Monday 17 November 2008

Evangelical Knows

The presentation of Chris Sugden to the National Evangelical Anglican Consultation ought to be read quite carefully, and this passage and a bit is key:

We refuse to abandon our space in the Church of England. The Church of England has always been focused on parishes: the 39 articles speaks of the visible church of Christ is a congregation of faithful people in which the word of God is preached and the sacraments administered. We build on the space we have, strengthen it, and relate it closely to the Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans and the Primates Council. We will keep formal administrative links with the formal Church of England, but our real identity is with Global Anglicanism as defined by the Jerusalem statement and declaration.

GAFCON is our connection to the Global Anglican Communion. The GAFCON Primates and bishops are the true successors to John Stott. The Canterbury network is unsure and even confused about what Global Anglicanism means....

The bold is mine. It is clear from this that the core loyalty is declared: that whilst the GAFCON wants to keep its space in the Church of England, the loyalty is to other authority. This is what is understood as entryism, the core of Religious Trotskyism.

What is clear is that the meeting on the Saturday started with some reflection, but moved into acrimony because of the unadvertised resolution that was take it or leave it. It's presentation was along the lines of do as you are told, to find someone tell Richard Turnbull to do as he was being told by those longer in experience than him.

Here was what Richard Turnbull tried to railroad through, according to Graham Kings's transcription reproduced at Fulcrum:

That this National Evangelical Anglican Consultation, acknowledging that the Church of England professes the faith uniquely revealed in the Holy Scriptures and set forth in the catholic creed and bears witness to this truth in her historic formularies (the Book of Common Prayer, the Thirty-nine Articles of Religion and the Ordinal) and as set out in Canon A5, Article 6 and the Declaration of Assent and mindful, as members of the Anglican Communion, of our obligations to faithful Anglicans across the globe,

(a) express our support for the Jerusalem Declaration’ and

(b) recognising that Evangelical Anglicans will pursue a variety of strategies, support our brothers and sisters in their strategic decisions including those set out in the GAFCON statement made in Jerusalem on 29th June 2008 at the Global Anglican Future Conference gathering attended by 1148 people, including 291 Bishops of the Anglican Communion.

Graham Kings includes the all important additional paper given headed 'Procedure':

For the avoidance of doubt, please note the following:

* No amendments will be permitted

* The motion will be voted on in parts (i.e. (a) and (b) above will be voted on separately)

* The Chairman of the session, the Revd Canon Michael Walters, has full control over the handing of the session to ensure a clear vote and timely finish and no challenges to his ruling are permitted

* The vote will take place no later than 3.55 pm

How to get people's backs up! Clearly there was no trust involved there, no trust because the core group did not want to lose the agenda. That the vote was not taken, due to a procedural move from the floor that itself received a majority vote, matters not as Richard Turnbull at the CEEC will get it voted for anyway. The main thing to avoid was any revision - for revision is revisionism.

Thus the Church of England Evangelical Council is 'representative' (says Richard Turnbull) in the way that the Bolsheviks regarded themselves as the vanguard of the working class. Here is the vanguard of the Evangelicals, who already know that their constituency is incapable, but would rather leave them as incapable than have any decision moderated.

As organised Evangelicalism disintegrates, what is left? Why GAFCON is the only show in town. So the Evangelicals are going to be led by the nose in the same direction regardless. The CEEC meets December 4th to do its own voting.

I could have written the script in advance. Warm words about GAFCON, and criticism about various Anglicans to oppose, some semblance of viewpoints beyond the dominant presentation; a surprise vote and no changes; chaos; the core group carry on regardless as chaos keeps everyone else unorganised.

This has more to do with Machiavelli than Christ and Paul, more to do with Marxism-Leninism and Trotskyism than with Anglican Christianity.

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