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Into the Breach
Stand Firm ^ | 3/16/2006 | Matt Kennedy

Posted on 03/16/2006 1:15:25 PM PST by sionnsar

The diocesan deputies to General Convention will be in town this evening for a “listening session.” The purpose of this meeting is to let the deputies hear from the “people in the pews.”

As many of you know I am persuaded that we moved past the “listening” point in Minneapolis 2003.

However, a vestry member I greatly respect feels it our duty to bear witness one last time. And others agreed. They seem to feel somewhat like Jeremiah must have, called and compelled to speak the truth to people who will not listen.

And so we’re going. We’ve drafted a statement (below) and have prepared our people. The meeting is (naturally) going to be held in the most radical parish in the diocese.

Spiritual warfare happens. Please pray for us. I'll let you know what happens:

Brothers and sisters, deputies to the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church and fellow Episcopalians,

Hopefully, our time together this evening will be fruitful and while we will most likely part ways with deep differences on essential matters of faith, we hope and pray to part as friends and with charity and good will.

This brief statement represents the unanimous sentiment of the clergy and vestry of the Church of the Good Shepherd.

The essential issue at stake in our current crisis is whether God’s Word holds supreme authority in all matters of faith and practice. When Richard Hooker wrote, “what Scripture doth plainly deliver, to that first credit and obedience is due; the next whereunto is whatsoever any man can necessarily conclude by force of reason; after these the voice of the Church succeedeth,” (Laws, Book V, 8:2; Folger Edition 2:39,8-14), he was simply articulating what the Church has always believed; that, “all scripture, is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness” (2nd Timothy 3:16), and must therefore hold primary authority in the Church.

The bible consistently and uniformly describes all sexual behavior outside the bounds of heterosexual marriage as sinful. Homosexual behavior in particular is specifically defined as sin in both the Old and the New Testaments (Leviticus 18:22, 20:13; Romans 1:18-32; 1st Corinthians 6:9)

In keeping with this biblical truth, the Church: Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant, has consistently taught the same for 2000 years.

Today the Anglican Communion agrees and officially teaches that all sexual behavior outside heterosexual marriage, is inherently sinful.

All four Anglican Instruments of Unity have spoken on this question. Lambeth did so in 1998 with the passage of Lambeth resolution 1.10. The primates, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and the Anglican Consultative Council did so most recently in their reception and approval of the Windsor Report and Dromantine Communiqué.

Most recently the Archbishop of Canterbury in a letter to the primates dated March 8th of this year again reaffirmed communion teaching and indicated that resolution 1.10 represents the common mind of the Communion and would not be legislatively revisited at the next Lambeth conference in 2008. This means that for the foreseeable future, at least until 2018, the Scriptures, Church tradition and the teaching of the Anglican Communion speak with one voice with regard to human sexuality.

As your brothers and sisters in Christ, fully aware of our own sinfulness, we plead with you to do your part to return the Episcopal Church to the solid rock of biblical faithfulness and to be reunited in mind and spirit with our Christian brothers and sisters across the globe who with one voice declare God’s Word to be true and good despite humanity’s inability to follow it.

First, we urge you to vote for full compliance with the Windsor Report and the primates recommendations in the Dromantine Communique. This will allow the Episcopal Church and the diocese of Central New York to retain full membership in the Anglican Communion. Anything less than full compliance will jeopardize our status not only within the Communion, but also within Christendom itself.

Second, we urge all the clergy in Central New York who participated in the departure from scriptural truth to repent and recant.

We urge this for the sake of those struggling with sexual temptation; those who need the Church to tell the truth about the damaging effects of sexual sin on soul and body so that they might turn from it and receive Christ’s healing, comfort, and forgiveness.

We urge this for the sake of Christian unity, in keeping with the prayer of Christ on the night before he died, that we all may be one (John 17:23). Our visible and spiritual division has been as painful for us as it has been for the entire church.

But most of all we urge this for the sake of fidelity to Christ. “If you love me,” he said, “you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15)

Brothers and sisters we pray that you will lead us in loving the Lord by obeying his Word and teaching it in full.

But please know this: regardless of your decisions at General Convention, we the clergy, vestry, and people of the Church of the Good Shepherd are prepared to stand firm. We will not cooperate with or participate in any body claiming to be the Church that leads people deeper into darkness and further from the light of Christ.

TOPICS: Mainline Protestant

1 posted on 03/16/2006 1:15:32 PM PST by sionnsar
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To: ahadams2; axegrinder; AnalogReigns; Uriah_lost; Condor 63; Fractal Trader; Zero Sum; ...
Traditional Anglican ping, continued in memory of its founder Arlin Adams.

FReepmail sionnsar if you want on or off this moderately high-volume ping list (typically 3-9 pings/day).
This list is pinged by sionnsar, Huber and newheart.

Resource for Traditional Anglicans:
More articles here.

Humor: The Anglican Blue (by Huber)

Speak the truth in love. Eph 4:15

2 posted on 03/16/2006 1:16:21 PM PST by sionnsar (†† | Libs: Celebrate MY diversity! | Iran Azadi 2006)
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