OK, kiddo! Here are all the fantastically amazing posts tagged with Anglicans
The Anglican Church in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island approved a motion last week that would allow for individual churches to bless same-sex couples.
The Anglican Church offers blessings for various things, including weddings, births, graduations, and even inanimate objects like boats and pets, but until now same-sex couples had been an issue of particular contention.
I’m happy that gay couples have advanced to the same level of respect as Rover and the H.M.S. Slapafore within the Anglican hierarchy, but it sure took a lot of kicking and screaming to get there. At least one participant in the vote was reported to have become so distraught with the results as to have fled the scene entirely.
Still, I take this as a good sign that things are moving forward, even within the religious community. Why, at this rate, the Catholic Church will be offering same-sex blessings in only several hundred thousand decades!
- Same-sex blessing passes [Chronicle Herald]
Gene Robinson, the world’s first openly gay bishop in the Anglican Communion, has announced that he will be leaving his post after seven years in service.
The Episcopal Church elected Robinson the Bishop of New Hampshire in 2003, making history in the process. During his term, Robinson served the church splendidly, elevating religion to a higher standard of the love and respect it’s meant to teach.
It hasn’t been easy, though. Members of the Anglican church have been sharply divided on having gay clergy members. When Robinson was consecrated, he wore a bulletproof vest. He has received numerous death threats, requires extra security, and became a symbolic focus point of an increasingly noncivil campaign from conservatives within the church. With a split of the Anglican church nearly inevitable, the job became too much to bear.
“The last seven years have taken their toll on my, my family, and you,” Robinson wrote in a letter to the yearly diocean convention. “Death threats, and the now worldwide controversy surrounding your election of me as bishop have been a constant strain, not just on me, but on my beloved husband, Mark.” The letter was Robinson’s announcement that he will be stepping down from him position in 2013.
This isn’t to be considered a victory by those motivated by hate. Robinson was threatened and bullied as a 63 year old bishop, but stood up and served for seven years despite these threats. While he is stepping down, his legacy is continuing. The Anglicans have already elected a lesbian as an assistant Bishop back in May, and there will be others.
Thank you, Gene Robinson. I wish you the very best.
- First openly gay bishop to retire after strain of backlash [Digital Journal]
Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has warned that gay blessings and the ordination of women in the Anglican church had caused “chaos.”
“Fellowship,” Williams said, “is strained or shattered and trust destroyed.”
The Archbishop began to explain further, but then the world ended before he could finish.
- Anglican head warns of ‘chaos’ over gays and women [Montréal Gazette]
An amusingly bizarre rift over same-sex blessings in the Anglican Church has felt its latest tremor after a court decision late last month.
Harnessing the healing power of embittered legal conflict, four Anglican parishes sued the Diocese in May over a property battle stemming from a disagreement about same-sex blessings and other differences of very, very little significance. (The lawsuit was heartily endorsed by Jesus himself, purportedly.)
Well, now the court has reached its verdict. The land and buildings claimed by St. John’s Shaughnessy, St. Matthew’s, St. Matthias, and St. Luke’s parishes are rightfully the property of the Diocese, and the breakaway parishes can not seize them for themselves.
Having settled the property dispute, all sides have now decided to put their disagreements behind them and rejoin, strengthened by a renewed commitment to sheltering the homeless, feeding the hungry, and offering comfort to the less fortunate…
Hahaha! Ah, I’m just pulling your leg. They’re totally still exchanging petty insults and stuff.
As far as religions go, I suppose you could do worse than the Anglicans. They at least entertain discussions about how to best integrate their doctrine with reality. They bless gay couples, for example, and extend to them the same dignities as any other parishioner—including eligibility for ordination.
Of course, all this love and tolerance doesn’t sit too well with churchgoers who miss the unity that only old-fashioned judgment and condemnation can bring. Priests and bishops have split, some have been fired, the locks on church doors have been changed to keep out congregations with differing perspectives—they’ve even started suing each other. Yet, all this kicking and moaning hasn’t stopped the church from trying to stay as relevant as it can. What are bitter coots to do?
Well, the Vatican has a proposal: Join the Catholic Church! Be as rabidly anti-gay as you like! Heck, they’ll even overlook the events that caused the Anglicans to split from Catholicism in the first place (it was a disagreement over King Henry VIII’s denied divorce in 1534, for what it’s worth) and recognize differing Anglican traditions by creating a new legal entity.
Aw, isn’t that just the most adorablest thing ever? There’s just nothing like a common dislike of us gays to mend a 475 year old religious rift.
- Catholic Church reaches out to Anglicans [CBC News]
Same-sex blessings have been the epicentre of a bizarrely deep rift in the Anglican Church. Now the divisive issue has culminated in.. well, in pretty much the same way as all ridiculous issues: A court case.
Yes, the Anglicans are suing each other, as four parishes in British Columbia (St. John’s Shaughnessy, St. Matthew’s, St. Matthias and St. Luke’s, and the Church of the Good Shepherd) are scheduled to meet the Diocese of New Westminster in court next week over the ownership of four Anglican church buildings.
The Diocese locked out the parishes from their churches last year over disagreements about same-sex blessings, the appointment of a gay bishop, and other absurdly small differences in doctrine.
While both sides lament that it has come to this, they had failed to reach an agreement through a mutually selected, third-party mediator: Jesus.
- Vancouver Anglicans go to court [Canadian Christianity]
The proposed law, delivered to a parliamentary committee this week, would incarcerate gay couples who get married for five years, as well as any witnesses to the ceremony for one year.
Well… Someone’s awfully cranky.
Many governments worldwide are actively homophobic, but jailing well-wishers who simply attend a gay wedding would, essentially, make it illegal not to be homophobic.
But perhaps there’ll be nothing to worry about. As James points out, the proposed law would be entirely moot—at least, according to the government. Just last month, Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs declared that an exhaustive, country-wide search for gays and lesbians had been carried out and that they “could not come across any Nigerian with such sexuality.”
The Traditional Anglican Communion, a group of Anglicans who abandoned the global Anglican church over same-sex blessings and the ordination of women, has decided to go back to their very early roots and re-join the Roman Catholic Church, if The Vatican will let them.
Anglicans spit from Rome in 1534 over their refusal to annul the marriage of King Henry VIII. Nothing like a common dislike of the gays to mend a 475-year old rift, huh?
- Traditional Anglican Communion wants to join Catholic Church [Daily Gleaner]
The gravely divided Anglican church is super interesting for some reason. The issue of same-sex blessings, of all things, has become the epicentre of a massive fracture, and their attempts to stay united has led to some of the most bizarre declarations I’ve heard from any religion.
Why, just in June, 2007, Canadian Anglican leaders congregated to discuss what to do about same-sex blessings and their divided church. After intense debate, they officially declared that same-sex unions are perfectly compatible with the core doctrine of the church. Hours later, they voted to forbid the blessing of same-sex couples.
Since then, several of Canada’s Anglican diocese have broken ranks with the church to bless same-sex parishioners. Toronto Anglicans are now about to join the Ottawa and Montréal diocese in allowing the blessing of same-sex couples. (And, just to be clear, we’re just talking about blessings here; not even marriage.)
But the church is in pretty rough shape. Priests have been fired, churches have split—with some opting to become part of the Anglican community located in the province of Southern Cone, South America. They’ve even barred some of their own bishops from attending conferences, all due to same-sex blessings.
From their actions, though, it seems they can all agree on at least one thing: This is definitely the best use of their resources. You know, instead of things like, oh… Housing the poor, tending to the sick, etcetera, etcetera…
- Toronto bishops propose process to allow same-sex blessings [Anglican Journal]
Four more churches have voted to break from the Anglican Church of Canada over division on whether gay parishoners should receive blessings.
The Anglican Church is in tatters due to in-fighting over doctrine, with gay blessings being the centrepiece issue. Fourteen congregations have left so far.
Ah, another disagreement over what God wants. If history serves as any indication, I think this will all be resolved quickly through a happy consensus with much rejoicing and merriment…
- Four more churches vote to leave [Anglican Journal]
Worldwide Anglican bishops have ended their once-a-decade conference with a “wide agreement” on implementing a moratorium on gay blessings. In a statement, Anglican Leader Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams said that non-acceptance of the moratorium would put the entire church in “grave peril.”
(As an off-topic interjection, nominees for this year’s Enjoyable Hyperbole Awards will be announced shortly. Stay tuned!)
The issue of same-sex blessings has deeply divided the Anglican community, which genuinely appears on the brink of separation. Progressive churches say that the bible has never condemned or forbid loving, monogamous, same-sex unions, and the overwhelming message of love instructs them to bless all parishioners without judgement. Conservative factions disagree, particularly within the international Anglican community.
The rift has been controversial, to understate the matter. Over 200 bishops have boycotted the conference, and one gay bishop was barred from attending. Both sides did appear to agree to lay off the rhetoric, though. In a joint statement, the bishops announced that “we need to repent of statements and actions that have further damaged the dignity of homosexual persons.” The church then imploded from the contradiction.
- Bishops end conference with ‘wide agreement’ on moratoria for same-sex blessings [Anglican Journal]
- Anglican leader urges ban on gay bishops [Globe and Mail]
The Lambeth Conference meeting of Anglican bishops, a once-a-decade event in the worldwide Anglican community, has banned one of their own Bishops, Gene Robinson, from attending because he is gay.
Robinson is the first openly gay U.S. Episcopal bishop. While his appointment was controversial within the Anglican community, he is decidedly a bishop. His banning has prompted an appeal from Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who called it a mistake to disinvite Robinson, and pleaded with the Anglican community to unite itself.
Conference organizers justified Robinson’s ban by saying his invitation would have become the focus of the event.
- Tutu appeals for Anglican unity as gay bishop shut out [Canada.com]
- Excluded from key church conference, gay Episcopal bishop goes anyway [The Northern Light]
In my web travels I often collect stories that I intend to share, but then become distracted by newer, shinier stories—or feel too lazy to illustrate them. This is what becomes of those stories: A Pile o’ Sla… Hugs?
The Town of Truro, Nova Scotia—which made national news last year after some bizarre homophobic comments by its mayor—has finally reached an agreement with a local gay rights group, amending its employment equity policy to include sexual orientation. A strange outcome, considering the dispute was over a flag-flying policy.
For the first time ever, Canada’s Armed Forces marched in Toronto’s Gay Pride parade, promoting equal rights and openly recruiting gay servicemen and women. This is in stark contrast to the policies of the United States. I’d ask if you’d like me to describe them, but I’m afraid I can’t tell.
A nation-wide poll shows that support for same-sex marriage in Canada has climbed to 68%. Recent converts cited a lack of family-destroying meteor showers for their change in opinion.
The top leader of Canada’s Anglican Church is standing up for gay-friendly denominations in the country, saying that ultra-conservative factions are obsessing over the wrong issues. Primate Fred Hiltz said it’s unfortunate that some Christians are “preoccupied with sexual acts between homosexuals and falsely equate homosexuality with promiscuity,” adding that they’d gain more credibility on sexual issues if they devoted the same energy to “combating sexual abuse, sexual exploitation by people in positions of power, and global sex slavery.” Hmm… Combating something that everyone agrees needs combating; what a novel concept!
Same-sex marriages skyrocketed last month, as gay couples plan their weddings around Pride celebrations. Because if it weren’t for that, no one would want a June wedding.
Well, have a great weekend kiddos, and Happy Independance Day to all my Stateside visitors. May it be nothing like the movie.
Conservative leaders of the Anglican church have resolved to create their own council of bishops to separate themselves symbolically from more progressive congregations. Their central issue: gay blessings.
The group issued a press release yesterday attacking any interpretation of the bible different from their own, calling such interpretations a “false gospel”:
This false gospel undermines the authority of God’s Word. […] It promotes a variety of sexual preferences and immoral behavior as a universal human right. It claims God’s blessing for same-sex unions over against the biblical teaching on holy matrimony. This false gospel led to the consecration of a bishop living in a homosexual relationship.
Progressive churches claim that loving, monogamous, same-sex unions were never condemned by the bible, and that the gospel’s overwhelming message of love despite our differences instructs them to welcome and bless gay parishioners.
Knowing how arguments about what God wants usually turn out, I think this thing should resolve itself fairly quickly, no?
If you’re a regular of this site, you’ve no doubt noticed the bizarre rift that has emerged in the Canadian Anglican community over gay parishioners. Churches have split, priests have been fired, bishops have fled, discussions have amounted to meaningless decrees, and everything is generally all going to hell in a hand basket—and all because the church just can’t decide whether or not God would bless gay couples.
What’s a hierarchy to do?
To an observer, the church looks completely fatigued of this issue and, perhaps amusingly, is now resorting to the sort of tactics typical of high school dramas. Just recently, a British Columbian congregation had its locks changed and dissenting worshipers were locked out. This week, a bishop who fled in disgust over gay blessings is ignoring warnings to stay out of Canada. It’s all very, very strange.
I don’t have any solutions; If history has taught me anything, it’s that people will argue forever over what they think their God thinks. But I do find it strange that it’s the blessing of gay parishioners that’s causing all this ruckus. The Anglican church will bless, upon request, heterosexual couples, births, homes, boats, and even pets.
It’s weird, really. Surely treating gay people as sinners who require punishment in the form of blessing withholdings so that they’ll turn straight hasn’t really worked out, and now it not only contradicts scientific understanding of homosexuality, but also the church’s own declaration that blessing gay parishioners is compatible with core church doctrine. The childishness can’t really be necessary, right?
Then again, I’m not Anglican.
- Archibishop against gay unions ignores plea to stay out of Canada [Vancouver Sun]
- Anglicans lock rebel clergy out of parish [Times Colonist]
In my web travels, I often collect stories that I intend to share, but then become distracted by newer, shinier stories—or feel too lazy to illustrate them. This is what becomes of those stories: a Pile o’ Slaps!
Dr. Brent Hawkes, a Toronto pastor and gay rights activist, has received the prestigious Order of Canada in recognition of his fight toward equal rights for gay people. I shall start the betting odds at 946341:¾ that an anti-gay lobbyist will burst a capillary over this within a week.
The rift between Canadian Anglicans is continuing to grow. A Vancouver congregation has voted to leave the country in favour of The Province of the Southern Cone in South America, which does not think of gay people as favourably. Authorities in The Province of the Southern Cone expressed overwhelming gratitude toward the Vancouver church for knowing that The Province of the Southern Cone exists.
The gay-targeting zombie lynch mobs in Jamaica are finally getting some media attention thanks in part to Gareth Henry’s fight to stay in Canada. A New York Times feature on Jamaica describes some of the horror. (Hat tip to Montreal Simon)
Speaking of Canadian Refugees, Capital Xtra has an excellent article outlining the frustrating process that refugee claimants must go through to prove they’re gay after years of effort to hide their sexuality in their home country. It’s a great lesson for future refugees: If you truly desire to protect yourself, put yourself in as much visible danger as possible.
A sports photographer has angered and confused Kentuckians after a newspaper published a photo of two male basketball players hugging in celebration of their victory. Columnist Pam Platt, in a display of common sense, offers no apology to the scores of offended readers, who will move on to picket the guy that accidentally brushed up against them on the public transit.
In my web travels, I often come across stories that I intend to share, but then become distracted by newer, shinier stories—or feel too lazy to illustrate them in any meaningful or interesting way. Well, no more! Today, I present to you the first-ever Pile o’ Slaps! (i.e., really old stories that I’d otherwise just delete out of my queue.)
Canadian Anglicans have appealed to the Archbishop of Canterbury to sternly lecture the runaway parishes that evacuated the country over same-sex blessings. It seems that some of these parishes are continuing to minister in Canada remotely from somewhat more exotic locations without all those pesky equal marriage rights.
U.S. Soldiers, presumably fatigued by the war in Iraq, are asking and telling a lot more these days, as army deserters are at their highest level since 1980. Unlike Canada and—well, pretty much every other well-off nation with a military—gays in the U.S. are forbidden to serve in the army openly. What’s that slogan, again? Repress All That You Can Be?
The federal Tories have refused to investigate homophobic abuse within the RCMP, despite calls from the opposition to do so. That’s pretty much in line with their stance of a tougher police force, mind you.
Documentary filmmaker Michael Moore has hinted that his next film may be about gay rights in the states. The film will purportedly outline all of the civil rights that gays have won in the U.S. since the Stonewall days, giving it a runtime of about one-and-a-half minutes.
Singapore has banned Mass Effect, an XBox 360 game, over lesbian intimacy between two aliens. Due to the ban, 14-year-old Singaporean boys will now have to use a different Microsoft product to access their intimacy depictions.
OK, enough of that. Until Friday, kiddos!
Two more parishes have split from the Canadian Anglican Church over same-sex blessings. The churches will now serve under an orthodox Argentinian archibishop who wholeheartedly opposes blessings for gay couples.
Reverend Archie Pell, a member of one of the breakaway congregations, was ecstatic over the move:
We are thrilled to be embraced by a God-fearing Province that allows us to remain fully Anglican and fully in communion with the worldwide Anglican Church. We no longer have to feel alone.
Alone… You mean like the gay people of faith who no longer have a place at your parish, Reverend?
Montréal and Niagara are the two latest Anglican churches to approve the blessing of same-sex couples within the past month, defying a national decree to disallow such blessings.
The Canadian Anglican Church decided in June that same-sex blessings are compatible with core church doctrine, but decreed that they be banned anyway. This mixed message has caused a bizarre rift in the church, with several priests being ejected for blessing couples. That may sound a little drastic, but I’m assured that there’s nothing quite like blessing a loving couple within the parish community to undermine years of goodwill, charity, and other selfless services to the Church.
- Niagara Diocese Approves Blessings For Gay Couples [Anglican Journal]
- Montreal Anglicans vote to bless same-sex union [Globe and Mail]
Don Harvey, an Anglican bishop, has become so distraught over gays being able to marry in Canada that he has decamped the country entirely. His destination: Southern Cone, a province in South America where gay rights are presumably unlikely to advance for several hundred dozen fiscal years.
Oh Don, whatever shall we do without you?
In related news, a choleric 7-year-old from Manitoba has run away from home after her parents insisted she eat her vegetables.
Ottawa Anglicans have voted to allow priests to approach the bishop to request that they can bless same-sex couples.
(I’ll wait if you need to re-read that.)
This clear and decisive baby step passed by a vote of 177 to 97 on Saturday, making Ottawa Anglicans the first in Canada to not officially forbid same-sex blessings. A national meeting over the summer decided that blessing same-sex couples was not against core church doctrine, but that such blessings should be banned. Blessings that are allowed nationally include heterosexual unions, births, houses, boats, and pets.
- Ottawa Anglicans approve same-sex marriages in vote [Canada.com]
Despite last month’s decision by the Anglican Church to ban same-sex blessings, several brave churches are going ahead with the practice anyway.
Toronto’s Holy Trinity Church and Victoria’s St. Saviour’s Church have both declared their intentions to continue to bless same-sex couples against the rules of the national church, the latter saying that they even plan to full-out marry gay couples should the opportunity arise.
Of course, the hierarchy isn’t too happy. A senior Anglican official, under the protection of anonymity, said priests will be disciplined if they are too liberal with their blessings. And I think they mean business: Antonio Osorio, an Anglican priest, was issued a warning this month after blessing four same-sex couples, even though the blessing was simply a general blessing of members of the community. In the past year, two Anglican priests have even been ejected over the practice.
- Churches to defy same-sex ban [CBC News]
- Anglican priests set to defy same-sex blessing ban [Canada.com]
The Canadian Anglican Church has decreed that the blessing of same-sex unions is perfectly compatible with their core doctrine. Hours later, they forbid the blessing of same-sex unions.
With these votes, gay Anglicans have been sent a clear and decisive message: Your church thinks your relationships are worthy of their full blessing, but they, uh, just don’t feel like doing it right now.
Canadian Anglicans had spent months preparing for this decision, during which time the global Anglican community issued an ultimatum threatening to shut down “errant” churches. (I think the official wording was something like: “Stop blessing gays or there’ll be no church for anyone!”) While several Anglican denominations supported gay blessings, yesterday’s vote means they won’t be able to continue the practice.
Scott Tribe writes in with an interesting story: The U.S. Episcopal Church has voted to face expulsion from the Anglican hierarchy rather than reject gay rights. The Anglican Church issued an ultimatum in February for what it called “errant” churches, which support gay clergy and bless same-sex marriages.
The Canadian Anglicans are expected to vote to let each parish decide whether or not to accept or reject the ultimatum in June. Retired archbishop Terrance Finlay, who was suspended in October for officiating over a gay wedding, encouraged the church to follow the U.S. example:
Be willing to risk the cause of love over institutionalism.
- Gay rights, church’s ‘defining moment’ [Toronto Star]