The Supposed Letter from Bishop Minns (revised)

The letter from Bishop Minns regarding the conclusion to discussions with Bishop Lee of Virginia regarding his post as Rector of Truro Church has been posted on Titusonenine, usually an impeccable site. It is posted on VirtueOnLine as well, but without source attribution. The link for its source document on Titusonenine does not work as of midnight Friday EDT. Nor is there any notice on the Diocese of Virginia or Truro Church websites. As of the moment there is no verification of the posting on Titusonenine, and nothing else to indicate a source beyond that of "babybluecafe". When it was listed on "babybluecafe" it was with a picture of Bishop Minns and was the first posting on the blog.

What gives?

Fr. Jake is correct in saying that this solution, if true, is a gracious one. He speaks of Bishop Minns as a bishop of the church, a point that I believe honors the office even as we may criticize the position the office holder occupies.

Bishop Minns is now signing off as Bishop of CANA, indicating that he is “in charge” of this missionary effort, not simply a part of a mission presence. That he takes incursion into the Episcopal Church on behalf of the Church of Nigeria as “missionary” is of course the issue. He is plainly stating that he is part of a church (the Church of Nigeria) that believes that the Episcopal Church is heretical and not part of the Anglican Communion.

The report that Bishop Lee has licensed Bishop Minns to continue as rector of Truro Church is puzzling to me. Bishop Minns is bishop precisely because the Province in which he is ordained is no longer in communion with the Episcopal Church. To grant him license in the Diocese of Virginia is odd, to say the least.

Assuming the letter is genuine, Bishop Lee has exercised extraordinary restraint and good will. This would not be unlike him. Bishop Lee is an extraordinary person.

But why is this letter not confirmed by any source save a site called “babybluecafe”? And why doesn’t the link work anymore. And why has that report not been repeated by other reputable sources, or the semi-reputable sources, have not posted this. And why is this not posted on the Diocese of Virginia, ENS, or even CANA’s web site?

What’s going on?

I was put on to this by a reputable reporter who raised the question as to the validity of all this. Depending on the outcome I will be more than happy to give that reporter credit for the question.

But for now the question remains: Why is this letter posted only with a reference whose link no longer references the letter?

More follows.


  1. The letter was in fact posted on Virtue online Friday.

    No explanations given as to what it is.

  2. Richard III30/9/06 7:38 AM

    One would think something from Bishop Lee's office would be out or out soon if this is accurate. I don't understand the accommodation to Minns and CANA so I assume Bishop Lee knows what he's doing. Will this come back to bite him?

  3. +Minns only says that he will do no episcopal acts while in the diocese of VA. So if the letter is accurate, one would assume that he intends to do or is leaving the door open for doing episcopal acts in other dioceses while the rector of an Episcopal Church. How dishonorable.

  4. If the letter is legitamate, then Bp. Lee has implicitly agreed that, outside of Virginia, it is OK for the rector of a Virginia parish to perform episcopal actions as a repudiation of every other bishop's jurisdiction. In so doing, he has licensed a clear violation of the (to conservatives sacred) Windsor recommendations.

    I suppose, if it is true, it represents a gracioius solution within Virginia, but it is something else entire for TEC!


  5. Eh, perhaps a more accurate read on that would be that Bishop Lee has implied that enforcing the "no episcopal actions without the diocesan's permission" rule is up to each diocesan.


  6. What Jon said. +Minns has +Lee's permission to serve. Canonically correct procedure.


OK... Comments, gripes, etc welcomed, but with comment moderation but with some cautions and one rule:
Cautions: Calling people fools, idiots, etc, will be reason to bounce your comment. Keeping in mind that in the struggles it is difficult enough to try to respect opponents, we should at least try.