ACI meeting in Colorado Springs, indicating that the realignment presently under way will embrace all those who stand against the revisionist Episcopal Moloch.

THE DIOCESE OF LOUISIANA HELD THE LINE on sexuality issues at its recent convention. Following their bishop’s lead they said no to same-sex blessings and that celibacy for single persons or fidelity in marriage would be the standard. There were a number of resolutions affirming the church’s traditional teaching on human sexuality lead by orthodox Bishop Charles E. Jenkins. But even traditional dioceses are feeling the financial pinch. The diocese passed a budget of $1.4 million but the diocese will only send $78,000 to the national church, 66 percent less than last year.

IN ENGLAND the Evangelical backlash over the appointment of Dr. Jeffrey John the homoerotic dean of St. Alban’s has aroused the wrath of the Church of England’s evangelicals. They have called for an urgent meeting with Tony Blair to express their fury at the appointment of the homosexual cleric Dr Jeffrey John as Dean of St Albans. No sooner did he get the job than Dr John pressed for the blessing of same-sex unions. In the latest word from England, the Evangelicals are threatening to withhold funds and possibly bankrupt the C of E. This is a tactic that North American Evangelical and Anglo-Catholic Episcopalians are doing in ECUSA. It’s a tactic that is worthy of emulating apparently.

The liberals (in England) and the revisionists (in the US) are canonical fundamentalists and literalists when it comes to money. You can watch the presentments and threats start to really fly when dioceses start to mandate assessments and orthodox parishes start to balk. Hell hath no fury like a revisionist bishop scorned.

KEEPING THEM IN THE DARK. A Virtuosity reader recently sent the following note. It is typical of what the revisionists are actively doing to keep people blind, deaf and dumb to its tactics.

“While reading David Thorman's recent letter to Virtuosity, I was intrigued by his comment with regard to the events of General Convention last year.

“I too knew absolutely nothing about the issues to be acted upon at General Convention, and this is why:

“At my former parish, not one of the deanery members and delegates to diocesan convention ever bothered to tell the congregation about the issues coming before the August General Convention. They no doubt supposed that we would read about it in Episcopal Life or our diocesan paper. They evidently forgot that one of their responsibilities as representatives of their parish was to keep their fellow parishioners informed!

So it is no wonder that I was surprised and taken off-guard, and consequently, I must assume that this same sort of thing happened in many other parishes. I therefore am not at all surprised that the reaction to the events at General Convention, followed by the "consecration" of Gene Robinson was as widespread and as negative as it was!”

PLEASE NOTE A CHANGE OF WEB ADDRESS FOR THE NETWORK (NADCP). It was http://www.anglicancommuniondioceses.org it is now http://www.anglicancommunionnetwork.org.

I AM POSTING a number of stories for your enlightenment and education. Please feel free to forward them to your friends. With the INTERNET nobody needs to stay in the dark anymore. Tell your friends to join by going to the website: www.virtuosityonline.org and joining up, or you can simply read the stories at the website.

PLEASE CONSIDER SUPPORTING VIRTUOSITY. New stories are posted daily to the website. If you want to stay completely current then go to www.virtuosityonline.org and scan through the categories that interest you. The dates will show how current the story is.

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All blessings,

David W. Virtue DD

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