Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Stand Wobbly

Dr. William J. Tighe banned from Stand Firm

History Professor, faithful Byzantine Catholic, and no slouch in theology, my fellow Contributing Editor of Touchstone, A Journal of Mere Christianity, Dr.William Tighe, has been banned from commenting on the blog, Stand Firm. Dr. Tighe received no warning, and only found out when attempting to post a comment.

I asked Greg Griffith, one of the people in charge of that blog, if he denied this report. His answer to me contained the following:

"[Dr. Tighe] was not banned for his position on WO [women's ordination]. He was banned because he insisted on bringing up the topic on every thread he commented on. It was a nuisance and a distraction, and a violation of our comment policy, which has been clearly stated for over a year and a half by now, and which is linked at the bottom of every page on our site...We don't care what anyone's position on WO is, but we do insist that no one bang that drum on every thread they choose to participate in. Whether it's WO, or continuing churches, or the infield fly rule...Dr. Tighe has for months been one of our most obnoxious guests, and has been given more leeway than perhaps anyone. It was clear that either he never understood his status as a guest, or he didn't value it. So be it - he is not our problem any more."

(The words, "and has been given more leeway than perhaps anyone" is quite revealing under these circumstances.)

One of our readers, who comments frequently, Fr. Laurence Wells, said this about Greg Griffith's explanation:

"It is shocking to learn that Dr Tighe has been banned from commenting on the blog Standfirm, for the purported reason that he always 'injects' the issue of WO into all threads. Even a cursory survey of the threads which he participates in shows that to be a falsehood of the foulest sort, an egregious violation of 9th commandment."

It is undeniable that William J. Tighe is every bit as obnoxious as Griffith has said. Nothing is more obnoxious than a man whose arguments are too powerful to refute, whose facts are voluminous and organized, and whose intellectual faculties out gun the opposition. Nonetheless, even such a pain in the neck as Bill Tighe deserves some sort of courtesy, like a warning or simple notification. Perhaps the warning could have said: "Dr. Tighe: unless your arguments become weak enough for us to handle, we will ban you."

Frankly, if Dr. Tighe is motivated to comment when the subject of Women's "Ordination" is relevant, it is because he sees the connection. That connection is obvious to those of us who cannot join with those conservative Episcopalians and other Cantuarians who fail to understand the connection between W "O" and their one and only issue, Homosexialism. That link, that is both historical and theological, about which I have written more than once, is painfully obvious to us, since the inevitable path from W "O" to Same Sex Blessing was anticipated years before it was seriously entertained in the Episcopal Church. This is why the spectacle of conservative Canterbury Anglicans who tell themselves and each other that they are orthodox, and standing firm in the Faith, cannot be taken seriously by people who notice that their position is hopelessly compromised due to their acceptance of a major revision. As I have stated before, the apologists for Same Sex Blessing (and the heresy of Homosexualism in general) needed only to dust off and use the very arguments provided for them by the proponents of Women's "Ordination." The idea that anyone can do this, and still claim to "stand firm," demonstrates the power of the will to overcome reason.


poetreader said...

In denying that discussion of WO may be an integral part of other issues, they have already decided that it is merely a peripheral issue, one among many. I'll quote part of what I posted on another board:

The Catholic Faith is not an amalgam of this belief and that belief and this other one, but rather a seamless tissue of interconnected parts, each affecting the way others are perceived and believed.

Thus a belief in the validity of female ordination impacts an increasing circle of other beliefs.
For instance: one may have a thoroughly orthodox-appearing belief in the Real and Objective Presence in the Sacrament, but one is asserting this real presence to be extant in situations where Traditional Catholics consider it impossible, i.e. when "consecrated" by a woman. If one believes this consecration to be objectively impossible, then one believes the hosts in the tabernacle that are so consecrated to be mere bread, and not an object of adoration, while the believer in such ordination falls to his knees before it.
Furthermore, no matter what one's view is of the Eucharistic Sacrifice, it does make a difference whether the celebrant is a valid priest or not. In the latter case, as surely as there is no presence, there is no sacrifice. To worship what is not God or to offer what is not an acceptable sacrifice are not laudable acts.

When there are female bishops, the problem compounds, since one has to do detective work to ascertain by whom a male priest was ordained BEFORE assisting at Mass or bowing before the tabernacle.

Does it make a difference in Eucharistic theology whether females are considered valid priests or not? You bet it does.

One's belief in the relation of gender to ordination also impinges upon one's anthropology and thus one's Christology. Either the sexes are interchangeable or they are quite distinct. If they are distinct, then maleness is an integral part of Christ's humanity, and He is seen in one way. If they are interchangeable, then maleness is a mere accident and He is seen differently. These are not irrelevancies in theology. One's view of them affects most theological matters one way or another.

The disavowal of gender roles, moreover, tends (as is amply illustrated in the changed outlook in ECUSA and ACoC) toward alterations in traditional moral theology and specifically in the view and practice of marriage.

Sorry, _____, but, simply on the basis of the one issue of female ordination, I indeed do, and must, look at your entire theological position with a good deal of reservation, even suspicion, as I have to see this one view as having warped your position into a something that is no longer Catholic,

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Join the club Dr. Tighe. I've been unjustly, wrongfully, and sinfully banned at SFIF too.

For details, please see the comment thread at The MidWest Conservative Journal here:

I only state that upfront because someone might dismiss any remarks I might make about SFIF by saying that I have an axe to grind.

"Dr. Tighe received no warning, and only found out when attempting to post a comment."

Dr. Tighe only found out that he was banished from SFIF when attempting to post a comment?!

That is inexcusably rude and un-Christlike. Let me try to reconstruct a plausible scenario:

(1) Dr. Tighe woke up one day, tried to post a comment at SFIF, and received an error message saying that his e-mail address was banned.

(2) Dr. Tighe then had to forlornly grovel a message to Greg Griffith asking whether he indeed had been banned. ("Grovel" might not be the right word, and Dr. Tighe might rightfully object to it, so I'm willing to change it.) Anyways, the point being that there was NO warning given. Nor was there a courtesy e-mail sent to Dr. Tighe notifying him that he had been banned.

Now when Greg banned Dr. Tighe, he had to make some adjustments to his database software. He knew Dr. Tighe would receive the error message stating that he had been banned. Since Greg knew that, he could easily, EASILY!, have sent a short e-mail to Dr. Tighe notifying him that he had been banned and why. But nooOOO! Instead he left it to Bill to discover those error messages on his own to learn that he might have been banned. Now Greg did not know whether Dr. Tighe would send him an e-mail asking whether he indeed had been banned or whether it was some mistake, but he surely must have had a strong inkling that he would get an email from Dr. Tighe.

In this particular case, I find the treatment by Greg Griffith and the team at SFIF (Matt Kennedy, Sarah Hey, Jackie Bruschi, and David Ould) to be one of contemptuous disrespect to Dr. Tighe.

They should be ashamed of themselves for what they did to Dr. Tighe (and for that matter, what they did to me too.)

P.S. With regards to a warning from SFIF, I challenge any presupposition that such a warning is factually justified. A warning is often issued for no good reason at all from the powers that be at SFIF.

Albion Land said...

I have sent the following email to Greg Griffith:

Dear Greg,

I am writing to draw your attention to a piece posted on The Continuum by one of my co-hosts, Fr Robert Hart.

I must say that I am surprised, and disappointed, that you have banned Dr Tighe, but that is certainly your right. Fortunately, I have never had to do so at The Continuum, but would not hesitate to do so if I felt it necessary.

I don't know if you will want to draw attention to Fr Hart's piece on StandFirm, but please feel most welcome to respond at The Continuum if you wish.

Yours in Christ,
Albion Land

Anonymous said...

I too have been lopped off of various Episcopal lists for comments regarding the putative ordinations of women. I am happy to be in the good company of exiles.

The issue is clear: a woman "priest" cannot perform sacramentally, and (yikes!) a homosexual male priest can.

God help us !!

Rev'd William E Bauer (EMC)

poetreader said...

I have at least four friends who have been banned on another board (which I'll leave nameless for now), none of whom received notice or explanation. There seems a strong willingness on the part of some 'net personalities to refuse a voice to those who dissent from their opinions, and there seems furthermore to be an attitude that good manners are not required in doing so. These actions, are, of course, the formal right of the owners of the sites, but one somehow expects better of Christian gentlemen.


Anonymous said...

Dr Tighe, we all know, will find ways to make his voice heard. SFIF's loss will be some other blog's good fortune. But the episode is noteworthy not so much as it touches Dr Tighe but because it illustrates what a sad and painful disappointment SFIF has become.

When I discovered that blog about two years ago, it seemed to show potential as a forum for orthodox Anglicanism. I will grant that its management believes it to be such. But quite apart from their unpersuasive efforts to appear as "Reformed," or "Evangelical" or "Protestant," after long exposure it becomes obvious they are only generic Episcopalians with a dislike for gays. The management is adamant in its tunnel vision refusal to acknowledge theological problems in WO, usually with the mantra, "WO is not a salvation issue." But rather than remaining neutral on this issue, they have adopted a persecutorial attitude toward those who oppose WO, and are not shy in slamming or banning anyone who points out the dozens of ramifications of WO into numerous doctrinal issues. For SFIF, WO is always "off-thread." It is unarguable that SFIF not only supports WO, but BELIEVES in WO devoutly, fervently, passionately. It supports WO with greater intensity than it opposes SSB.

The lack of moral integrity on the part of SF became clear when it ran a essay under the name of J.I.Packer which vociferously slandered and insulted Anglo-Catholics of the Continuing Churches. When Dr Packer disasssociated himself from the article, the SF management was quite prompt in apologizing to Dr Packer, but NOT at all to the people who had been vilified! The attitude was that it's okay to ridicule Anglo-Catholics, even if the essay was unfortunately a hoax.
The Packer authorship was eventually denied, but the contents of the article were not.

The Tighe banning is not an isolated incident, but the last episode in SFIF's unmasking of itself, showing its true face as generic Protestant pablum. It is not a place for orthodox Christians, of either Catholic or Calvinist persuasions, to hang out.
Laurence K. Wells

Anonymous said...

The militant defense of WO by all of the "Stand Firm" type groups and their connection to Canterbury really says it all.
Also they join Dr. Toon and David Virtue (both firmly entrenched with Canterbury) in their thinly veiled criticisms of Anglo Catholicism.
The old Marxist phrase "useful idiots" comes to mind.
Fr. DeHart
P.S. do have a Google account, but cant remember or find my password.

Anonymous said...

I visited Stand Firm two or three times months ago, quickly worked out that it was a forum for people who didn't regard women's ordination as a problem and gave up.

Oh, and Ed: it's always o.k. to bow/genuflect/whatever before a tabernacle. God is everywhere. Therefore, He is in that tabernacle, whether generally or particularly.

J. Gordon Anderson said...

So much for freedom of speech and posting! That's too bad. I have never found his remarks or comments to be more or less rude or divisive than anyone else's out there. All in all it sounds pretty unfair to me.

Anonymous said...

The lengths to which the pro-WO folks will go -- I call them "moderate revisionists" to distinguish them from the orthodox on the one hand and the uber-liberals on the other -- is truly astounding.

In the wake of VGR's consecration, I was active on a list where such issues were discussed. Within a few months, a number of these "moderate revisionists" subversively, and without discussion, seized control of the board and - with similar lack of notice or justification - forced off all the actively posting orthodox members. One woman in this cabal even created a "dummy" account and gave it moderator status so she could have two "votes" in any administrative decision.

Last I heard, some or all of the people in this cabal had left the Episcopal chuch for some protestant denomination -- showing that they were not merely confused about the apostolic succession but, in fact, contemptuous of it.

What is particularly remarkable in the "Stand Firm" approach is not just its theological parallels to the homosexualists, but also the parallels in "tactic".

Over on Stand Firm, W.O. got its own little segregated thread (in which I commented extensively) and posters were told they shouldn't discuss the issue anywhere else. Any mention of an anti-WO position in the many issues to which it connects (such as poetreader points out here) was met with a "we're not discussing that here -- you have a whole thread devoted to the topic."

In other words, create a segregated "isolation zone" where the issue can be discussed, disconnect it from all other discussion, refuse to accept - or even tolerate - mention of a connection between that issue and others, and then claim to be "fair and balanced" because you provided a whole thread as "space" to discuss (and "listen to") the issue.

The parallels between this treatment of the orthodox by the "Stand Firm"ers and the treatment of even the "moderate revisionists" by the homosexualists in PECUSA are so obvious I'm certain I need not lengthen my post by ennumerating it.

It's a pity that SF feels it necessary to censure the orthodox. They provide a useful resource and collection of info. I often point people to it as a good place to find out info on what's up in the Anglican Communion -- but always with the caveat "they're not genuinely orthodox, so don't expect a fully balanced presentation or orthodox theology."


Anonymous said...

The other point I meant to note was how this sort of behavior -- and Stand Firm is far from the only place this happens, both on the net and off it -- presages the futility of any sort of "big tent" between those who are orthodox and those who are revisionist on the issue of W"O".

The treatment of the orthodox by the moderate revisionists -- which is, at best, a "don't ask don't tell" policy... indeed (and I'm thnking of things Dr. Toon has written) also of catholics by protestants within PECUSA and its recent offshoots -- is precisely the kind of treatment which the uberliberals meeted out to both orthodox and moderate revisionists before they had come forward to (more honestly) persecute and expell them.

As long as the nacent "new" Canturbury province in the U.S. is shaky and underpopulated, this sort of "toleration" will be offered to those orthodox and anglocatholic believers who (innocently but foolishly) sign up with it. Once this province has its feet under it and some institutional stability and recognition, you can expect this behavior of the "moderate revisionists" to come to the fore in conventions and legislation -- and see the genuine traditional Anglicans (once their parishes, congregations and funds are firmly grasped by the new province) told to shut up or ship out... leaving, of course, their buildings and bank accounts behind.


William Tighe said...

I would like to recommend to those who are interested in the reason for my banning at Stand Firm to follow the comment thread to this item:

down to my comment of 12-02-2007 @ 6:44 pm which (as I can only conjecture, since I was not informed) was the reason for my banning. If you follow the thread as a whole, you will see that I was responding primarily to the question of one kyounge1956 about why some Anglicans might wish or hope for the break-up of the Anglican Communion. In that part of my comment that was erased and deemed to be off-topic I tried to explain to her why not a few English FIF/UK Anglo-Catholics of my acquaintance do think that this would be a good thing, the reason being that they view WO as much more "ecclesiologically significant" than SS, and do not see that any of the proposals that have been mooted since 2003, from the Windsor Report onwards, as having anything to offer them, but rather as strengthening and institutionalizing the notion that WO is potentially "orthodox" because it is in a "process of reception" whereas SS is "beyond the pale" because it is not so. I also mentioned that some of the English Evangelicals involved in "Reform" would not really object, either, because some of them see that the "Reformed Catholicism" nature of Anglicanism, or at least of the Church of England, increasingly diluted since 1662 or even 1559, as hopelessly compromised. My comment seemed directly relevant to the subject matter of the comment thread, and not an adventitious intrusion, which is why is was puzzled about my inability to post in response to some of the follow-up discussion there the following morning.

Anonymous said...

LP's take on their special threads dedicated to WO is exactly the same as mine. They deliberately limit the discussion so that nobody can point out the far-reaching repercussions of WO in numerous other areas. This is why Bill was such a threat to their insecurities: he saw and pointed out root causes of present ills, causes they are spiritually unable to acknowledge. The Calvinist apologist Cornelius Van Til aptly described this as the noetic effects of sin.

The special threads, placed there as a kind of decoy for unwary orthodox believers, worked just like a playground in a ghetto neighborhood in the days of Jim Crow: the message was you play in your park and stay out of ours.

I have been today the recipient of some fairly violent e-mails from one of the lesser lights of SFIF, full of language like "public lies," etc. Has anyone else been so honored?

Laurence K. Wells

Anonymous said...

Also, LP's assessment of the Trojan Horse knows as "Common Cause" is right-on. For those old-line Continuing Church jurisdictions who are listening to this siren song, don't say you weren't warned! The attitude of SFIF is a portent of things to come.
Laurence K. Wells

poetreader said...

Slightly off topic, but, Sandra, I can find God to worship anywhere, including in a tabernacle that contains no consecrated elements. However, I cannot pay unconsecrated bread the same homage I pay the very Body of Christ. The Israelites who worshiped in the 'high places' claimed that it was the same God they worshiped - but to worship Him in a way He has not authorized is not praiseworthy. I'll not worship God in unconsecrated bread any more than Josiah would worship Him in the standing stones on the many hills. He was and is both places, but not made manifest as He is in the places He chooses to appear.


Fr. Robert Hart said...

LP wrote:
Over on Stand Firm, W.O. got its own little segregated thread (in which I commented extensively) and posters were told they shouldn't discuss the issue anywhere else. Any mention of an anti-WO position in the many issues to which it connects (such as poetreader points out here) was met with a "we're not discussing that here -- you have a whole thread devoted to the topic."

This shows that the SF people are not theologically minded at all. They cannot imagine that W "O" has any effect on other matters.

Bill Tighe ("...he is obnoxious and dislike, did you know that?") wrote:

My comment seemed directly relevant to the subject matter of the comment thread, and not an adventitious intrusion, which is why is was puzzled about my inability to post in response to some of the follow-up discussion there the following morning.

As I said, Bill was not banned because he was off topic; he was banned for making too much sense. It does not pay to debate wisely in some circles.

Fr. Robert Hart said...

Laurence Wells wrote:
I have been today the recipient of some fairly violent e-mails from one of the lesser lights of SFIF, full of language like "public lies," etc. Has anyone else been so honored?

I saw the e-mail of which he speaks. He does not exaggerate. Shameful.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Dr. Tighe wrote: "I would like to recommend to those who are interested in the reason for my banning at Stand Firm to follow the comment thread to this item:

down to my comment of 12-02-2007 @ 6:44 pm which (as I can only conjecture, since I was not informed) was the reason for my banning."

Dr. Tighe, I followed the thread as you suggested and I saw the commentatrix write: "comment edited by commenatrix- off topic" on your comment.

Then I read what you said your comment was before it was edited out by the commentatrix.

I really don't see how or why the commentatrix considered it off-topic. It looks thoughtful, erudite, and on-point to me as a response to Kyounge1956.

But it was a SUBJECTIVE, judgment call by the commentatrix and she judged that portion of your comment as off-topic. Which given her unchecked authority as commentatrix she is allowed to do.

And as you well know, the same thing happened to me, i.e, a subjective and arbitrary judgment call was made by Sarah Hey to ban me that was not based on any factual evidence whatsoever.

Another observation. This thread topic was written by Sarah Hey and titled: An Analysis of Andrew Goddard’s Latest Taxonomy.

I can't help but notice that your banishment and mine are related to Sarah Hey. Coincidence?

Anonymous said...

As a result of his banning at Stand Firm, a technical glitch in the software has also prevented Bill from posting at Titusonenine, believe it or not. One of the reigning oligarchs at Stand Firm has repeatedly promised to correct this problem for two days now. This is what I wrote to him:

Why not simply restore the man's posting privileges in full and reevaluate this silly PC censorship policy? Honestly, that would take care of all the problems here in one fell swoop, and you could get back to your responsibilities, once again free of these annoying and unnecessary interruptions.

I have generally always been labeled a conservative, and my natural inclination when encountering a posted message I do not like has always been to simply scroll past it, not to call my mommy and not to page the thread police. When I encounter a television program I do not like I simply change the channel, not to deprive others of the opportunity to watch it. When I encounter a vegetable I do not like I simply refrain from putting it on my plate, not to deprive others of the opportunity to eat it. This trait, I do believe, is an artifact of a genuinely conservative temperament.

For me to insert myself into such matters as some sort of supreme arbiter for the rest of mankind strikes me as pride, for obvious reasons I should think. It smacks of the perfectibility of man, and that concept of course is completely alien to a genuinely
conservative temperament. It is, however, central to modern "liberal" belief.

Stand Firm fancies itself as the "conservative" Anglican's blog. By current definition, that would appear to be true. People now calling themselves "conservatives" are embracing the perfectibility of man across the board, and the repercussions are brutal, both nationally and globally. In fact, Bill Tighe has never written truer words than when he wrote:

"Today's conservatives are yesterday's liberals."

There is a difference between a conservative and a fascist. A conservative has always been on the Right. A fascist, on the other hand, having departed the Left after a political schism, has merely found a constituency on the Right (always "social conservatives"). Nevertheless, despite the right-wing garb, he remains a man of the Left with all his utopian ideals and his belief that command and control structures can actualize the perfectibility of man. This was true in Europe in the '20s and '30s and it is true in this country today.

You and yours at Stand Firm have been routinely editing posts and banning posters for no other reason then to control content. What you are engaging in is no different from Political Correctness. An actual conservative (by the pre-21st century definition, I mean) humbly submits to a Higher Power Who is Truth. The Truth can take on all comers and withstand all arguments, so there is no need for censorship; indeed, such censorship might actually serve to remove Truth from the equation. That you would resort to such severe and labor-intensive tactics reveals that you are not first and foremost committed to Truth, but rather to your own ideals. For you it is not about submission, but rather imposition. You may well be "conservatives" by today's definition, but you are, in truth, no conservatives at all. "Today's conservatives are yesterday's liberals."

I invite you and yours to become the conservatives you claim to be. Man will not be perfected, the Eschaton will not be immanentized, and the Truth will not be defeated by any argument conceived by the mind of man. Learn it and live it.

You can start out on your new paths as conservatives by restoring Dr. Tighe's posting privileges across the board (submit to Truth). Then you can cease and desist from the Herculean labor of monitoring and editing everybody's posts (dump the command and control structure). Think of the tremendous weight that will be lifted off your shoulders. By contrast, His Yoke is light. Submit. Live and let live. Let truth prevail. Let go and let God! This is the essence of true conservatism.

Come on in, the water's warm. But you must bring Bill Tighe with you.

Albion Land said...

Perhaps Bill Tighe would like to consider becoming a regular contributor here. He would be most welcome.

William Tighe said...

If I might add some more observations:

First, it is my impression that commenters at SF who incur the disfavor of of the site's archons are warned several times and finally told, "this is your last warning" before being banned. I received no such warning, and I cannot recall being admonished at all for some considerable space of time. The only other commenter who *may* have received such treatment there was an English homosexualist troll going by the name of "Merseymike" -- but I only state this because after his sudden disappearance some of the comments asked why he was no longer there, and one of the site archons replied that he had been banned. For all I know, however, he may have received the courtesy of a "last warning" as I did not.

Secondly, and referencing my previous posting on this thread, if I was banned for my response on the thread that I mentioned to kyounge1956, it seems either ignorant or disingenuous of the "commentatrix" to have deemed part of my comment as "off topic" since it was in response (and an accurate and relevance response) to her question. One might note, also, that the commentatrix, in removing my comment as off topic, did not add "And you are banned" or "one more such comment and you will be banned" which leads me to conclude that she (or they) were seeking any plausible excuse to ban me, and for lack of anything more plausible they hit upon that comment.

Third, anyone who visits SF will soon see that there are certain regular posters whom I might describe as dogmatic and scoffing liberal Episcopalians ("Brian from T1:9," "Plainsparson," "Bob from Boone" and others) whose comments are regularly personally abusive and ad hominem, unlike my own. This is also the case at "Titusonenine," where the "webelves" have openly admitted more than one occasion that such "reappraisers" are allowed a much wider indulgence than the orthodox or pseudo-orthodox "reasserters" in order to "maintain the dialogue." Perhaps this is also the policy at SF, although I do not recall having seen it explicitly formulated.

The cause of my "protest" is not the fact that I have been banned there, since it is the clear right of the archons who rule the site to do so. It is the hypocrisy of the "double standard" that prevails there and the fact that it came without warning (whatever lame invocations of "previous warnings" we may now be hearing from Mr. Griffth -- who, if not their Ialdabaoth, seems to be their point man in this matter) that occasions my making a matter of it.

Finally, while it is clear that a pro-WO stance is not the official orthodoxy of SF (as it would seem that both Greg Griffth and Sarah Hey are against it, and only Matt Kennedy favors it), what is clear is the "unofficial orthodoxy" that it is a completely different matter from SS, or at least that one can be "orthodox" while embracing or favoring WO but eschewing SS. What precedent for this position is there in Anglicanism as a whole before, say, 1960? I would say none, and add that the contretemps over the purported "ordination" of Lee Tim Oi in 1944 demonstrates this; and one can of course adduce additionally the fact that it has been the same sort of creative and novel readings of Scripture and discounting of Tradition (as with the former Dean of TESM's, Peter Moore's, arguments in favor of WO a decade ago) that were used to "justify" WO that hav e been since then used to "justify" SS.

But, then, as the old saw goes, "there are none so blind as those that will not see."

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Dr. Tighe writes: "The only other commenter who *may* have received such treatment there was an English homosexualist troll going by the name of "Merseymike" -- but I only state this because after his sudden disappearance some of the comments asked why he was no longer there, and one of the site archons replied that he had been banned."

Unbelievable. That an excellent church historian such as Dr. Tighe should be lumped together and treated the same as an English homosexualist troll like Merseymike. That is degrading and humiliating.

Making it worse is that at least SFIF had the courtesy to let its readership know that Merseymike was banned. As far as I know, SFIF has not yet informed its readership that they've banned Dr. Tighe.

Alas, Stand Firm has posted a thread today titled Finland Court Convicts Pastor For Refusing To Concelebrate Eucharist With Female Minister. Professor Tighe would have been the perfect resource to comment on this thread because he has insider knowledge of this situation.

Plus WO would not and could not be considered off-topic for this thread.

But alas, Dr. Tighe has been wrongfully banished. Their loss.

Anonymous said...

Finally, while it is clear that a pro-WO stance is not the official orthodoxy of SF (as it would seem that both Greg Griffth and Sarah Hey are against it, and only Matt Kennedy favors it),

Actually, from what they have said several times, all of them have an unorthodox position on the subject.

Sarah Hey -- in some well-thought-out and articulate posts -- has depicted 4 possible positions on WO which (if I remember them correctly) are:

1) WO is okay, even mandatory

2) WO is merely a matter of "taste" or "style"... those who disapprove of it may be tolerated but their taste is irrelevant to the policy of the church as a whole

3) WO is inappropriate, however nothing bars those with differing views from being in communion with each other

4) WO is unorthodox and has theological and sacramental ramifications which preclude full communion.

She has also rightly observed that the first 3 groups can, at least to some degree, all be in the same church -- in fact, this is the attempt of the nacent "new US province" as it attempts to paper-over or downplay this fundamental and irreconcilable difference.

I believe it is in _this_ sense (#2 or #3 above) that anyone on staff at SF is "against" W"O", and statements that they "oppose" W"O" should be understood accordingly. This is not a case of accepting the teaching of Scripture and Tradition on the priesthood, on sacraments, or on ecclesiology.

Positions 1-3 all share the same defect of rejecting that orthodox and catholic faith "handed down, once for all, to the saints", even those positions which have reservations about W"O".

Thus what is threatening to them is not objection to W"O" per se (provided it is the #2 or #3 kind), but rather the objections which are based on a catholic understanding of the authority of Scripture being received through the authority of Tradition, one which rightly understands the theological and sacramental ramifications of the acceptance of W"O".

It is this _orthodox_ objection to W"O" which so frequently causes the contempt, insults, and censorship of the orthodox by the "moderate revisionists" within the wider Anglican world... even while they appeal, to demonstrate their tolerance, to the sort of vacuous objections to W"O" (#2 & #3) which do not threaten their polity.


Anonymous said...

Ed, the reason I posted what I did about tabernacles was that I have heard about (but not directly observed) conservative Roman Catholics who make a point of not bowing (or whatever they do these days) to a tabernacle in an Anglican Church. They have their own beliefs about sacramental validity, which we regard to be erroneous, and in upholding them, Whom do they ignore? I'm therefore inclined to give a tabernacle the benefit of the doubt, and trust that God knows I am worshipping Him, or having the intention to do so.

As to sacramental validity, it's not just whether a priest is male, or the sex of the bishop who ordained him. A priest's sacramental effectiveness also hangs on the identity of the bishop in whose place he acts--so you might want to see a man's licences as well. Or you might want to give up on the whole mess and join the Continuum, which is, after all, what you've done.

Michael said...

This is really suprising - I haven't seen a lot of comments from the man in question (I guess I've been reading the wrong blogs), but every time I do, they stick out as being head and shoulders above almost everything else being posted. The man is an academic, and - as a Byzantine Catholic - is something of a disinterested, potentially more objective, commentator on the current Anglican situation. To find that he, of all people, was banned from a blog is profoundly weired.

Anonymous said...

For those who miss him, Merseymike can be found blathering with others of his persuasion and supporters at This ironically named blog shows the CoE has the same problems as TEC compounded, noting the recent Finnish court case, by being the state church.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Tighe got banned? Well, I'm in good company then! I got kicked for daring to quote Scripture on the WO ghetto thread that they had set up for that very purpose, the very passage that Matt was ignoring on the matter of priestesses. 1 Timothy 3, he kept wanting to look at irrelevant passages, and didn't want to acknowledge that one. They actually banned God's word, and hence God, from their blog, telling Him by implication, to shut up.

Dr. Tighe is a gentleman of the highest caliber.

I lost a lot of respect that I had formerly had for Matt, Sarah and the others back when they started engaging in the skulduggery to avoid discussing priestesses, and their banning of people who disagreed with them where they set it up to be discussed. They lost most of the rest when they didn't leave TEC on September 30th as they had intimated for some months. This is very sad. I found them likable and respected them, but I cannot do so now. If I recall correctly, the comment policy required warnings. Greg Griffiths then violated comment policy in banning Dr. Tighe, though violating comment policy was pretty common among the cabal of wobblies.

Commentatrix is the alter-ego of Sarah Hey, I think both have administrator privileges.I got the impression some time before I was banned that she didn't like me.

I'm not sure what they are "standing firm about" if they are still in TEC after September 30th.

Apart from having priestesses, at any rate.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Dr. Tighe got banned? Well, I'm in good company then! I got kicked for daring to quote Scripture on the WO ghetto thread that they had set up for that very purpose, the very passage that Matt was ignoring on the matter of priestesses.

Sodbuster, is that you? Yes, I feel like I'm in good company too, since I've been wrongfully banned alongside you and Dr. Tighe.

Although Dr. Tighe does rate special mention and recognition amongst our "Banned from SFIF" club. He's the only one of us who got banned from Stand Firm without Stand Firm publicly alerting its blog readers that Dr. Tighe was banned. I think they want his banishment to be kept quiet since they haven't announced it.

Dr. Tighe is also the highest profile "bannee". He deserves recognition for that too.

Incidentally, I believe I have the strongest case for a wrongful banishment by Stand Firm's Sarah Hey. Anyone interested in the details, please e-mail me at "". I will send you the particulars.

Anonymous said...

TUAD, yes, the login thingy here requires me to remember my google password. Hah!

I think Dr. Tighe was the most unjustly banned. You ruffled a lot of feathers (though not in a way that was really out of line) My views were more conservative than those of the "archons", and I came by it from Scripture rather than from Tradition, which set me apart, but I was given but one warning, and I did not violate it yet was banned. It is the word of God that they fear. They've figured out how to twist tradition, or think that they have. To twist Scripture against someone with a Presbyterian M. Div. isn't something that they can hope to win, hence the ban.

To be comfy in the little stone bridges, sipping sherry and smoking cubans, without having to deal with clown masses and non-Anglican wierdnesses seems to be their goal. I would not have thought it of Matt, but I guess when you find someone's idol, you get stoned.

Fr. Robert Hart said...

These are worthy comments, and so I want to remind the Anonymice to please create some kind of handle, or even sign your real name if you don't mind. In a thread like this it helps when we can identify you somehow.

Truth Unites... and Divides said...

Well Anonymous of 2:07 am, if you care to send me an e-mail at "", then you'll better be able to compare whether Dr. Tighe was more unjustly banned from SFIF or was it me.

You'll be surprised at how utterly ridiculous and how wrong and how unjust and how sinful my banning by Sarah Hey was from Stand Firm.

poetreader said...

If bullies beat upon a bunch of people, does it really matter which one they thrash most soundly? The bullying in itdself is what's wrong.


Truth Unites... and Divides said...

"If bullies beat upon a bunch of people, does it really matter which one they thrash most soundly? The bullying in itself is what's wrong." (PoetReader)

You got me there. Suffice it to say that the StandFirm blog team of Greg Griffith, Matt Kennedy, Sarah Hey, Jackie Bruschi, and David Ould have bullied both Dr. Tighe and myself unjustly.

mousestalker said...

It's their blog, they can ban whom they wish for whatever they wish, whenever they wish. And IMHO, Dr. Tighe was waxing prolix about WO where he shouldn't have. The policy about discussing is has been repeatedly stated. Would I have banned him. No. But then again I've never banned a non-spammer in my life. Mocked and humiliated yes, but banned, never.

Y'all can ban me here if you wish. That is your right.

Anonymous said...

The Tighe banning took place at least a week ago, with numerous comments since then deploring the arrogance of the SFIF junta. Finally, someone rises to speak on their behalf. The only argument "Matthew" can muster is "It's their blog, they may ban whomever they see fit." Of course, Matthew. But that high-handed manner of operation destroys even a slight pretense of open debate or a level playing field. I'm not sure what definition of "prolix" you are using, but in Bill's gloriously incessant comments on WO, I did not catch a wasted word. He exemplifies a fine economy of language as befits a scholar of his stature. I regret that he had to endure such rough handling from Greg Griffiths et al., but the incident has served to demonstrate the pathetic failure of SFIF to defend the Apostolic ministry established by Christ, the principal link between the Churches of Anglican heritage and Catholic Christendom. That link is of no value to them, they clearly detest it, and will not tolerate anyone who speaks clearly in its defense. The apostolic ministry as understood in a Catholic sense will be for ever "off-thread" or "off-topic" on SFIF. And as Matthew informs us, "It's their blog."
Laurence K. Wells+

poetreader said...

I really hupe that Our Lord, when he comes again and sits upon that throne, will find that we four, for all our weakness and insufficiency, will not have treated this as "our blog" but as His. His voice will not be heard here unless we are willing to listen to those we disagree with and to discuss the issues with them with respect. I accepted the invitation to join this blog because that is what I believed it to be attempting to be. I still think so.


Fr. Robert Hart said...

Matthew wrote:
Y'all can ban me here if you wish.

You don't get off that easily.

Anonymous said...

Matthew wrote:

It's their blog, they can ban whom they wish for whatever they wish, whenever they wish.

And what does it say about them and their blog if they go to the extreme of banning a man because he exposes the fact that their emperor has no clothes every time he posts?

WO and SS are inextricably linked. One cannot honestly be discussed without alluding to the other. Those who deny this are either liars or theological incompetents. But even if they disagreed with the linkage, so what? We're back to the naked emperor again.

Yes, it's their blog and they can ban whomever they wish. But who are they? Men and women of Christian integrity or not? Their treatment of Dr. Tighe firmly establishes the latter.

Fr. Robert Hart said...


Allow me to put the matter across in what follows.

I believe that we can say, with certainty, that Bill Tighe writes with skill and erudition, making his points by use of facts about Christian doctrine, with facts of history, and with reference to books that may be consulted for details. In short, he debates in such a way as to be convincing. What SFIF has revealed, in banning him, is their own intellectual insecurity. It is worse than Bulverism, because it does not even pretend to debate. They banned him not because he debates improperly (for in the last thread that led to his banning, it was SFIF's own Ms. Hey that raised the topic of W "O", making it fair game), but because his facts and logic are too much for them to contend with. They have chosen the easy way out.

Alice C. Linsley said...

I do believe I've been banned there also, although I haven't visited that site in months. Obviously, I'm in good company! :)