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Lambeth Conference Heats Up * Pushback from GFSA and Revisionist TEC Bishops over 1:10 * LA Bishop Accuses Welby of Bait-and-Switch * CofE Cannot define 'Woman' * TEC in Rapid Decline * ACNA Inherits Anglican Chaplains

Lambeth Conference Heats Up * Pushback from GFSA and Revisionist TEC Bishops over 1:10 * LA Bishop Accuses Welby of Bait-and-Switch * CofE Cannot define 'Woman' * TEC in Rapid Decline * ACNA Inherits Anglican Chaplains

Both Law and Gospel need each other, of course, but Law without the Gospel is lifeless legalism, and the Gospel without Law is unbridled licentiousness and hedonism. --- Chuck Collins

When the Christian faith is politicized, churches become repositories not of grace but of grievances, places where tribal identities are reinforced, where fears are nurtured, and where aggression and nastiness are sacralized. --- Peter Wehner

We see that churches that go beyond compassion for self-identified members of the LGBTQIA+ community (which we could all do a better job of) to reject clear biblical teaching on sexual morality can expect a dramatic, long-term, and irreversible membership decline, as well as emptier pews and increasingly uniform liberalism among those who remain. ---John Lomperis, Juicy Ecumenism

"You're churches for God's sake. Quit fighting for social justice. Quit saving the bloody planet. Attend to some souls -- that's what you're supposed to do. That's your holy duty. Do it. Now. Before it's too late. The hour is nigh.' I want to say (after Jesus) 'you should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.'" --- Jordan Peterson

Protestant identity is evaporating before our eyes. Does it matter? It does to me. While there is great diversity among Protestants, being Protestant means holding to the gospel of salvation by grace alone through faith alone and to the Bible as authoritative over extra-biblical traditions. --- Roger E. Olson

Anti-intellectualism and the fullness of the Spirit are mutually incompatible, because the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of truth. --- John R. W. Stott

"Transgenderism is a dangerous lie. Whatever sex you were born, you will be for the rest of your life. No amount of hormone therapy or surgical intervention will alter that reality." --- Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse, President of the Ruth Institute

Now that I come to think of it, maybe the reason the church is not reaching young men is because it's not really reaching me. --- Mark Galli

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
July 22, 2022

THE Archbishop of the Sudan, the Most Rev Justin Badi, has issued a clarion call to the orthodox bishops who will be attending the Lambeth Conference next week and he urged them, "to speak with one voice, united in gospel truth." He further stated that they will be seeking for the Conference "to reaffirm Lambeth I.10 as the official teaching of the Anglican Communion."

Lambeth 1.10 was drawn up and passed by an overwhelming majority of bishops at the Lambeth Conference in 1998, and it "rejects homosexual practice as incompatible with Scripture" and states that they "cannot advise the legitimising or blessing of same-sex unions nor ordaining those involved in same gender unions".

In a video published on the website of the Global South Fellowship of Anglican Churches (GSFA), Lambeth I.10 is the historic resolution about marriage and human sexuality which Anglicans have been fighting about for the past 25 years.
You can see the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XUXWn_wvQkY

With at least six bishops attending the Conference this summer who are themselves living in same-sex marriages, such a call is likely to ruffle a few feathers amongst those organizing the agenda for the conference.

It already has.

This week the homosexual Bishop of Maine Thomas Brown will attend, but his spouse Thomas Mousin, who was 'expressly disinvited' will also come and be allowed to attend worship and the other public events, but not the spouses' events. Mousin said he is going to have conversation and a cuppa with anyone who will listen to his aggrieved soul about why his distinctly unbiblical "marriage" is now suddenly acceptable in the sight of the Lord.

But then things got really heated up when the Bishop of Los Angeles John Harvey wrote, "You think it's hot in London this week? Wait until next week in Canterbury... it's evidently not going to be quite the opportunity for fellowship, listening, learning, and healing planners have led us to expect."

He went on to accuse the Archbishop of Canterbury of "bait-and-switch" tactics. "The word is spreading quickly that the Kumbaya Lambeth is actually a bait-and-switch Lambeth, with moderate and progressive Anglicans and Episcopalians about to arrive in Canterbury as credulous props for what is likely to be a majority vote against marriage equity."

Bishop Susan Brown Snook of the Diocese of San Diego weighed in, saying she spotted the news buried in the 58-page document, "Lambeth Calls," written by male bishops and emailed this week. "I guess they're using electronic affirmation devices Lambeth's notorious, communion-rivening statement in 1998, known as Lambeth I.10, that biblical marriage can only be between a man and a woman. If we don't vote yes, we can vote that a question needs more discernment. As of now, we won't be able to stand up decisively for people's God-given human rights and vote no."

Clearly all the talk about "gracious reconciliation" and "relationship-building", is just that...talk.

You can read more here: https://virtueonline.org/los-angeles-bishops-blog-bait-and-switch-lambeth-conference

The Archbishop of Canterbury has already announced his decision that there will be no resolutions this year - instead there will be a number of thematic 'Calls' for global discussion. This begs the question how much more discussion is needed after the Windsor Report and a Covenant.

"As you prepare your hearts and minds for this gathering, I pray that we all reflect on the draft Call on Anglican Identity, which states that Anglicans "belong to a tradition that seeks faithfulness to God in richly diverse cultures, distinct human experiences, and deep disagreements." That call also states: "The Anglican Communion is a gift from God. Governed by Scripture, affirming the ancient creeds, sacramentally centered, and episcopally led -- Anglicans seek to be faithful to God in their agreement and in their disagreements."

Welby did note that those things on which we deeply disagree will bring us all to an even deeper sense of what unites us: the love of Jesus Christ and his calling to serve God's world. High-sounding words indeed. But the latest blasts by homosexual TEC bishops signify that love is not all love.

Welby is going to have to contend with Sudanese Archbishop Badi, who describes the GSFA as part of the "holy remnant that God has preserved" in the Anglican Communion. All of that undermines the kumbaya theology of Welby, over estimating his own significance.

Of the 1,000 bishops in the Anglican Communion who have been invited to the Lambeth Conference, approximately half serve in the GSFA churches. Between them, they represent more than 75 per cent of Anglicans worldwide.

Their united voice might just be too loud for the Archbishop of Canterbury to ignore. Time will tell.


AS THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND heads Gadarene-like over the cliff on the acceptability of homosexual behavior and homosexual marriage, it is now stumbling over whether it can define what a 'woman' is.

There are complexities associated with gender identity according to senior bishop Robert Innes, who admitted that the CofE admits it doesn't have an "official definition" of woman. The stance comes despite Anglicanism still opposing same-sex weddings. One campaigner said it was 'shocking' the church had given up the definition.

If you are picking yourself up off the floor, imagine how this sounds to the ears of Global South Anglican bishops, who are wary enough of Welby and his growing acceptance of sodomy. Now the CofE -- the Mother Church -- can't define what a woman is!

News personality Calvin Robinson argued that the definition should not be difficult: "The definition of 'woman' is not a complex moral problem," he said. "It is a scientific and biblical truth. How can you trust someone who cannot speak the truth about such basic facts?"

Mr. Robinson, who is evangelical and black, got denied ordination in the Church of England. He is clearly a victim of the church's ecclesiastical correctness.

You can read two pieces on this here: https://virtueonline.org/there-are-complexities-associated-gender-identity-church-england-admits-it-doesnt-have-definition and Mary Ann Mueller's excellent analysis here: https://virtueonline.org/what-woman-church-england-doesnt-know-bible-does


LAMBETH 1:10 SET TO BECOME A STICKY WICKET AT LAMBETH 2022. Six queer bishops are willing to derail Lambeth.

Mary Ann Mueller reports that two headlines on the same story about the upcoming Lambeth Conference and Lambeth I.10 reveal the political, if not spiritual, divide within the ecclesial and secular media.

EPISCOPAL JOURNAL: Global South bishops gear up for push against marriage equality at upcoming Lambeth Conference

THE CHURCH TIMES: Global South to push for a reaffirmation of Lambeth I.10, says Archbishop of South Sudan

You can read her analysis here: https://virtueonline.org/lambeth-110-set-become-sticky-wicket-lambeth-2022


In a VOL exclusive, the Church of Nigeria released Anglican chaplains to the Anglican Church in North America. The Jurisdiction of the Armed Forces and Chaplaincy (JAFC), also known as the Anglican Chaplains, has been canonically transferred from the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) to the ACNA.

In 2012, The Convocation of Anglicans in North America (CANA) created four dioceses, the JAFC being one of the four. Originally, the JAFC was to be transferred to the ACNA. But for many reasons, that transfer was never completed in 2014.

Bishop Derek Jones, Bishop of the Armed Forces and Chaplaincy, couldn't participate in the 2019 agreement between the ACNA and the CoN that called for the former CANA dioceses to be either fully ACNA or CoN. The JAFC was structured in such a way that it needed to remain connected to both provinces. Consequently, the JAFC remained as a "dual jurisdiction" canonically resident in the CoN while fully functioning within the structure, and to the benefit and ministry of the ACNA until this latest agreement. You can read more here: https://virtueonline.org/church-nigeria-releases-anglican-chaplains-acna


THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH'S GENERAL CONVENTION went out with a whimper, with Mary Ann Mueller asking, what if they held a General Convention and nobody came?

COVID had decimated the Convention this year and threw it into chaos.

The sad reality, she writes, is that the 80th Episcopal General Convention did not generate the attention-grabbing headlines it had in the past.

Other than the expected coverage from the Episcopal News Service and The Living Church Foundation, Convention was largely ignored by other church-based press and the secular media. Basically, there's nothing to see there.

The current presiding bishop, Michael Curry, is black; the previous presiding bishop, Katherine Jefferts Schori, is a woman, so all color barriers and stained-glass ceilings have been breached. The fact that the House of Deputies elected a Latino, Julia Ayala Harris, for its new president and an indigenous woman from the Shackan Indian Band, Rachel Taber-Hamilton, as vice president generated no attention-grabbing headlines. The news was just taking it in stride, nothing new to see there.

The Episcopal Church is so tied to the culture, that the House of Bishops will soon be home to seven gay and lesbian bishops and bishopettes, including: Thomas Brown (X Maine); Bonnie Perry (XI Michigan); Mary Glasspool (New York-assisting); Deon Johnson (XI Missouri); Thomas Shaw (XV Massachusetts-RIP); Vicky Gene Robinson (IX New Hampshire-retired); and soon Jeffrey Mello (XVI Connecticut-elect).

However, there are several transgender priests and priestesses within the Episcopal ranks, including: Gwen Fry, Cameron Partridge, Carla Robinson, Rowan Larson, and Christopher Fike. (Carolyn Woodall is a vocational deacon.) None of whom have made it into the House of Bishops -- as of yet. When that happens, headlines will be generated -- at least temporarily.

Most of the big controversial national issues have been settled -- same-sex marriage is the law of the land, Roe v Wade has been overturned, and Bishop William Love (IX Albany) has been drummed out of The Episcopal Church for his biblically based conservative stances.

Even the 'No Restriction' on abortion failed to ignite the crowds. General Convention reasserted denominational support for legal abortion at any stage of pregnancy, but also defeated legislation condemning pregnancy resource centers. Abortion even influenced debate about a call for reconsideration of holding the 81st General Convention in Louisville, Kentucky, where the state is widely expected to stop most abortions in the coming days.

The 80th Episcopal General Convention only generated one small headline and that was from The Christian Post: "Episcopal Church rejects proposal to relocate 2024 General Convention over abortion ban."

For a complete listing of VOL's stories on the 80th General Convention: https://virtueonline.org/80th-general-convention-episcopal-church


NEW NUMBERS OUT ON TEC reveals a church in rapid decline. Ryan P. Burge writing for the Religion in Public blog says that COVID-19 only accelerated the decline of The Episcopal Church.

He writes: "I now have data from 2020 and my conclusion hasn't changed. The Episcopal Church is in serious trouble. Some of it may be pandemic related, but some of it is clearly not. The end is coming fairly rapidly for the TEC as it exists today.

"In 2009, about 725,000 Episcopalians were classified as weekly attenders. That has declined every single year since then, usually by two or three percentage points. By 2016, the number of regular attending Episcopalians had dropped to about 600,000. Before the pandemic hit, regular attendance had leveled off around 550,000. But, then COVID-19 shut down churches all across the United States. It hit TEC hard. Average attendance dropped by about sixty thousand between 2019 and 2020 -- a dip of nearly twelve percent in a single year. Or said another way, church attendance in The Episcopal Church dropped by a third between 2009 and 2020."

"Alongside a decline in attendance, there was also a noticeable reduction in "plate and pledge" totals between 2019 and 2020. It's important to note that it's fairly modest at about sixty million dollars (or 4.4%). The amount of money in the plate and pledge totals was essentially the same in 2014 as it was in 2020. But that $1.3 billion in 2014, adjusted for inflation, would be about $1.42 billion today. Thus, donations are not keeping pace and are noticeably slowing down. You can read his full report here: https://virtueonline.org/covid-19-only-accelerated-decline-episcopal-church


TORONTO - A new tranche of census data shows the typical Canadian family is diverging further from the nuclear structure that was once the norm, with more couples living in common-law partnerships and without children.

Statistics Canada released results recently from the 2021 national census that show 23 per cent of couples who live together are unmarried -- the highest percentage of any G7 nation. This is clearly a sign of the decreasing influence of Christianity in Canada. Sadly, it is unlikely to hear a clear unalloyed gospel message from the Anglican Church of Canada that will make heterosexual marriage good news.

A colleague reports that in the Diocese of Huron they are closing churches on average one a week. An Anglican Church near London, Ontario has closed. In the past few years at least ten Anglican churches have closed in London, with even more closing in the Diocese of Huron.



THE GREAT QUEST: An invitation to an Examined Life and a Sure Path to Meaning by Os Guinness. IVP. 122pp. $16.00 Available at IVP https://www.ivpress.com/the-great-quest

If you have read C.S Lewis's Mere Christianity, John Stott's Basic Christianity or G.K. Chesterton's Orthodoxy, then you will want to read Os Guinness latest book, The Great Quest, an invitation to an Examined Life and a Sure Path to Meaning.

Why? The first three writers were men of their times - The Twentieth Century. Guinness updates the great and unending quest for truth in the fast-changing world of the Twenty-First Century, and he does so in this gentle, urgent, but unyielding call to look at life's meaning, purpose and man's final destination.

He writes: "The truth is that the urgent need of our times is a fresh seriousness about human existence and a renewed openness to ultimate questions." I have reviewed the book here: https://virtueonline.org/great-quest-invitation-examined-life-and-sure-path-meaning

America in Danger, Left and Right: Biblical Analysis, Actions, and Intercessions for the Current Crisis by William L De Arteaga

This work examines the perilous state America now finds itself in. The origins of the crisis are twofold. One is the captivation of American universities, colleges and major corporations by the radical Left - Marxist or post-Modern radicals. And the other is the destruction of the Republican Party as a party of moderation to become a Trump dominated libertarian extremism. The solution of the crises is more spiritual than political. This includes spiritual warfare of focused intercessory prayers and evangelistic efforts at American universities and colleges. This includes the new ministry, based on Acts 13:9-12 called command disablement. Countering the extremism on the Right also demands major intercessory prayers, blended with patience, and with Christians willing to communicate with their political opposites. You can buy the book here:



I invite readers to take a look at some of the major culture war stories that affect Christians across the globe.

Mocked, reviled and pelted with eggs -- a Christian on the Pride front line.

An Interview with Archdeacon Hassan John, Research Director for the Primate of Nigeria on the killing of Christians in Nigeria.


Christians have abortions, too. https://virtueonline.org/christians-have-abortions-too

Technology is being weaponized to persecute religious minorities.

KNEELING BEFORE THE ALTAR OF RAINBOW COLORS. The acceptance of transgenderism is being forced upon society.



For an excellent layman-friendly explanation of the Cosmological Argument for the existence of God, see the following video:


Next week I head to Canterbury and the Lambeth Conference. I value your prayers as I head across the pond. My team will be working overtime to get the stories out to you in a timely manner. VOL will be one of a very small handful of orthodox media voices covering this Decennial event.

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