Sunday, May 23, 2021

Turnings (III)

This will be close to my last post as the "Anglican Curmudgeon". While I maintain my curmudgeonly skepticism toward today's idols (religious and otherwise), I can no longer claim the moniker "Anglican".  I do not presume to speak for others, but only for myself. And the objective truth is that I am no longer a member (or adherent) of the Anglican Communion, whatever grouping of denominations may lay claim to that name. 

Your Curmudgeon has followed the example of G.K. Chesterton, who came in time to realize that the grand Protestant experiment, without a magisterium, could do nothing but splinter into further denominational fragments, regardless of their claimed heritage. Like my model G. K., I have been received into the Roman Catholic Church. (See the first post in this series for more background.) 

It was one thing to criticize from the inside looking out, but it is not the same from the outside looking in. Removing myself from ECUSA made me indifferent to its fate.  Whether the Anglican Communion is on a different downward path may still be an open question, but the ECUSA-led schism in its ranks no longer attracts my attention -- so I am ceasing to write on that subject, as well. Quod scripsi, scripsi -- I will leave this blog up for the time being, so that the Guide can serve as a quick locator for specific topics.

The blog will therefore become a sculpture in amber of ECUSA's inexorable decline, chiefly the consequence of its flouting of its own and this country's laws for its leaders' short-term purposes.

The desultory legal contests ECUSA engaged in are now, thankfully, entirely resolved, with the exception of the final battle in the Supreme Court of South Carolina. For the sake of completeness, I will reserve my final post(s) on this blog to comment on how that battle turns out.  Until then, the reader can choose from among its more than 1,300 posts to date, indexed topically by the Guide. (There is, alas, no index to the almost 7,000 comments, but if you know the commenter's name, you can use the blog's search engine to find whatever that commenter wrote.)

I have no regrets either on leaving the Anglican Communion, which also (along with its parent, the Church of England) now shows signs of the further splintering envisioned in the links indexed in this post, and in this one. The "Communion" of its title is now honored more in the breach than in the observance, and I remain pessimistic about the capability of its current leadership to welcome back into the fold those it has effectively spurned by embracing the Zeitgeist in derogation of its scriptural heritage. 

In short, what previously made me an Anglican -- the belief that while rejecting the authority of the Magisterium we as Anglicans could yet remain true to Christ's teachings as handed down to us from the saints -- has become impossible to sustain, thanks to the vacillation and inconstancy of our overseers (Greek: episkopoi). Nothing "episcopal" remains of the Episcopal Church (USA), because its bishops have deserted their posts, while in the process expelling from their ranks all who rejected their ad hoc interpretations of Holy Scripture. 

This site was never limited just to Anglican / Episcopalian topics -- there was a lot of leavening thrown in, as its motto says, "for good measure." For leavening to be of any use, there has to be dough, and I have not decided yet how best to keep baking content. Fortunately (or unfortunately), the political scene in these so-called United States is so dispiriting that I have no desire to add to the general cacophony. The trend may self-correct before long, but if not, the priority should be protecting one's family from the disintegration taking place before our eyes. 

As Margaret Thatcher once observed: "The trouble with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money" -- and although closer to that point than ever before, we are not there yet.   


22 comments:

  1. I am sorry to hear this, although I'd be the first to admit that topics in the Anglican/Episcopal world are getting rather thin these days.

    As you (and the other clickers of the gallimaufry will attest) are doubtless aware, I have years in both in TEC (it was PECUSA back then) and the RCC. I think there is too much important to comment on in both and, in many cases, it's pretty much the same thing. The battle will continue, your input into it is valuable.

    I've commented on high-profile Tiber swimmers such as Greg Griffith and Gavin Ashenden elsewhere, won't repeat that here.

    We recently went on holiday in Charleston, SC, what's at stake in the final act of the property wars is very much on display.

    Thank you for all you have done over the years in this saga. I wish I could say that it was done, but for both the Anglican/Episcopal world and the RCC it isn't. Keep in touch with us and don't be a stranger.

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  2. I am sure that the RC Curmudgeon will encounter things in his new Church that will need elucidation for us Prots. What is going to happen to the German priests and bishops who recently conducted same sex blessings for instance? Keep in touch my friend. If you are ever back in SC, give us a call. It would be nice to share a meal with you and yours again.

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  3. Best wishes, and many thanks for your service to other believers over the years.

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  4. I genuinely hope you will find peace and happiness. I became a Catholic almost 40 years ago and have never regretted it. There has been some rough sledding, but that will be true anywhere.

    A few things that have helped me in these times:

    1). There is a difference between the Faith and Church politics. As a visible society the Chuch must have a necessarily imperfect and sometimes discouraging politics. Don’t let disappointment in one cause you to doubt the other.

    2). The Magisterium was given to us for our comfort. Don’t let it drive you crazy if you think you need to correct it or the whole thing’s going to crash. Have all the opinions you want (I certainly do), but trust the Holy Spirit and your conscience.

    3). Our friend Chesterton once noted that, in Ireland he noticed that, when asked to identify their religion, Protestants tended to to say “I’m a good Protestant,” and Catholics, “I’m a bad Catholic.” We mostly do our best and trust in God’s mercy, and I hope in that way we can prevent having our religion come to resemble our politics.

    4). We remain under the sway of original sin, all of us. That can actually be for me a source of comfort. The clergy are not a holy caste, but struggling men, like ourselves.

    Hope I don’t come off as a blowhard or as smug. Didn’t want to say nothing, always hard to say the right thing.

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    1. Wise and welcome words, Rick -- thank you for engaging this blog for so many years. I (and it) would have been poorer without your contributions.

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  5. Thanks for all you have done over the years and will continue to do for the Kingdom. I have been so edified and enlightened by your posts. I recently found out that an old acquaintance of mine, Dr. Todd Hartch, has joined the Roman Catholic Church. He teaches history at Eastern Kentucky University and writes books on the Latin American Church and has a new book on the common good entitled A Time To build: How to Find the True, Good, and Beautiful in America. I thought you would like to know about Todd and perhaps meet him one day.

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    1. The book sounds very timely, Langley Granbery -- I look forward to getting to know it and its author.

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    2. Great. If I could get an email address for you, I'll forward his latest email with the podcast he was on.

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  6. Sorry to see both you and Gavin Ashenden leave. Thanks for your help in the Diocese of San Joaquin.

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  7. Mr. Haley, know of our love for you and the edifying wisdom you brought to matters during this tumultuous time of disintegration. We were truly blessed with your input and education in legal matters. There should be a medal for you on this side of eternity. I'm sure one awaits you in the Life to come. We are all indebted to you. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. May you find abundant blessing in your continued walk with the Lord. Know of my household's love for you. In His peace, Milton and Audrey

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  8. Alex Haley, you have entered into company with several notable saints throughout history, such as J.H. Newman, G.K. Chesterton, my dear friend Gavin Ashenden, among others. The path to Rome is well worn, and the tattered vestments left on the Anglican banks of the Tiber are a testimony to the effectual prayers of the Saints who have called Rome their rock and foundation. I wish you all the best, and perhaps someday you might help pull me out of the Tiber onto the Roman side of the river.

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  9. I want to thank you for the excellent work you've done over the years helping different observers to understand the complicated and conflicting court decisions. We look forward to your comments on the final resolution of the South Carolina cases as well.

    Otherwise, I wish you every blessing and grace as a Roman Catholic. I remain an Anglican but have no condemnation or criticism for people who identify, as you do, the profound problems inflicting global Anglicanism.

    But one question, if I may: will you be entering the Ordinariate? Do you have access to an ordinariate parish nearby?

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  10. Many blessings brother as you enter full communion with Rome! I'm Anglican but share many of your views as to the serious problems in the Anglican world.

    Question, if I may: will you be entering the Ordinariate of the Chair of St Peter? Do you have access to an ordinariate parish where you live? Some ex-Lutheran friends recently did that and their experience has been very positive so far.

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    1. A reply to both you and Abu Daoud: My preference would have been to join the Ordinariate, yes, but its closest parish is almost 600 miles away. Maybe in God’s good time . . .

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  11. Mr. Haley, Best of luck and God's blessings on you and your family. An awful lot of us will miss you. I remain Anglican in South Carolina, but I do not fault you in turning to Rome. Your faith and witness for Christ will enrich that Church. All the best.

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  12. Haley locuta. Causa finita est.

    Good luck Allan. As others have said (and as you well know) it may be prove as much of a struggle, albeit in a different way, on the other bank of the Tiber.

    It was a pleasure to meet you in Quincy back in 2013.

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  13. My best wishes to you Mr.Haley. I fully appreciate your move. I have loved you careful analysis of situations Anglican. Also the in-depth explorations of the Nativity and Crucifixion dates was impressive. In regard to those, would you mind if I made copies as long as I give you proper attribution if your blog goes away and I ever use the works?

    Christianity is in a perilous state these days. The teaching and practice of many ecclesial bodies is rife with heresy and apostasy. I have seen the easy fracturing in Protestantism since they are without any sure guidance, just their interpretation of Scripture. They almost always toss away Holy Tradition.


    As to my way forward, while not exactly what I wanted, my wife and I joined the local Methodist Church. We wanted a local congregation in our small rural Texas town. It was the best compromise between my Anglicanism (leaning Catholic(Roman Catholic/Eastern Orthodox)) and her Protestant upbringing. There is a "TEC" congregation but it is "TEC", nuf said. Other options were too Protestant and the Roman Church with the current occupier of the seat of St. Peter is not for us. One would have to drive nearly 45 minutes or more for other options in this rural area of Texas.

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  14. Your journey mirrors mine in many ways, and happily ended in the same (unexpected!) destination. My journey was a hard one over rocky, uneven ground, with many unseen turns. I expect yours was, too. After becoming Catholic, it was sometimes painful for me to look back at what I had left. Over time, I have learned to appreciate where I have been, while being grateful for where I am. And when I become frustrated, I remember it is us sinners who cause the problems in Christ’s church. But it is still His church. Welcome home. I wish you Christ’s peace.

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  15. Mr. Haley, are you aware of a date or time frame when the South Carolina Supreme Court decision should be due out? Thank you! Hoping all are well in your home.

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    1. Milton, as of this date the South Carolina Supreme Court has not yet acted upon the request by ECUSA to review Judge Dickson's ruling. There is no deadline or time frame; they will act when they are ready. Bear in mind, however, that July and August are traditional vacation months, so we might have to wait until this fall or even later.

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  16. I have decided to remain in "the Way, the Truth, and the Life..." it pre-dates any "man-made" religion as well as "time" itself. I can fully understand the gathering of oneself to a "camp" that agrees with original gospel, as the Logos himself preached. I too am a member of a small group, who fled the apostate and former "episcopal" church.

    I applaud your effort to keep us abreast of the satanical nature of TEC and it's like. I hope and pray that, in the future, you will keep as close a watch on the entire "communion" from Rome to Africa. You have a God given talent for elucidation to the laymen.

    Mr. Haley, you have done an admirable and good service and I encourage you to continue upon that path.

    Thank you Sir and Godspeed.

    -MD

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