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» Ship of Fools   » Special interest discussion   » Ecclesiantics   » Does the CofE really think it's THE Church of God? (Page 2)

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Source: (consider it) Thread: Does the CofE really think it's THE Church of God?
Augustine the Aleut
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quote:
Originally posted by venbede:
"Roman Catholic" was the standard usage that I learnt in a secular context.

It is used by academic Roman Catholics when discussing liturgy in my experience.

I now realise that it is tactless in some contexts.

Just saying "Romans" is critical rather than descriptive.

I use Roman Catholic, but most RC scholars (in Canada, at any rate) will say Catholic. In discussing liturgical matters, I will use Roman as that pertains to the rite, rather than Byzantine or Coptic or etc. In jurisdictional matters, I use Latin to distinguish between Slovak Byzantine, Melkite, Maronite, Ukrainian, etc. In all cases, I explain why, as otherwise some folk get offended.

In my youth, I knew a CoI ordinand from Armagh who would refer to "Popish Dissenters," and I hoped that this was an affectation of sorts.

Anglican_Brat was likely taught at one of major Anglican seminaries where this point of view is widely held, although I suspect that the position is repressed by clergy serving in the field. The Articles do not have a disciplinary role in Canada and, if I am correctly informed, clerics are not required to subscribe to them on ordination.

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Gamaliel
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All of which begs the question what 'Anglican' actually means ...

There are probably as many definitions of that as there are Anglicans. And then some.

I've only ever met one ACNA ordinand, a pleasant chap from Tennessee who was visiting the UK for a conference. He was delighted to have been invited to the pub and stood a few pints of real ale by the CofE clergy he met after a service at Christ Church Cathedral in Oxford.

Whatever else we might say on the other issues it convinces me of one thing.

Cask ale should be compulsory.

Can that be the 40th Article?

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Nick Tamen

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quote:
Originally posted by churchgeek:
(BTW, here in the US, there is also a denomination called the Church of God - not to be confused with the Church of God in Christ, of course....)

My grandparents knew a woman who was a member of the Church of God. She referred to all other denominations as "nickname churches."

She also reported on attending an Episcopal church once. She claimed she'd never go back. People were very friendly, she said, "but there just wasn't nothing to it but stand up, sit down and mumble." [Devil]

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Callan
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Originally posted by Felafool:

quote:
"The Church of God, of which we are members, has taken bread and wine and given thanks over them according to our Lord's command. These holy gifts are now offered to us that, with faith and thanksgiving, we may share in the communion of the body and blood of Christ."
I used these very words at a home communion this morning.

It's fairly obvious from context that it doesn't imply that the Church of God is coterminous with the Church of England because I can tell you exactly who gave thanks the holy gifts in question and it was yours truly and the congregation of St. Agatha by the Gasworks. Who happened to be acting as members of the Church of God. I defer to no-one in my admiration for yours truly and the congo of St. Agatha, but even I would hesitate to suggest that we are coterminous with the Church of God (heck of a field promotion, though). So by definition the Church of God is not coterminous with the congregation who gave thanks for any given holy gifts. They are merely a part of the Church of God. So if there isn't a necessary identification between the people giving thanks over bread and wine and the Church of God, it hardly follows that there is a necessary identification between the Christian Confession to which they belong and the Church of God.

All that is asserted is that the people giving thanks over bread and wine are members of the Church of God, the extent and boundaries of which are left up to God, whose Church it is. Which doesn't seem unreasonable.

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How easy it would be to live in England, if only one did not love her. - G.K. Chesterton

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Felafool
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Thanks for an interesting discussion so far, taking us places I didn't expect.

As a committed non-denominational and non-religious follower of Jesus I quite happily refer to myself a catholic - meaning I identify with 'one holy apostolic catholic church' - the universal transtemporal multi-denominational (and non-denom) Church of God.

As many of you have kindly pointed out, the problem lies in my own ignorance/ stubbornness /faultfinding/ misunderstanding. I plead guilty to 2 of those, the first and the last.

I am grateful for those of you who have explained their own understanding of the phrase, yet remain unconvinced that it says what some of you (or I) take it to mean. I am content that the CofE does NOT think it is exclusively THE Church of God, and am sorry for making that inference in the OP.

I now think I understand that the liturgy I questioned is intended to inform us that the bread and wine have been pre-prepared within the Church of God, and that's OK with me. The setting and the liturgy implies that the bread and wine have been prepared by the CofE, a member of the Church of God. That's also OK with me.

But I also understand that other churches not in the CofE, but equally members of the Church of God, may prepare the elements in other ways, and that's also OK with me (and also OK with most CofE people).

I like Arethosemyfeet's comment which echoes my own understanding:

quote:
...God can ordain any minister He chooses by any means he chooses, and that the celebration of Holy Communion is the celebration of Holy Communion, regardless of what the celebrant understands by that...
Which is why, with all my non-Anglican hang-ups, I currently worship at a CofE church and am content to celebrate cummunion however it is done, despite my difficulty in understanding of the words used.

I still think the phrase in question could be more explicit, but as many have said, the liturgy isn't written just for me.

May the Lord have mercy on me.

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I don't care if the glass is half full or half empty - I ordered a cheeseburger.

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Gamaliel
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And may he have mercy upon us all ...

At the risk of being awkward and contrary, I am tempted to take issue with your claim to be 'non-religious'. I don't believe that any of us are 'non-religious.'

Even apparent non-religiosity is a form of religiosity.

Some of the most 'religious' people I've met, in the pejorative sense of the term (and it's not used pejoratively across the board, of course) have been those who have made the biggest song and dance about being 'non-religious.'

Just as some of the most 'denominational' people I've met in terms of mindset have been those who've crowed loudest about being 'non-denominational.'

I hasten to add that I am not laying either of these charges at your door, but I suspect most - if not all of us - are much more 'religious' than we think we are ...

At least, those of us for whom the term 'religious' is one of suspicion rather than simply something descriptive.

I'm often tempted to say to such people, 'Christianity is a religion, get over it already ...'

Plus to point out that James wasn't averse to using the term in his epistle ...

James 1:27 http://biblehub.com/james/1-27.htm

But that's by the by ...

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Felafool
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As often happens, I'm caught out with no appeal by Gamaliel's piercing intellect. I confess to my inverted pride at trying to be non-religious.

I'll go with James' definition of true religion - is there / could there be a whole other thread on what it means to be religious or non-religious as a Christian?

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I don't care if the glass is half full or half empty - I ordered a cheeseburger.

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Anglican_Brat
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Re: The question of right intention, let's continue the discussion in another thread:

http://forum.ship-of-fools.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=008508

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It's Reformation Day! Do your part to promote Christian unity and brotherly love and hug a schismatic.

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Gamaliel
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quote:
Originally posted by Felafool:
As often happens, I'm caught out with no appeal by Gamaliel's piercing intellect. I confess to my inverted pride at trying to be non-religious.

I'll go with James' definition of true religion - is there / could there be a whole other thread on what it means to be religious or non-religious as a Christian?

Flattery will get you everywhere ...

I think it's a really good question, Felafool and excellent material for a new thread.

I suspect it boils down though to that indefinable quality we call 'authenticity'. We can't put our finger on it but we recognise it when we see it.

Fancy starting that new thread and seeing where it takes us?

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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ExclamationMark
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
Thing is, however we qualify this then it's going to cause some problems for someone or other.

If I went to a Baptist church and they were 'breaking bread' I wouldn't think, 'Look at these Baptists, do they really think they are entitled to do this when they are an heretickal conventicle ...' * or 'What are they doing? Are they implying that they're the only people entitled to do this? What about the Anglican church round the corner or the Methodists down the road ...?'

Ok, so the Baptists wouldn't have a form of words that implied that but then, I wouldn't have taken the Anglican form of words in the way Felafool interpreted them either ... for the reasons others have listed already.

* Needless to say, I don't think of Baptist churches as 'heretickal conventicles'. I think of them as Baptist churches ie congregations of Christians with a particular baptistic and congregational polity.

Whatever form of words we use, it's always going to bear the possibility of upsetting/confusing/misleading someone.

For example, on the (rare) occasions when I get to recite the creed I'll substitute the word "universal" for "catholic." The latter is just too confusing as very few people understand it's secondary meaning. Sitting in a CofE church and doing just this I find myself in a minority of one (usually), drawing strange looks. The point is this - do we really think about what we are reciting/praying/singing? If we do and disagree, what happens next?

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american piskie
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quote:
Originally posted by Gee D:
quote:
Originally posted by american piskie:


There is no "Anglican Church". That's right, there is no Anglican Church.

What about the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand, and Polynesia, of Canada, of Australia, to start with? Daughter churches no doubt but still called by the name Anglican. Unless by "no" you meant "no one church and one only".
Context. The original statement was to the effect that the CofE was part of the Anglican Church which was part of the Church Universal. I was disputing the implicit idea there that there is an Anglican Church of which the CofE (and the other Anglican churches) are a part. They are free-standing, but with complicated mutual relationships. Some are members of something called the Anglican Communion, some are not. But the grand project of "The Anglican Church" is dead in the water.
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Gee D
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Thank you for your explanation. I don't understand what "grand project" you refer to in your last sentence, but let's leave that to pass.

[ 09. August 2017, 07:15: Message edited by: Gee D ]

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Not every Anglican in Sydney is Sydney Anglican

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Gamaliel
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@Exclamation Mark, well I have a similar problem reciting '... and the Son' - the controversial 'filioque clause'. I incline towards the Orthodox view on that issue, so far as I understand it - and I'm not sure I do ...

So I tend not to say it. That doesn't draw bewildered looks as I'm simply going quiet there rather than substituting an alternative phrase or qualifier.

On the term 'catholic', yes, I can understand you concern about the secondary meaning but I very much doubt that the regulars at Anglican services would be taking it in that secondary sense anyway.

Sure, there might be people there who haven't even thought about it or who are simply repeating it by rote but that's their look-out not yours. Besides, even in the least catechetical of settings there's still opportunity for people to find out what they are saying and singing if they are so inclined.

Our mileages may vary, but I don't have any difficulty with the word 'catholic' in that context as I know that most of those using it would understand it in the 'universal' sense. Although, I must admit it used to puzzle me as a kid, 'But we aren't Catholics ...'

Fr Gregory, the Orthodox priest who used to post here, once observed to me that the term 'catholic' should be understood in an active and 'now and not yet' sense - insofar as we should all be striving towards 'catholicity' - rather than understanding it as something already attained and achieved.

If that makes sense ...

Just a few thoughts.

--------------------
Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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