Skip to comments.Anglican Angst
Posted on 01/15/2005 8:35:43 AM PST by sionnsar
Anglicanism sometimes seems like a country with a proportional representation system of government that is doomed, Groundhog Day-style, to be forever in an election year. For the last 150 years or more, Anglicans have subdivided into three basic groups. Labels have varied based on time period and nuance, but, for convenience, let's use Anglo-Catholic, Evangelical, and Modernist. As any student of politics knows, three parties means coalitions. As there is no election day, however, Anglican party strength is perpetually being testedevery decision and every appointment can be read as a triumph for one faction or another.
Related to this is another curiosity: most everyone, whether insider or outsider, will tell you that Anglicanism's notable strengths include tradition and continuity (not to mention unity). Nevertheless, the great rock of traditionalism seems more than most denominations to be forever anxious about what it must do to be relevant in the contemporary world.
There is no more delightful way into this terrain than John Richard Orens' urbane study of that quixotic Anglican priest of the Victorian age, Stewart Headlam. ...
[This is an excerpt. Click through for the entire essay. --sionnsar]
St Paul's has also witnessed its share of efforts to be relevant, some of them so pathetic that they could make even an American cringe
most amusing, and it brought to mind some of the liturgical silliness I witnessed in Roman Catholicism in the 1970s. At a mass in high school, they once used a bass drum to accompany the Nicene Creed. It was like we were marching to Moscow while trying to avoid freezing to death.
This was edifying for a practicing Roman Catholic:
Moreover, if Modernism is truly the enemy, and if Evangelicals really have no critique of Anglo-Catholicism left, then why should people not just convert to Rome, a church that isn't afraid to be countercultural?
I found this extremely interesting, informed, well written and relevant to this situation today. Consider that the modernist Anlgo-Catholics are now the Affirming Catholics and they include Frank Griswold and Rowan Williams.
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