Ted Olson at Christianity Today has full coverage of the agreement reached between Anglican and Catholic theologians affirming that the Catholic doctrines of the immaculate conception and bodily assumption of Mary are "consonant" with Holy Scripture. The word "consonant" sounds like a weasel word to me. It can't mean "taught by" Holy Scripture because the Bible says nothing at all about either doctrine. And it can't mean "consistent with" because the Bible does not teach that Mary was born without original sin or that her body was taken directly to heaven upon her death. "Consonant" in this context must mean something like, "We can't find anything in the Bible that contradicts it so it must be (might be? could be?) true. And it's okay to believe it if you want to." Read more details here and here. Olson summarizes this "dialogue" very succinctly: "If the dialogue had been a baseball game, the Vatican would have won in a shutout." Score it Catholics 75, Anglicans 0.

J. C. Ryle, the 19th-century evangelical Anglican bishop, must be spinning in his grave.

I don't blame the Catholics for this. They're just being true to their beliefs. I blame the Anglicans for selling out in the name of unity. I come back again and again to the words of E. J. Carnell, "It is better to divide over truth than to unite around error."


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