March 29, 2017

May 8, 2013

Why Rick. - Another Candidate for Archbishop of Sydney

Following on from last Friday’s announcement of Glenn Davies’ candidature, another candidate has been presented for the role of Archbishop of Sydney - Rick Smith.

The strategy of the Why Rick campaign is notably different from that of those supporting Glenn Davies. Whereas the Davies website seeks to set out a comprehensive argument as to why Davies ought to be Archbishop, Why Rick has opted for another approach - that of an ongoing conversation.

Rick Smith

As senior minister of Naremburn Cammeray Anglican ChurchRev Canon Rick Smith has proved himself ready to be our Archbishop.å

We’d like to send you a series of relevant video emails so you can get to know him better and understand why we are so keen for the synod to elect him. There will be interviews with Rick on a range of topics and commentary from senior church leaders, synod representatives and members of Rick’s staff and church.

Synod members are invited to sign up to receive regular emails containing information about Smith. The strategy is to slowly have a “conversation” with the electorate in this election (i.e. synod members) about Rick Smith and why he is the best choice for Archbishop.

letter sent to Synod members [pdf] has the personal endorsement of 22 of the members of the Sydney Synod Standing Committee. Standing Committee has  56 persons, of whom 5 are bishops (including Glenn Davies) and a further 3 are Sydney Diocesan Secretariat staff (the equivalent of “civil servants”) and, of course Rick Smith himself. Thus at the very start Rick Smith has the support of 22 out of 47 members who could express an opinion on the subject. I am sure there will be more to follow.

I want to do my best to report to my readers on this campaign so I think it’s also important that I be transparent.

I think Glenn Davies is a good candidate - a candidate that many dioceses in the world would be pleased to have. But I think Rick Smith is an even better candidate. Over the next few weeks I’m looking forward to telling you why that is. In the meantime you could always go and subscribe to the Why Rick updates.

I like this approach, it’s helpfully conversational and seeking to have that conversation with the right people; members of Synod, not simply everyone they can reach on facebook. Most of all, I like Rick. I’ve got to know him over the past few years and I’ve been impressed. I also know many of the people who work for him and what they say impresses me even more.

I should leave you, however, with the closing paragraph of the introduction letter:

May we suggest that this would be a good time to request our congregations to be  praying for our deliberations.


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You are blessed indeed if you have two good candidates.

[1] Posted by Katherine on 5-9-2013 at 07:33 AM · [top]  Men (thankfully there) campaigning to be Archbishop. The two pictured wearing suits. I’m sure these are good men, but this all seems very strange to me.

[2] Posted by via orthodoxy on 5-9-2013 at 07:59 AM · [top]

It’s been my impression that Sydney clergy seldom wear clericals, like my ACNA parish’s very low-church rector who only wears a collar for Sunday services (sigh).  Looks too “Roman,” don’t you know.

[3] Posted by evan miller on 5-9-2013 at 08:48 AM · [top]

So much for being called to the ministry - especially the office of bishop.  Marketing campaigns for church positions are tawdry and shabby if you ask me.

[4] Posted by Nikolaus on 5-9-2013 at 05:28 PM · [top]

Evan- yes, we seldom wear clericals. We still open the Bible and call people to love and trust Jesus.

Nikolaus, it’s more a symptom of the system here. There is no nominations board so what you’re seeing is people in Sydney raising various names in order to have them scrutinised by Synod. Less shabby, I would suggest, than you think.

[5] Posted by David Ould on 5-10-2013 at 03:23 AM · [top]

Tonight’s big event in Sydney was David Ould’s induction as senior minister of Glenquarie parish. He stood before his new congregation and made some extremely heavy promises.
For example ” bring all such as are or will be committed to your care, to that understanding in the faith and knowledge of God, and to that maturity in Christ, which leaves no place among you for error in religion or viciousness in life”. And that was only a little bit of what he promised.
But he was cheerful though solemn… and he did look good in clericals.

[6] Posted by obadiahslope on 5-10-2013 at 07:36 AM · [top]

David, I look forward with interest to your posts as to why you think Rick Smith is a better candidate than Glenn Davies.  I don’t know either of them, although of course I know of Davies.

But I would hope that both candidates (and any others that throw their hat into the ring) provide clear and objective statements as to where they stand. 

Having said that, I know that my main concern will be with whether they have a strong heart for the gospel.  What I mean by that is that Peter Jensen held a number of beliefs prior to his election with which I disagreed, but I found that in practice his strong heart for the gospel overrode some of those things and he proved flexible and deep-thinking in office.  Some particular examples of that:

(a) he became an enthusiastic supporter of the fledgeling international movement that would eventually become Gafcon, at a time when most Sydney-ites tended to be focussed inward;

(b) although assenting to the idea of lay presidency of Holy Communion, he never actually authorised any lay ministers, thus avoiding putting unnecessary strain on our relations with other orthodox dioceses and provinces around the world.

(c) he gave no direct support to those in Sydney who think that the protestant reformation did not go far enough, but in effect encouraged them to move out of Anglicanism and form their own churches (in fairness, I think it was clear well before his election that he would go this way).

We can only pray that the next archbishop will be as strongly used in Sydney Diocese, in Australian society, and in the wider Anglican communion, as Peter Jensen has been.

[7] Posted by MichaelA on 5-12-2013 at 06:30 PM · [top]

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