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Source: (consider it) Thread: Non-religious music at St Sepulchre's
Gamaliel
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Yeah, I get that ...

However, I do wonder whether the Anglo-Catholic objection to the joint youth services you mention wasn't so much that they were 'charismatic' - some Anglo-Catholics are charismatic too, you know - but rather some pastoral concerns about the degree of manipulation and suggestibility involved in some of these types of service ...

So it might not simply be distaste at the style and churchmanship but a more pastoral and theological concern about the content and delivery ...

Incidentally, I noticed that my daughters were very sceptical of anything charismatic and full-on evangelical during their teenage years - and I don't think that was simply because their cynical old dad was moving away from all of that ...

They appeared to be able to 'see through it' in a more street-wise kind of way than I would have done when I was young and impressionable.

They went on a couple of church youth weekends away where emotional appeals and charismatic elements were introduced and they found it both cringe-worthy and unconvincing ...

'And it's like ... and it's like ... God is so awesome? Yeah? I mean ... it's like ... it's like this passage from the Bible? Isn't it just so amazing? yeah?'

Need I go on?

[Disappointed]

Don't get me wrong, I'm not tarring all evangelicals and charismatics with the same brush but there is a kind of Puritanical slash-and-burn thing going on in contemporary Anglican evangelical charismaticdom which I find very off-putting.

Rather than seeking to 'renew' or integrate some of the traditional stuff with their own particular expression or adapting it to adopt it, as it were - as Anglican charismatics tended to do in the past - they are chucking it all out and ending up with a mess of pottage that both lacks the gravitas of their own Anglican tradition on the one hand and lacks the authenticity of the older non-conformist traditions on the other.

For my money it ends up out of kilter on all counts.

--------------------
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Bishops Finger
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pete173 said earlier:

Just to say that there are some conversations going on wrt the St Sepulchre's issues

A salutary reminder that TPTB are aware, and that perhaps we don't indeed have the full story.

IJ

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Baptist Trainfan
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Indeed.
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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
Rather than seeking to 'renew' or integrate some of the traditional stuff with their own particular expression or adapting it to adopt it, as it were - as Anglican charismatics tended to do in the past - they are chucking it all out and ending up with a mess of pottage.

Although he was no charismatic, I remember reading a passage in "The Post-Evangelical Debate" by Michael Saward in which he unfavourably contrasted more modern forms of evangelicalism (well, 15-years-ago versions!) with his own form which was still rooted in the Anglican tradition.

[ 25. August 2017, 16:39: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Brenda Clough
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A load of letters on the subject in the Guardian.

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ExclamationMark
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
Yeah, I get that ...

However, I do wonder whether the Anglo-Catholic objection to the joint youth services you mention wasn't so much that they were 'charismatic' - some Anglo-Catholics are charismatic too, you know - but rather some pastoral concerns about the degree of manipulation and suggestibility involved in some of these types of service ...

So it might not simply be distaste at the style and churchmanship but a more pastoral and theological concern about the content and delivery ...

Incidentally, I noticed that my daughters were very sceptical of anything charismatic and full-on evangelical during their teenage years - and I don't think that was simply because their cynical old dad was moving away from all of that ...

They appeared to be able to 'see through it' in a more street-wise kind of way than I would have done when I was young and impressionable.

They went on a couple of church youth weekends away where emotional appeals and charismatic elements were introduced and they found it both cringe-worthy and unconvincing ...

'And it's like ... and it's like ... God is so awesome? Yeah? I mean ... it's like ... it's like this passage from the Bible? Isn't it just so amazing? yeah?'

Need I go on?

[Disappointed]

Don't get me wrong, I'm not tarring all evangelicals and charismatics with the same brush but there is a kind of Puritanical slash-and-burn thing going on in contemporary Anglican evangelical charismaticdom which I find very off-putting.

Rather than seeking to 'renew' or integrate some of the traditional stuff with their own particular expression or adapting it to adopt it, as it were - as Anglican charismatics tended to do in the past - they are chucking it all out and ending up with a mess of pottage that both lacks the gravitas of their own Anglican tradition on the one hand and lacks the authenticity of the older non-conformist traditions on the other.

For my money it ends up out of kilter on all counts.

Yep my daughters were/are the same. I'd say my own way of looking at things is along the lines you suggest - less new wine and a little more historical. I must admit that I find most churches of the charismatic ilk rather identikit and lacking individuality. They get bums on seats which is what the denominations are looking for - the depth is more of an issue.

In this case though, it was an assumption about what was involved. The assumption (stirred up by a few of the congregation) was so far wide of the mark it was laughable.

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LutheranChik
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I've had three church homes that were popular venues for secular musicians. Relations with the church folk were always cordial, and a few of the musicians actually wound up becoming members -- at least of our choirs, if not the actual congregations. I don't see a downside to opening up one's space for secular performances as long as the church gets some sort of reimbursement for light/power/ maintenance. (One church actually became the home of a local music society that paid monthly rent and, frankly, helped keep the lights on in an oversized, white- elephant building that was more trouble than it was worth but thst the congregation refused to leave.)

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Honest Ron Bacardi
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L'organist wrote:
quote:
Another plant, the Harbour Church in Portsmouth, is even stranger. There is no mention anywhere of communion and an enquiry about when a eucharist or communion service could be found was greeted with "we're not that kind of church". The website is heavy on Alpha, which they advertise with a fetching photograph of Bear Grylls.

Hmmm. I don't personally know anything about this church (not even in the same diocese) but looking at their website I get the impression it isn't intended to be a parish church. They are specifically targeting the un-churched and those who left the church. They also describe themselves as a "Resourcing Church" working with the existing parishes to reach the missing generation. That does suggest a rather different thing may be going on here. They are perhaps more a para-church organisation.

If they can reach those missing people and start bringing them up on more solid food, then pass them on to the parishes to grow them whilst the newcomers themselves bring their "oomph" (Thanks BF!), then is that a problem?

So many ifs of course. I recognise that. But if that's what they are aiming to do it might explain the "we're not that sort of church" comment.

(PS - as a singer I have both rehearsed and performed in concert at St. Sepulchre's. I'd be very sad to see it go, though more details please. I'm not sure its acoustics are that wondeful however.)

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Gamaliel
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What bothers me about that approach, Honest Ron, is that well-intentioned outreach efforts like that end up becoming dislocated ...

I've heard of 'non-eucharistic' Fresh Expressions that believe that people are out off by communion and so they mess around down Starbucks instead ...

I've yet to o see a great deal of evidence that these things are channeling people into existing churches, they mostly seem to attract existing Christians who think they're being cool, trendy and radical.

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Honest Ron Bacardi
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I do agree, Gamaliel - that would be my concern. On the other hand, I notice that one of their team is also a canon or minor canon, or whatever, at Portsmouth cathedral. So maybe that may help and be part of the deal.

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Anglo-Cthulhic

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Enoch
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It would be useful to know a bit more about the facts. All the same I think I'm closer to Baptist Trainfan and Exclamation Mark than to L'Organist and Viola on this.

We have concerts etc here and encourage them, but there's all the difference in the world between doing something because it fits your strategy and where you think you want to go, and doing something because your church has ended up with a situation where a very large tail has been wagging what has become rather a small and enervated dog, and where it feels as though the tail thinks it is entitled to have the dog that happens to suit it.

We don't know how much parish life was left in the church before it linked up with HTB, but I'd suspect its lamp was flickering pretty feebly. Otherwise, HTB would not either have been called in or have spotted it as a good spot for an initiative.

If that assumption is correct, then we can say, that however convenient St Sepulchres might have been for the London musical establishment, as a church it no longer worked. So objectively one can hardly complain if the diocese, the area dean or the PCC decided that something needed to change drastically. If the downside of that is that eventually the relationship between the church and the musical establishment has to take second place to the church's belief as to what its own mission should be, then one has to accept that.

Whether that relationship survives or breaks down completely may depend as much on whether the musical establishment does accept that, as on anything the incumbent does or does not do.

It isn't going to work if an amorphous group of people who are not members of the congregation, and do not play an active role in the Christian life of the church, however important those people may perceive themselves to be, tell the vicar and the active members of the congregation 'no, your mission shouldn't be what you think it is because it doesn't suit us and we think we know best'.

Whether it the kingdom of heaven ends up being enlarged or not, we can only wait and see. There's an interesting parallel with the abrasiveness and aggressive controversiality of many of the nineteenth century 'heroes of Anglo-Catholocism', people like Alexander MacKonochie.

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Baptist Trainfan
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Could you elucidate that last point, it sounds intriguing!
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Captain Smith
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:

We don't know how much parish life was left in the church before it linked up with HTB, but I'd suspect its lamp was flickering pretty feebly. Otherwise, HTB would not either have been called in or have spotted it as a good spot for an initiative.

If that assumption is correct, then we can say, that however convenient St Sepulchres might have been for the London musical establishment, as a church it no longer worked. So objectively one can hardly complain if the diocese, the area dean or the PCC decided that something needed to change drastically. If the downside of that is that eventually the relationship between the church and the musical establishment has to take second place to the church's belief as to what its own mission should be, then one has to accept that.


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Captain Smith
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The church was financially viable for a number of years prior to the HTB plant in 2013, not least because of venue hire which was mainly for rehearsals and concerts thereby fulfilling its mission to musicians. The diocese was therefore sufficiently confident to grant funds to reorder the east end, replace the heating system and provide humane toilet facilities amongst other things.

By 2013 the makeup of the PCC strongly reflected the stakeholders in the parish: the parish clerk and lay chair were both bellringers and roughly half of the membership were musicians, mainly members of the church choir.

Rev Ingall wrote to the PCC after his licensing (which none of the PCC or congregation had been invited to attend) saying that he didn't see any incompatibility between his ministry and the existing activities, i.e. mainly concerts and rehearsals. While the recent letter to hirers is largely framed in terms of practical use of the building that's really a matter of the daytime use: the comparatively large office staff use part of the main body of the church for their work which is mainly to do with administering Alpha courses.

For over three years they've been able to coexist with professional ensembles rehearsing on weekdays but for some reason they no longer can. There are spaces in the church which could be utilised as office space but for some reason those spaces can't be reconfigured even though the income from retaining the hire business would pay for the work. As for evening hires, the last accounts deposited with the Charity Commission don't indicate plans to increase Alpha and/or other courses to the extent that they'd cut across the existing hire programme.

The sudden change in policy suggests the decision was made for something other than purely practical reasons. While the PCC and incumbent naturally have discretion to make such decisions they are only temporary custodians of the building and have a responsibility to be honest with their stakeholders who extend beyond the immediate worship community. I don't think their public statements to date have fulfilled that obligation.

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Augustine the Aleut
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
It would be useful to know a bit more about the facts. All the same I think I'm closer to Baptist Trainfan and Exclamation Mark than to L'Organist and Viola on this.

We have concerts etc here and encourage them, but there's all the difference in the world between doing something because it fits your strategy and where you think you want to go, and doing something because your church has ended up with a situation where a very large tail has been wagging what has become rather a small and enervated dog, and where it feels as though the tail thinks it is entitled to have the dog that happens to suit it.

We don't know how much parish life was left in the church before it linked up with HTB, but I'd suspect its lamp was flickering pretty feebly. Otherwise, HTB would not either have been called in or have spotted it as a good spot for an initiative.

I've no real knowledge of the situation, but I have enough knowledge of organizational life to wonder if it be less a matter of a feebly flickering lamp (and there is, of course, a matter of subjectivity; one person's feeble flicker is another's brave and steadfast witness) than a matter of organizational reach and expansion, and trying to prove a political point. I have been in parishes where things collapsed owing to a dreadful mix of personal and programme ambition.

Reading through the details, it looks a bit too untidy to allow for a simple explanation.

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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Could you elucidate that last point, it sounds intriguing!

The people that more recent Anglo-Catholics have regarded as heroes of the faith were introducing major innovations. They got very steamed up about making changes which really stuck in the craw of prevailing religious sensibilities. Fancy vestments, fancy rituals etc. went profoundly against what sturdy Protestant Englishmen understood the Church of England had been about for the past 300 years.

Many of their practices were undoubtedly illegal. There was frequent litigation to determine which ones were illegal and which weren't. They would not obey their bishops when they were told to stop. Although claiming to be doing this in the name of a more Catholic understanding of praxis, they insisted on a very Protestant interpretation of conscience, or at least so far as it concerned their consciences rather than anyone else's.

In those days, once inducted, a CofE clergyman was not restrained by having to work with their PCC. Many of them took a conscious pride in introducing their practices even though they knew what they were doing was deeply offensive to many of their flock, and often to their bishop. They 'knew best' and were not reticent in saying so. One can tell that some took a delight in getting up their bishop's nose.

It's where the idea comes from that one can often see reflected in these threads, particularly on the Ecclesiantics board, that 'our little group' knows how to do liturgy properly and nobody else does, and likewise, the sense that minor matters of detail really really matter.

So the concept that a self-identifying group of spiritual shock troops being energetic for the house of the Lord, but putting a lot of peoples' backs up, probably unnecessarily, at the same time, is nothing new.

They did much good work, particularly in slum parishes, but even there, they were not the first in the way that Anglo-Catholic history likes to tell us. Some years ago there was an episode of Who do you think you are? where a well known actress (but I can't remember who) found that one of her ancestors had been a formidably active and admired London slum parson in the early C19, a generation before the Oxford Movement.

And were the dockers and coal heavers of London's east end really all that interested in whether the sacrament was reserved, how many candles there were on the altar, or where the celebrant stood when consecrating the elements, rather than that here were people who were interested in them and prepared to sweat for them?

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ExclamationMark
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
I've yet to o see a great deal of evidence that these things are channeling people into existing churches, they mostly seem to attract existing Christians who think they're being cool, trendy and radical.

There isn't any evidence because they aren't doing it. As you rightly say, it's simply a matter of reorganisation - attracting people who think its cool and trendy.

Who wants to hear about a guy dying who asks you to do the same?

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Gamaliel
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Sure, which is one reason I feel increasingly estranged from that side of things ...

But then, there are different problems in different quarters ...

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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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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by Captain Smith:
The church was financially viable for a number of years prior to the HTB plant in 2013, not least because of venue hire which was mainly for rehearsals and concerts thereby fulfilling its mission to musicians. The diocese was therefore sufficiently confident to grant funds to reorder the east end, replace the heating system and provide humane toilet facilities amongst other things.

By 2013 the makeup of the PCC strongly reflected the stakeholders in the parish: the parish clerk and lay chair were both bellringers and roughly half of the membership were musicians, mainly members of the church choir.

Rev Ingall wrote to the PCC after his licensing (which none of the PCC or congregation had been invited to attend) saying that he didn't see any incompatibility between his ministry and the existing activities, i.e. mainly concerts and rehearsals. While the recent letter to hirers is largely framed in terms of practical use of the building that's really a matter of the daytime use: the comparatively large office staff use part of the main body of the church for their work which is mainly to do with administering Alpha courses.

For over three years they've been able to coexist with professional ensembles rehearsing on weekdays but for some reason they no longer can. There are spaces in the church which could be utilised as office space but for some reason those spaces can't be reconfigured even though the income from retaining the hire business would pay for the work. As for evening hires, the last accounts deposited with the Charity Commission don't indicate plans to increase Alpha and/or other courses to the extent that they'd cut across the existing hire programme.

The sudden change in policy suggests the decision was made for something other than purely practical reasons. While the PCC and incumbent naturally have discretion to make such decisions they are only temporary custodians of the building and have a responsibility to be honest with their stakeholders who extend beyond the immediate worship community. I don't think their public statements to date have fulfilled that obligation.

Captain Smith, that's interesting. Are you recounting this from personal knowledge or hearsay?

Unless the diocese of London is vastly different from everyone else, it's unusual these days for either a bishop or a patron to impose an incumbent without involving the PCC through nominated selectors. I've also never heard of a licensing in which the parish isn't closely involved.


Most of my experience is local to here, but I know of a parish in the Oxford diocese a few years ago where the patron was an ecclesiastical party organisation. The parish selectors put their foot down. After their first refusal of a 'party' appointment, they basically said they'd been so impressed with what the curate had been doing during the vacancy, that if the patron tried to appoint anyone else, they'd go on refusing until the patron backed down and appointed their curate. The patron did have the sense to back down. The man in question went on to have many years of successful ministry there.

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Bishops Finger
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Yes, I thought it seemed odd that PCC and congregation weren't invited to the licensing. Might that be simply because it was taken as read that they all had a perfect right to be there, and therefore didn't require a formal invitation?

Speculation is, perhaps, and certainly in this case, pointless. And TPTB have intimated as much, albeit more obliquely.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Albertus
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Whatever the rights and wrongs of the music question, I still don't understand why anyone would want to bother planting into a City church with a tiny resident population, in an area that is not exactly under-churched.
Can anyone shed light on the thinking behind this? I thought plants were meant to be about reviving ministry and worship in areas where there were, or might be supposed to be, large numbers of unchurched people in need of the Gospel.

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Angloid
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Because it's in Zone 1, natch!
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Augustine the Aleut
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quote:
Originally posted by Angloid:
Because it's in Zone 1, natch!

which is?????
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ExclamationMark
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quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
quote:
Originally posted by Angloid:
Because it's in Zone 1, natch!

which is?????
Closer to the city than zone 2?
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Curiosity killed ...

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London Underground zones - Zone 1 is the City and West End - HTB is in Zone 1, Whitechapel and Bethnal Green are in Zone 2, just.

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Baptist Trainfan
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But - from the above - it seems that they still want to build a commuting congregation (?thus depriving other churches of possible congregants).
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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Yes, I thought it seemed odd that PCC and congregation weren't invited to the licensing. Might that be simply because it was taken as read that they all had a perfect right to be there, and therefore didn't require a formal invitation?

Speculation is, perhaps, and certainly in this case, pointless. And TPTB have intimated as much, albeit more obliquely.

IJ

I hope nothing horrible is happening/has happened.

My own cynical speculation on first hearing this story and based on doing a concert in St Sepulchre's last November at which the grand piano nearly fell apart was that they were trying to find a way out of the enormous expense of fixing the piano (or buying a new one) given that it would be a prerequisite for hirings.

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Spike

Mostly Harmless
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:

Unless the diocese of London is vastly different from everyone else, it's unusual these days for either a bishop or a patron to impose an incumbent without involving the PCC through nominated selectors. I've also never heard of a licensing in which the parish isn't closely involved.

Yes, but HTB appear to almost see themselves as a completely separate denomination outside the normal rules and structures of the Church of England.

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"May you get to heaven before the devil knows you're dead" - Irish blessing

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Angloid
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# 159

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quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
quote:
Originally posted by Angloid:
Because it's in Zone 1, natch!

which is?????
Sorry... I was (quite wrongly and arrogantly anglo-centrically) assuming that people would be up to speed with Bishop Philip North's recent comments: "[The church-planting movement must] put the poor first rather than last . . . HTB, New Wine and many dioceses and denominations are developing church-planting strategies. But too many are aimed at the low-hanging fruit in fast-regenerating urban areas or university towns. I am astonished at the number of people Jesus is calling to plant new churches as long as they are in Zones 1 and 2 of the London transport system."
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Baptist Trainfan
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True in other towns and cities too, and in other denominations and church groupings. Well said, Bishop North.
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Bishops Finger
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Well, I wish Jesus would leave Zones 1 and 2 aside, and inspire someone (not HTB) to 'Come over into Macedonia, and help us'....

We're not in Zones 1 or 2, but in one of the poorest parishes in the country - and the harvest is plentiful, though not by any means low-growing!

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Angloid
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# 159

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The trouble with low-growing fruit is that dogs p*** on it!
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Anselmina
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quote:
Originally posted by Spike:
quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:

Unless the diocese of London is vastly different from everyone else, it's unusual these days for either a bishop or a patron to impose an incumbent without involving the PCC through nominated selectors. I've also never heard of a licensing in which the parish isn't closely involved.

Yes, but HTB appear to almost see themselves as a completely separate denomination outside the normal rules and structures of the Church of England.
My CofE years are some time ago. But is there a custom of a bishop's appointment being permitted when a parish fails to appoint? Though I would've thought a parish of this sort would have wide and wonderful field to choose from, and no chance of failure to appoint through the usual channels.

Failures to appoint mainly seem to happen in a 'hard-to-sell' parish - or somewhere with serious past or potential 'difficulties'. But I don't know how, if at all, this operates in the CofE.

And even with a bishop's appointment, doesn't the invitation to the licensing issue from 'The Pcc and Parish of Wherever it is', anyway? Or from whoever the church governing body is?

It all sounds very complicated at St Sepulchre's! I hope they can resolve things productively to satisfy as many parties as possible. What a shame - and terrible witness - it would be if it all went tits up (so to speak!).

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Higgs Bosun
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# 16582

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quote:
Originally posted by Anselmina:
My CofE years are some time ago. But is there a custom of a bishop's appointment being permitted when a parish fails to appoint? Though I would've thought a parish of this sort would have wide and wonderful field to choose from, and no chance of failure to appoint through the usual channels.

Failures to appoint mainly seem to happen in a 'hard-to-sell' parish - or somewhere with serious past or potential 'difficulties'. But I don't know how, if at all, this operates in the CofE.

I did a bit of poking around. This is nearly right.

Normally, the patron of the parish 'presents' someone to have the tenure of the benefice. Both the Bishop and the Parish Representatives, two people elected by the PCC, can refuse such a candidate.

If no acceptable candidate is presented within 9 months of the benefice falling vacant, then the right of presentation moves to the archbishop of the province.

However, responsibility for the benefice remains with the bishop, who can appoint a priest-in-charge. It seems that this should normally be close to the normal procedure, with the PCC and patron at least consulted.

I think that a significant change in circumstances is one case when even an agreed person is appointed as priest-in-charge. One reason for this is that the bishop can withdraw the licence relatively easily. Shifting the incumbent with tenure if things have not gone well is harder.

quote:
And even with a bishop's appointment, doesn't the invitation to the licensing issue from 'The Pcc and Parish of Wherever it is', anyway? Or from whoever the church governing body is?

Indeed. Firstly it is the bishop's responsibility to inform the churchwardens (who are the bishops officers in the parish) and PCC of his intention to license the individual. I would think it would be invalid for this to take place without the presence of at least the church wardens.

When I have received invitations to the installation of a new parish priest, it has been from, I think, "The Churchwardens and PCC of the Parish of X".

I do not think that there is any evidence in this that HTB have been acting "outside the normal rules and structures of the Church of England", unlike some others...

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pete173
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Partly right. Though now a Priest in Charge has as much security as an Incumbent under Common Tenure, so that bit isn't really accurate.

The appointment at St Sep's was done by +Richard as a way of revitalising the parish.

Robust discussions continue.

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Pete

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Captain Smith
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
Captain Smith, that's interesting. Are you recounting this from personal knowledge or hearsay?

Unless the diocese of London is vastly different from everyone else, it's unusual these days for either a bishop or a patron to impose an incumbent without involving the PCC through nominated selectors. I've also never heard of a licensing in which the parish isn't closely involved.

I'm there all the time, I'm buried under the South Aisle so I don't miss much.

The parish was in interregnum at the time of the plant but, as I stated earlier, financially viable. With the support of the diocese it was working on a proposal to further its mission to musicians with the involvement an honorary chaplain in view of the general lack of priests.

Out of the blue the Archdeacon wrote to the PCC a few days before the 2013 APCM to scrap that approach by introducing Rev Ingall who was at the time a spare curate at the HTB mothership, rather in need of a job. It was purely an imposition from the diocese: the patrons were not consulted and regardless of what feelings they might have had about HTB they weren't happy about the process.

The PCC conducted a constructive dialogue with Rev Ingall so they were content with him as a candidate, but were unhappy that process wasn't being followed and so challenged the diocese. This led to the diocese working around the PCC by licensing Rev Ingall in private: the PCC were not informed when the ceremony was happening and thus were denied the opportunity to attend.

The first the PCC knew about the appointment was an announcement on Twitter followed by a letter from the newly appointed Priest in Charge. The Bishop brushed the PCC's subsequent complaint about the diocese's actions with the breezy observation that 'no process is perfect'. It's looking very much as though that casual attitude has returned to bite the Church.

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ExclamationMark
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# 14715

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quote:
Originally posted by Captain Smith:
The parish was in interregnum at the time of the plant but, as I stated earlier, financially viable. With the support of the diocese it was working on a proposal to further its mission to musicians with the involvement an honorary chaplain in view of the general lack of priests.

Out of the blue the Archdeacon wrote to the PCC a few days before the 2013 APCM to scrap that approach by introducing Rev Ingall who was at the time a spare curate at the HTB mothership, rather in need of a job. It was purely an imposition from the diocese: the patrons were not consulted and regardless of what feelings they might have had about HTB they weren't happy about the process.

The PCC conducted a constructive dialogue with Rev Ingall so they were content with him as a candidate, but were unhappy that process wasn't being followed and so challenged the diocese. This led to the diocese working around the PCC by licensing Rev Ingall in private: the PCC were not informed when the ceremony was happening and thus were denied the opportunity to attend.

The first the PCC knew about the appointment was an announcement on Twitter followed by a letter from the newly appointed Priest in Charge. The Bishop brushed the PCC's subsequent complaint about the diocese's actions with the breezy observation that 'no process is perfect'. It's looking very much as though that casual attitude has returned to bite the Church.

Hmmmm there seem to be quite a few strands to this story which are now unfolding (I'm assuming all we are hearing and reading is true).

Looking at the accounts, the parish was viable but only with the restricted funding for the music ministry and with concert/other income. On giving alone the church budget didn't balance - strange then that the powers that be (Archdeacon and/or Bishop) didn't play to the church's strength and history but sought to take things off in a very new direction which carried the danger of the explosion we're now seeing.

A strange decision given the nature of London church going and the presence of other HTB type churches nearby.

I must admit I'm feeling more sympathetic with the Rector now and less keen on those who made the decision to appoint. Not only have they seemingly taken steps to move the church in a certain way (and goodness only knows why the Bishop threw his lot in with it), they have abused process to accommodate it - if what Capt. Smith says is true.

Capt. Smith does seem to know an awful lot about what went/is going on .... can we distinguish, fact, interpretation of fact and fiction of fact here?

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Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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Had I been Rev. Ingall, I wouldn't have touched the job. But then I work in a tradition where congregational involvement is fundamental.
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Helen-Eva
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# 15025

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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Had I been Rev. Ingall, I wouldn't have touched the job. But then I work in a tradition where congregational involvement is fundamental.

I expect Rev Ingall felt God was calling him and he needed to take on this role no matter how hard it might be. I'm sure everyone involved is doing what they think is for the best - it's just that they don't agree on what that is. *Sigh*

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I thought the radio 3 announcer said "Weber" but it turned out to be Webern. Story of my life.

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Bishops Finger
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# 5430

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Well, as pete173 says, robust discussions continue (and he of all people should know).

Hopefully, the musicians' concerns will be sorted out satisfactorily, and the congregation will continue to flourish.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Baptist Trainfan
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We will await!
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SvitlanaV2
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# 16967

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quote:
Originally posted by ExclamationMark:


Looking at the accounts, the parish was viable but only with the restricted funding for the music ministry and with concert/other income. On giving alone the church budget didn't balance.

But that's not normally a problem in the CofE, is it? There must be a lot of small CofE congregations that can't support their building or mission primarily out of their own pockets. The denomination seems to deal with that in most cases.

Some churches have a strong evangelistic impact, or are willing and able to reorganise themselves on less expensive lines. But for many ordinary congregations it's highly sensible for them to look to maximise the income they receive from outside sources. As congregations age and decline that's a strategy for survival.

I suppose London is different, though. I don't know anything about this particular situation, but ISTM that churchy people (or maybe it's just the bishops?) down there might see the lively, growing congregations in the vicinity and want a bit of that action. Just pulling in the rent, serving the community and keeping things chugging along doesn't cut it.

[ 29. August 2017, 12:49: Message edited by: SvitlanaV2 ]

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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by SvitlanaV2:
Just pulling in the rent, serving the community and keeping things chugging along

Sounds like the quintessence of Anglicanism to me tbh.

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I thought the radio 3 announcer said "Weber" but it turned out to be Webern. Story of my life.

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Bishops Finger
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Yes, that's Our Place - with the not unimportant addition of sacrificial giving from our (small) congregation, not all of whom are 'waged'. The same applies in many other small parishes, too, I guess.

BTW, perhaps 'celebrating the Sacraments' might be a better phrase than 'just chugging along'.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Yes, that's Our Place - with the not unimportant addition of sacrificial giving from our (small) congregation, not all of whom are 'waged'. The same applies in many other small parishes, too, I guess.

BTW, perhaps 'celebrating the Sacraments' might be a better phrase than 'just chugging along'.

IJ

I thought the vague implication of steam engines had a nice Anglican flavour actually. How about "chugging along celebrating the Sacraments" as a compromise?

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I thought the radio 3 announcer said "Weber" but it turned out to be Webern. Story of my life.

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Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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I thought it was only the Vatican which had white smoke coming out of the chimney (and only once every few years ...).
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Bishops Finger
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Well yes - and some posters here would have us believe that the C of E is rapidly running out of steam, anyway!

Sometimes, indeed, I do feel that we are chugging along, but I think the celebration of the Sacraments, whilst so chugging, is vitally important. Apart from anything else, it's what Our Lord commanded us to do. No disrespect to HTB and their like, but they do sometimes appear to be selling a 'feel-good' religion that doesn't have much to do with real life in the backstreets or rural wastes..

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Higgs Bosun
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# 16582

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quote:
Originally posted by ExclamationMark:

A strange decision given the nature of London church going and the presence of other HTB type churches nearby.

I must admit I'm feeling more sympathetic with the Rector now and less keen on those who made the decision to appoint. Not only have they seemingly taken steps to move the church in a certain way (and goodness only knows why the Bishop threw his lot in with it), they have abused process to accommodate it - if what Capt. Smith says is true.

You refer to 'those who made the decision to appoint' and the "bishop who threw his lot in with it". Surely the bishop must have been one of the "those"? HTB, being in the Kensington Area, has no particular leverage on the Archdeacon for the Two Cities Area.

It is not the case there are many other HTB type churches nearby. It so happens that I have recently done a small research project for which I needed to crudely classify parishes in the London Diocese. St Sepulchre's is the only "charismatic" (note quotes) parish in the City Deanery, and there are only three others in the whole of the Two Cities area. St George's Holborn, involved with the plant to St Sepulchre's, is, I think, the nearest church of that type to St Sepulchre's. It is over a mile away, and in the opposite direction to the City of London.

I imagine that the vision for the plant is to have a centre for Alpha readily accessible to those working in the City. Thus the issue with weekday use of the building.

The type of church which is spreading in the City is that of the Conservative Evangelicals. They have their mother ship of St Helen's Bishopsgate, of course.

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pete173
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quote:
Originally posted by Higgs Bosun:
[QUOTE]You refer to 'those who made the decision to appoint' and the "bishop who threw his lot in with it". Surely the bishop must have been one of the "those"? HTB, being in the Kensington Area, has no particular leverage on the Archdeacon for the Two Cities Area.

It is not the case there are many other HTB type churches nearby. It so happens that I have recently done a small research project for which I needed to crudely classify parishes in the London Diocese. St Sepulchre's is the only "charismatic" (note quotes) parish in the City Deanery, and there are only three others in the whole of the Two Cities area. St George's Holborn, involved with the plant to St Sepulchre's, is, I think, the nearest church of that type to St Sepulchre's. It is over a mile away, and in the opposite direction to the City of London.

I imagine that the vision for the plant is to have a centre for Alpha readily accessible to those working in the City. Thus the issue with weekday use of the building.

The type of church which is spreading in the City is that of the Conservative Evangelicals. They have their mother ship of St Helen's Bishopsgate, of course.

Yes, that's right. It was a conscious strategic decision to try an HTB Plant in the City Deanery. Bishop Richard has always been committed to ecclesial bio-diversity. We have plants from Bishopsgate and S Martin in the Fields in the City. This was the first one from HTB.

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Pete

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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by Higgs Bosun:


I imagine that the vision for the plant is to have a centre for Alpha readily accessible to those working in the City. Thus the issue with weekday use of the building.

The type of church which is spreading in the City is that of the Conservative Evangelicals. They have their mother ship of St Helen's Bishopsgate, of course.

*tangent alert*

What is the difference between HTB and conservative evangelical at St Helen's Bishopsgate? I thought they were quite similar?

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I thought the radio 3 announcer said "Weber" but it turned out to be Webern. Story of my life.

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