Why be Anglican and not Catholic?

Discussion in 'Navigating Through Church Life' started by Achilles Smith, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. harlen

    harlen New Member

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    The Gerasene demoniac declares Christ to be " Jesus, Son of the Most High God"........but this confession does not found a Church.
    I understand most Protestant biblical scholars (of many hues) now accept Peter is the Rock.
    eg
    "In view of the background of v. 19…one must dismiss as confessional interpretation any attempt to see this rock as meaning the faith, or the messianic confession, of Peter. To deny the pre-eminent position of Peter among the disciples or in the early Christian community is a denial of the evidence" W.F. Albright and C.S. Mann

    The "confession as the Rock" is gymnastic; & full of holes.
    Jesus still confers practical, personal authority onto Peter. What do you do with that.
    And why is Simon renamed Rock? This is never addressed.
    You must know that renaming by God is deeply meaningful & purposeful.
    And it ignores the other passages where Peter is given particular & exceptional authority (Luke 22:31-32 & John 21:15)

    It is usually fundamentalist Protestants who manifest a presumption that "everything must be (or was) laid out from the beginning" (or at least from the collation of the NT.) "Show me the Pope in The Bible".
    Catholic thinking is that the Church is led into all truth. It is an evolution forged by events. There is a deepening of understanding, and a consolidation of truthes & new implications through the evolution of History & the challenges it brings. The emergent understandings of "The Trinity" is no different than those relating to Mary or the Papacy. The understanding of Peter's role is refined, deepened & developed through the life of Jesus' own Church.
    This does not mean that it was undisputed (nothing ever was). But the dissent does not invalidate it.
    There are/were dissenters from every doctrine & decision, and one can cherry-pick them from History to muddy any waters. But concensi do exist, as I think you acknowledge this in some instances. "Consensus" seems to be a debating point that can be used flexibly.
    Do you not agree the Church arrived at a "consensus" on Papal Supremacy?
    If you belong to the progeny of a dissent, how are you different from a Nestorian say?
    How do you pick & choose which dissenting groups were "right" & which were "wrong"?

    I think it is clear Peter was chief among the Apostles. Do you seriously dispute this?
    Or do you believe as many Protestants do, that this was only for the first generation of Apostles. I can see why they must believe this; but it makes no sense. As the Church grows its need for a visible head & focus of unity grows, & Christ's promise to Peter that the gates of Hell will never prevail against the Church on Peter implies permanency. And the Davidic Steward referenced by Jesus in Matt 16:18-19 was a succesive appointment.

    I ask myself why Anglicans & Easterns will accord a "primacy of honour" but neither supremacy nor jurisdiction?
    Ultimately; ..... is it so that you can ignore Peter? He becomes an impotent, decorous, historic symbol. Not a man with a serious job to do.
    And this would undo Christ's work & providence in appointing His Steward with real incarnate powers. Powers that obligate Heaven itself (Matt 16:18-19)

    I am surprised by your reading of democracy back into Acts & The Early Church.
    I thought it was "a kingdom"....."ruled with a rod of iron"
    I can appreciate the spirit of democracy is totally at odds with this.....but Rebellion is the quintissential sin....of Lucifer, of Adam & Eve, & of a "Reform-ation" become Rebellion, & "everyone now doing their own thing"
    It is always "I will not serve" ...."I will not obey"
    Et cum spiritu tuo
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2019
  2. harlen

    harlen New Member

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    The Pope's in-flight press conferences are not ex-cathedra pronouncements.
    I love Pope Francis, but he is no English speaker, and I don't know if his Italian is confusing but I find most of the translations confusing. Is he referring back to Luther's intention to reform for instance? It is not clear sadly.

    Elsewhere you are having to infer, or deduce, "alone" (sola).
    And it is the meaning of "alone" that is problematic.
    Do you accept a OSAS Gospel, where no matter how much you sin, or if you produce no fruit, you are saved & will be justified & saved into eternal life?
    That is the use put to "faith alone" in much of US-style Protestantism.
    If "Faith" includes our response of consent in works of Love, all through Grace, then we can say "Faith alone" but that is not how it is commonly used nor understood. For most people "alone" means "alone".
    Paul never says that our righteousness comes from faith alone—only that it comes from faith apart from works of the (Jewish) Law". Not the same thing....but you might infer it thus as above?
    This has to be read in harmony with James, Matthew 25 (where Jesus tells us Judgement is solely based on "the works of Love") and Jesus response to the young rich man who asks "What must I do to inherit eternal life"?......"Obey the commandments..."
    And it has to be harmonised other than by Luther's insulting of James, or demoting James, & creating a Canon within the Canon to fit Luther's tilted theology.
     
  3. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    They don't have to be ex-cathedra to be Papal pronouncements. In other words, you owe him moral obedience, whether or not this or that thing is infallible, by the virtue of him as Pope whom you acknowledge to be the Vicar of Christ Jesus, on earth.


    Once Saved Always Saved? I certainly don't accept it. It is a heresy, and most Protestants don't accept it. But I'm not speaking about that, because all I care to establish is that it has nothing to do with justification by faith alone. Luther for example was definitely not a proponent of OSAS. So you need to keep the categories separate. OSAS = OSAS. Sola fide = Sola fide.


    Martin Luther said that we are justified by faith alone, but not by faith that is alone.

    In other words, there are always corollaries that follow faith, namely works, etc. But in precise terms, it is only faith that is our grounds for justification in the eyes of God. None of our works can be sufficient to be merited in His eyes. That is the teaching of sola fide, as accepted now by the Roman church.


    You're confusing salvation with justification, which is just one element in the former. Jesus speaks of salvation, which cannot proceed if no good works are involved, for faith without works is dead.

    If you keep all the categories separate, then you'll see how the system fits, and why Rome now accepts it, and why the older Rome under Trent was wrong about this.
     
  4. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    That is correct. I see a clear difference between Primacy and Supremacy.

    I do not belong to the progeny of dissent. My views are quite different to a Nestorian, in that I embrace the notion of Mary as Θεότόκος (theotokos - God Bearer), as it reflects a profound understanding of the first 18 verses of the fourth gospel.

    The mind of the Church for the most part was clear on these issues in the councils.

    Generally I would accept this proposition, however It is clear that he did not have an absolute authority, and the Council at Jerusalem seems to suggest that James was the leader in some sense at that stage.

    Whilst I understand and appreciate you argument, it is possible that you are stretching the text to support the position that you accept.

    Or perhaps it is because we take the matter of the teaching of Jesus seriously.
    Matthew 20:24-27
    Jesus called them to him and said, ‘You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.’​

    There is a subtle difference between leadership and being in charge. Peter's views were not above question, and he was challenged. The command the feed my sheep, may be understood with a strong eucharistic overtione, or it may be a command to all of us as servants of the people of the world. Anglicans (and others I think) speak of being fed at two tables, (the table of God's word spoken, and the table of God's word incarnate). Jesus did not come to give us a bureaucracy but salvation and forgiveness.
     
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  5. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    Yes but Jesus doesn't appear to have followed his own example.

    So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why don’t your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands? (Mark 7:5) Defiled means not washed see Mk 7:3

    And here Jesus is caught in the act.
    But the Pharisee was surprised when he noticed that Jesus did not first wash before the meal. (Lk 11:38
     
  6. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    Didn't Limbo also get the official denial 3 or 4 years ago?

    But lets address the elephant in the room, If you are an Anglican you can practice contraception without any hassles. I fail to see the RCC objection to contraception.
     
  7. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Contraception was forbidden by the Church of England until 1930. In other words if you were a respectable gentleman in 1874, you were not allowed to use contraception by the Church. And even the 1930 decision only allowed it in marriage. Of course that was a catastrophic decision, but no one in the Church saw the catastrophic consequences that would lead to today. So the question is far from 'without any hassles'. The liberals accept it, the traditionalists are deeply concerned about it.
     
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  8. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    Thanks for that info Stalwart. It's interesting. How did this edict manifest itself ? Where would they have written it and was it for the USA or for Britain or both?
    Was the "catastrophic decision", the one to allow contraception within marriage and if so why?
     
  9. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    It was a resolution that was passed in the Lambeth Conference of 1930. I don't know the specifics of textual implementation, but basically the national provinces were then to follow it up in their own national contexts, and in that way the lands of the old grand British Empire, and the US Episcopal Church, eventually adopted the results of this resolution.


    In short, it was a camel's nose in the tent. It was nothing, just a minor change, and seemingly laudable one at that. It's hard to retrace how we went from the decent society of the 1930s to today's transgender priests and 3-4 divorces and abandoned families and broken lives.

    The best that anyone can reconstruct the chain of events is, the contraception allowance changed people's mindsets from seeing the conjugal act as primarily procreative (as is the Anglican doctrine), to one that is primarily pleasurable.

    To use a food analogy, people stopped eating salad and began eating cake. The Church, for all this time, taught the world that to be healthy, you have to eat in the following fashion. You can't just eat what you want, and certain things you don't eat, because the primary purpose of eating is to keep you healthy, not to bring you joy.

    You may privilege joy over health in food choices, for some moments in time, but never as a categorical decision on the level of high imperatives. On the level of high imperatives, food is, fundamentally, about health. And the conjugal act is primarily about family, not about you. The contraception decision in 1930 was the first, silent, sexual revolution -- get all you could want, all the time. Now, we are taught, from puberty, that it's perfectly alright, natural, and even commendable. Do it as much as you want. Get it as much as you possibly can. In fact let us teach you how to do it.

    And that's how people started eating cake, and dying of heart attack.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2019
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  10. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    Personally I don't blame contraception for this view, I blame Paul when he said

    "I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I.

    But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.


    I admit, I am weak and cannot "contain" , maybe Paul understands things better than the Anglican church! What do you think?
     
  11. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    P.s. I forgot to say Paul's quote is from 1 Cor 7:8&9 and I forgot the closing quotation mark.
     
  12. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Not sure I see your point. We as Anglicans also believe that it is better to marry than to burn. And we also believe that it is good for them to abide in self control, as St Paul. It’s all right where you quoted it above. What’s your point in this case?

    And to the larger point regarding contraception and the right way to view the conjugal act, St Paul would definitely *not* teach children how to get sex and do it in the best way possible. He would excommunicate such people as the lowest reprobates, and consign then to eternal damnation, wouldn’t you agree?
     
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  13. jschwartz

    jschwartz New Member

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    What makes one Catholic? It cannot be loyalty to Rome, since half the Church broke from Rome in 1054, and papal infallibility was only declared a dogma by the Vatican in 1869.

    The Caroline Divines emphasized the sacramental, incarnational nature of the faith, adherence to the 3 creeds of the Church, continuity with the Church Fathers, Ecumenical Councils, and the preservation of Apostolic Succession and ordained ministry of Deacons, Priests, and Bishops.

    I see Anglicanism as a faithful catholic witness, in the extent that we adhere to essentials of what has been universal. I look towards Eastern Orthodoxy and even Oriental Orthodoxy as determinants of what is truly catholic, in addition to Rome.

    I came into Anglo-Catholicism out of a lifetime of being Roman Catholic, leaving the Church over its conservatism, and then dabbling in various Old Catholic, Liberal Catholic, and other Independent Catholic movements. Old Catholicism generally only exists in a serious and organized manner in Europe; there are no churches of the Utrecht Union in North America. Thus, in order to be grounded in a more established and legitimate denomination, I chose to become an Anglo-Catholic in the Episcopal Church. My own theology is essentially Old Catholic and Liberal Catholic, and I have found great affinity for these teachings in progressive Affirming Catholicism/SCP-style Anglo-Catholicism. I am greatly interested in not only the Caroline Divines and the Oxford Movement, but also works such as Lux Mundi, Essays Catholic and Critical, and Doctrine in the Church of England, and the writings of William Temple, Charles Gore, etc. I also identify with Bishop Leadbetter and aspects of Liberal Catholicism- namely, the theosophy, the unity of all religions/interfaith theology, divine feminine theology, open communion, full acceptance of LGBTQ people and women in the Church, freedom of belief, and a high view of holy orders and sacraments. In addition, I affirm womanist, liberation, feminist, mujerista, environmental, queer, process, and other contemporary theologies, and have studied the Gnostic gospels. I love the scholarly bible studies offered in the Episcopal churches in NYC, often from faculty at Union or GTS. And I believe in Scripture, Tradition, Reason and Experience as sources of authority.

    My religious homes in NYC are the Little Church Around the Corner, St. Thomas, Resurrection, and St. Mary the Virgin. Occasionally, I visit Trinity Church, St. Ignatius of Antioch, All Saints in Woodhaven, Grace Church in Newark, and other parishes. I am interested in the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, Guild of All Souls, Society of Mary, as well as the monastic orders in the Episcopal Church (Priestly celibacy was never mandatory, always optional, until the 1200s in the Roman Church). I pray the Daily Office, often from the Monastic Diurnal or Anglican Breviary. I cherish my Anglican Missal, and love the 1928 BCP. I read daily Holy Men and Holy Women, A Great Cloud of Witnesses, and writings of the saints, whose intercession I seek. I go to Mass daily, pray the Rosary twice a week in church, and often at home, love Benediction, and pray the Stations of the Cross every Friday in Lent. (St. Dimitri of Rostov even participated in these devotions). I am also ecumenical, and on occasion, visit other mainline churches in NYC, refusing to see them as beyond the pale of Christ's Church, and enjoy the tension and uncertainty of it all.

    Thus for me, unless I were content being a Dissenter in the RC Church, I couldn't stay. (Although there are many fine people who do stay, and I pray for them. People in groups like Catholics for Choice, Women Priests, Call to Action, etc.)

    In brief, for me, the RC Church isn't fully and genuinely Catholic, in the sense that the RC Church has declared dogmas and theologies without basis in that which is truly and authentically Catholic. I find Anglicanism to be a perfectly acceptable witness to the timeless truths of the Faith- as expressed in the Creeds, Councils, and Fathers of the undivided Church, Apostolic Succession, Marian devotion, Devotion to the Saints, 7 Sacraments, a belief in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, Aural Confession, all of what RC, EO, OO, Anglicans, and High Church Lutherans share.
     
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  14. AnglicanAgnostic

    AnglicanAgnostic Active Member

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    Yes I would quite agree, but I thought we were talking about sex within marriage.

    My point is Paul is saying if you cannot contain ( which I assume means abstain from sex) you should marry. So for these people sexual pleasure will probably outweigh having children in importance. But you seem to think it is wrong to put sexual pleasure ahead of having children.

    I looked up your claim " seeing the conjugal act as primarily procreative (as is the Anglican doctrine), to one that is primarily pleasurable." In my B.o. C.P. It gives 3 reasons for marriage 1 Procreation of Children 2 remedy against sin and to avoid fornication 3 comfort and help each other.

    I know marriage was created for children but it was created for other things as well, like aeroplanes were created for fast travel but if I like fast travel I don't have to use a plane I can use a bullet train instead.

     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
  15. Lenhardt Stevens

    Lenhardt Stevens New Member Anglican

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    Are you trying to be comical by comparing transgender persons with marriages that end in divorce? Or that the permitted use of contraceptions by the Episcopal church in the 1930's has lead us into moral disintegration, despite that "decent society" being one of rampant sexism and racial inequality?
     
  16. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Not being comical at all.
     
  17. Rexlion

    Rexlion Member

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    Sola Fide is accepted by the Roman church?? They are now teaching that "none of our works can be sufficient to be merited in His eyes"? I have never gotten that impression. It certainly was not what I was taught in Catechism while growing up in the RCC, it is contrary to the decrees of Trent (which have not been rescinded, I'm quite sure), and it is vehemently disagreed with when I discuss the issue among Roman Catholics. If the official doctrine of the RCC were indeed to embrace Sola Fide, this would demonstrate that RC doctrine is not immutable... and that goes against their claim that their doctrines never have and never will change.

    For hundreds of years the RCC taught, "outside of the Roman Catholic Church there is no salvation;" this very statement appears in the Catechism from which I was taught, as a young boy in the late 1960s. Nowadays they soften their doctrinal presentation and say it's possible but very difficult... I think they've done this to lessen criticism and appear conciliatory (Islam does the same thing when in a weakened position). But they still maintain that anyone who has "known the truth" and yet subsequently left the Roman church (someone like me, for instance) is doomed to hell. So for all intents and purposes, #1 on the Roman list of 'what must I do to be saved' is, be a member of the Roman church! #2 is to be receiving their Sacraments of their transubstantiated Eucharist (not available anywhere else, they say) and their Confession (one must be absolved of sins by the RC priest, and they teach that no other church can do this). These views of the RCC itself and of Sacraments serve, practically speaking, to bind the members to the RCC so they are afraid to leave. Then #3, one must perform the penances given by the priest in Confessional and also do good things in life which can help remove the penalty for sins committed; one small subset of 'good things' is the acts which earn indulgences, for example the RC receives 7 years' indulgence from Purgatory every time the RC makes the sign of the cross with holy water. And #4, the Roman Catholic must be lucky enough to die without an unconfessed mortal sin on his conscience, for if he should give in to temptation and, say, skip Mass on some Holy Day of Obligation only to be killed before getting to the confessional and then doing his penances, RC doctrine says God's grace and Holy Spirit have fled from him and he must go straight to hell, do not pass GO or collect 200 indulgences.

    It is worth noting that Francis has made overtures to the Muslims and the atheists, and even to the Wiccans, but rather than make overtures to Fundamentalist Christians he calls them dangerous. (I think he seems to ignore Anglicans so far, as though they are beneath his notice.)
     
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  18. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    From what I have read, Pope Francis has told Anglicans that they need not convert to Rome and deems them 100% acceptable

    We have even had an Evensong service in St. Peter's basilica a few years ago
     
  19. Rexlion

    Rexlion Member

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    I hadn't heard that. Thanks. (Not that I felt like I needed Francis' permission to attend my current Anglican parish, lol.) ;)
     
  20. Peteprint

    Peteprint Well-Known Member Anglican

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    All the changes that I have seen in the RCC (at least most of them) have been positive and have moved the Church more in the direction of classical Anglicanism, not away from it.

    On a side note, I have never understood the fetish that Trad Catholics have regarding the Tridentine Mass, and the hatred they have for the Mass of Paul VI. I have attended numerous Novus Ordo masses, and I have enjoyed them. Nothing in the liturgy is heterodox.

    When I was Orthodox, I saw the same thing among those who fetishized the Koine Greek or Old Slavonic Liturgies. None of these liturgies are of divine origin; they are simply way to worship, and as long as the theology is sound, any liturgy does what is intended.
     

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