Back to my Anglican hobbyhorse

SeoulNaveAs Terry hinted at the beginning of this month, I have taken a new job with the Anglican Communion Network. Since the early 1990s, my greatest passion as a writer has involved the moral and theological debates within the Episcopal Church.

I was born an Episcopalian because my Roman Catholic father and Southern Baptist mother both knew they wanted a church for themselves and their two boys, but also knew they needed a liturgical via media. During the 1990s I sometimes experienced a love-hate relationship with the Episcopal Church, and I wondered if I ever would have joined it had I grown up in, say, an evangelical Lutheran church. Today that relationship is more of a lover’s quarrel.

Because I will be engaged in an activist’s role with the ACN, I will cut back radically on how often I write about Anglican and Episcopal matters for GetReligion. Indeed, I expect to write on such matters only if I can do so without setting off my Conflict of Interest Meter (which I try to keep fine-tuned).

I will, however, write about magazine articles on many other topics that touch on the concerns of this blog.

I’ll always be grateful to Terry for making me part of this project when I was leaving the full-time staff of Christianity Today, but I’m also eager to rejoin the Anglican discussions I’ve been less involved in for the past several years. I’ll still appear here, albeit it with less frequency.

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  • Jill

    Doug, sorry we’ll have fewer of your observations and commentary here, but “the Network” does need you. Blessings! :)

  • Darrell Grizzle

    Doug, I don’t think it would necessarily be a “conflict of interest” for you to write about Anglican/Episcopal matters here. Yours is one of the few conservative voices in the Anglican communion that I actually respect and trust (the only other one I can think of would be N. T. Wright). As a flaming liberal Episcopalian, it’s important to me to hear and to pay attention to voices like yours.

  • Kyle


    I’ve enjoyed your work both here and in the pages of Christianity Today, and consider well your commentary.

    Best wishes in your new work.

  • Will

    Er, don’t you mean you were “baptized an Anglican”? Even the PECUSA Constitution, which defines members as “all persons baptized by this church” (denying me an opportunity to get out) does not claim that anyone is BORN in the denomination.

  • Merle Hansen

    Doug – Since I belong now to an ACN affiliated parish, I’m delighted you’ll be writing as an activist for the Network. My rector (and friend) at my former parish, thought well of you and your reporting even though he’s a revisionist. You seem to be even-handed and fair in what you report. I pray that even “flaming liberal” Episcopalians will read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest what you write

  • Douglas LeBlanc

    > Er, don’t you mean you were “baptized an Anglican”?

    Fair point, Will. I was speaking culturally rather than theologically. From the moment of my birth it was clear that I would attend an Episcopal church. I was baptized into the church only a few days later, as it wasn’t clear whether I would survive a staph infection.

  • Kevin Powell


    While I haven’t always agreed with you, I’ve found your articles on the ECUSA woes insightful and well-written. Thanks for all your hard work and enjoy your new job!


  • tmatt

    My hope is that Doug can, from time to time, write about what it is like to be on the other side of the reporter’s notebook in such a hot media storm. Now, I know that he cannot burn reporters by dissecting stories in which he was involved as a source. But Doug is going to be at major events that draw major coverage. I do hope he can air his views about that coverage in a general way.

  • Terry Whalin

    Keep up the good work, Doug. I enjoy reading your work and hope you can return here often.

  • Steve Oldham

    Sorry to see you go, but ACN can certainly use your support. I’ve followed your work from when you lived in KC to your job at CT. You have always been very even-handed, especially when it came to matters Episcopal. I’ll be sure to follow your work at ACN.

  • Bob Berta

    Sorry I just read your “bio” now as you cut back. I can now guess you were source of many stories I read here. Good work. And “nice trying”.
    That last comment I say especially as you focus now more on the “Anglican Wars”. I wish you God-speed there. The faith’s orthodoxy must be defended, and that front of the battle is certainly where bullets are flying.
    But a personal thought. As one who seems to share your history, we’ve come to a different conclusion on cause and remedy. For you see, when boiled all down, the remedies Anglican orthodox seek are toward recognition that “Sola Scriptura” never did work. It always required interpretation. And that implies a “magisterium” and a “dogma”, a form of which y’all now seek to create. Four hundred years later.
    And one place you turn for comfort? The rock solid support of Rome. Perhaps a time to consider Christ’s “great prayer”, just before he gave the “great commission”: Ut Unum Sint??
    But don’t misread my thrust: I pray you an honest God-speed in your efforts to reclaim the Anglican-branch for its mostly orthodox roots.
    Bob Berta
    La Canada, CA