Thread: Canon law and high church Liturgy (c of e) Board: Oblivion / Ship of Fools.


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Posted by Indifferently (# 17517) on :
 
Quite a lot of the ceremonial in use in Anglo Catholic parishes is very interesting in that it reflects the sort of thing which only officially went into the Roman liturgy beyond 1570 and so did not really have a precedent before the 19th century in England.

Is it legal under Canon law to elevate the elements at consecration? Is it legal to hold up the consecrated bread and say 'Behold the Lamb of God!'? I don't mind much in the Anglo Catholic liturgy except on matters of taste, but directly implying not just the Real Presence but actual Transubstantiation is clearly problematic theologically.

Similarly, Mass Intentions seem to imply not merely Eucharistic sacrifice as one with the cross (not problematic) but that each sacrifice is a discrete offering for the quick and the dead.

I realize this is widely tolerated, but what is the Church of England's official position on it?
 
Posted by Triple Tiara (# 9556) on :
 
My understanding is that things may come in differently, but they are judged on whether they edify or not. Canon Law - like the ship's 10 commandments - get ignored. But customs eddy to and fro and are thus observed.
 
Posted by Mr. Rob (# 5823) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Indifferently:


" ... but directly implying not just the Real Presence but actual Transubstantiation is clearly problematic theologically. ... Similarly, Mass Intentions seem to imply not merely Eucharistic sacrifice as one with the cross (not problematic) but that each sacrifice is a discrete offering for the quick and the dead."

"I realize this is widely tolerated, but what is the Church of England's official position on it?"


Well you have ask the Church of England, and good luck to you with that. No one here can give you "the official opinion" because the CofE is a comprehensive body that encompasses various points of view. Therefore there is no magesterial teaching to which you may look for an answer.

You will find many in the CofE who act as if their opinions have magesterial or doctrinal force, but if you know Anglicanism well enough, then you know that absurdity of giving credence to that approach. You will hear one thing about the "official position" one place, and perhaps quite another some place else.

Now I happen to think that's a strength of the CofE, while many don't. Depends on your point of view old chap.

*.
 
Posted by Indifferently (# 17517) on :
 
I wasn't asking for the Magisterial position (I take that to be the rubrics of the 1662 Prayer Book, which clearly does not promote these practises) I was merely wondering what the church Canons say about these matters.
 
Posted by Oferyas (# 14031) on :
 
The simple answer to the question 'what do the church canons say about these things' is - nothing whatever. They are not directly mentioned in the 1968 Canons or any subsequent amendments.
 
Posted by Augustine the Aleut (# 1472) on :
 
I believe that the canons of the Church of Ireland have a non-elevation provision, but I don't have the text at hand.
 
Posted by Augustine the Aleut (# 1472) on :
 
*Irish church tangent alert* Text is now at hand. CoI Canon 13: (4) The elevation of the paten or chalice beyond what is necessary for taking the same into the hands of the officiating member of the clergy, and the ringing of bells during the time of the service, shall not be permitted.

AFAIK, this provision is singular to the Church of Ireland.
 
Posted by Oferyas (# 14031) on :
 
Fascinating to read the Irish Church Canons. I'm not aware of any other province with such detailed prohibitions, effectively rescinding many liberties provided for in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer.
 
Posted by Augustine the Aleut (# 1472) on :
 
The Irish church canons were largely revised after disestablishment (1870, IIRC) and responded to what they believed was the theological and likely moral corruption of the Oxford movement and the ensuing rise of ritualism. As well, there was a general belief among CoI members that they needed to reinforce their protestant credentials in an RC-majority Ireland. They were crystallizing in law the overwhelming sentiment of Anglicanism at the time. There was a call for similar canon law revisions in England at the time, but the complexity of canon law change and the reluctance of governments of the period to devote parliamentary business time to the subject let the call go unheeded.

Canon law freaks will likely note that they show what it looks like when civil lawyers write canon law.
 
Posted by Indifferently (# 17517) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
The Irish church canons were largely revised after disestablishment (1870, IIRC) and responded to what they believed was the theological and likely moral corruption of the Oxford movement and the ensuing rise of ritualism. As well, there was a general belief among CoI members that they needed to reinforce their protestant credentials in an RC-majority Ireland. They were crystallizing in law the overwhelming sentiment of Anglicanism at the time. There was a call for similar canon law revisions in England at the time, but the complexity of canon law change and the reluctance of governments of the period to devote parliamentary business time to the subject let the call go unheeded.

Canon law freaks will likely note that they show what it looks like when civil lawyers write canon law.

Ritualist practises are banned in England in the late 19th Century. However the law was ignored. Fr Tooth was treated rather badly over it.
 
Posted by Lietuvos Sv. Kazimieras (# 11274) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
*Irish church tangent alert* Text is now at hand. CoI Canon 13: (4) The elevation of the paten or chalice beyond what is necessary for taking the same into the hands of the officiating member of the clergy, and the ringing of bells during the time of the service, shall not be permitted.

AFAIK, this provision is singular to the Church of Ireland.

But there are a few Anglo-Catholic or at least High Church shacks in Ireland. Do they follow this canon, or do their local Ordinaries allow them some liberty in these ceremonies?
 
Posted by Fr Weber (# 13472) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Indifferently:
Quite a lot of the ceremonial in use in Anglo Catholic parishes is very interesting in that it reflects the sort of thing which only officially went into the Roman liturgy beyond 1570 and so did not really have a precedent before the 19th century in England.

Is it legal under Canon law to elevate the elements at consecration?

In point of fact, this practice began in Paris c. AD 1200, and spread from there through the rest of Europe. The genuflections were added in 1570.

The elevation at Per ipsum goes back to the ninth century.

This of course has no bearing on the legality of those practices in England, but to imply that they are post-Anglican Rrrrrromish Innovations is misleading.
 
Posted by Augustine the Aleut (# 1472) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Lietuvos Sv. Kazimieras:
quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
*Irish church tangent alert* Text is now at hand. CoI Canon 13: (4) The elevation of the paten or chalice beyond what is necessary for taking the same into the hands of the officiating member of the clergy, and the ringing of bells during the time of the service, shall not be permitted.

AFAIK, this provision is singular to the Church of Ireland.

But there are a few Anglo-Catholic or at least High Church shacks in Ireland. Do they follow this canon, or do their local Ordinaries allow them some liberty in these ceremonies?
There are those whose information is far more current than mine, but John Paterson, then-rector of S Bartholomew's, Clyde Rd, elevated slightly, in a way which would make it difficult for anyone in the congregation to see. I was given to understand that Archbishop Buchanan did not Have Formal Knowledge of this practice. In the 1970s, northending was standard practice in the CoI, but S Barth's, as well as S John's, Sandymount (which had non-parochial status, IIRC), clergy were ad orientem. Parishes were then slowly moving to versus populum, so the eastward canon was quietly being ignored by general agreement-- nobody wanted to get folks excited with a formal canonical change.

Spikery in Ireland was Dearmerite, and for an interesting period, the MOTR parishes with freestanding altars (communion tables) were more likely closer to GIRM than the high church parishes.

As a further tangent, Charles Gray-Stack, late Dean of Kenmare, deprecated the term Anglo-Catholic, believing that Hiberno-Catholic was more appropriate, and one should not look to England for a lead, given the relative youth of the CoE, compared to the ancient Irish church.
 
Posted by Chapelhead (# 21) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
*Irish church tangent alert* Text is now at hand. CoI Canon 13: (4) The elevation of the paten or chalice beyond what is necessary for taking the same into the hands of the officiating member of the clergy, and the ringing of bells during the time of the service, shall not be permitted.

If only that also applied to the paten that holds the collection. Money, it seems may freely be elevated, whatever the rubrics and canons say.
 
Posted by Fr Weber (# 13472) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Chapelhead:
quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
*Irish church tangent alert* Text is now at hand. CoI Canon 13: (4) The elevation of the paten or chalice beyond what is necessary for taking the same into the hands of the officiating member of the clergy, and the ringing of bells during the time of the service, shall not be permitted.

If only that also applied to the paten that holds the collection. Money, it seems may freely be elevated, whatever the rubrics and canons say.
Ah, the Consecration of the Cash! As if any additional proof were needed that people love ceremonies, and in the absence of ceremony will (over time) invent some for themselves.
 
Posted by Arch Anglo Catholic (# 15181) on :
 
What Canon of the Church of England does our esteemed OP consider has been or is being breached?
The current Canons are quite dissimilar from those of 1604!

If we could have some specifics, perhaps they can be addressed with particularity?
 
Posted by dj_ordinaire (# 4643) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Lietuvos Sv. Kazimieras:
quote:
Originally posted by Augustine the Aleut:
*Irish church tangent alert* Text is now at hand. CoI Canon 13: (4) The elevation of the paten or chalice beyond what is necessary for taking the same into the hands of the officiating member of the clergy, and the ringing of bells during the time of the service, shall not be permitted.

AFAIK, this provision is singular to the Church of Ireland.

But there are a few Anglo-Catholic or at least High Church shacks in Ireland. Do they follow this canon, or do their local Ordinaries allow them some liberty in these ceremonies?
I've never seen the use of bells, but I've seen at least one Ordinary performing Elevations in his own cathedral, so I'd say that these rules are not typically enforced...
 
Posted by Augustine the Aleut (# 1472) on :
 
The Irish church, while in possession of persnickety canons, has tended to strongly favour the seemingly-and-in-good-order school of thought. The definition of this has shifted over the years, and I am not surprised that modest elevations are taking place. Surplice & cassock have been giving way to alb & stole, and north-ending by versus populum. As I mentioned above, I'm not up to date on things and almost any other shipmate is more current than I on actual practice.
 
Posted by fletcher christian (# 13919) on :
 
Posted by LSK
quote:

But there are a few Anglo-Catholic or at least High Church shacks in Ireland. Do they follow this canon, or do their local Ordinaries allow them some liberty in these ceremonies?

Generally, no. Neither do they tend to seek the permission of the Bishop for certain practices. It more or less evolves from continued and sustained use, but this is equally true of the evangelical churches too. The canon were produced in a curious climate, where the CofI wanted to define itself in relation to both the Roman Catholic church and the Presbyterians and the canons are often written with these definitions for difference in mind. It has led to some rather curious anomalies: for instance, it is perfectly legal to process with a whopping great icon of the Blessed Virgin Mary at the beginning of the service and still be in good standing with the canons (not that anyone does of course).

From time to time there are quiet little requests about changing the canons, but there is a certain fear that in changing one or two or making adjustments, it might open the flood gates to greater change, possibly for the worse depending on who turns up to synod and can shout the loudest and longest at the podium.The majority of the church is also in the North where sectarianism can still be used among it's members to enforce an unhappy change. However there is a growing realization among the evangelical churches that bringing up the issue of changing the canons may lead to their further enforcement - which would be just as much bad news for them as it would be for any 'high' parish. They're a bit like the 39 articles - historical, of their time, still mainly useful - assent to their presence as a general guide.
 
Posted by Mr. Rob (# 5823) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Indifferently:

I wasn't asking for the Magisterial position (I take that to be the rubrics of the 1662 Prayer Book, which clearly does not promote these practises) I was merely wondering what the church Canons say about these matters.


I can tell you to read the English 1662 BCP and following revisions now in use and current CofE canons, then, if that's what you are looking for. The result is a variety of practice. Surely you know that.

As for TEC, we generally don't have canons related to vesture or ceremonial anymore. That common observance is governed by the fairly comprehensive but not picky rubrics found in the widely accepted TEC 1979 BCP, and the rest at your pleasure from a decent education in the subject to be found in the TEC seminaries. But then we don't have widely differing high-low partisans anymore in TEC. The result is satisfyingly up the candle and sometimes slightly chaotic, but worth the price.

*
 
Posted by Zach82 (# 3208) on :
 
Percy Dearmer's Parson's Handbook manages to squeeze a fantastically Catholic service into the rubrics of the BCP, and is impeccable in strictly obeying the letter of CoE canon law. Long story short- when he actually looked up the canons, it turned out they were never particularly Protestant.
 
Posted by PD (# 12436) on :
 
As I like to say - thus winding up the one Spike in my jurisdiction - the C of E ended up with a Lutheran Liturgy and Reformed Articles. If the rubrics had been followed, the 1559 and 1662 liturgies would have looked very like what was happening in Hamburg at the time, and still happens in large swathes of Sweden and Denmark.

PD
 
Posted by stonespring (# 15530) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Indifferently:

Similarly, Mass Intentions seem to imply not merely Eucharistic sacrifice as one with the cross (not problematic) but that each sacrifice is a discrete offering for the quick and the dead.

Do Mass intentions imply belief that the Sacrifice of the Mass is separate from the Sacrifice of the Cross? I'm inclined to say that in the Eucharistic celebration time breaks down such that the worshipping community participates in the Paschal Sacrifice. Obviously, the way in which this happens is a mystery just like the Trinity and the Incarnation. There is no way to explain it in a way that is completely satisfactory. Therefore, although different Eucharistic celebrations occur at different moments in time (as we perceive it) and are offered for different intentions, they are not in any way repetitions of the Cross or altogether different sacrifices.

[Deleted duplicate post]

[ 31. March 2013, 06:15: Message edited by: seasick ]
 
Posted by PD (# 12436) on :
 
By the way, the Church of Ireland Canons have been revised - in the mid 1970s, IIRC, when Dr. Sims was Primate of All Ireland. Part of the loosening up was the granting of permission for the altar candles to be lit in daylight hours.

I am always a bit nervus about churches that are too into ritual. I have a great fear that it is aesthetics are being used to cover a lack of sound theology. I guess that's because every Anglican revisionist I have ever run into was quite High Church. (Either that or it is a left over of the Hibernian side of the family gene pool)

PD
 
Posted by Indifferently (# 17517) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by PD:

I am always a bit nervus about churches that are too into ritual. I have a great fear that it is aesthetics are being used to cover a lack of sound theology. I guess that's because every Anglican revisionist I have ever run into was quite High Church. (Either that or it is a left over of the Hibernian side of the family gene pool)

PD

I'm of the same view actually. 'Affirming Catholicism' seems to combine the very worst of modern Anglicanism - liberal theology and high church liturgy. (Yes, that is only my view, and I don't mean any disrespect to any Aff Cath types.) I would much rather a low attitude to the ritual and a highly orthodox theology than the other way round.
 
Posted by Arethosemyfeet (# 17047) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by Indifferently:
I'm of the same view actually. 'Affirming Catholicism' seems to combine the very worst of modern Anglicanism - liberal theology and high church liturgy. (Yes, that is only my view, and I don't mean any disrespect to any Aff Cath types.) I would much rather a low attitude to the ritual and a highly orthodox theology than the other way round.

How are you defining liberal here?
 
Posted by Angloid (# 159) on :
 
'Liberal' (except as used by the few self-styled liberals, who are very few and far between in AffCath circles) usually means, 'what I don't like because it challenges my prejudices'
 
Posted by Fr Weber (# 13472) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by PD:


I am always a bit nervus about churches that are too into ritual. I have a great fear that it is aesthetics are being used to cover a lack of sound theology. I guess that's because every Anglican revisionist I have ever run into was quite High Church. (Either that or it is a left over of the Hibernian side of the family gene pool)

PD

Oh, now--you know our lot, and I'd venture to say we're pretty sound.
 


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