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This page last updated 7 June 2005
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Letters to AO

EVERY WEEK WE PUBLISH a selection of letters we receive in response to something you've read at Anglicans Online. Stop by and have a look at what other AO readers are thinking.

Alas, we cannot publish every letter we receive. And we won't publish letters that are anonymous, hateful, illiterate, or otherwise in our judgment do not benefit the readers of Anglicans Online. We usually do not publish letters written in response to other letters.

We edit letters to conform with standard AO house style for punctuation, but we do not change, for example, American spelling to conform to English orthography. On occasion we'll gently edit letters that are too verbose in their original form. Email addresses are included when the authors give permission to do so.

If you'd like to respond to a letter whose author does not list an email, you can send your response to Anglicans Online and we'll forward it to the writer.

Letters from 30 May to 5 June 2005

Like all letters to the editor everywhere, these letters are the opinions of the writers and not Anglicans Online. We publish letters that we think will be of interest to our readers, whether we agree with them or not. If you'd like to write a letter of your own, click here.

Thank you

In your opener for Sunday, May 29, 2005, you said, 'But today is many other things. In many parts of the Anglican Communion, it's a holiday of one kind or another. We're feeling rather off-duty, ourselves. Your Anglicans Online editorial crew is somewhat fagged by the last few months; among us we've got a sprained ankle, a dislocated vertebra, various family anxieties, deep stress over a pending financial transaction, massive tree branches fallen across the driveway, a computer sent off for its third warranty repair and, not long ago, a migraine'.

Wow, suddenly my own problems don't seem so bad after all. Can't say that I'll pray for you since I haven't really prayed for quite some time now.

OK, it's been years since I've done any praying. (Would it be alright to send well wishes your way?)

During my self-imposed exile from Anglicanism in general and the Episcopal Church (USA) to be specific (not because of the usual suspects — sexuality, gender issues, etc), Anglicans Online has been my soul contact with Anglicanism and the church here at home in the United States.

What I'm trying to convey to you is that there are a few of us out here, even though we may be 50 something and late bloomers when it comes to doubting our spirituality and religion, you are in our thoughts, at least mine here in northern California. We all have our trials and tribulations. But as the philosopher said, 'that which doesn't kill us only makes us stronger'.

If there is a God who listens and cares, may he (or she) take you by her (or his) arms and comfort you the same as a loving parent reassures a needy child.

Even though I've been a marginal Christian and a congregant in good sitting on the Church of the Holy Fence Line, I look forward each and every Sunday evening to reading your weekly opener and news from the Anglican community.

Mark Wood
Vacaville, California, USA
30 May 2005

Calling Colenso collectors

As a retired, broad-church priest of Sydney Diocese, I have established and seek to enlarge the free Bishop John Colenso Library at Campbelltown near Sydney. Among its thousands of diverse works (theological, historical, liturgical, hymnological, architectural, etc.) there is a large number of liberal Christian works and a considerable number by or about Bishop Colenso: Biblical works, biographies, sermons, theses.

What is missing are the four volumes of his fascinating NATAL SERMONS, now very difficult to obtain. (We do have photocopies.) Other Colenso works have been reprinted in recent years by Elibron in the US or Cluster Publications in South Africa and it would be great to have the Natal Sermons reprinted. In the meantime, does any individual or library out there have copies which they could donate or sell at a reasonable price? That would be marvellous!

The Revd Dr John Bunyan
St Peter's Parish Church, Campbelltown
PO Box N109, Campbelltown North, NSW 2560, AUSTRALIA
30 May 2005

Peace club?

Your excellent article on Trinity Sunday, concerning Christians being resident aliens, touched my conscience, especially the habit of drawing lines and hunting shibboleths, faults to which I am more prone than most.

After reading it, my thoughts went towards that moment in the Communion called 'The Peace', which I find can, if care is not taken, become divisive.

This was originally a very sensible hand-shake with people close at hand -- a symbolic expression of church unity. Yet there is a bit of a temptation for it to become a nightmare of hugging and kissing, confirming exclusive cliques at the expense of the less socially competent. But, more importantly, any nervous newcomer to the church looks on with terrified horror.

What started as an action of friendship can become the expression of a closed club rather than that of an open friendly church. These moments make me feel uneasy and I wonder if we might take a wrong turning in our expression of 'The Peace', but only if we are not aware of the dangers. I have to remind myself of the temptations of divisive actions and I may not be totally successful in this.

Many thanks again for your thought-provoking article. Your site is superb.

David Crowther
Clayton Parish Church
Bradford, Yorkshire, UNITED KINGDOM
2 June 2005

Anglican travel budgets


It's a good job we decided to accede to the wishes of those Primates that appear to be a bit homophobic and voluntarily withdraw from the Anglican Consultative Council. Otherwise we would have to spend a great deal of money sending a lot of people to the meeting next month rather than just the Primate (God Bless Him), four presenters, and three regularly elected representatives. Perhaps we can send the money we are saving to a good cause someplace.

I certainly hope our American cousins to the south are being just as frugal.

David T. Brown
St. Peter's Anglican Church
Campbell River, British Columbia, CANADA
30 May 2005

Earlier letters

We launched our 'Letters to AO' section on 11 May 2003. All of our letters are in our archives.


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