“Hier stehe ich.
Ich kann nicht anders.
Gott helfe mir.
(Here I stand.
I can not do otherwise.
God help me.
“Our leaders don’t believe the values of the New Testament take
priority over everything else.”
The Rt Reverend Gavin Ashenden
(the old Methodist Church in Cades Cove, TN / Julie Cook / 2015)
Yesterday I shared a heartening tale about a modern day take on Martin Luther’s
500 year old defiance against an ailing Church.
It appears that these 500 years later on … we are again ailing….
or perhaps we are simply still ailing, never having actually been healed.
I’m not so certain as to which it actually is.
Over the past decade or so, we have witnessed leadership within many mainline
Christian denominations yielding, be it willingly or by duress, to the whims,
nay demands, of a growing egocentric hedonistic society that claims everything
in the name of acceptance and love.
But what society fails to understand is that whereas God is indeed Love,
He is also a God of Order…His Order.
I have watched in frustrating bewilderment,
for more years now than I care to recount, church doctrine and or policy being
twisted and contorted to fit an ever demanding culture’s idea of order.
As society works to claim a new oddly fitting human behavior.
Almost 6000 years have passed since God spoke very specifically to Moses.
He issued a set of “rules” for human orderly living.
God had spoken and literally laid down the law.
Then several millennia past and God saw fit to send a proxy,
a stand in for man…one who was to take man’s place in the inevitable
eternal damnation that man had claimed for himself by imposing his own order while
….That so whomever would believe, would be saved and would have eternal life.
It was straight forward…even simple really.
Yet man insisted on making it complicated.
So while Western Civilization marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation—
as it matters not on which side of the fence you find yourself,
the Reformation is being remembered none the less…
However…me thinks there might be something new brewing about?
As in, might we be witnessing perhaps a new bit of Reformation taking shape?
I for one hope so.
Twice during the course of this past week,
I have found myself both hearing and reading the thoughts and sharings of two
very different men of the cloth concerning this “change in the air”—
Yet neither man has cited any particular change as they are merely working to share
the current state of affairs—the health of each one’s collective church body.
One is a Catholic monk who I’ve mentioned here before…Father Hugh—
who happens to be an ardent keeper of the faith and an Australian monk serving in
a monastery in the UK who is not afraid to speak Gospel truth,
even if that truth runs counter to that of Rome.
The other being a former Anglican priest and Chaplin to the Queen, who now is a
missionary Bishop of The Christian Episcopal Church–a ‘renegade’ break away of
Orthodox Anglican and Episcopal laity and clergy.
Both men have noted that our collective Church leadership has capitulated.
As the leadership has accepted false doctrine as some sort of new doctrine.
A form of “soft socialism” so says Bishop Ashenden.
Father Hugh has shared a letter written by a well respected American Theologian and Capuchin monk, Fr. Thomas Weinandy, regarding the dangerous position Pope Francis
appears to be placing the Catholic faithful.
Bishop Ashenden on the other hand in a recent airing of Anglican Unscripted, also
addresses this dangerous direction the current leadership of the Anglican Church seems
to be taking its flock…
I offer you the links below to Father Hugh’s posts regarding Father Weinandy’s
very public letter to Pope Francis.
It should be noted that since writing and having published his letter to the Pope,
the good Capuchin Father has been asked to resign his post as executive
director of the USCCB’s Secretariat for Doctrine.
Just as I suspect those clergy who have tacked the Southwark Declaration to the doors
of various Anglican Cathedrals or who vocally support the Declaration from their pulpits
will eventually suffer reprimand and or repercussion or something even worse.
Just as I would expect to receive such should I tack the Declaration to any door of
any Episcopal Church here in the states—- I would be accused of hate mongering….
because that’s how we handle those who hold fast to the solemn Word of God—
for if you opt to follow the word of God as stated in the Gospel,
particularly when it concerns same sex unions, you are accused of bigotry and hate….
never mind what God has said about such.
Let us offer our prayers for such brave individuals who are not afraid, despite
common thought and new cultural norms, to share God’s truth…
Here I stand; I can do no other.
L’Affaire Weinandy: A Watershed?
Unless I am convinced by the testimony of the Scriptures and by clear reason
(for I do not trust in the pope or councils alone, since it is well known
that they have often erred and contradicted themselves),
I am bound by the Scriptures I have quoted.
My conscience is captive to the Word of God.
I cannot and I will not retract anything,
since it is neither safe nor right to go against conscience.
May God help me.
Jesus said that if you silence the people, the rocks will cry out, during the triumphal Entry into Jerusalem. I became born-again during the Jesus Movement of the late 60s early 70s. I read somewhere that in a survey they found that practically no millennials are born-again Christians. I believe that it is time for God to wake up some rocks. We need a new revival. Come, Holy Spirit, Come. Thanks for this post.
Thank you Mark for this most telling observation…oh that the rocks may cry out indeed—as I’m feeling a bit hard and dusty myself 🙂
For me it was 1976. I had always been what I considered a believer, having been raised in the Church, but it was a particular summer Sunday in July of that bicentennial years that I had gone to Church with mother and it was as if the stoppers had been pulled from my ears…it was amazing—as if I had finally heard and comprehended a foreign language for the first time—-yet I will readily admit that I have ebbed and flowed over the years—like many I suppose—and once again…praying the stoppers are being removed as I am again hearing more clearly 🙂
That is not a surprising bit of info regarding the millennials—-yes, we need an Awakening!!!!!
For me it was the eyes. Iread and I understood, although I had read that passage countless times before.
It’s amazing how suddenly things can become focused when just moments before they were fuzzy or even non existent!
Reblogged this on Talmidimblogging.
Now that is Faith, that is Love and this is what it is all about. I shouted for joy as I read Fr.Weinandy’s detailed ‘demand’ of the Lord. This was extracted out of earnest trial, humble confusion and implacable Faith. And of course He heard and made good. This is our knowledge of Christ in action. This the real Power. We would do well to follow Fr.Weinandy’s example. The Holy Ghost is never absent………….it is we who are absent.
Definitely so Chris—thank you for such a sound reflection and observation—it takes courage for what Fr Weinandy did—and he did so through a great deal of tempered prayer… waiting on the Word of the Spirit of God to affirm his initial thought—yet he thought best to first “check in upstairs” before acting on what he feared might just be ego of self—that is indeed wisdom on the good Father’s part—and as Mark stated earlier—it is time for the rocks to cry out!!!
That was something that Bishop Ashenden noted in his interview the other day—“the Holy Spirit can do anything”…and it seems He is getting busy 🙂
Something is definitely brewing? I am so hoping it is coffee. 🙂
There does seem to be a whole lot of shaking going on. I’ve heard and read so many people speaking of dry bones coming alive, sleeping beauty waking up, the wheat being threshed, storms a coming, all sorts of analogies around the church and the times we are living in that seem to express the same idea.
I do like mine with a bit of sugar and milk—more like a cafe au lait—-
I just feel a sense of wonderment having read and seen in such a short period of time two very different men of two very different denominations echoing a sentiment that they aren’t out exactly pushing—but a sentiment possessing a common thread…
and as I’ve sat on the sideline now for quite sometime of the Episcopal and Anglican fold feeling as if I was this lone oddity saying for no one in particular to hear…”this isn’t right, none of this is right….”
So to now to be hearing a cross lines agreement with that little observation of mine has been greatly uplifting this week.
But I know that Satan will work swiftly to silence the rising clatter…I’ll just keep clanging the bell a bit louder!
Good stuff Julie and I share your hope that some type of uprising is happening to combat the progressive poison that seems to have taken over the church. I used to like Pope Francis; someone I disagreed with politically but whose empathy and outreach to non Christians I felt was badly needed in the world. I am more and more alarmed though by his admiration of the authority of government and his complete ignorance on how capitalism works and the benefits it offers.
Thanks Tricia—and I was with you there on Francis—I was such a JPII fan that at first I was a bit leaery—would he embrace John Paul’s zeal of evangelization of the Gospel—as well as a commitment against those “evils” dogging humankind such as communism and totalitarianism….and taking the name Francis seemed perhaps a sign—but as time went on–his waffling, his comments or blatant ignoring of glaring issues—his wishy washyness over same sex unions, gay clergy, etc—the list goes on—I read that in John Paul we had a man who had suffered under two different evil regimes—the Nazis and the Soviets—in Francis we have a man who lived under Marxism in Argentina—vastly differently mindsets and approaches to “bad” governing bodies….
I’m sticking with John Paul…..
Indeed, vastly different mindsets. JPII, along with Reagan and Thatcher helped drill the last nail in to the coffin for communism and and was a huge proponent of freedom from the chains of big government. This new Pope, not so much….
The President, The Pope, and the Prime Minister by john o’sullivan is a great read!
Oh cool, another one to add to my growing list!
you have got to read this book The Book Thieves—-about the books the Nazi’s plundered….I’m just almost finished—it has been so overwhelming…..
People go to church to hear the Gospel faithfully preached, not soft socialism. That’s a simple, straightforward and absolutely true observation.
Thanks Tom- it’s been an interesting adventure learning about all of this
I appreciate your updates on current happenings in the “body of Christ” so much of which is negative. These positive steps by courageous men are a light in so much darkness.
Thank Oneta—that’s the thing…we never hear about these stories. We never hear about Christians who take a stand for Truth and God’s word…instead we hear the stories about those who fight against God and His word…as they are the ones hailed to be the victories, those in the right…
someone has to share the news that there are those who continue to do and say and speak that which is of God despite what the rest of society thinks….
may we all be so bold in our faith!
We would not be so intimidated and cowed into silence if we knew there were influential voices being raised in the world. Especially in lands not our own! We become accustomed to our own and can feel the US is the only Christian voice left, and we see it dwindling. God, give protection and courage to those you call to be prophets for our day.