An Anglican Priest

"Protestant and Reformed according to the principles of the ancient Catholic Church." Bishop John Cosin (d. 1672)

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Ah. . .tolerant liberalism. . .

(from the Corner of the National Review)
Misguided youth with a liberal fascist instinct:

"In response to a series of controversies over abortion debates on Canadian campuses, the student government of York University in Toronto has tabled an outright ban on student clubs that are opposed to abortion.

Gilary Massa, vice-president external of the York Federation of Students, said student clubs will be free to discuss abortion in student space, as long as they do it "within a pro-choice realm," and that all clubs will be investigated to ensure compliance.

"You have to recognize that a woman has a choice over her own body," Ms. Massa said. "We think that these pro-life, these anti-choice groups, they're sexist in nature ... The way that they speak about women who decide to have abortions is demoralizing. They call them murderers, all of them do ... Is this an issue of free speech? No, this is an issue of women's rights."

Another sign that open-minded classical liberalism is by and large a thing of the past. I think I hear the Emperor's March from the Empire Strikes Back playing quietly in the background.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Baptism

There are two Sacraments ordained of Christ our Lord in the Gospel, that is to say, Baptism, and the Supper of the Lord.

It is through baptism by water in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost that an individual dies to sin and rises to new life in Christ. Through this rebirth, or regeneration, baptism washes away original sin and opens the door to God’s grace. At baptism, a person is grafted into the Church, the Body of Christ, and becomes a branch of the Vine. Furthermore, in Baptism a visible confirmation is given of God’s forgiveness of the individual’s sins, and one’s adoption as a son of God and an heir of salvation.

Baptism is not only a sign of profession, and mark of difference, whereby Christian men are discerned from others that be not christened, but it is also a sign of Regeneration or New-Birth, whereby, as by an instrument, they that receive Baptism rightly are grafted into the Church; the promises of the forgiveness of sin, and of our adoption to be the sons of God by the Holy Ghost, are visibly signed and sealed, Faith is confirmed, and Grace increased by virtue of prayer unto God. The Baptism of young Children is in any wise to be retained in the Church, as most agreeable with the institution of Christ.

Not every deadly sin willingly committed after Baptism is sin against the Holy Ghost, and unpardonable. Wherefore the grant of repentance is not to be denied to such as fall into sin after Baptism. After we have received the Holy Ghost, we may depart from grace given, and fall into sin, and by the grace of God we may arise again, and amend our lives. And therefore they are to be condemned, which say, they can no more sin as long as they live here, or deny the place of forgiveness to such as truly repent.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

A new book linked to at Cranmer and Laud!

http://cranmerandlaud.blogspot.com/2008/05/hardwicks-history-of-articles.html

Hardwick's A History of the Articles of Religion

A must read for all classical Anglicans, demonstrating the soundness of our doctrine.

What's in a name?

(Summer is a time for re-runs, so here's an oldy with some new comments)

This may be completely inconsequential, but as a traditionalist Anglican priest I always take notice of what conservative Anglicans/Episcopalians call themselves. Our parish is within the Reformed Episcopal Church, but we do not label ourselves primarily as "Reformed Episcopalians," because we've taken note that very few people know what this means--are they Calvinist Episcopalians? Not really, since the Prayer Book and the Articles are not Calvinist, but biblical, patristic, Augustinian, and protestant, but by no means Calvinist (indeed, many of the Calvinists of generations past claimed the Anglican Articles did not go far enough and wished to throw them overboard and replace them with something "more Calvinist"!). Indeed, there is no reason to expect anything "Calvinist" in them, for they predates such disputes--see Browne's excellent Exposition on the Articles as well as Hardwick's History of the Articles (see the link over at Cranmer and Laud). It is ironic that in the past history of the Reformed Episcopal Church in the United States the Articles were "rewritten" a strongly Arminian manner--gutting the doctrine of predestination--while the Free Church of England essentially left them alone). This doctrine of Predestination is not "Calvinist," but biblical and Pauline, as many Anglican authors have noted.

Also, we are in full-communion with the Anglican Province of America and the Anglican Church of Nigeria, and in federation with the Anglican Church in America and the Anglican Mission in America. Our primary bond of unity is found in our common history as Anglicans; the designation of "Reformed Episcopal" is a jurisdictional title. Therefore, the moniker of our parish is "St. Andrew's Anglican Church, a Reformed Episcopal parish." Most classical Anglican parishes do something similar, using the word Anglican as the primary designation with a later description that informs the reader of the jurisdictional link. The word "Anglican" in use in the United States has become a bit of a code word for "conservative" or "traditional" Episcopalian, something that seems to make the mainline body quite angry--they're not real Anglicans, they often say, but counterfeits! I've noticed that several parishes in the Anglican Province of Christ the King do something similar to what I mentioned above in regards to my own parish--"All Saints Anglican Church, a traditional Episcopal parish of the Province of Christ the King."

The Episcopal heritage of the Church in the United States is something that traditionalists sometimes use to demonstrate that we really are Episcopalians, just as much as the "official" and now heterodox body. We have bishops, and we have the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. I've seen the title "Anglican Episcopal" used as well to describe parishes in several jurisdictions. Although we lack communion with the See of Canterbury, we lay claim to the heritage and doctrine of the Reformed Catholic Faith as expressed in the Anglican Way via the classical Prayer Books (1549-1928), the Ordinal, and the Articles of Religion. I've noticed that some parishes in the United Episcopal Church and the Reformed Episcopal Church are even bold enough to simply call themselves "Episcopalian" without an "Anglican" qualifier: "St Paul's Episcopal Church, a parish of the. . ." How this must upset the mainliners. Ah, but what is in a name? I prefer the term Anglican myself. If someone doesn't know what I mean when I say "Anglican" I may fall back on something like "traditional Episcopalian." Yes, we have bishops, but is that enough? The mainline church put all of their stock in the office of bishop, but those bishops turned out to be wolves, not shepherds of the flock. They cast aside the Prayer Book and the Articles, cast aside Catholic order of bishop, presbyter, and deacon, and cast aside the heritage of the Anglican Church. Notice how all of the classic texts of Anglicanism once published by the mainline church are now being replaced by books that fit the "new religion" of "affirming catholicism." In the end, all they had was the title "Episcopalian," but that is not enough to be Anglican--it may be necessary, but it is not sufficient. As we continue as "Continuing" or classical Anglicans, let us be mindful that what makes us Anglicans is not just episcopal polity, but the faith of the primitive Catholic Church as expressed in our liturgies and the Creeds.

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