Tales from ACNA-Land: “Church Militant” gets new meaning

For the latest in my series of “Tales from ACNA-Land” I’d like to share with you a bit of the world view of Anglican secessionists.The Rev’d J. Philip Ashey, the American Anglican Council’s chief operating officer and chaplain, described his groups efforts like this: “Like Special Forces, we go behind the scenes and we blow up things.” Isn’t that nice. Just like Jesus. Well, just like Jesus if he went to Bizarro World.

Before he got fitted for a purple shirt, David Anderson was interviewed by Larry King on CNN. Asked why he was staying in the Episcopal Church, Anderson said, “Well, I like a good fight.” He must be happy now. The more church property his colleagues attempt to purloin, the more fights he gets!

Speaking about the Episcopal Church and ACNA’s conflict, Bishop Robert Duncan said this, “We’ll leave and they can take the stuff with them to hell, because that is where they will take it. This is Good Friday and we have to face it.” Got that? Duncan is quite sure the Episcopal Church and everyone in it is going to hell. (Jesus had some things to say about those who would judge, but I guess that bit isn’t in Duncan’s bible?) Also note how Duncan equates his struggle with Our Lord on Good Friday. Of course, the only people getting killed now are gay people in Africa while Duncan’s Anglican friends cheer. Duncan’s worst inconvenience is likely to be an economy class airline seat or perhaps a mitre that’s not very shiny.

Of course, this mentality really takes hold on every secessionist’s favorite website. Here they express their opinions of our Presiding Bishop. (Conversation transcribed by Fr. Jake, who writes about “Who is worth killing?”)

Greg Griffith: I’m already reaching for my pistol…

Anthony: Threatening in a blog to shoot people is serious. Just sayin’.

Greg Griffith: Anthony, Agreed. However, “reachin’ for my pistol” is an old expression I use around here. No threat is being made.

Charles Nightingale: Alisdair+: Perhaps it’s time for the “Small band of former paratroopers” to mobilize and deploy!

Virg: “they don’t realize most of us have guns, know how to use them and nobody’s gonna mess with our bishops!…”
At last… a perfect solution to all this bickering going on in the church. We’ll just kill the sobs. God help any dissenters on Fr. Maxwell’s vestry.

the snarkster: “I’m already reaching for my pistol…”
Hey, what gives with this? The Commenatrix (Blessed be her name) got on my case for saying a lot less than that.

It should be quite evident to all by now that our Presiding Marine Biologist and all the 815 gang are not liken to a school of angelfish. They are sharks, pure and simple.

Frances Scott: Frankly, Fr. Maxwell, I wouldn’t waste a bullet on her.

Greg Griffith: Of course, no one is threatening anyone with anything here. I’ll caution anyone pondering a real threat to read our comment policy, but I’ll also remind those who think we’re under orders to keep everything here cupcakes and bunny rabbits not to fall for the caricature of Jesus that our Worthy Opponents have tried to sell us… how was it put the other day? – A sort of zoned-out hippie pacifist, wandering from town to town, spouting Zen koans and harmless parables?

Let’s not forget that the people in these churches have in many cases put their life’s work into them; that their parents and grandparents are buried in the graveyard; it’s where their children were baptized, confirmed and married; and that the people we’re up against are nasty – there’s no other way to say it – and they’re playing for keeps.

I won’t criticize those who think the best course is to play the pacifist, but they shouldn’t find fault with those who want to pick up their sword along with their trowel (emphasis added by Fr. Jake).

So make no mistake. These people are out for blood. I wish I could say in confidence that this is just a figure of speech.

This post is part of a series, Tales from ACNA-Land. Read the previous post or the next post.

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7 Responses

  1. Talk about fighting talk…can we send him to Iran?

  2. Susan Russell says:

    Thanks for this, Scott.

  3. FrSean says:

    I about fell over when I saw the Ashey special forces quote. I am really sick of “Church as Culture War”. Can we preach the good news, share the Eucharist, Baptize the new, pray for the sick, and mobilize the faithful for their work in the world and get over our “positions” for awhile?! Seriously… Special forces?!… Guns?! Good Friday?!… Hell?! Do we know how to speak in anything besides all-or-nothings anymore?!

  4. You’re mistaken, Father. Duncan doesn’t think that TEC and everybody in it is going to Hell. Go back and read the quote – he thinks the whole Anglican Communion is!

  5. Those of us in Pittsburgh have often remarked on Duncan’s apparent martyr complex. Like many in his movement, he revels in his imagined persecution. Duncan doesn’t understand that martyrdom is an event, not a career choice.

  6. KJ says:

    The way that Griffith describes “their” church would make it sound that the Divine in the venture is an afterthought.

  7. dutch Bautsch says:

    Seems that the schismatics are playing by Junior High schoolyard rule. Let’s see: they’re the cops and we’re the robbers. Did I get that right?