ISIS compiles kill list from church directory

From here:

My wife and I live in *****, ********** just north of ******* We were contacted by the FBI this week. We are on a ISIS terrorist kill list and they wanted to inform us. So is my pastor. It appears a Muslim group is trolling the internet and getting church directories and posting names for anyone to kill. Quite frightening. I have talked to the ***** *** FBI Office numerous times now and they say they do not have suspects but this appears to be a new tactic. Be diligent but go about you[r] normal life. They advised that the threat could be low – but tell that to the widows of all the slain police officers nationwide.

As for Canada, the Anglican Church of Church of Canada probably has little to worry about: ISIS is targeting Christian Churches.

Sexual discrimination in the Diocese of Niagara

Michael Bird’s latest statement on same-sex marriage informs us that he intends to adhere to this:

Accordingly, and in concert with several other bishops of the Anglican Church of Canada, it is my intention to immediately exercise this authority to respond to the sacramental needs of the LGBTQ2 community in the Diocese of Niagara. In the absence of any nationally approved liturgy, I am authorizing The Witnessing and Blessing of a Marriage and The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage 2 for use in our diocese. These newly created rites of The Episcopal Church in the United States of America may be used for the marriage of any duly qualified couples. Clergy intending to use these rites will, for the time being, be required to notify the Bishop’s Office in advance.

In practice, this means marrying two people in a “committed adult same-sex relationship”. The problem is, Bird also says he intends “to respond to the sacramental needs of the LGBTQ2 community in the Diocese of Niagara”. The rite Bird intends to use “may be used for the marriage of any duly qualified couples. Not threesomes.

The “B” in LGBQT2 represents bisexuals. In order to fulfil his – God given, Bird would claim – nature urging him to have sex with both a man and a woman, a bisexual has to marry two people.

It pains me to say it, but bisexuals will be discriminated against in the Diocese of Niagara.

The Anglican Church of Canada opens Pandora’s marriage box

In justifying his pressing ahead with same-sex marriages even when it appeared the vote to allow them failed, Michael Bird said:

In the words of David Jones, the chancellor of General Synod, our current marriage canon “does not contain either a definition of marriage or a specific prohibition against solemnizing same-sex marriage.” At the same time, it is clear that our Anglican conventions permit a diocesan bishop to exercise episcopal authority by authorizing liturgies to respond to pastoral needs within their dioceses, in the absence of any actions by this General Synod to address these realities.

So, according to its chancellor, the Anglican Church of Canada recognises no canonical definition of what marriage is or who can marry whom. Some time ago, the Diocese of Niagara used to chant this incantation at every available opportunity: “draw the circle wide, draw it wider still”; the more they chanted, the more people fled.

Now, it seems, the marriage circle has been drawn so wide that, providing there is a “pastoral need”, anyone can marry anyone – or thing.

A woman could marry a horse, a man could marry a goat, or a pillow or himself. We are assured by the ACoC chancellor that there is nothing in the canons that prevents this – so why not? Personally, I’m delighted to see that there is absolutely no prohibition against solemnising a union between a man and his guitar; none at all!

There are two ways to render something meaningless: one is to make it mean nothing, the other is to make it mean anything.

Diocese of Edmonton appoints an Environment Chaplain

From here:

Bishop Jane is pleased to appoint Sarah Ficko as Environment Chaplain. Sarah is a member of the St. Aidan’s community and St. George’s, Edmonton.

Other than supervising the diocesan Gaia worship, I’m not entirely sure what an Environment Chaplain does.

We may glean a clue from the speciality of the person who was appointed: it is saving lichens. I can only assume that Bishop Jane Alexander, having given up on – or, perhaps, being unable to see the need for – the saving of souls has turned to something easier. The saving of foliage.

The final resting place of the Anglican Church of Canada

It’s difficult to predict when and how the end will come but here is a preview of the eventual demise of the sorry mess that was once a Christian denomination.

St. Matthews Anglican Church in Quebec City has been closed since the late 1970s. Its earthly remains have been documented on a website called, by virtue of what must be a prophetic gift on the part of the owner, Lost Anglican Churches.

The “Vintage Episcopal Anglican Church Sign” that once advertised the parish can be bought as an historical curiosity on craigslist for $350:

Graig

Apparently, the church is now a library.

All this brings to mind the last scene from the original Planet of the Apes film where our hero kneels in disbelief before the Statue of Liberty buried in sand, saying something along the lines of: “you maniacs, God damn you all to Hell”.

statue_planet

What keeps conservative bishops in the Anglican Church of Canada?

After the vote that will lead to same-sex marriage in ACoC churches, seven Anglican Church of Canada bishops announced:

We believe that our General Synod has erred grievously and we publicly dissent from this decision.  Resolution A051 R2 represents a change to the sacrament of marriage inconsistent with the Scriptures and Apostolic Tradition of the Church Catholic and the Book of Common Prayer.  This would be a fundamental departure from the faith and teaching held by the majority of the Anglican Communion on the doctrine of marriage. Sadly, this complicates relationships within the Anglican Church of Canada and as a Province with the Anglican Communion.

In the same statement, they also declare their commitment to: the Anglican Church of Canada, the Anglican Communion.

Why don’t they leave the ACoC and join ANiC?

The generous answer might be that the bishops value unity, want to work for change from within and are taking a long view where the ACoC repents of its decision.

The unity answer is unconvincing because the bishops claim to be committed to both the ACoC and the Anglican Communion. They can’t be committed to unity with both since the majority of the Anglican Communion is not in unity with the ACoC: they are opposed to these recent actions. Like it or not, it’s one or the other.

Working for change from within is having no effect whatsoever and there are no signs that the ACoC will repent this side of the eschaton.

I think the reason is much simpler and conforms to Jeremiah 17:9, a verse worth bearing in mind whenever probing a person’s motives, including one’s own: if the bishops attempt to move their dioceses to ANiC, they will lose all their buildings. They are not serious enough about their objections to do that.

The canonisation of ambiguity

In every profession there are words that become overused to the point of exhaustion. In my profession, words like “interface”, “throughput” and “binary” have escaped from their original technical context and now run amok free from the confines of meaning, to be overused by people who have nothing to say.

That leads me to bishop Colin Johnson who, in gracing us with yet more of his pleonastic rambling on the recent general synod, has come up with a word destined to be overused by Anglican clerics everywhere: “ambiguity”. It is the only concrete belief left to the Anglican Church of Canada – the belief that contradictory beliefs can co-exist in the same belief system.

From here:

“The freedom of conscience in the Anglican experience is not only in superficial matters but even as we approach critical doctrinal issues – how we have understood baptism, the Eucharist, the scriptures, the outward and the inward expression of our faith.  We have a broad and messy tent.  Personally I’d like to clean it up, but I have lived long enough and I have been ordained long enough to know that such a house cleaning is more about me making the church to be what I would be comfortable with.  It usually has little to do with how God wants it to be.  The Anglican Church is an uncomfortable place for those who cannot deal with ambiguity.

More vote counting errors at General Synod

It has now emerged that Bishop Mark MacDonald was registered as a non-voting attendee so none of his votes counted during the synod. Yes, the clowns really are running the synod circus.

I know whether the marriage canon vote passed or not doesn’t really make much difference, since liberal bishops are determined to plough ahead no matter what anyone votes, says or does, but surely this latest revelation makes a mockery of the whole process and, since this could be the tip of a very ugly iceberg, invalidates every decision that was made.

Laughably, some from the ACoC turned up at the El Salvador presidential elections in 2014 to make sure everything was above-board. It would be only fair, I think, to invite Salvador Sánchez Cerén, El Salvador’s president, to return the favour and scrutinise the results of the 2019 synod.

From, here:

The National Indigenous Anglican Bishop erroneously listed as non-voting at the General Synod 2016

In the process of reviewing the list of those voting at the General Synod, it has come to my attention that, in addition to myself and the chancellor, one other voting member was wrongly listed as non-voting in the spreadsheet provided to Data-on-the-Spot. The National Indigenous Anglican Bishop, the Rt. Rev. Mark MacDonald, was erroneously listed as non-voting and I only discovered this error a number of days after the end of synod. As a result of this error, none of Bishop Mark’s votes during the synod was recorded electronically.

What we did know during the synod was that Bishop MacDonald approached the head-table following the release of voting information for the motion to revise the Marriage Canon. At this time, he informed the primate that he had voted “no”.

If Bishop Mark’s vote were to have been be registered, it would not have changed the outcome of the motion. It would have increased the number of opposed in the order of bishops from 12 to 13 total (one-third of bishops present and voting). The number of bishops in favour would still have met the legislative threshold of two-thirds.

I have spoken with and apologized personally to Bishop MacDonald, and he has been gracious and understanding. We are all deeply grateful to Bishop Mark, and to all those with whom he works, for the emerging clarity in the Indigenous Spiritual Ministry of the Anglican Church of Canada.

I will seek the advice of the Chancellor of General Synod, and present a full report of all voting issues and recommendations of any possible mitigation, to the Council of General Synod at its first meeting this fall.

The integrity of voting at General Synod has come perilously close to breaking. I am grateful to all who have helped us understand where and how that integrity was put at risk. With that information, we can both correct mistakes and, for future General Synods, learn how errors can be avoided.

Yours faithfully,

Michael Thompson, General Secretary

Why are there no calls for Michael Thompson’s resignation?

Bishops start worrying about unity after marriage canon vote

Considering dozens of parishes have left the Anglican Church of Canada since 2008, numerous dioceses and their bishops have sued parishes and individuals over property ownership and hurt feelings, and a number of high profile clergy were inhibited by their bishops, it’s about time that someone started worrying about unity. Unfortunately, since most of the bishops now wringing their hands are liberals who were – and still are –  the cause of the disunity, all this tearful posturing accomplishes is illustrate the contempt bishops have for their flocks who, they must think, will fall for it all – again.

From here:

Canadian Anglican bishops have begun to respond to General Synod’s provisional vote on same-sex marriage in starkly different ways: a number have called for prayers, some announced they will now allow religious weddings for same-sex couples and others have expressed anxiety about unity in the church.

Melissa Skelton, bishop of the diocese that set the ball rolling in our current Canadian Anglican dystopia, condescendingly implies that those who disagree with same-sex marriage, do so only because they are “not ready”, not because they have good reasons for disagreeing. The condescension continues when she asks how the ACoC can “continue to make room for their point of view in a sensitive and caring way”. I suppose it will continue as it started: conservatives will be herded into fundamentalist ecclesial ghettos, out of sight and mind; a few tame residents will occasionally be let out for good behaviour and paraded before diocesan synods as a show of inclusivity.

Bishop Melissa Skelton, of the diocese of New Westminster, said she was “relieved” by the vote, which she said gay and lesbian people would see as an affirmative step. However, she added in an interview, “In my province, and among my friends in the House of Bishops, I’m very concerned for those who feel that they’re not ready for that. How do we continue to make room for their point of view in a sensitive and caring way?”