true confessions?

i spent much of this afternoon composing a witty and clever response to this article which is put on the Sydney Anglican website today, but have realised that i seem to have the capacity for only a small amount of righteous indignation at the moment, and i’ve decided that i would like to focus that on this, instead (it’s not too late to ring your MP!).

Two comments, though. i’ve emailed Madeleine Collins, author of the Sydney Anglican article, tonight. She didn’t try to contact me in any way before the article was published, and I would have valued the chance to clarify some misconceptions, and to explain the theology and ecclesiology that is at the foundation of the worship that is part of this project. It seems only fair, since it’s what i would have liked, to offer her the chance to respond to my questions privately.

But if anyone can tell me how to contact Bishop Forsyth*, I’d really like to ask him about the statement he makes,


  1. mike

    I can’t believe there’s no way to comment directly on this article on that site. I could bury something in the forums, but my browsing there today revealed that they are highly edited and vetted for correct public consumption. I want to take issue with so many things, not the least of which is the wholesale dismissal of modern religious art.

    It reinforces so solidly my rejection of what the author describes as “churchianity”.


    Pentecostal is like a whole other planet sometimes. Yet, some of my dearest friends are pentecostal… Is it just Sydney? No… I know some good people in Sydney… Lets just file it under “Diversity” and move on? Do I have to engage with this part of Christianity?

  2. This quote seems strange to me coming from a Canon in the Anglican Church: ???The commandment ???no idols??? should be reiterated today,??? he says. ???People are going back to the sensual, using incense and candles. [But] we live by faith, not by sight. There is a great danger in emphasising those aids. They are flawed tools and not the engine that drives us.” Part of the reason I love my Anglican church is that they don’t shy away from visual and sensual aids.

  3. mike

    Yeah – I thought that too… Odd that an Anglican Canon should say this…

  4. He’s not an Anglican… He’s a Sinneyanglican – there’s a difference 😉

  5. Apart from the fact that the article itself is appalingly written, I think that the comments about that worship are stupid. As a participant in the worship I found it the most meaningful thing I did over Easter and it beat the pants off anything I found in ‘Traditional’ services of worship. I would ask ‘Why are the powers that be in the Church so afraid of so called fringe movements?’ But I suspect I know the answer. Someone should remind them that Jesus was the ultimate fringe dweller.

  6. Dave w

    Hmmm doesn’t it just make your skin crawl!!!

    Well played Cheryl! I might start a discussion around the uni about it…

    I suppose its nice to be seen as ‘dangerous’. Perhaps the 1 Jn 4 lectionary reading from the week just past about love and fear could offer something to say about the fear mongering of that acticle – but what would i know, i shy away from the bible!


    first, pray for us who live/work/act/breathe/create/worship within the geographical bounds of sydney diocess…

    2nd, not all sydney anglicans are that daft, but its very sad that the church wishes to speak so antagonistically and aggressively about the faith of anyone else…

    3rd, the running joke a few years ago between ministry collegues was that our ‘evangelism’ consisted of picking up the ‘post-penticostals’. This was somewhat true, but often said dismissively. YET, there is a true and profound ministry in ex-sydney aglicans! Especially in alt-worship type circles. Perhaps herein lies the motivation behind the article… FEAR???

    Let god be god dammit!

    Keep creating/installing/curating/worshipping – and love it!! 🙂

  7. Cheryl

    thanks for all this. i agree with you about the writing, lisa – i was actually most pissed off for the people who were at the worship – the way it was written up just seemed to cheapen it.

    the author of the article has emailed me back, and we’re still talking…

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  9. A J McMullen

    I went along to the Easter Saturday event at the Mission to Seafarers

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