Comments: More from Ephraim Radner

8000 words of clarity then ?

Posted by Laurence Roberts at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 1:07am BST

Good grief, this guy is defensive, offensive and full of himself at he rattles on-and-on against the Episcopal Church and her would think he wasn't a member in good standing of the (strangely unfunded) Anglican Communion Institute and the Covenant Design Group!

Posted by Leonardo Ricardo at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 1:35am BST

Mind-spew, and that's being charitable.

His point under number 2:

"Any attempt to argue that this is not the case involves a profound incoherence: either the matter of “full inclusion” (including to the episcopacy and same-sex unions and blessings) is a matter “indifferent”, and hence is open to compromise for the sake of the Communion; or the matter is one of essential doctrine and discipline, and therefore the bishops should simply confess openly their inability to tolerate and accept alternative views (including within the Communion)."

completely IGNORES the concept of ***"locally-adapted***, built into The Quad.

Matters of full-inclusion ARE essential, as LOCALLY-ADAPTED HERE IN TEC. They are not so (as yet---Come, Lord Jesus!) in some other parts of the AC. How can someone calling himself (!) "Anglican Communion Institute" be so ignorant of this key Anglican concept?

Finally, this from his conclusion:

"It is time to do all we can to assure that the Instruments of Communion be able to do their work unhindered."

And we all know it's TEC "hinders" (esp. LGBTs') which will feel Radner's intended Rod of (Instrumental) Correction?

"If TEC’s bishops do not wish to be a part of this, that is their decision."

Back to the "You're walking away!" canard. For the Love of God, can't Radner stop beating that dead horse?

"Let them have the courage of their convictions; but let us not quietly accept their invented Anglican Christianity that never existed anywhere before."

Yeah, "never existed anywhere before" . . . except, Praise Christ, 2000 years ago in Palestine, and many, many saints following! Alleluia! :-D

God bless the Episcopal Church!

["quietly" accept? AS IF! :-0]

Posted by JCF at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 6:56am BST

Only 8,000 words? That's practically a haiku for Radner.

Posted by JPM at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 9:09am BST

This is a very long article.

I think that might be some kind of understatement....

Anyhoo; I really doubt anyone has the perserverence to read it all.

Concision is a beautiful thing.

In the text there is quite a lot of slight of hand by way of exaggerating the TEC HoB position so as to make it easier to squash.

Occasionally you do come across an interesting point, but you need to put in a lot of work to get there.....

Posted by Craig Nelson at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 1:50pm BST

'Only 8,000 words? That's practically a haiku for Radner.'

mind weighing your words

spirit rises like feather

on breeze

; - )

Posted by Laurence Roberts at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 2:38pm BST

Radner's criticism of the use of anti-colonial and postcolonial discourse misses the mark. Of course the Episcopal Church was founded by a bourgeois revolution among slave holders and those who dispossessed Native American peoples. The remnants of this Episcopal Church are to be found in the old boy network, whether liberal or conservative, and they are by and large institutionalists. What Radner does not understand or chooses to ignore is the extent to which the self-understanding of the progressive wing of the Episcopal Church is forged from the movements for human liberation among poor people, people of color, women, and lgbt folk. These either are colonized peoples or may legitimately understand themselves on this analogy. Like the peoples of the Global South, who are their natural allies, these people are speaking from the underside of history. It is the bourgeois, pro-capitalism, pro-globalization liberals, who mean well but profit immensely from the system of death, together with the Radner's IRD friends who actively support the imperial ambitions of the U.S. who are the voice of empire today. What colonized peoples and those who rightly understand themselves on this analogy have in common is that they turn the discourse of the oppressor/dominant culture upon itself. Hopefully, all oppressed people will come to understand that it is the distinction between center and periphery that must be challenged, as well as the system of domination that enforces such distinctions. Right now, the Global South, convinced by people like Radner, who are not true friends, have convinced them to try to grab the center. This is what I argued in the Anglican Theological Review, and I have yet to see a satisfactory reply, though Radner's ACI colleague Philip Turner did attempt one.

The Lambeth Conference in 1998 (resolution 40) seems to have supported the same kind of move:

2. Calls upon each province and diocese to devise a programme of study, reflection and action in which the following elements should play a part:

(e) the critical examination of the exercise of power, first within congregations and all other Church bodies, and then in secular institutions which affect the lives of all. Insofar as the aim is to achieve a just and sustainable society world-wide, priority must be given to those modes which nurture people's gifts and evoke responsible participation rather than those which dominate and exclude.

Posted by Bill Carroll at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 2:43pm BST

Haiku for Radner

Masters of grammar
Correct all colonials
Who dare to name God

Posted by Bill Carroll at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 3:00pm BST

1 Corinthians 14:19 " the church I would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct others than ten thousand words in a tongue."

My suggested five words?

"God does not like bullying"

Posted by Cheryl Clough at Saturday, 14 April 2007 at 11:17pm BST

Some of us know about the students who write on and on thinking that this is in itself impressive. On top of this, it is almost arrogant in places - the bishops ignoring their own history, he says. Well they were baffled by him. All these bishops did was face up to the concrete realities of their own Church, and that was that.

Posted by Pluralist at Sunday, 15 April 2007 at 1:32am BST

Lambeth Conference Resolutions from 1867
Resolution 6

'That, in the judgement of the bishops now assembled, the whole Anglican Communion is deeply injured by the present condition of the Church in Natal; and that a committee be now appointed at this general meeting to report on the best mode by which the Church may be delivered from the continuance of this scandal, and the true faith maintained. That such report be forwarded to His Grace the Lord Archbishop of Canterbury, with the request that he will be pleased to transmit the same to all the bishops of the Anglican Communion, and to ask for their judgement thereupon.'

Some things don't change much !

Posted by LaurenceRoberts at Sunday, 15 April 2007 at 2:10am BST

As I read Dr. R., his themes are two, plus a corollary implicit.

One. Top down apostolic authority trumps all other sources of authority. Trumps bottoms up church authority through the locally adapted daily lives of all baptized believers. Trumps the sideways relationship authorities of how we actually live nowadays, across overlapping but often quite different circles of belonging, participation, and well, living.

Two. Top down apostolic authority is most genuinely true and trustworthy when it is policing. It may be true and trustworthy in other instances - Radner for now in this essay seems to leave the question more open than I expected, given how closed he is about the matter in other statements. But policing vitamins are a sure and reliable sign of real apostolic authority, flowing in one direction, from the top down.

A corollary. ONLY very conservative Anglican top down authority is reliable, trustworthy, and called by God in Jesus to do police work.

I got a spontaneous, unbidden image of the Anglican crosier as a nightstick. Heavy. Leaded.

What puzzles me is just why Dr. Radner thinks the rest of us should see these claims as so self-evident, so that all he needs to do is state them at great length in order to persuade us.

Yet again, what does Dr. R. studiously omit? Why, that old Anglican vitamin called, agreeing to disagree - while we continue in open-ended inquiry and discussion, shared table fellowship, common prayer, witness, and of course, Tikkun.

These are the more obvious, self-evident things to me. I am puzzled that they mean so very, very, very little to Dr. Radner and his conservative communities of faith. Shoving non-conservative believers outside of the Anglican Communion realigned will only mean that we pursue and live out these formerly Anglican vitamins in the public squares, and possibly in what will then become interfaith venues.

We can do this, of course. But why, when we already have a good start on living this way as a fellowship of autonomous provinces?

Posted by drdanfee at Sunday, 15 April 2007 at 7:37pm BST

'Top down apostolic authority trumps all other sources of authority."
Unless, of course, such authority is said to reside with the See of Peter, in which case top down Apostolic authority is anathema and "following the traditions of men", and what our liberty seeking ancestors in faith broke away from in the Reformation. Four legs good, two legs better!

Posted by Ford Elms at Monday, 16 April 2007 at 7:40pm BST
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