Friday, June 23, 2006

My Track Record Quoting Lutherans: 2-0

After having gotten Pastor William Weedon in trouble by quoting him earlier, I may have inadvertently done the same for Fr. John Fenton. One of our fellow bloggers (an Anglican, I'm told) wrote a rejoinder to my recent post on Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi in a way that attributed some of my words (and others I didn't write) to Fr. Fenton. To clear the air, I posted this comment on his site:

A few points concerning your article are in order:

1. Fr. Fenton is not part of my blog, I explicitly noted I was quoting "his blog," which I link in the article and on my homepage.

2. Fr. Fenton does not "enjoy orders" in the "Eastern Orthodox Church"; in the portion of his blog I quoted he mentions being pastor of Zion Lutheran Church (LCMS) in Detroit, Michigan. I also link to Zion's page in that entry.

3. The Western Rite does not use St. John Chrysostom's liturgy at all, as that is Byzantine (Eastern) Rite. We celebrate the Liturgy of St. Gregory and the Liturgy of St. Tikhon.

4. The first quotation you attribute to Fr. Fenton was written by me.

5. Neither Pastor Fenton nor I claim anywhere in this post that the "Church should adhere strictly to the oldest litugies," nor that "liturgy should be unchanged." Both he and I state a church needs an enforced standard of lex orandi and a lex credendi that expresses its theology. The explicit message of both his post and mine is that one without the other will ultimately lead to the loss of both. The point seems self-evident from the examples cited in the post and many others. One would be wrong to celebrate a putatively "ancient liturgy" if it does not meet these standards and/or is not approved by one's hierarchy. And there are certain structures common to all ancient liturgies that one must retain to be a part of any recognizably historical Christian worship tradition (e.g., the Creed, the Sursum Corda, the Canon, etc.). To jettison all this in favor of a "praise and worship" multimedia fest, where one may never recite the Creed nor even partake of communion, calls into question whether this order of "worship" is fitting or embodies ecclesiastical "worship" at all. At a minimum, its content-free form hardly requires of its members any Christian orthodoxy (lex credendi) at all.

With these strawmen swept aside, I'm not sure if we disagree at all. If we do, I certainly respect your POV but I respectfully disagree. Thank you for dropping by the blog, and I hope you'll make a return trip.


Blogger Drew said...

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4:46 PM  

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