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Theology, History & Science
January 16 2020 By virtueonline Thoughts on the New Anglican Reformation -- Part 7

As sad as this picture is to those who love the Lord Jesus and have been raised to true faith in the Anglican community, it is not the first time the faithful have had to face such a day. The scriptures tell of this repeatedly, both in the time of the Old Covenant and the New. And it is most certainly not the first time that it has happened to the Church in England.

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January 08 2020 By virtueonline Episcopalians Launch Another 'Earth & Altar'

I don't have anything substantial to add to what I wrote then -- although I do now suspect that the existence of two identically named, broadly Anglican, and visually similar sites will lead to some significant confusion. And I have become, I must say, increasingly perplexed by their branding decisions the more I think about it.

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My early life was shaped by an Anglo Catholic sensibility, and my ministry had been deeply affected by both the Evangelical Resurgence taking place in England in the middle of the Twentieth Century, and the Charismatic Renewal. I was fortunate to be working as a Curate in an English parish that was undergoing significant renewal, but my own prayers were causing me to focus more and more on that portion of the English population that was outside the established church's ministry.

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When and how the next steps were taken to order that church, we do not know. When did the full ordering of the ministry take place, with deacons, presbyters, and bishops? When did they have the majority of (if not the full) New Testament? When did they first build purpose made buildings for worship? When were they first made aware of the wider Christian world, and their calling to be in unity with all true followers of Jesus?

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December 17 2019 By virtueonline Thoughts on the New Anglican Reformation

Some among us seem to think nothing needs replacing, so long as the "rotten leaders" are replaced. Some think old scores from previous disagreements need to be settled, then all will be alright. Others have long nurtured hopes for minor improvements on the ages. "Tuck here, let out there." There are few who seem to see the situation as requiring dramatic reformation. I am one.

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December 02 2019 By virtueonline THOUGHTS ON THE NEW ANGLICAN REFORMATION --- Part 4

But it is the last of these three promises that I believe could offer a key to the hope for a unifying reformation among us, if the Lord Christ will allow us that grace. I believe it could offer a new place for all faithful Anglicans to stand together in one body. Let us revisit the details of that third promise.

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November 21 2019 By virtueonline Diana Butler Bass vs Council of Nicaea

For Bass, this discrediting of Nicaea "was like a dagger through the heart." She understood Clark's point: "the business of the Holy Spirit writing the creed, miraculously guiding the church to particular words explaining Christ, was better understood in terms of political consolidation of imperial power."

So Nicaea "wasn't a miracle" but "about people and power and privilege. About controlling outcomes and getting your way. About sin and writing history so that you are the hero."

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November 11 2019 By virtueonline THOUGHTS ON THE NEW ANGLICAN REFORMATION -- Part 3

Some years ago, I was teaching young ordinands in one of the Diocese of South East Asia when the bishop asked to see me in private. After courteous preliminaries he asked me: "What is your definition of a New Anglican?" He was referencing the name of the missionary society that I had then been leading for two decades, the New Anglican Missionary Society (NAMS), but he was assuming the phrase "New Anglican" meant a different kind of Anglican.

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November 09 2019 By virtueonline Finding Truth Amid Tension

More a mindset than a set of doctrines

But are there common features of a fundamentalist mindset to be found in these varied expressions? Consider these eight tell-tale signs:

First, fundamentalists of all stripes tend to reflect black and white thinking. They have little place for ambiguity. Certainty must be established.

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October 23 2019 By virtueonline DIVORCE IN THE ANGLICAN FAMILY: A Look Back at the Break-Up

Archbishop Williams's switch from "communion" to "family" reminded me of something I had written fifteen years ago, titled "The Divorce," because while "quarreling until the cows come home" is a nice sentiment, it is not the way many families end up. Fifteen years on, real repentance and reconciliation seem as far away as ever.

So at the risk of reviving unhappy quarrels around the supper table, here it is:


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