Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Another comment...

And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures,
And ascended into heaven,

I reproduce here a comment I left on Fr Chadwick's blog apropos of the real presence, elevations and all that rubbish:

In answer to some points above about my post, I deliberately left blank any reasons, whether theological or liturgical, for the nine points I submitted for sound enough reasons. I am not a sacramental theologian and leave the “machinations” of Grace to God. I hope you would agree that were the nine points put into any kind of practise they would successfully lift any vestiges of belief in the doctrine of transubstantiation clean out of the liturgy. That is the sole ultimate objective.

I do not come from a Roman Catholic family. Half my family are Anglicans. My upbringing was quite strange in the sense that my mother, whose mother is Anglican and father a lapsed Catholic, took my siblings and me to a Roman Catholic church on Sundays (never on holydays) and while she insisted that we all (with the strange exception of my sister) “made our sacraments,” that is penance, first communion and confirmation, she became increasingly annoyed as the years went by that I took it “too seriously” and not as this sort of cultural rite of passage that she undoubtedly thought it all was. We never prayed at home. My mother made no effort to instruct any of us in the faith herself. In fact, she stopped attending church more than fifteen years ago at around about the time that my brother was confirmed. My father is an agnostic/atheist of lapsed Anglican parentage. My brother “believes in something,” but is largely apathetic about religion. My sister is an outspoken atheist. So, in terms of my immediate family, I really am the exception. I still remember the horror with which my mother greeted the news that I was going to university to study Divinity!

Perhaps the misconception that Dale makes about my “Lutheran-influenced” doctrine of the Eucharist comes from what I said about the Hypostatic Union. I reject the Lutheran confessions as lukewarm. Luther was a great man but a tortured one I think and in later years found the maelstrom of the Reformation too much out of his direct control. My own view of the Eucharist is that it is a divine mystery, largely cheapened by historic and contemporary Roman Catholic praxis. For clarity’s sake, I will say the following: I am not a Jansenist. That was an heresy within Roman Catholicism. I publicly left the Roman church four years ago after a series of abortive attempts to reconcile my waning faith in that system with a bunch of damned hypocrites in Blackfen. If I have expressed Jansenist tendencies then I can say in all honesty it is not intentionally Jansenististic; at least no less than saying that a Jansenist is a Chrsitian because he professes belief in Jesus Christ. I am not a Lutheran either; I have no experience of Lutheranism besides a one off visit to a Lutheran church when I was in Cologne in 2005. Fr Chadwick is correct to say that I am influenced by the classical Anglican Divines, particularly Parker, Hooker, Andrewes and, of course, Laud. I greatly admire the writings of Dr John Wickham-Legg and, while I do not share his political views, I am also a great admirer of Percy Dearmer. I don’t have the text handy so this is not verbatim but I rather agree with Andrewes when he said that the Scriptures and the first four General Councils determine the boundary of our faith.

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