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Washington State July 28, 2011

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Could not get Amanda Park picture on

Amanda Park

the other post so here it is!


Seattle (1) July 28, 2011

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River Chicago in, er... Chicago

After a very long  journey with more time spent in airports than in planes, I got here! (Managed a quick trip into Chicago too as I had to wait 8 hours between planes there.)

Went to the Pacific Coast yesterday – seemed sad to come all this way and not go there. The logging industry is very big here – and forestry is managed carefully – they are very proud of this here.

The forest  / mountains to the west of Seattle are spectacular – stopped at the small town of Amanda Park (I think I taught her brothers Chris and John).

Putting the baptism clock back July 19, 2011

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One thing that nearly got Synod excited last week was the Bradford diocese motion on admitting people to communion without their being confirmed.

We already do this as regards children (in many dioceses) and the Bradford motion was not necessarily as helpful as it might have been (in terms of how it was phrased and what it asked for).

However, it elicited a response from the Faith and Order Commission which was frankly bizarre. This in turm was connected to a book on initiation which FAOC has just published. I wrote a review of this for the Church Times (which thay had not asked for and which they did not publish) – it is posted here instead. Basically, FAOC want to overturn the consensus that baptism is full Christian sacramental initiation and go back to a time when we thought confirmation (by a bishop) was essential too.

Journey of Christian Initiation book review

July Synod July 10, 2011

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We are on day two of the York General Synod. Everyone has been commenting on how unexciting the agenda is, but there are two liturgy debates later this weekend and two debates on ministry training – how much more exciting can it get?!

Yesterday (Friday) was introductory and routine stuff – reports on where we are at with progress of legislation etc.. Debate on the agenda (i.e. people get to comment on what we are discussing and what is not on the agenda but they think ought to be) – much comment on Sudan. We receive a message from Graham Kings (bishop of Sherbourne) who is out there and today ++Rowan asked for our support for him to write to the Foreign Secretary expressing our concern about the situation.

Last night was questions – some highlights (well, for me…):

  1. the bishop of Chichester pretty much admitted that the Faith and Order Advisory Group had done work on confimation and produced a report / book on this without really talking to liturgical scholars – more on this after tomorrow’s debates on confirmation.
  2.  clergy ordained in e.g. Anglican dioceses overseas can officiate in England by obtaining the permission of the Archbishops of York and Canterbury. For anypone ordained by a woman bishop, this permission is never given.

Today we had a brilliant presidential address by ++Rowan then a morning in groups to reflect on how we do and might work as a Synod. My group much better than I’d hoped – much thanks to the bishop of Truro who chaired it well.

This afternoon we threw out the proposals to fix extras for weddings – Synod flexing its muscles after not being able to vote on much yet. Tonight a good but uncontroversial debate on mission action planning.