An open letter to my fellow Primates - Abp Peter Akinola

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and our One and Only Saviour Jesus, the Christ.

I write on the 490th anniversary of that moment in Church history when Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Cathedral in Wittenberg in which he asserted, among other things, that the truth of the gospel must always take precedence over the structures of the church. It is becoming increasingly clear that we are facing a similar situation today. While it has been my hope that we would be able to share these reflections face to face it seems unlikely that we will be called to meet together in the near future and so I offer these thoughts by letter.

It has been repeatedly stated and most succinctly summarized in the report, ‘Road to Lambeth’ we face a two fold crisis in the Anglican Communion: a crisis of doctrine and a crisis of leadership, in which the failure of the “Instruments” of the Communion to exercise discipline has called into question the viability of the Anglican Communion as a united Christian body under the common foundation of faith. (See the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral)

The Church of Nigeria is not interested in territorial expansion. The failure to resolve these dual crises has been at the heart of the decision by our Church and a number of other Global South Provinces to offer encouragement and oversight to a growing number of clergy and congregations in the USA. These pastoral initiatives are not and should not be seen as the cause of the crises.

Although they have variously been described as “interventions” “boundary crossing” or “incursions”—they are a direct and natural consequence of the decision by The Episcopal Church (TEC) to follow the path that it has now chosen.

These pastoral initiatives undertaken to keep faithful Anglicans within our Anglican family has been at a considerable cost of crucial resources to our province. There is no moral equivalence between them and the actions taken by TEC. They are a heartfelt response to cries for help. We acted in accordance with the Gospel mandate. Had TEC, against all godly warnings, not taken actions that tore the fabric of our beloved Communion there would be no need for hundreds indeed, thousands of its members to seek pastoral, episcopal and now primatial care elsewhere.

It has been suggested that our actions violate historic Anglican polity and early church tradition with particular reference made to the Council of Nicea. This assertion is both hollow and made in bad faith since those who make it are more than willing to ignore historic biblical teaching on the uniqueness of Christ, the authority of the Scriptures and the call to moral obedience. With regard to Nicea - while there was concern for proper order there was even greater commitment to maintaining right teaching.  This can be seen by the provision of godly bishops and clergy in places where the incumbents were proponents of false teaching.

The world needs to understand that the situation that we now confront is not primarily about structure or conferences but about irreconcilable truth claims. It is worth remembering that in the Biblical narratives religious structures have often been the enemy of revealed truth. When these structures become obstacles, YHWH, in his own way and at a time of his own choosing removed them and brought His people back to Himself. Of course there is value to preserving Anglican structures but we must never do so at the expense of the people for whom our Lord Jesus the Christ gave his life.

Until the Communion summons the courage to tackle that issue headlong and resolve it we can do no other than provide for those who cry out to us. It is our earnest prayer that repentance and reconciliation will make this a temporary arrangement. One thing is clear we will not abandon our friends.

When we met in Dar es Salaam, after a great deal of effort, we suggested a way forward that had the support of all those present – including the Presiding Bishop of TEC. The House of Bishops and Executive Committee of The Episcopal Church quickly rejected this proposal on the grounds that it apparently violated their canons. We now have a counter proposal from TEC and yet there is no indication that it will meet the needs of those for whom it is supposedly designed. This endless series of proposals and counter proposals continues with no apparent conclusion in sight. Sadly, it is becoming increasingly clear that the only acceptable end as far as TEC is concerned is the full capitulation of any who would stand in opposition to their biblically incompatible innovations- this we will never do. There is a way forward - we have written and spoken repeatedly about it – the time for action is now.

I believe that we Primates must meet in the next few months to respond to the crisis that now confronts us. The situation in The Episcopal Church is deteriorating rapidly. Lawsuits are escalating and I have just heard that Bishop Bob Duncan is now threatened with ecclesiastical trial by the Presiding Bishop for his faithful attempts to find a way to protect his faithful members and diocese. Other godly bishops are under the same threat. Their only crime is a desire to continue their Christian pilgrimage as faithful Anglicans. This situation will affect all of us. We dare not let our love for the historic structures of our beloved Communion,  important as they are,  allow us to destroy its future.  We are losing members. We are losing time. We are losing our integrity as an important part of the One, holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.
“Multitudes, multitudes, in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision”. Joel 3:14

+Peter Abuja,
All Saints Day, 2007

73 Responses. Comments closed for this entry.

  1. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Yet another statement of ‘solidarity’ on the part of Global South Primates, who have rejected the recent findings of the Anglican Consultative Council - which is the truly representative body of the Church at this time!

    To believe that separation from the rest of the Anglican Communion is any sort of answer to our current situation, is to reject the parent body at the heart of the Communion. This attacks the traditional Instrument of Unity residing in the See of Canterbury (our Founding See) and the Lambeth Conference - which is called by the Archbishop of Canterbury for the purpose of collegial discussion and prayer for the Communion.

    To expect our ‘Primus inter pares’ and the rest of the Provinces of our world-wide Communion to defer to the request of the Global South for a delayed Lambeth Conference, is to project a crisis-mentality inappropriate to the situation, and to assume an importance out of proportion to the Global South’s stance on Anglican polity.

  2. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Blessed is Abp Peter Akinola for he is “Obeying” the Word of God!

  3. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Here is what Martin Luther stated up to his first Seven Thesis:

    “Out of love and concern for the truth, and with the object of eliciting it, the following heads will be the subject of a public discussion at Wittenberg under the presidency of the reverend father, Martin Luther, Augustinian, Master of Arts and Sacred Theology, and duly appointed Lecturer on these subjects in that place.  He requests that whoever cannot be present personally to debate the matter orally will do so in absence in writing.

    (Note that Luther acknowledges the authority of the Latin Church to appoint him.)

    1. When our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, said “Repent”, He called for the entire life of believers to be one of penitence.

    (This is exactly what TEC seems to have forgotten.)

    2. The word cannot be properly understood as referring to the sacrament of penance, i.e. confession and satisfaction, as administered by the clergy.

    (The Church has no magical power to dispell sin.)

    3. Yet its meaning is not restricted to penitence in one’s heart; for such penitence is null unless it produces outward signs in various mortifications of the flesh.

    (True repentance produces visible signs in the pentitent’s life.)

    4. As long as hatred of self abides (i.e. true inward penitence) the penalty of sin abides, viz., until we enter the kingdom of heaven.

    (There is an eschatalogical and final resolution to human sinfulness.)

    5. The Pope has neither the will nor the power to remit any penalties beyond those imposed either at his own discretion or by canon law.

    (The Gospel itself imposes limits to the powers that can be claimed by ecclessial authorities. TEC seems to have forgotten this also.)

    6. The Pope himself cannot remit guilt, but only declare and confirm that it has been remitted by God; or, at most, he can remit it in cases reserved to his discretion. Except for these cases, the guilt remains untouched.

    (Guilt is one of the products of unconfessed sin in our lives. Only the Holy Spirit can bring a soul to true repentance.)

    7. God never remits guilt to anyone without, at the same time, making humbly submissive to the priest, His representative.

    (God has established the priesthood as the means whereby Chrsitians may confess and receive assurance of forgiveness. TEC has many priests who have forgotten or reject that this is their central work.)

  4. Bruce Byron Says:

    Father Smith speaks of the old, failing order.  ECUSA now TEC has failed to uphold the old order or the true Gospel.  The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Anglican Consultative Counsel have clearly chosen a semblance of unity over upholding the traditional theology that has held us together as Anglicans.  Abp Akinola as Martin Luther before him writes boldly “that the truth of the gospel must always take precedence over the structures of the church”.

    I stand with them; I can do no other.

  5. Father Ron Smith Says:

    In this day and age, the Christian Church needs to be seen to accept further revelation from God about his ongoing creation. The Holy Spirit is still busy unfolding the great mystery of God’s ongoing work. The Church has not always been at the forefront of intelligent understanding of the creation. For instance, it once thought that the world was flat, and the Church had to be be open to be convinced that it was really spherical and actually part of a much larger cosmos than that envisaged in the writings of both Old and New Testaments of the Bible. Also, the two different creation stories of the Bible are given to show us that revelation is not static but ongoing.

    It was once thought that women were created after the male of the species - even though one of the creation ‘myths’ shows that God created male and female (together!) in God’s own image. The first thesis gave rise to the fact that women were thought to be subject to the male (perhaps not even made in God’s image) - an idea still perpetuated in some of the religious sects.

    Perhaps this may be a precept on which some Bishops of the Global South, and their supporters,
    find it hard to accept that the Primate of TEC is actually female - and someone of a spiritual and theological capability equal to most male bishops

    Also, slavery was thought to be part and parcel of God’s plan for the ordering of society. This is one reason why black people were once thought to be subservient - something that the Primates of CANA would now reject (quite rightly) out of hand.

    Similarly, scientific thought is moving towards the conclusion that at least 10 per cent of humanity is ordered differently in its sexual responses - one of the concepts with which the Global South is still having problems. This fact, and that of a basic inability on the part of some ‘religious’ people to relate to those who happen to have been heir to a specific set of genes, can only set the moral purists outside of the rest of a living and enlightened Church and society.

    The sooner our beloved Anglican Church throughout the world accepts that creation is as it is - because of God’s specific design (“Do not call what I have made, unclean”) the sooner we will be able get on with the other important aspects of bringing God’s great and redeeming love to bear on the problems facing today’s world.

    Religious Fundamentalism - from whatever source - which refuses to come to terms with the world as it is, can only be a threat to God’s world and the redemptive work of Christ within it. And the sooner we accommodate to the fact that God created all of his human children in the divine Image and Likeness, the sooner we can all get on with the vital business of loving God and loving our neighbour as ourselves - which is the basic Commandment, reiterated by none other than Christ himself. “God so loved the WORLD…” etc.

  6. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Paul’s understanding is that all Reality is hidden in Christ and has been revealed in His incarnation, death and resurrection. The central message of Paul’s writings deals with Jesus Christ as the fullness (“pleroma” in Greek) of all things in heaven and on earth, both invisible and visible. The term “pleroma” was used among the Gnostics to describe the metaphysical unity of all things, but Paul uses the term to speak about how all the fullness of the Godhead dwells in Christ in bodily form (Col. 2:9). This means that there is no further revelation, only the consummation at the end of time when Christ returns.

    The ancients didn’t believe that the world was flat. The physical evidence of anthropology doesn’t support our evolutionary notion of human progress. (If anything, we are devolving from Paradise!) There were sophisticated mining operations in the Lebombo Mountains of southern Africa 80,000 to 100,00 years ago. 10,000 years ago Africans in the Congo practiced brain surgery and made complex mathematical notations.

    You postulate that, “It was once thought that women were created after the male of the species - even though one of the creation ‘myths’ shows that God created male and female (together!) in God’s own image. The first thesis gave rise to the fact that women were thought to be subject to the male (perhaps not even made in God’s image) - an idea still perpetuated in some of the religious sects.”  This is nonsense! 

    In Genesis, Eve is named before Adam. We meet Adam by name for the first time in Genesis 4:25, but Eve is named in Genesis 3:20. Paul teaches Timothy that the man was made before the woman and that this is God’s design. He insists that the churches reflect that divine order because Paul trusts that God’s design is universally good.

    The biblical worldview is a binary view of Reality. This means binary distinctions such as night-day, cold-hot, male-female, sun-moon, heaven-earth, nonhumans-humans, are established by God and fixed. This is why the Darwinian theory of evolution is not a biblical view, and why homosexual acts are regarded as “abomination”. Paul’s writings are based on this binary assumption, so he calls “unrighteousness” or “lawlessness” whatever man does that is not in accord with how God has ordered Reality.

    You also need to do some research on how the Afro-Asiatic peoples (including the earliest Vedic texts) understood slavery.

    Please don’t lift scripture out of context! The message given to Saint Peter was to prepare him for his visit to the home of a Gentile where he would eat. This verse has nothing to do with homosexual acts, which God’s word through the Apostles declares to be unholy.

    You speak about refusing to accept “the world as it is” but you appear to understand very little about the world as it is. Perhaps you should read what the Hindus have to say about “maya” which means illusion.

  7. Bruce Byron Says:

    Alice - I bow before your wisdom and understanding.  Thanks for coming to my rescue.  My response was a clearly inferior intellectual plane.  I was merely going to inquire of Fr. Ron that if we could agree on one thing it might be God’s all encompassing love.  The question to Ron would be if God is loving why would he bless such clearly unnatural and destructive act such as male homosexual intercourse?

  8. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Alice, you’re back. I suppose having once thought that women were legitimate candidates for the priesthood, and then having been de-licenced by your bishop and having your mind changed for you, you would naturally have an ambivalence about the validity of women’s ordination. Is it possible, though, that your personal view on this issue has been coloured by your own situation?

    Your supposition that the creation has ceased to be an ongoing reality is distinctly at odds with modern scientific observation. But then I don’t suppose that is too surprising given your patent inability to accept the evidence of evolutionary progression. You cannot convince me with your protestations of academic gobbledy-gook. There are plenty of good women theologians who would be able to challenge your theories - some of them even priests and bishops in the Church - The Right Reverend Katherine Schori, for one. 

    Bruce (above), if he re-reads any of my postings, will discover that I have never either spoken of, or commended, homosexual intercourse. If it were that activity only that the Global South Primates and their followers objected to, then perhaps I could better understand them. However, what I am specifically questioning is their blatant discrimination against those who have inherited a given sexual nature which happens to be different from that of the majority. How they use their sexuality is as important for them, as is the way heterosexuals use theirs. My question here is, why do most critics of homosexuals jump to the conclusion that they are all sodomites and pederasts?

  9. Bruce Byron Says:

    Ron - Nice personal attack on Alice.  It reflects a lot of class.  And yes, you talk all around the homosexual issue if you only read your own writing.  If the only relations people with homosexual attractions had were asexual then there would not be a problem.  The problem is that they aren’t. 

    I have no problems with men or women cohabitating with bonds of love and affection but without sexual intimacy.  I’ve even done that myself.  But to try to equate a homosexual relationship with heterosexual relationship doesn’t make sense on any number of levels - biological, social and communal. 

    Listen, we aren’t going to agree on these things. I’m willing to let you have your opinion.  Let me have mine.  But people like Kathy Schori want everyone to agree with their revisionist ideas or leave their property behind or get sued. Well, guess what? You guys win.  You can have my church ECUSA or TEC whatever you call it. I will worship with people who aren’t trying to make a God in their own image. 

    So go ahead talk down to poor ignorant Africans and women who don’t’ agree with you. I will have their company any day and learn from it.  Believe what you like; we will let God sort it out.

  10. Ralph W. Davis Says:

    My question to Father Ron is on what biblical basis would he condemn bestiality?

    The reason I ask that is that the standard arguments given by apologists for homosexual-orientation-as-a-creation-of-God claim that since Jesus didn’t condemn homosexual acts, and “only” Paul mentions it in passing (and then interpreted as exploitive sodomy, not “faithful, loving monogamous” sodomist relationships…), then the door is open for the Holy Spirit to bless what was so clearly considered the opposite of holy through-out the history of the people of God.  [This also ignores the deleterious effect of the Fall…affecting humankind spiritually and even physically, by bringing death itself.  (Personally I seem to have an orientation toward polygamy…shall I blame that on God and go marry 4 women?)]

    Well, a better argument can be made to support bestiality.  It’s never once condemned or even mentioned in the New Testament, and only once, as far as I know, mentioned in the Old Testment—in the Levitical holiness code, that passage so breezily dismissed today for the sake of those practicing or celebrating perversion.  If we understand as Christians have for many centuries, and as ++Akinola does today, that the Moral Law of God, found in the Old Testament, remains—and Jesus upheld it…while fulfilling it… then it doesn’t take a (insert pejorative sense here) “fundamentalist” to know that God’s plan for sexuality given in Eden, remains so to this day:  One man for one woman for life. 

    This whole discussion makes entirely clear the religion of TEC’s leadership and that of the historic Episcopalian/Anglican faith are without question two different things.

  11. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    RE: Post #8. “Your supposition that the creation has ceased to be an ongoing reality is distinctly at odds with modern scientific observation. But then I don’t suppose that is too surprising given your patent inability to accept the evidence of evolutionary progression.”

    Father Ron Guido also accepts Darwinism.

  12. Bishoptomas Says:

    I thank God for the leadership that the GS bishops are giving in the Church.

    Bp +Tomás Kennedy

  13. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Bishop Kennedy, I join you in giving thanks for these fearless apostles!

    Fr. Ron, I never left, only remained silent because I had nothing to add that was edifying.

    It isn’t me that you are angry with for opposing your views. You are angry with God because He has set the terms for salvation and you don’t like His terms.

    As for being dishonored, I deserve to be dishonored. I am a sinner. If I have any goodness, any grace, any wisdom, it is because God has granted it to me, though I am unworthy.

    I am unworthy even to be in the presence of such great Apostles as these Global South leaders.  Yet God granted me the opportunity to serve Archbishop Kolini on October 7, 2003 in Dallas, Texas. I remember the day because it was my birthday and God granted me a gift in allowing me to bring a glass of water to Archbishop Kolini when he was thirsty. God also granted me the honor of kissing the hands of Archbishop Orombi this past month here in Kentucky. So while I am unworthy of any honor, God has chosen to honor me.

    I count it an honor to have been inhibited by Bishop Stacy Sauls. He too is angry at God’s terms. He pressured me to renounce Episcopal Church orders, but I refused to do so until God directed me. Bishop Sauls thought that I was being insubordinate when I asked him to repent and return to the Truth. (God’s Word is truth!) One day I fear that God will judge him rather harshly for he has caused so much suffering among God’s people here in the USA. I prayed for him daily until about 6 months ago, when the Lord released me from that burden.

  14. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Dear Alice, I would love to have the direct line to God that you appear to have (in your last paragraph). However, I do have the guidance of God’s life-giving Holy Spirit, who does warn me against accepting testimony which compromises the truth and justice of the Gospel of Christ.

    In this matter, only today I read in the English Church Times that a Bishop of the Global South - the discredited Bishop Kunonga, formerly of the Harae Diocese, (a personal friend and advocate of the dictator Rogbert Mugabe) - has just used his political alliance with Mugabe to ensure the invalidation of a legal appeal by the Province of Central Africa, against his appropriation to himself of the resources of the Harare Diocese. (Bp. Kunonga actually has taken up residence in a farm illegally appropriated from its former owners by Robert Mugabe).

    His appeal to Archbishop Nzimbi of the Province of Kenya for alternative oversight (on the grounds of his opposition to homosexuality) has been met with a ‘message of solidarity’ from Kenya. Does this mean that Archbishop Nzimbi approves of the discredited Bishop Kunonga’s misappropriation of Harare Diocesan resources?

    If this is the case, I cannot see the validity of the Global South’s protest against the (legal) retention of parochial and diocesan resources by the (legally- appointed) TEC authorities.

  15. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    “Father Ron… also accepts Darwinism.”  Apparently he does so uncritically. To go there would take this thread off topic, but I must ask: “Ron, where is the physical evidence that humans evolved from apes?” After 85+ years of ardent searching, none has been found. In fact, the physical evidence points to humans appearing suddenly and unheralded, and the level of social organization and industry is sophisticated from the beginning.

    However, I was not speaking of creation, but directed my remarks about progressive revelation. This is not the Christian view of revelation.

  16. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Alice, do you really suppose that God has finished the task of revelation through the life-giving Holy Spirit?

  17. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Fr. Ron, You seem to be confused about the Trinity. Read Athanasius’ Creed.

    If you are still confused, read St. Basil’s Treatise On the Holy Spirit. In his treatise, St. Basil writes, “Every man is a theologian; it does not matter that his soul is covered with more blemishes than can be counted. The result is that these innovators find an abundance of men to join their factions. So ambitious, self-elected men divide the government of the churches among themselves, and reject the authority of the Holy Spirit. The ordinances of the Gospel have been thrown into confusion everywhere for lack of discipline; the jostling for high positions is incredible, as every ambitious man tries to thrust himself into high office. The result of this lust for power is that wild anarchy prevails among the people; the exhortations of those in authority are rendered utterly void and unprofitable, since every man in his arrogant delusion thinks that it is more his business to give orders to others than to obey anyone himself.”

  18. R Sorfleet Says:

    I am amazed at times with the current debate on dealing s/s issues in the Church and wonder where the frenzied exchanges were, the heat and the storms for these people the last time the ‘fabric’ was ‘torn’ over the Prayer Book and the Ordination of women 1, 2 & 3 and people left. Perhaps as one liberal put it when asked about sheep- we just go and get new ones…
    There seems so little concern over the 2 decades of damage, upset and endless change with all the focus on s/s and gay clergy issues now. Nothing happened until now??
    At the grass-roots level it has not been so much the changes but rather how the changes have been implemented or imposed- the heavy boxes being lugged to the side walk for the weekly trash collection and when questioned finding out they were the Prayer Books [we don’t use those old books anymore] -a people’s faith carted off in the garbage. Or the dare-me’ism of ordaining women and then dumping them in out-of-way corners until calmer times returned because giving might be affected in the more populous key parishes.
    The same is now occurring with s/s civil unions being treated as marriages where even before synod debates those on the pro- side pronouncing that regardless of any vote or decsion, they would proceed. We have theology set by shows of hands of 50% +1 and in your face regardless.
    I suppose we have to be thankfull we do not have the penalties of Acts of Uniformity with fines and jail-time now for those who object.
    Equally amazing is the hysteria from those opposed who are trying to link the fall of Africa to Islam if gay unions are accepted across the board and playing on two red-button issues in the West -dealing with the grow of Islam and homosexuality both of which are more inclined to elicit emotional rather than theological responses.
    The fabric was ripped up 25 years ago and now we faced with just another group drawing their own line in the sand.
    As long as the loot keeps coming in to finance the mess, the establishment will carry on in the afe knowledge that most people are attached to the buildings and for our older generation fear of being ignored and in the end unburied.
    How clever… wicked.

  19. Father Ron Smith Says:

    “So ambitious, self-elected men divide the government of the churches among themselves, and reject the authority of the Holy Spirit. The ordinances of the Gospel have been thrown into confusion everywhere for lack of discipline; the jostling for high positions is incredible, as every ambitious man tries to thrust himself into high office. The result of this lust for power is that wild anarchy prevails among the people; the exhortations of those in authority are rendered utterly void and unprofitable, since every man in his arrogant delusion thinks that it is more his business to give orders to others than to obey anyone himself.”

    Posted by Alice C. Linsley on 11/11 at 11:44 AM

    This quotation, purporting to be from ‘Saint Basil’s Treatise on the Holy Spirit’ used by Alice Lindsay to support her argument on behalf of the Global South Primates, speaks volumes about the recent activity of the very Primates she wants to champion.

    Their naivety in accepting the invitation of Communist China to visit the state-controlled Christian Church in that country is evidence of the G.S. Primates’ latest ‘Pony Show’ to attract attention to their self-proclaimed authority to represent the world-wide Anglican Communion. How hubristic is that?

    Also, Archbishop Akinola’s so obvious threats issued to the Archbishop of Canterbury and his fellow Primates, that if Lambeth is not cancelled or postponed, +Akiinola will withdraw his troops and fellow-travellers from the Gospel Mission of the Anglican Church. Is that not a sign of the very same ‘lust for power’ mentioned by St. Basil?

    Come on Alice, you know better than that. You will have to dig much deeper into your favorite Arthur Mee’s Encyclopaedia to find more credible support for your idols than this. Kissing the hand of G.S. Archbishops does not necessarily show that your loyalty to Christ is any more viable than that of the innumerable underground true witnesses to Christ in China who have had to keep silent on their attitude towards the visiting prelates.

    However, I do whole-ehartedly agree with Saint Basil; the lust for so-called holy preferment is a thing most distasteful to both God and man.

  20. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Fr. Ron, I thought you’d read the passage from St. Basil in reference to Bishop Kunonga’s Kenya connection, but that doesn’t work. Read the passage again. St. Basil is speaking about the cause and effect of innovation in the Church, not politics. If we have an analogous situation in Anglicanism, it is because of TEC’s innovations.

  21. Suzanne T Says:

    Good for you Alice!

    You are a clever girl with a thirst for biblical truth, although I always have trouble with the kissing thing I suppose you did leave yourself wide open for the “idol” comment, unless of course you were greeting each other with a “holy kiss”!

    Have you noticed how hostile folk become when confronted with the truth?  Is that not what the bible says also? They will hate you “because you speak the truth”!

    Looking forward to the resurrection and the life of the world to come. Deo Volente!

  22. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Very good, Suzanne, but I think God wants his chidren to be active in the presentation of the gospel - the Good News of redemption through his well-beloved Son, Jesus Christ in this life, before we can hope to enter the eschaton.

    God’s Truth is eternal, but sadly, when Jesus faced Pilate with his ultimate truth, Pilate had to ask “What is truth?” Indeed, Alice - who seems to have a hot-line to God - has been promulgating her idea of truth, as have I. But what is yours?

  23. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Ron Smith says:  Just about anything that he seems to think will muster the troops and get everything boiling…that is his only purpose.  He is not seeking Truth, He is not interested in protecting the Holy Bible and he is definitely pushing the Shorri Agenda of make war with law suits and threats.

    Byron, Alice, Gary, R. Sorfleet, +BishopTomas,
    Alice Linsley, Ralph Davis, Martin Luther and ArchBishop Akinola ALL are much more educated and well spoken than I. 

    Ron would tell you that I claim to NOT be a sinner, but that would just be another one of his lies. 

    All of these highly educated, well spoken persons above are of one mind and going in one direction. Ron Smith will never agree with any of them or myself.  He supports Schorri and TEC and therefore supports the work of the enemy.  No need to say anything further.

  24. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Question: “What is truth?”
    Answer: Jesus Christ our Redeemer!

    He came, singing LOVE,
    And He lived, singing LOVE,
    He died, singing LOVE,

    He arose in SILENCE.
    For the LOVE to go on,
    We must make it our song -
    You and I, BE THE SINGERS!

    Blessed are the Peace-makers
    for they shall see God. Alleluia!

  25. Fr Mark Says:

    Well said, Fr Ron: thank goodness someone’s speaking up for reason here. As for the accusation that you must be wrong because you even believe in Darwinism, it shows what we are up against in terms of sheer backwardness in the Church. I suppose you neo-cons still think the world is flat? Or have just come round on that one?

  26. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Post #24…

    Question: “What is truth?”
    Answer: The Word, Laws, and Commandments of God.

    Blessed are the Peace-makers,
    but what about the Pervert-makers, and Pervert-supporters-Smith?

    Post #25…

    I think this will cover it.

    “In Sydney, you should be thinking “how do we affirm, support and attract gay people into our Christian churches?” Posted by Fr Mark on 10/08 at 10:11 PM

    Mark wants to affirm, support, and attract gay people into God’s houses of worship.

    He says nothing about pastoral care in helping the sinful(vile affections) to repent from sinning against God.

    I want you two pervert-supporters to get a dictionary and look up the words large intestine, and give me the definition back on this web site, and tell me what God created the large intestine for? Is the definition for bodily waste removal or for sexual pleasure?

    One of your choices will be a norman and natural use. The other will be a perverted, abnormal use.

    Which one of you have the guts, and fortitude to answer this question?

    You see laws or a majority of Elitist thinkers cannot change the natural order of God. Abnormal cannot be made normal by decree.

  27. R Sorfleet Says:

    re posting 23.
    It has nothing to do with educated or articulate and I must admit to typos in my last comment.
    What needs to be heard is more for the grass roots and the effect of what has been taking place in the last 25 years on and in the lives of ordinary church-goers. We are asked to foot the bill and just take whatever comes.
    The s/s union controversy and the upheaval this has been causing is, in my opinion, the biggest ecclesiastical upset since Elizabeth I’s commissioners rolled into town to finish off the Marian Church.
    Comments from the episcopate on making a decision tomorrow or ‘10 yrs from now’ and then firmly sitting on both sides of the fence waiting for a change in the wind or attention to be shifted onto some other great cause is the real issue now. I would much rather deal with people who have made up their minds [whether I agree with them or not]than with those whose idea of the via media is neither in the middle and just plain devious.

  28. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    R. Sorfleet says:
    “re posting 23.
    It has nothing to do with educated or articulate and I must admit to typos in my last comment.”

    Nothing meant towards typos.  What I was saying I guess is that although I am only a high school graduate, I have enough brains as do the little children to figure out that when the Scripture says “All scripture is for teaching, correcting, etc.” that it means it.  How can Ron & Mark who are espousing Darwinisam, same sex blessings and goodness knows what else possibly be correct?

    Smith wishes he had the direct line to God that Alice Linsley has.  Well, Ron, when that happens, you will learn to run from where you are to where she is, because only then, when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, will you and Mark understand or at least start to understand the total truth.

    I think Gary Morrow has asked the two of you to have courage enough to answer a simple question….which one of you has the courage?  I suggest that another smokescreen should appear soon.

    All I can say is May God continue to raise up wonderful and strong men like +++Peter Akinola, ++Mouneer Anis, +++Peter Jensen and all the Saints that are doing His work on this earth.  May those like Alice Linsley, Gary Morrow and all the others taking part on this blog continue to battle against Ron and Mark.


  29. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    I forgot…..
    May Bishop Bob Duncan of Diocese of Pittsburgh continue to stand against the Presiding Bishop of TEC. 

    May Bishop Don Harvey of Canada continue to lead the way for Scripture believing Christians in Canada.

    May the Bishops in Europe and England who are fighting against the wayward in those areas continue to move forward.

    God Bless all these people and protect them and all Believers as we continue to be persecuted by the ones who think they are right in promoting same sex blessings, Darwinianism, etc.

  30. Joe Smith Says:

    Oh my goodness.  I’ve heard about this dialog, and
    about the rude exchanges.  But, I’m surprised that a
    priest is so visceral, so verbose.  You’d think he’d have something else to do; you know, prepare a sermon, work with laymen on ways to spread the Gospel, visit prisoners, comfort the sick and broken hearted, maybe even evangelize, or at least dust something.  If nothing else, he could be a man of peace.  But nooooo, its either poisonous insults, or something about singing God’s love.  Talk about inconcruent. (#24)k.  Unless the good collar is reading a different Bible than mine, Jesus was a stickler for truth - it wasn’t all goodness and light.  Remember this exchange? “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside, but on the inside is full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean.” Matthew 23:27 Did he condemn the sinner?  No, He came to bring salvation to the sinner. He condemned the false guides.  He called the sinner to change his ways.  Jesus is not a sentimentalist.  He did not accommodate the law to the sinner, nor because He loved them, did he change the rules (not one iota) so they’d feel good about themselves.  I think that is what the misguided do when they talk about accepting all of God’s children into the fold.  God does not change; that is, evolve.  He is the rock, we vacillate.  We are called to be salt and light to a hurting and corrupt world.  And highly related, we are called to be in the world, but not part of it.  Like Moses, we are to hold high God’s standard, not our own.  Grace does prevail, but what good father would call His children to destruction?  Now that’s grace! 

    Maybe it would be useful if we were to address who we are.  If we are a quasi-secular group searching for acceptance and civic harmony, then say so.  Maybe even join with the Unitarians.  And for those who want to reject “creative Christianity,” break off and forget about your property.  God will provide.  Run either hot or cold, for if we don’t choose then God will surely spew us from his mouth.  Mediocrity won’t cut it.  But hey, who am I to advise, just a lowly layman.

    God bless and protect us,  Joe

  31. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Perhaps you could have added the following Scripture to your note.  Thank you for recognizing the “collar” for what he is.

    1 John 2:4 says, “The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commendments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”

  32. R Sorfleet Says:

    What we need to be prepared for the next change coming after s/s unions in the Church and that has already started in several TEC parishes in the US, bringing your dogs up for communion.
    Barking mad but it has already touched off a storm. After all dogs are people according to many and considered part of the North American family unit, so why should they be denied?

  33. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Joe Smith, remember I encouraged to let these so-called collars to talk all they wanted—we need to understand what is taking place within all denominations, and through their communications do we get the whole picture, for example, birds of a feather flock together.

    The flocking of The Rev. Ron Smith and The Rev. Robert Semes:

    “Thank you, Mr. Editor, for posting the letter of Bishop John Spong on your web-site. Bp. John is, I fear, articulating his own view of how the renegade Bishops of the Global South were able to take advantage of ++Canterbury’s unwillingness to pre-empt whatever the world’s Anglican Bishops at Lambeth 2008 may, or ay not, decide to do about the presence of Gays in the Church.” Posted by Father Ron Smith on 09/07 at 02:56 PM

    “Thank you, for posting the letter of Bishop John Spong…”

    “I have no quarrel with Jack Spong. He is probably one of the sanest people in the crumbling Anglican empire(The Rev. Robert Semes).”

    The good Rev. Semes bestowed some of his unique pastoral gifts on David Usher, who used the foul email as an opportunity to… well, to nail the m.o.(method of operation) of gay Episcopal activists:

    “These words exemplify the methodology of same-sex marriage advocates when they noisily invade churches:
    “They call everyone who does not agree with them horrendous names, such as “patriarchal,” “gay hater,” “woman hater,” or “bigot.” In the feminist tradition, they are “in your face” and all over you. Most nice churchgoers do not know how to handle these hardball political street tactics within the realm of church decorum. To keep the peace, they sit by meekly while radicals take their church over one board seat at a time, and finally appoint a revisionist Minister or Reverend feminist-advocateThe Rev. Robert Semes).”

    So, are you gong to sit back and be weak, not meek, and be bullied into submission and give up your Churches?

    God bless Global South for being meek(not collapsing under pressure) and not weak(collapsing under pressure).

    Ron Smith and Mark keep writing.

  34. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Wow…..what a statement by Semes!!

    “I have no quarrel with Jack Spong. He is probably one of the sanest people in the crumbling Anglican empire(The Rev. Robert Semes).”

    Spong (former Bishop of Newark?) a self confessed homosexual and a big wig in a worldwide organization that claims to be Christian Based yet teaches under threats of curses and oaths…Spong, one of the sanest people in the crumbling Anglican empire….wrong….likely the opposite including it should read TEC not anglican empire. 

    I believe the Anglican Church worldwide will come out of all this a cleansed church and be rid of the pestilence that has inhabited much of it in North America and Europe.

    Thank God for +++Gregory Venables, +++Peter Akinola, +++Peter Jensen and all of the Saints that work with them throughout the Anglican Church worldwide.

  35. Joe Smith Says:

    Well I guess I was picking on the “collar.”  It certainly was not my intention to squash dialog.  Arrogance is my pet peeve. “The Church” is a large body made up of diverse folk, yet collars seem to push and pull us at will.  On one hand they say the church is the hands and feet of Christ.  The next moment they’re telling us to shut up and sit down.  The result is that the body is walking.  Just look at our membership trends in the USA the last few decades – millions have walked.  Of note is the number of large and growing congregations which follow and teach the precepts of Christ; i.e., the Bible.  Could it be that revisionist creative collars will be preaching to empty pews as they hold out their hands for support from the faithful congregations?  The 4,000-member church that I worship with has given millions to foreign and domestic missions, but to my knowledge we haven’t given a penny to the national church in years.  I don’t think this is so much vindictiveness as an answer to the call to be salt and light.  It’s just to support the national church would be contradictory to our call.  If we are called to build the Kingdom (Matt. 28), how can we be successful if we reject God’s word?  Yeah, yeah, I know - there are two creation stories, and at a different time within a different culture the Bible gave advice to slaves.  Rejecting the Bible because the “national” church at one time felt that the world was flat is equally silly.  Obviously there is a battle raging.  (For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Ephesians 6:12)

    Again, dialog is great, and compromise is the backbone of politics.  However, there seems to be some blank and white decisions to be made.  It reminds me of the old saw, “You’re either with us, or against us.”  You’re either a Christian (follower of Christ), or you’re not. 

    God bless, Joe

  36. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Baptist learn a lesson from outside looking in—Baptist Convention Expels North Carolina Church for Welcoming Gays:

  37. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Re:  #36 above…..Hey folks, all should go to the site Gary leaves the URL for and read the blogs under the main item.

    Well worth the time and the read….a couple of the blog comments are bang on and one deals with the gay communities famous “homophobic” accusatory words which are aimed at orthodox believers. 

    Thanks Gary…a good one.

  38. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    The Church of England’s Feminization of the Ministry:

    Archbishop of Canterbury has his hand in the ordination of females and homosexuals-feminization of God’s Churches.

    1 Timothy 3
    2 He setteth out Bishops, 8 and Christian deacons with their wives, 12 children and family, 15 he calleth the Church the house of God.
    1 This is a true saying, If any “”“man”“” desire the office of a Bishop, “”“he”“” desireth a worthy work.
    2 A Bishop therefore must be unreproveable, the “”“husband”“” of one wife, watching, sober, modest, harberous, apt to teach,
    3 Not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre, but gentle, no fighter, not covetous,
    4 One that can rule “”“his”“” own house honestly, having children under obedience with all honesty.
    5 For if any cannot rule “”“his”“” own house, how shall “”“he”“” care for the Church of God?

    Now you understand why there is the neutral gender Bible-so women can preach.

    There were no priestesses—all of Apostle Pauls’s offices are of masculine positions—Apostles, Prophets, Bishops.

  39. Father Ron Smith Says:

    “All baptised in Christ you have all clothed yourselves in Christ, and there are no more distinctions between Jew and Greek, MALE and FEMALE, but all of you are ONE in Christ Jesus”
    (Paul’s Letter to the Galatians, 3:27-28)

    The first Spirit-filled Christian was a WOMAN - Our Lady, Mary, the Mother of Christ.

    Why do some of you people hate women so much?

  40. Suzanne T Says:

    Oh shame, Fr Ron, please don’t quote these things unless you are keeping them in context, Pauls letter to the Galations in this passage is talking about Jusification by faith! Because certain men were trying to get the Galations to get circumsised and of course they did not need to be because circumcision was only ever for the Jews.  When Jesus came he put an end to all that as he made a new covenant for both Jew and Greek and Pauls ministry was largely to spread the Gospel to the Gentile population.  Paul was upset because he knew that if they were to try and go back to the Mosiac law, then they would be denying the cross and therefore trampling the blood of Christ underfoot.
    Also, you asked what is truth well clearly it is the Word of God as Paul says in his second letter to Timothy CH3 v16
    I am a woman but I also know that in the created order woman is a help meet, it has nothing whatsoever to do with masogany (if that is how you spell it! It means the hatred of women! Paul is often accused of it too.) Also, the bible clearly lays down an authoritative order in various places but in the new testament clearly when talking about head coverings, relating straight back to the created order! One Corinthians 11 whole chapter but paying attention to v7 onwards!
    I for one have no intention of undermining God’s created order, I Just wouldn’t dare!

    In Christ

  41. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Good question, Fr. Ron. Why do people hate? Hatred is the antithesis to what our Lord Jesus Christ taught us and what He showed us through His blood.

    Faith, a gift of the Holy Spirit, help Believers to trust that God’s order in creation is for the universal good. This is why Saint Paul insisted that the order of creation be reflected in the churches. The Messiah’s coming doesn’t overthrow order in creaton, it restores all of creation to the unity and perfection that was, and is, and shall be in Christ Jesus.

  42. Suzanne T Says:

    That was very well said Alice

  43. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    The prestigious Royal College of Psychiatrists (Secular Humanist) tries to bamboozle the Church, “Gay versus post-gay: which to believe?”, but a Christian Warrior places a dagger right in the middle of their perverted movement, “The Homosexual Lifestyle From A Christian Medical Perspective”(Dr. Linda Stalley).

  44. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Why is Gary (and others from the Global South) so frightened of scientific discovery? It is still God’s world - ordered as God wanted and wants it to be.

    “Do not call anything I have made ‘unclean’”
    This doesn’t just mean food, it means the whole of life - as God has given it.

    Sexuality is a gift to all - in whatever way God has chosen to give it. This is what the British Society of Psychiatrists is saying. Don’t try to gainsay what scientific observation is telling us. What we DO with our sexuality is, indeed, a profoundly moral question - for heterosexuals as well as gays.

  45. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    #44 above ~ Why is Gary (and others from the Global South) so frightened of scientific discovery? It is still God’s world - ordered as God wanted and wants it to be.  Ron Smith

    Question Ron:  Why are the revisionists of today so afraid of the Scriptures, Old and New Testaments?  Why do you (as Suzanne T says) write things “out of Context”? 

    Why do the people in TEC (In authority) such as the Presiding Bishop think it is all right for an Episcopalian Priest to also be a practicing Muslim?  Why is it all right for Priests who are supposed to be “clean” to practice immorality?  Why?  There are no written Scriptures that make room for such behavior.  WHY?

  46. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    OH Yes, Ron…

    Just to clarify for now, I don’t believe Gary is from Global South at this time (I may be corrected if he is in a Church or Diocese that has correctly chosen to come under Primatial Oversight because of the actions of TEC). 

    I know that right now I am not under Primatial oversight from Global South or Southern Cone, but prayerfully it will not be long before I am.  I cannot speak for others on this blog, but, I think you should be sure of what you speak before you write it out.

  47. Suzanne T Says:

    I would have to disagree with you Fr. Ron Smith because the bible states crystal clearly in both old and new testaments that homosexual and sexually immoral behaviour are sinful, He did not destroy sodom and gomorrah for nothing, it was because not even five people were worthy of being saved, the two angels were about to be sodomised by the unruly and randy crowd, so God raised the place to the ground! Then in the NT you have Paul listing those things that are repulsive to God : Rom 1 v18 onwards looking closely at v24 onwards “therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonour their bodies amoung themselves, who exchanged the truth for the lie and worshipped the creature rather than the creator who is blessed forever Amen.(man rather than God)
    For this reason, God gave them up to vile passions.  For even their women exchanged ....(please go to Romans and read it for yourself) If you also read II Timothy 3v16 you cannot be mistaken.  I know one gay lady but I do not hate her, she knows that I am very concerned for her spiritual wellbeing and I hope that she changes her mind so that she will come to no harm at the resurrection.

    Please don’t shoot the messenger!!!!!

  48. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Suzanne, it is interesting that you should use the word “messenger” which is “apostolos”.  Christ’s messengers cannot expect better treatment or more honor than He who sends us. Further, on the Last Day we will be responsible for whether or not we faithfully and truly represented the Holy One who sent us. I trust that your concern for your friends and family is really Christ’s concern for them. God bless you!

  49. Suzanne T Says:

    Hi Alice

    Thank you for your concern as to my motives.

    Maybe you misunderstood my meaning when I said I know a gay lady, she is an aquaintance, a daughter of an old work colleague, neither myself or any of my family are homosexuals in fact the thought is totally abhorrant to me and my children.

    However, I do feel that we should not write off anyone by our own wisdom because that is Gods perogative and of course “who has known the mind of God?”, God will always do the right thing, whether we understand his motives or not.  But by the same token we should not associate with habitual sinners who blatantly don’t care about offending God, because we have been told that a little leaven leavens the whole lump.  What we can do however, is to pray for wisdom and for the Holy spirit to guide us in the right direction, whether that be to dissasociate ourselves or keep presenting them with the Gospel.

    I know that I am a pitiful sinner and I sin on a regular basis whether it be in thought or the things I say or do.  But I do know that Christ died for people like me and that his son is ruling as we speak, at the right hand of the father, so I thank God every day for his grace and ask his continual blessing on us to keep us as faithful servants in Christ.

    God bless you too Alice:)

  50. Suzanne T Says:


    Sorry Alice, I just noticed the lack of a question mark on your last entry, my response was geared up to that comment being a question, and on re-reading my last entry I reaslised that it may be taken in a way other than the one I intended, so I thought I should clarify the situation.
    Of course it is with Christ’s concern that we persevere with anyone who we beleive to be going astray, and I don’t just mean homosexuals I mean any kind of sin from the smallest to the largest. I still don’t hate gays and I will always do my best to protect them spiritually, but that does not mean that I approve of their actions. 

    If anyone saw a small child putting about to fall into a fire, instinctively you would jump up and rescue that child because you don’t want to see him get hurt. The difference is that in this political climate we are allowed to protect our children by advising them but not the grown ups.

    In Christ

  51. Suzanne Says:

    comment; “I trust that your concern for your friends and family is really Christ’s concern for them”?

    red face

    I find it amazing how one little mark can make such a difference to the meaning of a sentence.  Those translators from the hebrew really had their work cut out as there was no punctuation etc. in hebrew!  they had to rely soley on the context of the passage and the historical evidence laid before them.  Take for example John 3v16 “For God so loved the world that…...” “so” meaning “thus, for this reason or in this way” is very interesting, the word “so” is not an intensifier and therefore changes the whole meaning of the entire text!
    And this text in particular has caused many to fall out with each other because the implications of this are enormous.

    A challenge for those who like such things would be to read All of John chapter 3 in both of these contexts and then to pray that the Lord will open all our hearts to true biblical truth. Amen

  52. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Perhaps Archbishop Akinola and all the other leaders of the Global South Church should be granted access to the latest presentation of the Royal College of Psyciatrists in the UK, to the Church of England Listening Group - prepared and edited by Professor Michael King.
    (31 October 2007)

    This could lead to some much-needed enlightenment on the scientific realities of human sexuality.
    The Society’s finding that so-called restorative therapies, aimed at changing basic sexual orientation, have failed and that, although sexual behaviour is a matter of personal choice, this is not true of sexual orientation, which is a biological given.

    Bishop Desmond Tutu, a long-time worker for peace and justice in the Church is presently urging the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, to consider the dangers inherent in trying to preserve the Unity of the Anglican Church at the expense of Truth and Justice. To place the issues of human sexuality before more pressing needs, is to say that the pursuit of religious purity is more important than the emancipation of our God-given pursuit of justice and fullness of life.

    “I came that you might have life, life in all its fullness” - the Word of God.

  53. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    Fr. Ron, The Royal College of Psychiatrists, The American Psychiatrist Association, the Kinsey Report (and anything else you cite as an authority) don’t trump God’s original design.  Because someone has same sex affection doesn’t mean that God intended for that individual to have sexual relations with someone of their sex. Many of the phenomena that are attributed to God are actually the disordered effects of the Fall. The Good News is that the Blood of Jesus restores all things to God!

  54. Amoxicillin Online Buy Says:

    Just passing by, tripped over your site really. Still, looks nice.

  55. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:


    Well stated….we should be used to Smith’s constant barrage of “scientific” support for his and other liberal’s cause.

    Not today, not tomorrow and unless God work’s a miracle in the minds of the “enlightened and more knowledgeable” will Smith ever understand that which is so simple that little children can grasp it.

  56. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Sadly, Alice, you still seem to be in your theological Wonderland of the Stone Age.

    You seem, on the one hand, to tout your own brand of theological expertise and, dare I say it, esoteric ‘learning’, and yet you discount the revelations of the scientific world.
    (scientia - knowledge).

    Do you think that God only ordained simpletons and disaffected clergy to preach the true Gospel, or will you accept that there is always another - perhaps more truly authentic - point of view?

    Your ideas of God seem to have be trapped in the pages of the Book. Perhaps the incarnational understanding of God in Christ has escaped you - educated as you undoubtedly are. But what about Truth? Must that be a casualty in your war of words? Wake up Alice, The world may just have passed you by

    I do urge you Alice, to extend your theological education and really get into some enlightened exegesis of your (and my) favourite book, the Bible. I would recommend the disciplined study of the life of Christ, The Liberator,in the New Testament.
    (P.S. Do try the ‘New Jerusalem’ version)

  57. Alice C. Linsley Says:

    The New Jerusalem Bible is my primary study Bible.

  58. Suzanne T Says:

    Tut tut father Ron, you are at it again, you are just not very friendly are you?

    Alice has many good points to make but one I would disagree with both of you on!  God handed people over to sexual imorality please read Romans again or refer to my previous posts number 47 it is all there in the new king james version. which is I believe closest to the original texts.

    God decides what to do with all of us we are freed from responsibility meaning that we do not decide who gets saved and who does not, we do our job as obedient servants of Christ and he does as he wills.  If you think about it carefully you will realise that many times people come to the knowledge and love of Christ many years after hearing the gospel preached to them, this is because God is at work both to will and to act.

    God used very clever educated people that had authority for his purposes!
    Please try and be nice to Alice she appears to be a God fearing genuine soul.

    We get too het up with the whys and wherefores of these things, now that Christ has died and is risen we need only pass on the message that we have heard from scripture itself and let God do the rest. (Always remembering that we still need to dilligently obey Gods law).

    And father Ron, just so that there are no ambiguities, science was created by God and is therefore under scriptural authority because scripture is the Word of God.

    In Christ

  59. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia, USA Says:

    “DOCTOR Rowan Williams is one of those men all but impossible to take seriously, for the simple fact that it’s all but impossible to believe he’s not play-acting a role he secretly finds ridiculous…Williams…You can detect something of the kind operating in secular contexts.”

    Like I said, a socialist appointed by socialist.

  60. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Suzanne, I’m not going to get into the ‘chicken and egg’ argument. Suffice to say that, if God is the ‘First Cause’, then all knowledge, indeed, comes from God. Therefore, scientia (knowledge) is still part of God’s ongoing revelation;

    As God’s Word became flesh, in Christ, so God’s will is still being revealed, Yes? - through Christ, the Word-made-flesh. No argument!

    What I am protesting here is the ‘closed-mind’ attitude that assumes that God is now silent and has nothing further to reveal to his listening children. Of course, there are still those who ‘will not hear’.

    This is the reason why Jesus taught in parable form. It requires ongoing dialogue with the Holy spirit to have access to God’s will for his people and world TODAY! Jesus told intransigent Scribes and Pharisees: “You read the Scriptures, but you still do not know me!”

    God’s wisdom is not confined to past ages! The requirements of the Law and the Prophets has been perfectly fulfilled in Jesus. We are nowe in the age of the New Covenant revealed by Christ.

  61. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Ron Smith said:
    “God’s wisdom is not confined to past ages! The requirements of the Law and the Prophets has been perfectly fulfilled in Jesus. We are nowe in the age of the New Covenant revealed by Christ”

    That is one of the few things you have written Smith that is true.  There is just one problem, and that is this…..until you become filled with the Holy Spirit and start allowing Him to open your eyes, you will not be able to understand the Word.

    Goodness man, just what part of “GO AND SIN NO MORE” is it that you just cannot get through your thick skull?

  62. Suzanne T Says:

    Sorry Father Ron but I agree with Gerry, I do so wish that you would not keep taking scripture out of context but I fear that I am banging my head against a brick wall.  However I will agree to disagree and keep praying for you, how’s that?

  63. Suzanne T Says:

    I wanted to say to everyone reading on this blog site that the most important thing is to uphold the truth and I am really heartened to see that the remnant appears to be the majority here on this site!largely it would seem thanks to the hard work done by Alice, I have been looking you up since I joined this blog and am happy to say that God’s will seems to be being done with a number of you, Alice, Garry, Gerry, Joe and of course Peter Akinola - all faithful saints.

    We look for the resurrection of the body and the life of the world to come. Amen

  64. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Well, I guess Number 64 above will get Smith thinking….what’s your response Ron??

  65. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Just that my Virus Programme must be working rather well, Gerry. Your URL was aborted.

  66. Gerry O'Brien, Newfoundland, Canada Says:

    Smith:  Read my message again. My goodness you are so focused on your destructive ways that you cannot even read properly.  It isn’t MY URL.

  67. Father Frank Gough Says:

    A (very) Brief (and incomplete) Guide
    to the Witness of the Bible
    to the Issues of Human Sexuality
    and Homosexual Conduct

    The Witness of the Old Testament
    Genesis 1-3 – The Creation Stories
    Genesis 9:20-27 - Hams act and Noah’s Curse
    Genesis 19:4-11 - The story of Sodom and Gomorrah
    Judges19:22-25 - The Rape of the Levite’s Concubine
    Leviticus 18:22 - God’s laws
    Leviticus 20:13 – God’s laws

    The Witness of the New Testament
    Matthew 5:17-18 – “Fulfilling the Law”
    Matthew 5:27-32 – The Seriousness of Sexual Sin
    Matthew 19:1-9 – the Nature of Marriage
    Matthew 19:12 – Chastity for the Sake of the Kingdom of Heaven
    Mark 7:21-23 – What Defiles a Person
    Mark 10:1-12 – Marriage
    Luke 8:7 – “Throwing Stones”
    Luke 15:25-32 – Our Responsibility to the “lost”
    John 4:1-42 – The Woman at the Well
    Romans 1:24-27 – Truth and Creation
    1 Corinthians 6:9 – “Immoral persons”
    2 Corinthians 12:21 – Repentance for Immorality
    Galatians 5:16-21 – Desires of the Flesh
    Colossians 3:5-6 – Put away evil
    1 Timothy 1:10 – “the Immoral”

  68. Father Frank Gough Says:

    Fr. Ron, I have read some of the research results published by the Royal Psychiatric Society, and I was quite dismayed to learn the much of their published “results” are really based upon the pseudo-science of geneticist Dr. Dean Hamer. Hamer published a study in 1993 in which he claimed a to have identified a link on the q28 region of the X chromosome in homosexual males. That link, according to his study, indicated that about 10% of the human population was genetically inclined to homosexuality.

    Here’s the kicker: The research was based upon a study of only 42 pairs of brothers, wherein both men were homosexual. That’s a total of 84 people. The required statistical basis for proven genetic linkage would be a MINIMUM of 8,000 persons. And that would be for preliminary results, only.

    Wait, there’s more.
    12 separate attempts to subsequently dupicate Hamer’s research have ALL failed to find any such genetic link.

    Further, in 1995, one of Hamer’s research assistants admitted falsifying reports on the research to increase the apparent percentage of genetically-induced or influenced homosexuality.

    Genetics researchers from Yale, Columbia and Louisiana State Universities noted that the Hamer report focused on social and political ramifications of genetic homosexuality rather than discussing scientific evidence.

    Finally, research by by William Byne and Bruce Parsons from Columbia University in 1993. After reviewing 135 different studies on homosexuality, their report summarized in its findings that there is no evidence at present to substantiate that biological factors are the primary basis for sexual orientation. At MOST, the report concluded, IF genetic contribution to homosexuality exists, it probably contributes not to homosexuality as such, but rather to some other behavioral trait that makes the homosexual “option” more readily available to some than others.

    Fr. Ron, the scientific evidence for people being genetically disposed toward homosexuality simply does not exist. But that does not mean that such a genetic link does not exist, it simply means that as of this point in time, there is no valid evidence for it. As of this date, there are at least two larger-scale studies being conducted here in the USA, both of which are expected to conclude in 2012.

    But none of that addresses the issue of teleology versus ontology. God never condemns any person for who they are, i.e.; for their ontology. God consistently addresses condemnation only toward behaviour he has proscribed.

    The underlying issue is one of whether Holy Scripture has the intrinsic authority of God. Is the Bible God’s Word written?

    I say it is.

  69. Father Ron Smith Says:

    Dear Father Frank,thank you for your clear and learned dissertation and the various quotes from Scripture. I am very much aware of what the Bible says about human sexuality. I am also very much aware that there have been advances in the understanding of how sexuality impinges upon our human relationships.

    There are, as you well know, presriptions about types of behaviour other than to do with sex - certainly in the Old testament - about the place of women and slaves in the context of a one-time contemporary society, which have no place in our world of today. Enlightenment has happened and our understanding of Biblical sanctions have to take cognisance of this.

    Again, as you are no doubt aware, Jesus had a great deal to say about human relationships - especially in the realm of marriage - but there is no evidence of his specific treatment of the homosexual situation, which, if it had been of paramount importance, he would surely have done.

    However, in searching the dominical teaching in the Gospels, there is just one place where, in the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 19, after his talk about marriage, Jesus has this to say:

    (Matt.19:12) “There are eunuchs born that way from their mother’s womb, and there are eunuchs made so by men and there are eunuchs who have made themselves that way for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Let anyone accept this who can!”
    We can guess which eunuchs are those of the second and third category. Who are those who are ‘born that way from their mother’s womb’?
    Could they not be homosexual in orientation?

    It is interesting that he adds this: “Let anyone accept this who can”. That could be said to presume that there were, and would be, those who would find this teaching difficult.

    Perhaps you might agree, that if this hypothesis is a possibility, then no-one can be blamed for being ‘Gay’. This could possibly be a ‘given’.

    That being said, each person is responsible for how they use their God-given sexuality. This applies to both ‘gay’ and ‘straight’ Christians.

    Regarding our interpretation of the Scriptures, which is one of the problems at the heart of the current stand-off in our Communion; does the word ‘hermeneutics’ have a place in the way that the Church accesses new revelation through the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit, in our use and interpretation of Scripture? Or are we to keep on issuing new versions of the Scriptures to suit our own individual tastes? Surely Scripture needs to be interpreted in the context of the world of today, with its different needs and pressures? And who better to guide us than the Holy Spirit who will not be confined to pre-Christian ways of ‘knowing’ God and God’s divine purpose.

  70. Father Frank Gough Says:

    Fr. Ron said: “if this hypothesis is a possibility, then no-one can be blamed for being ‘Gay’. This could possibly be a ‘given’. That being said, each person is responsible for how they use their God-given sexuality. This applies to both ‘gay’ and ‘straight’ Christians.”

    I agree that it is possible that one might have some sort of pre-disposition toward homosexuality. If so, then that is their ontological nature. I also agree that each and every person is responsible for using their sexuality in accordance with the expressed Word of God, that is, Holy Scripture.

    One’s ontology in no wise, however, controls behaviour. Behaviour, except in the extreme cases of mental illness, or of willing demonic possession is a matter of choice, always. We can choose to use our sexuality to honor God by our obedience to Him, or we can succumb to the temptation seek our pleasure rather than God’s, and in so doing dishonor God with our sexuality. And to be very frank, there is much more of this on the heterosexual side of human behaviour than otherwise. None of which justifies disobedience to God.

    Sin is defined as seeking our will, rather than God’s will. Seeking to use Holy Scripture to justify or condone homo-erotic behavior (or any partnered genito-erotic behaviour outside of marriage) absolutely falls into this category of seeking self-will, and such Scriptural proof-texting can only be done as an eisegetical exercise, regardless of the hermaneutic applied.

    Forgive me for stopping here and not completing the apologetic, but I must get to bed, as it’s about midnight here in Florida.

    God’s Peace be upon you, Fr. Ron.

  71. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Hide your young children, for Father Ron Guido Smith will come to the rescue of phedophiles, for he will find nothing in the Bible that forbids it, and he and other perverts will want inclusiveness:

    Quote from a phedophile, “I am tired of being forced into the shadows by society.  I have committed no crime, therefore there is no good reason that I should have to hide myself.  As long as pedophiles continue to hide, there is no chance of them ever being accepted”

    He believes, rather, that it is a sexual orientation with which he was born, and therefore, cannot deny … Pedophilia “has all the same characteristics as homosexuality, transvestism, fetishism, etc.”

    Here we go again, next stop, the twilight zone, where governments will force citizens to accept adults having sex with your children.

  72. Father Frank Gough Says:

    I’m going to start with a premise: God created human sexuality. In all ways that human sexuality has deviated from the Biblical normative, that is, one male husband and one female wife, is direct result of the Fall.

    God does not, therefore, create one to become a homosexual, or a paedophile, or a zoosexual.

    This does not change the fact that people do find themselves in these positions, with these sexual attractions. The major difficulty seems to be that as a western society, we fare very poorly in separating the person from the action.

    Not all zoosexuals act on their sexual attraction. Likewise for pedophiles, homosexuals, and heterosexuals. As somewhat rational beings, we can first of all choose whether or not to act, and then we can also choose how to act.

    A recent small study in the USA demonstrated that approximately 16% of adult males said that it was “somewhat true” that they felt sexual attraction to prepubescent children (either male or female), and 7% said it was “very true” that they felt this attraction. Yet only 0.2% said they had ever acted on this attraction as an adult.

    24% of adult males said it was “very true” that they felt sexual attraction to adolescent children, while 42 admitted that it was “somewhat true”. Of this group of responses, 11% admitting acting on this attraction after reaching adulthood. (This study did not exclude late adolescent couples wherein one person had reached legal adulthood)

    The point here is that no matter how you are sexually oriented, how you act on those attractions is a matter of choice. Because someone has an other-than-heterosexual orientation does NOT give them a moral or theological right to exercise that sexuality in a way that fulfills their own desires.

    But neither should someone be vilified because they find themselves with such a perceived sexuality.

    I have had the example in my own life a a priest , whom I’ll call Fr. Tom, who was openly homosexual. While a constant struggle, he chose to honor God by remaining chaste following the death of his wife. Yes he was gay. Yes, he married a woman and subsequently raised two children, both of whom are heterosexual. Yes, his wife knew of his sexual orientation. Despite having fallen into homoerotic sexual sin more than once prior to and after he married, he repented of his actions and made a commitment after one such sinful episode to resist the temptation engage in what he termed “homoerotic episodes”. He recommitted to love his wife, regardless of his sexual orientation, and do his best to be a good husband, father, and priest. And he worked at that commitment faithfully until his death, at age 77.

    Fr. Tom set an example for many in the gay community in the large western US city in which he lived and served. There was a Christian support group for gays and lesbians at his church, to help them grow in Christ, always upholding the standard of sexual chastity for all persons, and offering acceptance, love, and forgiveness for all repentant sinners.

    Fr. Tom was a godly man. Not perfect, but godly. He was also homosexual, and chose to honor God with his sexuality through an obedient heart.

    I wish all priests would choose to do the same.

  73. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Nice to hear, Father Frank Gough, that example of an idividual that chose God over Worldly desires, acceptable unto God:

    Romans 12:
    1 I Beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye give up your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable serving of God.
    2 And fashion not yourselves like unto this world, but be ye changed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is the good, and acceptable and perfect will of God.