Bishop Phineas Angus Rody will not recognise the new “Anglican” North American Province. He thinks the founders of this province are bigoted and clearly prejudiced against homosexuals. “They regularly quote Leviticus 18:22 against homosexual activity, but they just pick and choose a verse out of context. Three verses earlier is a whole teaching for heterosexuals – a quarter of the time men and women cannot even sit on the same couch or lie on the same bed. Why are they not teaching about that? You cannot be a true Anglican unless you teach the full bible, not just fit in with people who find homosexuality icky – Leviticus 18:19 is pretty icky too – why is that not quoted?”
Having first thought that the new province might become a home for full-Bible-believing Anglicans, he regards himself as not so much splitting from this split, but this new province as “watered-down, crypto-liberal, and world-compromising”. He is starting not a new province, but a whole new communion. In fact he doesn’t regard this as a “new” communion at all, but the “true” communion.
A parallel Anglican Communion?
He titles himself “the Most Reverend and Right Honourable Phineas Angus Rody” and claims he is the “True Archbishop of Canterbury”. Unlike the pope (one time there were three all claiming to be pope), I know of no recorded “anti”-Archbishop of Canterbury. But these are strange and stressful times. With the recent announcement of a parallel “Anglican” province comes the announcement of a whole new Anglican Communion. Only this time claiming it is not new – in fact it is the true one!
A key to the formation of the new North American Province is Leviticus 18:22 “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.” Bishop Phineas Angus Rody, who has apparently come out of nowhere, stresses that Leviticus 18 must be read, taught, and followed “as a whole”. “These so-called Anglicans are clearly prejudiced against homosexuals, taking Leviticus as a whole is even more challenging to heterosexuals – yet we never hear about that,” says Bishop Phineas. He highlights Leviticus 18:19 which teaches a woman is impure for seven days from the start of her menstrual period.
“We are the post-colonial Anglican Communion. I first thought I could work in partnership with Akinola [referring to Archbishop Peter Akinola of Nigeria who has also removed the need to be in communion with Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury from Nigeria’s church constitution] but then found he was mixing his seeds on his lawn. He is not even disciplining his clergy who have mules [Leviticus 19:19]! Duncan [former Episcopal Church Diocese of Pittsburgh Bishop Robert Duncan] wears a chimere mixing wool and polyester, and a rochet of cotton and polyester. I know it’s convenient and comfortable, but how can I extend the right hand of fellowship to such a person? How can you lead worship with integrity with such a person? How can you preach vehemently about one verse of Leviticus, and do that in robes clearly in breach of another verse in Leviticus [19:19]?”
“This is far bigger than people’s usual parody about God hating prawns. Teachings like the impurity of women during 7 days each cycle are eternally-binding moral precepts. We have heard far too much about inclusiveness on the one hand, and holiness on the other, and far too little about menstruation!”
PA Rody clearly believes in his movement. He has contacted Laurie Goodstein of The New York Times, to get a front page story. “That a small splinter group, of a denomination forming 1% of North America’s population warranted a front page story in The New York Times means there is something far more newsworthy here. Duncan may have said “The Lord is displacing the Episcopal Church” but here, clearly the Lord is displacing the Anglican Communion.” PA Rody hopes that people will flood from the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) in their tens. “If we can get a small percentage of that small percentage of that one percent we will soon have enough to form a grain of salt to begin to make a difference.” Meanwhile he and his wife are working hard to produce a constitution, canons, and a catechism.
More can be found on the website of the True Anglican Communion
TAC also comes before TEC in any up-to-date list for religious seekers.