High and low perspectives

Discussion in 'Church Strands (Anglo-catholics & Evangelicals)' started by anglican74, Jun 12, 2022.

  1. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Yes, the sacrifice of Christ on the cross was once and for all, but there are several types of sacrifice. This is why there is a page-long prayer of oblation and sacrifice in the 1662 Prayerbook.

    As Bishop Burnet says,

    "Though we deny all propitiatory Sacrifices, but that which our Blessed Saviour offered for us once on the Cross; yet we acknowledge that we have Sacrifices in the true strict and Scriptural notion of that word; for propitiatory ones are but one sort of Sacrifice, which in its general notion stands for any Holy Oblations made to God; and in this sense, Thank-Offerings, Peace-Offerings, and Free-will Offerings, were Sacrifices under the Law; so were also their Commemorative Sacrifices of the Paschal Lamb, which were all Sacrifices, though not Propitiatory. And in this sense our prayers and praises; a broken heart, and the dedicating our lives to the service of God, areSacrifices, and are so called in Scripture; so also is the giving of Alms. And in this sense we deny not but the Holy Eucharist is a Sacrifice of Praise and Thanksgiving; and it is so called in one of the Collects. It is also a Commemoration of that one Sacrifice which it represents, and by which the worthy receivers have the virtue of that applied to them. The Oblation of the Elements of Bread and Wine to be Sanctified, is also a kind of Sacrifice; and in all these Senses we acknowledge the Sacrament to be a true Sacrifice, as the Primitive Church did."

    https://laudablepractice.blogspot.com/2021/03/very-fully-and-formally-given-in-our.html
     
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  2. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    I am reminded of Dix's judgment of Cranmer in The Shape of the Liturgy:

    We have to remember that when Cranmer wrote 1549 he already believed that the 'spiritual feeding on the most precious Body and Blood or our Saviour Jesus Christ' is nothing else but the purely mental remembrance of the passion with faith...in his idea 'to eat the Body and drink the Blood of Christ' spiritually is nothing else but to 'but believe in our hearts that His Flesh was rent and torn for us upon the cross and His blood shed for our redemption'; or as Zwingli put it, we bear witness by receiving the bread and wine 'to our belief that we are all miserable sinners, but by His Body given and Blood poured forth [in the passion, not the eucharist] we have been cleansed from sin and redeemed from everlasting death.'
    Indeed, outside the recitation of the Creed, there is no mention in the 1662 Communion rite of Christ's Resurrection, except for the Prefaces of Easter and Ascension (and, of course, the Sunday Collects). This was an important omission, given that it was the Resurrection that was understood to make Christ's presence in the sacrament possible, according to both the Medieval Doctors, and the Eastern Orthodox.
     
  3. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Oh, I thought Burnet was off-limits here since he was supposedly "Latitudinarian"...
     

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    Last edited: Jun 20, 2022
  4. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    I feel like their has to be more to this quote. Even at his worst Cranmer was a receptionist from what I have read and seen. Even then if Cranmer had been a memorialist it still stands that no one for 1500 years taught this and it was not the official teaching of the Anglican Church.
     
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  5. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Dix did not appear to recognize a distinction between receptionism and memorialism, and thus held that the Zwinglian interpretation of the Lord's Supper was the intended meaning of the 1552 BCP's Communion rite. Dix was one who wished to overcome Anglicanism's Protestant liturgical and theological heritage, so I figured there was a possibility you might at some point have perused The Shape of the Liturgy (or, at least, the concluding chapter that contains his reflections on the BCP). It was hugely influential in the "liturgical renewal" movements of the 1960s and 1970s but has fallen somewhat from the precipice where it once stood. Some of his interpretations remain controversial. But he is worth reading nonetheless. There is a good summary of his work in Alan Jacob's The Book of Common Prayer: A Biography (which is excellent).
     
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  6. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Well this thread went off topic quickly. Way to go with squashing my topic with extraneous sidepoints.
     
  7. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Extraneous? Different understandings of the Eucharist were always an important component of competing visions of churchmanship. Nobody’s trying to derail your topic.
     
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  8. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    But I am not talking about competing visions of churchmanship, or who is right, or whatever
    I am saying to pox on all your houses, you're all wrong, and the world we're coming into doesn't care about all your "competing visions"

    These "visions" are irrelevant to the Anglicans of the future who are much more concerned about different issues than what a Victorian Englishman debated about
     
  9. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Ok. Let’s circle back to the opening statement in your original post:
    1. Who are these “Anglicans of the future”, referred to above, and why is this issue important for them? (“Anglican” to me means those Churches which have maintained communion with Canterbury, rather than those bodies who are attempting - and believe it is possible - to recreate and reinvent Anglicanism, in such a way that it can somehow be sealed off from influence from the broader culture, without doctrinal uniformity on the same contested issues that sustains the high church/low church distinction in the first place.) In the Episcopal Church, we tolerate different points of view on these things and manage to get along and pray from the same BCP just fine. It’s not an issue for us.
    2. Since you see this as an issue for the ACNA, what do you propose is the solution? Even on this Forum, it’s evident that there are a variety of views of churchmanship and the sacraments, and I believe that all are held in good faith. The problem is that some of these views directly contradict each other. They can’t all be right. Two (or more) different groups cannot compete for the same territory indefinitely; at some point, barring an agreement of mutual toleration and coexistence, one or the other must prevail.
    3. In the Episcopal Church, there is a spectrum of ‘formality’ that one finds in varying degrees from parish to parish, but I’ve never been in any particular parish church and thought “this is definitely high/low church”, nor have I ever heard anyone actually talk that way about it. I also suspect that if I brought it up in a group that I would get funny looks.
     
  10. Bert Gallagher

    Bert Gallagher New Member

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    As the separation continues to grow larger, most view there to no longer to be two mutual options.
     
  11. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    What do you mean:
    1. High church vs. Low church, or
    2. Mainstream Anglicanism vs. breakaway groups?

    Assuming you meant the latter (I’m not sure), the separation really isn’t that great at the moment, aside from the schismatic hierarchy. The only real issue separating the viewpoints of the two respective groups is the question of how much (not whether) to embrace LGBTQ Christians. That separation will probably narrow rather than widen over time, while I suspect properly theological differences will emerge and multiply, probably to a large extent as a result of the ACNA’s embrace of evangelicalism as well as certain aspects of the charismatic movement. (We liberal Christians don’t typically go for speaking in tongues or praise-and-worship music.) Over time it’s going to be harder and harder for groups like the ACNA and LCMS to differentiate themselves from broader evangelicalism, at the same time that evangelicalism becomes less and less recognizably Christian in terms of the historic Confessions (to say nothing of the liturgy).

    Also, what do you mean by “mutual options”?
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2022
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  12. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I mean simply the future generations of Anglicans... Each new year brings with new children being born, new youth being confirmed, new converts being received;... The church is always ready to be grown by the Holy Ghost, if it aligns with God's will, and as we see Anglicanism growing far beyond its scope 300-400 years ago, we see that the world is hungering for Anglican doctrine and spirituality, so there will always be new converts that would like to abide by the scriptures, the fathers, the prayer book, etc....

    The question is however, the things they worry about, or matter to them, will they be the same as the things that excited the emotions of a nineteenth century English gentleman? Will they care about whether we should use 2 candles or 6? Or will they think that those were dumb debates that never should've existed?


    If what you mean is the lamentable high-low church divide which was created in 19th century England, then I don't see this as an issue for the ACNA.... Indeed we have inherited its after-effects, so we have to deal with it, but it does not plague us like it still plagues England, where as @PDL can attest you'll have good conservative orthodox Bishops walking around in t-shirts and shorts (because they have a beef against vestments), and next to them fiddleback-chasuble wearing clerics (because they have a beef against the Reformation)....

    We simply don't have that dumb pissing context to the same extent in the US, and what I'm saying is, it's getting weaker by the year: I am seeing low church adherents become totally fine with adopting high church elements, and high church adherents losing faith in quasi-Roman theology and re-embracing the Anglican divines, the reformation, the church fathers, and above all Scripture

    I am seeing a mutual fusing, a diffusion of boundaries between those two camps, and a fusion into a renewed new united Anglican identity

    FOr example this is a photo of David Virtue, a firebrand "evangelical" Anglican in the US, look at what's all around the walls of his personal office:

    IMG_0803 (2).jpg
     
  13. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    I agree. Every Episcopal parish I've ever been in has been pretty much the same in terms of the way things were done. There is a fairly predictable mix of 'high church' and 'low church' elements that everyone seems to be comfortable with. The problem is that this style of worship - unfortunately - does not seem to appeal to many people anymore. It is a prospect I do not relish, but Anglicanism as an identifiably unique system of Christian practice may be in its twilight years.
     
  14. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

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    I'm not so sure you may be right about this in England though. Normal people, (I mean the 'I have my beliefs but don't go to church a lot' type of 'normal people', as opposed to fanatical religious types, who are very sure what denomination they've chosen and exactly why), normal people still expect to come back to 'church' sometime and find people doing the kind of thing and wearing the kind of clothes, and saying the kind of whacky things that the Church of England does, complete with various numbers of candles and or sometimes, smoking smelly stuff. It all has a kind of 'normality' to it for them. The problem is with their children, who not having been exposed to this 'whacky stuff', be it low or high, since their 'christening', of which they have no recollection whatever and have retained no evidence of, other than a never again lit candle and perhaps a baptism service leaflet stuffed in some drawer somewhere or other, somewhere in the house, but no one knows where they might be. The appeal may still be there but it is now completely devoid of meaning and relevance for them and THAT is entirely their own FAULT. It is THEY who have wandered from the fold, like the lost sheep, got lost under a sideboard like the widows coin, or ended up with pig pods for lunch like the prodigal son.

    Basically it is our job in this perverse generation to make the NEVER CHANGING message of Christ to the world RELEVANT to their current NEED. Instead we argue about irrelevancies such as the ordination of women, (why not), how many candles there should be on the altar, (how many) or whether gay people can be loved by God or should we beat them into submission with the law until they are willing to behave like we normal, human, righteous folks do. (are we preaching Grace in the Kingdom or the compulsory imposition of God's regulation and Law OT style). (note: I'm not however suggesting that wisdom should not be encouraged, among those that enter The Kingdom).

    The church is in a hell of a parlous state, and quite rightly so in my opinion. It is failing its Master. It's not doing its job for Christ. Most of it is just being very self righteously religious like the Pharisee was in the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector. The rest of it seems as lost as the sheep it's supposed to be rescuing.

    End of rant: As you were. :laugh:
    .
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2022
  15. PDL

    PDL Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I really have no idea where you get the idea from this plagues England. I have not said what you claim. To the best of my knowledge all the Church of England's bishops wear vestments. Indeed, the majority of them will wear vestments once considered to be 'high church'. Plus, the wearing of vestments is not a rejection of the Reformation. Indeed, quite the contrary. Anglo-Catholics do not think the Reformation in the Church of England banned vestments.
     
  16. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I think you read it the opposite, as I've said precisely what you've said, the Anglo-Catholics go for biggest vestments, while Evangelicals go for the least vestments

    Here is bishop Rod Thomas, you wouldn't know it by his appearance but he's one of the most conservative and orthodox bishops left in the Church of England

    Screen Shot 2022-07-02 at 12.21.54 PM.png

    It is a well known problem in England that the low churchmen seek to downplay vestments, while the high churchmen seek to maximize vestments even beyond their historical bounds, looking ridiculous in Tridentine fiddleback chasubles; so both sides look ridiculous, because there is an exaggerated conflict between 'high' and 'low' which as I'm recording, the rest of the worldwide Anglicanism is moving beyond from this point on
     
  17. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I think there should be as many candles as the rector, under the guidance of the vestry, decides. There, easy-peasy. :)

    I visited a TEC parish in OK a couple of times, so when I happened to look at a couple of recorded services at a TEC parish in PA (St. Paul's, Doylestown) I was surprised to see some pretty extensive incensing at multiple times during the services, and the communion table was situated such that the priest had his back to the congregation during most of the eucharistic portion of the service. After the words of consecration the priest genuflected before the host and then elevated it as high as his arms could reach and then genuflected again, all accompanied by the ringing of chime-bells like we had in the RC parish of my childhood. (Same with the chalice.) How does this compare to what you've experienced? I'm curious, and your TEC experience is far more extensive than my 2 visits and minor YT browsing.
     
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  18. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    I prefer the priest to face away from the congregation. I don't think it is necessary but I think it is proper as it puts us all in the same position as worshipping. After all liturgy means work of the people. Also I don't mind incense and there is Biblical precedence for it in Malachi 1:11 and in Revelation
     
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  19. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    I also prefer that the priest face away from the congregation. I am not sure why facing the people ever became a ‘thing’ in the first place.

    Another pet peeve of mine is pauses/interruptions, e.g., stopping the liturgy midway through to do parish announcements. A properly done liturgy does not contain pauses or interruptions. Do the announcements after the liturgy has concluded, IMHO.
     
  20. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I'm not objecting to the incense or to the facing away, I'm just saying it is different than what I saw in the nearby parish so I'm wondering what's more prevalent in TEC. Can someone answer that?

    I do have some discomfort over all the chime-bell ringing and elevation of the elements.