Friday, 5 December 2003

schismatic statistics

Update see reply from Dr Giddings here
Considering that one of the key movers in Anglican “Mainstream” is an academic political scientist (and leading General Synod member) who specialises in ombudsman systems, it’s intriguing to see what is happening there with a public petition, designed to show something that everyone already knows, that millions of Anglicans hate the idea of an openly homosexual bishop. But in this case you don’t have to send your name in to get subscribed. Your bishop, or even your archbishop can do it for you, without your knowledge. The subscribed total of names currently includes 168,000 signed up by their bishop in 2 dioceses (Forth Worth, USA and Kitale, Kenya) and another 184,000 in 1 province (South East Asia). Not to mention another 31,467 in 95 parishes whose leaders have signed up their entire membership roll. What’s surprising given their approach is that they have only set a target of 1 million names, when a single transaction from Nigeria or Uganda can easily exceed that figure many times over. But is there any mechanism for aggrieved individuals to seek redress against the misuse of their names in this way, Dr Giddings?

And those are not the only funny figures being used. Elsewhere on that very same web page, we find:

“We in the Network of Confessing Dioceses and Congregations are deeply grateful to our Anglican brothers and sisters around the globe for your support and prayers. We are now thirteen [emphasis mine] dioceses stretching from coast to coast and from Canada to Mexico. We are congregations in another 36 dioceses. A million signatures by Christmas will make an extraordinary difference to us as we seek an unhindered witness to the transforming gospel of Jesus Christ.”
+ Bob Pittsburgh

Now, the Anglican American Council website shows a list of only three affiliated dioceses (Dallas, Fort Worth and Quincy), so this Network must be something else again. And the AAC site lists congregations in many more dioceses than 36. So who exactly are the thirteen dioceses in this network which the petition applauds as follows:

We therefore
Applaud the action of those Bishops in North America
- Who are forming a Network of Confessing Dioceses and Congregations as suggested by the Archbishop of Canterbury, within ECUSA and in good faith with its Constitution.
- Who have designated Bishop Robert Duncan as Convening Bishop (Moderator)
- Who will no longer be at the Lord’s Table with those who have consecrated Gene Robinson (see below).

This is of interest outside the USA because the petition calls on the ABC and other primates individually and severally to do a number of things, including:

- To recognise Bishop Bob Duncan (Pittsburgh) as the duly elected Convening Bishop (Moderator) of the Network and invite him to all events to which the Presiding Bishop of ECUSA is invited.
- To recognise the Convening Bishop (Moderator) in opening ecumenical conversations with other Christian churches.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Friday, 5 December 2003 at 1:50 PM GMT | TrackBack
You can make a Permalink to this if you like
Categorised as: Opinion | silly stuff

Ever notice how the same Christians who say that God’s Truth cannot be arrived at democratically, nonetheless boast of their numbers, ala “majority rule”? W/ that internal contradiction, one could hardly be surprised that their numbers are inflated (into a “majority” that should rule) by often unelected leaders, who deny that the Church should be a democracy.

Posted by: J. Collins Fisher at December 7, 2003 05:55 AM

On a not dissimilar note, thought you might quite enjoy this

Posted by: Dave at December 8, 2003 04:54 PM

Thanks Dave.
And now a second thread on Ship of Fools, this one in Purgatory:
The Anglican Mainstream comedy petition

Posted by: Simon Sarmiento at December 10, 2003 05:54 PM

If the petitioners can get ABC WIlliams to sign would that make it 75 Million signatures and would it mean that Frank and Co support the petition?

Posted by: J. D. Allen at December 12, 2003 03:58 AM