There are now, in truth, three Anglicanisms: These are, (1) the First Millennium Consensus, or Anglo-Catholicism, now mostly found in Continuing Churches, (2) Liberalism, now found in the Lambeth Canterbury Communion, and (3) Evangelicalism, mostly found in those bodies adhering to GAFCON. The Elizabethan Settlement has for all practical purposes collapsed and has ceased to […]
Earlier this year I posted Bossuet’s Elevations on Original Sin, and the last post in the series was on the horrors of idolatry. When I posted this, I thought: this is probably the lowest danger that Bossuet worried about, especially in the West. (We have idolatries of other kinds, but he was talking about the […]
It was the very day of our fall that God said to the serpent, our corrupter: I will put eternal enmity between you and the woman, between race and his; she will break your head. First, it is unbelievable that God intended to actually judge or punish the visible serpent, an unconscious animal: it is […]
Catholic keyboard warriors who “spend all day attacking and responding” on social media in the belief that they are “defending the integrity of Church teaching” have been sharply criticised by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin.
For those of us who have been at this in the Anglican/Episcopal world, this sure sounds familiar. Before social media there was the blogosphere, with people such as Kendall Harmon, David Virtue, Standfirm (Greg Griffith/Matt Kennedy/Sarah Hey,) Alan Haley and so many others, including of course Mary “BabyBlue” Ailes, now of blessed memory. Since social media many of these have migrated there, but it’s been rough: Matt Kennedy got kicked off of Twitter by Jessica Yaniv, who just lost the waxing case. And I’m seeing a mini-resurgence in the blogosphere, given the uncertainties in social media.
We on the conservative side (and we outnumbered the liberals by a healthy margin) were criticised as divisive, hateful, mean, bigoted, homophobic…you get the idea. And we’re seeing the same thing said about Catholic social media/sites, which have got the Archbishop’s dander up.
But the real fear among the RCC’s own “reapprisers” (to use Kendall Harmon’s term) is that all of this intensely offensive stuff actually works. We wouldn’t have the ACNA, warts and all, if it weren’t for the internet and those who inhabited it. We wouldn’t probably have GAFCON either. In the 1970’s opponents of the changes taking place in the Episcopal Church were marginalized before they could get off the ground; Continuing Anglicanism was hardly a blip on 815’s radar screen, and the Charismatic Renewal ended up filling Pentecostal and Charismatic churches outside of the Anglican world.
With the Catholic Church’s more centralized structure, and the obsession of the Trads with the authority of Peter’s see, seeing a path to progress is more difficult. But one never knows. The Anglican Revolt was the great story of American Christianity in the last decade; who knows what might come this time. Perhaps the Amazonian idols won’t be the only things thrown into the Tiber.
“Maslow, like [St.] Benedict, believed that unless low level needs such as physiological and social needs were satisfied, workers could not be motivated to achieve organizational goals. Figure 1 shows the relationship of Maslow’s triangle and Benedict’s Rule.” – Quentin Skrabec
With the canonisation of Anglicanism’s most famous convert to Roman Catholicism, there’s been a dust-up about Newman’s sexual orientation, especially by the dreadful James Martin, SJ (whose own mendacity about his own celibacy helped get him into the Society of Jesus.)
A long time ago this site posted an academic paper by David Hilliard about homosexuality and Anglo-Catholicism. It is, IMHO, one of the most interesting monographs written on Anglicanism in general and this topic in particular. Some of his own take on the subject, long before the stink surrounding the canonisation, is here:
This homoerotic motivation was strongly hinted at in the 1890s by James Rigg, a Wesleyan historian of the Oxford Movement, who made much of the “characteristically feminine” mind and temperament of Newman and the lack of virility of most of his disciples. The idea was developed and popularised by Geoffrey Faber in his classic Oxford Apostles (1933). His portrait of Newman as a sublimated homosexual (though the word itself was not used) has since been a source of embarrassment to those biographers and theologians who seek to present him as a “Saint for Our Time.”
Faber’s argument was brilliant but open to attack. Meriol Trevor, in her two-volume biography of Newman, undermined some of his illustrations, as when she pointed out, for example, that Wilfred Ward had given no source for the often-quoted statement that Newman lay all night on Ambrose St. John’s bed after the death of his inseparable friend, and that in view of other known events of that night the incident could hardly have occurred. Of the intensity of their relationship, however, there can be no doubt. On his death in 1890 Newman was buried at his own wish in the same grave as St. John.
I would suggest that my readers download and digest the entire paper; it’s worth the time. Hilliard points out something else that people like Martin (and probably Francis himself) conveniently ignore:
Until the late nineteenth century homosexuality was socially defined in terms of certain forbidden sexual acts, such as “buggery” or “sodomy. Homosexual behaviour was regarded as a product of male lust, potential in anyone unless it was severely condemned and punished. In England homosexuality had been covered by the criminal law since 1533 when the state took over the responsibility for dealing with the offence from the ecclesiastical courts. The last executions for buggery took place in the 1830s, but it was not until 1861 that the death penalty was abolished. In the 1880s and 1890s—at the same time that the word homosexuality entered the English language, largely through the work of Havelock Ellis—social attitudes towards homosexuality underwent a major change. From being defined in terms of sinful behaviour, homosexuality came to be regarded as a characteristic of a particular type of person. Because homosexuality was seen as a condition, homosexuals were therefore a species, which it became the object of the social sciences to explore and explain. The principal vehicles of this redefinition were legal and medical. Homosexual behaviour became subject to increased legal penalties, notably by the Labouchère Amendment of the Criminal Law Amendment Act of 1885. which extended the law to cover all male homosexual acts, whether committed in public or private. This in turn led to a series of sensational scandals, culminating in the three trials of Oscar Wilde in 1895. The harsher legal sanctions were accompanied over a longer period by an important change in the
conceptualisation of homosexuality: the emergence of the idea that homosexuality was a disease or sickness which required treatment. The various reasons for this change in definition are beyond the scope of this essay. The result, however, was that the late nineteenth century saw homosexuality acquire new labelling, in the context of a social climate that was more hostile than before. The tightening of the law and the widespread acceptance by opinion-makers of the “medical model” of homosexuality produced conditions within which men with homosexual feelings began to develop a conscious collective identity.
This transformation is why we have an LGBT “community” today, and that it’s a part of a person’s identity.
Mary Ailes died today. She was one of the pioneers of Anglican blogging who was in the thick of things from Truro in Virginia, in the early days of CANA. To me it feels like yesterday but it is quickly fading into the past. I met her in person once and she was a kind soul. I am thankful for her work in proving that blogs could be a great source of news, something that we have gone backwards on I fear.
She was one of the best in the Anglican/Episcopal world and one of the most enduring–and endearing. She spent her last years fighting cancer.
She was also a die-hard Bob Dylan fan, so it’s not inappropriate to say that she’s “knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door…”
The Prayer of Humble Access is a traditional part of the Anglican service of Holy Communion. I recently found out how beloved the Prayer of Humble Access is to so many Anglicans when I posted about it on Twitter. I posted what I thought was a slightly humorous tweet poll which indicated some questions I…
The recent “proposal” to eat babies recently set forth at one of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’ town hall meetings reminds me of a memorable quote from the great Chinese author Lu Xun. I’ve used this quote before (once in relation to the Chinese themselves) but it bears repeating with all of the cheap moralism that comes out of our society’s pores:
They seem to have secrets which I cannot guess, and once they are angry they will call anyone a bad character…Everything requires careful consideration if one is to understand it. In ancient times, as I recollect, people often ate human beings, but I am rather hazy about it. I tried to look this up, but my history has no chronology, and scrawled all over each page are the words: “Virtue and Morality.” Since I could not sleep anyway, I read intently half the night, until I began to see words between the lines, the whole book being filled with the two words–”Eat people.” (Lu Xun, Diary of a Madman, V)