Wednesday, November 30, 2005

if the anglican use society took over ewtn, the weather report might be something like this...

Brilliant! If only... if only... *sigh*.

From the Rome Report.

That reminds me: Whist in San Antonio, MM and I went to Our Lady of the Atonement Anglican Use Parish for Saturday mass. Very impressive. Especially the triptych behind the altar, a picture of which I cannot seem to find online. See MM's blog for fuller, more trenchant commentary.

I thought the Anglican Use, at least as accomplished at Our Lady of the Atonement, was an improvement on both the BCP as well as on the Roman Rite -- especially the Novus Ordo ubiquitously implemented. It catholicizes the standard BCP liturgy (a good thing) with a more robust emphasis on Eucharistic sacrifice as well as the Communion of Saints (woefully lacking in the BCP). And it beautifies the Roman Rite with Cranmerian idiom -- and I imagine with general High Church Anglican liturgical niceness, although we were only there for a Low Mass and so couldn't really tell.

Think of the potential! These churches, of which there are currently only a handful, should be spread across the land. The robustness of Roman doctrine and devotion, coupled with the beauty of Anglican liturgy. A new day could dawn over the rather saturnine American ecclesiastical landscape, with its current backward emphases on Anglican (non)doctrine and (non)devotion, and Roman liturgical (non)beauty.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

c.s. lewis: 'priestesses in the church?'

“I should like balls infinitely better,” said Caroline Bingley, “if they were carried on in a different manner … It would surely be much more rational if conversation instead of dancing made the order of the day.”

“Much more rational, I dare say,” replied her brother, “but it would not be near so much like a Ball.” We are told that the lady was silenced: yet it could be maintained that Jane Austen has not allowed Bingley to put forward the full strength of his position. He ought to have replied with a distinguo. In one sense, conversation is more rational, for conversation may exercise the reason alone, dancing does not. But there is nothing irrational in exercising other powers than our reason. On certain occasions and for certain purposes the real irrationality is with those who will not do so. The man who would try to break a horse or write a poem or beget a child by pure syllogizing would be an irrational man; though at the same time syllogizing is in itself a more rational activity than the activities demanded by these achievements. It is rational not to reason, or not to limit oneself to reason, in the wrong place; and the more rational a man is the better he knows this.

Read the whole thing here.

Buy the whole thing here.

this is wild

Late last month, Jon Jacobs, an independent filmmaker from Miami, became the first person in the history of online gaming to spend $100,000 on a single virtual item when he bought a space station in the game "Project Entropia."

Read the whole thing here. To sum up, a guy has paid $100,000 in real-world money to own a space station in an online computer game. And its an investment. He expects the space station to generate over a million (real-world) dollars a year in revenue for him. These are strange days.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

++rowan to muslims: that's what its all about

The following is from an address by the Archbishop of Canterbury to Muslims at Islamic University in Islamabad. Excellent. I urge you to read the whole thing. Originally from the Anglican Communion News Service.

Imagine someone watching, over a period of about one year, the things that happen in a Christian church. They would be aware that one day of the week had special significance. Particularly if they were observing what happens in a historically Christian country, they would notice that Sunday is seen as important for meeting and praying. They would see that Christians met to sing and speak to a God whom they describe as the maker of all things and the judge of all things, and that they knelt or bowed in the presence of this God, thanking him and acknowledging their failures and wickedness. They would see that extracts from a holy book were read in public and that instruction was given by leaders of the congregation in how to understand this book. They would perhaps notice that most of the prayers ended with words referring to someone called Jesus Christ, and describing him as ‘Lord’. They would see that at different seasons Christians celebrated the birth of Jesus and also commemorated his death and his miraculous return from death. Sometimes they would hear prayers and blessings mentioning ‘the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit’. And finally, they would see that new members were brought into the community by a ceremony of pouring water on them or immersing them in water, and that the most regular action performed by communities of different kinds was the blessing and sharing of bread and wine. They would notice, perhaps with bewilderment or even shock, that this sharing of bread and wine was described as sharing the body and blood of Jesus.

In what I wish to say, I am trying to think what questions might arise for someone looking at Christians from the outside in the way I have just imagined. These may or may not be the questions you have. But perhaps the attempt to answer these questions will help bring other questions more clearly into focus.

Let me begin with the most obvious features of Christian prayer. We pray ‘through Jesus Christ our Lord’. And the best-known of all Christian prayers begins with the words ‘Our Father in heaven’. These belong together. Probably the most important Christian belief is that we are given the right to speak to God in exactly the same way that Jesus did, because the life, the power, the Spirit, that filled Jesus is given to us also.

We believe that Jesus, Son of Mary, is fully a human being. But we believe more than that. Because of the divine authority that he shows in his power to teach and to forgive, as our gospels describe it, we say also that the whole of his human life is the direct effect of God’s action working in him at every moment. Some of our teachers have said that his human life is like iron that has been heated in the fire until it has the same power to burn as the fire does.

We call him the Son of God. But we do not mean by this that God has physically begotten him, or that he is made to be another God alongside the one God. We say rather that the one God is first the source of everything, the life from which everything flows out. Then we say that the one God is also in that flowing-out. The life that comes from him is not something different from him. It reflects all that he is. It shows his glory and beauty and communicates them. Once again, our teachers say that God has a perfect and eternal ‘image’ of his glory, sometimes called his wisdom, sometimes called his ‘word’, sometimes called his ‘son’, though this is never to be understood in a physical and literal way. And we say that the one God, who is both source and outward-flowing life, who is both ‘Father’ and ‘Son’, is also active as the power that draws everything back to God, leading and guiding human beings towards the wisdom and goodness of God. This is the power we call ‘Holy Spirit’.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

happy thanksgiving

"Thanksgiving" in Greek is, of course, "Eucharist". Today, I was reading about the meaning of the Eucharist in the Pseudo-Denys. Here is some of what he says about the importance and meaning of incence processions:

We must, then, in my opinion, pass within the All Holy Mysteries, after we have laid bare the intelligible of the first of the votive gifts, to gaze upon its Godlike beauty, and view the Hierarch, divinely going with sweet fragrance from the Divine Altar to the furthermost bounds of the holy place, and again returning to it to complete the function. For the Blessedness, supremely Divine above all, even if, through Divine goodness, It goes forth to the communion of the holy who participate in It, yet It never goes outside its essential unmoved position and steadfastness; and illuminates all the Godlike in due degree, being always self-centred, and in nowise moved from its own proper identity; so, too, the Divine initiation (sacrament) of the Synaxis, although it has a unique, and simple, and enfolded Source, is multiplied, out of love towards man, into the holy variety of the symbols, and travels through the whole range of the supremely Divine description; yet uniformly it is again collected from these, into its own proper Monady, and unifies those who are being reverently conducted towards it. In the same Godlike manner, the Divine Hierarch, if he benignly lowers to his subordinates his own unique Hierarchical science, by using the multiplicities of the holy enigmas, yet again, as absolute, and not to be held in check by smaller things, he is restored to his proper headship without diminution, and, when he has made the intellectual entry of himself to the One, he sees clearly the uniform raisons d'ĂȘtre of the things done, as he makes the goal of his philanthropic progress to things secondary the more Divine return to things primary.

Read all of the Ecclesiastical Hierarchy.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

a nice picture

I thought this was a nice picture of ECUSA's Presiding Heresiarch. Hoozah.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

'southern exposure' from the ny times

As community after community across the South opened its arms to the displaced, small-town papers were awash in stories about middle-class whites who had obviously made homeless and penniless evacuees the first black guests ever to sit at their tables and sleep on their sheets. These breakthroughs might seem especially emblematic of change in Southern white racial attitudes, but my guess is that there were a lot of these “firsts” registered as well in homes above the Mason-Dixon line where Hurricane Katrina victims found shelter.

Hurricane Katrina should also have demonstrated to skeptical blue-staters that the South’s vaunted religiosity amounts to more than a convenient vehicle for political manipulation of the ignorant, unthinking masses. Black and white survivors told story after story of reciting the Lord’s Prayer or the 23rd Psalm as the storm raged around them, and though left penniless, homeless and uninsured, they expressed both gratitude and absolute confidence that the Lord would protect and provide.

If the Hurricane Katrina experience reveals that the South remains in many ways what Mr. Zinn described as a “marvelously useful” mirror where other Americans can see some of their nation’s most egregious flaws magnified, it also suggests that in looking southward these days they should recognize some of its most admirable virtues writ large as well.

Read the whole thing here. Via T19.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

primates of the global south to ++rowan cantuar on his comments in cairo

J-Tron hoped I would say something about the Global South's response to the Archbishop of Canterbury's comments in Cairo.

Some of the more interesting and incisive bits I have pasted below (read the whole thing here).

In general, both this piece and the previous statement from the Most Reverend Fathers gathered in Egypt reads like it could have been written in the Patristic Age. These seem to be men steeped in God's self-revelation. They seem to know it, to love it, and to commend it with a refreshing lack of self-awareness or the niceties of overly political scrupulousness.

Both the previous statement and this one strike me as profoundly catholic. Note the appeals to the consesus fidelium of the Holy Catholic Church, the appeals to apostolic authority, and the recognition that ++Wiliams's own archepiscopal authority, as primus primorum inter pares, is derivitive therefrom.

I love their uncompromising fidelity to the Truth of the Gospel, confirmed by Catholic witness, as well as their unfaltering confidence in the Bible as the Word of the Lord.

With regard to the last paragraph (below), about which J-tron asked specifically, I disagree that the Communions mentioned are "equally part of the... Catholic... Church." It strikes me as a careless statement, though one born of a sensitivity to the predominance of truly catholic disciplines and charismata among the Baptists and Pentacostals (primarily Biblical literacy and the "gifts of the Spirit"). Though cursory reflection on the matter confirms the greater relative importance of the Apostolicity of the Historic Episcopate for true catholicity, its also true that the more Catholic Communions could stand to learn a lot from our Free Church brethren about true evangelicalism and evangeliocentricity. I just wouldn't have used the word "equally". I don't think its accurate. But neither will I get my knickers in a knot over it. The shortcomings of Baptists and Pentacostals in terms of polity (and, indeed theology) are largely the byproducts of ignorance. ECUSA, on the other hand, is swiftly becoming willfully apostate.

The essence of libertinism is the severing of the grace of Christ from his moral commandments. This, we believe, is at the heart of our present divisions. Although it is right to be reminded both of the grace of God in Christ and of our own frailty and sinfulness, neither the greatness of grace nor the sinfulness of sin can be advanced as reasons for failing in our duty to guard the gospel. The church is, after all, “a pillar and buttress of truth” (I Timothy 3.15) and “Your word is truth” (John 17.17).


We welcome your pastoral example of coming amongst us as presiding Primate of the Anglican Communion. We recognize the limitations on your office, as the Communion has few legal structures. We agree with you that a Communion Covenant is needed. However, we are troubled by your reluctance to use your moral authority to challenge the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada to call for the immediate cessation of any blessings of same sex unions and on any ordinations of those in such unions in every diocese in the Episcopal Church USA and the Anglican Church of Canada. The apostle Paul never invoked law for his churches (indeed there was no canon law at that time), but he nevertheless exhorted them to be of one mind with him and to conform their lives to apostolic tradition (II Thessalonians 2.15). We do not see why you cannot warn these churches now, based on the Windsor Report and your own convictions about unity, that they will not be invited to Lambeth 2008 unless they truly repent.


We appreciate your sharing the testimony of your own pilgrimage of faith, including your early encounter with Russian Orthodoxy. We agree there is much to learn from other traditions, such as the Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Baptists and Pentecostals, who are equally part of the one holy, catholic and apostolic church. We are sure you must feel the shame caused by the brokenness within our own Communion when you interact with these churches ecumenically.

whose kairos moment is it anyway?

Much has been made of ++Akinola's comments in Pittsburgh about the need for North America's Anglicans to decide whether they are "ECUSA or Network". First of all, as I've admitted before, ++Akinola seems never to miss an opportunity to vituperate. Unlike some, though, I find him charming; and I think his bombasticisms are more trenchant than they are anything else.

The most interesting comment among the following are those from the Bishop of Springfield. Rome has a very serious opportunity here to repair a major breach in unity and reach out to, I dare say, thousands of Anglican clergy and laity. She may, though, opt not to damage her relationship with ECUSA (and Canterbury, if it comes to it). But at some point Rome will have to acknowledge the fact that it is the Anglicans, led by ECUSA, who have delivered the heaviest body blows to that front of eccumenical dialogue, first with the ordination of women, also with GC 2003, but more generally and significantly, with its contented, decades-long slide into secular humanism - indeed, in a number of high profile instances, I don't think 'atheism' is too strong a word. At some point, Rome will have to acknoweldge that ECUSA is no longer recognizably Christian, and that ECUSA certainly has nothing but a superficial commitment to catholicity.

More moderate liberals than Spong will haved to acknoweldge that it is his ideological program, his view of authority, the autonomy of human reason, and the privileging of the natural and social sciences over the Revelation at the center of Christian doctrine and practice which has fueled the moral victories the more moderate liberals claim for their own party. Make no mistake: it is (at best) a vague and vaguely benevolent Unitarianism that is winning the day in ECUSA. I cannot tell you how many ECUSA priests I have heard and heard of expressing incredulous condescenscion at the suggestion that Christian belief outght to be bound by the Nicene and Apostles' Creeds, or even such basal notions as Christ's divinity. The most rudimentary Christian doctrine is regardeed by clergy as an anachronistic threat to the self-evident trappings of civilized society: most usually the interchangeability of the genders and libertinism with regard to sexuality.

Make no mistake. Today we are moral conservatives faced wth a choice between conclusions incompatible with the faith of our spiritual fathers and mothers, a faith we purport to share with them. Tomorrow the same choice will have to be made by others, as other conclusions are drawn from the premises underlying the new morality: premises mostly about the epistemic priority of the social sciences over Christian Revelation and the interpretive authority of the Church Catholic. Today it is the Christian gay lobby who exploit the findings of Psychology sans God. Why, tomorrow, should it not be the Polygamy lobby or the apologists of 'open marriages'?

"Choose this day..." indeed.

Read the whole thing here.

Outspoken Nigerian Archbishop Peter Akinola, leader of the global Anglican Communion's most populous province, drew a standing ovation at the 2,400-strong "Hope and a Future" Conference in Pittsburgh when he said: "Bishops of the Network must realize time is no longer on their side…This is your kairos moment to make up your mind exactly what you want to do. Many of you have one leg in ECUSA and one leg in the Network…We here have all broken communion with ECUSA,” he said, referring to six other Anglican primates (provincial leaders) on stage with him. “If you really want the global South to stand with you, you must let us know exactly where you stand: Are you ECUSA or are you Network?"


"To be sure," he added, "several congregations have departed, and several others will depart sometime before General Convention in 2006. I would not hazard a guess on what will happen after that [convention]--especially because nobody knows what votes will emerge. As [the Rev. Canon] Kendall Harmon [of South Carolina] has warned repeatedly, Network congregations must plan for the likely scenario in which General Convention sends very mixed signals and does not explicitly reject the Windsor Report."


“I think to a large extent [Akinola] was reinforcing the fact that the Episcopal Church has voted itself into irrelevance,” said Quincy Episcopal Bishop Keith Ackerman, a bishop of the traditionalist Forward in Faith, North America (FIF-NA), which forms a non-geographical convocation in the Network. “Its failure to repent and its willingness to proceed with a business-as-usual mentality has caused conscientious primates to recognize that [ECUSA] has separated itself from mainstream Anglicanism. Those Americans who do not want to be part of a protestant sect as opposed to being a part of a worldwide Communion have to make a decision,” Ackerman told TCC.


“I’m not completely sure what Archbishop Akinola meant,” said Springfield (IL) Episcopal Bishop Peter Beckwith, another prelate aligned with the Network. “If he believes we should all leave now, I would disagree as I think it would be premature. We need to stay at least until after General Convention 2006 and probably until after [the 2008 Lambeth Conference of Anglican bishops]—mainly because that was the timetable the Windsor Report established. And though I would have had that timeframe be much less, there is good reason to be patient. On the other hand, I…made a decision a long time ago to go with the ACN. At best, my communion with ECUSA and Frank Griswold and company is impaired. I do not support him or `815’ in any way…

“After ’05 or ’08, if ECUSA chooses to continue to `walk apart,’ I would expect the ACN to be the official Anglican presence in the USA,” Beckwith told TCC. “If Canterbury and/or the primates do nothing in response to ECUSA’s inappropriate action or inaction [at General Convention], I would expect the global South to leave the Anglican Communion. At that point I will have a choice to make, and I believe my decision would be to go with the global South.”

“But just to add another possible significant dimension: What would happen if Rome would offer an Anglican Rite with the same basic polity and theology we have now?” Beckwith asked. “Isn’t it possible God will use this mess for greater unity in His Body?”


In his concluding remarks on Saturday, Bishop Duncan described the overarching theme of the conference as "Choose This Day" (whom you will serve).

"The choice is for Jesus Christ, True God and True Man," he said, as opposed to something less or counterfeit, as he believes ECUSA is offering. The choice is for "truth over accommodation, accountability over autonomy, mission over sullen inaction," Duncan told the gathering of Episcopalians/Anglicans from 77 dioceses and several extramural bodies.

The choice, he said, is one of "sacrifice and self-oblation" and "courage." He asked his listeners if they were willing to abandon their plans and agenda, to give up "homes, relationships, identities and influence" for the sake of "God's plan for us.”


“The plain sense of the archbishop’s words was the old exclusive franchises are no more. A new day is dawning,” Duncan said.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

bishop ackerman on hope and a future: i am an anglo-catholic

‘I AM’ has certain remarkable precedence in the Old Testament. It is not a credal statement, but rather is an ontological one. When certain descriptive words follow this statement of being, however, we are faced with not only a diversity of definition, but also an identity which may be subject to change by an institution or by the person who is claiming the word as descriptive of who or what that person is.

In the late 1800s to say that one was an Anglo-Catholic was to make a claim that was subject to near prosecution or persecution or ridicule depending upon where the claimant lived. In the immediate pre-1928 period and pre-World War II era, to claim to be an Anglo-Catholic would not always mean persecution, but could mean exclusion, and sent chills through the spines of bishops who often feared open rebellion in ‘moderately High Church’ settings. And yet, for parishes and dioceses, which had been formed by the heirs of the Oxford Movement, it always meant much more. It even meant more than incense every Sunday, regular Confession hours, Holy Day Masses, and Eucharistic vestments. It meant a way of thinking – a way of praying – a way of approaching the Mystery of the Word made Flesh (which was proclaimed daily at Mass at the Last Gospel.) More than that, it meant the Guild of All Souls, the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, the Living Rosary of Our Lady and St Dominic and living a Rule of Life under the auspices of an episcopal Religious Order with a Spiritual Director. It was not so much being against the majority expression of Anglicanism as it was living out the implications of an authentic English Catholic heritage which sometimes only existed in the minds of some, but more often than not was expressed by the pious faithful in the pews. For this movement was shaped in the trenches in what would be the forerunner of social activism, ministering in exile, as it were, in slums and docks where others refused to serve. Apart from being life filling by virtue of an environment of grace and peace whereby Christ was literally in the center, it was gracious and fun. Countless stories of ‘how boring church was growing up’ were not generally expressed by Anglo-Catholics. From the Asperges or Vide Acqua to the ‘Last Gospel’, every sense was stimulated. The style was gracious and though often eccentric, the faithful and priest seemed to exude a sense of awe themselves in the ‘Magnus Mysterium’.

Humor was great because there was so much to laugh about, and if we forgot, we could just read the ‘Fun in Church’ series from Trenton, New Jersey. And one knew exactly ‘the place to go’ when they traveled, because all good Anglo-Catholics memorized the names of those Shrines from St Mary the Virgin in New York City to the Advent of Christ the King in San Francisco, with marvelous stops in between. There was a type of Anglo-Catholic sub-culture, if you will, in the Episcopal Church, and it was like a family reunion when the American Church Union sponsored meetings, rallies, and missions, often led by the Archbishop of Capetown or the Bishop of Fond du Lac.

In spite of its marvelous eccentricities, and the apathy or disdain of the majority, this sub-culture made an impact on the wider Church. Prayer Book Studies, Liturgical Renewal, and a lessening of Catholic prejudice brought a new age for Anglo-Catholics, who could not believe that the centrality of the Eucharist, crucifixes, Stations of the Cross, and ashes on Ash Wednesday were slowly creeping into the Church along with icons (pre-computer ‘Icon’ days), Eucharistic vestments, and chanting.

Claiming to be an Anglo-Catholic suddenly was not so unusual, and having Eucharistic vestments often became the mark of the ‘card-carrying member’. And yet, for many Anglo-Catholics it was not the dawn of a new day. It was a shift in scenery. As new rites and rearranged sanctuaries came, the essence was not necessarily changed, for the piety remained. However, for some Anglo-Catholics something was not right. For those who had longed for the day when they could be seen as more than a somewhat credible minority, something was gone. As people left, and parishes closed or sought life with a new entity, fun was gone. For many it was like having the rug pulled out, and those who had celebrated a gracious, fun-loving faith felt a new exclusion. It was like sharing a unique gift, and having the recipient forget the giver.

Thus the ‘tolerated minority’ became a ‘divided minority’. Unfortunately in a Church that suddenly could accept anything, claiming inclusivity, the traditional Anglo-Catholic could not be accepted. Moreover, Anglo-Catholics themselves were divided. Which Roman usage should we follow? Should it be Trent (Anglican or American or Knott Missal) or Vatican II (Rite II or the Roman Missal itself)? Where should the Altar be? (East or West?)

A new breed of denominationalism even came into being – ‘Affirming Catholicism’ where a Province can alter faith without consulting anyone else, but can ‘look Anglo-Catholic’, and can even ‘vote out’ those who maintain what had hitherto been believed in all places, and still is by the majority of Catholic Christianity. ‘Will the real Catholic please stand up?’ This ‘affirming’ expression began to look and smell Anglo-Catholic, but who was at the altar changed, and what was said from the pulpit was greatly revised.

No one laughs anymore. People sometimes look out of the corner of their eye to see whether people now bow, genuflect or intentionally do nothing at the ‘incarnatus est’. The new question is: ‘What is the difference between a ‘renewed’ Anglo-Catholic and a ‘Low Churchman?’ The ‘renewed’ Anglo-Catholic knows why he doesn’t do the things that the Low Churchman won’t do. But it’s not fun anymore.

The joy is gone. The traditional Anglo-Catholic who worked the docks in England, who ploughed the fields in the Biretta Belt, and worked the streets of the cities as the only ‘white collar’ on the block, is now a curmudgeon. The future is fully in the hands of God. There are many, however, who do not look back, but look forward, carrying the gift, which they received like a fragile torch on a windy night. These caretakers have never believed that they could change the gift, but look forward to a day that is like the darkened church at the Great Vigil, waiting for the gift. Very few Anglicans ever celebrated the Vigil – just a handful of Anglo-Catholics here and abroad. These celebrants still gather and await the chant ‘The Light of Christ.’ And as the Light spreads in a darkened church building, in a darkened ‘National’ Church, in a darkened world, we await the words, ‘Thanks be to God.’

The Rt. Revd K.L. Ackerman, SSC

From All Too Common. Comment here.

Originally here.

the blogroll

Two new blogs, beloved.

First (the most beautiful blog ever): Theology of the Body. Anglican and Catholic.

Second: The Rome Report. There are many, I am sure, who will be watching this blog quite closely.

Both are in the links section.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

what ++rowan said

The church overall, the church of England in particular, the Anglican communion has not been persuaded that same-sex sex can be holy and blessed. Were it to decide that by some process unimaginable to most of you it would be by an overwhelming consensus. Only at that point would it be possible to say in the name of the church, this is holy and blessed. So I take my stand with the church of England, with the communion, with the majority of Christians through the ages.

I have in the past raised questions about this. I was a theological teacher for 17 years and along with other theological teachers raised this issue and discussed it. I have advance[d] ideas on this in the past, but the fact remains that the church is not persuaded, and the church is not Williams’ personal political parties, or any particular persons. I am loyal to the church which has asked me to serve, and I myself hold if I am asked about doctrine and discipline, this is what the church upholds. So, the authority that I accept has to be the authority of the whole body and that part of the body which is the Church of England and the Anglican communion has made its determination.

Read the whole thing here, at Global South Anglican. Via Titusonenine.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

can someone explain the persistence of the 'donatist!' cry?

In Pittsburgh, several bishops will perform on-the-spot confirmations during Saturday's closing ceremony, mostly for conservatives who do not desire the ministrations of liberal bishops in their home dioceses.
ACN spokesman Douglas LeBlanc said confirmands have already been vetted by their pastors and local ACN representatives.
"We realize that some [liberal] bishops may be annoyed by this pastoral care," he said, "but we did not create the problem that requires it."
The Rev. Ruth Meyers, professor of liturgics at Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Evanston, Ill., said Episcopal conservatives may be unwittingly agreeing with Donatism, a fourth-century heresy.
"It determined that the validity of a liturgical act depends on the minister who administers it," she said.
The early church refuted Donatism, she said, and St. Augustine, she added, "would have said the unworthiness of a minister does not affect the validity of the sacrament, as the true minister is Christ."

Read the whole thing here.

Via Titusonenine. This accusation of Donatism is persistent and ridiculous. As far as I know, no one is contesting the validity of the other party's sacraments. They're just being careful about the sacrament. One doesn't want to mock or blaspheme the sacrament by receiving it with / from those with whom one is out of charity. And please note that I am NOT saying that one or the other party is correct. I am only saying that the conservatives are not Donatists just because they refuse the ministrations of some party.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

the plight of iraqi christians

One 43-year-old Christian man, married with three children, "was killed last week because he didn't pay," said Dominican Father Mekhail Nageeb of Nineveh, near Mosul. He spoke in a telephone interview with Catholic News Service Nov. 2.

After a group of unidentified men went to the man's workplace to extract money from him, "he tried not to pay and he ran out, so they killed him," said the Iraqi-born priest, who is the Dominicans' superior in Mosul.

Father Nageeb said he knows about "more than 10 or 15 people" in Mosul who have been forced to pay exorbitant sums of money to anonymous groups who have threatened to kill the victim or abduct family members.

The amount of money terrorists demand from an individual can run anywhere from $100,000 to $150,000, he said, forcing many to sell their homes, furnishings, properties or beg relatives or neighbors for cash. Others, he said, simply flee Iraq for a brief period in the hopes of escaping the threats.

"It's a really catastrophic problem now," he said.

Read the whole thing here. From A Conservative Blog for Peace.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

the beginning of the end

All of this unrest in France is most disturbing. Pray for the conversion of the Moslems.

Almighty and everlasting God, who desirest not the death, but alwas the life of sinners; mercifully receive our prayer, and deliver the Moslems from blindness, and gather them into Thy holy Church, to the praise and glory of Thy Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Friday, November 04, 2005

two interesting articles

One is Fr. Kimel's continuing assertion of Anglicans' essential non-catholicity. (Wherin he continues his synecdochical broadsides against J-Tron, and Aff Cath's catholic aesthetics disguising a protestant core.)

The other is more on P.Ben's life preserver, such as it is: RC Archbishop Myers of Newark. First posted by Fr. Harmon.

My problem with Fr. Kimel's argument is that he picks out those elements of Anglicanism which are essentially protestant and declares them to be essentially Anglican. He has not, so far as I am aware, addresses the traditional Anglo-Catholic claim that Anglo-Catholicism is THE true and proper expression of Anglicanism. Such a claim makes the contemporary situation, at least in ECUSA, rather like the situation in Constantinople during much of the 4th century, the situation in which St. Gregory Nazianzus emerged as "the Theologian". The extent to which Anglicans are not Anglo-Catholics is the extent to which they are bad Anglicans. And I don't mean that the extent to which Anglicans do not "self-identify" as Anglo-Catholics is the extent to which they are bad Anglicans. Rather, the extent to which they depart from the coherent and contiguous teaching of catholic Anglicanism from Henry VIII and Richard Hooker, through the Nonjurors and Caroline Divines, the Tractarians, to Charles Gore and Michael Ramsey, is the extent to which they are bad Anglicans.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

st. malachy's prophecies

Is the world going to end soonish? Maybe. According to the prophecies of St. Malachy, there could be only one more pope after Benedict XVI:

In extreme persecution, the seat of the Holy Roman Church will be occupied by Peter the Roman, who will feed the sheep through many tribulations, at the term of which the city of seven hills will be destroyed, and the formidable Judge will judge his people. The End.

If the calculations of everyone are correct, Benedict should be "the glory of olives". Hmmm....

Read more here and here.

November 3rd is St. Malachy's feast.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

all souls

May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercies of God, rest in peace.

Rest eternal grant unto them, o Lord. Let light perpetual shine upon them.


Tuesday, November 01, 2005

judge alito, not surprisingly, seems to be a roman catholic

The family attends mass at Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament several miles away in Roseland, and Mrs. Alito teaches religious education classes there.

Read the whole thing here.

anne rice in the blogosphere

Anne Rice left the following comment here. Fascinating. God be praised.

Make what you will of this novel, but know that for me it was serious from the beginning. I believe in Him. I wrote it for Him. This is where my life, novels and all, has led. It's the book I never found; the book I want to read; the book I want to give. It's the Jesus of the gospels in time and space. If I make you think of Him for the first time in your life as real, then I will have succeeded. If I make you feel you were there for a little while, then I have succeeded. If I make you believe in Him as the Son of the Virgin Mary, visited by shepherds who saw angels, and Magi with gifts, then I have done all right. It's worth the risk. I don't want to make a mistake for all eternity. I want to get it right. Anne Rice, Nashville hotel, on tour for Christ the Lord.