31 Comments on “Benediction Modern Stylee

  1. What Blessed does and is known for. Wait for my book on "Sacramental Worship with Children" (due in the Autumn) which features Anglican liturgy on Eucharistic Adoration for young people. Worship is the way of mission. :-) Fr. S

  2. Given evangelical eucharistic doctrine is receptionist this surely rules out reservation for the purposes of adoration let alone Benediction. Cant see HTB Brighton taking this up..or indeed any Evangelical church Ive come across.

    • Much to their discredit! Clearly one could argue that the BCP etc mean that the C of E is more low than high, but it always seemed curious to me that evangelicals combine viewing themselves as standing firm for historical orthodoxy whilst also having such a low view of the Sacraments. At my evangelical church, we use brief random snippets of a liturgy that is flat out illegal in Scotland for our 'Holy Communion' services. The alleged 'liturgy' is usually rattled through to allow more time for music. I like electric guitar solos and unintentionally homoerotic worship songs as the next guy, but they're hardly more important than the Source and Summit of the Christian life! I know a woman, in leadership at this church, who celebrated the fact (!) that at Elim (ludicrously cultic Todd Bentley-esque televangelist nutter's playground) they sometimes don't bother with Communion in Communion services if the other stuff runs on! If those attitudes are reflective of the 'Orthodox' evangelical vision for the future of Anglicanism then God, literally, help us.

      • Elim (ludicrously cultic Todd Bentley-esque televangelist nutter’s playground)

        Crikey, you just love to stereotype and broadbush don't you?

        Elim is not those things you say. I'm sure there are some members of Elim who are a bit to charismaniac, but all the Elim and AoG churches I've been to have been saner then the church you attend at the moment.

        • Ok, 'nutter's playground' is, I concede, ad hom. 'Televangelist' relates to the vibe – and people coming forward to get healed is pretty 'televangelist' to me. The head pastor of Glasgow Elim (IIRC the guy who claims to be ex-gay) had a representative pop at me on a blog, using the old 'just because you don't understand' yada yada. The solipsistically adolescent inability to see that just because someone doesn't agree with an ideology that, in no way, means that they don't understand it is a natural result of the overvaluation of emotion that charismatics necessarily traffic in. If someone posted here saying that you don't 'understand' liberal theology then you would rightly (however politely!) tell them were to go. Do people who don't jump about and boast of miracles love God less or something? Such a view runs contrary to the noble christian tradition of e.g. monastics & ascetics, but then Charismatics, being willfully stupid, are proud of being ignorant of history or anything else that's by definition intrinsically superior to their deified Emotions.

          >>>>I’ve been to have been saner then the church you attend at the moment.

          Talk about damning with faint praise ;-)

          In all seriousness, one can understand Elim-esque Christians claiming to raise people from the dead. The idea, however, that the burden of proof exists on 'sceptics' to disprove it, not on those making the claims to establish it, is flat out insane by any reasonable standard (emotive 'testimony' 'proves' miracles?!) The fact that the boilerplate charismatic response to that point would be 'but Jesus raised people from the dead!' indicates a horrendous egotism that is thematically (not, I concede, technically) Delusional.

          • In all seriousness, just because one bloke (Todd Bentley, who isn't even Elim) claims to be able to raise people from the dead (I'll believe it when I see it), does that give you the right to broadbrush a whole denomination? By all means have a pop at Bentley, but don't assume that everybody involved in a denomination where one person does something wrong is guilty of the same crime. Kinda like arguing that all Episcopal bishops let through for ordination known child molestors…

            • If Todd Bentley was not representative of charismatic ideology in his claiming to raise people from the dead then, of course, it would be wrong to make generalisations about charismatics per se. The superficial differences between Bentley and Elim are, IMHO, exactly that.

              The head pastor of Glasgow Elim specifically cited raising-the-dead as one of the variety of miracles that he has either witnessed or produced and whose veracity scoffers like me unChristianly refuse to lap up uncritically. So it is perfectly legitimate to criticise Elim and its ideology on that claim, although I concede that other Elims might be less nutty.

              • This is the point where I ask you for a URL. One for the Glasgow pastor and one for every other Elim pastor claiming the same thing. Unless of course you want to stop stereotyping.

                • http://www.gadgetvicar.org.uk/2008/05/revival.htm

                  Note that the Elim pastor is actually *boasting* of his similarity to Bentley making, if anything, the quotes more damning than I first said.

                  And are the other Elims qualitatively different? You'd surely say that orthodox Christian churches necessarily believe that homosexual practise is wrong *even if they have never made any public statements about it*. So, although I of course appreciate the need to factually source statements about denominations and ideologies, my having to trawl the internet to find supporting statements seems a bit strangely suggestive of tactically overraised burdens of proof to require this. Shall however change my references from 'Elim' to 'Glasgow Elim' until I'm sure. But is Glasgow Elim really different from the other ones?

                  • I can't see where he compares himself to Todd Bentley. He certainly seems to have liked him three years ago, but it would be interesting post-divorce etc to go back and ask John what he thought now.

                    And yes, referring only to the church leader you were critiquing and not the whole denomination is probably a VERY good move.

                    • He defends Bentley by pointing out that he and Bentley are both part of a purportedly noble and biblical form of Christian ministry. Do recall someone on the St.Silas egroup defending Bentley because people who are 'considered to be Apostles" (!) have defended him. As if raising up one's snake-oil salesman of choice to the level of St.Peter and St.Paul isn't itself indicative of typical charismatic heresy.

                      Looking at the Elim website, http://www.elim.org.uk/Groups/109312/Who_we_are.a

                      I see that they bang on about miracles in the manner of Glasgow's pastor. Does the wider denomination really draw the line at raising the dead? Whilst I'm perfectly willing to concede that Glasgow's Chief Elim Zoomer is unrepresentative of Elim per se, so far you haven't actually cited any specific points of difference.


                      It seems absurd to say that one should assume that head pastors within a particular, cultic denomination (i.e. so not a broad church like the C of )expounding on theology are offering mere personal opinions rather than reflecting the wider 'mind' of the denomination. What does John specifically say in the URL that you would regard as contrary to the wider views of Elim per se?

                      No offence, but sometimes I get the sense that, if I said 'the Pope condemns homosexuality' you'd ask for links despite the fact that the statement offered is something me, you, and your readers know to be true (not a perfect analogy for this thread; talking about a more general point, and am just giving an opinion, not making an accusation)

              • There are different aspects of the Charismatic movement as touched upon in my blog:


                To quote myself:

                "You don’t need to read Hank Hanegraaff (and everyone probably should) to realise that some aspects of Charismatic Christianity are now firmly approaching ‘Different Religion’ territory. The most dangerous probably being the teaching that Jesus operated merely as a ‘Spirit filled human’ in his earthly ministry, calling the whole orthodox understanding of the incarnation (fully human, fully God) into doubt. Then there are the various beliefs of the Faith and Prophetic movements that every so often slip in through popular Christian writers, not to mention the strange ecstatic forms of self-hypnosis of the New Mystics which Derren Brown is so remarkably good at duplicating. It is no wonder that some raise questions about authenticity."

                The problem is that all flies under the same banner which Charismatics need to take some responsibility for (which is why I write about it). It is much like 'Liberal Catholics' in the CofE ranging from 'Creedal but Inclusive' to 'Non-Realists in Robes'. Maybe I should write about that.

                  • Problem is I went through a period of existential doubt myself a few years back – 'Progressive Christianity' and my Sacramentalism kept me in the faith rather than pushing me out. In the end Tillich out-narrated Cupitt and Kierkegaard out-narrated Tillich.

                    Never preached that 'doubt' from the pulpit, though Article XXVI (although I wasn't wicked!) came to mind.

    • Given evangelical eucharistic doctrine is receptionist

      Read much Luther recently? *Some* evangelicals are receptionists, some are memorialists, some (like this evangelical) are substantialists.

  3. So I get that receptionists are the people who sit behind front desks in the main entrances of corporations, and memorialists are those chaps who make headstones, but what are substantialists?

  4. I look forward to seeing you blessing a congregation with a monstrance Peter!A new dimension to the Evening Service at St Mary Bredin…..

  5. You could borrow the monstrance from St Mildreds ( where I go)..i will happily donate a humeral veil. I am pleased to discover some Anglican evangelicals influenced by classic Lutheran eucharistic doctrine

    like Guest and Cheyney at the Elizabethan Settlement..but historically I think Anglican evangelicals have been influenced more by Calvin. Good stuff on receptionism in the doctrine in the Church of England report pp178 despite its age. if you could win the memorialists over, it would help inter-anglican ecumenism no end!

    • Calvin's doctrine of the Spiritual Presence and weekly communion is still considerably 'higher' than the perceived evangelical memorialist consensus (which I questioned in my blog post).

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