6/30/2008

Anglican Communion is in Schism

I see that the Anglican Communion is teetering on the edge of schism following a showdown with Rowan Williams yesterday and the formation of Foca.


The Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans (Foca) will sever ties with the main Anglican churches in the US and Canada, whose leaders they accuse of betraying biblical teaching.

This row has been brewing ever since the ordination and consecration of gay New Hampshire bishop Gene Robinson.

The traditionalists in the Anglican Communion accuse their Western counterparts of abandoning biblical teaching in pursuit of so-called modernity and pluralism.

In a statement, they said: "While acknowledging the nature of Canterbury as an historic see, we do not accept that Anglican identity is determined necessarily through recognition by the Archbishop of Canterbury."

There also plan to boycott this summer's Lambeth conference, the once-a-decade gathering of the Anglican world's 880 bishops, in a snub to Archbishop William’s leadership.

I'm not an Anglican, I'm a Catholic but I do look on with great interest. The position of the Anglican Communion inside Protestantism has always been somewhat of a mystery to me.

With the High Church and Low Church under the one banner I have often wondered what the Anglican Church actually stood for. I have often heard them described as yellow back Catholics who wish to have their cake and eat it.

Many of my English friends were Anglicans, or at least were brought up in that faith and they could never really explain where their "Church" stood with regards several issues because another would always contradict the first.

When I first moved to London one of the first things I did was to search out my nearest Catholic Church. I remember looking upon this old gothic church with ornate stain glassed windows. I'm in luck says I, this has to be a Catholic Church. I looked at the name and found out it was the Church of Mary Magdalene. I checked out the sign at the front and saw that confessions were on a Thursday.

I was quite surprised to find out that it was in fact an Anglican church, a Catholic church stolen during the reformation no doubt and that the Catholic Church was less than 20 meters over the road, St Anne's.

As I became a regular at St Anne's I was introduced to the Vicar or whatever it is they call themselves and I asked him how High Church Anglicans were able to square their faith with their lower Church brethren, he couldn't answer it.

I'm not surprised that this schism is occurring inside Anglicanism; when you try to be all things to all men you always fail in the end.

To those traditionalists who feel betrayed by Williams and Co I wonder will they consider returning to the "One true Catholic and Apostolic Church"?

No comments: