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This page last updated 14 June 2010
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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 We usually do not publish letters written in response to other letters.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 Canadian 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 7 to 13 June 2010

Like all letters to the editor everywhere, these letters express 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.

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A five-legged Anglican stool?

Thanks once again for your wise words about our fellowship in the Anglican Communion, which I believe will endure despite what the great Bishop Colenso called the fear-full, thought-less, "frenzies" that recur from time to time, at present stirred up by both liberal and conservative intolerance.

The last Archbishop of Sydney, the winsome Rt Revd Harry Goodhew, set out a five point pattern to which I think all of us could subscribe — and which challenge each of us. He hoped that dioceses and local churches would be

OBSERVABLY GOD'S PEOPLE (emphasising Christian life and character),

PASTORALLY EFFECTIVE (ministering and caring for the People of God),

EVANGELISTICALLY ENTERPRISING (encouraging a range of ways of reaching out to those who do not believe),

GENUINELY CARING (to express the wide range of concerns that loving others and the world that God has created might generate), and

DYNAMICALLY ANGLICAN (finding ways in which we can maintain and benefit from our Anglican heritage in doctrine, liturgy, and order in a manner that speaks to a world that is different in so many ways from that of the 16th and 17th centuries).

In his very last Synod address, by the way, he spoke of the importance of Anglican worship and of the BCP. These five points can be found on the tiny website with an absurdly pretentious name, or through

P.S. The large and ancient Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt is suffering so greatly from Muslim persecution, a growing number of its people fleeing to our own country and elsewhere. Its leader has long been known as "Pope", the present one known not least for his spiritual leadership and his Bible studies — whatever one thinks of some of his views on Anglicans — "pope" of course simply meaning "father".

The Revd Dr John Bunyan
S. John the Baptist's, Canberra
Campbelltown, New South Wales, AUSTRALIA
7 June 2010

The L of it all

I am puzzled by your description in your last week's News Centre of the comments by Diana Butler Bass concerning the Archbishop of Canterbury's Pentecost pastoral letter as being "left-wing". This is an adjective normally used in the field of politics. One could perhaps argue that "liberal" is also a very political term. However, that term has occupied a very broad spectrum of English usage for several centuries, unlike "left-wing," which is a political socialist-related epithet of recent times. I doubt that you intended to allude to Ms. Butler Bass's possible political predilections.

I happen to think that the so-called "doctrine" of Original Sin is an insult to a one's intelligence. Is there an appropriate "L" word for that point of view?

The Reverend Derek Dunwoody
St John the Divine, Victoria.
Victoria, British Columbia, CANADA
9 June 2010

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Earlier letters

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


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