Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Lambeth Look Out?

Regular readers of The Continuum will have seen a comment recently by Bishop Barry Peachey of the Anglican Independent Communion. Having never heard of the AIC, I wrote to Bishop Barry, and the following is the result of our correspondence. I have a sneaking suspicion that the presence of the good bishop on these pages may be occasion for controversy. If that is the case, so be it. Let me just remind you all of the one, simple rule of the game here: robust, but polite, discussion.

Having read the 'No News is.....No News' piece from 15th October 2006 it seemed to me to be fairly obvious what the problem is, at least here in Britain. I can't speak for the rest of the world but the British position with the Continuum is that most of the churches that would claim to be part of it are simply not doing anything to report. The Traditional Anglican Communion under Archbishop John Hepworth has a presence in Britain of about twenty clergy, but no Bishop. +David Moyer from America is their Episcopal Visitor. Beyond that there are three or four other Continuing Churches with clergy numbers that can be counted on the fingers. One of them has six, five of whom are bishops! Unsurprisingly, no-one takes them seriously. They show no signs of growth, and the potential for the growth of the TAC here is limited by the fact that they are all Anglo-Catholics, and Archbishop Hepworth is committed to re-union with Rome. That does not sit well with the mainstream of traditional Anglicanism in Britain, which is a very broad church..

The largest Continuing Church in Britain by far, and possibly by now the world, is the Anglican Independent Communion, with 7 bishops (two of them retired) and a further 40 ministry staff, clergy, deaconesses, and Lay Ministers in Britain. I am the Metropolitan Chancellor, one of just two Metropolitans, that is bishops with worldwide authority. As such, I am Head of Legal Affairs of the AIC Worldwide, and deputy to the Metropolitan Archbishop, the Most Revd Dr Norman Dutton.

The AIC was founded in 1997 in the USA by +Peter Compton-Caputo, an American-born former Church of England Vicar in Devon. He consecrated to the episcopate +Norman Dutton from Cheshire, who arrived back in England newly consecrated as the only AIC clergyman in the British Isles. What has happened since then is truly a miracle, and one that may be seen on our web site. In the first few years things grew very slowly, and the AIC was just one of the one-man-and-his-dog churches that comprise most of the rest of the Continuum here. Then three years ago, as the Church of England started to really rampage down the path to destruction, things started to change. Since then the AIC has exploded across the world, and now has about thirty bishops in twenty dioceses around the world, in Europe, the USA, the Caribbean, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, India, Pakistan, Australia, West Africa and East Africa. A Theological Institute has been opened in Britain and also in Brazil, where the AIC has entered into the Anglicans for a Common Cause agreement with +Robinson Cavalcanti of the Diocese of Recife (Southern Cone). AIC Worldwide is also in active discussions with the Global South movement, and friends in Forward in Faith about the way forward in Britain. Previously in Britain the C of E ignored the Continuum, which it saw as no threat, and a bit of a joke. Well, I can assure you that the joke is over.

We are often asked why we do not get together with the TAC. Well, the essential problem is churchmanship. Whereas the TAC is exclusively Anglo-Catholic, the AIC is the same broad church that the Lambeth Communion always was. We have many Anglo-Catholics, including me, but we also have Pentecostal and Charismatic Anglicans, and everything in between. It is that breadth and openness that makes us attractive across the Reformed tradition. What we have in common is Scriptural truth. We do not ordain women to Holy Orders, although we have an active Lay Order of Deaconesses. We do not ordain practising homosexuals or appoint them to any position of responsibility in the church. We do not permit the teaching of pluralism, syncretism or any other popular Lambeth heresies. The other reason that we are not in communication with the TAC is that they won't answer our correspondence! The reason for that is a mystery to us, as there is no reason for us not to work together so far as AIC is concerned.

The Continuum in Britain is of a rather different origin than in the USA. The Traditional Anglican Communion, the Anglican Catholic Church and the Province of Christ the King have their roots in the Affirmation of St. Louis (1977) which was an American/Canadian initiative, put together by what have been referred to as 'Amer-Anglicans'. The AIC has it's roots in original English Anglicanism which stems straight from the English broad church tradition in its purest form. We are told by our overseas dioceses that it is this fact, the genuineness of our English heritage in the home of Anglicanism, that makes us their choice of Communion. Early attempts at a Continuing Church in Britain were an abject failure. The AIC has 'broken the mould'.

We believe that the growth of AIC Worldwide is in large measure due to the efforts of a very professional Webmaster, and a willingness to transparently communicate everything we do to the world. Communication is everything. On the website is a Notices page which is constantly updated, and we publish a Newsletter periodically, which is also mounted on the website. There is a huge amount of information, and hundreds of photographs of our clergy and people. We work very hard to be spotlessly efficient. If you send me an email, you get a reply very quickly, and you get it from a senior bishop, not an administrative assistant.

We would like to disseminate our news more widely, but we are severely persecuted by the Church of England which keeps us out of Church Times as best as it can, and denies us access to anything that it can control by fear or force. The Church Times claims to be an independent voice for Anglicans, but this is patently untrue as our experience has demonstrated. Whilst we do not sympathise with them, the fact that they have published just one item on the AIC, when they have been sent many, speaks for itself. We feel that it is our duty to try to contact faithful Anglicans by any means.

We have suffered tricks from C of E bishops which include Diocesan circulars calling our staff 'bogus priests', letters to Undertakers saying that if they use us, they will be boycotted by the C of E, and threats to Methodists that if they let us use their premises they will forfeit their ecumenical agreements with the C of E. One C of E priest offered his church to us for an ordination, and was told by his Archdeacon that if it went ahead, his career in the C of E was over forever!

We won't be put off by a political correctness-motivated state church that has abandoned the faith, no matter what. Except for the fact that the state church owns its buildings, and can give its staff pay and pensions, scores of local parishes would have come over to AIC by now. We believe that in time the future of true Anglicanism in Britain is for each church to be an independent Trust, which is self-supporting, and can hire clergy according to its means. The parishes can then have clergy of their choosing, under a bishop of their choosing. They can choose to keep the Faith, and not be forced down the communal road to Hell that is the current choice of the Lambeth Communion. In the meantime we are building for the future and biding our time.

Rt Revd & Rt Worshipful Prof Barry Peachey
chancellor@aicuk.org.uk

38 comments:

J. Gordon Anderson said...

Parts of the AIC, including +Caputo's successor, Bp. Loiselle, and a number of clergy, joined the APA back in 2004. They brought two churches with them. There was a bishop on the eastern shore of MD who I believe was consecrated by +Caputo, and who has a rather large and successful ministry out of Easton, I am told. But as far as I know he is not in communion with anyone else and are an "independant" congregation.

The thing about continuing churches that continues to soil our name and mission in some peoples' eyes is that while there may be 30+ bishops, and two hundred priests, or whatever, in some jurisdiction, the question that really matters is how many parishes and people do they have? This is where the real, viable continuing churches are truly differentiated from the others.

Ken said...

All that's very interesting. It would be nice to see the communicant "numbers".

The good Bishop is correct, that communication is the key. A good Web presence is always helpful.

Ken said...

Mr. Anderson,

Your comment posted as I was writing mine. And your second paragrapsh IS the big question?

But, ISTM, that the chronic shortage of priests in the RCC maybe impacts what we think is the right size.

I could see 1 priest for each 100 communicants and 1 bishop for each 100 parishes being a good number.

poetreader said...

I too have questions about the AIC.

I concur with the other gentlemen in seeming to see a lot of clergy and little strong lay presence. That reminds me too much of the less-than-respectable part of the “Old Catholic” phenomenon in which I moved some hears back.

I also seem to see the overemphasis typical of that environment on a bishop operating alone. There seem to have been a lot of solo consecrations. That shouldn’t happen except in extremis.

I’m wondering also where their first bishop came from. I can’t find any information on that in the website.

I am made a bit uncomfortable about their constant stress on their distinctiveness (calling themselves “Broad Church” several times) as if justifying separateness rather than reaching toward unity. The Continuum has too much divisiveness already in it. We don’t need more.

Though it’s a well-done website, there is nothing in it that makes it look to me like a jurisdiction I’d want to get closer to. However, I would be delighted to be proven overcautious. I hope the bishop will tell us more.

ed

Fr. Robert Hart said...

The first comment is factually insufficient. True, Bishop Caputo did assist Archbishop Groce, along with Bishop Shavers (and one other)in the consecration of Bishop Joel Johnson, who ordained me. However, that has made Bishop Johnson the very last remaining bishop of the old Anglican Rite Jurisdiction of the Phillippine Independent Catholic Church. This Anglican Rite predates the "Continuum" by several years. Interestingly enough, through Bishop Shavers the orders have a direct Succession from a Roman Catholic bishop dating to 1972 (which passes for nothing more than interest for us, since we know that Anglican orders always were valid anyway. But it has an ecumenical value to it).

Regarding the PICC, which was for a while part of the Union of Utrecht, Bishop Francesco De Jesus Paktigan assisted Bishop Albert Chambers on that important day, January 28, 1978, in Denver. So, the very solid lines, that even Rome by its 1896 ruling cannot deny (to be consistent while recognizing as valid the orders of the PNCC, and having recognized the Old Catholics of Utercht for so long)run through the "Continuum" as well as through Bishop Johnson.

Unfortunately, Bishops Groce and Shavers became part of the APA, which was why Bishop Johnson, and those of us who were with him in Easton, Maryland, found ourselves abandoned, forced into what some may choose to call "independence." Bishop Johnson began to try a very profound solution by approaching the PNCC in Scranton, to remain an Anglican Rite of what was by that time the last remaining orthodox O.C. body (no longer with Utrecht). That has been a slow process, and at the time of my coming (with Bishop Johnson's full approval, blessing and permission) into the APCK in order to serve a church in Arizona that had no priest, seemed to be getting no where.

As for Bishopp Caputo, the day before he joined in the consecration of Bishop Johnson, in order to resolve his own doubts about his first consecration, was conditionally consecrated by Archbishop Groce, Bishop Shavers and the other bishop whose name has escaped me for the moment. Nonetheless, I am surprised to learn (as he would be were he still in this world) that from his humble efforts something large is growing across the ocean.

fr. erich a. zwingert said...

My, this is rather odd. I have never heard of an Anglican bishop being referred to as "Worshipful." I actually thought Father, Son & Holy Spirit were the true bearers of that title.

Fr. Anderson is correct about the AIC coming into the APA. I was involved in that process from the APA side. Bp. Caputo was originally made deacon in the ECUSA and subsequently a priest in the UEC, another continuing church. He was NEVER a vicar in the CofE, which gives pause to wonder what Bp. Peachey is talking about. The AIC was erected in 1999, and Bp. Caputo resigned his see in the AIC in 2000 and Bp. Robert Loiselle, Bp. Caputo's Co-adjutor, took over. Bp. Caputo died in 2001. The AIC records at the time they blended into the APA in 2004 indicated that the only bishop in the AIC was +Loiselle. Bp. Loiselle, while retaining his dignity as a bishop, is happily ministering as Rector of St. Paul's Chapel in Crownsville, MD (and a rather lively parish at that!).

Warwickensis said...

The Continuum presence in Blighty is very small, indeed, it was my impression that the ACC were the dominant group followed by the TAC. The AIC I've never heard of at all. I suppose the reason being that I've never yet met any of the laity unlike the other two contingents.

Ohio Anglican said...

It seems to me to have an awfully large number of Bishops. If I read it right, perhaps I'm in error, it sounds like seven Bishops supervising 40 clergy & layworkers. That would be a ratio of one Bishop for every 6 clergy and/or lay readers.

Rt Revd Prof Barry Peachey said...

I am delighted to answer some of the questions raised as best as I am able.

1. The only single consecrations of which I am aware since I have been part of the AIC are the ones that I have done this year in Brazil and Australia, to found the AIC in those countries. A moment's thought will make it perfectly obvious why this was essential. We simply don't have the money to fly bishops around the world. It costs a fortune, and the AIC as a body does not have the resources to do it.

2. I am afraid that the defence of + Samuel Loiselle as the 'real' AIC is breath-takingly risible. He is one of the very small jurisdictions to which I referred, who fell out with +Compton Caputo in circumstances which are history, and which are of little concern to AIC Worldwide.

3. If people can't see our laity, they simply have not followed the links under the names of the clergy. Try the links from Revd Daniel Konduri in India, or from Very Revd Bernardo Moutou in Gabon. We have four parishes in Mexico City, but I have no idea of average attendance. There are lots of photographs of congregations to be found all over the world.

As for 'numbers', I simply don't know. I am advised that we have over 10,000 faithful in East Africa, and over 100 parishes and schools in India. In England we have nor tried to do a count as such. For example, one of our clergy works full-time in Nursing Homes, celebrating Holy Communion almost every day of the week. He has no church building though. What do you 'count' that as? Another who is based in Sussex spends six months of the year in Moldova where he has a very large missionary project. How do you 'count' that?

There is also the issue that so many church counts are entirely bogus. A local C of E parish near me has 'Count Sunday'. That is the day for which attendance figures are submitted to the diocese. The Vicar has taken to having a multiple-Baptism Service that morning!

There is no other Church in the Continuum which publishes so much web information about its work. That might tell you something. Like the C of E and the Lambeth Communion the AIC Worldwide is both a church, and a communion of churches. We do not directly run the churches of Communion members any more than the Archbishop of Canterbury runs the Anglican Church of Tanzania, for example.

4. Our references to being a broad church are the simple truth. The Church of England always was a broad church, and we follow in that tradition. It is a great pity that for so many 'Continuum' has come to mean 'Anglo-Catholic'.

5. Contrary to what one gentleman says, we do not have seven bishops supervising 40 staff in Britain. Two Assistant Bishops are retired, and have no day-to-day responsibilities. One is the Metropolitan Archbishop. That leaves four Regional Bishops, one of whom is me, for the North, Midlands, South, and Wales. The great majority of my time is spent doing Chancellor’s work. We only appoint and consecrate bishops that we need.

6. I am the Rt. Worshipful because I am an Anglican Chancellor, that is Judge of the church's Court. I am a lawyer in my lay life. In Anglicanism Diocesan Chancellors are 'The Worshipful' and Provincial Chancellors are 'the Right Worshipful'. It has always been so. Personally I am not big on ceremony, and day-to-day I am not too bothered what anyone calls me. I am much more interested in spreading the Gospel. Those for whom that is more important than church politics ad political correctness may care to join us

Fr. Robert Hart said...

I had forgotten the line about an alleged past as a Church of England priest. +Peter was never even a member of the C of E; he was an American.

albion said...

Robert,

I can't speak at all to Bishop Caputo's church affiliations. However, you misspeak when you say that he was never a member of the C of E, that he was American.

He may not have ever been a member of the C of E, but his being American has nothing to do with it. I am American, and was for four years a member of the C of E and was made a Reader in that church.

Ohio Anglican said...

As I said, I may have been mistaken about seven active Bishops. However, four active Bishops would be a ratio of one Bishop for every 10 clergy/layworkers. I can't imagine an army with one general for every 10 privates. In the ECUSA, for example, one Bishop may supervise approximately 200 clergy & layworkers.Granted, some other Continuing Anglicans are similarly "over-Bishoped".

Rt Revd Prof Barry Peachey said...

I fear that Ohio Anglican suffers from a lack of grip on reality. How does he imagine that perhaps just one bishop can travel the length and breadth of Britain continuously to do everything that has to be done, whilst earning a lay living to support his ministry? The truth is of course is that his only agenda is to 'rubbish' the Continuum, and I feel sorry for him that his talents can't be put to better use

Fr. Robert Hart said...

The idea of one bishop trying to be responsible for up to 200 clergy is ridiculous. Of course, I know that in ECUSA this happens, because the bishops there are simply CEOs of business firms.

J. Gordon Anderson said...

There are rural deans, canons, and archdeacons that can assist bishops with diocesan administration.

Ohio Anglican said...

I was certainly not trying to "rubbish" anyone. Iwas just making an observation. I certainly don't know the particulars of how far one might have to travel in England. However, our Diocese in the Continuum here in the US contains 5 states, a larger land area than England, and has one Bishop. I'm simply observing that if an Anglican church in the Continuum has too many Bishops, it opens us to criticism and attack from the C of E and its Communion, as well as Rome and the Orthodox. We don't want to set ourselves up for attack if we can avoid it. You will find there is no one more open-minded than I concerning other churches. I never slam or attack anyone. I simply believe that the Continuum needs to work for unification to live up to Christ's commands for unity; and to give ourselves greater respectability among other churches. I have nothing but respect for the AIC. I especially like the fact that they are not exclusively Anglo-Catholic, but also embrace those of a respectful, "low church" Anglican tradition.

Warwickensis said...

In my diocese of Rochester (Kent), there are at least 6 bishops, a diocesan, a suffragan, two assistants and 2PEVs, this significantly reduces the Bishop-Presbyterate ratio. A 1:200 ratio is simply unworkable.

albion said...

Could we perhaps try to move this away from what is running perilously close to a sniping match, and try to be more constructive. I, too, find it curious that there seems to be an inordinate focus on the hierarchy and virtually nothing on the numbers on the faithful. But this is not unique.

What do we have in common here, and is there any ground for cooperation and intercommunion between the AIC and the other jurisdictions?

Fr. Robert Hart said...

J. Gordon Anderson replied to my most recent comment with these words:
There are rural deans, canons, and archdeacons that can assist bishops with diocesan administration.

This is true. But, the Bishop ought to know the priests well enough to be their pastor, and also have a good grip on that is going on in the churches. The idea that bigger is better, or that ECUSA can provide a working model, are both rather weak. Perhaps part of how ECUSA became the Apostate institution it is has to do with the business manager role of the bishops. It is, to say the least, a dubious paradigm.

J. Gordon Anderson said...

"Perhaps part of how ECUSA became the Apostate institution it is has to do with the business manager role of the bishops. It is, to say the least, a dubious paradigm."

Excellent point, father. The business model does have severe drawbacks - with us and with other groups (e.g. the Romans).

Rt Revd Prof Barry Peachey said...

I live in the Church of England Diocese of Lincoln, which is 80 miles x 50 miles. It has about 300 clergy. To service them they have 3 full time bishops, 6 retired bishops, three Archdeacons, umpteen Rural Deans, and 46 full-time staff at Church House. The average Sunday attendance in the local villages around here is a couple of dozen on a good day, and very often fewer than a dozen. The AIC have no full-time staff. Who's kidding who?

Did you know that in the Church of England figures, people who don't go to church don't count. When they are no longer able to attend the parish church and put their hands in their pockets, the C of E has no further interest in them statistically. Our priests who put a great deal of work into residential care centres, hostels, hospitals and prisons have no interest in people whose version of ministry is compiling bogus statistics to try to justify their existence. That's the job of some of the Church House people.

Oh by the way, I had a long email from the Congo today from another group who want to join us. Perhaps I should start off by asking them how many people roll up to church on Sunday, and whether they can prove that they have a high enough people to clergy ratio before we decide whether or not to accept them?

It seems to me that somebody in this discussion has forgotten that the Twelve had no money, no buildings, and no jobsworths. They were there to spread the word. I know how they feel. I cannot for the life of me understand the mentality that says that 100 worshippers in a church building are valued and important, but 100 people spread across two or three Nursing Homes who have to receive Communion in the Common Room or at the bedside are worthless and of no account. This is one of the reasons that the C of E and ECUSA is in a state of collapse.I think that some of our correspondents need to take a deep look at what they think a 'church' really is.

fr. erich a. zwingert said...

I tried to post well over 24 hours ago on this thread but for some reason it didn't upload properly.

Here is what I attempted to post:

I think it is rather telling as to who “lost his cool” first.

I see Ohio Anglican as merely challenging for an explanation to gather the extent of ministry in the AICUK. He is also spot on regarding the “over-bishoped” continuing churches. It is shameful. Some of us have tried to draw the line on making new ones(ie., APA, APCK) but others make it look very bad.

What I attempted to point out in my previous post was some of the factual errors Bp. Peachley posted as truth. Fr. Hart also noted, as I did, regarding +Caputo not being a C of E priest as was posted. When details are in error, it causes a cloud to descend on whatever else is set forth as fact. I'm sure as an attorney, Bp. Peachley would know how to use such errors to destroy a witness in court. Admittedly, I am skeptical about the AIC “Worldwide”especially since no one even heard of them before the posting here.

I have a call in to a friend in Maryland who may have been present when Bp. Peachley's Metropolitan Bp. Dutton was consecrated. I hope to hear from him about 8:30 PM ( this was Thursday evening)in U.S. Eastern time. Maybe I'll have some additional info then.

Now back to present time
Heard back from my friend and the background of Bp. Dutton, et. al., regarding the passing of AIC from +Caputo to them, is a piece of crazy history. What is listed on their website is false. I don't type well enough to write it all up here. I believe that Bp. Peachley is misinformed about the start of the AIC "Worldwide". Basically what all of this boils down to is that none of the larger continuing churches will have anything to do with them, regarding them in the vagantes category. There is no substance here. I think we have better things to do than to worry about a "church" that has absolutely no people and has a "made up" history.

Blessings,
Erich+

albion said...

I am posting this at the request of a man identifying himself as The Fr. Canon Professor R.H. Tregenza+, PhD, Rector of Mt. Calvary Anglican Church, APA and
President of the Anglican Independent Communion, Inc.I have edited out portions that could be construed to be libelous.

It is addressed to Bishop Peachey:

Dear Sir,

In good faith and charity I must respond to this deeply confused and flawed statement of yours.

You previously stated on this blog:

"2. I am afraid that the defence of + Samuel Loiselle as the 'real' AIC is breath-takingly risible. He is one of the very small jurisdictions to which I referred, who fell out with +Compton Caputo in circumstances which are history, and which are of little concern to AIC Worldwide.”

As to “history”. I first created the term “Anglican Independent Communion” in 1999 for +Peter Caputo ( Compton-Caputo was not his real name. Compton was the married last name of his last wife, attached by a “-“ without legal or due process to his name to sound less Italian and more English) and St. Paul’s Anglican Church, Parish of St. Charles the Martyr, after we all voted to depart +Melli. So, first question, how could your AIC exist since 1997?

The Anglican Independent Communion Inc. is the legal name and trade mark of a Maryland, USA Corporation which holds all the names, titles and trade marks of the AIC as its sole property since December 4, 1999. By what right do you use the name?

+Robert Samuel Loiselle is the only bishop consecrated in a lawful and regular manner for this above mentioned jurisdiction with three Catholic bishops in direct attendance, with a proper clergy election, with the approval of the laity and vestry of St. Paul’s, the mother parish of the diocese, the laity of the diocese and the recognized clergy of the AIC under the Canons of 1958 PECUSA and C of E 1604. This was on March 11, 2000. +Bob was consecrated Suffragan for the USA with a full congregation in attendance within the proper context of a public Holy Communion. Is this the case with Dutton or Gains? +Bob is the present rector of St. Paul’s, the historic cathedral of the AIC, and has been rector since 2001. He still sits in the chair. Does Dutton or Gains?

On November 11, 2000 at Georgetown, Delaware +Peter Caputo resigned as Ordinary at the yearly AIC Synod for reasons of poor health. +Bob was nominated by +Peter and then elected and raised to Coadjutor and then to Presiding Bishop of the AIC.

How are these documented facts ”breathtaking-risible”? I have ALL the documents and signed papers. I was Canon to the Ordinary and Canon to the Cathedral. I also have video tape of +Peter naming +Bob his successor at St. Paul’s.

We are not “one of the very small jurisdictions to which I referred”. We are the
original jurisdiction that you departed from in a lawless and anti-Christ like manner. We are the very Apostolic foundations that you/Dutton/Gains once needed but now abuse, obfuscate and denigrate. Is this kind, Apostolic or Christ like?

Would you really like to discuss in this public forum the real “circumstances which are history”? You attempt to dismiss the central issues of this case with the casual wave of the back of your gloved hand. Following are a few points for your and the blog’s historical review. But beware, I have many of +Peter Caputo’s personal papers which document his relationship with ++Doren and +Knight and his actions as the rector of St. Paul’s, and his dealings with
–LaRoque, -Clavier and -Dutton and the matters concerning his last marriage and his consecration in the Traditional Episcopal Church. +Peter gave them to me as his Canon for safe keeping. I can prove in a court of canon or civil law all that I represent here within.

I was present at the so called consecration of –Dutton. There was only one bishop there +Peter and no other letters of consent from those in abstencia placed on the altar or read at the consecration. I remember at the following tea… quite charming… Norman asking for these letters and +Peter, as was his manner was sweet, controlling but evasive because he did not have them. However, until last year Norman listed on your web site that +Larry Shaver (APA) provided a letter. He has since taken that off as +Shaver has publicly stated he never wrote such a letter. Colin Tatum was previously made by +Peter a “Lord Abbot” of the Order of St. Cornelius. As such, he had no Episcopal powers as a bishop outside of his order and no Apostolic lines other than those of +Peter. His connection to +Peter and –Dutton was first through an English honorary military society. His letter was not present at the so called consecration of the actor –Dutton.

John Gains was in fact a priest in the AIC and was priested by –LaRoque (who attempted to murder his wife and then committed suicide). John resented +Bob being made Coadjutor but voted for the election. He considered himself senior. +Caputo died on August 15, 2001 Three days before that Gains somehow got under +Peter’s hands without the knowledge or consent of the Presiding Bishop of the AIC, the Vestry of St. Paul’s Anglican Church, the Chancellor of the AIC, Mr. John Vickerman, or myself as Canon to +Loiselle and still by the way the “Canon to the Cathedral”.

The day before the +Caputo funeral was the first time that we knew of the so called Gains “consecration”. Not even the St. Paul’s vestry knew about the so called “consecration” of Gains. Gains first told me that as we were walking together out of the public viewing. I told him what he had done was totally lawless, in violation of the canons, and self serving. I asked as a “priest” how could he take such advantage of a dying man who with such advanced diabetes was not in his right mind. Was that decent and in order?

Your website states that Norman accepts the “coadjutor” position for the AIC in “July”. What exact day? And how was this possible in a lawful and Apostolic Church in the Anglican Tradition? Where was the election? There was no synod. There was no agreement by the vestry and laity of the AIC churches, no consultation with the lawfully elected Presiding Bishop, (who happened to be on vacation in Fiji at that time), no phone call to the Canon of the Diocese, or any documentation. Another self serving and lawless act? +Peter since November 11, 2000 had no authority to act as the ordinary of the AIC. If he was then functioning as a “missionary bishop” then he had no right to use the name Anglican Independent Communion in any Episcopal matters. Then by what right do you style yourself as AIC Worldwide?

You might suggest this is all possible within the economy of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church and the internet. I doubt that. Real shepherds have sheep that know their voices, roofs that leak, gardens that need tending and real churches that are not just post office boxes and URLs. Archbishops have more parishes than bishops. That is the Anglican way.

Now, why should these issues be of such “little concern” to the so called AIC worldwide and the Anglican Continuing Church?

Warwickensis said...

This conversation has caused me to think. Some really good thoughts here from all concerned.

Results are blogged here.

poetreader said...

What a wonderful example we provide to an unbelieving world when we invest so much effort in wrangling over prerogative and privilege than in proclaiming salvation to a dying world.

I'm observing something interesting here: The four of us on the masthead of this blog represent three separate jurisidictions of the Continuum: ACC, TAC/ACA, and APCK. As such we do have our differences, and can become passionate about them, but these are not what we choose to focus upon. I believe I can safely say that a leading desire of all of us is to bring an end to this sad division and to the bad feelings that have existed.

I, for one, have no desire at all to get into a discussion with the spirit that Bishop Peachey has brought among us, and find the tone of argument sufficiently uncomfortable that I have lost whatever interest I may have had in the "AIC"

ed

Rt Revd Prof Barry Peachey said...

The rant from Fr Treganza should tell you everything you need to know about AIC Inc. +Peter Compton-Caputo and +Colin Tatum are now deceased. +John Gains has retired. I was not part of AIC then, and those concerned are not part of AIC Worldwide now. I am entirely satisfied from the documents in my possession that ++Norman Dutton is in legitimate bishop's Orders. That is why this alleged history is precisely that, history, and I have no idea what people like this think there is to be gained by ranting at me about their historic personal problems in a period when I had never heard of AIC either.

By the way, I am assured that +Peter Compton-Caputo did work here in Devon for a period. His widow ought to know better than some of our correspondents.

albion said...

Ed,

As I hinted to in my last comment here, I would agree with you that the tenor of this conversation has turned sour. I must also say that I have been made absolutely dizzy by the number of names, ordinations and consecrations being thrown round.

I will repeat what I said to Bishop Peachey at the beginning of our correspondence -- I had never heard of the AIC until he appeared. But in a spirit of openness, I wanted to make him feel welcome here. I wouldn't say that has been the general response of other posters, but then I do not have a dog in this fight and do not know the history.

I'll leave it to those who wish to to battle it out, but would remind you all of your Christian obligation to do it in as charitable and constructive a manner as possible.

Mike+ said...

Oh, another continuing church...yawn!

albion said...

Mike+

That was a stimulating comment.

It would be nice to know whence you speak, and whether there is a bit of continuing tongue in cheek here.

albion said...

I forgot to mention something. In my survey of the AIC website, I counted, IIRC, 29 parishes in England.Don't recall seeing any figures on other places, but may have missed them.

It appears to me that the AIC is growing in two ways -- by coopting existing churches and by its own planting.

In the latter case, the very nature of emerging Christian communities is a messy business, and it may not always be possible, as Bp Peachey points out, to point to a parish setting. This is bound to happen when clergy come on board before there is a "place" for them. So what's the problem with ministering where the Spirit leads, as long as there is episcopal guidance and authority.

That leads me to another question, which is one of catholic order. I believe I saw something on the AIC website about a pentecostal minister in West Africa having been elected as an AIC bishop. Does the AIC have in place the structures to ensure that this man is teaching the catholic faith, as the likelihood is that he probably doesn't know much about it, given his background? In that respect, I did notice that the AIC has some pretty strict rules about liturgy and the appropriate Scripture to be used.

Just some random questions and thoughts, but I would really like to see this conversation become a constructive one.

Ohio Anglican said...

I like what POETREADER said. Isn't ittotally cool that writers on this blog representing the APA, ACC, TAC, ACA, and APCK all more or less agree on almost everything?!? Wouldn't it be great if all these branches of the Continuum could get our respective Bishops to agree together on the abundance of things we have in common? It could be the end of division within the Continuum.

Ken said...

I like the idea of going to the "disenfranchised" such as those in retirement homes. A soul is a soul no matter where it may be. Many are left out or left behind by society. So if the AIC wants to reach out to them, that's good.

Ohio Anglican said...

On the subject of the Continuum needing to work for unity, a thought occurs to me. We often read of the various Continuing churches attempting to have talks with the Vatican/Rome about some sort of communion agreement between them and Rome. I can't help but think the powers that be in Rome would respect us more if we were all united and got along. My guess is that when they receive a communication from a Continuing church about a possible communion agreement, they say to themselves: "If they can't get along with other Continuing Anglicans, how could we expect them to cooperate with us?"

Warwickensis said...

Phew, this has been a roller coaster of comments!

If I have said anything to disparage the AIC, then of course I apologise. However, I am yet to meet a member of the AIC. That will come in time, I'm sure.

Actually, I'm glad that finally we have a Continuum Bishop who is online and actively listening and responding, and I thank Bishop Peachey for appearing here and making comments.

May I ask Bishop Peachey to look in on the Anglo-Catholic Central Board? It would be so good to have one with episcopal orders to make comments there since we have no-one to represent the holders of the Apostolic Office.

I guess we Anglo-Catholics haven't really got the best record for following Episcopal Authority! ;-)

Rt Revd Prof Barry Peachey said...

Meeting with me or any of our staff is not difficult. I would be happy to meet with Warwickensis or anyone else at any time. All he has to do is ask. In my opinion one of the failings of bishops is a general view of their inacessibility to the laity. That is not the case with me or any of our regionary bishops.

Rt Revd Prof Barry Peachey said...

Further to the comments about +Peter Compton-Caputo and the allegations by Canon Tregenza that he was never in England. I have now carried out some enquiries and can confirm that he assisted at Meavey, Devon (St. Peter)during the period he was here. This is confirmed by his widow. As remarked by Albion, it does not actually matter, save that it probably reflects on the likely veracity of other statements by the good Canon about +Peter.

john said...

Where are their churches? I telephoned one listed as Holy Trinity Bury (the CofE HTB still has weekly mass!), and was told that there is no church, and no mass. I was though, informed that a Mr Jeffrey Robinson was about to be ordained to open a parish in Prestwich, in his house! The Archbishop suggested in the meantime, I attend a FinF church nearby called St Hilda's 'who use the English Missal'. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that they had not used the English Missal for about 25 years. I was also told that St Hilda's was about to close down and the congregation move to the 'new church'. After conversations with the Diocese, that was seen to be rubbish. It have since been told by a member of St Hildas that Jeffrey Robinson is a very unpopular parish reader who was turned down for ordination by the Anglican Church and that certainly no one will be following him to his new church in Mansion Avenue.

This, it seems to me, is the general calibre of ministers in continuing churches, with a few exceptions, frustrated laity who want to dress up.

I also telephoned their church in Bolton, and was also told that they have no church, and no mass. Their priests were surprisingly candid and happy to chat, but clearly, it seemed to me, lived in a bit of a Walter Mitty land.

John Savage.

Albion Land said...

John Savage,

If you read this, let me remark that I think you get the award for the most recent post on the oldest post.

Forgive me if I don't recall your name from possible previous comments. Just allow me to welcome you to this blog and suggest you become a regular reader.

In doing so, you might find that the continuing movement has just a bit more to it than you might have perceived on first blush.