Rev. Charles Alley Spells Out What The Communion Partner Strategy Means

Read it all. Here is an excerpt:

Some conservative voices do not see as their vocation the reformation of TEC. Rather, the call is recognized as to stand as a witness to the truth in the midst of the theological chaos. They are called simply to be the Church and provide an alternative model of doing church within TEC. In this way these parishes can provide a witness to what the Church is meant to be so that TEC might have the opportunity to see what it has become.

So, the new inside strategy is no longer reformation of TEC, but to remain as a witness. A witness to what and to whom? A witness of Christ to folks who have abandoned the faith? So that “TEc might have the opportunity to see what it has become?” Comon’ they know what they are becoming.

With all due respect to Father Alley, this is all starting to seem like a big waste of time, a grasping at straws to find a reason not to leave the Episcopal Church and thereby hold onto buildings and pension funds. Now, I am being a bit harsh to Fr. Alley, here, inasmuch as understand that church is supposed to be a safe place in the world and not another war zone in the culture wars. But, we didn’t turn the church into a cultural war zone – they did – and staying in TEC is staying in the war zone.

Moreover, the Common Cause Partnership is not going to respect the position of the Communion Partners movement for selling out the goal of reforming TEC. As I read Fr. Alley’s statement, he’s essentially telling conservatives like me that, well, TEC is unreformable, but we aren’t going to do anything about it. We’re just going to go about being the church in TEC as much as we can. This is the new “inside strategy.” The problem is that this isn’t a strategy; it is a capitulation.

I think the Communion Partner rectors need to go back to the drawing board, aka, doing everything they can to get TEC reformed or disciplined by the Communion. I can understand not wanting to leave TEC until a new Anglican Province is sanctioned by the Anglican Communion. But to say you aren’t leaving TEC if a new one is formed and sanctioned, well, you’ve lost me there.

14 Responses to “Rev. Charles Alley Spells Out What The Communion Partner Strategy Means”

  1. 1 David+ November 29, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    It has been nearly 40 years since my ordination. And all I can say is that I have watched a slow but steady march away from our foundations until 2003 when General Convention finally admitted where TEc now stands, so to speak. And that will not be reversed by a few well meaning bishops and rectors. There’s no going back for TEC. Another way of saying it will not reform itself. And the end result is what we are seeing now: a stready decline. Pull up a plant by its roots and it slowly withers and dies. So will TEC. An unholy spirit has taken control of the Episcopal Church and it will not be satisfied until it has replaced all the Orthodox Anglicans with revisionist bisops and clergy.

  2. 2 Rt. Revd. Stonewall Shelton, F. C. J. November 29, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    Greetings to all in Jesus.
    Right now is not the time to be arguing with which group is right.

    There is an unholy terror that has taken over ECUSA.

    This occured when the liberals took over the church in force in the 1970s. This event opened the door for seed of darkness to creep in and take over the ECUSA.

    As the proverbial Titanic the ship of ECUSA is already gone down to the bottom of the Atlantic. There is no use trying to raise the ship. There are still conservatives who are trying to remain as a witness
    for the church such as taking a cup and throwing water over board when the ship has already sunk to the bottom.

    They aren’t staying to be a witness, they are staying for their own selfish reasons.

    God would not tell any orthodox conservative to stay with a dead ship that has already gone down. God would not want that person to stay as a witness. Its already to far gone to the bottom of the ocean to be brought back.

    As I said, its not a time to argue which side is right.

    The time to get out of ECUSA is now. No ifs, ands or butts. The time to go and get out of the unholy church is now.

  3. 3 Alice C. Linsley November 29, 2008 at 6:46 pm

    In this conversation there seems to be little concern with the Christian’s adoration of the Triune God expressed in worship, love, service and obedience. The single remaining question is whether or not a Christian can remain in TEC and fulfill this calling?

  4. 4 Allen Lewis November 29, 2008 at 11:36 pm

    “The single remaining question is whether or not a Christian can remain in TEC and fulfill this calling?”

    From where I stand my answer to that question would be, “No, it is not possible wihtin the context of what TEC has become.”

  5. 5 Grandpa Dino November 30, 2008 at 2:02 am

    Q: “The single remaining question is whether or not a Christian can remain in TEC and fulfill this calling?”

    A: “Not”

  6. 6 Sarah November 30, 2008 at 3:16 am

    RE: “The single remaining question is whether or not a Christian can remain in TEC and fulfill this calling [adoration of the Triune God expressed in worship, love, service and obedience].”


    People can adore the Triune God through worship, love, service, and obedience in solitary confinement in a gulag.

    So I’m not certain why on earth a Christian couldn’t do the same in TEC.

    Granted — I understand why a Christian might not *wish* to . . . but not how a Christian “cannot” do so.

  7. 7 Rob Eaton+ November 30, 2008 at 9:51 am

    Dear Alice (and followers):
    Might I quote Origen? I know he gets a bad rap in some areas of thought, and by some teachers later, but there is a section from his “Commentary on 1 Corinthians (1.4)” wherein he says,

    “The visible church is a mixed body, consisting of both righteous and unrighteous people. This is why Paul praises some of its members and criticizes others. The person who agrees with the right doctrine and the church’s teaching concerning the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, as well as with the dispensation concerning us, with resurrection and judgment, and who follows the rules of the church is not in schism.”

    Besides the realization that the “rules of the church” currently are not the vexing issue (but rather those who abuse the rules), it is the vision of the larger visible church that gives me some comfort in the Lord’s direct calling to me to be a priest in TECUSA.

    Hope, in Christ Jesus,

  8. 8 R. Scott Purdy November 30, 2008 at 1:22 pm

    When called to missionary witness to anamists, members of the “church” of Scientology, Unitatian Universalists, or any other philosophy, the Christian missionary does not join with and into that philosophy.
    What differentiates TE”c” such that a Christian can rationalize joining with and into it?

  9. 9 Scott December 1, 2008 at 11:01 am

    I can see a small bit of logic in the statement. Albeit only a small bit. If you can stay in your building and still witness, the Gospel, I understand the desire to stay. Do not do any repairs, do not do any capital improvements. In short take out all the dead peoples money you can and use it to spread the Gospel.

    When you retire or die the revisionist bishops will replace you with one of their own. To loosely quote a money planner I heard on the radio. The idea is to spend all you money leaving a check for your funeral, and it should bounce.

  10. 10 CryptoCatholic December 1, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    “The idea is to spend all you money leaving a check for your funeral, and it should bounce.”

    I agree about not doing any capital improvements, and, I would add, getting the major donors to form a separate nonprofit on their own, to support the parish and other forms of mission. It would have to be a bona fide, arm’s length operation, I think, in order to escape the rapacity of TEO, but Brad would know much better than I.

    But not doing repairs? Even fixing the roof?

    In my old parish, I raised the issue with one of my friends who was spending her retirement refinishing the Rectory floors. She replied “What they do with it is between them and God. I’m going to hand it on in the condition in which it was entrusted to me.”


    Phil Hobbs

  11. 11 Bob Maxwell+ December 1, 2008 at 9:13 pm

    It is easy to worship the Triune God in the Gulag. There is never a doubt that this is costly worship from in the midst of cruel evil even at the cost of one’s physical life. One knows the Way, the Truth and the Life is the focus.

    To cover the Gulag with TEC does not change the fact that TEC embodies the cruel evil that is leading men and women to horrible physical ends via homosexual behavior and to eternal hell by pointing to other ways to god instead of to the Way, the Truth and the Life. A true story:

    A certain rector spent seven years increasing the ASA of his orthodox parish while throughout the city and the diocese TEC was becoming known as an inclusive religion permitting same sex relationships and was without any Trinitarian belief requirements. One day following his congregation reaching a steady 500 ASA he said to himself, “Now is the time to purchase a new site with 13 acres and build a wonderful campus for God.” So, he did. He located the very best land and raised the money. They built a building that was a 42,000sq’ traditional stone gothic facility. All this taxed his physical energy and battling the heresy in TEC around him sapped his spiritual vitality. Again his bishop and TEC proclaimed that the inclusive evil behavior killing men women and the killing of unborn infants was not evil and the PB and HoB chose not to stand for the uniqueness of Jesus Christ as the Way, the truth and the life. Asleep or awake he could not forget the words, “One day you will be gone and then whose teaching will fill these buildings? What does it gain a man to build a 1000 ASA Parish under the banner of a group that is leading people to death and the loss of their souls?”

    And so the rector and several hundred left absolutely everything behind and returned to the Anglican Communion that had not been in communion with his diocese since 2003.

    Rob, that is the dilemma of CP rectors and laity. You cannot serve both God and ___________ .

  12. 12 Sarah December 2, 2008 at 2:23 pm

    RE: “and returned to the Anglican Communion that had not been in communion with his diocese since 2003.”

    You mean, I assume, “returned to communion with a number of his favorite provinces of the Anglican Communion with which his diocese had not been in communion since 2003.”

  13. 13 Rob Eaton+ December 2, 2008 at 10:51 pm

    I am a CP Rector. As of yet, there is not an echelon that can be described as CP laity. There are CP Bishops. There are no CP dioceses, despite the reports that try to count laity.

    As to the rest of your comments, I think you are contradicting yourself.

  1. 1 NEUTRAL CORNERS | Midwest Conservative Journal Trackback on November 29, 2008 at 8:31 pm

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