Saturday, November 22, 2008

Good Stuff in TEC: Virginia

Danville church group hopes bags fill food bank

A Danville church has come up with an innovative way to help God’s Storehouse.

The Outreach Committee of the Episcopal Church of the Epiphany designed environmentally friendly grocery bags complete with a laminated list of the top items the local food bank needs.

“Five or six of us brainstormed and came up with this idea,” committee member Janie Lee Carter said.

The committee members designed the bags and took their work to Captain Copy for printing. On Sunday, church members received their bags and were asked to take them when they go shopping.

Carter said the laminated list is important because it reminds parishioners to help God’s
Storehouse, and with items it genuinely needs. These items include canned food, pasta, peanut butter and other necessities.

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Two churches destroyed in Nigeria

A Christian advocacy group is reporting that tension is rising in the northern Nigerian town of Yelwa, Bauchi State after two churches were attacked and destroyed within a three-day period. Reports indicate that local Muslims dismantled the foundation stones of a new church belonging to the Church of Christ in Nigeria (COCIN) in Sabon Kaura on Sunday, November 16.

Bauchi's Military Commandant, Commissioner of Police and Deputy Governor visited the area on Monday, November 17 to investigate further and a guard was placed around the facility.

However, despite the presence of these troops, an Anglican church two kilometres away was then burnt down on Tuesday evening, November 18.
Although there are currently less direct attacks on church buildings than in the past, churches in northern Nigeria and in central states continue to face regular harassment. They often have difficulties obtaining land or getting permission for construction. Churches there are commonly dismantled without adequate compensation, on the orders of local authorities.

Financial Strain Evident at New York Diocesan Convention

The Living Church reports on the Diocese of New York Convention-

None of the approved resolutions produced extended debate, but approval of the $13.3 million budget as presented was approved only after the Rt. Rev. Mark Sisk, Bishop of New York, spoke in favor of it. The budget, which represented an increase of more than $880,000 over the previous year, was prepared last summer, before the severe financial downturn affected Wall Street.

Some convention delegates were prepared to go through the budget line-by-line on the convention floor, but Bishop Sisk urged against a floor fight. Instead, he promised that the trustees would carefully monitor expenses in light of the new financial situation facing most parishes. Bishop Sisk also promised that the diocese would not take excessively punitive measures against congregations which are unable to meet their assessment due to financial hardship.

In 2006 the 75th General Convention directed that the Revised Common Lectionary (RCL) become the official lectionary of the church effective on the First Sunday of Advent, 2007. General Convention also made a provision that year for continued use of the prayer book lectionary “for purposes of orderly transition, with the permission of the ecclesiastical authority until the first Sunday of Advent, 2010.”

However, the explanation approved by convention notes that “there is not a broadly-based consensus in the Diocese of New York that favors the Revised Common Lectionary over the lectionary found in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. Rather, since the adoption of the Revised Common Lectionary in 2007, it has become clear that well-reasoned preferences for both lectionaries are found among the church and clergy of the diocese.”

The split in the Anglican Communion widens a tad

USA Today reports on the schism in the Episcopal Church in North America. They also report that its unlikely that Canterbury will recognise it.

Barry Kosmin, one of the nation's top researchers on the demographics of faith, argues in a book he co-authored, Religion in a Free Market, that competition among religious groups keeps interest in God high in the USA, even as denominational identity is fading.

Now, you can see that "market" in action: The final formal break-off of a small but significant group of U.S. and Canadian parishes and dioceses from their national denominations and, quite possibly, from the Anglican Communion, the world's third largest Christian denomination, as well.

The Episcopal Church, the U.S. branch of the worldwide Anglican Communion, has been riven by dissent for years over how to read the Bible and whether homosexuals can serve as bishops.

Good Stuff in TEC: Ohio

Kelly Marshall served on the staff of Calvary in Shadyside years ago.

Thank God for blessings by taking action

Long before any legislation, the Bible has been a source of many passages about being thankful and giving thanks.

“It’s a time to focus on what concrete thing, what action have I taken to express my gratefulness to God, family and neighbors for the good in my life,” said the Rev. Kelly Marshall, rector of St. James’ Episcopal Church, 7640 Glenwood Ave. “At the least, will I take a concrete action to say thank you and at the most, will I share a good thing.”

The pastor said this is the season to “reflect on our blessings in life.” And, he said, saying thanks to God could take the form of “donating time, energy and resources” to those who aren’t so fortunate. “The faith community helps people reflect on what is truly important in life.”

On Thanksgiving Day, Father Marshall said, it’s expected to express thanks. “But shouldn’t we make a lifelong and daily practice to give thanks,” he pondered.

“Living in a thankful way probably will make us appreciate the good that has come to us. Having a sense of reflecting on the good things in our lives is part of the Christian and Jewish heritage,” Father Marshall said. “If we never take the time to reflect, we tend not to reach out.” He said reflection may help people see the bounty that they have and “become more concerned about the needs of others and less selfish.”

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

At a New York Seminary, a Green Idea Gets Tangled in Red Tape

New York Times reports on the bureaucratic nightmare of trying to be energy efficient in Manhattan.

Here was the easy part about an elegant, smart alternative energy project at an Episcopal seminary in Chelsea: drilling 1,500 feet through Manhattan schist to reach the water that runs deep and warm in the earth.

“An 8 3/4-inch carbide button drill bit,” said Dennis Frawley, who managed the project for the General Theological Seminary. “Behind that, there was a fluted percussion hammer. That pounds the rock into particulate.”

Drilling a quarter-mile into solid rock was simple, said Maureen Burnley, the seminary’s executive vice president, compared with persuading government officials and agencies that had the authority to say no — or to simply do nothing and stop all progress.

“We had to answer to 10 agencies,” Ms. Burnley said. “It took three times as long as it should have. The left and the right hand did not know what the other was doing.”

Ms. Burnley and Mr. Frawley were members of a small team that has installed seven geothermal wells at the seminary, which occupies most of a full city block between Ninth and 10th Avenues and 20th and 21st Streets. They intend to drill 15 more. The wells are a source of energy because the water is 65 degrees year-round, so it is being used to cool seminary buildings in the summer and heat them in the winter. Once all 22 wells are running, the seminary will shut down its boilers. By replacing fuel oil with geothermal energy, the seminary will reduce its annual carbon dioxide emissions by 1,400 tons.

EAU CLAIRE: Options considered as diocese faces uncertain future

A report from Episcopal News Service about the Diocese of Eau Claire which is actually smaller than the reorganized Diocese of Pittsburgh.

The Episcopal Diocese of Eau Claire, without a sitting bishop since April and unable to afford the expenses of full-time episcopal oversight, has launched a process aimed at charting a course for the future.

A resolution passed at the recent 80th annual convention of the diocese, held November 7-8 at Christ Church, La Crosse, commits the diocese to consider five options for Episcopal oversight ranging from the election of a part-time, bi-vocational bishop to merging with another diocese, to dissolving the Diocese of Eau Claire.

The Right Rev. Keith B. Whitmore, elected Bishop of Eau Claire in 1998, announced his resignation in March 2008 in order to become assisting bishop in the Diocese of Atlanta.

The Diocese of Eau Claire, originally carved out of the dioceses of Fond du Lac and Milwaukee in 1927, has historically been a small diocese. Today it is home to 22 congregations with combined average Sunday attendance in 2007 of 952 persons, 45 percent of whom worship in three congregations. Seven churches have Sunday attendance below 20 persons; eight between 20 and 50; and four between 50 and 60. Average Sunday attendance dropped by five percent from 2006 to 2007.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Communion Partner Rectors: No Interest in New Province

The communion partners are a group of conservative clergy dedicated to orthodoxy and resisting the innovations that are occurring in some parts of the Episcopal Church. From the Living Church-

While understanding that for some conservative constituents another path may soon be chosen, the advisory board of the Communion Partner rectors said recently that a new Anglican province in North America “is not something we desire or a structure in which we wish to participate.”

The Communion Partner rectors met Nov. 6-7 at St. Martin’s Church, Houston. The initial list of rectors has grown from 17 parishes representing 25,000 communicants to 45 parishes representing 42,000 communicants, according to a news release prepared by the group.

The group said that although they appreciate the “serious challenges of this present season in our greater Communion and The Episcopal Church,” they were “firmly committed to remain in The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion, respecting and honoring the proper authority of our bishops and working in concert with them to strengthen our voice with the church.

“We wish to support and encourage the Windsor process, the development of an Anglican Covenant and the Instruments of Communion. We believe this is the path Christ is calling us to follow together with faithful leadership throughout the world-wide Anglican Communion.”

A New “Province” in North America: Neither the Only Nor the Right Answer for the Communion

Ephraim Radner gives a helpful analysis of the proposed new province in North America.

A new “province” for North American Anglicans is now promised to be “up and running” in the next month or so. It will comprise the 3-4 dioceses that have voted to leave TEC; the associations of various congregations that have left TEC (e.g. CANA) and those started outside of TEC from departing groups; it will also include congregations and denominations within the Anglican tradition that have formed over the past decades in North America. All of these groups now form part of an association called Common Cause.

The formation of this new “province” appears to be a fait accompli. It will presumably provide formal stability for the congregations and their plants who have left TEC and the Anglican Church of Canada, as well as some kind of more easily grasped relationship with some other parts of the Anglican Communion. It is important to note, however, that such a new grouping will also not solve the problems of traditional Anglicans in North America , and that it will pose new problems to the Communion as a whole. As a member of the Covenant Design Group, committed to a particular work of providing a new framework for faithful communion life in Christ among Anglicans, I want to be clear about how the pressing forward of this new grouping within its stated terms poses some serious problems:

Faith leaders reflect at Auschwitz

The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Chief Rabbi, Dr Jonathan Sacks, joined other faith leaders from Britain in a one-day visit to the former Nazi concentration camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland last week. The visit was arranged to demonstrate their solidarity against the extremes of hostility represented by the camp.

It was organised in conjunction with the Lessons from Auschwitz Project and the Holocaust Educational Trust, which sent 200 students on the trip.

Dr Williams delivered his personal reflections during the visit, which culminated in the reading of Psalm 23. “Many times today, we’ve been reminded that what happened here at Auschwitz-Birkenau didn’t happen just because of a small number of monstrously evil people. It happened also because people cooked meals, drove trains, designed and built the buildings we’ve been in — people doing ordinary jobs, people who failed to see the big picture.

NEAC5 closes in acrimony after claims of ‘set-up’

This is from the Church Times. Its worth reading the entire article as it showcases the tactics being employed to create this new province and shows how deeply divided conservatives are on the issue. Gafcon is described as being a bully.

A MEETING billed as the National Evangelical Anglican Consultation (NEAC5) ended in acrimony on Saturday, amid accusations of a hijack by hard-line conservatives and of bullying and manipulation by the chairman of the Church of England Evangelical Council (CEEC), the Revd Dr Richard Turnbull, Principal of Wycliffe Hall (Comment, 14 November).

Delegates rebelled when they found on their chairs at the start of the afternoon session a resolution from the CEEC executive calling for NEAC to support the Global Angli can Future Conference (GAFCON) Jerusalem Declaration. There had been no mention of it in the morning session, and it was not on the agenda. An accompanying note said that no amendments would be allowed.

Rodney Curtis, a management consultant who worships at St Ebbe’s, Oxford, likened attending the meeting to “watching a car crash in slow motion”, as Dr Turnbull ignored advice from Dr Philip Giddings, the convener of Anglican Mainstream, and Canon Michael Saward to withdraw the resolution. “The management of the day was so amateur that I felt embarrassed,” he said. “We were being bounced into supporting GAFCON at the say-so of Richard Turnbull.”

He described Dr Turnbull as having been “publicly humiliated”, and GAFCON as having been made to look like “a bullying, manipulative movement”. A procedural motion brought by Philip Love grove, a veteran of the General Synod, called for a move to next business. That motion was carried by 123 votes to 104.

Episcopal Church dissidents aim for new church

The Washington Post's report on the proposed new "province". They confirm that two thirds of the Primates need to check off on it and Martin Minns says they will have a "majority".

In recent months four dioceses out of 110 have split from the church in California, Pennsylvania, Texas and Illinois. The church says that fewer than 100 out of 7,100 congregations had either left or voted to leave before that.


Robert Lundy, spokesman for the conservative American Anglican Council, estimates that the recent splits have pushed the number higher.

The next step, he said, is for those and like-minded others to create a church that can be recognized as a province. Provinces, such as the Episcopal Church, are divisions of the Anglican Communion, each headed by a presiding bishop called a primate.

The global church is a federation of such provinces with no strong hierarchical authority as exists in the Roman Catholic Church.

Minns, a former Episcopalian elevated to bishop by the Church of Nigeria and leader of the Convocation of Anglicans in North America, said the new province could count on 100,000 people as its average weekly attendance. The Episcopal Church says its average weekly attendance is about 727,000.

Becoming a province would require approval from two-thirds of the primates and recognition from the Anglican Consultative Council, another church body.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Good Stuff in TEC: Illinois

Different faiths celebrate together

Pilgrims, Indians and ecumenism will be interwoven when Rabbi Charles Rubovits of the Joliet Jewish Congregation delivers the keynote speech message at the area's third Community Thanksgiving Worship Service on Nov. 23.

"The Pilgrims and Indians shared not only food but information," Rubovits said. "I'm sure the Indians taught the Pilgrims all about corn and turkeys and how to survive in the wilderness. And the Pilgrims, I'm sure, taught the Indians about weaving and metal smithing, so it was win-win all the way around."

He sees ecumenism in the same light.

"I think that if we're going to be reasonable individuals living in a community, the idea of sharing ideals and philosophies is vitally important," Rubovits said. "I'm not so certain that Jewish people have the corner on the market and neither does any other religion so we'd better share."

People from various faith communities are invited to worship as one body at the Joliet area's third Community Thanksgiving Worship Service. It begins at 6 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church of Joliet, the third religious institution to open its doors to the event.

In 2006, the Joliet Jewish Congregation hosted the event; St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church hosted it in 2007.

This year's participating faith communities are Faith Lutheran Church in Joliet, St. Edward and Christ Episcopalian Church in Joliet, Joliet Jewish Congregation, St. John Missionary Baptist Church in Joliet, Westminster Presbyterian Church in Joliet and First Presbyterian Church in Joliet.,4_5_JO20_GIVETHANKS_S1.article

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Good stuff: California

Ther New York Times on the wild fire in California and some small miracles. I'm told that the monks are Episcopal and the nuns catholic.

Monks Turn to Reflection With Monastery in Ruins

Early last Friday, fire consumed most of the complex where the monks had chanted, studied the stars and welcomed guests from around the world. The next afternoon, they returned to survey the damage.

“We were very quiet,” Brother Joseph Brown recalled in a telephone interview Tuesday. “We just looked around. We were in shock.”

By the time the Tea Fire, in Santa Barbara County, was under control, all that remained of the 60-year-old monastery itself were a skeletal archway, a charred iron cross and a large Angelus bell.

Two small artist’s studios near the main building were intact. An icon of Christ that Brother Brown had been painting with pigments made from egg yolk and mineral powder was still on a desk. A cello sat a few feet away, unharmed. In the chaos of wind and fire, a sheriff’s deputy had moved another monk’s telescope outside, where it remained unscathed.

“In the midst of all this destruction,” Brother Brown, 46, said Tuesday, “miracles happened all over the place.”

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

FORT WORTH: Three loyalist congregations merge

From Episcopal News Service, the remnant of three non-schism parishes join together.

The red and gold banner was hand-made; the altar, a card table; the credence (side) table, a TV-tray and hymnals and prayer books were scarce as the Episcopal Church in Parker County met for its first Sunday worship on November 16 in an elementary school cafeteria.

It was one day after a majority of the diocese had voted to realign with the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, but the worshippers from three congregations gathered to celebrate remaining with the Episcopal Church.

"I like being an Episcopalian," said Victoria Prescott, who helped organize the gathering of about 20.

"I treasure the splendid diversity and tolerance of the Episcopal Church and how marvelously our liturgical life knits us together," said Prescott, an attorney with the Securities and Exchange Commission in Fort Worth. "And I love the way we manage to combine our rich catholic heritage with an understanding that God's revelation to us continues."

The group, made up of worshippers formerly from St. Francis of Assisi, Willow Park; All Saints, Weatherford and Holy Apostles Church, chose the McCall Elementary School because "it is located in one of the fastest-growing areas of Texas and we do intend to reach out to the community," said Prescott.

Some thoughts on life at St. Michael's by Kathie Kendall

Kathie Kendall a member of St. Michael's and someone who is very involved in the life of the parish, took it upon herself to write the following and asked that I post it. Thank you Kathie for your encouragement and prayers.

When I entered the sanctuary this past Sunday I immediately saw two small children sitting, very comfortably, with their Sunday school teacher (not their parents). They were waiting with excited anticipation to take their part in delivering donated food items to the altar to be blessed by our Rector. These items had been donated by fellow parishioners serving as the Body of Christ. Then I watched a fellow parishioner straighten Jim’s stole so that it lay correctly before he processed down the aisle to begin our worship he does every Sunday.

I had just finished teaching a Sunday school class to students that come every Sunday to continue in their walk of faith, One junior high student began our class with a prayer of thanks that we are free to gather together, happy to share in fellowship with one another and eager to enhance their knowledge of Scripture. During the week there have been Bible studies to attend with fellow Christians. There were meals prepared and delivered to the Neighborhood Academy. Faith in Action volunteers are active in our community. The youth of our Church spent part of Saturday raking leaves for people who needed this service. Our Church hosted a wedding, friends met in our church to witness this Sacrament, with our Rector officiating. Women met to prepare our altar for Sunday worship so we could share the body and blood of Christ.

I am touched by Jim’s blessing for children too young to receive communion, by our Church’s commitment to support our young, newly baptized members, by Jim’s instruction to our children receiving their first communion, by the way our children are welcomed and loved as we worship together... all a direct reflection of how we serve as the body of Christ.

When I first attended St. Michael’s I was sorely in need of a spiritual guidance, a church home and a church family. I walked into St. Michael’s and felt the presence of God. Upon returning the next week and being greeted by name by Jim, I realized that I had found both my church home and my church family. Jim has been my spiritual guide and I appreciate his gift to preach. I believe that Jim fulfills the duties, obligations and ministrations entrusted to him. I believe he has nourished us and continues to strengthen us to glorify God, both by his instruction and example.

Jim and our church family have stood beside me and my family during both happy and sad times. I have never felt alone or forsaken and will be forever grateful for all that has come to mean to me and my family.
My heart breaks for the extremely difficult position in which Jim has been placed. My heart breaks for our fellow Christians that feel they must leave our church due to whatever reason or for wherever they genuinely feel their hearts are leading them.

I know how confused so many of us feel and I mourn the loss of members of our church family. I have listened to people that have turned to Jim and wanted answers that he
doesn’t have or that they don’t want to hear. I have heard criticism of Jim because he either isn’t keeping us informed enough or keeping us informed too much. I don’t feel that Jim has misled us and I do believe that Jim continues to welcome all people to worship with us, I believe that Jim continued to feed us. I also don’t feel that God has left St. Michael’s and I pray that eventually the people that have felt the need to find another church home will return to St. Michael’s when they realize that they may never be in a more supportive and loving fellowship. I just wanted you to hear from someone who isn’t leaving and who will continue to support and pray for Jim and St. Michael’s.

I would ask that you all keep Jim in your prayers:

Dear Lord, We are called to support our Rector. We give thanks that you have called Jim to lead us and bear the responsibility and authority to maintain the unity of our Church. Jim must serve as mediator between hurt and conflicted members of our church and other places he is called to be. Even Jesus found making everyone happy an impossible task. Jim needs our prayers, encouragement, appreciation, respect and honor. Lord, we lift up the hands of Jim and his family, give them shelter and rest. We pray that You will preserve their family time, that You will cover their home, that their financial needs be met. We ask that You protect them and let them know how much they are loved In Jesus name ................ Amen

Submitted by: Kathie Kendall

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Conservative Anglicans Push Formation of Rival American Body

Another report on the proposed new province.

Leaders of the Common Cause Partnership, a federation representing more than 100,000 Anglican Christians in North America, will unveil the draft to the public on Dec. 3 at Wheaton Evangelical Free Church in Wheaton, Ill., as they reaffirm biblical truth and Anglican tradition – two things they believe the U.S. Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada have abandoned.

The new Anglican church structure in North America is expected to be recognized by several bishops, mainly from the Global South. But the Common Cause leaders do not expect Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, the spiritual leader of the global Anglican Communion, to immediately recognize the body.

Although the intention is to work with the Anglican Communion, conservative leaders had stated earlier that Anglicanism was not "determined necessarily through recognition by the Archbishop of Canterbury."


"One conclusion of the Global Anglican Future Conference held in Jerusalem last June was that the time for the recognition of a new Anglican body in North America had arrived," stated Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh, moderator of Common Cause Partnership, and potential head of the new North American province. "The public release of our draft constitution is an important concrete step toward the goal of a biblical, missionary and united Anglican Church in North America."

Episcopal leader says split will have little impact locall

Wishful thinking in Ft. Worth. Its hard to believe that the names of these towns are real. Sounds like somewhere Granny Clampett might frequent.

The theologically conservative Diocese of Fort Worth voted Saturday to split from the liberal-leaning Episcopal Church, the fourth traditional diocese to do so in a long-running debate over the Bible, gay relationships and other issues.

Father John Phelps, who leads congregations at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Mineral Wells as (well as) the Episcopal churches at Possum Kingdom Lake and Graham, said the decision to separate from the national church should have little impact on local church members.

“In one sense it doesn’t mean anything at all, we’ll be the same as we were,” said Phelps. “We’ll use the same Bible and same prayer book, we’ll meet at the same places. I will preach on the same topics. People in the congregations will hear the same message about Jesus Christ and the gospel. In that sense, nothing will change.”

National Cathedral Cuts Jobs, Programs

From the Washington Post. More bad news for the Natioanl Cathedral.

Just six months after its last round of cuts, the century-old institution plans to shut down a historic building on its grounds, cut back on choir performances, shrink its lecture and class schedule, outsource its retail operation and rely on volunteers to take over other functions, the Rev. Samuel Lloyd III, dean of the Episcopal cathedral, said in an interview yesterday.

"This is a very difficult time and it breaks my heart what we're doing with our staff," Lloyd said.

The stone cathedral, whose Gothic towers loom over Northwest Washington, attracted 435,500 visitors last year. It serves as the cathedral for the Episcopal Diocese of Washington and as a symbolic gathering place for the nation. Three presidential funerals have been held there.

Cathedral leaders said that worshipers at the five Sunday services probably will notice only subtle changes -- fewer altar flowers, thinner worship folders. The thousands of tourists who stream through each day will see few signs of the cuts.

Good Stuff in TEC: Pittsburgh

Our parish, St. Micahels' have been long time supporters of the neighborhood Academy. An excellent school and ministry to inner city kids.

A New School Van The Neighborhood Academy: Pittsburgh, PA

We have been thrilled to have another van this year to help transport students to sporting events, field trips and performances. The importance of our having two vans lies in our experiential learning trips and our after-school programming; both are essential to our holistic approach to our students’ development. Recently our 11th and 12th graders attended a theater performance of August Wilson’s Radio Golf without us having to rent a bus at a cost of $350 per trip. We also now have a competitive volleyball team who can use a van for matches but still leave an available van for use by the Arts Connection program or other field trips.

After their academic day, our African Drumming and Dance Corps can go to a performance and the golf students can get to the golf course, again, without us having to rent a van. There are many more examples of how, just after 2 months of school, the new van has created increased occasions for learning outside of the classroom including a camping trip, museum visits, a trip to the Carnegie Science Center and an overnight trip with our seniors to visit Allegheny College.

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Don't hang them, pleads Tutu

Anglican Bishops speak out against the death penalty in the Caribbean

Tutu, in a statement issued through the human rights organisation, Amnesty International - which is itself opposed to capital punishment - said while Jamaica's murder rate was alarmingly high and made such a decision difficult, studies have shown that in some countries the death penalty has been used as a tool of repression against the poor and racial or ethnic minorities.

".It is imposed and inflicted arbitrarily. It is an irrevocable punishment, resulting inevitably in the execution of people innocent of any crime. It is a violation of fundamental human rights," said the South African.

"Those held guilty of acts of violence must be held to account. But we must remember that human rights protect the best of us as well as the worst of us, which is why they protect all of us. Even the most callous of murderers amongst us retain their human rights," he said.

At the same time, 14 regional Anglican Bishops last week passed a resolution opposing the death penalty in the Caribbean, and urged the church, state and civil society to deal with the root causes of crime and violence.

Bishop Pierre calls for prayer for Congo on 23 November

From Anglican Communion News Service

As you know, the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo continues to fester. Much is still underreported. In addition to the crisis in the Goma region, there are two areas of rebel activity in Congo which have not hit the news: the Dungu area, in the north, where the Lord's Resistance Army has attacked villages and abducted adults and children in recent weeks, and also the Gety/Aveba/Nyankunde region, close to Bunia, where a new militia group emerged in late September and displaced many people from their homes.

Our Anglican sisters and brothers in those areas have been deeply affected, and are in the forefront of relief efforts and peacemaking.

I am echoing Archbishop Fidèle Dirokpa's call for a day of prayer for peace in the Congo on Sunday 23 November.

You can use the following prayer, if you like, or do your own.
O God of peace and abundant life,
You call peacemakers your children.
Let your Holy Spirit guide and govern all those who are making peace in Congo,
and give them success,
So that all your people may have that abundant life promised through your beloved Son, Jesus Christ,
who lives and reigns with you and the same Spirit, one God in Holy Trinity. Amen.

Legal fight brews over St. Aidan's

Apparently Canada doesn't know the difference between Vermont and New Hampshire. Well its better than confusing New Hampshire and New Mexico! More property battles this time in Huron (which is someplace up there). Oh Canada !

The battle over scripture is escalating between two factions of the Anglican Church, with each claiming ownership of St. Aidan's on Wyandotte Street East.

Rev. Tom Carman represents the 109 church members who voted Sept. 28 to break away from the Huron diocese of the Anglican Church of Canada and join the conservative, breakaway Anglican Network in Canada.
That leaves up to 50 members who have no place to go, and who want their building back.

The split is over the ANIC's views that human sexuality is between a man and woman within marriage.
PLUNGED INTO DEBATE The Anglican Church of Canada was plunged into the debate when a church in New Westminster, B.C., agreed in 2002 to perform same-sex marriages, and a year later an openly gay bishop was ordained in Vermont.

Good Stuff in TEC: North Carolina

Efforts to end world hunger happen right here

Three years ago an estimated 30,000 people worldwide died from hunger-related issues each year. Now, according to the organization Stop Hunger Now, that number is 25,000 and dropping.

That the number is dropping is thanks, in part, to organizations like Stop Hunger Now and local groups willing to pitch in and make a difference, according to Terry Brown, a volunteer coordinator with the relief agency. Eighty members of Christ Episcopal Church in Elizabeth City were joined by Brown to help make a difference this past weekend, packaging and sending 8,000 meals to school lunch programs in Africa.

Brown, whose group is based in Raleigh, says churches and various organizations like Christ Church contact his organization and arrange to purchase the needed supplies and organize an assembly line to package the items for shipment.

“It’s truly the best sense of doing,” he says. It’s about fundraising and physical participation in the solution of a problem that has global proportions.

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Contemplating Heaven, but Drilling Deep Down

The New York Times on General Seminary's geothermal good luck-

For millions of years, invisible streams of water have run deep in the earth below Manhattan at a constant temperature of 65 degrees, a source of energy that seems beyond exhaustion — and beyond reach. But eight months ago, a seminary in Chelsea began to pump water from those streams to heat its buildings in the winter and cool them in the summer.

“It’s forever noiseless, forever pollution-less, forever carbon-free,” said Maureen Burnley, the executive vice president of the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church.

For the seminary, and now about 60 other places in Manhattan, the unseen bounty of the earth is being harvested by geothermal pumps. Manhattan is geologically suited for these deep wells. From a depth of 1,500 to 1,800 feet, the pumps deliver the consistently moderate temperatures of underground water to the surface, where it works like a refrigerant. It carries energy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Plans to create a conservative province ‘disturbing,’ says primate

Canada's take on the the new North American Province which will be announced in a few weeks.

News of a plan to create a new North American Anglican province that would be defined by conservative theology rather than a geographic location may have been greeted with enthusiasm by delegates at the Anglican Network in Canada’s first synod last week, but Archbishop Fred Hiltz, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, described the plan as “disturbing.”

The plan is scheduled to be publicly released on Dec. 3 in Chicago at a gathering of the Common Cause Partnership, a coalition of conservative Anglicans who oppose moves within the Anglican Church of Canada toward blessing same-sex unions and the ordination of an openly gay man as an Episcopal bishop in the U.S.

“What’s quite disturbing, in my opinion, about this proposal is the determination to create a province based on theological grounds,” Archbishop Hiltz said Nov.17. “The creation of provinces, as I have always understood it, is based on mission. It is based on a commitment to embrace and give flesh to an expression of the gospel in a particular context. There is a geography associated with that context, there is a set of cultural needs, a set of social needs.”

Primates Hold Key to New Province’s Recognition

The Living Church has figured out the constitutional process for a new province. Two thirds of 38 primates is either 25 or 26 depending on whether you round up or down.

It is the primates, not the Archbishop of Canterbury, who are directly responsible for granting official status to a new Anglican Communion province. That responsibility is spelled out under section 3 of the constitution of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC).

The constitution explains that a new province may be admitted “with the assent of two-thirds of the primates of the Anglican Communion.”

Assuming that at least two-thirds of the primates of the Anglican Communion do consent to the formation of another province in North America when they meet in February, it is likely that the matter would come before the ACC when it meets in Jamaica next May.

The ACC was formed following a resolution of the 1968 Lambeth Conference,which discerned the need for more frequent and more representative contact among the churches than was possible through a once-a-decade Lambeth Conference of bishops. It first met in Limuru, Kenya, in 1971.

Good Stuff in TEC: Dallas

The Other Side of the Bridge

I recently was part of a mission team from St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Frisco that went to Belize to facilitate a three-day training seminar for teachers in the Anglican Diocese of Belize school system. The training was scheduled for the end of our weeklong trip. So after staying our first night in Belize City, we took a 90-minute water-taxi ride to San Pedro to visit HolyCrossAnglicanSchool.

My husband and I have followed the school pretty closely since before it opened, so I was beyond excited to get to San Pedro and see and be a part of the school that I had only seen in photos.

When I first got off the water taxi, I was taken aback by how beautiful San Pedro was. The water was so clear and the sand was a bright white. It was just how I expected a resort island to be.Link
We walked a short ways down the beach and crossed the bridge entering the community of San Mateo, which is where the school is located. The stark contrast from one side of the bridge to the other was unbelievable.

I remember thinking to myself, I only walked just a few steps, why are conditions so drastically different on this side of the bridge?

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

The tensions between moderates and hardliners among the Church of England's evangelicals have come to a head

The Guardian report on what happened at the Evangelical Conference in London Saturday. It looks like liberals aren't the only ones who manipulate by parliamentary procedure. At any rate it shows how deep the divisions are among conservatives relative to Gafcon and a new province. This one's worth going to the link and reading in its entirety.

The chair of CEEC, Richard Turnbull, is the Principal of Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, which is currently being inspected by the Church of England following the controversial multiple resignations and sackings there.

He proposed a motion in the afternoon which was not on the agenda published beforehand, but merely put on the chairs prior to the beginning of the consultation, with the added note that "no amendments will be permitted". Some saw the motion, others did not. It was not mentioned at all from the front in the morning.

The motion, in effect, backed the Gafcon movement (which is about to set up a separate "province" in North America) while ignoring the process urged by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Lambeth Conference, which is supported by many evangelical Anglicans. This pursues, with patience and urgency, the Covenant for the Anglican Communion and a pastoral forum for conservatives in North America.

At the consultation, our unity was clear in that we are committed to the teaching of the communion on sexuality and opposed to the developments in North America which have caused this crisis. However, we differed on ecclesiology, the shape of the church. Some spoke up for Gafcon and others for the Lambeth process. The difficulty of the motion was that it seemed to be trying to force this division by being sprung on us at the last minute without opportunity for amendment.

Pedroia named AL MVP

Just call him Mr. November. Or better yet, refer to Dustin Pedroia as the Most Valuable Player of the American League.

The second baseman of the Boston Red Sox continued his rapid burst into the national spotlight on Tuesday, when he was recognized with that impressive honor.

Though most pundits expected the race for MVP to be agonizingly close, Pedroia won in comfortable fashion, garnering 16 out of 28 first-place votes. He also received six second-place votes, four third-place votes and one fourth-place vote for 317 total points.

Runner-up Justin Morneau of the Twins received seven first-place votes and finished with 257 points. Boston first baseman Kevin Youkilis finished third, tallying two first-place votes and 201 points in a third-place finish.

Following a 2007 season in which Pedroia helped fuel the Red Sox to a World Series championship and won the AL Rookie of the Year Award, the right-handed hitting machine staged quite an encore.

Appointment of new Bishop tears Ondo Anglican Church apart

More troubling news about the African church. This time in Nigeria. The king of Ile Oluji (Alayeluwa Oba Engr) is pictured. Couldn't resist the hat!

HELL was let loose yesterday as irate youths in Ile Oluji area of Ondo State threw explosives inside the St. Peters Anglican Church to protest the appointment of a new Bishop for the newly established Diocese in the town.
Also, elders of the town displayed placards in rejection of the appointment of the new Bishop of the diocese Venerable Christopher Omotunde.

Those against him raised nine-point ground of objection to the appointment and urged the primate to rescind the decision and appoint a new Bishop for the diocese.

Some of the placards carried by the protesting members of the church read “We reject Omotunde as our Bishop”, “Omotunde is not fit to be our Bishop”.

Vanguard learnt that the Sunday service was abruptly halted as the youths stormed the church and threw the explosives.

Omotunde was said to be away to Abuja when the youths stormed the church yesterday.
Some people were said to have been injured as the worshipers fled to different directions for fear of being hurt by the explosives.

The yearly annual children harvest slated for yesterday was abruptly concluded following the noise of the explosive that scared the children out of the church. Some of the youths however threatened to march to Vicarage and burn it even as pleas for pastors and elders of the Church were rebuffed by them.

Catholic and Anglican Bishops hold bilateral meeting

The Church of England House of Bishops and the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales gathered together for a second bi-lateral meeting, this time at Lambeth Palace yesterday. In 2006, they met together in Leeds for study and worship.

The meeting was chaired by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams and the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor.

The meeting takes the form of a spiritual retreat reflecting on the office and ministry of bishops as Christ's disciples. The day is based on prayer, discussion and a desire for further development of our churches' shared Christian witness. Scripture readings and addresses by the Archbishop and the Cardinal will guide the bishops' reflections.

Statement from Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor.

"Following the successful meeting and joint worship in Leeds in 2006, we have been looking forward to meeting again to reflect and pray together. We are sure the day will help develop our common Christian witness and the warm relations that exist between the Anglican and Catholic Bishops in England & Wales, both locally and on shared national projects.

"On our journey forward, though our communion remains imperfect, our partnership in mission and service to the people of our country is based on our Christian faith and rooted in our common baptism. Presenting our shared Christian witness to society, and working together to for the common good in society, continues to be crucially important for us."

The meeting is held in line with the mandate of the International Anglican-Roman Catholic Commission for Unity and Mission (Communion in Mission, Mississauga, May 2000: see notes to editors below). IARCCUM is a joint commission of bishops, responsible to the Anglican Communion and the Holy See for finding practical ways to express the fruits of the dialogue between Anglicans and Roman Catholics. Its mandate draws on the recommendations of the Anglican-Roman Catholic Joint Preparatory Commission in Malta, in 1968.

Good Stuff in TEC: North Carolina

Two Englewood churches combine to feed the hungry

Pastor Sue of Four Square Church knew there Englewood families having financial troubles long before those living in fancier parts of town acknowledged that the crisis was serious. She met up with Pat Knox, who worships at St. David's Episcopal Church, and The Rev. Arthur Lee and -- as they say -- the rest is Englewood history.

The two women joined forces to work to make life better for those who have been affected by the current problems in the economy, particularly families. The joint effort is called "Just Neighbors" to indicate that the help is from local friends and neighbors.

"Just Neighbors" meets at St. David's on the fourth Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. You're all invited to stop in on Nov. 25.

Since September the churches have joined together to serve dinners from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the last Saturday of the month at FourSquare Church, 180 Langsner St.

You can see all of the Good Stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Breakaway Episcopalians to unveil constitution

The Washington Times on the "new Province" to be announced by seven (or is it twelve) of the 38 primates in December.

"We do not accept that Anglican identity is determined necessarily through recognition by the Archbishop of Canterbury," the conservatives' statement said.

Rumors of an umbrella group that will take in all former and disaffected Episcopalians - who have been leaving the denomination en masse since the consecration of the openly gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson in 2003 - have been circulating for months.

On Saturday at a church in Boston, Pittsburgh Bishop Robert Duncan and Kenyan Bishop William Murdoch, both of them bishops with two Anglican provinces, announced the Dec. 3 meeting. Greeted by a standing ovation, it was the first definite public announcement of the formation of a new Anglican province.

Recognition by significant numbers of the world's 38 Anglican primates or archbishops could happen as early as February, when the primates will have their annual meeting in Alexandria, Egypt.

Seven GAFCON primates, representing more than half of the 77-million-member Anglican Communion, indicated in June they will recognize the new province. Another five have joined them since then, Bishop Minns said.

Christianity Today's report is here -

Crowning achievement: Pujols NL MVP

Albert Pujols wins the National League MVP and the Clemente award. The Clemente award is given based on sportsmanship and Community involvement. For you soccer fans out there MVP stands for Most Valuable Player.

The National League's best player has also been named its most valuable.

Albert Pujols' magnificent season earned him his second NL Most Valuable Player Award. Pujols' 369 points bested the 308 points garnered by Philadelphia's Ryan Howard, who beat him out by a narrow margin to win the 2006 MVP.

Pujols has finished in the top 10 in the voting in every one of his eight Major League seasons, and has been fourth or better seven times. He is the 11th player to win two NL MVP Awards, and he's one of three active players with a pair of MVPs. Additionally, Pujols became the third player, along with Sammy Sosa in 1998 and Rod Carew in 1977, to win the MVP and the Roberto Clemente Award in the same year.

MVP here-

Clemente award here -

Monday, November 17, 2008

Save Canterbury Cathedral Appeal reaches £9 million

From Anglican Communion News Service- (Nine million pounds is about 13.5 million dollars)

The Save Canterbury Cathedral Appeal has now reached the £9 million mark. The Appeal, established to fund an extensive £50 million conservation and development programme, has made good progress during the two years since its launch enabling critical conservation work to be carried out.

Following its high profile launch in October 2006, the Appeal quickly settled down to business and has been attracting donations from a number of sources. The focus for the Appeal in the first two years has primarily been the local community of Kent.

Commenting on this new milestone, Matthew Butler, Chief Executive of the Save Canterbury Cathedral Appeal, said; “We have seen a tremendous response to the Appeal in the last year, particularly when considering the current economic climate. We have continued to be delighted by the generosity of people who have donated financially, run events or volunteered their time. There is still a long way to go - £41 million to be precise, and we have much planned for the next few years to ensure we secure these donations.”

Convention Planned to Form New Anglican Province

From the Living Church.

Significant details about the plan were revealed in a short AnglicanTV internet video clip containing remarks delivered by Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh and Bishop Bill Murdoch, a missionary bishop to the U.S. consecrated by the Anglican Church of Kenya. The board of trustees for the Anglican Relief and Development Fund (ARDF) met Nov. 7-12 at Christ Church, Vero Beach, Fla., according to information published on the parish website.

The ARDF board contains a number of primates who have been sympathetic to the objectives of the Common Cause Partnership. Collectively they refer to themselves as the “Primates Council.” During the meeting at Christ Church, some of those primates present agreed to recognize the new province if the leadership of the CCP would “set aside territorial issues and ego struggles” and sign the so-called Jerusalem Declaration drafted during the Global Anglican Future Conference in the Middle East in June.

Schoolgirl knuckleballer headed to Japan pro league

A 16-year-old schoolgirl with a mean knuckleball has been selected as the first woman ever to play alongside the men in Japanese professional baseball.

Eri Yoshida was drafted for a new independent league that will launch in April, drawing attention for a side-armed knuckler that her future manager Yoshihiro Nakata said was a marvel.

"I never dreamed of getting drafted," Yoshida told reporters Monday, a day after she was selected to play for the Kobe 9 Cruise.

"I have only just been picked by the team and have not achieved anything," she said. "I want to play as a pro eventually in a higher league."

Yoshida, 155 centimetres (five feet) tall and weighing 52 kilograms (114 pounds), says she wants to follow in the footsteps of the great Boston Red Sox knuckleballer Tim Wakefield.

A female professional baseball federation existed for a few years in the 1950s, but Yoshida will become Japan's first-ever woman to play alongside professional male players.

Thanks to Bruce Robison for passing this along.

Good Stuff in TEC: Illinois

Faith, hope and financial help

Financial planning is a newer area for many churches. Some pastors are uncomfortable discussing money because they don't want to appear self-serving. Others feel money is too personal to discuss in church, leaders say, or haven't received the proper training.

"In an awful lot of churches, it's the silent subject," Towner said.

That's starting to change.

The trend is gaining popularity as churches seek new and creative ways to connect with their congregations and respond to a growing need for practical, day-to-day advice.

"Rather than asking what the church can get from you, they are asking what the church can do for you," Bentley said. "It's a very welcome shift."

Her congregation's current economic anxiety prompted Pastor Deborah Seles to recently hold a free seminar on spirituality and money at St. Philip's Episcopal Church in Palatine.

It was the first time her church held such an event, and Seles said she would consider organizing resume-writing and job seminars.

"You want to offer people some practical help, following the example of Jesus," she said.

You can see all of the good stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Good Stuff in TEC: Texas

Community Food Drive seeking funding, volunteers

The effort began about 20 years ago under the direction of the Rev. Bettie Kennedy, still a driving force behind the distribution. The first drive began with about 50 baskets given out through the help of Collins Chapel CME Church. The next year it grew to 220 baskets, then 350, expanding each year to its current number averaging around 1,000 baskets.

Baskets are taken to homes across the area, and to people in locations including Buckner House, the Foster Grandparent program and retirement homes including Pinewood Park and the Lewis-Toran Community Center.

"It's just climbed and climbed," Love said. "It's a pretty far-reaching effort."

Volunteers gather on one Saturday morning a year the week before Thanksgiving. They begin with prayer before forming an assembly line, filling cardboard boxes with ham, vegetables and all the staples to provide the hungry one holiday meal and then some. More volunteers load baskets into cars, trucks and vans, delivering cheer throughout Lufkin and adjacent communities.

The drive is one of the few true community efforts in Lufkin, with people of all ages and backgrounds working together toward a single goal — to feed the hungry.

St. Cyprian's Episcopal Church got involved in the drive in 1998 under the encouragement of the Rev. Hugh Bell, former rector, and the tradition has continued, with the church playing a major part in funding and volunteer support, said Love, who is a member.

Love encouraged others in the community to join in the effort by making donations of their time and money. Volunteers drivers are needed. Maps and city sections with addresses identified on them will be given out Saturday to assist drivers with deliveries.

You can see all of the good stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Good Stuff in TEC: New Mexico

Tough times mean extra work at soup kitchen

John Cdebaca, who's homeless, said he has been eating meals at the kitchen for the past two years. He said he's noticed more people using the service in recent weeks, especially low-income residents who aren't necessarily homeless.

Cdebaca said the service is valuable and he'd manage to cope if it were ever curtailed, though others would suffer more.

"For a lot of people — it's their only prepared meal," he said. "Now that nights are getting colder, if you don't have something in you, you'll freeze."

El Caldito Soup Kitchen was founded under a different name in 1984 at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church. With the help of the help of the local Catholic and Jewish communities, the operation expanded over the years from just two days a week to six days a week. The kitchen gained a home on the Mesilla Valley Community of Hope campus in 1998. It serves an estimated 70,00 meals each year, according to its Web site.

Anderson said the organization can always use donations, especially of money.
Daniel and Mary Farren, Las Cruces retirees, were among a group of residents that helped found El Caldito and have served until recently as volunteers. The two have plenty of stories about the clients who have enjoyed meals at the kitchen, including one about a man who used to take several bags of food home with him each day. Daniel Farren said another soup kitchen volunteer offered the man a ride to his apartment one day, and in the course of dropping him off, learned that his "to-go" bags were distributed to different neighbors who needed the food.

You can see all of the good stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Good Stuff in TEC: Maine

Church Takes Part In "Operation Christmas Child"

The Trinity Episcopal Church in Saco is taking part in a charity program donating Christmas gifts to disadvantaged kids in foreign countries.

"Operation Christmas Child" is a nationwide program that was started by the Samaritan's Purse International Relief Fund. Gift-givers pack a shoebox full of gifts, and that box is sent to the kids.

The Trinity Episcopal Church has been collecting gifts since September, and the program coordinator has made up a Christmas tree chart to help show their progress. As the boxes come in, a star sticker is added to the tree.

You can see all of the good stuff posts by clicking on Good Stuff in the labels below.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Big Unit on Cubs' radar

Randy Johnson is being courted by the Cubs. Maybe next year is the one ! For you soccer fans out there the Cubs haven't won a World Series since 1908.

CHICAGO -- With Kerry Wood out of the picture and Ryan Dempster and Jake Peavy out in the open, the Cubs are considering another big name -- the Big Unit.

Free agent left-hander Randy Johnson, 45, would draw interest from the Cubs if the club is unable to re-sign the All-Star Dempster or acquire the former Cy Young Award winner Peavy. Johnson, a likely future Hall of Famer, is five wins shy of 300.

The Cubs are one of six teams who have contacted Johnson's Chicago-based agents, Al Nero and Barry Meister. The pitcher is unlikely to re-sign with the Diamondbacks.

Johnson knows Lou Piniella from playing for him in Seattle, and he would prefer to remain in the National League.

"It's very preliminary," Nero said Saturday, two days after Johnson filed for free agency. "Obviously, there is a tremendous amount of mutual respect between Lou and Randy. It would be natural for us to consider this."

Diocese in Texas Leaves Episcopal Church

The New York Times report on the Ft. Worth schism. Judy Mayo is a fixture at General Convention. We're going to miss her.

Judy Mayo, director of children’s education at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Fort Worth, spoke in favor of the break, saying she was deeply troubled by an “anything goes” philosophy in which some Episcopal churches perform same-sex unions.

“If something is morally wrong in Texas, my friends, it is wrong in Montana or California or Connecticut or Kentucky,” Ms. Mayo said. “It’s either right or wrong according to God’s word.”

She added: “The train of the Episcopal Church and the apostolic faith are simply on a collision course now. It is time to make a clear and clean break.”

At least five of the Fort Worth diocese’s 55 parishes are expected to remain aligned with the Episcopal Church as they fight to override the separation.


The Fort Worth diocese, formed in 1982 as a spinoff of the Dallas diocese, is one of three that refuse to ordain women as priests, a practice the national church voted to accept in 1976.

The Washington Post take is here -

Church of England Evangelicals dodge homosexuality vote

I find the following interesting and a little curious considering the post below it which would appear to be about the same meeting.

Church of England Evangelicals meeting on Saturday refused to vote to establish their position on homosexuality -- an issue that has caused deep splits within the worldwide Anglican communion.

The Church of England Evangelical Council met in central London but the 300 attendees declined an opportunity to vote.
"The opinions expressed were a wide range of opinions," said The Reverend Doctor Richard Turnbull, chairman of the Church of England Evangelical Council. "People decided that they didn't actually want to vote on a resolution.

The disadvantage of that is you then don't exactly know what people think."
The council meets again on December 4.

The Lambeth Conference in April, a once-a-decade gathering of bishops from the world's 77-million-strong Anglican Communion, was boycotted by around 200 bishops over the consecration five years ago of the first openly gay bishop, Gene Robinson, the bishop of New Hampshire in the United States.
The issue of homosexuality remains a turbulent matter for the Anglican communion.

Anglican Church lacks leadership, say bishops

From the London Telegraph. Dissension in the Episcopal ranks in England.

In a speech to conservative evangelicals, who debated proposals for a new "church within a church", the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali said that there has been a lack of discipline.
Traditionalists have been upset that the Episcopal Church escaped punishment despite consecrating Gene Robinson as Anglicanism's first openly gay bishop.

The Bishop of Rochester told clergy that the new movement was equivalent to the Reformation in the sixteenth century, which led to the establishment of the Church of England.
He said that the Church has become too "wishy-washy" and urged evangelicals to stand against the liberal agenda.

"No Church can be effective without discipline," said Dr Nazir-Ali.
"That is what this situation is about. We are warned in the Bible about false teaching and persistent immorality.

"We are living at a time when the Church must be counter-cultural and strong. If we're not clear what we're about we haven't got a hope."

He added: "Whenever the Church has become worldly or faithless, it has been reformed.