Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Brexit shines light on Church of England rift between leadership and Anglican majority

From The Conversation-

Two recent statements from the leader of the Anglican church, Justin Welby, reflect a growing division in the church between a charismatic-evangelical party and a more mainstream majority. The latter are stronger in numbers but the former are now in power.

Welby’s first statement, issued jointly with his number two, the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, called for a “fresh and uniting vision for all in our country”. It came amid increasingly heated debate over Brexit and their much more neutral stance contrasts with the fervour with which both archbishops backed Remain at the time of the referendum.

The second statement was more theological. Welby told a Christian radio channel that he prays in tongues every morning. Like a masonic handshake, this identified Welby to his fellow charismatic Christians as one of them. Both archbishops are part of this revivalist form of Christianity, which identifies the gift of tongues (praying in a language they believe is given to them by God) as a sign of possession by the Holy Spirit and of being “born again”.

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