Orthodox Bishops in the Episcopal Church

Discussion in 'Navigating Through Church Life' started by Justin Haskins, Oct 9, 2014.

  1. Justin Haskins

    Justin Haskins Active Member

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    Hi Everyone,
    I have been, for a long time now, interested in Anglicanism. I am once again going to try to give it a go despite the many very-far-to-the-left churches here in Chicago. In the meantime, my wife and I are looking to relocate for her work (she's a surgeon), and I was curious...Where are the remaining orthodox bishops in the Episcopal Church located? Any good dioceses to recommend? I realize the ACNA has many orthodox bishops, but it's easy to find where they are located. The TEC bishops are harder to identify for someone not "in the know" on such matters. Any suggestions?
    -Justin
     
  2. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Hi Justin,
    I would ask you to define what you mean by orthodox. What are your non-negotiables? I am a TECer in the Diocese of Georgia but I do not attend a parish regularly as I've moved from my home parish and the parishes around me are too liberal to attend regularly without heartburn medication. Savannah's St. Johns is one of the last bastions of orthodoxy in the diocese and it has been placed under Alternative Episcopal Oversight since the current bishop of Georgia does not espouse similar ideals. It's a wonderful tool and I admire the BofG for participating.

    In the end, the orthodoxy of the parish far outweighs the need for an orthodox bishop.
     
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  3. Peteprint

    Peteprint Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Dear lowly,

    I understand your position, but the Church is Episcopal after all. (by that I mean all the ancient orthodox churches). As St. Ignatius said, "Where the Bishop is, there is the Church." I think the orthodoxy of a Bishop out ways all other considerations; the priests are simply his assistants. I say this with all due respect, since I respect you and your views on so many subjects, but a heterodox Bishop is anathema to the churches with Apostolic Succession. I just can't agree with your last statement about the parish.
     
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  4. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Hello Peteprint,
    I appreciate your perspective on this, and as you've already shown, the church fathers stressed the importance of the role bishop in many of their writings. I also don't want to be misunderstood, if one has the choice between an orthodox parish under an orthodox bishop and an orthodox parish under a heterodox bishop, one should always go with the former. Sadly, that is not a choice most of us in TEC have, nor do most Americans regardless of denomination. In that case I believe the 39AOR back me up in not worrying too much about it. Article XIX teaches the Anglican understanding that "The visible Church of Christ is a congregation of faithful men, in which the pure Word of God is preached, and the Sacraments be duly ministered according to Christ's ordinance, in all those things that of necessity are requisite to the same". As long as the pure word of God is preached and the sacraments duly administered in your parish, you are in God's visible Church of Christ. A bishop in Apostolic Succession is requisite in at least some ways to that, but not necessarily an orthodox one, though that is preferred.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2014
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  5. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Further we have the assurance that harm done by a heterodox bishop, or any minister for that matter will have limited effects on the faithful. Article XXVI gives voice to this Anglican peace when it states that even though "sometimes the evil have chief authority in the Ministration of the Word and Sacraments, yet forasmuch as they do not the same in their own name, but in Christ's, and do minister by his commission and authority, we may use their Ministry, both in hearing the Word of God, and in receiving the Sacraments. Neither is the effect of Christ's ordinance taken away by their wickedness, nor the grace of God's gifts diminished from such as by faith, and rightly, do receive the Sacraments ministered unto them; which be effectual, because of Christ's institution and promise, although they be ministered by evil men." We can trust that God has promised the sins of the bishops will not damn those under his charge so long as they cling to the faith once delivered to the saints.

    From a practical standpoint, I have in my experience found that the danger of an unorthodox parish is far worse, given one's weekly or daily contact with it ,than an unorthodox bishop, who only visits once a year and occasionally sends out a letter. But best of all, I think we can all agree, would be a situation where both parish and bishop are orthodox, and that is certainly what I pray for.
     
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  6. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I don't think lowly was disagreeing with you. We're anglicans. "Where is the bishop, there is the church." His point (seemed to me) is about a irregular situation when you're in a highly heretical environment, like among the 4th century Arians where most of the bishops were heretics. Of course your ultimate goal is to find that one St. Athanasius, but in the meantime, it's a question of finding a faithful community of lay people to join with.
     
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  7. Justin Haskins

    Justin Haskins Active Member

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    To answer your question...Although I think we can define "orthodox" in a number of ways, I would say it's pretty safe we can all agree "orthodox" at least means believing in the authority of the Bible and the ancient creeds in their literal understandings. I can tolerate differences of opinion on a lot, but not when it comes to who Christ is, why Christ came, and what Christ did. Those are the essentials.
     
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  8. Justin Haskins

    Justin Haskins Active Member

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    I agree. I think the orthodoxy of the bishop is what matters. Not even Roman Catholics can control every parish.
     
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  9. Justin Haskins

    Justin Haskins Active Member

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    Valid point. One I'm sure Luther would be proud to see.
     
  10. Justin Haskins

    Justin Haskins Active Member

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    This, I think, is a really good claim, but in today's world, we know have the ACNA, etc. I think it's fair to say that if someone is an Anglican who lives in a diocese led by a heretical bishop, that individual should try to find an orthodox congregation. No one is disagreeing with that, you are right. But what if an orthodox bishop IS nearby? That's the point. This is why I am trying to find who the orthodox bishops are that remain in the TEC.
     
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  11. The Hackney Hub

    The Hackney Hub Well-Known Member

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    The orthodox dioceses are:

    Albany (+Love)
    Central Florida (+Brewer)
    Dallas (+Stanton, just retired not sure who is the new bishop)
    Eau Claire (+Lambert)
    Fond du Lac (+Gunter)
    North Dakota (+Smith)
    Northern Indiana (+Little)
    Springfield (+Martins)
    Tennessee (+Bauerschmidt)
    Western Louisiana (+Owensby)

    These are the Communion Partners dioceses. There are also orthodox bishops in Texas, West Texas, and other places, not entirely sure of where they all are.
     
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  12. highchurchman

    highchurchman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Dear Hackney,
    After reading your previous and always interesting mails, the question is could you explain what, to you, is orthodox? For myself, orthodoxy is to agree with the views of the Early Church & The Laudian Church? These purely as teachers of the ancient faith!
     
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  13. The Hackney Hub

    The Hackney Hub Well-Known Member

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    It tends to mean creedal orthodoxy.
     
  14. Justin Haskins

    Justin Haskins Active Member

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    Thanks for this...It was what I was looking for.

    -Justin
     
  15. DerekHMoore

    DerekHMoore New Member

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    The diocese of West Texas has an orthodox bishop, and we just elected his sufferagen (also orthodox) to take over in a couple of years.
     
  16. highchurchman

    highchurchman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    What is different in the ACNA? They have women priests do they have women Bishops?
    From what literature I have read, (it was ancient) they only believe in four councils! Where are they different?
     
  17. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I can only speak from the REC point of view (a jurisdiction within ACNA) but heck no there are no women bishops and Catherine Jefferts Schori is openly called a heretic so take from the what you will. And she is a heretic. A few women priests got grandfathered in from the TEC days, in 2008, but there is no future for it in the long term, as the vast majority rejects it. They're also not recognized within REC. Another difference (if I put on my REC spectacles) is our intensely strong social conservativism, detestation of sodomite marriage, our strong marches pro-life, and, complementarian view of gender. The REC offers the gold standard within that, in a holy, reverent high liturgy whereas some of the other ACNA churches sometimes resort to pop instruments and digital projectors, while eschewing chants and a holy Hymnal which forms the bread and butter of the REC.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2014
  18. seagull

    seagull Active Member

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    I'm not sure how you define "heretical" in this context.

    As for as I'm concerned, all the Bishops in the Church of England, the Church of Ireland and the Church in Wales are orthodox. I imagine that's the case in the Scottish Episcopal Church too, though I know less about it.
     
  19. Classical Anglican

    Classical Anglican Active Member Anglican

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    How do you define orthodoxy?
     
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  20. highchurchman

    highchurchman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 6, 2014
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