Thursday, November 05, 2009

Diversity & Tolerance

Originally posted at the parish blog:

If you immediately condemn anyone who doesn’t quite believe the same as you do as forsaken by Christ’s Spirit, and consider anyone to be the enemy of truth who holds something false to be true, who, pray tell, can you still consider a brother? I for one have never met two people who believed exactly the same thing. This holds true in theology as well.

- Martin Bucer

To my friends who insist that AC-NA will spin apart because of evangelical and catholic and charismatic Anglicans coming together, I say: PHOOEY. How much more classically Anglican can you get than Martin Bucer, a man who started out as a Dominican priest and worked tirelessly to bringing conciliation among the leading lights of the Lutheran, Genevan/Swiss, & English Reformations?


Doug Hagler said...

Since this came up three times on FB I felt I should read it, and that is a good, if a little ironic, quote.

Fr. Chris Larimer said...


I'll meet any Christian on the terms to which they agreed. If they were baptized under the Apostles Creed (and haven't formally reneged it), I hold them accountable to that. If they have taken a further oath (confirmation or embracing the Nicene Creed), then they are accountable to that. If they are officers within a confessional tradition, they should be held accountable to that. I expect no less from others toward me.

Within each of those levels of accountability, one can be as latitudinarian as one's habitus will allow. But it is waffling silliness not to admit some basis of structure or common ground upon which to meet.

For better or worse, Christianity is a doctrine in search of a common life - not the other way around. Thus, we reinforce our koinonia by adhering to dogma.

Sara said...

That is a good quote, fitting the Presby church as well.

Father Robert Lyons said...

Fr. Chris,

Personally, I think the bigger concern is AC-NA's continued disregard for the plain word of Scripture with regards to women's ordination to the presbyterate. I briefly considered incardination with a group that was looking to form a part of the AC-NA, but this kept me out.

If a woman cannot consecrate the Eucharist, than she cannot be a presbyter, and allowing women to be ordained as presbyters or to function in that capacity serves to display a severe misunderstanding of Holy Orders that is dogmatically incompatiable with continued ministry.

Deaconesses are a different issue with very different historic evidences, but women cannot be presbyters by the plain word of Scripture and the evidence of the Church from her earliest day. Refusing to embrace Scripture in this matter simply makes AC-NA another relativist body; albeit one that is less relativist than ECUSA.


Fr. Chris Larimer said...


I agree. That's why I'm so glad that of the 28 ACNA jurisdictions, only 6 allow women priests. It used to be more, but as they studied the issue, they found no Scriptural warrant for it and it was abandoned. (AMiA did this.)

I'm part of FiF-NA, and our diocese and orders are sealed against meddling by those mussed up in the women's ordination issue. I have confidence that within 5 years, there will be no more presbyteral ordinations of women. It will be an irregularity that dies a natural death.

If not, there are other options graciously opened to us over the last 6 months.