2020 wasn’t a great year for most folks, but I don’t need to tell you that. Perhaps a small, bright point in that horrible epoch was The North American Anglican: we had our best year by a significant margin. Our readership grew almost tenfold, not only among readers in North America, but across the Anglican Communion. We published some of our best work, too, and these five pieces are a good reflection of that. Here’s to 2021, and another year of engaging with the treasures of orthodox Anglicanism.
5. The Via Media—Between What and What? An article by M.H. Turner at Mere Orthodoxy spawned one of the more lively discussions in the Anglican blog sphere when it asked why Anglicanism tends to be a gateway to Roman Catholicism. Many responses were written, and two of them here at TNAA were some of our most popular pieces in 2020. This one was from the Rev. Dr. Gerald McDermott. In it, he lays out an argument for a reformed catholicism, “not Roman but patristic, and that of the undivided Church of the first millennium of Christianity.”
4. Why Do Anglicans Become Roman Catholic?: A Response by an Evangelical Expat In our number four spot is another response to Turner from Candice Gage. Like Dr. McDermott, Candice views Anglicanism as a via media, “a way to participate in the form and rites of the broader Church Catholic while avoiding those specifically Roman errors.” This article particularly resonated with many of our readers who grew up in the American Evangelical tradition, but discovered Anglicanism as a way to tap into the historic Church. Don’t miss Turner’s response with our friends over at Mere Orthodoxy!
3. Did the Oxford Movement Ruin Everything? In this well-researched piece, Brian Miller challenges a narrative among Reformed Anglicans that the Oxford Movement opened a Pandora’s Box within the Church of England, weakened the orthodox party, and allowed the liberals to gain enough of a foothold that they were able to grow in power until the present day. A good read for anyone who loves a bit of obscure Anglican history.
2. Is Anglicanism Reformed? In a similarly revisionist vein to Brian’s, but arguing for a different time period, Bp. Peter Robinson of the UECNA writes on the Reformed nature of classical Anglicanism. This piece ended up being a controversial one, and it, like the others in the top four pieces of the year, demonstrate that the battle for a cohesive Anglican identity continues to rage on.
1. How Has Modernity Shifted the Women’s Ordination Debate? However, the piece that dominated all others by a significant margin is this one from Alastair Roberts discussing how modernity has shaped the women’s ordination debate. In it, he explains just how much our current culture has influenced the debate, far beyond what we comprehend consciously. It is an important piece, not only for discussion surrounding the ordination of women, but because it begs the question, what else has been influenced?