Saturday, June 21, 2008

GAFCON BOOKLET for all the pilgrims: Way Truth & Life

It is printed in Jerusalem in order to be available to the 1000 present, and was published on the 20th

It shows the following signs/weaknesses:

a. Hasty writing and production of the material
b. Written in generally generic evangelical language and thus limited by this form
c. Minimal editing by the English lady editor.

It covers these topics:

a. The familiar story of the innovations in sexuality since Lambeth 1998, written by the Archbishop of Nigeria and emphasizing the failure of the Windsor Process and the Archbishop of Canterbury to deal with the crisis in a biblically-coherent manner.
b. Thus the need for GAFCON – to recover the vision of what the Anglican Communion is all about, its true goals and essence.
c. Short statements of basic doctrine concerning God, Christ and Salvation, all in a generic evangelical form.
d. Strong emphasis upon the authority of Scripture, it right use and interpretation; its clarity for the current questions.
e. The common (and relatively recent) presentation of the Anglican way as “lower case” –evangelical, catholic and charismatic.
f. A clear recognition of the authority of the BCP 1662 and the Articles for the Anglican Way and a desire to be guided by them—but with no specifics.
g. A commitment to worship that originates in the form and doctrine of the classic BCP but expands in non-English cultures and different musical contexts to being a flower from the BCP root and open to growing in the new context (where church growth may be intense!).

It appears not to have considered the possibility of:

a. The presence in the Anglican Way of a classic high-church (Caroline divines) approach as being an important “stream” and likewise an anglo-catholic one that is not Rome-ward going.
b. The presence of those who wish to be in the Anglican Way and have deep roots in it, but find themselves not able to speak with certainty on some of the doctrines confidently asserted by generic evangelicalism.
c. Its wholesale use of generic evangelical language as not the best way to write a document for the “world.”

In SUMMARY. Nothing here that is new! It is a confirmation that GAFCON is essentially an evangelical, charismatic movement lead by spiritual giants from Africa, a movement that is a growth of Anglican evangelical missionary work, years ago, but a growth that is now on the world-stage mature and a major phenomenon to take into account. The West would do well to mark, learn and digest….we need the passion of the evangelist in the hearts of all our clergy and lay leaders! We need to think again of wining souls (people) for Jesus!

The Revd Dr Peter Toon

The Prayer Book Society of the USA, Box 35220, Philadelphia PA 19128-0220

1 800 727 1928


Anonymous said...

Thanks for sticking up for the Caroline Divines and non-Romish Catholic Anglicans.

DomWalk said...

My guess is that the GS leadership recognizes that doctrinal Anglo-Catholicism is part of the problem.