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Author Topic: Help me to understand Anglicanism  (Read 20288 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: November 17, 2007, 07:21:51 PM »

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Forgive me for my ignorance, but I've always looked at the Anglican church as an offshoot of the corrupt Catholic Church. Unfortunately, two wrongs dont necassarily make a right. But I also know that the formation of the Anglican Church resulted from a marital divorce, or SOMEWHERE along those lines. The Pope would not allow the King to divorce his wife who could not conceive, so the Church of England was formed?? One again, dont shoot me for my blindness, but help me see. I Have tremendous respect for protestantism/anglicanism, but there are some things I struggle to understand.
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« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2007, 09:48:12 PM »

Henry VIII wanted a heir for succession, but appeared unable to achieve one with his wife, Catherine of Aragon.  So, since it was seen as the woman's fault, he wanted an annulment under the grounds that he married his brother's widow (which he did) and that was technically grounds.  He appealed to the Pope, Clement VII, for it.  Now, Catherine obviously did not want Henry to leave her for his mistress, Anne Boleyn.  The Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire was Charles V and he was her nephew.  Charles pressured the Pope not to allow it, and he did refuse to grant the annulment.  Boleyn had protestant leanings, and Cromwell and Archbishop Cranmer (important statesmen in the English court) were becoming more and more sympathetic to it.  Cromwell was chief advisor and proposed to Henry to abolish Roman rule and for Henry to become the head of the Church of England.  Henry secretly wed Anne and parliament passed the Statute in Restraint of Appeals (no appeals to Rome were allowed now).  Archbishop Cranmer declared Henry's first marrige invalid and his marriage to Anne to be valid.  Act of Succession reinforced this.  Anne was crowned Queen and Henry was excommunicated by Rome.  The Ecclesiastical Appointments Act, Act of Supremacy, and Treasons Act were passed.  Now, elected Bishops were from a pool nominated  by the King, the King was the Head of the Church, and it was high treason to reject this.  Practices stayed mostly 'Roman' for Henry's rule, then more protestant under Edward's, then Roman Catholic under Mary, and sort of Anglo-Catholic under Elizabeth.

That was an extremely brief version of the story.  Backroom deals and politics, plus the popularity of protestantism also had major roles.
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« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2007, 10:09:58 PM »

Although the "origin" of the Anglican church seems to be a reason to write it off it is not. The Anglican church is an honest attempt to find a medium between the early church and the Protestant reformation. It is a beautiful church with many Holy men and woman serving the lord in there own way. The church unlike many Protestants have wide-ranging opinions on important matter for example the Eucharist some believe it to truly be the blood and body of Christ other believe it to only be a memorial. The high church Anglican's are closer to Orthodox then the Catholics are (this is personally what I believe) and that their practices are not significantly different.
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« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2007, 02:18:11 PM »

First, I would say, in fairness, that not all aspects of the RC were corrupt in the early 1500's nor are is that the case today. 

Now on to the Anglicans.   Friul has laid out some of the basics.  First off, this was not a break due to differences of Belief. Nor was it a mere case of "Henry VIII wanted fun with a new woman".  There is a great deal of history and politics involved.  Henry's father had become king following the Wars of the Roses (the houses of Lancaster and York contesting for power) as Henry VII.  He had 2 sons, Arthur and Henry, as well as daughters. But it was the male heir that was crucial in continuing the family line and rule.  Arthur was the oldest and heir to the throne.  Marriages were made to secure alliances, so Arthur was betrothed to Catherine of Aragon a daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella.  She eventually came to England and the two were married in November 1501 when Arthur was 15.  He died in April 1502. That made Henry the second son the new heir. 

In order for Henry to marry Catherine the Pope had to give a "dispensation" permitting it since she had been his brother's wife for about 6 months (recall Biblical restrictions on marriage).  So in some sense, the marriage was already outside the usual bounds.  Now the point of getting a male heir:  all of Catherine and Henry's children died before adulthood except Mary (later Mary I, aka "Bloody" Mary), so no sons.  One question was "Was the lack of sons due to God not approving of the not-quite-regular circumstances of the marriage?  The Tudor line was still relatively new to the throne and there was plenty of English history that involved struggles for control (Wars of the Roses, the Matilda/Steven civil wars of the early 12th century (think the time of the "Cadfael" mysteries), Richard II etc.) so it was politically vital to have male heirs.

Henry wanted/needed a *legitmate* son. He had illegitimate sons and daughters so he knew that he could father boys and the conclusion was that it was his irregular marriage to Catherine that was the problem. He asked for an annullment so that he could marry "properly", in accordance with what was supposed to happen.  This was not a new idea.  There are many cases of royalty and nobility having divorces or annullments granted by the Pope.  I've listed some in other threads here iirc, so if desired I can find examples to back up this idea.  But the then Pope, Clement VII, was a virtual prisoner of Catherine's nephew, Charles V the Holy Roman Emperor who had taken control of Rome.  So to support his aunt, Charles had influence over the Pope to keep Henry from getting his annullment. 

So some questions were "Who would succeed Henry?"  "Who would rule England, an  Englishman or a "foreigner"?  "Who would hold secular power over England, the King or the Pope/Charles V?" "Could other powers then make England a subject country?"  To get the marriage annulled required an ecclesiastical ruling and if not from the Pope, then from the Primate of England, the Archbishop of Canterbury.  Henry did not want to stop being Christian, but to have an independent (Autocephalous?) English Church. 

Before people's eyes glaze over, it's time for a 'tea break'  Wink  Does that help and should I continue?

Ebor

edited to correct spelling
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« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2007, 02:57:48 PM »

Wow!  I certainly learned quite a bit; thanks Ebor.  (Eh, you're not going to quiz us on this are you? Wink)
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« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2007, 04:53:38 PM »

 Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy

No, no quiz.  Just don't ever say something like "The Anglican/Episcopal Church is based on divorce and a promiscuous king." or something like that.   Wink


Ebor
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« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2007, 04:58:06 PM »

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Forgive me for my ignorance, but I've always looked at the Anglican church as an offshoot of the corrupt Catholic Church. Unfortunately, two wrongs dont necassarily make a right. But I also know that the formation of the Anglican Church resulted from a marital divorce, or SOMEWHERE along those lines. The Pope would not allow the King to divorce his wife who could not conceive, so the Church of England was formed?? One again, dont shoot me for my blindness, but help me see. I Have tremendous respect for protestantism/anglicanism, but there are some things I struggle to understand.

Not knowing about something isn't "blindness" and you were asking for information, for knowledge which is a Good Thing.  I don't think anyone could 'shoot' you for asking questions.  Smiley 

Please feel free to ask more if I am not clear or there is something you would like to know more about.

Ebor
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« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2007, 05:05:13 PM »

Something that I forgot to put in above was that Henry, being the second son, had been educated with a possible eye to joining the clergy.  That was a fairly common pattern in English history: Oldest son inherits the title, lands, etc.  Second son (while kept in reserve as it were, early mortality being what it was) looks to some other path or career in the Church or Law or the like.  So Henry was well versed in Christian thought and literature as well as the arts and other subjects.  According to some of my reading, a possible path for him was planned that he would become the ABC (Archbishop of Canterbury) eventually while his brother ruled England. 

Ebor
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« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2007, 06:19:24 PM »

Something that I forgot to put in above was that Henry, being the second son, had been educated with a possible eye to joining the clergy.  That was a fairly common pattern in English history: Oldest son inherits the title, lands, etc.  Second son (while kept in reserve as it were, early mortality being what it was) looks to some other path or career in the Church or Law or the like.  So Henry was well versed in Christian thought and literature as well as the arts and other subjects.  According to some of my reading, a possible path for him was planned that he would become the ABC (Archbishop of Canterbury) eventually while his brother ruled England. 

Ebor

I didn't know that... Very interesting.
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« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2007, 06:17:20 PM »

ALL HAIL HER MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH II THE SUPREME GOVERNOR OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND!!!

 Roll Eyes  Roll Eyes  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2007, 09:34:26 PM »

ALL HAIL HER MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH II THE SUPREME GOVERNOR OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND!!!

I believe the correct acclamation is "God save Her Majesty."
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« Reply #11 on: November 20, 2007, 10:27:13 PM »

I really really really like John Wesley.... I understand he was an Anglican Pastor and the founder of Methodism. I really like reading his works. Very cool stuff!

Sorry for dropping in with my John Wesley plug but my brother was named after him too...  laugh
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« Reply #12 on: November 21, 2007, 07:47:13 AM »

Ebor,

Thanks for your replies.  The whole Henry VIII thing makes more sense to me now.

But my question to you is about Real Presence.  One of the reasons I no longer
consider myself a Protestant has to do with RP.  The Anglican position on it seems
strange to me.  It seems to me that some Anglicans believe the Eucharist to be
RP and some don't . . . and that's okay.

I believe in RP, but I may have (not quite sure) more respect for the no RP
position than this middle position.  At least the no RP position is consistent
(except, of course, for the part when a man of the cloth says to you "This
is the body of Christ" and doesn't believe that it is).

The Anglican position seems to be that whether or not the Eucharist is RP is up
to the communicant.  That gives the communicant the power to decide
whether this bread/wine is the body/blood of Christ, which IMHO borders
on magical.



And Ebor, as one of a handful of Orthodox posters on a fundamentalist
board, I can definitely relate to your status as a minority on a board!


Respectfully submitted.

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« Reply #13 on: November 21, 2007, 02:38:38 PM »

I would add that the real establishment and consolidation of the Church of England as we know it (ahem . . . at least as we knew it until recently) was under Elizabeth I's 45-year reign (1558-1603). It is usually called the Elizabethan Religious Settlement (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabethan_Religious_Settlement). England could have gone either way before Elizabeth.

Henry VIII was not a "Protestant"---in fact, he burnt subjects espousing typical Protestant theological beliefs. His issue was supremacy, not theology. (Elizabeth was also very conservative, BTW---high-church, pro-vestments, traditional theology, prejudiced against married clergy.)
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« Reply #14 on: November 21, 2007, 03:37:49 PM »

I really really really like John Wesley.... I understand he was an Anglican Pastor and the founder of Methodism. I really like reading his works. Very cool stuff!

Sorry for dropping in with my John Wesley plug but my brother was named after him too...  laugh

You are quite correct.  John Wesley was an Anglican to the day he died.  He looked on his "method" as a way of devotions and practice within the C. of E.   

And it's perfectly OK with me that you dropped it in.  Smiley  Please feel free to join in more if you like.

Ebor
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« Reply #15 on: November 21, 2007, 04:19:01 PM »

Ebor,

Thanks for your replies.  The whole Henry VIII thing makes more sense to me now.

I am glad to be of service.  Smiley  The whole situation was alot more complicated then "the king wanted a new playmate" or "Your Church was based on divorce" which has been a common remark (not *here*).

Quote
But my question to you is about Real Presence.  One of the reasons I no longer
consider myself a Protestant has to do with RP.  The Anglican position on it seems
strange to me.  It seems to me that some Anglicans believe the Eucharist to be
RP and some don't . . . and that's okay.

I believe in RP, but I may have (not quite sure) more respect for the no RP
position than this middle position.  At least the no RP position is consistent
(except, of course, for the part when a man of the cloth says to you "This
is the body of Christ" and doesn't believe that it is).

The Anglican position seems to be that whether or not the Eucharist is RP is up
to the communicant.  That gives the communicant the power to decide
whether this bread/wine is the body/blood of Christ, which IMHO borders
on magical.

This is a good question.  If you are willing we can discuss it and I will give you my idea about it. Please feel free to disagree or offer your view. 

I do not think that it is so much "up to the communicant" though I can see how that might seem. Looking back at 30+ years as an Episcopalian here are my first, somewhat disorganized first thoughts.

First, so that those who may not know about Anglican Eucharistist practice, the elements are bread and wine.  While it's possible that there might be grape juice used somewhere (such as a liturgy for a group of recovering alcoholics) the standard is wine.  It used to be a jest to ask if a friend had visited a new parish "Port or Sherry?"  Smiley  But as long as it's wine we can use it (with a bit of water): Burgundy, champagne, etc. 

The bread has to be some kind of baked grain product, with or without yeast.  Sometimes for small groups or taking to the sick or for other reasons the "Angelic Fish Food" i.e. wafers will be used.  Other times I've seen, pita, whole wheat, oatcakes (St. Andrew's Day). One time in college (It might have been Easter) the main service was *Packed* and there was concern about running out. So one of the students/acolytes was sent across to the local "WaWa" market and returned with some sliced whole wheat bread on the paten. 

None of this is done to be flippant or careless.  It's just that Gospels and the rubrics say "Bread and wine" and that leaves alot of room for what can be used for example in emergencies.

Now as I understand it from being an Anglican: with the Eucharistic service the ordinary bread and wine are changed somehow, though still looking like bread and wine.  We partake because Our Lord told us to do so.  We are obeying His command even if we don't understand Consubstantiation/Transubstantiation etc.  He said "Take, Eat. This is my Body and Blood".  Doing so in faith is the point. 

I'm probably not being clear here, so please help me refine any ideas.  I will try to explain with an example from my life.  Our youngest has mild Down Syndrome.  He is learning to read and write and speak and he is not "stuck" he's just "delayed".  But when he is a teen or an adult and the time comes for him to take communion, I don't know just how much he will understand.  He will see bread and wine and eat and drink.  The partaking in obedience to the command, with the faith that goes with that is what matters, maybe. 

And, the post above about the "Elizabethan Settlement" reminding me of this quote that is supposed to be from that Queen:

Christ was the word that spake it.
He took the bread and break it;
And what his words did make it
That I believe and take it.

That doesn't nail things down, I don't think, but it might be helpful.

Quote
And Ebor, as one of a handful of Orthodox posters on a fundamentalist
board, I can definitely relate to your status as a minority on a board!

 Smiley  Though a minority, yet it is an agreeable place (and they don't mind bad jokes, quotes and my being a History and Tolkien geek  Wink  Cheesy  )

Ebor
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« Reply #16 on: November 21, 2007, 04:48:57 PM »

I would add that the real establishment and consolidation of the Church of England as we know it (ahem . . . at least as we knew it until recently) was under Elizabeth I's 45-year reign (1558-1603). It is usually called the Elizabethan Religious Settlement (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabethan_Religious_Settlement). England could have gone either way before Elizabeth.

Henry VIII was not a "Protestant"---in fact, he burnt subjects espousing typical Protestant theological beliefs. His issue was supremacy, not theology. (Elizabeth was also very conservative, BTW---high-church, pro-vestments, traditional theology, prejudiced against married clergy.)

This is correct.  And it is also part of what Anglicans consider as making them the "Via Media" the "Middle way between the two general groups of RC and Protestant thought. 

The consolidation of the Church of England was also influenced by politics.  The years following Henry's death were full of turmoil.  Edward did not live long, and there was competition for the throne and power which can be seen with the attempted crowning of Lady Jane Grey as Queen. ("The Nine Day Queen").  Then Mary took the throne and by her marriage (suggested by Charles V, remember him?) to his son Phillip of Spain there was the concern of a foreign ruler again as well as the returning of England to Rome.  Phillip became king about a year and a half after their wedding, so there was the Queen of England wife to the King of Spain. 

Well, when Mary died, Elizabeth ascended the throne.  And there were power seekings and politics and threats from other countries again as well as declarations that she was illegitimate (Clement not having allowed the annullment) and therefore could not inherit the throne.  Switch back to Church of England, and come up with the Elizabethan Settlement which was an improvement over previous laws on religious practice.

The threat from Spain was not imagined btw.  Recall that the Spanish Armada was intent on invading and taking England for several reasons, one being to return it to RC and another being that Spain had controlled the Netherlands for some time, and that country was revolting against that rule and getting help from England.  England and Spain were major contenders in the Exploration and Colonization of the New World and other parts of the globe, so that was another aspect.  So Spain/Rome were interwoven and a threat to English sovereignty, economics, trade, political influence, expansion and more.

Like I wrote above... it's very complicated and spans time and the Earth.  (I wonder if that sound a bit umm pretentious.  It's not meant to.  Smiley  )

Break time!

Ebor


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« Reply #17 on: November 25, 2007, 08:54:11 AM »

I do not think that it is so much "up to the communicant" though I can see how that might seem. Looking back at 30+ years as an Episcopalian here are my first, somewhat disorganized first thoughts.


Now as I understand it from being an Anglican: with the Eucharistic service the ordinary bread and wine are changed somehow, though still looking like bread and wine.  We partake because Our Lord told us to do so.  We are obeying His command even if we don't understand Consubstantiation/Transubstantiation etc.  He said "Take, Eat. This is my Body and Blood".  Doing so in faith is the point. 

I'm probably not being clear here, so please help me refine any ideas.  I will try to explain with an example from my life.  Our youngest has mild Down Syndrome.  He is learning to read and write and speak and he is not "stuck" he's just "delayed".  But when he is a teen or an adult and the time comes for him to take communion, I don't know just how much he will understand.  He will see bread and wine and eat and drink.  The partaking in obedience to the command, with the faith that goes with that is what matters, maybe. 


Well, this makes more sense than my "whatever the communicant thinks it is" explanation, so this helps.   Similarly,
Orthodox believe it is still the Real Presence of Christ, whether we believe it or not. 

I attended an Anglican (actually, at the time, Episcopal) Church for a while years ago.  I was allowed to receive communion even though I was not a member of the church.  I recently asked a friend who still attends there about
RP.  He said some believe communion is RP, some don't.

So does the Anglican Church think communion is RP or not?  Or do they not know? 


As for Anglicanism not being Protestantism, I can understand how you would make the argument, but . . .
don't the Anglicans believe in Luther's 5 solas (although they would not call it that), especially
sola scriptura and sole fide (faith alone)?  These are distinct Protestant beliefs.  So, as they say,
if it walks like a duck . . .

Thanks for reading, and no offense meant with the duck remark.

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« Reply #18 on: November 25, 2007, 11:38:41 AM »

I recently asked a friend who still attends there about
RP.  He said some believe communion is RP, some don't.

So does the Anglican Church think communion is RP or not?  Or do they not know?

See: http://web.mac.com/brian.douglas/
[It may take a long time to load.]

I have personally analyzed every major Anglican theologian on the matter.

Cranmer approached the Zwinglian 'memorialist' view. The majority of theologians in the sixteenth century held to the Calvinist 'dynamic presence' view wherein the bread "is" the body to us by way of representation [not by virtue of the consecration but by the faith of the recipient] and is a means of grace. Then in the late seventeenth century many started believing a totally unique view that is now the standard Anglican view: by the consecration of the priest, the bread objectively [independently of faith, so even for unbelievers] becomes the very body in power and effect, so that eating the bread is the exact same thing as eating the literal body. No Anglican believed in consubstantiation [but one or two suggested its a possibility] prior to the Oxford Movement of the nineteenth century. More Anglicans hold to the original Calvinist view than hold to consubstantiation. Mostly only highchurchers, who are heavily influenced by the Oxford Movement, believe in consub.

Quote
As for Anglicanism not being Protestantism, I can understand how you would make the argument, but . . .
don't the Anglicans believe in Luther's 5 solas (although they would not call it that), especially
sola scriptura and sole fide (faith alone)?  These are distinct Protestant beliefs.  So, as they say,
if it walks like a duck . . .


Though 'sola fide' is in the 39 articles, many Anglicans today would say that works also justify in some sense after one is already justified by faith. As for 'sola scriptura', scripture is regarded as 'containing everything necessary for salvation' and 'every doctrine must be proved from scripture', but tradition is also regarded as important. The Anglican formula is: Scripture, Tradition, and Reason. So they really dont believe in sola scriptura. At least not the Continental Protestant version of it.

P.S. I dedicate this post to my Anglican detractor Keble.  Wink

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« Reply #19 on: November 25, 2007, 07:09:25 PM »

I just wanted to say that I so much enjoyed reading Ebor's and other knowledgeable people's posts in this thread. History is my love, my joy since childhood. I became a biologist by pure chance, and sometimes I regret that I did not dedicate my life to history, historical research. Thank you all so much! Smiley
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« Reply #20 on: November 25, 2007, 07:24:42 PM »

I just wanted to say that I so much enjoyed reading Ebor's and other knowledgeable people's posts in this thread. History is my love, my joy since childhood. I became a biologist by pure chance, and sometimes I regret that I did not dedicate my life to history, historical research. Thank you all so much! Smiley

Wow, George, I did not know that about you. Smiley It has been mine since childhood too.

Well, at least you have a paying job. Wink You can still be an amateur. Something I think amateur historians have more fun anyway.
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« Reply #21 on: November 25, 2007, 07:38:17 PM »

Something that I forgot to put in above was that Henry, being the second son, had been educated with a possible eye to joining the clergy.  That was a fairly common pattern in English history: Oldest son inherits the title, lands, etc.  Second son (while kept in reserve as it were, early mortality being what it was) looks to some other path or career in the Church or Law or the like.  So Henry was well versed in Christian thought and literature as well as the arts and other subjects.  According to some of my reading, a possible path for him was planned that he would become the ABC (Archbishop of Canterbury) eventually while his brother ruled England. 

Ebor

Henry wrote a defense of the Seven Sacraments against Luther, for which the pope of Rome gave him the title "Defender of the Faith" (yes, that's where the British monarch gets the title, not from being head of the Anglican church. sort of like the irony that the pope of Rome named the English king "King of Ireland.").

Btw the way Anglicans have become Orthodox via the WRO DL of St. Tikhon.  Their is a Anglican usage rite for those swimming the Tiber.
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« Reply #22 on: November 25, 2007, 07:44:32 PM »

Wow... I'm happy this thread was started. I have a much better understanding of Anglicanism. And I'm sorry if I gave anyone the perception that I had simply "written off" the Anglican Church. I have always lacked the knowledge of the church so I would not dare criticise it. If anything, after reading here and doing research, I have gained much respect for the Anglican Church.
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« Reply #23 on: November 25, 2007, 08:08:07 PM »

Though 'sola fide' is in the 39 articles, many Anglicans today would say that works also justify in some sense after one is already justified by faith. As for 'sola scriptura', scripture is regarded as 'containing everything necessary for salvation' and 'every doctrine must be proved from scripture', but tradition is also regarded as important. The Anglican formula is: Scripture, Tradition, and Reason. So they really dont believe in sola scriptura. At least not the Continental Protestant version of it.

Amazingly enough, this is nearly entirely correct.

Generally Anglican theological principles trace back into Richard Hooker's Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity. This brings us to the much-maligned "three legged stool": scripture, tradition, and reason. It's maligned because Hooker didn't use that particular image, and because it sets up a false equality between the three sources. And it's not merely a description of how to do theology, but also about how theology is done-- by everyone.

And it means that nobody really executes pure Sola Scriptura, because there is always some external tradition and thinking directing interpretation. I should remark that "tradition" as used here encompasses far more than it is taken to mean in Orthodoxy; it includes all that one knows of previous exegesis of the matter, both the good and the "erroneous".

This tends to imply a theology that isn't directed entirely by its past nor by a set of formulas. However, it also tends to imply rejection of certain principles which contradict this theory of theology. So we don't accept as a principle that tradition (as defined in Orthodoxy and Catholicism) is never wrong. If it survives examination, then it continues to be believed.

The more fundamental aspect is that everything tends to be seen very sacramentally and not especially theologically. Traditionally we haven't been heavily into theologizing about the eucharist because on one level we see it as theologizing. It is what it is, and theology cannot change it; and since we are not founded in theological conformity, we've tended not to care that much about anyone's theory about what happens. Within Anglicanism a fairly generic version of substantial change has come to dominate; for example, the 1979 American BCP has "be the body and blood" instead of the older "be for us". But it simply isn't our issue.
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« Reply #24 on: November 26, 2007, 12:54:04 PM »

Well, this makes more sense than my "whatever the communicant thinks it is" explanation, so this helps.   Similarly,
Orthodox believe it is still the Real Presence of Christ, whether we believe it or not. 

I'm glad that you find it understandable.

Quote
I attended an Anglican (actually, at the time, Episcopal) Church for a while years ago.  I was allowed to receive communion even though I was not a member of the church.  I recently asked a friend who still attends there about
RP.  He said some believe communion is RP, some don't.

It is fairly common, in my experience, that Episcopal communion offered to any baptized Christian who wishes to partake.  If one wishes to only have a blessing, the "Please do not feed the Animals" sign is to approach the rail with one's arms crossed on ones chest (which is the sign as I recall for EO who *are* looking to commune.  Sign language has such variety  Smiley )

Quote
So does the Anglican Church think communion is RP or not?  Or do they not know? 

In the Anglican Communion a priest is the only one who can (I think the phrase is) "confect" the Sacrement. We have an ordained priesthood (leaving aside Apostolicae Curae which we don't agree with and was answered by Saepius Officio) who are the only ones who can do certain Sacraments.  So the liturgy of the Eucharist is not just handing out bread and wine but Bread/Body and Wine/Blood even though the elements still look and taste like what they are made of.

I'm not sure what you mean by "Or do they not know?" though.  I apologize for being dim.  Perhaps Keble's post will be helpful in understanding this point.

Quote
As for Anglicanism not being Protestantism, I can understand how you would make the argument, but . . .
don't the Anglicans believe in Luther's 5 solas (although they would not call it that), especially
sola scriptura and sole fide (faith alone)?

No, Anglicans do not hold rigidly to the 5 solas.  "Faith without works is dead" is a big thing in my experience.  Keble has explained about "Scripture, Tradition and Reason". 

Quote
  These are distinct Protestant beliefs.  So, as they say,
if it walks like a duck . . .

Thanks for reading, and no offense meant with the duck remark.

No offense taken.  I'm trying to come up with an image to contrast with it, like "We're more of an Amazonian Grey Parrot who can sound like a duck sometimes (when it's not sounding like an owl, a falcon or a telephone"  Grin  I met a parrot once who could to an excellent phone imitation including a person saying "hello?")

Ebor
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« Reply #25 on: November 26, 2007, 01:13:43 PM »

I just wanted to say that I so much enjoyed reading Ebor's and other knowledgeable people's posts in this thread. History is my love, my joy since childhood. I became a biologist by pure chance, and sometimes I regret that I did not dedicate my life to history, historical research. Thank you all so much! Smiley

I'm very glad that you're enjoying this thread.  (I sometimes can get carried away on a subject and wonder if readers' eyes are glazing over and they're crashing over sideways in boredom.  Smiley )

Real History is has so many fascinating things and people, and the way things are connected or what is happening at the same time in different parts of the world can be very interesting and exciting.  For instance: at the very same time but on opposite sides of the Earth two great works of literature were being written down: the epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf in England and The Tale of Genji by Lady Murasaki Shikibu in Japan.  Two rich and complicated cultures with centuries of history and so different.

And I can tie *that* to the original topic with the case of William Adams an English sailor in the Elizabethan era who was part of the fleet against the Spanish Armada and eventually made it to Japan where he was known as "Anjin-sama" or "Miura Anjin" "Lord Pilot" or the "Pilot of Miura".  There were RC there already and they wanted him and the rest of the crew killed (More religion conflict with the Spanish and Portuguese/RC).

Ebor
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« Reply #26 on: November 26, 2007, 01:22:21 PM »

Henry wrote a defense of the Seven Sacraments against Luther, for which the pope of Rome gave him the title "Defender of the Faith"

This is quite correct.  Thank you for mentioning it.  Smiley

Quote
Btw the way Anglicans have become Orthodox via the WRO DL of St. Tikhon.  Their is a Anglican usage rite for those swimming the Tiber.

Yes, I know of both of these.  I apologize if this sounds too blunt, but from my reading there are Bishops in both EO and RC who would just as soon *not* have either rite in their Churches.

And *some* Anglicans have become EO with the WR.  I personally know others who went Byzantine Liturgy.

Ebor
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« Reply #27 on: November 26, 2007, 01:28:03 PM »

Wow... I'm happy this thread was started. I have a much better understanding of Anglicanism.

I am very glad that you have found it helpful. Is there more you would like to know?  Such as about the Book of Common Prayer (each member Church of the Anglican Communion has its own with the "bones" being the same but other things that are more local.) or other things?

Quote
And I'm sorry if I gave anyone the perception that I had simply "written off" the Anglican Church.

I never got that impresson, I assure you.  Smiley

Quote
I have always lacked the knowledge of the church so I would not dare criticise it.

Well considering that there are those who criticize the Anglicans while not knowing much about them (maybe what they see in the news) you show charity and consideration as well as thought.  Smiley

Quote
If anything, after reading here and doing research, I have gained much respect for the Anglican Church.

Thank you.  It is very nice to read that.

Ebor
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« Reply #28 on: November 26, 2007, 03:07:51 PM »

It is fairly common, in my experience, that Episcopal communion offered to any baptized Christian who wishes to partake.  If one wishes to only have a blessing, the "Please do not feed the Animals" sign is to approach the rail with one's arms crossed on ones chest (which is the sign as I recall for EO who *are* looking to commune.  Sign language has such variety  Smiley )

We also cross our arms if we wish to receive a blessing in lieu of Holy Communion.

You are right on your first point. I don't recall ever going to an Anglican service that practices closed communion. I used to receive before I was confirmed in 2006. My high point was receiving in Kings College Chapel, Cambridge. Smiley

A close Continuing Anglican friend of mine always likes to tell me that I have "dual citizenship," that my confirmation is also recognized by the Anglicans. Being very friendly towards traditional Anglicanism, I always liked to hear it.
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« Reply #29 on: November 26, 2007, 03:19:08 PM »

Yes, I know of both of these.  I apologize if this sounds too blunt, but from my reading there are Bishops in both EO and RC who would just as soon *not* have either rite in their Churches.

An interesting question will be the response of the Holy See to the recent petition by the nearly half-million-strong Traditional Anglican Communion "seeking full, corporate, sacramental union" with Rome.

Pope Benedict and the cardinals were said to have discussed this very petition over the weekend.

I'm praying for a generous response, including a greater accommodation for the Anglican Use. This would be a corporate union, not a trickle of individual converts.
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« Reply #30 on: November 27, 2007, 08:12:11 AM »

Thanks for the well-researched answers, path, Ebor and Keble!

That doesn't mean that I like the answer itself.  For example, let's
take Path's quote of the prevailing Anglican opinion:
by the consecration of the priest, the bread objectively [independently of faith, so even for unbelievers] becomes the very body in power and effect, so that eating the bread is the exact same thing as eating the literal body.

Take out the phrase "in power and effect" and you have Real Presence, agreed?

But a modifying clause's purpose is to, well, modify the meaning.  So, it seems to me,
that what Anglican communion is, according to this view, is virtually identical to
body and blood of Christ.  Sounds a bit too analogous to homo-i-osus to me.

Then, there is the issue that communicant (which need not be Anglican) doesn't have
to believe this view, and could even think of it as a Zwinglian memorial meal. 

Thirdly, not all Anglicans theologians agree on the prevailing view and the Zwinglian
view is an accepted if minority one.

So, back to the original question.

"Do Anglicans believe in Real Presence or not?  Or do they not know?"

The conclusion I reach from the above is that the Anglican answer is
they do not know.  Edited to add: More specifically, the Anglican
Church does not know.  Individual Anglicans may choose to
believe RP or not.

Like Ebor writes, Anglicans accept the Communion by faith
and don't question further, or as Keble seems to say, it's not our issue.
So, they, as a church, don't really know.  Am I right?

Sorry for my tone.



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« Reply #31 on: November 27, 2007, 09:37:28 PM »

Thanks for the well-researched answers, path, Ebor and Keble!

That doesn't mean that I like the answer itself. 

Can you tell us why you don't like the answer please?  And if I may ask, what do you think the answer is?  I want to understand your point of view as much as possible.

Quote
But a modifying clause's purpose is to, well, modify the meaning.  So, it seems to me,
that what Anglican communion is, according to this view, is virtually identical to
body and blood of Christ.  Sounds a bit too analogous to homo-i-osus to me.

I'm pondering the idea of "virtually identical".  Then regarding the Body of Christ, there is His Risen Body which ascended after 40 days and there is the bread and wine of the Eucharist that is the Body and Blood on altars around the world many times a day.

Quote
Then, there is the issue that communicant (which need not be Anglican) doesn't have
to believe this view, and could even think of it as a Zwinglian memorial meal. 

God is who and what He Is and not limited or constrained by the views of people, it seems to me.  God does things for his creation without our knowledge or agreement. 

Quote
The conclusion I reach from the above is that the Anglican answer is
they do not know.  Edited to add: More specifically, the Anglican
Church does not know.  Individual Anglicans may choose to
believe RP or not.

Like Ebor writes, Anglicans accept the Communion by faith
and don't question further, or as Keble seems to say, it's not our issue.
So, they, as a church, don't really know.  Am I right?

Sorry for my tone.

Well, if I may, I would ask you what do you mean by *know*.  Why is this important to you that others "know" as opposed to believe?  What test or analysis could be done for some kind of proof?  Knowledge would be based on some kind of data.  What has been or must be demonstrated to show that there is Real Presence?

Why would this be applied to Anglicans and not to RC or EO? 

What is required to make bread and wine into the Body and Blood?  The elements, the prayers and epiclesis would seem to be necessary.  Well, Anglicans have all those and an ordained priesthood.

I am not trying to be flip or disagreeable or give offense and I apologize if I have done so.  I'm trying to ask you what you think and why.

Ebor
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« Reply #32 on: November 28, 2007, 07:05:22 AM »

Can you tell us why you don't like the answer please?  And if I may ask, what do you think the answer is?  I want to understand your point of view as much as possible.

Thanks for engaging with me, Ebor.  The question is "Do you believe that your church's communion is the Real Presence (i.e., the actual body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ)?"  I think the answer is "yes."  Most Protestants (with the notable exception of Lutherans) say "no."  But I don't understand how an Anglican answers this question.  It's a yes or no question, which is why I find the Anglican answer frustrating (i.e, I don't like the answer itself).   

The Anglican answer seems to me to be "some of us think it is, some of us don't." 

Quote
I'm pondering the idea of "virtually identical".  Then regarding the Body of Christ, there is His Risen Body which ascended after 40 days and there is the bread and wine of the Eucharist that is the Body and Blood on altars around the world many times a day.

This is your view, which I like.  But in many in your church do not believe this.  Ask an EO or RC my initial question (Is it RP?) and the answer is always "yes."

But your church seems to allow its members is to disagree and remain members in good standing.

Quote
God is who and what He Is and not limited or constrained by the views of people, it seems to me.  God does things for his creation without our knowledge or agreement. 

Now this makes sense.  Smiley  No argument here.

Quote
Well, if I may, I would ask you what do you mean by *know*.  Why is this important to you that others "know" as opposed to believe?  What test or analysis could be done for some kind of proof?  Knowledge would be based on some kind of data.  What has been or must be demonstrated to show that there is Real Presence?

Hmm,  I guess I mean  believe.  "Do you believe in RP?"  Faith is a matter of belief, not knowledge.  But, when we say "I don't know," we are not saying "I don't believe."  As I said in the last post (although maybe not so clearly), the Anglican church  doesn't appear to know whether or not communion is RP.  It seems to me that Anglicans (people) can believe in RP or not, Anglicans theologians can debate the issue, and their explanations of RP are not so simple (it becomes the body in power and effect), therefore, the Anglican church does not know whether communion is RP.

Both of you Anglican posters seem to say this in different ways.  You say that we receive it in faith, but not necessarily understanding.  (EO don't claim to understand RP, but we believe that it is RP; RC do claim some understanding with transubstantiation).  Keble says "it's not our issue."   

Quote
Why would this be applied to Anglicans and not to RC or EO? 


I hope that I have made this clear.  It is church doctrine in RC and EO that communion is RP, no qualifications
like "in effect;" it is RP.  In the Anglican Church, you appear free to believe whatever you want about RP.
 
Quote
What is required to make bread and wine into the Body and Blood?  The elements, the prayers and epiclesis would seem to be necessary.  Well, Anglicans have all those and an ordained priesthood.

I am not arguing about the mechanics of it.  You guys do fine with that. 

Thanks for reading.
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« Reply #33 on: November 28, 2007, 03:53:18 PM »

Both of you Anglican posters seem to say this in different ways.  You say that we receive it in faith, but not necessarily understanding.  (EO don't claim to understand RP, but we believe that it is RP; RC do claim some understanding with transubstantiation).  Keble says "it's not our issue."   

I wouldn't say that transubstantiation is understanding, per se.  If it is, then we as EO DO have an understanding of RP.  We recognize, in Holy Communion, implications of the incarnation, as well as a concern for the entire totality of being-- we see creation being divinized and deified.  Transubstantiation says that bread and wine are NOT bread and wine, that what is left after the consecration are "accidents."  This is not what EO believe.  As EO, we believe that, just as Christ existed in two natures in one reality, we see two natures within the Eucharist- divine and created.  This is very introductory as far as Eucharistic theology goes, of course.  It gets a lot deeper than this.  As to whether we EO understand the Eucharist, well of course we can't understand it fully, that is why it is mystical.  Just because we can't fully understand the Eucharist, though, doesn't mean we throw it out and leave the people to their own devices as to whether or not it is RP.  I would venture to say that there are plenty of Fathers and Saints who have a pretty good grasp on the subject.  St. Nicholas Cabasilas comes to mind.

What we do have in common with RC's, in CONTRAST to Anglicans is that, rather than thinking of God when we see bread and wine, or thinking we might see God in bread and wine, we fully believe, without a doubt, that we PERFECTLY see God in bread and wine within the Holy Eucharist, and through it we truly commune and are united with Him. 

Hope this is at least a little clear.
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« Reply #34 on: November 28, 2007, 03:54:56 PM »

A close Continuing Anglican friend of mine always likes to tell me that I have "dual citizenship," that my confirmation is also recognized by the Anglicans. Being very friendly towards traditional Anglicanism, I always liked to hear it.

I hadn't heard this one before.  I like it.  Smiley

Ebor
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« Reply #35 on: November 28, 2007, 05:24:04 PM »

Thanks for engaging with me, Ebor. 

You're welcome.  It's a pleasure to discuss and not be ranted or sneered at.  Smiley

Quote
The question is "Do you believe that your church's communion is the Real Presence (i.e., the actual body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ)?"  I think the answer is "yes."  Most Protestants (with the notable exception of Lutherans) say "no."  But I don't understand how an Anglican answers this question.  It's a yes or no question, which is why I find the Anglican answer frustrating (i.e, I don't like the answer itself).   

Thank you for explaining.  But is it really a "yes or no question"?  What about "I don't know."? or "It is, but it is also bread and wine."?   Some people prefer hard plain answers and others can be at ease with a degree of uncertainty, it seems to me.

Also, you are asking this question of individual persons who (at least here and those you might have known in person) are part of the laity.  Or you might have asked a priest, too.  But these would all be individuals rather then the Voice of the Anglican Communion.  It makes me wonder, and I'm not trying to be rude with this, whether there is such uniformity in the RC.  Or if an RC person at mass said that he/she didn't know if there was the Real Presence but they're supposed to come and partake because that's what they were taught, so they do, would that make them ummm "not really RC?" or that they should not partake?

Quote
The Anglican answer seems to me to be "some of us think it is, some of us don't." 

That is only part of the answer.  And there are many things that happen without people fully understanding them or that are not affected by a person's opinion. I could think that the Earth is flat, but that doesn't affect the real Earth or it's physical form.  Also, my thinking would be wrong about it's shape, but I would still be experiencing the real things on it.

Quote
This is your view, which I like.  But in many in your church do not believe this. 

Or, to use the example I mentioned above, maybe they do not understand it on the same level as you do or they are not ready to fully accept the idea, but they do want to obey the words of Jesus so they "Take and eat".  I do not know what people believe in their deepest being.  But it could be that God touches each person that seeks him in a way that they can, in their human limitations, respond to.  If a person is coming back to Christianity after a long time away and is searching but might be confused or uncertain, the little steps God-ward are better then not trying at all because a huge leap that she/he doesn't think can be done is demanded by another human being.

Quote
Ask an EO or RC my initial question (Is it RP?) and the answer is always "yes."

Well, see my question to you above.

Quote
But your church seems to allow its members is to disagree and remain members in good standing.

Families are like that, or should be, at least on some points of disagreement, and sometimes a member does go 'off the track' but locking him out might not be the right way to help him see his error.  And it depends on the situation; we're not as 'free-wheeling' as some would think we are. Not everything is a binary situation in life, I think that more things are more 'grey' then easy 'black and white'.   Smiley and then again there are procedures and ways that things are dealt with.   

Quote
Hmm,  I guess I mean  believe.  "Do you believe in RP?" 

This suddenly reminded me of a joke a former Baptist once told me:  "A Texas Baptist is once asked if he believes in the existance of Infant Baptism.  He replies, "Heck yes, I've seen it done."   Wink    I'm not trying to be difficult, just that 'belief' has different applications.

And by that change of word then my Church does believe in the Real Presence; it is the official belief of the Anglican Communion that there is the Real Presence in our Eucharists, not in the 'substance and accidents' Aristotelian-Transubstatiantion mode, but Real nonetheless.  Consubstantiation is the model.
 
Please forgive me if this is too personal, but it seems that you're trying to nail down that Anglicans don't have the Body and the Blood, though we believe that our Eucharist is just that, though not in the same terms as the RC. Is this the case or am I mis-reading (which I freely admit is possible).  Also, this seems to be of some importance to you; could you possibly explain if this is the case and why, please?  If you prefer to not answer, I apologize for asking and withdraw the question.

Quote
I hope that I have made this clear.  It is church doctrine in RC and EO that communion is RP, no qualifications
like "in effect;" it is RP.  In the Anglican Church, you appear free to believe whatever you want about RP.

It is our doctrine as well.  Yet all of these Churches are made up of millions of individual Human Beings with their own thoughts and beliefs.  I'm probably not being very clear here, but it seems to me that in your posting you're classifying EO and RC as groups while for the Anglicans you are speaking of individuals.  I need to re-read this and ponder a bit more maybe.

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I am not arguing about the mechanics of it.  You guys do fine with that. 

Well, we have that part right, at least.  Smiley

I hope very much that nothing I have written has offended you or been too personal.  It is not my intent at all to do that.  I'm just trying to work out the ideas and clarify what we mean in this topic.

Ebor

edited to improve some syntax
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« Reply #36 on: November 29, 2007, 07:39:30 AM »

The question referred to below, is "Do you believe your church's communion is the Real Presence of Jesus Christ?



Thank you for explaining.  But is it really a "yes or no question"?  What about "I don't know."? or "It is, but it is also bread and wine."?   Some people prefer hard plain answers and others can be at ease with a degree of uncertainty, it seems to me.

I think it is a "yes" or "no" question.  I'll admit, however, that there are some variations on a theme -- does it stay as bread and wine, who must initiate the process in church--but the basic question remains, as is the resurrection of Christ.  It either happened or it didn't.   But "I don't know" is a strange answer for a church to claim.   Orthodoxy, as I understand it, can deal with uncertainty, but it depends about what.   For example, it can't deal with uncertainty about the resurrection of Jesus (which some Anglican writers do, as I understand).  Orthodoxy has a less clear definition of salvation--but that's good, because there is no formula for salvation in the Bible.  That's a good type of uncertainty.

I think Greek Chef's response answers many of your questions:
What we do have in common with RC's, in CONTRAST to Anglicans is that, rather than thinking of God when we see bread and wine, or thinking we might see God in bread and wine, we fully believe, without a doubt, that we PERFECTLY see God in bread and wine within the Holy Eucharist, and through it we truly commune and are united with Him. 



Quote

Please forgive me if this is too personal, but it seems that you're trying to nail down that Anglicans don't have the Body and the Blood, though we believe that our Eucharist is just that, though not in the same terms as the RC. Is this the case or am I mis-reading (which I freely admit is possible).  Also, this seems to be of some importance to you; could you possibly explain if this is the case and why, please?  If you prefer to not answer, I apologize for asking and withdraw the question.

Well, Ebor my man,  please remember you asked  Wink  It is one thing that moved me away from Protestantism.  From my reading of the Bible, John 6  and I Cor 10, 11 and the Gospel accounts do not seem 100 percent certain to be talking about Real Presence.  However, the proponderence of the evidence tilts in the direction of RP, IMHO.    But, really, who cares what I think?  What about the early church fathers?  What about early saints?  A casual reading of St. Ignatius shows how important the Eucharist is.  None of the early church fathers wrote against RP, and most wrote in favor of it.  What about 1600 years of church history, when RP was consistently practiced?  Does God work through his church?

To Protestants, none of this apparently counts for much.  They look the same approach that I first did--picked up a Bible and read it.  Big deal.  If 1600 years of consistent church practice doesn't count for anything, what in history does? 

The Anglican position --which I still don't quite understand-- seems to be a "middle road position" between RP and anti-RP.  But it still IMHO goes against the 1600 years of church history.  That is why it is important (and in my mind, why I consider Anglicans to be Protestant).   

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It is our doctrine as well.  Yet all of these Churches are made up of millions of individual Human Beings with their own thoughts and beliefs.  I'm probably not being very clear here, but it seems to me that in your posting you're classifying EO and RC as groups while for the Anglicans you are speaking of individuals. 

I understand how you can get this from what I wrote.  So, let me clarify.  Yes, there are RCs (and maybe some EOs) who don't believe in RP, but they not supposed to.  The difference with Anglicanism to me is that Anglicans are allowed to support the anti-RP position (syntax point: I say anti- here to avoid a double negative).  Please clarify about your church's position if I am incorrect.  It seems to me and from what I read here and elsewhere, the Anglicans position equivocally supports RP, but the Zwinglian position is okay too.   This seems to support some kind of middle ground that Anglicans claim between Protestants and Catholics, which seems to be the overall Anglican tendency. Please correct my incorrect descriptions of your church.

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« Reply #37 on: November 29, 2007, 07:50:16 AM »

Trifecta I understand where your coming from really but Through Pm's and emails Ebor has shown me that the Anglican church is (I hate this word) valid because there is diverse opinion in the church and the Anglican church does not choose to explicitly state on some major points in Christianity which is sort of like the Orthodox "It's a mystery" except with differing opinion. Just to clarify about how important the Eucharist is to some protestants I have met I have a friend who is Pentecostal who completely humbled me by explaining there routine before accepting the Eucharist and it was so pious and humble it really made me think how I take the Eucharist but actually believe what it is.
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« Reply #38 on: November 30, 2007, 04:20:07 PM »

The question referred to below, is "Do you believe your church's communion is the Real Presence of Jesus Christ?

I think it is a "yes" or "no" question.  I'll admit, however, that there are some variations on a theme -- does it stay as bread and wine, who must initiate the process in church--but the basic question remains, as is the resurrection of Christ.  It either happened or it didn't.   But "I don't know" is a strange answer for a church to claim. 

I have emphasized the words in your passage because it is where there seems to be a conflation of the individual person and the official doctrine of a Church.  It is the individual, such as my son with Downs Syndrome, who might say "I don't know" but still partake of the Eucharist because it is the command of Our Lord.  The official doctrine of the Anglican Churches is "Yes, it is the Real Presence."  The Anglican Church does not go for explainations of Substance and Accidents and Transubstantiation and things like if a host is defiled it bleeds (as I have read some legends say).  It is Bread/Body and Wine/Blood and God makes it that way. We "Take and Eat".


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 Orthodoxy, as I understand it, can deal with uncertainty, but it depends about what. 

I submit the same is true of Anglicanism.

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 For example, it can't deal with uncertainty about the resurrection of Jesus (which some Anglican writers do, as I understand).

They are individual Anglicans, not the Voice of the Church.  And there are and have been *plenty* of objections and countering statements to them. And again, for some people, they don't know or haven't made the 'leap of faith' but they are trying as well as they can to follow God.  We're not all on the same level or lap; each is running his own race as it were towards the Goal.

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I think Greek Chef's response answers many of your questions:

I apprecate GreekChef joining us and posting.  But I would ask how much knowledge she has of the Anglican Church also.  Living somewhere is different from reading about it or visiting, it seems to me.  Smiley

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Well, Ebor my man,  please remember you asked  Wink  It is one thing that moved me away from Protestantism.  From my reading of the Bible, John 6  and I Cor 10, 11 and the Gospel accounts do not seem 100 percent certain to be talking about Real Presence.  However, the proponderence of the evidence tilts in the direction of RP, IMHO. 

And as you wrote, that is your opinion and I acknowledge that.  But many may read the same passages and not see the 'tilt' but still read that Jesus says "Do this" so they obey.

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What about 1600 years of church history, when RP was consistently practiced?

I'm sorry, I'm unsure about this sentence. (I'm a bit dim today)  "practiced"?

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  Does God work through his church?

Yes and in many ways.  Smiley

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To Protestants, none of this apparently counts for much. 

Umm, not trying to be difficult here, but there is no generic bloc of "Protestants" and for many individual protestant persons the old writings do count for something.

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They look the same approach that I first did--picked up a Bible and read it.  Big deal.  If 1600 years of consistent church practice doesn't count for anything, what in history does? 

For many they did no do that, they were taught by their parents and grandparents and clergy and accepted just as happens to some who are RC or EO from what I gather.  And if I may bring this up, it was abuses and ill-usage by those claiming to represent God that were sometimes the impetus to protesting and leaving RC.  Sometimes cruelty or other vices can overshadow things that may be good.

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The Anglican position --which I still don't quite understand-- seems to be a "middle road position" between RP and anti-RP.  But it still IMHO goes against the 1600 years of church history.  That is why it is important (and in my mind, why I consider Anglicans to be Protestant).   

Well, we call ourselves the Via Media  Smiley  This may be the point where we must agree to disagree.  The Anglican Communion has Real Presence as its doctrine, but we don't do checks at the rail before we partake.... middle way

With respect.  Smiley

Ebor

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« Reply #39 on: December 01, 2007, 10:58:37 AM »

Ebor,

And as you wrote, that is your opinion and I acknowledge that.  But many may read the same passages and not see the 'tilt' but still read that Jesus says "Do this" so they obey.

I understand your point about the obedience.  It sounds a lot of sense, actually, and
it helps me to appreciate your church's viewpoint better.

I fear that you missed my point here, as evidenced by your quote above.  The point wasn't that I read scripture and therefore, the conclusion I came to is the right one.  I may think I am wonderful interpreter of Scripture but why should anyone else?   And, yes, I can understand how someone can pick up a Bible and come to the opposite conclusion.

But most Protestants stop there--due to their committment to sola scriptura.  The point was that for 1600 years RP was the church's unaltered stance about communion (and thus communion was "practiced" in such a manner).  Was the Holy Spirit not guiding the church during all those years?


Quote
   
Umm, not trying to be difficult here, but there is no generic bloc of "Protestants" and for many individual protestant persons the old writings do count for something.

I am glad to hear this, but in my many years as a Protestant, I have never heard a sermon which quoted any church Father other than Augustine (and even that was rare).   I think the typical view of Protestants towards early church writings is they are fine as long as they don't disagree with what we think today.   

Sorry to rant.  Embarrassed   Actually, I think Anglicanism is one of the better Protestant confessions. 


Can I ask another question? 

What is the role of the Queen of England in your church?  I have heard everything from a
Papal substitute to just another parishoner (well not quite).  I have imagined her is a
kind of spiritual head of state (not unlike her role as political head of state).  She has no real power
but is some kind of figurehead of the church.

Thanks again for reading.
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« Reply #40 on: December 01, 2007, 01:14:04 PM »

Can I ask another question? 

What is the role of the Queen of England in your church?  I have heard everything from a
Papal substitute to just another parishoner (well not quite).  I have imagined her is a
kind of spiritual head of state (not unlike her role as political head of state).  She has no real power
but is some kind of figurehead of the church.

Thanks again for reading.


The Queen is the 'Supreme Governor of the Church of England' and it is more just a title and symbolic now.  The Monarch in the past would appoint members to high ranking offices in the Church of England, but I believe the Prime Minister does that now (with input from the clergy) and the choice is just approved by the Monarch.  Just like giving a parliamentary bill Royal assent.
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« Reply #41 on: December 04, 2007, 01:05:11 PM »

I understand your point about the obedience.  It sounds a lot of sense, actually, and
it helps me to appreciate your church's viewpoint better.

 Smiley  I'm glad that it was helpful.  I was trying.

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I fear that you missed my point here, as evidenced by your quote above.  The point wasn't that I read scripture and therefore, the conclusion I came to is the right one.  I may think I am wonderful interpreter of Scripture but why should anyone else?   And, yes, I can understand how someone can pick up a Bible and come to the opposite conclusion.

But most Protestants stop there--due to their committment to sola scriptura

It came up somewhere on the forum, that few if anyone really does go by Sola Scriptura. There is an element of tradition, too, since people do not live nor develop in a vacuum.   On what do you base the idea that "most Protestants" are that way, please?

And, I apolgize for sounding like a broken record, but when phrases like "most Protestants" are used I really wonder on what they are based. I've not come across any Lutherans or Methodists (out of Anglicans, remember) or Presbyterians who are "Sola Scriptura".  Anglcans certainly aren't. 

There are some who would say that they are. Then there are groups who maintain that "real" Christianity was underground, as it were for hundreds of years until the Reformation  But they have their own traditions and lines of thought.

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The point was that for 1600 years RP was the church's unaltered stance about communion (and thus communion was "practiced" in such a manner).  Was the Holy Spirit not guiding the church during all those years?

I belive that the Holy Spirit guides us.  But I also believe that sometimes people may not listen, or add things that they like, or think about what things mean to figure them out and more. Have you done much reading to find out why some Christians rejected the RC belief?  What was the motivation to think that the RC practice was in error?  As I wrote above, sometimes abuses and evil deeds can over-shadow or blot out what might be good.

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I am glad to hear this, but in my many years as a Protestant, I have never heard a sermon which quoted any church Father other than Augustine (and even that was rare).   I think the typical view of Protestants towards early church writings is they are fine as long as they don't disagree with what we think today.   

May I ask what Church you were a member of, please?  If you prefer to not answer, I apolgize for asking.  Smiley

Well, while I don't remember *every* sermon I've heard, I can say that maybe I've just been with a line of priests and preachers who draw from many sources because I've heard Church Fathers quoted and cited.  (Actually, Augustine of Hippo not so much). 

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Actually, I think Anglicanism is one of the better Protestant confessions. 

Thank you.  Smiley

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Can I ask another question? 

What is the role of the Queen of England in your church?  I have heard everything from a
Papal substitute to just another parishoner (well not quite).  I have imagined her is a
kind of spiritual head of state (not unlike her role as political head of state).  She has no real power
but is some kind of figurehead of the church.

In the American part of the Anglican Communion the Queen of England does not have a role. If she visits this country, she may attend an Episcopal parish church if she wishes (Prince Charles did that on his last visit in the last couple of years) and she would be treated courteously as a visiting dignitary and as an older lady.  Even in England she is not any kind of "papal substitute".  She is mentioned in the prayers of the people, like the president and other leaders here, and all state occasions of a religious nature are in the context of the Church of England (coronations, weddings, funerals, etc) as far as I know.

Friul is correct.  The Queen does not choose the Archbishops, she gives a formal approval.

Ebor
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« Reply #42 on: December 05, 2007, 12:05:21 AM »

It came up somewhere on the forum, that few if anyone really does go by Sola Scriptura. There is an element of tradition, too, since people do not live nor develop in a vacuum.   On what do you base the idea that "most Protestants" are that way, please?


Sola Scriptura is a Protestant doctrine, more accurately, a slogan.   Most Protestant subscribe to the idea, if not the practice.  As you said, no one is really sola scriptura, but most Protestants I know insist on it.  Even some Anglicans from an Evangelical mode.  More below.



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And, I apolgize for sounding like a broken record, but when phrases like "most Protestants" are used I really wonder on what they are based. I've not come across any Lutherans or Methodists (out of Anglicans, remember) or Presbyterians who are "Sola Scriptura".  Anglcans certainly aren't. 


Really? Perhaps you are hanging out in non-evangelical circles.  Check out the doctrinal statements of most evangelical seminaries.  Sola Scriptura is in there.  They will say something like The Scriptures are the ultimate (or sometimes only) authority.  Baptists, which are the largest denomination in the US, certainly believe this.

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There are some who would say that they are. Then there are groups who maintain that "real" Christianity was underground, as it were for hundreds of years until the Reformation  But they have their own traditions and lines of thought.

They certainly have their own traditions, but usually don't admit to having one.  Some claim they have the faith
of the early church but most don't know Arius from Athanasius (I didn't know this until I started looking into Orthodoxy Embarrassed.)  Lots of fundamentalist groups fall in this category, which in America is the largest Protestant "supergroup."  For example, a poll showed most Americans think the Dispensationalist reading of the end times is the correct one, helped by the "Left Behind" series.


Quote
Have you done much reading to find out why some Christians rejected the RC belief?  What was the motivation to think that the RC practice was in error?  As I wrote above, sometimes abuses and evil deeds can over-shadow or blot out what might be good.

I am sympathic to those suffering under the abuses of a church, as the Protestant fathers did.  But that was 400 years ago.  Growing up Catholic, I didn't even know what indulgences were.  But some Protestant kids thought when we dropped money in a collection plate, it was an indulgence.   21st century Catholicism is not 16th century Catholicism. 

Quote


May I ask what Church you were a member of, please?  If you prefer to not answer, I apolgize for asking.  Smiley


For three years, a now-Anglican church.  It was one of the evangelical ones that recently split from the Episcopal Church.  For many years after, an interdenominational church.   I wasn't a church hopper, but I have attended churches sponsored by Baptists, AOG, Churches of Christ, independent.   And of course, I grew up Catholic.
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« Reply #43 on: December 06, 2007, 06:04:45 AM »

Trifecta,

I would like to say a few things about the way you are addressing our fellow poster Ebor,
First if you would kindly move your eyes to the left of the screen you would see that Ebor has 3,412 (for now) posts which would logically mean that Ebor has been posting here for quite a long time and has a decent knowledge of Orthodoxy so tone the proselytizing down to a subtle murmur because I'm sure Christian charity would be easier to attract someone then harsh apologetics. Secondly your constant sweeping "comments" about Protestantism show both a misunderstanding in the Diversity of Protestantism and seem uncharitable to the position that the Ebor holds. Thirdly your beef seems to be with non-liturgical evangelicals which Ebor is not even close to (as a High Church Anglican who holds many of the positions that any canonical Orthodox would hold). Fourthly (is that a word) the thread is Help me understand Anglicanism not Lets try and debunk and attack the Anglican church.
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« Reply #44 on: December 06, 2007, 12:35:51 PM »

Really? Perhaps you are hanging out in non-evangelical circles. 

Well, You can tell that I hang out around here a good bit.  Wink

Quote
Check out the doctrinal statements of most evangelical seminaries.  Sola Scriptura is in there.  They will say something like The Scriptures are the ultimate (or sometimes only) authority. 

Ultimate is not the same as only.  And it is clear since there are writings and teachings in other Churches that more then the Bible is used.  But we've gone over this already. Please forgive me, but I'm not sure why you would keep on the subject of Sola Scriptura when it doesn't apply to Anglicans (that being the subject of the thread.)  I'm not going to change and say that it does.  Smiley

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They certainly have their own traditions, but usually don't admit to having one.

This, I think, is not only a thing done by some protestant Churches and groups.  Sometimes, maybe, people don't think about it like that in the day-to-day, but in conversations unconsidered or simply accepted things might then be looked at.  It's a sort of "Dawn breaks" factor, maybe.

 
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Some claim they have the faith of the early church but most don't know Arius from Athanasius (I didn't know this until I started looking into Orthodoxy Embarrassed.)  Lots of fundamentalist groups fall in this category, which in America is the largest Protestant "supergroup." 

Well, on some basic level they have some of the points of the early church, I think: Jesus as the Son of God, the Trinity, the Resurrection and others.  That they don't know history in the 3rd and 4th centuries (to use Arius and Athanasius as examples) isn't surprising since many people don't know alot of history of any sort.  Materials aren't available in general circulation (though that is one of the VERY Good things about the 'Net, that real historical documents maybe found on-line rather then the few copies being in a distant library.) or a number of other factors. 

Quote

For example, a poll showed most Americans think the Dispensationalist reading of the end times is the correct one, helped by the "Left Behind" series.

Widely distributed, popular fiction.  If that is what they've read, one cannot blame them if they do not know about other concepts.  Look at how mass belief movements have happened in history, including the ones that were spread by voice when many could not read.  It's helpful to remember that the move to universal literacy is quite recent in Human history.

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I am sympathic to those suffering under the abuses of a church, as the Protestant fathers did.  But that was 400 years ago. 

Ermm, things happened since then too.  And sometimes being mistreated by people who belong to a group, even if they aren't being *good* members of it, can taint people's ideas.  Lest you think I only look at one angle, the anti-RC movements in American political history also were abusive and cruel to the (particularly immigrant) RC's who suffered them.  And for some the memory of what was done to their family, co-religionists, country isn't going to evaporate in a short time.

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21st century Catholicism is not 16th century Catholicism. 

Well, some of it is.  Wink  The creeds and structure and worship are still there.

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For three years, a now-Anglican church.  It was one of the evangelical ones that recently split from the Episcopal Church.  For many years after, an interdenominational church.   I wasn't a church hopper, but I have attended churches sponsored by Baptists, AOG, Churches of Christ, independent.   And of course, I grew up Catholic.

Thank you.  I appreciate your telling of some of your ecclesiastical background.

Ebor
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« Reply #45 on: December 06, 2007, 01:08:52 PM »

ALL HAIL HER MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH II THE SUPREME GOVERNOR OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND!!!

 Roll Eyes  Roll Eyes  Roll Eyes

I thought better of you Path of Solitude.

Anglicanism is not a joke however much as it does invoke our laughter.

A very ascetic and holy Serbian Abbess told me that Anglicianism has a very strong demonic spirit, stronger and more demonic actually than the papist one. She told me and the others that we should both fear and hate it. That is the geniune Christian attitude towards it- not laughter.

Do you know anything about how many people the Anglicans hanged for just being poor during their reformation? Do you know anything about the plantations of Ulster and Munster? The fire bombing of Dresden? The massacres that followed the Indian mutitany? Do you know how utterly riddled with satanic Freemasonary it is?

No. This is a serious matter.

Theophan.


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« Reply #46 on: December 06, 2007, 01:18:54 PM »

...Serbian Abbess...

Do you know anything about how many people the Anglicans hanged for just being poor during their reformation? Do you know anything about the plantations of Ulster and Munster? The fire bombing of Dresden? The massacres that followed the Indian mutitany? Do you know how utterly riddled with satanic Freemasonary it is?

Thank God that you've found an ecclesiastical / national group that doesn't have any ties to any acts unbecoming of Christians. 
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« Reply #47 on: December 06, 2007, 04:18:42 PM »


Anglicanism is not a joke however much as it does invoke our laughter.

Sigh.  I know from encounters in the past on the E-cafe that you dislike the English and by extension the Anglican Churches.  I don't know why, though you are in Ireland the last I knew, so a guess could be the wars and abuses of the past. I read history and know of the ill as well as the good that peoples can do.  Would you be willing to tell us why you have such dislike of the Anglican Churches please?  If you prefer to not, then I understand and apologize for asking.

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A very ascetic and holy Serbian Abbess told me that Anglicianism has a very strong demonic spirit, stronger and more demonic actually than the papist one. She told me and the others that we should both fear and hate it. That is the geniune Christian attitude towards it- not laughter.

So you would fear and hate the Anglican Communion?  Is that what a follower if Jesus is supposed to do?  Hate others?  Sad   One might think that a better thing to do would be neither hatred nor laughter but charity.  One wonders just what real things the Abbess knew about any real Anglicans or whether it was hearsay and rumour.

How does one witness Christianity to those one has decided to hate?

Quote
Do you know anything about how many people the Anglicans hanged for just being poor during their reformation? Do you know anything about the plantations of Ulster and Munster? The fire bombing of Dresden? The massacres that followed the Indian mutitany?

In this you are lumping all these deeds under the 'umbrella' of a Church.  Dresden was not done on the orders of the Archbishop of Canterbury.   Nor was it only RAF who did it.  The man in command of such bombing has been denounced by many. 

Such deeds are a shame and a blot and they are in the past. They are also not limited to one country or Church.   How much will the deeds of past centuries get in the way of dealing with real living Human Beings today?  I can try to apologize for the works of the past, though I had no part of them, nor as far as I know did any of my ancestors.

I am sorry for all of the evils done in the name of Christianity let alone any part of the Anglican Communion.  Such deeds can be remembered as What Not To Do.

Just to be accurate, the Anglican Communion is mostly not the Church of England either.  The members of the Communion are in many parts of the world and the "average Anglican" is now a married woman with children in Africa.  To look at a photo of the Primates of the member Churches is to see how much is it not "English"
http://www.anglicancommunion.org/_userfiles/Image/full/acns3945f.jpg

I am sorry that there is such animosity. I wish I knew how to atone or heal it. 

Ebor
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« Reply #48 on: December 06, 2007, 05:25:17 PM »

The English have brutally occupied my fatherland. We have suffered over 800 years of bloody occupation...However my Godfather is english, and very proud to be english. I have no problemn with him or his pride( lack of patriotism is a sin). He hates more Anglicanism more than I have the strength too but that is probably a product of his love for England which I dont have.To really love the English is to hate Anglicanism. He approves of my hatred for the "Church of Ireland" because they lobby the free state to allow doctors (funny how most abortion doctors are jewish) to murder Irish childern while they are still in their mothers womb. Dont the Anglicans in the USA support not only abortion but homosexuality?

However it wasnt me who said that but a very Spiritual person. The demonic spirit of Anglicanism should be hated and feared.

I dont hate Anglicans. I hate Anglicanism. Though of course unrepentent Anglicans go to hell when they die which is something for you to think about. I fear its demonic spirit because I am basically not a nice person who is easily tempted by this world. What I wrote was addressed to Path of Solitude who is a Christian (though a heretical one), not to you who are an "Anglican" i.e. an English individual.

Theophan.

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Those taighs who stand in Moscows shoes we will watch them as they
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"I still remember those men who fought and died
Knowing that they had to win
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Of the red flag flying in Berlin"


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« Reply #49 on: December 06, 2007, 06:05:22 PM »

The English have brutally occupied my fatherland. We have suffered over 800 years of bloody occupation

Thank you for clarifying some of the source of your feelings.  It helps to understand another person even a little bit.

History is full of one group attacking another, of wars and conquest and evil.  Ireland before the 1200's was not immune to this, nor any other country that I know of.  And the Republic of Ireland has not been "occupied" since the 1920's and I know of the Easter Rising and the other struggles from centuries before that.  I also know of Ulster/Northern Ireland and the troubles there.

Quote
lack of patriotism is a sin

 Huh  a sin? based on what please?

Quote
. He hates more Anglicanism more than I have the strength too but that is probably a product of his love for England which I dont have.To really love the English is to hate Anglicanism.

Not knowing the cause or background for such feelings, it is not a topic of conversation without the gentleman himself present.  But it is unfortunate that he has them. 

I'm sorry, I do not follow how how the Church of England is not part of England or how to love the one is to hate the other.   How is "love" associated with hatred please?  And may I ask what personal experience, if any, you have had with any faithful Christian who belongs to one of the members of the Anglican communion?   

Quote
He approves of my hatred for the "Church of Ireland" because they lobby the free state to allow doctors (funny how most abortion doctors are jewish) to murder Irish childern while they are still in their mothers womb. Dont the Anglicans in the USA support not only abortion but homosexuality?

There is no "The Anglicans" there are millions of individuals who each have their own faults and virtues and causes.  There are Episcopalian Pro-Life groups and persons who may be homosexual are still Human Beings, so in that sense they should be treated with respect.    I do not understand what a remark about "Jewish doctors" has to do with the subject at hand.  On what would such a comment as "most" be based in reality?

Quote
However it wasnt me who said that but a very Spiritual person. The demonic spirit of Anglicanism should be hated and feared.

And I will disagree that Anglicanism is "demonic".    All persons are given to sin and temptation. 

Quote
I dont hate Anglicans. I hate Anglicanism.

I am sorry that you have such feelings. 

Quote
Though of course unrepentent Anglicans go to hell when they die which is something for you to think about.

 Sad  And you know this how?

Quote
What I wrote was addressed to Path of Solitude who is a Christian (though a heretical one), not to you who are an "Anglican" i.e. an English individual.

I'm sorry, but you are mistaken.  I live in the United States and my ancestors were Scots, German, Cherokee and a few others.  "Anglican" does not mean "English" for most of the world.  But it *does* mean member of a Christian Church. 

I apologize if anything that I have written has upset you.  I hope that you may find some peace.

With respect,

Ebor
I am sorry that you have troubles
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« Reply #50 on: December 06, 2007, 06:29:55 PM »

I have peace.

The peace of Jesus Christ who came to bring to earth the sword of division.

I know that unrepentent Anglicians go to hell until the last Judgement because the Church teaches me so.

I am sad that you cant see why we hate and fear the demonic spirit of Anglicanism.

I hope that one day you will become a True Orthodox Christian.

Theophan.
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« Reply #51 on: December 06, 2007, 06:54:13 PM »

I have peace.

The peace of Jesus Christ who came to bring to earth the sword of division.

I know that unrepentent Anglicians go to hell until the last Judgement because the Church teaches me so.

I am sad that you cant see why we hate and fear the demonic spirit of Anglicanism.

I hope that one day you will become a True Orthodox Christian.

Theophan.


Silly me I thought the church stated that no one knows who goes to Hell except for God? Please GOCTheophan what is the demonic spirit of Anglicanism? These ignorant ad hominems against a fellow follower of Christ (or anyone for that matter) are uncalled for and hurtful especially when Ebor shows you nothing but Christian charity and all you show Ebor back are hurtful and ignorant words.
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« Reply #52 on: December 06, 2007, 07:24:47 PM »

Christ said that without Baptism that you will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

Christ said that without the Eucharist you have no Life in you.

Thats for starters.

My postition is a liberbal and conjectural.

Love for Ebor is telling him the truth that he will descend to hades after his soul is seperated from his body to await judgement because he does not have the Grace of Baptism neither has he been joined to the Body of Christ. He probably stands a better chance of ultimate Salvation than members of OCA who have none at all but still lets face it...what are the chances of his repentence? What are the chances of his being able to embrace the Truth when faced with it and not cling to the demons of Anglicanism unto the Ages? He has had access to the Truth and he has rejected it.

Theophan.




You are being placed on post moderation for repeated personal attacks.  You will still be able to post, but your posts will be reviewed before being permitted on the board.

This is not because of your theological stand, or your jurisdiction.  It's not because you're "Anti-Ecumenist" or "Traditionalist" or anything like that.  It's because you are disrespecting human beings with the manner of your speech.  You have other "traditionalist" brethren who are able to post their true feelings here without being hateful.

If you feel this is in error, please PM me.

- Cleveland, Global Moderator
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« Reply #53 on: December 06, 2007, 07:27:46 PM »

Judgment is only for God not God and GOCTheophan so you don't have the slightest clue what will happen to Ebor after death. I'm sure Ebor has a better chance then me because Ebor holds to the greatest commandment of the Lord which is Love thy neighbor.
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« Reply #54 on: December 06, 2007, 07:33:56 PM »

Silly me I thought the church stated that no one knows who goes to Hell except for God?

What Fathers say this?

The Church and the Bible are quite clear on what type of people will be damned.

Theophan.
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« Reply #55 on: December 06, 2007, 07:42:08 PM »

Judgment is only for God not God and GOCTheophan so you don't have the slightest clue what will happen to Ebor after death. I'm sure Ebor has a better chance then me because Ebor holds to the greatest commandment of the Lord which is Love thy neighbor.

He belongs to a "Church" that supports women in their "chioce" to have jewish doctors rip out their unborn babies before they are even born?

Thats Love?

Ad hominem removed.  - Cleveland, Global Moderator

Theophan.

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« Reply #56 on: December 06, 2007, 07:45:37 PM »

Again GOC if you could please look at your accusations and see that it is the individuals that do these terrible deeds not Ebor and next please give me some sources to see the validity of these statements. Next on the fathers there opinions do not make dogma and secondly they are talking about what happens you do not know what is in Ebor's heart to damn him to hell.
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The sins I don't commit are largely due to the weakness of my limbs.

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« Reply #57 on: December 06, 2007, 08:05:48 PM »

I would like to highly commend GOCTheophan for his spiritual/mystical insight into Anglicanism. We truly "do not fight against flesh and blood but against the powers of the air."

Btw Theophan, I didnt mean for my remark about the Queen to be a joke, but only a realization of the absurdity of having a secular monarch as the head of their church. None of my derogative comments get through the moderation system.
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« Reply #58 on: December 06, 2007, 08:05:49 PM »

you do not know what is in Ebor's heart to damn him to hell.

Where was I damning him to hell?

Are you seriously saying that Baptism is not necessary to rise through the toll houses?

Theophan.
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« Reply #59 on: December 06, 2007, 08:14:50 PM »

Are you seriously saying that Baptism is not necessary to rise through the toll houses?

I was unaware the toll houses were anything more than theologoumena.
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« Reply #60 on: December 06, 2007, 08:18:40 PM »

Ebor's worthy baptism seems to have borne a lot greater fruit of charity than yours has, GOCTheophan.
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« Reply #61 on: December 06, 2007, 08:38:19 PM »

What Fathers say this?

The Church and the Bible are quite clear on what type of people will be damned.

Theophan.

From the writings of Abba Dorotheos:

A certain elder heard that one brother had fallen into lust, said, "Oh!  He did evil."  At once appeared before him an angel holding the soul of the brother who sinned, and said "The one you have judged has died!  Where do you direct therefore that I take him, to paradise or to hell?"  In other words, it was as if the angel said to him "Since you are the judge of the just and the sinners, tell me, what do you direct for this soul?  Do you give it grace or condemnation?"

At these words the holy elder trembled.  He fell immediately with his face at the feet of the angel and wished forgiveness.  And (the angel) replied to him: "There, God has shown you how serious it is to judge.  Don't do it again."

- Abba Dorotheos, "Works of Asceticism", "Etoimasia", Monastery of St. John the Forerunner Karea, Athens 1991.
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« Reply #62 on: December 06, 2007, 09:40:30 PM »

From the writings of Abba Dorotheos:

A certain elder heard that one brother had fallen into lust, said, "Oh!  He did evil."  At once appeared before him an angel holding the soul of the brother who sinned, and said "The one you have judged has died!  Where do you direct therefore that I take him, to paradise or to hell?"  In other words, it was as if the angel said to him "Since you are the judge of the just and the sinners, tell me, what do you direct for this soul?  Do you give it grace or condemnation?"

At these words the holy elder trembled.  He fell immediately with his face at the feet of the angel and wished forgiveness.  And (the angel) replied to him: "There, God has shown you how serious it is to judge.  Don't do it again."

- Abba Dorotheos, "Works of Asceticism", "Etoimasia", Monastery of St. John the Forerunner Karea, Athens 1991.

I think GOCTheophan is merely pointing out the general principle that there is "No Salvation Outside The Orthodox Church" which historically excludes Roman Catholics and Anglicans. I dont think he is trying to set himself up as a *judge* over any individual soul.

Cleveland- if we take your above quote literally then we could never acknowledge that an individual is in sin. Scripture commands us to acknowledge that a brother is in sin, firstly to correct him or to take the situation to authorities, and secondly so that we know to stay away from him. My take of the quote is that the abba did more than acknowledge that one is in sin and rather crossed the line into trying to function as judge over a soul. Thats a crucial distinction.
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« Reply #63 on: December 06, 2007, 10:57:40 PM »

He probably stands a better chance of ultimate Salvation than members of OCA who have none at all but still lets face it...what are the chances of his repentence? What are the chances of his being able to embrace the Truth when faced with it and not cling to the demons of Anglicanism unto the Ages? He has had access to the Truth and he has rejected it.

Theophan.



Just to set the context for everyone else: I don't agree with the principles of the OCA, which is why after graduating from an OCA Seminary, I joined the GOC. I am in the same Church as GOCTheophan, although different dioceses, for full disclosure. And in addition, I consider Theophan a friend, because on a personal level, I get along with him well and we have good discussions.

That being said...

The statements I have bolded are not teachings of the GOC, and are in my personal opinion, presumptuous at best, heretical at worst.

No one can say where the Spirit of God is.  Sacramentally, yes, it can be defined. But not charismatically. And Christ can save whom he wills.

I furthermore do not agree with Ebor's choice to remain an Anglican, after so many years of seeing that communion deteriorate. I don't understand it. However, I know Ebor. I met Ebor and Ebor's spouse in person. They have integrity. They are prayerful people. Ebor does not deserve this level of personal attack. Despite our disagreements, I think Ebor and I can agree in principles such as: integrity, an eirinic spirit, backing up our beliefs with facts, no hysteria, etc. And I would encourage you to participate as well in this way.

So my friend Theophan, my brother and co-religionist, I entreat you to please, for the love of God, stop posting this way on this forum. Leave the judgment to God, and instead bring people over to our God-pleasing fight against modernism by witnessing the truth in charity.

Anastasios
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« Reply #64 on: December 07, 2007, 12:21:51 AM »

beautifully stated anastasios
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« Reply #65 on: December 07, 2007, 06:46:32 AM »

Ebor,

Greetings once again!  Wow,  a lot has happened since my last posting!


Ultimate is not the same as only.  And it is clear since there are writings and teachings in other Churches that more then the Bible is used.  But we've gone over this already. Please forgive me, but I'm not sure why you would keep on the subject of Sola Scriptura when it doesn't apply to Anglicans (that being the subject of the thread.)  I'm not going to change and say that it does.  Smiley


Sorry, I didn't mean to focus on this.  My Anglican friend oddly holds the Hooker 3-legged stool position, yet at the same time, he doesn't like when I deny sola scriptura.   So, that may explain part of my repetition on this topic.  I'll drop it.  I'll also drop discussion about what most Protestants believe.  I must disagree with Prodromas that I do not have an understanding of the "diversity of Protestantism."  On the contrary, having gone to many different types of Protestant services, I think I have a better understanding than many Protestants, frankly.  Its kind of like who knows more about America: one who has live there his whole life or a long-term immigrant? 

Nevertheless, I do think Prodromas has a point in that the topic of this thread is to understand more about what Anglicans believe, which is what I want to know.   You know, discussions sometimes go a bit astray.  Hope you
are not offended; that wasn't my intent.    I'll try to stick to the topic (but make no guarantees Smiley).

I have more questions . . . so, if you please:

I know the Church of England uses the term "Vicar" to describe priests--or it is bishops?  But when I was attending the Episcopal Church (now an Anglican Church), I don't think they used that title.  As I'm sure you know, Orthodox are not thrilled with the term "Vicar of Christ" as Rome uses it.  How do Anglicans mean by the use the "V word"?

Also, how is Anglo-Catholic different from High Church Anglican?  (I have an idea, but I trust your opinion about this more than mine!)

Thanks!
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« Reply #66 on: December 07, 2007, 07:16:47 AM »

As I'm sure you know, Orthodox are not thrilled with the term "Vicar of Christ" as Rome uses it.  How do Anglicans mean by the use the "V word"?
A "Vicar" in the Church of England was originally a priest supplied to a parish Church by a monastery. This priest acted on behalf of (i.e. "Vicariously for")  the monastery.
In modern England, the word "vicar" was retained and is mostly used in urban areas, while "rector" is used in rural areas.
Also, it should be noted that the Russian Orthodox Church also uses the term "Vicar" ("викарий") to describe what is called an "Auxilary Bishop" in the Greek Orthodox Church.
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« Reply #67 on: December 07, 2007, 10:05:28 AM »

From the writings of Abba Dorotheos:

A certain elder heard that one brother had fallen into lust, said, "Oh!  He did evil."  At once appeared before him an angel holding the soul of the brother who sinned, and said "The one you have judged has died!  Where do you direct therefore that I take him, to paradise or to hell?"  In other words, it was as if the angel said to him "Since you are the judge of the just and the sinners, tell me, what do you direct for this soul?  Do you give it grace or condemnation?"

At these words the holy elder trembled.  He fell immediately with his face at the feet of the angel and wished forgiveness.  And (the angel) replied to him: "There, God has shown you how serious it is to judge.  Don't do it again."

- Abba Dorotheos, "Works of Asceticism", "Etoimasia", Monastery of St. John the Forerunner Karea, Athens 1991.

"Several brothers once visited Abba Agathon, for they had been informed that he was possessed of great spiritual discretion. And wishing to test him, to see if he would become angry, they said: "Are you Agathon? We have heard about you that you are debauched and proud." He replied, "Yes, it is so." They said to him once more, "Are you Agathon the loose-tongued lover of slander?" "I am he," he responded. And the visitors spoke to him a third time, "You are Agathon, the heretic?" To this, he answered, "I am not a heretic." After this answer, they asked him to explain: "Why, when we called you so many things, did you admit them, while you would not, however, endure the accusation that you were a heretic?" And the Abba said to them: "The first things I accepted since they were beneficial for my soul; but not the accusation that I am a heretic, since heresy is separation from God." On hearing this reply, the visitors marvelled at the spiritual discretion of the Abba and departed, benefitted in soul."
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Translatored by Hm. Patapios &
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- St. Ignatius the Godbearer, Hieromartyr of Antioch
[ Epistle to the Trallians ]
"Just as the fishermen hide the hook with bait and covertly hook the fish, similarly, the crafty allies of the heresies cover their evil teachings and corrupt understanding with pietism and hook the more simple, bringing them to spiritual death"
- St. Isidore of Pelusium
[Letter to Timothy the Reader,
Patrologia Graeca 78, 252C]
"In The Spiritual Meadow of St. John Moschus, we read:
"Once a monk called Theophan came to see the great elder Kyriakos..." (He tells the elder that in his country he is in contact with Nestorians whereupon) "the elder begins to try to convince the monk of his error and to pray that he abandon that fatal heresy and join himself to the holy catholic and apostolic Church."
"'It is impossible to be saved ('without right belief).'" (The monk is interested and the elder offers him his cell saying:)
"'I have hope that God in His mercy will reveal the truth to you.'"
"And leaving the monk in his cave, the elder set out for the Dead Sea, praying for the monk as he went. And indeed the next day about the ninth hour the monk sees someone, strange in appearance, who says to him, 'Come and find out the truth.' And taking him he leads him to a gloomy, stinking place emitting flames and shows him Nestorius and Theodore (of Mopsuestia), Eutyches and Apollonarius, Evagrius and Didymus, Dioscorus and Severus, Arius and Origen, and others. And pointing at them he says to the monk, 'That is the place prepared for heretics and those who taught falsely about the Mother of God and those who follow their teachings. If you do not want to taste the same punishment turn to the holy catholic and apostolic Church to which the elder who is instructing you belongs. I tell you: even though a man be adorned with all the works of charity, but does not have right belief he will find himself in that place.'
"With these words the monk came to himself. When the elder returned the monk told him everything that he had seen and in a short time joined himself to the holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. Staying in the monastery of Kalamon he lived with the elder for some years and died in peace.""
-St. John Moscus
[ Spiritual Meadow ; cited in
"Commentary on the Latest
Recommendations of the 'Joint Commision
For Theological Dialogue Between
the Orthodox And Oriental Churches'",
Orthodox Life , vol. 42, no. 3 (May-June 1991),
pp. 5-18.; quotation appears on p. 17]
Anyone That Would Be Saved Must Depart From Heresy and Join the True Orthodox Church:
"One might say much more against this detestable and antichristian heresy...But...in order that our words may not be too many, it will be well to content ourselves with the divine Scripture, and that we all obey the precept which it has been given us both in regard to other heresies, and especially respecting this. That precept is as follows; `Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of them, and be ye separate, that bear the vessels of the Lord' This may suffice to instruct us all, so that if any one has been deceived by them, he may go out from them, as out of Sodom, and not return again unto them, lest he suffer the fate of Lot's wife; and if any one has continued from the beginning pure from this impious thing, heresy, he may glory in Christ and say, `We have not stretched out our hands to a strange god; neither have we worshipped the works of our own hands, nor served the creature more than Thee, the God that hast created all things through Thy word, the Only-Begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom to Thee the Father together with the same Word in the Holy Spirit be glory and power for ever and ever. Amen."
- St. Athanasius the Great, Patriarch of Alexandria
[ History of the Arians , 80]
"Abba Theodore used to say, "If thou hast affection for a man, and it happeneth that he fall into temptation, stretch out thy hand to him, and lift him up therefrom, but if he fall into heresy, and will not be persuaded by thee to return, cut him off from thee immediately, lest, if thou tarry long with him, thou be drawn unto him, and thou sink down into the uttermost depths."
- Abba Theodore, Desert Father
[ Sayings of the Desert Fathers , 315]
If We Are In Communion With Heretics, We Likewise Will Perish:
"As for all those who pretend to confess sound Orthodox Faith, but are in communion with people who hold a different opinion, if they are forewarned and still remain stubborn, you must not only not be in communion with them, but you must not even call them brothers."
- St. Basil the Great, Archbishop of Caesaria in Cappodocia
(*Patrologia Orientalis*, Vol. 17, p. 303)
"Another thing the blessed man taught and insisted upon with all was never on any occasion whatsoever to associate with heretics and, above all, never to take the Holy Communion with them, 'even if', the blessed man said, 'you remain without communicating all your life, if through stress of circumstances you cannot find a community of the catholic Church. For if, having legally married a wife in this world of the flesh, we are forbidden by God and by the laws to desert her and be united to another woman, even though we have to spend a long time separated from her in a distant country, and shall incur punishment if we violate our vows, how then shall we, who have been joined to God through the Orthodox faith and the catholic Church -- as the apostle says: "I espoused you to one husband that I might present you as a pure virgin to Christ" (2 Cor. 11:2) -- how shall we escape from sharing in that punishment which in the world to come awaits heretics, if we defile the orthodox and holy faith by adulterous communion with heretics?'
For 'communion', he said, 'has been so called because he who has "communion" has things in common and agrees with those with whom he has "communion". Therefore I implore you earnestly, children, never to go near the oratories of the heretics in order to communicate there.'"
-St. John the Almsgiver, Patriarch of Alexandria (7th Century AD)
[ Three Byzantine Saints , "The Life of Saint John the Almsgiver",
Translators: Elizabeth Dawes & Norman H. Baynes,
St. Vladimir's Seminary Press, Crestwood: 1977; p. 251]
"With all our strength let us beware lest we receive Communion from or give it to heretics. 'Give not what is holy to the dogs,' says the Lord. 'Neither cast ye your pearls before swine', lest we become partakers in their dishonour and condemnation."
- St. John of Damascus [ An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith , IV, 13]
"Even if one should give away all his possessions in the world, and yet be in communion with heresy, he cannot be a friend of God, but is rather an enemy."
- St. Theodore the Studite
(PG 99, 1205)
"Chrysostomos loudly declares not only heretics, but also those who have communion with them, to be enemies of God."
- St. Theodore the Studite
[ Epistle to Abbot Theophilus ]
"Guard yourselves from soul-destroying heresy, communion with which is alienation from Christ."
-St. Theodore the Studite
[P.G. 99.1216.]
"The heretics were totally shipwrecked with regard to the Faith; but as for the others, even if in their thinking they did not founder, nevertheless, because of their communion with heresy they are perishing."
- St. Theodore the Studite
[Patrologia Graeca 99, 1164]
We Must Abandon Bishops That Are Heretics Or Are In Communion With Them:
"As we walk the unerring and life-bringing path, let us pluck out the eye that scandalizes us, not the physical eye, but the noetic one. For example, if a bishop ... who is the eyes of the Church conduct himself in an evil manner and scandalize the people, he must be plucked out. For it is more profitable to gather without him in a house of prayer, than to be cast together with him into the gehenna of fire together with Annas and Caiaphas."
- Saint Athanasius the Great, Patriarch of Alexandria
(Migne PG 26, 1257 C)
"Do not err, my brethren. Those that corrupt families shall not inherit the kingdom of God. And if those that corrupt mere human families are condemned to death, how much more shall those suffer everlasting punishment who endeavour to corrupt the Church of Christ, for which the Lord Jesus, the only-begotten Son of God, endured the Cross, and submitted to death! Whosoever, "being waxen fat," and "become gross," sets at nought His doctrine, shall go into gehenna. In like manner, every one that has received from God the power of distinguishing, and yet follows an unskillful shepherd, and receives a false opinion for the truth, shall be punished. "What communion hath light with darkness? or Christ with Belial? Or what portion hath he that believeth with an infidel? or the temple of God with idols? "And in like manner say I, what communion hath truth with falsehood? or righteousness with unrighteousness? or true doctrine with that which is false? For this end did the Lord suffer the ointment to be poured upon His head, that His Church might breathe forth immortality. For saith [the Scripture], "Thy name is as ointment poured forth; therefore have the virgins loved Thee; they have drawn Thee; at the odour of Thine ointments we will run after Thee." Let no one be anointed with the bad odour of the doctrine of [the prince of] this world; let not the holy Church of God be led captive by his subtlety, as was the first woman. Why do we not, as gifted with reason, act wisely? When we had received from Christ, and had grafted in us the faculty of judging concerning God, why do we fall headlong into ignorance? and why, through a careless neglect of acknowledging the gift which we have received, do we foolishly perish?"
- St. Ignatius the Godbearer, Hieromartyr of Antioch
[ Epistle to the Ephesians ]
"How then does Paul say, 'Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves'? (Heb. 13:17) After having said before, 'Whose faith follow, considering the end of their life' (Heb. 13:7), he then said, 'Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves'. What then (you say), when he is wicked, should we obey? Wicked? In what sense? If indeed in regard to matters of the Faith, flee and avoid him; not only if he be a man, but even if he be an angel come down from Heaven; but if in regard to his life, be not overly-curious."
-St. John Chrysostom, Archbishop of Constantinople (4th Century AD)
[ Homily Thirty-Four on the Epistle to the Hebrews ]
"Is the shepherd a heretic? Then he is a wolf! You must flee from him; do not be deceived to approach him even if he appears gentle and tame. Flee from communion and conversation with him even as you would flee from a poisonous snake."
- St. Photius the Great, Patriarch of Constantinople
[ Homily Fifteen , 10]
Numbers And Official Titles Do Not Matter,
Only the Sound Confession of the Orthodox Faith;
Those Who Remain True Cannot Be Condemned,
But Rather Receive Salvation:
"'That thou mayest know,' he says, 'how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.' Not like that Jewish house. For it is this that maintains the Faith and the preaching of the Word. For the truth is the pillar and the ground of the Church."
- St. John Chrysostom
Homily XI on the First Epistle to St. Timothy, commenting on verse 3:15
"They that are of the Church of Christ are they that are of the truth; and they that are not of the truth are not of the Church of Christ...for we are reminded that we are to distinguish Christianity not by persons, who have ecclesiastical titles*, but by the truth and by the exactness of the Faith." *[e.g. 'Patriarch of Constantinople', etc.]
- St. Gregory Palamas, Archbishop and Wonderworker of Thessalonika
[ Collected Works , II, 627, pp.10-16]
Even if false hierarchs, while being in heresy, "will succeed in deceiving and enticing a certain number of ignorant ones and in gathering even a considerable number of followers, then they are outside the sacred walls of the Church just the same. But even if very few remain in Orthodoxy and piety, they are in the Church, and the authority and the protection of the ecclesiastical institution resides in them. And if they should suffer for true piety, then this will undoubtedly contribute to their eternal glory and salvation of their souls."
- St. Nicephorus the Confessor [ PG 100, 844D]
"I exhort you, therefore, not to faint in your afflictions, but to be revived by God's love, and to add daily to your zeal knowing that in you ought to be preserved that remnant of true religion which the Lord will find when He cometh on the earth. Even if bishops are driven from their Churches, be not dismayed. If traitors have arisen from among the very clergy themselves, let not this undermine your confidence in God. We are saved not by names, but by mind and purpose, and genuine love toward our Creator. Bethink you how in the attack against our Lord, high priests and scribes and elders devised the plot, and how few of the people were found really receiving the word. Remember that it is not the multitude who are being saved, but the elect of God. Be not then affrighted at the great multitude of the people who are carried hither and thither by winds like the waters of the sea. If but one would be saved, like Lot at Sodom, he ought to abide in right judgment, keeping his hope in Christ unshaken, for the Lord will not forsake His holy ones. Salute all the brethren in Christ from me. Pray earnestly for my miserable soul."
-St. Basil the Great
[ Epistle CCLVII,
To the Monks Harassed by Arians ]
"It is your prerogative to prefer the drowned multitude to Noah who was saved; but as for me, allow me to run to the Ark along with the few." "One who is well-pleasing to God is to be preferred over myriads who are invested with presumption."
- Saint Theodore the Studite
[PG 99, 1081C; PG 99, 1084A]
"Let us not raise a stumbling-block for the Church of God which, according to the teaching of the Saints, is made up of even three Orthodox, so that we may not be condemned according to the Lord's verdict."
- Saint Theodore the Studite
[ Epistle to Abbot Theophilus , PG 99, 1049C.]
"When Saint Hypatius understood what opinions Nestorius held, immediately, in the Church of the Apostles, he erased his name from the diptychs, so that it should no longer be pronounced at the Oblation. [This was before Nestorius' condemnation by the Third Ecumenical Council.] "When Bishop Eulalius learned of this, he was anxious about the outcome of the affair. And seeing that it had been noised abroad, Nestorius also ordered him to reprimand Hypatius. For Nestorius was still powerful in the city. Bishop Eulalius spoke thus to Hypatius: Why have you erased his name without understanding what the consequences would be? Saint Hypatius replied: From the time that I learned that he said unrighteous things about the Lord, I have no longer been in communion with him and I do not commemorate his name; for he is not a bishop. Then the bishop, in anger, said: Be off with you! Make amends for what you have done, for I shall take measures against you. Saint Hypatius replied: Do as you wish. As for me, I have decided to suffer anything, and it is with this in mind that I have done this."
- From the Life of Saint Hypatius (Sources Chretiennes, No.177, pp. 210-214)
"Of old the anathema was fearful and something to be avoided when it was imposed by the preachers of piety upon those who were guilty of impiety. But ever since the daring and insolent mindlessness of the pernicious contrary to every divine and human law and contrary to every way of thinking, both Greek and barbarian, became so insanely arrogant as to turn the anathema, which they deserved, back on the proponents of Orthodoxy, and as they bickered, in their barbarian frenzy, to accomplish their ecclesiastical transgression, then that fearful and last extremity of all penalties became degraded into a myth and a joke, or rather it became even desirable to the pious. Certainly, it is not the utterly presumptuous opinion of the enemies of truth that makes penalties (especially ecclesiastical penalties) fearful, but rather the culpability of those who are condemned; for guiltlessness changes their punishments into a mockery, and turns their condemnations back upon them, and results in undefiled crowns and immortal glory, rather than condemnation, for him who is castigated by them. Therefore, all the pious and holy prefer to be reviled myriads of times by those who are alienated from Christ rather than, with splendid acclamations, to have communion with their Christ-hating and God-hating villainies."
- St. Photius the Great
[Letter to Ignatius, Metropolitan of Claudiopolis,
PG 102, 833 A-C]
"For a long span of time, every heretical council and every assembly of the Iconoclasts anathematized us (and not only us, but our father and our uncle also men who were confessors of Christ and the lustre of the hierarchy); but by anathematizing us, they caused that we be raised, though unwilling, to the archiepiscopal throne. Therefore let those who, together with the former, have irrationally strayed from the Master's commandments and have thrown wide open the gate of all iniquity, anathematize us even now so that they may raise us, though faltering, from earth to the Heavenly Kingdom."
- St. Photius the Great
[Letter Sixty-four to Gregory,
the deacon and archivist,
PG 102, 877 B-C]
To Deviate A 'little' Or ' A Lot' In Regard To The Faith Is Equally Sin Unto Death
"The fact that we do not become indignant over small matters is the cause of all our calamities; and because slight errors escape fitting correction, greater ones creep in. As in a body, a neglect of wounds generates fever, infection and death; so in the soul, slight evils overlooked open the door to graver ones . . . But if a proper rebuke had at first been given to those who attempted to depart from the divine sayings and change some small matter, such a pestilence would not have been generated, nor such a storm have seized upon the Church; for he that overturns even that which is minor in the sound Faith, will cause ruin in all."
-St. John Chrysostom
[Homily One on the Epistle to the Galatians]
"To sin in respect of the dogmas whether in small or great is the same thing; for the law of God is disregarded in either case."
- St. Tarasius of Constantinople
[1st Act of the 7th Holy Ecumenical Council;
cited in The Pedalion {The Rudder},
tr. D. Cummings, p.775]
"It is incumbent upon everyone to observe the letter of all that is common to all, and, above all, the points touching the Faith, where to deviate a little is to commit a sin unto death."
- St. Photius the Great, Patriarch of Constantinople
[ Epistle to Pope Nicholas of Rome ;
cited in The Rudder ,
D. Cummings translation,
pp. 775-776]
Everyone Is Called To This Struggle;
One Cannot Simply Be 'Orthodox In One's Heart', While Apostatizing by Silence Outwardly
"Not only if one possesses rank or knowledge is one obliged to strive to speak and to teach the doctrines of Orthodoxy, but even if one be a disciple in rank, one is obliged to speak the truth boldly and openly."
-Saint Theodore the Studite
[ Letter Two (Book Two) to Monastics ,
(PG 99, 1120 B)]
"It is a commandment of the Lord that we should not be silent when the Faith is in peril. So, when it is a matter of the Faith, one cannot say, 'Who am I? A priest, a ruler, a soldier, a farmer, a poor man? I have no say or concern in this matter.' Alas! The stones shall cry out, and you remain silent and unconcerned?"
- Saint Theodore the Studite
[ Epistle Eighty-One ,
(PG 99, 1321 AB)]
"Many people were being irrational by trying to convince the martyr to deny Christ with his words only, and keep his faith in his soul, in his inner disposition, claiming that God does not pay attention to our words but to our disposition. However, Gordios the Martyr was rigid in his belief and replied, "The tongue, which is created by Christ, cannot bear to utter anything against Him... Do not deceive yourselves, God cannot be mocked, He judges us according to our own mouth, He justifies us by our words, and by our words, He convicts us".
- St. Basil the Great
[ Homily on Gordius, the Martyr ]
There Can No Peace or Common God With Those of Another Faith; To Allege This Is Heresy
St. Gregory of Nyssa writes in regard of peace with heresy that "better is a laudable war than a peace which severs a man from God." "For disagreement over piety is better than emotional concord."
-St. Gregory of Nyssa
Oration 2.82 (In Defense of his Flight to Pontus; PG 35:488C);
and Oration 6.11 (First Eirenic; PG 35:736AB):
"Live in peace not only with your friends but with your enemies; but only with your personal enemies and not with the enemies of God."
- St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves (+1074)
"Beware, my son, of heretics and all their talking, for our land too, has become filled with them! If anyone will save his soul, it will be only through life in the Orthodox Faith. For there is no better faith, than our Holy Orthodox Faith. My son, it is not meet to praise another's faith. Whoever praises an alien faith is like a detractor of his own Orthodox Faith. If anyone should praise his own and another's faith, then he is a man of dual faith and is close to heresy. If anyone should say to you: "your faith and our faith is from God", you, my son, should reply: "Heretic! do you consider God to be of two faiths? Don't you hear what the Scriptures say: "One Lord, one Faith, one Baptism" (Eph. 4,5). Thus, my son, beware of such people and always stand up for your Faith. Do not fraternize with them, but avoid them and pursue your own Faith with good deeds!" "My son, even if there would be the need for you to die for your holy Faith, dare to embrace death! Thus the Saints died for their Faith, and now they are alive in Christ."
- St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves Lavra (+1074)
[From his "Testament" to the Great Prince
Izyaslav of Kiev (1054-1068) whom the Papists
attempted to convert to their delusion
[I.P. Yeremin, "The Literary Heritage of Theodosius
of the Kiev Caves Lavra", TODRL,
1947, vol. 5, p. 171-172.]

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« Reply #68 on: December 07, 2007, 10:06:25 AM »

TO JUDGE OR NOT TO JUDGE

 

If the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

I Peter 4.18.

 

     “Judge not, that ye be not judged” (Matthew 7.1) – we all know this very important commandment of the Lord. We know what it means: to express condemnation of a person with hatred or derision. And we know, if we are honest with ourselves, that we very often sin against it… However, the word “judge” has many meanings in the English language; and there is a tendency to use the commandment not to judge in this sense as an excuse for inaction, as a stick with which to suppress dissident opinions, and even, sometimes, as an argument in favour of ecumenism. Let us look at these different meanings.

 

     First, it is important not to confuse judging in the sense of passionate condemnation with rebuking or reproving. Blessed Theophylact writes: “He forbids condemning others, but not reproving others. A reproof is for another’s benefit, but condemnation expresses only derision and scorn. You may also understand that the Lord is speaking of one who, despite his own great sins, condemns others who have lesser sins of which God will be the judge.that is, the toll-houses]. The unbelievers do not come here. Their souls belong to hell even before they part from their bodies. When they die, the devils take their souls with no need to test them. Such souls are their proper prey, and they take them down to the abyss."[3]

 

     Someone may argue: “Even if an unbaptized person cannot enter the Kingdom of heaven, that does not mean that he is in hell.” To this we reply: “There are only two places a soul can go to after death: heaven or hell (hades). So if he is not in heaven, he must be in hell. There is no third possibility, since the Orthodox do not believe like the Latins in purgatory or any such place.”

 

*

 

     It will be useful to test these conclusions by reference to an article by Archimandrite (Metropolitan) Philaret of blessed memory entitled “Will the Heterodox be Saved?the Christians]? Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? And if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?” (6.1-2). Or, as Bishop Theophan puts it: “Having spoken about the inner Church court in spiritual matters, the apostle wishes that everyday matters also should be examined by the Christians themselves without taking them to pagan courts… If court justice is necessary, then they must seek it before righteous people – the holy Christians… The Christians are holy, and by their example of faith and love they will be the accusers of the impious world at the Judgement of Christ, so are they really unworthy now to examine their own affairs that are of little importance?” (p. 146)

 

     We may conclude that this passage is not relevant to the question whether it is right or wrong to say that heretics go to hell. For the context is not sins against the faith, but moral sins, and the “judging” in question is not passionate condemnation, but the taking of a sinner to trial in an ecclesiastical or civil court. Moreover, the only kind of “judging” that the apostle is explicitly condemning is the taking of pagans to trial in a civil court.

 

     2. The metropolitan continues: “In attempting to answer this question [can the heterodox be saved?], it is necessary, first of all, to recall that in His Gospel the Lord Jesus Christ Himself mentions but one state of the human soul which unfailingly leads to perdition – i.e. blasphemy against the Holy Spirit (Matthew 12.1-32). The same text makes it clear that even blasphemy against the Son of Man – i.e. the Lord Jesus Christ, the incarnate Son of God Himself may be forgiven men, as it may be uttered in error or in ignorance and, subsequently may be covered by conversion and repentance (an example of such a converted and repentant blasphemer is the Apostle Paul. (See Acts 26.11 and I Timothy 1.13.) If, however, a man opposes the Truth which he clearly apprehends by his reason and conscience, he becomes blind and commits spiritual suicide, for he thereby likens himself to the devil, who believes in God and dreads Him, yet hates, blasphemes and opposes Him.

 

     “Thus, man’s refusal to accept the Divine Truth and his opposition thereto makes him a son of damnation. Accordingly, in sending His disciples to preach, the Lord told them: ‘He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned’ (Mark 16.16), for the latter heard the Lord’s Truth and was called upon to accept it, yet refused, thereby inheriting the damnation of those who ‘believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness’ (II Thessalonians 2.12).

 

     “The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition. Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition. The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matthew 18.17) and of the Apostle Paul (Galatians 1.8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold. It is self-evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be considered renegades or heretics – i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth… They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy. The Lord ‘Who will have all men to be saved’ (I Timothy 2.4), and ‘Who enlightens every man born into the world’ (John 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation in His own way.”

 

     Confusion may be caused by the holy metropolitan’s unusual and somewhat paradoxical definition of the word “heretic”, which is much narrower than the usual definition. The usual definition is very simple: a heretic is a person who believes a heretical teaching, that is, a teaching contrary to the Orthodox Faith – regardless of whether he was brought up in the truth or not, or has consciously renounced Orthodoxy or not. “Sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members of other non-Orthodox confessions” are heretics, according to this definition. They are not as guilty as those who have known the truth but have personally and consciously renounced it, who are not only heretics but also apostates (renegades). But they are nevertheless in error, heterodox rather than Orthodox, and therefore cannot receive the sanctification that comes from the knowledge of the truth (John 17.18).

 

     However, this difference in the definition of the word “heretic” does not affect the validity of the metropolitan’s main point, which may be formulated as follows:

 

     3. We may be certain that at the Last Judgement the lot of those who have known the truth but have consciously rejected it will be worse than those who have remained in error out of ignorance.

 

     This third major conclusion of ours in no way contradicts the first two. All heretics in the usual sense of the word will go to hell (hades) after death because they do not know the truth and have not received the baptism by water and the Spirit that alone, according to the Lord’s infallible word, delivers a soul from hades and brings it into the Kingdom of Heaven. However, those who have been brought up in error and have never been confronted with the truth, and therefore never rejected the truth personally and consciously, are much more likely to attract the mercy of God at the Last Judgement, and so be delivered from the eternal fire, than those who, having known the truth and been baptized in it, have consciously rejected it.

 

     Some may interpret the metropolitan’s words to mean that “sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members of other non-Orthodox confessions” can be saved in the sense that they can go to Paradise immediately after death. But the metropolitan does not say that (and if he had said that, we would be forced to come to the conclusion that he, the author of the renowned 1983 anathema against ecumenism, was an ecumenist!). Rather, he is speaking about salvation at the Last Judgement, a different matter, about which we can say much less with certainty...

 

*

 

     Finally, it may be useful to say a few more words about the word “ignorance” in this context. Ignorance - real, involuntary ignorance - is certainly grounds for clemency according to God's justice, as it is according to man's. The Lord cried out on the Cross: "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do" (Luke 23.24); and one of those who were forgiven declared: "I obtained mercy because I acted in ignorance” (I Timothy 1.13; cf. Acts 3.17, 17.30). For our Great High Priest is truly One "Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way" (Hebrews 5.2).

 

     However, there is also such a thing as wilful, voluntary ignorance. Thus St. Paul says of those who do not believe in the one God, the Creator of heaven and earth, that "they are without excuse" (Romans 1.20), for they deny the evidence from creation which is accessible to everyone. Again, St. Peter says: "This they are willingly ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgement and perdition of ungodly men" (II Peter 3.5-7). Again, claiming knowledge when one has none counts as wilful ignorance. For, as Christ said to the Pharisees: "If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth" (John 9.41).

 

     Wilful ignorance is very close to conscious resistance to the truth, which receives the greatest condemnation according to the Word of God. Thus those who accept the Antichrist will do so "because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.” (II Thessalonians 2.10). Wilful ignorance is therefore the same as the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which we have already discussed. Metropolitan Philaret’s definition of this sin is essentially the same as that of Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky), who in turn follows the definition of the Seventh Ecumenical Council: “Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, or 'sin unto death', according to the explanation of the Seventh Ecumenical Council (VIII, 75), is a conscious, hardened opposition to the truth, 'because the Spirit is truth' (I John 5.6).9]To whom does this distinction apply? St. Cyril applies it to false teachers and parents, on the one hand, and those who follow them, on the other. In other words, the blind leaders will receive a greater condemnation than the blind followers - which is not to say, however, that they will not both fall into the pit (Matthew 15.14). For, as Bishop Nicholas Velimirovich writes: "Are the people at fault if godless elders and false prophets lead them onto foreign paths? The people are not at fault to as great an extent as their elders and the false prophets, but they are at fault to some extent. For God gave to the people also to know the right path, both through their conscience and through the preaching of the word of God, so that people should not blindly have followed their blind guides, who led them by false paths that alienated them from God and His Laws."[10]

 

     The ecumenists often bring up the example of the Hindus and Buddhists and others who have lived their whole lives in non-Christian communities. Can they be said to be wilfully ignorant of the truth? Of course, only God knows the degree of ignorance in any particular case. However, even if the heathen have more excuse than the Christians who deny Christ, they cannot be said to be completely innocent; for no one is completely deprived of the knowledge of the One God. Thus St. Jeromewrites: "Ours and every other race of men knows God naturally. There are no peoples who do not recognise their Creator naturally.14]

 

     Thus there is a light that "enlightens every man who comes into the world" (John 1.9). And if there are some who reject that light, abusing that freewill which God will never deprive them of, this is not His fault, but theirs. As St. John Chrysostom says, "If there are some who choose to close the eyes of their mind and do not want to receive the rays of that light, their darkness comes not from the nature of the light, but from their own darkness in voluntarily depriving themselves of that gift."[15]If the Light of Christ enlightens everyone, then there is no one who cannot come to the True Faith, however unpromising his situation. If a man follows the teachers that are given to everyone, creation and conscience, then the Providence of God, with Whom "all things are possible" (Matthew 19.26), will lead him to the teacher that is given at the beginning only to a few - "the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the Truth" (I Timothy 3.15). For "it is not possible," writes St. John Chrysostom, "that one who is living rightly and freed from the passions should ever be overlooked. But even if he happens to be in error, God will quickly draw him over to the truth."[16]Again, St. John Cassian says: "When God sees in us some beginnings of good will, He at once enlightens it, urging it on towards salvation."[17]

 

     This leads us to draw the following further conclusions: 4. The Providence of God is able to bring anyone in any situation to the True Faith and the True Church, providing he loves the truth. Therefore 5. Although we cannot declare with certainty that those who die in unbelief or heresy will be damned forever, neither can we declare that they will be saved because of their ignorance; for they may be alienated from God "through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart" (Ephesians 4.18), and not simply through the ignorance that is caused by external circumstances.

 

     For the Orthodox do not believe in the Roman Catholic concept of “invincible ignorance”. No ignorance that is truly ignorance is invincible – that is, cannot be conquered by the Almighty Providence of God. The only ignorance that God cannot and will not conquer – because to do so would be to violate the free will of man – is the ignorance that is wilful and artificial, being created by man himself through his stubborn refusal to learn the truth.

 

November 1/14, 2007.

[1]The Explanation of Blessed Theophylact of the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew, House Springs, Missouri: Chrysostom Press, 1992, p. 63.

[2] “Prosopolatreia: I Nosos Tou Ierou Imon Agonos”, I Foni tis Orthodoxias, July-August, 2007, pp. 16-17 (in Greek).

[3]Quoted by David Ritchie, "The 'Near-Death Experience'", Orthodox Life, vol. 45, no. 4, July-August, 1995, pp. 22-23.

[4] Metropolitan Philaret, “Will the Heterodox be Saved?”, Orthodox Life, vol. 34, no. 6, November-December, 1984, pp. 33-36.

[5] Bishop Theophan, Tolkovanie Poslanij Sv. Apostola Pavla, Moscow, 1911, 2002, pp. 145-146.

[6]Metropolitan Anthony, "The Church's Teaching about the Holy Spirit", Orthodox Life, vol. 27, no. 3, May-June, 1977, p. 23.

[7] St. Ambrose, On Repentance, II, 24. Cf. St. Augustine, Homily 21 on the New Testament, 28.

[8]St. Theophylact, Explanation of the Gospel according to St. Luke 12.47-48.

[9]St. Cyril, Homily 93 on Luke. Translated by Payne Smith, Studion Publishers, 1983, p. 376.

[10]Bishop Nicholas, The Prologue from Ochrid, Birmingham: Lazarica Press, 1986, vol. II, p. 149.

[11]St. Jerome, Treatise on Psalm 95.

[12]St. Chrysostom, Homily 3 on Romans, 2.

[13]St. Chrysostom, First Homily on Hannah, 3.

[14]The Lives of the Women Martyrs, Buena Vista: Holy Apostles Convent, 1991, pp. 528-542.

[15]St. Chrysostom, Homily 8 on John.

[16]St. Chrysostom, Homily 24 on Matthew, 1.

[17]St. Cassian, Conferences, XIII, 8.

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« Reply #69 on: December 07, 2007, 10:55:22 AM »

who wrote the last article?
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« Reply #70 on: December 07, 2007, 11:36:54 AM »

A "Vicar" in the Church of England was originally a priest supplied to a parish Church by a monastery. This priest acted on behalf of (i.e. "Vicariously for")  the monastery.
In modern England, the word "vicar" was retained and is mostly used in urban areas, while "rector" is used in rural areas.

In the Episcopal Church, on the other hand, it has a somewhat more specific usage, although related to the one George described in England.  The rector is the priest in charge of a church, whether parish or mission.  The diocesan bishop, however, is the rector for all the missions in the diocese.  Since he cannot be at all the missions simultaneously, he appoints a vicar to act for him at each mission church (again, look at George's description of the relation to the word vicariously).  Looking at whether a church has a rector or vicar, then, tells you if its a parish or mission church.
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« Reply #71 on: December 07, 2007, 11:48:53 AM »

In modern England, the word "vicar" was retained and is mostly used in urban areas, while "rector" is used in rural areas.

Though not always.  Wink
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« Reply #72 on: December 07, 2007, 11:55:22 AM »

who wrote the last article?

http://www.orthodoxchristianbooks.com/articles/209/-judge-or-not-judge/

Reader Vladimir Moss.

I would recommend his writings in general though I do have minor points of disagreement with some of them, especially I would recommend his book of the Mystery of the Church to Path of Solitude as it might clear up some of his misunderstandings.

Theophan.

This will be my last post. 

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« Reply #73 on: December 07, 2007, 01:23:52 PM »

As I think Keble and Ebor have explained, originally in England the difference between a rector and a vicar was to do with how he was paid - a rector was paid by the parish. Now the terms are interchangeable there but the distinction remains in the Episcopal Church. The bishop has the final say but a parish hires the rector and pays him; a vicar serves entirely at the pleasure of the bishop and is paid by him (like a Roman Catholic priest). There's also the position of 'priest-in-charge' in both England and America which is like a vicar but canonically a little different.

'The Vicar of Dibley' was middle-brow and sweet like a good-natured American sit-com, a soft-sell of women priests (after that was approved in England in the early 1990s) and the creation of one of the acidic wits behind 'Absolutely Fabulous', English comedienne Dawn French, who also played the part. Except for the odd witty remark, the Revd Geraldine Granger wasn't much like the 'AbFab' girls: she was like Cathy Guisewite's cartoon character in a collar (loving food, worrying about her weight, having crushes on good-looking guys).

Quote
Also, how is Anglo-Catholic different from High Church Anglican?  (I have an idea, but I trust your opinion about this more than mine!)

The two categories overlap but aren't the same.

High Church has meant different things over the centuries. From the 1600s to the mid-1800s it meant somebody who strongly backed both the monarchy/government and the authority of bishops connected to that, with a belief that the Anglican Church was the only legitimate (canonical) church in England. Along with that often were Catholic beliefs or something approaching them about the sacraments like the Eucharist. (Baptismal regeneration is orthodox Anglicanism just like Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism and unlike much of Protestantism.) In this period it didn't really mean ceremonial (there was the odd revival - Lancelot Andrewes used incense).

(In the confusing edits piled upon edits in the Book of Common Prayer in the 1500s and 1600s, there remains a rubric calling for the retention of much mediaeval Catholic ceremonial but it was wiped out in the 1500s, contradicted by later instructions IIRC in the same book.)

Then came Anglo-Catholicism in the mid-1800s, like the old High Churchmen steeped in the Church Fathers (so there was a big intellectual fascination with Orthodoxy), stressing doctrine in common with Rome and Orthodoxy, but again at first not about ceremonial. They worshipped just like other Anglicans.

The 'second wave' of Anglo-Catholics in the mid-late 1800s started bringing back Catholic ceremonial, first trying to re-enact mediaeval English forms, then copying then-current Roman Catholic forms from Europe (including going beyond ceremonial and using RC texts instead of the Book of Common Prayer).

The old High Churchmen who wouldn't go as far as the Anglo-Catholics either in doctrine or ceremony became known as Central Church: concerned with doctrine and authority, and liturgical, but Protestant.

Meanwhile High Church became identified with Catholic ceremonial by the 1900s but there were also non-Anglo-Catholics who did lots of liturgical ceremony. This happened a lot with Central Churchmen in the US.

(For example Washington, DC's National Cathedral has elaborate ceremonies done with military precision but is not Anglo-Catholic.)

Now, since the 1960s, you can find liberals in doctrine (Broad Church) who are high ceremonially.

So put another way all Anglo-Catholics are High Church but not all High Churchmen are Anglo-Catholics.

One thing I've realised is the key difference between Catholics of any kind and all Protestants, conservative and liberal, is the former believe in an infallible church and the latter don't. (Roman Catholics believe the papal office is infallible on some things; Orthodox believe the Orthodox communion with its seven or nine councils is infallible.) I'd say Anglo-Catholics do but most define it in a branch-theory, Vincentian-canon way (that is, what the Romans and the Orthodox have in common), accepting the seven councils commonly held by Orthodoxy as infallible; the latter don't even when they're High Church, holding the creeds and believing the same or similar things about bishops and sacraments as Catholics.

Because Anglo-Catholicism includes holding things in common with Rome and the Eastern churches I'd say ACs don't have women priests. Some Anglicans disagree, having them and claiming to be AC.
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« Reply #74 on: December 07, 2007, 08:06:29 PM »

who wrote the last article?

Who cares?
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« Reply #75 on: December 08, 2007, 12:01:07 PM »

Cleveland- if we take your above quote literally then we could never acknowledge that an individual is in sin. Scripture commands us to acknowledge that a brother is in sin, firstly to correct him or to take the situation to authorities, and secondly so that we know to stay away from him.

No, if you take the quote literally, you come up with the conclusion you draw below:

My take of the quote is that the abba did more than acknowledge that one is in sin and rather crossed the line into trying to function as judge over a soul. Thats a crucial distinction.

Most of us don't acknowledge the sin, we pass judgment as well.  Acknowledging the sin is saying "you're outside the Church, even though we have preached to you, and we strongly believe that there is no salvation outside the Church."  Stating that someone "will go to hell," as a few people here and elsewhere do from time to time, is passing judgment.  Even if one states that "if you don't do X, you'll go to hell" or "if you do Y, you'll go to hell," there is still judgment implied in the sentence, since one's final destination regardless of one's actions on this Earth is ultimately decided on by the Judge - our Lord.  So I can tell you that killing millions of people is a terrible act, and that killing even one person puts one's salvation in jeopardy, I shouldn't tell you that people who kill millions will go to hell - I don't know that.

(Personally, I hope the Lord is merciful on the mass-murderer, for my sins might be as numerous, even if they are of a different nature.)
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« Reply #76 on: December 08, 2007, 05:00:35 PM »

Who cares?

I don't particularly; but quoted articles should be given proper citations, as it was posted one could have assumed that he wrote it, that is plagiarism and could potentially subject not only the poster but also the site to civil liabilities.
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« Reply #77 on: December 16, 2007, 08:02:12 PM »

Ebor,

Greetings once again!  Wow,  a lot has happened since my last posting!

I apologize for being away for a while.  I'm in the last week of a college class (yes, older folk can go back to college  Grin) and that and life with kids have taken up my time.

[qipte]
Sorry, I didn't mean to focus on this.  My Anglican friend oddly holds the Hooker 3-legged stool position, yet at the same time, he doesn't like when I deny sola scriptura.   So, that may explain part of my repetition on this topic.  I'll drop it.  I'll also drop discussion about what most Protestants believe.  I must disagree with Prodromas that I do not have an understanding of the "diversity of Protestantism."  On the contrary, having gone to many different types of Protestant services, I think I have a better understanding than many Protestants, frankly.  Its kind of like who knows more about America: one who has live there his whole life or a long-term immigrant? 
[/quote]

Thank you for the explaination; it helps in understanding.    However, to answer your last sentence, in a thing that has much variation (America or the Protestant Churches) a life-long or long time resident may well understand a particular area better then an immigrant, depending on how "long-term" is defined.  For example, I have been away from Montana for many years, but it is still 'home' and I understand the place, the situations and the people there.  When in other threads there has been discussion of EO in Montana and going to services, I know the distances and how getting around there is different from the coasts or in large metropolitan areas.

Quote
Nevertheless, I do think Prodromas has a point in that the topic of this thread is to understand more about what Anglicans believe, which is what I want to know.   You know, discussions sometimes go a bit astray.  Hope you
are not offended; that wasn't my intent.    I'll try to stick to the topic (but make no guarantees Smiley).

I'm not offended at all!  Threads wander about and sometimes a 'jog' in the trail can lead to other discussions.  Now if we were to suddenly start talking about say... polar bears, or deep sea diving that might be a wee bit off topic.  Cheesy

Quote
I know the Church of England uses the term "Vicar" to describe priests--or it is bishops?  But when I was attending the Episcopal Church (now an Anglican Church), I don't think they used that title.  As I'm sure you know, Orthodox are not thrilled with the term "Vicar of Christ" as Rome uses it.  How do Anglicans mean by the use the "V word"?

Also, how is Anglo-Catholic different from High Church Anglican?  (I have an idea, but I trust your opinion about this more than mine!)


The Young Fogey and OzGeorge and Veniamin covered this pretty well. 

By all means, though, if you would like to continue the discussion, let's do so.  Smiley

Ebor
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« Reply #78 on: December 17, 2007, 06:16:18 AM »

Greetings, Ebor.  A couple of more questions.
Thanks for your willingness to answer.

1) What does Anglican in America mean?  Until the recent split, I thought
all American Anglicans were Episcopalians. 

2) What is your take on that split?

3) Why did the head of the Anglican Church in England criticize America
recently?  In a related matter, who is the head of the Anglican Church?
The Archbishop of Canterbury?  I thought the queen (of England) was the head of the
church, but not for American Anglicans.   Is the queen the head of the church in
the British Empire (Canada, Australia, etc.)?

4) What is the difference between High-Church Anglicans and Low-Church Anglicans?
Don't Low-Church Anglicans use the Book of Common Prayer as well?


Thanks again.
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« Reply #79 on: December 18, 2007, 05:20:55 PM »

If it's OK, I'll answer a bit of this right now and then the rest later as I have a lot happening at the moment and a short time to be here.  I *will* address all of your questions given some breathing space, I promise, but some of them like number 2 need more time to write about clearly and number 1 is complicated, too.


4B) Don't Low-Church Anglicans use the Book of Common Prayer as well?


The Book of Common Prayer is part of the "bones" or skeleton/structure of the Anglican Communion.  All Anglican Churches have the BCP but with variations for their own national/cultural things.  I don't have copies of all of the ones in the world (recall there are Anglican's all around the world and most of them are neither English nor American) but I do have several like the New Zealand, the Scottish, the Church of England (including the historical ones) and the American one (ditto). 

The same basic liturgy, services of various sorts (Morning, Noon, Evening Prayer; Compline; Eucharists, Weddings, Funerals, Baptisms, Churching/Thanksgiving for a birth/adoption (a varying one), ordinations/consecrations and others along with prayers and psalms and more.  But there will be differences such as who is listed in the Kalendar: there are the saints that everyone venerates and then there are the more local ones for each Anglican Church.  The NZ BCP has some parts in Maori or other local southern Pacific languages (if you're interested I can go get it off the shelf) for example as well as rites/services that apply to that culture (I'd have to look it up but one that I recall relates to customs after a death.)  The standard American BCP is all in English but iirc it can be gotten in other languages.

So the BCP is used by all as the basic plan and it can be plain or more ceremonial according to the parish custom.  There are other books that we use too.  I'll explain about them if you like, but I have to hare off *immediately*.

Ebor
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« Reply #80 on: December 21, 2007, 01:11:48 PM »

1) What does Anglican in America mean?  Until the recent split, I thought all American Anglicans were Episcopalians.

The short form: The Episcopal Church is still the only church in the USA that is part of the Anglican communion. But there are a lot of splinters that call themselves Anglican and which can, in some sense, be so characterized.

The long version:

The first big Anglican split-off was the Methodists. The break-off of the Reformed Episcopal Church in the 1800s was more or less in reaction to the Oxford Movement gradually making liturgy more Catholic. Then things stabilized until the 1960s and especially the 1970s, when ordination of women and the new BCP brought about the departure of a bunch of different groups. None of these took any sitting bishops, and those that took retired bishops tended to take only one or two. So there is some cause for considering them defective in that sense. There are a lot of them.

Are they Anglican? Well, they claim to be continuing an Anglican tradition which they see the communion churches as having abandoned. Is their spitting off legitimately Anglican? That is highly arguable.
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« Reply #81 on: December 24, 2007, 10:50:30 AM »

The ironic thing is that if Thomas Cranmer were brought in to see the Episcopal Church leadership today, he might not even recognize it as Christian, let alone Anglican.
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« Reply #82 on: December 25, 2007, 02:22:24 PM »

I must admit, there is something attractive about Anglicanism.  There is a great appreciation for tradition, and the Church does not require people to accept those Catholic and Orthodox doctrines with which I personally struggle.  Of course, what matters is what is actually true, not what is most appealing.

And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green
And was the holy lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen

And did the countenance divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among those dark Satanic mills

Bring me my bow of burning gold
Bring me my arrows of desire
Bring me my spears o'clouds unfold
Bring me my chariot of fire

I will not cease from mental fight
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand
'Til we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land
'Til we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land
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« Reply #83 on: December 27, 2007, 11:37:59 PM »

I must admit, there is something attractive about Anglicanism.  There is a great appreciation for tradition, and the Church does not require people to accept those Catholic and Orthodox doctrines with which I personally struggle.  Of course, what matters is what is actually true, not what is most appealing.

Sometimes a thing can be appealing *and* true.  Smiley 

Quote
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green
And was the holy lamb of God
On England's pleasant pastures seen

And did the countenance divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among those dark Satanic mills

Bring me my bow of burning gold
Bring me my arrows of desire
Bring me my spears o'clouds unfold
Bring me my chariot of fire

I will not cease from mental fight
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand
'Til we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land
'Til we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land

A wonderful song that sounds very fine with a Boys Choir.  Smiley

Ebor
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« Reply #84 on: December 27, 2007, 11:59:41 PM »

Greetings, Ebor.  A couple of more questions.
Thanks for your willingness to answer.

To quote Dr. Hattori on Iron Chef "Always a pleasure"  Wink
I'll address 4A for now if that's OK.  I think it might be useful to break the questions down into portions.

Quote
4) What is the difference between High-Church Anglicans and Low-Church Anglicans?

One of the differences is with praxis.  The "Low Church" will be simpler, with less ritual.  The order of service from the BCP will be the same in structure, but there won't be incense or "Sacring Bells" rung at the consecration of the Bread and Wine and things like that.  The Psalm will be read rather then chanted or sung.  It will still be reverent, the priest and congregation are there to worship, but more plain.  Sometimes this could be due to the size of the parish or where it is.  I can tell you that out in Montana things will likely not be as fancy or "high" as in might be found in a parish in a big city.  Partly this may be due to the history of the parish (founded by a circuit riding bishop, some of them in former saloons or that sort of thing) or to way things have come about over time. 

But high, low or central they still have their roots in Anglicanism. On this I'm writing of what I know from my experiences.  How this is defined in other countries' Anglican Churches may differ.  As a side note, I can tell you that I have a book on the Anglican Church in Japan. Some parishes are in a "western" style while others are in traditional Japanese design with  tatami mats and a raised area.  How "high" and "low" apply there, I don't know, but it shows how Anglicans have adopted some local things as they spread around the globe.

Ebor
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« Reply #85 on: January 02, 2008, 08:52:21 AM »

There remains great beauty in Anglicanism. I attended choral evensong on Christmas Day at Salisbury Cathedral in England last week. They had feathered angels suspended in the air along the nave. I could have sworn they were singing too.

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« Reply #86 on: January 02, 2008, 02:46:23 PM »

^^Hmm...let's see:

You just come back from the UK....and then this happens just a few days later:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=505497&in_page_id=1770

Quote
Ambulance service receives emergency call every 8 seconds as Binge Britain welcomes in 2008

(Warning...there are some photos of young women that are covered, but the article may still be difficult to explain reading while at the workplace)

Coincidence....or conspiracy, lubeltri ?  Wink
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« Reply #87 on: January 02, 2008, 04:17:12 PM »

 Wink

Good thing I got out on Monday afternoon! I was back in Boston by 9pm (and promptly went to bed; ever endure a plane landing with a sinus infection?).

Such a surprise---I thought I had drunk the place dry in the week I spent there. Guess I was wrong.  Wink
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« Reply #88 on: January 03, 2008, 11:24:44 AM »

There remains great beauty in Anglicanism. I attended choral evensong on Christmas Day at Salisbury Cathedral in England last week. They had feathered angels suspended in the air along the nave. I could have sworn they were singing too.

How fortunate you were to be able to do that!  Someday I hope to visit England. I should dearly like to see Salisbury and Canterbury and York as well as other places and things.

Ebor
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« Reply #89 on: January 03, 2008, 11:37:36 AM »

1b) Until the recent split, I thought all American Anglicans were Episcopalians.

I'm not quite sure what you mean by "recent split".  For the moment, ECUSA is still part of the Anglican Communion, but there is a lot going on and I don't know what the end will be.  One of the events coming up that is very important is the bishops getting together for the Lambeth Conference which is to happen in July. Here's some info on that:
http://www.lambethconference.org/ 

Quote
2) What is your take on that split? 

Once I understand what your question referred to, I'll be more able to answer this one.

Quote
3a) Why did the head of the Anglican Church in England criticize America
recently? 

Which particular one have you read and do you mean the Episcopal Church or America the country? (I apologize for being a bit thick at the moment.  I just want to know more clearly what should be addressed) There has been a good bit of turmoil and goings-on between Canterbury (as well as many of the other members of the Communion) for some time.

Quote
In a related matter, who is the head of the Anglican Church?
The Archbishop of Canterbury?  I thought the queen (of England) was the head of the
church, but not for American Anglicans.   Is the queen the head of the church in
the British Empire (Canada, Australia, etc.)?

The Archbishop of Canterbury is the head of the Church of England and the "First among equals" of all of the Primates of the Anglican Communion. He is much like the situation of the EP re the EO Churches in that regard.  Recall that the Communion is made up of a number of national or regional Churches.   Her Majesty doesn't really have any power and not much influence on Church matters that I know of either in England or any of the members of the Commonwealth.  Canada, Australis etc all have their own Archbishops.

I'm sorry I couldn't give you more info in this one.  I want to be clear on what to write about.

Ebor
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« Reply #90 on: January 03, 2008, 12:11:50 PM »

How fortunate you were to be able to do that!  Someday I hope to visit England. I should dearly like to see Salisbury and Canterbury and York as well as other places and things.

Ebor

You should. Those are all interesting places with wonderful cathedrals. My personal favorite is the cathedral in Durham.

Of course, Kings College Chapel is special to me, too, having gone there when I was studying in Cambridge.
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« Reply #91 on: January 08, 2008, 07:17:24 AM »

I'm not quite sure what you mean by "recent split".  For the moment, ECUSA is still part of the Anglican Communion, but there is a lot going on and I don't know what the end will be.  One of the events coming up that is very important is the bishops getting together for the Lambeth Conference which is to happen in July. Here's some info on that:
http://www.lambethconference.org/ 

Once I understand what your question referred to, I'll be more able to answer this one.

Hi again, Ebor.  The recent split to which I am referring is these 9 Virginia churches (including Falls Church) which recently left TEC.   They joined, at least temporarily, the Anglican Church of Uganda.

Quote
Which particular one have you read and do you mean the Episcopal Church or America the country? (I apologize for being a bit thick at the moment.  I just want to know more clearly what should be addressed) There has been a good bit of turmoil and goings-on between Canterbury (as well as many of the other members of the Communion) for some time.

I wasn't clear.  I should have said the archbishop's criticism of the American government.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php?topic=13538.0

Quote
The Archbishop of Canterbury is the head of the Church of England and the "First among equals" of all of the Primates of the Anglican Communion. He is much like the situation of the EP re the EO Churches in that regard.  Recall that the Communion is made up of a number of national or regional Churches.   


How many Primates are there?   

Thanks.
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« Reply #92 on: January 15, 2008, 03:32:14 PM »

Hi again, Ebor.  The recent split to which I am referring is these 9 Virginia churches (including Falls Church) which recently left TEC.   They joined, at least temporarily, the Anglican Church of Uganda.

Ah, thank you for the clarification.  Well, right now things are still in turmoil there and in other places.  I haven't had a chance to read much about it this week, but there's some legal action going on with complications.  It would have been preferable if the parishes did not think that the split was necessary.  It would have been preferable if other ways could have been found.  This is a very complicated thing with it happening in many places including an entire diocese breaking away from ECUSA, which has led to the Presiding Bishop issuing something like an inhibition against that bishop.  I need to get more data.

Quote
I wasn't clear.  I should have said the archbishop's criticism of the American government.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php?topic=13538.0

I'm afraid I can't read that thread.  Is it in the "Politics" forum?  I've never joined there, but I should ask a mod to permit me just so I can read things.  I'll try to find out more, but I see no reason why the Archbishop should not criticize the US Government if he thinks that there's something wrong.  He, as a religious leader, could very well have something to say.  I will say that I think +Rowan to be a very thoughtful man.

Quote
How many Primates are there?   

38.  Here is a list with links to biographies
http://www.anglicancommunion.org/communion/primates/biog/index.cfm

Ebor
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« Reply #93 on: January 15, 2008, 04:42:00 PM »

Henry VIII was not a "Protestant"---in fact, he burnt subjects espousing typical Protestant theological beliefs. His issue was supremacy, not theology. (Elizabeth was also very conservative, BTW---high-church, pro-vestments, traditional theology, prejudiced against married clergy.)

Nevertheless, the dissolution of the monasteries took place in several waves during Henry's reign, some of it quite violently.  Hardly a Catholic or Orthodox thing to do.
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« Reply #94 on: January 25, 2008, 01:12:01 PM »


So, back to the original question.

"Do Anglicans believe in Real Presence or not?  Or do they not know?"

The conclusion I reach from the above is that the Anglican answer is
they do not know.  Edited to add: More specifically, the Anglican
Church does not know.  Individual Anglicans may choose to
believe RP or not.

Like Ebor writes, Anglicans accept the Communion by faith
and don't question further, or as Keble seems to say, it's not our issue.
So, they, as a church, don't really know.  Am I right?

Sorry for my tone.


I think you realistically have it about right.  When I was an Anglican, and Catechist, (oh, and webmaster), I used to have a section on the website called "Ask the Catechist" where people could submit questions to be answered by the Catechetical team (including our rector).  One time, somebody asked what the Episcopal Church believed about Mary and the Saints.  My response began, roughly, that it was difficult to know what the Episcopal/Anglican view was on very much at all.  This is simply because of the extremely wide range of acceptable belief.  Of course, in the ECUSA (the "official" Anglican Church of the U.S. - and please no sniping about CANA or AMIA or ACN, or any of the others - I mean official in the very narrow sense of being recognized by Rowan Williams et al.) you can be the Presiding Bishop and apparently not believe in a lot of basic Christian doctrines.  To make a boring story short, my response ultimately was based on the prayer book and the hymns.  To a certain degree, that will, similar to Orthodoxy, give you a decent sense of what acceptable beliefs would be.

The one thing not mentioned here, though, is the 39 articles.  While now merely an historical relic in the ECUSA, belief in these used to be required by at least the clergy, if not the laity.  Of note would be Article 28:

 
Quote
The Supper of the Lord is not only a sign of the love that Christians ought to have among themselves one to another, but rather it is a Sacrament of our Redemption by Christ's death: insomuch that to such as rightly, worthily, and with faith, receive the same, the Bread which we break is a partaking of the Body of Christ; and likewise the Cup of Blessing is a partaking of the Blood of Christ.

Transubstantiation (or the change of the substance of Bread and Wine) in the Supper of the Lord, cannot be proved by Holy Writ; but is repugnant to the plain words of Scripture, overthroweth the nature of a Sacrament, and hath given occasion to many superstitions.

The Body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten, in the Supper, only after an heavenly and spiritual manner. And the mean whereby the Body of Christ is received and eaten in the Supper, is Faith.

The Sacrament of the Lord's Supper was not by Christ's ordinance reserved, carried about, lifted up, or worshipped.

In general, these articles reflect a much more reformed era in the Church.  John Henry Newman, shortly before becoming Catholic wrote an extensive tract attempting to square the very "Romish" (and this coming from a former AngloCatholic) opinions of the Oxford movement with the 39 articles.  Basically, what Newman came down to doing is pointing out the inconsistencies between the words of the 39 articles and what was allowed to be preached, and justifying the movement's opinions.  Here, then, lies the other problem.  Belief is not at all static, but seems to change with time.  In the early 19th Century (1840's or so), there was a series published known as the Library of AngloCatholic theology.  It contained, among other things, "Hammond's Practical Catechism", a 17th century text asserting that it was entirely inappropriate to take the Lord's words to mean that his body and blood were really present in the Sacrament.  By the 1890's, the Church Club (another AngloCatholic body) published some lectures where they said clearly you have no choice, based on Scripture alone, to believe in the real presence.

I have to admit that reading Hammond's Practical Catechism helped push me out of the Episcopal Church.  I was attempting to moderate my beliefs by adhering to the Anglican Divines and the like - looking toward early Anglicanism. I just couldn't do it.

Finally, one other note.  As Ebor has mentioned, there were a lot of politics around the break between England and Rome.  Among those political issues were things having nothing to do with Henry or the Tudor's.  Historically, Parliament (with their limited powers back then) had attempted to limit Rome's influence in English government - especially with regard to Peter's pence.  With little effect, but nonetheless, the desire was there on the part of people outside of the Royal family to limit or eliminate Rome's presence.
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« Reply #95 on: January 25, 2008, 08:10:09 PM »

Thanks for your response, Anceint Faith.  It is very revealing and thorough.


  It contained, among other things, "Hammond's Practical Catechism", a 17th century text asserting that it was entirely inappropriate to take the Lord's words to mean that his body and blood were really present in the Sacrament.  By the 1890's, the Church Club (another AngloCatholic body) published some lectures where they said clearly you have no choice, based on Scripture alone, to believe in the real presence.

I have to admit that reading Hammond's Practical Catechism helped push me out of the Episcopal Church.  I was attempting to moderate my beliefs by adhering to the Anglican Divines and the like - looking toward early Anglicanism. I just couldn't do it.


Followup question.  Who was Hammond?  Was his catechism widely used in the church?  And, I can't resist, what makes it "Practical," like T.S. Eliot?  Thanks.  Ebor, feel free to give your perspective on all this.
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« Reply #96 on: January 25, 2008, 09:10:33 PM »

Thanks for your response, Anceint Faith.  It is very revealing and thorough.


Followup question.  Who was Hammond?  Was his catechism widely used in the church?  And, I can't resist, what makes it "Practical," like T.S. Eliot?  Thanks.  Ebor, feel free to give your perspective on all this.


Here's his biography.  I confess to not knowing how wide his Catechism was used, but it was focused on the practice of one's faith, hence it was more practical.  I was recommended his Catechism by a fellow AngloCatholic as being very good.  When I read it (or more correctly, the sections that I read), I couldn't believe that this was supposed to be good AngloCatholicism.  It wasn't much like the AngloCatholicism that I knew, but maybe we were closer to AngloPapalists, as one priest I knew referred to himself.
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