What do you think the future of Orthodox Anglicanism will be?

Discussion in 'Questions?' started by S. DeVault, Jul 7, 2020.

  1. S. DeVault

    S. DeVault New Member

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    I ask this with hesitation, for a few reasons. Firstly, of course none of us can know the future, but I just wanted opinions. Second, I might me a little out of my depths with knowledge in asking this, and lastly, some people may not even consider myself to be an Orthodox Anglican, as I'm an Anglo-Catholic.

    But honestly, are we who are labelled "conservative" fighting a losing battle? It sometimes weighs on my mind when I think about my discernment. Then again, Christ promised to be with his church always, and that the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. What do you all think?
     
  2. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    Anglo-Catholics are Orthodox Anglicans so have no fear. ARe you familiar with the concept of the long defeat as expoused by JRR Tolkien?
     
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  3. S. DeVault

    S. DeVault New Member

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    I'm not familiar with that actually, would you be so kind to give me a q1uick summary?
     
  4. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

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    What is Orthodox Anglicanism and who decides if one is Orthodox or not?
    .
     
  5. S. DeVault

    S. DeVault New Member

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    I feel like that's sort of a leading question into a debate. When I say the word conservative, I'm certain that you, who is almost assuredly more knowledgeable than I am, know what I mean. I mean that Anglicanism that existed before the liberalisation of the Episcopal Church and the CoE. I don't wish to enter into a debate with you about whether or not TEC and the CoE are still Orthodox Anglicans or not. Reading a lot of the threads in this forum, hijacking a simple question and turning it into a debate seems to be your MO. Please refer to my original post, where I state that I'm asking for opinions, your's included. So in your opinion, what is the future of Orthodox Anglicanism, as you define it?
     
  6. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    To make a complicated thought simplistic here I go. That the world if fallen. We can't create utopia on earth. We are doomed to fail to the falleness of man but we will win some victories and some will be glorious indeed. We will haev the final victory in Christ. Until that time we fight the long defeat and celebrate the victories knowing that in the end the ultimate victory is ours through Christ.
     
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  7. S. DeVault

    S. DeVault New Member

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    Thank you for the summary! It makes sense to me from what I've just read but I'll definitely be taking a closer look into today during my down time!
     
  8. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I see the future of orthodox Anglicanism brighter today than it's ever been; certainly than in most of our lifetimes. Once the first women deacons were illegally consecrated ("consecrated") in 1977, the Anglican Church in America entered a downward corruption spiral that was not stemmed until the formation of ACNA in 2008. Granted that ACNA has inherited a lot of the ills still, including the gender ideology behind ordained women, but the caliber of people you find in ACNA are not the woke secularist radicals. You find decent good people who are sick of the secular world and its evils, and would like to recenter themselves on the Lord. As the saying goes, "personnel is policy". The sheer fact of a whole different breed of Christians within ACNA will mean very different ordinands, different clergy, different bishops, etc, from what the Episcopal Church had.

    You mention the Anglo-Catholic movement, and its huge war with the Evangelicals that's been raging in Anglicanism for two hundred years. At present it is the weakest that it's ever been, and those labels seem to have less and less purchase moving forward. I've seen a lot of erstwhile evangelical Christians becoming a lot more serious about the liturgy and the sacraments; and the Anglo-Catholic types are a far cry from the anarchic stone-throwers along the lines of Newman and Ward. No party within ACNA has issues with 'catholic' things. I see even evangelical priests being called Fr. And so on. Let's remember why the Anglo-Catholic and Evangelical movements have started: the ACs got their start because of the apparent strength of the Roman church against modernism; does anyone believe that now? The Evangelical movement got its start from the titanic and seemingly vast empire build by the Methodists upon incessant street evangelism; does anyone believe it is a model now? So while the two schismatic strands within Anglicanism have been weakening, the central orthodoxy, revolving around the Anglican spirituality and the Formularies, has emerged as an incredible draw in today's postmodern shifting culture. We are returning to the early church model; as the book's title goes, "The Patient Ferment of the Early Church".

    Finally, the point of gravity in all the churches, the Roman, the Anglican, etc, has shifted to the Global South: Asia and Africa. There are said to be 100 million covert Christians in China alone, and when they become legalized they'll overnight become the largest church in the world. Nigeria has 20 million Anglicans in it alone. And they don't abort and contracept like the whites do, meaning that their population growth is at 5 children per family. But while the Roman church also has the global south upswing, they have a huge downside: the chokehold the leftists have on the ruling structures means that they'll never allow the good Africans into positions. The stalwart and orthodox Cardinal Sarah (Ghana) has been utterly sidelined and marginalized by Pope Francis and his cronies, and no one considers him papabile any longer. But within Anglicanism there is no such chokehold. The whites used to be the majority, and when the white culture got corrupted, the whole Anglican Church got corruped; now that the Global South is coming, they'll bring their values in, and there's nothing the leftists can do to stop it.

    The era of the white leftist Christianity is over, it is finished. We just need to hold the tide here, while our brothers in Africa and Asia start sending missionaries here, just as we once sent the missionaries there. God works in mysterious ways.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2020
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  9. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    This is the most uplifting post I have seen in a while. I just wanted to cheer when I read it.
     
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  10. S. DeVault

    S. DeVault New Member

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    Excellent post, it definitely comforted my heart to read. I just hope that the white leftists in the Church will be willing to listen, or at least get out of the way, when the renaissance comes.
     
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  11. Shane R

    Shane R Well-Known Member

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    Have you seen this: https://anglicancompass.com/anti-ra...ow ACNA Clergy: On, 5 Sign the Letter. More
    It's got over 462 signatures, mostly clergy. The authors probably aren't secularists but they dabble in woke culture. I know a few of them and their congregations and for all of the hand-wringing, they are pastoring churches that are as much white enclaves as a Rumanian Orthodox church.

    A few thoughts on the OP. Americans tend to have extreme cultural myopia; most seem to think that America is typical of the larger world. It is not. Anglicanism is doing very well in other areas. The biggest danger to Anglicanism in the Global South is not government or even Muslim persecution (the Acts of the Apostles demonstrates to us that persecution aids the growth of the church) but the possibility of a Pentecostal takeover within the churches.

    In the white English speaking countries, Anglicanism will contract for at least one more generation. It is the task of men who are reaching ordination now, typically somewhere in their 30s, to chart a new course that will lead to revival.
     
  12. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    We don't have to get them to listen. Nature has a way of mandating a sunset to every generation.

    Yeah there are a few woke types, of course. ACNA is much more in the visible public limelight than the Continuing churches, and so it draws the general slice of America into the doors. Within it will be a few woke types. The question is how many. By the sheer availability of woke churches in the Episcopalian, Methodist, Presbyterian, and also Roman traditions means that there's simply no necessity for most woke types to enter ACNA. Most woke types will not even be Christian. Of the ones that are, most will enter the mainline churches as easier on their conscience and a lot more honest; a few will stream into ACNA.

    That being said, the whole uproar over BLM is much more confusing than it being an up/down vote on woke culture. There are many good people, including Archbishop Beach himself, who have participated in statements against racism without being even one iota bought into the woke culture. The media has confused the narrative and blurred the lines, so many incredibly good people are being confused. I wouldn't use the current BLM issue as a barometer for woke culture within ACNA; a better barometer would be woke proposals within the ACNA college of bishops, or (since there are none), woke proposals in ACNA media as a whole (of which there are almost none).

    Certainly, as there is a danger at all times, and in every generation. My point was only about trends, and whether there is (for once in many decades) a positive counter-narrative. That doesn't change the fact that people will always be fallen, and that we must maintain holiness, advance traditional piety, and repent as much as humanly possible.
     
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  13. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Christianity calls for human beings to view themselves as created beings made by God in His image, fallen in sin and needful of a Savior, called to love our God and our neighbors. The fundamental problem with mankind is sin.

    In contrast, the view currently being promoted views human beings as members of either a dominant group or a marginalized group, and the former are deemed wrong and hateful if they do not seek to divest themselves and others deemed dominant of whatever provides them with their dominance. In this scenario the latter (marginalized) people are viewed as righteous in their pursuit of nearly any means necessary to acquire power and liberate themselves. The fundamental problem with mankind is oppression; it is the greatest sin. Liberation (and the pursuit of liberation) is the greatest virtue. Almost anyone can find themselves in an oppressed group of one sort or another, be it through the oppression of racism, sexism, capitalism, or whatever; people may consider themselves victims of white privilege, age privilege, male privilege, Christian privilege, rich privilege, or any number of similar perceived oppressor groups. These perceptions are self-validating in the mind of an alleged "victim," because his "life experiences" have given him "special insights" which members of the oppressive group lack since they have never had such experiences; therefore any appeal to reason or objectivity is rejected as a bid (either unconscious or surreptitious) for continuation of the oppressive power.

    As one can see, this "woke" way of seeing humanity is incompatible with Christianity, for it substitutes "special knowledge" imbued by individual experiences for the authority of the word of God and of God Himself. When one's personal experiences and perceptions rule the determination of truth, neither the Canon of Scripture nor God will be respected as final arbiter of truth. If a member of the Christian "oppressor group" appeals to what God has said in His written word, the Christian's concerns can be dismissed as a veiled attempt to protect his power base and his privilege.
     
  14. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    A "Pentecostal takeover"? The phrase evokes visions of tongue-talking guerillas waving machine guns and wearing ammo belts across their chests, running into the Anglican church and taking over the worship service. :laugh:

    Honestly, if that's the biggest danger to Anglicanism, Christianity is thriving down there. And that's a good thing no matter what "brand name" the church wears! Provided we're talking about genuine Christians, of course.

    Some people will be inclined to respond to the Anglican way of worship and theology. Some others will tend to respond better to the Baptist way, the Orthodox way, the Pentecostal way, or the Methodist way of worship and theology. Within the various branches of Christianity, the goal is to preach the gospel and make disciples. Nobody's theology is perfect, simply because men are involved. Some are better and some are worse, of course, but those who strive toward that goal are glorifying God.

    If the Anglican Church is to thrive in the Global South or anywhere, it must preach the gospel and make disciples (and trust God to give the increase). If Anglicans are engaged in seeking lost sheep and pointing them through the gate of the sheep pen, Anglicanism will thrive. If not... well, it wouldn't be right to point the finger at some other group and holler, "They stole the sheep," if the others are also working hard (perhaps harder) at the sheep-seeking and sheep-herding. :)
     
  15. Rhys

    Rhys Member

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    Welp, considering the ACNA is capitulating to the zeitgeist, albeit at a somewhat slower pace than everyone else, I reckon the future of 'orthodox Anglicanism' will look a lot like the present state of orthodox Old Catholicism, the conservative faction of which is currently represented by the Polish National Catholic Church and the Old Catholic Communion of North America of which there appear to be a healthy (?) 26,000 members in the former and a very robust couple dozen or so communicants in the latter. Meanwhile the Union of Utrecht churches continue to hemorrhage and will eventually die the deaths of a thousand cuts from modern progressivism.

    The ACNA, in permitting female priests, will eventually permit female Bishops- this will undoubtedly spawn a schism or three and some of the remaining 'orthodox' Anglican churches will be social distancing in the triple digits mile-wise while others, particularly those near campuses, will become generic evangelical churches.
     
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  16. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Well-Known Member

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    The ACNA will never allow female Bishops. It is in the Canon's that they are not allowed and most diocese don't allow female priests.
     
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  17. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I'm optimistic that ACNA is going to gradually move away from female priests, rather than move toward more of them. It remains to be seen, of course.
     
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  18. Rhys

    Rhys Member

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    I'm of the opinion that a little leaven leavens the whole lump. It's a bad habit but it's hard to be optimistic.
     
  19. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I just don't see any tangible evidence of that, including the capitulation. There have been many instances where ACNA has stood against the zeitgeist, such as a recent statement by the college of bishops against sodomy:
    https://livingchurch.org/2020/01/21/acna-communique-reflects-emerging-institution/


    It didn't 'permit' female priests as if at one time there weren't any and then it enabled it. There were female priests in some of the founding dioceses, and the decision was made not to make a decision at that time, because the ACNA world did not have a strong enough rebuttal to gender ideology and many people would not understand the issues latent in that. That was in 2009, pre-Obergefell and pre-trans movement. Many people are much more aware of gender ideology now, and even more will be moving forward.

    It's a very similar situation with how in early America some states had slavery, so it's not that America 'created slavery', as much as some of the founding bodies brought it in within them. The decision was made, rightly so, to continue with slavery, for the sake of more important issues. Slavery, and women's ordination, are less important than existence, if that existence will later abolish those institutions.
     
  20. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Indeed, Thomas Jefferson's first draft of the Declaration of Independence included an explicit statement against slavery, but that statement did not survive the consensus and was deleted. However, Jefferson's language stating that "all men are created equal" and have "unalienable rights" from God did survive intact and became the basis by which slavery eventually could be outlawed in this country as Jefferson intended.

    Jefferson married a widow who owned a couple of slaves (through her deceased former husband). If Jefferson had freed the slaves immediately, they would have had no place to go or means of survival, so he waited and continued to support them under his roof until the situation improved.

    Despite these facts of history, poorly informed people today accuse Jefferson of being a bigot and a supporter of slavery.
     
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