Just another tale of unilateral revision and chaos.
From a friend in St. Louis:
I hadn’t been to church for several weeks, but I went today. People, for some reason, do not use the prayer book, preferring instead to print out the service (so as not to confuse the newcomers. I noticed in the weekly service print out that in the Nicene Creed , the filoque clause, was missing and there was a strange change in the incarnation statement. I know that there has been a theological difference between the Orthodox church and the west over ” proceeds from the Father and the Son. Has this been resolved by the Episcopal church? Changes of this nature by local parishes or dioceses, without authortization, smacks of true heresy to me? What is going on here???
Now, I’m not against pamphlets or projection to help folks navigate the “take one from Column A, two from Column B” mess that is Rite II in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. But we are NOT to change its words - they are “the doctrine and discipline of THIS church,” to use a phrase much loved by our new hierarchs.
At this point, the intent is to drop the filioque clause from the Creed, but it ain’t happened yet and won’t until a new BCP is authorized.
Here’s where things stand on that clause of the Creed:
In an action of major significance, the 1985 General Convention resolved “that in recognition of the Lambeth 1978 call for Churches of the Anglican Communion to consider removing the filioque (“and [from] the Son”) from the Nicene Creed, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church expresses its intention to restore in liturgical usage the original form of the Nicene Creed as promulgated by the Council of Chalcedon (i.e. without the filioque), provided that such restoration is endorsed and commended by the Anglican Consultative Council and the Lambeth Conference.” It should be noted that the General Convention was asked to decide only on the historical - canonical question concerning the filioque, not on the doctrinal question, which is to be discussed further in the dialogue (Blue Book, 1985, p. 28, Bulletin 71). On this same understanding the 1988 Lambeth Conference voted to recommend “to the Provinces of the Anglican Communion that in future liturgical revisions the Nicene-Constantinople Creed be printed without the filioque clause” and the ACC endorsed this in 1991. The 1994 General Convention further resolved to reaffirm its intention to remove the words “and of the Son” from the third paragraph of the Nicene Creed at the next revision of the Book of Common Prayer.
I shudder to ask what my friend meant by “strange change in the incarnation statement,” which should say “For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man.” That’s supposed to be this big ol’ foundational Anglican article of faith, by which we affirm our freedom to use all kinds of music, art and liturgical flourishes to enhance worship. Wonder why that’s in the dumper now.
Anyway, here we are. Everybody makes up whatever he/she/neutral pronoun desires as she/neutral pronoun/(maybe he here and there) feels like.
“True heresy” indeed, my friend.
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