Episcopal Church Plans Big Pansexual Rights Push in Africa

Sep 1, 2015 by

By David Virtue, VOL: In Salt Lake City this past July, the Episcopal Church passed without controversy resolution A051 “in support of LGBT African Advocacy” that included hundreds of thousands of dollars to push its sexual agenda on the continent of Africa in direct defiance of Lambeth resolution 1.10 and subsequent calls by Global South leaders to turn back from their wicked sexual ways. The sheer gall TEC has in pushing an unwholesome behavior that has within it the seeds of death in the name of rights, deemed unnatural to most Africans should not be underestimated. Money and flights help. Even as TEC slowly withers on the vine (some 45 percent of parishes are without a full time priest and two thirds of its congregations are made up of middle age women who have about as much interest in Africa except as a tourist destination or ISIS has in winning Tasmania for Allah), Episcopal leaders are hell bent on sodomizing Africa in the name of a revisionist sexual god of their own devising. During and since the 1990s Global South African leaders have pled repeatedly in one Primates meeting after another and in one communique after another that western pan Anglican archbishops and bishops should obey their calling to renounce and drive away all strange and erroneous doctrines. They have steadfastly refused to do that. In the name of Indaba, (a faux listening process set up in London and paid for by The Episcopal Church), and calls for generous orthodoxy and greater inclusivity, TEC leaders have adopted the stance that the best defense is an offense, even as all the indicators are that TEC will not be around as an institution 35 years from now. Read here...

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Women make up Two-Thirds of Episcopal Church, new Survey finds

Aug 30, 2015 by

by David Virtue, VOL: For several months, VOL has been engaged in learning just how deep and wide is the influence of women in the Episcopal Church. As you know, we now have some 21 women bishops in TEC. The first to be consecrated was Barbara Harris in 1989; the last is Audrey Scanlan who will be consecrated the XI Bishop of Central Pennsylvania in September. There are hundreds of women clergy. In fact a survey of over 7,000 parishes, conducted by a research team, revealed that some 32% of all clergy in TEC are women, but the big news is this. Nearly two-thirds of all congregations, some 62%, are made up of women with the remaining 38% being mainly men over 60 with just a sprinkling of young people. This raises many questions, foremost of which is what have women achieved by way of church plants or church growth, and secondly, what is the long-term health and future of the church? The answer to the first question is obvious: women bishops and women clergy have not made churches grow, even putting aside the ecclesial question as to whether women ought to be priests. They simply cannot and do not attract men or families to continue the Episcopal species. The Episcopal DNA pool is drying up. And the long term health of the Church is also in question. Where is the next generation of Episcopalians to keep the doors open? Women bishops and women clergy, as well as openly gay and lesbian priests, are not draw cards, despite Bishop Gene Robinson thinking it would be. Read here (scroll down a little)...

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Anglican Church Decline in the West – The Data

Aug 23, 2015 by

From Church Growth Modelling blogspot (Hat Tip: Barbara Gauthier) The Anglican Church, once a key institution in the English-speaking world, has suffered decline for over half a century. Although in both the UK and North America there are many examples of growing and lively Anglican churches, as national denominations the trend is downwards. This decline is in marked contrast to continued Anglican growth in Africa and other parts of the world. There the church is healthy. In the West it is sick. The question is – is the Anglican sickness unto death? In this blog I explore the different patterns of Anglican decline through four denominations: the Church of England (C of E), the Church in Wales (C in W), the Scottish Episcopal Church (SEC), and the Episcopal Church of the USA (ECUSA). The study is not perfect, nor is the data, but I hope it inspires debate and other studies. A subsequent blog will suggest possible reasons for their differences in decline. Read here...

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Evangelicals, orthodoxy and same sex relationships: key responses

Aug 22, 2015 by

Evangelical Episcopalians Begin Long Slide away from Orthodoxy on Same Sex Marriage by David W Virtue, DD, VOL: In what was once thought to be almost impossible to imagine or think, evangelicals in The Episcopal Church are slowly abandoning the solid foundation of Scripture on human sexuality… …Even as other liberal mainline denominations slowly rolled over, three groups remain staunchly opposed to changing the Church’s received teaching on sexuality. Mormons, Roman Catholics, and Evangelicals of one stripe or another remained firm that homosexuality activity is contrary to God’s law. This was reinforced by the rising influence of the Global South… …Evangelicals stood stubbornly on Scripture…Then an evangelical sea change occurred. Certain evangelical leaders began to roll over. A new poll released by evangelical research firm LifeWay Research in April of this year demonstrated this shift. It showed that 66 percent of American evangelicals, fundamentalists, and born-again believers say that same-sex relationships go against God’s will. While still a majority, it is a substantial decline from just three years ago, when the same poll found that 82 percent held this view. Still and all, evangelicals in the Episcopal Church (those who had not left for greener spiritual pastures like the ACNA, Ordinariate, or Rome) remained firm on Scriptural principle that there is no allowable legitimate sexual expression outside of marriage between a man and a woman. Now another sea change has occurred. The Episcopal Bishop of Central Florida and the rector of the Church of the Good Samaritan in Paoli, PA, the flagship evangelical episcopal parish in the Diocese of Pennsylvania and one its largest and most prestigious parishes, announced that they would now accommodate practicing homosexuals in “covenanted” relationships. Read here   2. See also The Bible and Same Sex Relationships: a Review Article, by Tim Keller, Redeemer Report Editor’s note: Keller writes an excellent, fair and compelling outline of the arguments of ‘evangelicals’ who are pro same-sex relationships, focussing on Vines, Matthew, God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same Sex Relationships, Convergent Books, 2014, and Wilson, Ken, A Letter to My Congregation, David Crum Media, 2014. He sets out six arguments that the revisionists make, and courteously but firmly explains why they are wrong: Knowing gay people personally – why must this change our theology? Consulting historical scholarship – did the ancients really not know about ‘equal’ same sex relationships? Re-categorizing same sex relationships – analogies between the church’s view of slavery, divorce and homosexuality do not stand up. Revising biblical authority – who has the right to determine the Bible’s meaning: today’s Christian, or the Bible itself? ‘Being on the wrong side of history’ – this comes from (wrong) Enlightenment ideas about goodness of humanity and its inevitable progress. Missing the biblical vision – revisionist thinking misunderstands or denies “Scripture’s high and glorious vision of sexuality”. As one of the world’s foremost practitioners of urban mission in Western culture, and the author of an excellent book on marriage, Keller’s views are field-tested and this article is...

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TEC: Now that we have elected Bishop Curry as Presiding Bishop — A Critique

Jul 13, 2015 by

By David W Virtue, VOL: The Rev. George Clifford is an ethicist and Priest Associate at the Church of the Nativity, Raleigh, NC. He offered up a column at Ethical Musings on his hopes, beliefs and aspirations for the Episcopal Church following the recent General Convention of The Episcopal Church. VOL believes he has misrepresented the Church, its future, and has failed to deal with the facts of TEC as it stands today. CLIFFORD: Depending upon one’s age, The Episcopal Church (TEC) today is clearly not your father or grandfather’s Church (and in those days, TEC was unmistakably male dominated). Mid-twentieth century caricatures of TEC as the Republican Party at prayer now lack credibility and power, except perhaps among a nostalgic few who yearn to return to what they believe to have been TEC’s glory days. TEC, after all, was the Church to which many of the nation’s founding fathers belonged. It’s members, in subsequent generations, frequently dominated politics and business. An independent survey conducted by VOL revealed that 62% of all churches are made up of women. VOL: The lay make-up of The Episcopal Church is still broadly conservative (when you get away from the big cities) and most Episcopalians are still Republicans, not Democrats. They basically don’t care what goes on in New York or LA or New Hampshire. They hunker down in their own enclaves and say “not in my house” when it comes to the gay issue and liberal political takes on things. They care more if their rector fits in with their world and does his duties. Most Southern Episcopalians are still broadly conservative. This was most noticeable in the recent election of an evangelical as the next Bishop of Dallas and other Texas bishops who voted against changing the canons on marriage. The South will never rise again, but they won’t vote for a Gene Robinson, either. At least 20% of the HOB voted against changing the marriage canons of the Church and that included 95% of Central America. Read here...

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Church of Uganda’s response to TEC’s General Convention and USA Supreme Court decision

Jul 7, 2015 by

From Church of Uganda website. Statement by the Most Rev. Stanley Ntagali on the recent decisions to change the definition of marriage by the United States’ Supreme Court and the Episcopal Church in the USA The decision of the Supreme Court of the United States of America to change the definition of marriage is grievous. There is a saying, “When America sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold.” As a religious leader in Uganda, I want to assure all Ugandans that we will do everything we can to promote the good moral health of our people and resist such immoral viruses that may try to infiltrate our people. Likewise, the most recent decision of the Episcopal Church USA (TEC) to change the definition of marriage is even more grievous. At best, it sprang from a desire to extend pastoral care to members of its church who experience same-sex attraction. Pastoral care, however, that is contrary to the Bible’s message is, ultimately, cruel and misleading. The Church of Uganda broke communion with the Episcopal Church USA (TEC) in 2003 when they unilaterally changed the received Biblical and moral teaching of the Anglican Communion on ordination. The Primates of the Anglican Communion unanimously agreed – including the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church – that, should TEC proceed with the consecration as Bishop of a divorced father of two living in a same-sex relationship, it would tear the fabric of the Communion at its deepest level, which is exactly what has happened over the past twelve years. In spite of TEC’s 2006 resolution that expressed their “regret” at “straining” the bonds of affection in the Anglican Communion, they have, nonetheless, continued their march toward dismantling the Christian faith and morals, culminating in their recent decision to change the definition of marriage – something that was “given by God in creation.” Read here...

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