The first is by Al Mohler on the Church of England's decision to open its episcopate to women. Sound of nail being hit on head here:
This is the kind of “compromise” that pervades mainline liberal Protestantism. It shifts the church decisively to the left and calls for mutual respect. Conservatives are to be kindly shown the door. Ruth Gledhill of The Guardian [London], one of the most insightful observers of religion in Great Britain, recognized the plight of the evangelicals, though she celebrated the vote: “In the last 69 episcopal appointments, there have been evangelicals but not a single conservative one.” In this context, “conservative” means more concerned with doctrinal matters and opposed to a change in the church’s teachings on gender and human sexuality. But, as Gledhill recognized, “This wing of the church is where so much of the energy is, giving rise not just to growth, but also that necessary resource, cash.”
Yes, there is another pattern to recognize — evangelicals have the growth and the cash, just not the votes. The talk about mutual flourishing is really an argument to remain in the church and keep paying the bills.
Ruth Gledhill is profoundly right about another aspect of Monday’s vote as well. It won’t stop with women bishops. “Now the church can move into the 20th century, although perhaps not the 21st,” she wrote. “A change on gay marriage would be needed to do that.” Well, stay tuned, as they say. The same church now has bishops living and teaching in open defiance of the church’s law on sexuality as well.
There is a very real sense in which Monday’s vote was inevitable. Once the church had decided to ordain women as priests, the elevation of women to bishop was only a matter of time. But the Church of England explicitly claims apostolic succession back to the earliest years of the church, traced through bishops. That is why virtually every major media outlet in Britain acknowledged, at least, that the vote reversed 2,000 years of Christian tradition. They also tended to note that the vote came after 20 years of controversy.
Evidently, 2,000 of years of tradition was no match for 20 years of controversy.
The second article is one from Carl Trueman on Reformed theology for a church in exile. I discern a bit of synchronicity in the way these two articles appeared almost at the same time. When I read them, they make me almost wish orthodox Presbyterian churches would create their own Anglican Ordinariates.
Almost. I intend to die an Anglican, but I agree with Trueman's article and its applicability to the future of Anglicanism, if it is to have much of one. At ACNA's first Inaugural Assemby in 2009, then-OCA Metropolitan Jonah Paffhausen addressed the crowd in an ecumenical capacity. Jonah had a number of recommendations for the new church, all of which predictably amounted to "become Orthodox." A principal recommendation, pontificated Jonah: lose your Calvinism and your other "Reformation heresies." No surprises there, but I think our own particular, historical brand of "Calvinism" is exactly what we need to find, or exile may be the least of our worries.