Constitution of the Anglican Mission in the Americas III

Moving on through the document, we find a continual borrowing from Roman Catholic sources that becomes outright plagiarism, which will become obvious below.The Constitution says:

We are a voluntary association of individuals, families and faith communities committed to the advancement of mission and ministry. We have been called in the Church to exercise a missionary mandate from our College of Consultors.

The phrase “missionary mandate” echoes Pope John Paul II’s encyclical “Redemptoris mission: On the permanent validity of the Church’s missionary mandate” issued in 1990. Also, the Catholic Catechism at Section 849 discusses “The missionary mandate” extensively. The Constitution continues:

In our common vocation, each member is called primarily to holiness of life rooted in the Baptismal Covenant

This echoes phrases such as “The call to holiness is rooted in Baptism” by Pope John Paul II as seen at this link for example. It is a common turn of phrase in theology, and so is not terribly surprising to see it here. But while these kind of borrowings from Roman sources can be understood as the zeal of someone for conformity with un-Anglican norms, the borrowing becomes more explicit.
The Oxford American Dictionary of Current English defines “plagiarize” as to “take and use (the thoughts, writings, inventions, etc., of another person) as one’s own.” With that in mind, witness this section in the AMiA Constitution:

By our lives as a mission society, we seek first to glorify the Triune God. We follow in the footsteps of the apostles who were filled with the commitment to the Great Commission to spread everywhere the knowledge and love of Jesus. We live and work that God’s name may be hallowed, that his kingdom come, that his holy will be done (Mt 6:9-10).

And compare it to this section from the “Rule of Life for the Missionary Servants of the Most Blessed Trinity and the Missionary Servants of the Most Holy Trinity.”

3. By our lives as Missionary Servants we seek first to glorify the Triune God. We follow in the footsteps of the apostles who, filled with the Holy Spirit, went forth from the Cenacle to spread everywhere the knowledge and love of Jesus. We live and work that God’s name may be hallowed, that his kingdom come, that his holy will be done (Mt 6:9-10).

With very minor variations, this is word for word the same! I don’t see any attribution in the document to this source. I would call that plagiarism. It is followed by:

In all our apostolic commitments, we recognize the authority of our College of Consultors, the Apostolic Vicar, the Conference of Bishops and their special role as signs of unity, and as pastors in the local (or particular) churches.

Again, this is lifted directly from the Rule linked above, with modifications for differing government structures:

In all our apostolic commitments, we recognize the authority of the bishops and their special role as signs of unity and as pastors in the local churches.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.