New bishops in ACNA, new messing about in the jurisdiction of other dioceses

ACNA - The Anglican Church in North America - has been established with great tada and makes the claim to having a large bucket of bishops, some 49 bishops, retired bishops and vicars general. There will be three more come September 9th, one of them an Anglican for just six short months.

The Rev. Todd Hunter, the quickie candidate, is the founding pastor of Holy Trinity Anglican Church in Costa Mesa, California. Author of Christianity Beyond Belief, Todd is also the founding director of Churches for the Sake of Others, the West Coast church planting initiative for the Anglican Mission in the Americas.

Ordained on September 25, 1979 by John Wimber of Calvary Chapel and Vineyard Christian Fellowship, Todd was ordained as a priest in the Anglican Mission on March 23, 2009.

In a remarkably short time, from March 23 to September 9th, some six months, Tod will become bishop in the Anglican Mission in America. His election as bishops by the house of Bishops in Rwanda took place only three months after his ordination to the priesthood. Not to shabby.

The thing is, shabby shows up. The consecration of the AMIA bishops will take place in Pasadena, California on September 9th, and much of Bishop Hunter's work will be in the Diocese of California, an existing jurisdiction of the Anglican Communion. Archbishop Kolini, who has no regard for boundaries, will preside. I would suppose Archbishop Duncan will be at the gathering as well.

I don't suppose anyone has a bead on just how it is that bishop-elect Todd is steeped in Anglican theology and ethos, or how it is that he missed the part having to do with bishops holding jurisdiction.

AMiA is doing some interesting things, but very few of them have anything to do with Anglicanism, the Anglican Communion.

So, September the 9th. Yet another event that will go unnoticed by The Archbishop of Canterbury or the Anglican Communion Office. After all, AMiA is not part of the Communion, so who cares?

Perhaps the ABC should care. ACNA and its member church groups, AMiA for example, should be permanently "second tracked" for absolute disregard of the rule: Don't mess in another's back yard. Pretty soon there will be mucking about in his back yard. You can bet on it.


  1. This is simply proof positive that the new organization is a Calvinist organization, not an Anglican anything.

  2. Can we send in money and become a bishop like the ordinations from the Universal Life Church in Turlock that only charged a dollar?

    A Jewish lady attorney in my law firm has been doing biker weddings at the county park for years with her Universal Life Church ordainment.

    I would really like to trump her by becoming a bishop. I can write a check but really don't have time to do all that divinity school business and still keep up with my day job.

    San Joaquin Episcopalian

  3. Sir, do we (ALL of us) need to forget about back yards being ours? Why not let TEC have plants in London? Take St James, Picaddily...they would prefer to be in TEC than the CofE, I bet.

    I do not see the Great Commission being weaker than parish or provincial boundaries.....let TEC work in England and Rwanda, let Rwandans work in the US, let us all get on with what really matters without all the club rules which hold us back

  4. There are too damn many bishops. Just because someone lives a long life does not mean that they are qualified to be bishop -- or archbishop for that matter. One of the things that William White tried to accomplish when forming the Episcopal Church here in the US was a reduction in the effective power by bishops. There even was some discussion about whether a "bishop" was even necessary. Too bad he did not go further.
    Dear Todd, was made a bishop, not by any process acknowledged by TEC. He was elected by bishops apparently for bishops. But that by a group of thugs that is known by the misanthropic company they keep. We have deposed bishops, defrocked priests, performing sacraments that are questionable at best since they belong to a church that does not exist except in the minds of those who really miss the point behind religion and theology and ethics and justice and mercy and living a life that Christ asks us to live.

    But hey, I do not have any strong opinion on the matter.

  5. They've already been mucking about in his back yard, and thanks to the Bishop of Winchester - another C of E ACNA supporter, by the way - they got away with it. There'll be many more stories like this in the near future in dioceses whose bishops do not knuckle-under to the demands of the fundamentalist evangelical faction.

  6. The reductio ad absurdum will be that every single member will be an archbishop by the end of the century.

  7. I am reading Phyllis Tickle's The Great Emergence and all of the ordinations, and consecrations into what used to be called the Anglican Communion just goes to show that we are a church that cannot look to the past ways or even agreed upon ways of doing things. The Spirit is moving in ways we cannot even begin to understand unless we are willing to look at what happened during the Lutheran movement in the 16th century.

    If we could come back in 50 years we are not going to recognize TEC. And I think that is OK.

  8. I'm still wondering if there will be enough ACNA peasants to service all these newly minted ACNA princes of the church.

    And I wonder if they will be looking very closely at who designs their vestments.

  9. Sad and annoying, perhaps, but this is really just more of the same. Anglicanism, not unlike Orthodoxy, is headed for years of multiplicity. And while I have some hope that various groups claiming the Anglican tradition will begin once again to speak with one another (and not just about one another), I don't expect to see it. It will be work for our children.

  10. Google on "episcopi vagantes" and you'll get a number of interesting articles to look at. Generally speaking, being a member of a "continuing" church (at least if you're male) means "I'll do anything to be a bishop!") An intriguing history, of which ACNA etc. is the latest chapter. A good history of some of the earlier chapters is Peter Anson's "Bishops at Large."

  11. James,
    I am Anglican and calvinist. There's a few of us about.

  12. "Bishops at Large" is one of the great books of the 20th century ("Fashions in Church Furnishings", by the same author, is another). The illustrations of the many strange ducks who aspired to become bishops are, in themselves, worth the investment in a copy.

  13. Obadiah, you're a Calvinist? (Don't fuss, anyone - he's laughing with me).

  14. Lynn, if you want to be precise I am an Amyraldian. Its a milder form of Calvinism, held by many here in the Diocese of Sydney.
    There are many Calvinist Anglicans, but I am not playing a numbers game, just pointing out that we are here, too.
    At its simplest, Calvinist or reformed christians believe that God had to reach out to us, before we could reach out to him.

  15. obadiahslope said...

    "At its simplest, Calvinist or reformed christians believe that God had to reach out to us, before we could reach out to him."

    As a moderate/liberal Episcopal priest of 38 years, I have believed the same thing and preach that on a regular basis. I suspect most of us in this "wing" believe and preach this Gospel. That's the whole reason for the Incarnation, a key orthodox belief of Anglicanism and a gift to the larger church.

    So what is the problem?

    Jim of Lower/Slower Delaware

  16. Well, Ob, what do you think of this explanation of your views?

  17. Its a good illustration of how some christians like to argue at length isn't it? I thought I would never see Amyeraldianism and the Synod of Dort discussed on Preludium but here we are.
    That Christ's death was "Sufficient for all and effective for some" as Dort suggests unites Calvinists and Amyralidians. Where we might differ is on verses like 2 Pet. 2:1 which condemns some as some denying Christ "the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction."

  18. obadiah slope: I too am overjoyed that at last on Preludium the Synod of Dort has made the comments section. I am quietly proud.

  19. David said...

    In the UK there are already, effectively, Bishops with overlapping jurisdiction because the Church, recognizing the Christian integrity of their beliefs, already made adequate provision for Anglicans and churches that could not accept women priests..

    That meant more than just saying that "sexists can abstain when a woman presides", it meant acknowledging that the Church for the best part of 2000 years had insisted on one practice, and honouring that - even though most disagreed with it in current culture. After all, Anglican churches have no right to insist on anything that cannot be proved by Holy Scripture.

    Neither are Anglican churches free to ignore those biblical commandments known as "moral".. TEC has failed to do it's biblical theology (maybe because the outcome would not be the "right" one) and seems to have relied on an mixture of: 1. dubious claims about equality (but isn't EVERYONE equal, good or bad?! Being equal does not mean that you are right.. or that what you desire can be blessed) and 2. pop arguments about mixed clothes, prawns and bank interest that no half serious theological scholar couldn't deal with in a couple of minutes.

    But this is serious because, as Barth remarked, heteropraxy is just the outworking of heterodoxy... It is practical heresy. And heretical bishops loose their Sees; there is nothing new about that. If the church can't depose them, it will progressively ignore them.

  20. A profusion of words, Anonymous David, which all means the same thing:

    You have no effective argument that can convince, so you lie, spreading the same tired obfuscations, misrepresentations and willful "misunderstandings" common to your kind.

    Spread it somewhere else, lad, the audience here knows how the trick is done.


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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.