11/06/2009

The Living Church headline bias clear.

The Living Church, which has undergone some useful changes with its new executive Christopher Wells in the chair. But the writer of the headlines still seems not to get it. That persons gives us false information and clear bias. The headline proclaims "Former TEC Dioceses Welcome Congregations." However, the entities in question are not the "former dioceses" of anything. They are entities made up of people and bishops from dioceses of The Episcopal Church who have left, formed new dioceses related to other Provinces of the Anglican Communion or the new Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) and are now welcoming congregations.

The TEC Dioceses still exist and still conform to the understanding that a diocese is a jurisdiction with particular boundaries and consists of those churches related to TEC within those boundaries.

The new dioceses forming ACNA do not operate with that sense of geographical connection and there is already some sense that the bishops of these dioceses will have jurisdictional responsibility only to the particular parishes, clergy and people that sign up to join that diocese. There will be no sense that, say, the ACNA bishop of Pittsburgh, will have any sense of a pastoral charge to Pittsburgh or to the region around Pittsburgh. Similarly the Anglican Mission in the Americas (AMiA) will have no particular local jurisdiction but rather a jurisdiction made up of parishes scattered throughout a region of the United States.

The notion of the diocese grounded in specific cities and adjacent lands is by ACNA cast aside. One of the odd results is that in a particular city there might be one parish that is related to CANA (Convocation of Anglicans in North America), one related to AMiA, one part of the diocese formed in the area by those who left the Episcopal Church diocese, and one related to a diocese elsewhere in the ACNA family. Each of these churches could have different locations for their ecclesial oversight. And because each group has a different flavor, sense of what is right and honorable, etc, the end result could be fragmentation and dashed hopes for any sort of episcopal stability. The clergy of these four groups might all work together with some grace. On the other hand they might not.

The entities that the Living Church is reporting on are not dioceses in the traditional sense at all, nor are they the "former" dioceses of TEC. They are a new thing. It remains to see if they are vainly invented.

5 comments:

  1. I know it's a coward's way out, but I finally gave up on TLC... their bias just makes me angry.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Fr. Craig, I did the same..... When my subscription ended I did not renew. TLC has such bias and it makes me angry, too!
    Brent

    ReplyDelete
  3. Because these "new" entities really have no connection with TEC, continued "news coverage" is not necessary in TEC publications. They too have walked away and I for one, have no desire to hear more about their story.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Isn't amazing that a publication that calls itself "The Living Church" is so committed to turning back the clock to the 1950s church. Let's just call them what they are: the FOX network for the Rebellion against TEC.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I sent the following to TLC yesterday: To the editor:

    Having read your article on the missionary work of Dr. Barfoot, I wanted to remind
    your readers that her work has been going on some time and she was the author of the off-shore strategy used to ultimately form the ACNA and revealed in the discovery process of the Calvary Piutsburgh lawsuit A .pdf of here draft overseas strategy can be found here: http://www.thinkinganglicans.org.uk/overseasAEO.pdf

    Given that TLC's mission statement reflects a high church tradition within TEC, I wondered if Ms. Barfoot's work meshes with that mission and if so, how?

    TLC does have a difficult row to hoe but I think it really needs to examine what it wants to be. EmilyH

    ReplyDelete

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.
Rule: PLEASE DO NOT SIGN OFF AS ANONYMOUS: BEGIN OR END THE MESSAGE WITH A NAME - ANY NAME. ANONYMOUS commentary will be cut.