Friday, November 30, 2012

Women Bishops and Anglican Identity

The turmoil in the Church of England and the wider Anglican Communion over the ordination of women as priests and bishops reflects a widening gulf between different views of Anglican identity. Who are we? A sovereign “denomination” able to determine faith and order by majority voting in local and national synods? Or part of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church yearning for visible unity with the whole, and accepting the constraint in matters of faith and order that such a self-understanding places on us? 

It seems logical, given the certainty of our traditional formularies on this point, that when a church of the Anglican Communion decides to “go it alone” as far as ordination is concerned, the very least it is morally obliged to do is make proper jurisdictional provision for those loyal Anglicans who - in all conscience and along with the wider Catholic Church - cannot at this time affirm with certainty the resulting orders and sacraments. That’s really what the debate going on in England at the present time is all about. 

Two years ago - in Advent 2010 - the Rt Rev’d Jack Iker, Bishop of Fort Worth, reflected on the issue of who we are as Anglicans. Here is what he said:

I invite us all to look beyond the surface level of our Anglican identity, with its temptation to denominationalism, and go back to our heritage as catholic Christians. In those . . . constitutional provisions that I quoted in the previous article, the Protestant Episcopal Church in the USA, the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, and the Diocese of Fort Worth, all declare that we are a fellowship within, or a branch, of the one holy catholic and apostolic Church, maintaining and propagating the faith and order of the historic Church throughout the ages.

This means that we are not members of a sectarian, Protestant denomination, but of the Catholic Church. Remember, the Church of England, which came to be known as Anglican, existed before the Reformation and traces its roots back to the Patristic age of the early Christian Church. This same Church, which predated the arrival of Augustine and his missionaries from Rome in the sixth century, is continuous with the Church of England that emerged from the sixteenth century Reformation. Reformed, yes, but not a new denomination; the Church of England still maintained the sacraments, creeds and holy orders of the undivided church of the early centuries, before the Great Schism of West and East in 1054.

Knowing this, Archbishop of Canterbury Geoffrey Fisher famously said, “We have no doctrine of our own. We only possess the Catholic doctrine of the Catholic Church enshrined in the Catholic Creeds, and these creeds we hold without addition or diminution. We stand firm on that rock.” And to that we might add that Anglicanism has no Scriptures of its own, no sacraments of its own, no holy orders of its own – just those of the Catholic Church that we have received. Fisher was right, as Anglicans we have no faith of our own.

Like the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church, orthodox Anglicans uphold the historic faith and order of the undivided Church. We are nothing more nor less than Catholic Christians, seeking to be faithful to the teaching of the early Church Fathers and the great Ecumenical Councils of the first centuries of Christian witness. With St. Vincent of Lerins, we affirm that the Catholic faith is that which has been believed “everywhere, always, and by all.” Wherever you find departures from this given faith and received order, you will find sectarianism, heresy and error.

With this in mind, we understand that the divided and fractured nature of Anglicanism today has been caused by heretical innovations and departures from the Church’s historic faith and practice. 

. . . deviations from the historic teaching of the Church have led to a serious state of brokenness and impaired Communion throughout Anglicanism.

In the Diocese of Fort Worth we stand against that. Our commitment as an orthodox Anglican diocese is to the faith and order of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. We seek to do nothing other than maintain and propagate the faith once delivered to the saints, which is rooted in Holy Scriptures and one with the Apostolic Teaching of the ancient Church.

Go HERE for the entirety of Bishop Iker's article.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Oscar Romero on the Kingship of Christ

Here are some words of the martyr, Archbishop Oscar Romero (1917-1980). They are from The Violence of Love, compiled and translated by James R. Brockman SJ, pp. 148-150. (The forward to the collection is by Henri Nouwen.) 

The human race of the twentieth century
has climbed to the moon,
has uncovered the secret of the atom,
and what else may it not discover?

The Lord’s command is fulfilled:
Subdue the earth!
But the absolute human dominion over the earth
Will be what is proclaimed today:
bringing all things of heaven and earth together in Christ.

Then humanity hallowed will put under God’s reign
this world, which is now the slave of sin,
and set it at the feet of Christ,
and Christ at the feet of God.

This is the bringing together that was God’s design
before the world existed.
And when History comes to its end,
this will be God’s fulfilment:

the sum of all things.
All that history has been,
all that we do ourselves,
good or bad,
will be measured by God’s design;
and there will remain only those who have labored
to put things under Christ’s rule.

All that has tried to rebel against God’s plan in Christ
is false.
It will not last;
It will be for history’s waste heap. (July 15, 1979)

Christ is presented to us as the shepherd king,
king and shepherd of all the world’s peoples,
of all of history.

He holds the key to history’s outcome
And to the crises of its peoples . . .
It is for us, hierarchy and people, to proclaim
the eternal, sole, and universal kingship of Christ
and to bring it about
that all peoples, families, and persons submit to him.
His is not a despotic regime,
but a regime of love . . .  (July 22, 1979)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Language of Kingship?

This is an edited excerpt from Kimberlee Conway Ireton's book, The Circle of Seasons: Meeting God in the Church Year. 

Last Sunday - the last of the church year - celebrated the Kingship of Christ. As we end the year, it is only fitting to celebrate the eschatological reality that Christ will come again, in power and glory, to reign over all the earth. 

I understand that many people cringe at this language of kingship, perhaps because of its connotations of dominance, hierarchy, and colonialism. And I sympathize. Even the best of our earthly kings is fallen, and too many of them have been power hungry tyrants. 

But when I look at the kind of king Jesus was, I see the courageous and loving leader that every earthly ruler should aspire to, and it makes me long for such a king, a King who would come among his subjects to live as one of them and then allow them to execute him rather than calling on the power at his disposal. In Jesus, there was not a particle of dominance, nor hierarchy, nor colonialism. Only love, deep and wide and poured out in life and death. 

On the feast of Christ the King, we celebrate the day when Christ’s great love will be fully realized on earth, the day when our King will return. He will right all wrongs. He will judge the living and the dead. He will bind up the broken hearted. He will give sight to the blind. He will heal the lame. He will set the prisoners free. He will establish justice once and for all, justice tempered with mercy so that all life might flourish under his reign. 

Can I just say: I can hardly wait for that day! I long for that coming, for an end to all that is wrong with the world—all that is wrong with me—and the restoration of all things, all people, all relationships. I long for Jesus to gather all things to Himself, things in Heaven and things on earth and transform them—us!—into the vision He had for us from the beginning of time. I long for this great eucatastrophe. No more sin, no more sickness, no more suffering, no more slavery or exploitation or pain. Only goodness and glory so grand it’s beyond all I can ask or imagine. 

It is this victorious Second Coming that we celebrate on the final Sunday of the church year, a liturgical entering into the eschatological reality of Christ’s return. 

And so we come full circle. We end the church year proclaiming and celebrating the now of Christ’s coming even as we live in the not-yet of waiting for Him to come. Next week, a new church year begins, and we will circle into Advent again, living into our longing for God to come to us, crying with generations of God’s people: Come, Lord Jesus! 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Creation & outward signs of encounter

We are physical beings who live in the physical world, and we communicate invisible realities such as love, trust, friendship, forgiveness and gratitude with each other in physical ways. 

When parents hug their children, they express in a warm and reassuring way the love they have for them. Friends shake hands after a fight or an argument in order to conveys a sense of goodwill and reconciliation. Embracing one another communicates friendship. Sex in marriage communicates and deepens the love husband and wife have for each other. We all use a range of tangible and physical ways of expressing the inner reality of ourselves in our relationships with others - at home, at work and among our friends.


In the Gospels we see that Jesus, “God in human Flesh”, reached out in love to all kinds of people in order to heal them, to reconcile them, to pour his love into their lives. He used tangible and physical actions to reassure them that something real was happening. He touched them in blessing and prayer. He laid his hands on the sick. He sent his disciples out to anoint the sick with oil. And he told the apostles to continue his ministry by using water in Baptism, and bread and wine in Holy Communion. Through the physical presence of Jesus, his actions and the created things used by him, men and women received God’s blessing, love and power. They were made whole.

The earthly, physical body of Jesus, then, was an “outward sign” of God’s saving, healing, reconciling presence among his people. 

That’s exactly what a SACRAMENT is. 


Jesus no longer reaches out and touches people in his historical body, because, since his ascension, he is no longer present in that way. But, as we have already seen, he is present in a tangible way through his new Spirit-filled community of love, the Church, which is also called his “body.” We read in the New Testament:

“[Jesus] is . . . the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fulness of him who fills all in all.” 
- Ephesians 1:22-23

“[Jesus] is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the first-born from the dead . . .”
- Colossians 1:17-18
“. . . just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body . . . the body does not consist of one member but of many . . . Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.
- 1 Corinthians 12:12-14, 27

Taking up this theme, the Catechism of the Catholic Church says:

“The Church in this world is the sacrament of salvation, the sign and the instrument of the communion of God and men”
- Catechism 444 

This is what Abu Daoud writes about the connection between the resurrection of Jesus and the Church:

“Christianity is built on the conviction that out of the most radical and disastrous despair, God turned the tables on the Empire and the Temple that killed his Son, and his resurrection was nothing less than the victory of God. The power of life in that resurrection flowed out into a community called out by God, the Church. That community was called to be a sacrament of secret life and an imperfect but real embassy of God’s reign, which, like yeast in dough, spreads and leavens.”
- Abu Daoud  in St Francis Magazine Vol 8, No 2 April 2012

Through the physical presence in the world of his many membered body, as well as in the sacred actions of that body, Jesus continues to touch people’s lives today. These “actions” are called sacraments.


A sacrament is “a tangible encounter with the risen Jesus.”

We use the word tangible in these notes because it means “involving the senses.” The word encounter is used to describe a meeting with the risen Jesus in which he shares with us personally his life and his love - just as he did with people in Gospel times.

Of course, his greatest act of self giving love was his death on the cross, and that is why we often say that the sacraments make the victory of the cross effective in our lives.

While the whole of life is  sacramental, there are special moments when the risen Jesus acts through his many-membered body, his new community of love, to share his life with us. These are the seven Sacraments, channels of his love and power, through which he forgives us, renews us, equips us, deepens our union with him, and pours his risen life into our waiting hearts. 

An older definition of  “sacrament” is: 

“. . . an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace.”

While this definition may seem a bit more “static” than the way we have been speaking, it is quite useful because it emphasises that each sacrament has two parts: the outward sign which relates to our senses, and the inward grace, the special blessing we receive from God through that particular sacrament.  

The sacraments assure us that Jesus really is touching our lives.

In more technical language, a theologian wrote:

“Upon the Cross the God-Man intended his act of redemption for all without exception. The sacrifice of the Cross, in all its eternal-actuality in mystery, is still intended for all people, for each one personally. Now it is this personal intention of Christ’s act of redemption for a particular human being that is brought out in the sacraments . . .

“As the personal redemptive act of Christ in his Church, a sacrament is therefore the personal approach of Christ to a particular human being. In the fullest sense of the word, a sacrament is the pledge of Christ’s availability to a particular individual; the tangible pledge of his willing readiness to enter upon an encounter.”
- Edward Schillebeeckx, in Christ the Sacrament of Encounter with God, p 80

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Creation renewed

According to the Old Testament, when we pushed God out of our lives in order to run things our own way, we ended up undermining all our relationships. But that’s not all. There were serious cosmic consequences. The created universe itself was wounded and became disordered.

If we keep reading through the Old Testament, however, we discover that the healing of these wounds, and the reconciliation of all creatures with one another, are aspects of the salvation and ultimate restoration promised by God. In the Book of Isaiah we read:

“The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall feed; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The sucking child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder’s den. They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.” 
- Isaiah 11:6-9 

This vision continues in the New Testament. In fact, St Paul says that creation’s “bondage to decay” will be overcome: 

“. . . the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of him who subjected it in hope; because the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in travail together until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves . . .”
- Romans 8:19-22

In his letter to the Christians at Colossae, St Paul says that the unity of all things - including earthly things - is being restored through the dying and rising of Jesus:

“[Jesus] is the head of the body, the Church; he is the beginning, the first-born from the dead, that in everything he might be pre-eminent. For in him all the fulness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” 
- Colossians 1:19-20

Seen from one angle, then, our salvation is part of a much bigger picture: the salvation, renewal and transformation of everything that has been impacted and disordered by sin, including the world of matter.


“When the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman . . .” (Galatians 2:4) God the Son - Jesus - became one of us in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary, not in some vague mystical way, but by joining himself to the world of matter, the atoms and molecules of the created order, the physical universe. He came to us in a visible and tangible way. “True God” really did become “true Man” for our salvation.

This tangibility of God in Jesus is beautifully expressed by the Apostle John:

“Something which has existed from the beginning
which we have heard;
which we have seen with our own eyes;
which we have watched
and touched with our own hands;
the Word of life - this is our theme.
That life was made visible:
we saw it and are giving our testimony -
declaring to you the eternal life
which was present to the Father
and now has been revealed to us”.
- 1 John 1:1-2 (Jerusalem Bible translation)

That’s why we speak of Jesus as “God in the Flesh.” The word “incarnation” means just that . . . his “enfleshing”, when he came among us in his humanity as the actual revelation of God. In discussing this mystery the 20th century Anglican theologian, Eric Mascall, quotes these lines of the 19th century poet, H. R. Bramley, from what is now a well-known Christmas carol, referring to them as “the most profound theological statement ever made in the English language”:

“The Word in the bliss of the Godhead remains,
yet in flesh comes to suffer the keenest of pains;
he is that he was and for ever shall be,
but becomes that he was not, or you and for me”. 
- Eric Mascall (1905-1993), in Jesus - Who he is and How we Know Him

In fact, those words are a startling meditation on the key Gospel text:

“The Word became Flesh and dwelt among us.”
            - John 1:14

By becoming Man, Jesus joined himself to the created universe, ending the separation between the divine and the human, the visible and the invisible, spirit and matter, heaven and earth. Creation is “good” - not now just because of its origin in God, and not now just because it will be transfigured and glorified on the Last Day. For Christians, creation is “good” chiefly because of the Incarnation in which it becomes the means by which God shares with us his life and love.

It must surely have pleased the Lord . . . for divinity and humanity and thus all creation to be united in the only begotten and consubstantial Son, so that God might be all in all.”
- St John of Damascus (676-749), in On the Transfiguration 

“We might even say that the universe was created so that God might become incarnate, revealing creation as a descent from the Father of lights which is itself a participation in the eternal begetting of the Son.”
- Tracey Rowland, in No Bloodless Myth 

“In Jesus Christ, God has engraved his name upon matter; he has inscribed it so deeply that it cannot be erased, for matter took him into its innermost self.”
- Hans Urs Von Balthasar (1905-1988), In the Fullness of Faith, p. 122

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Creation revealing . . .

The Grampians National Park, Victoria, Australia

Over the next couple of days I am sharing with you the introduction to the section on Sacraments from my adult confirmation material, mainly because someone who has recently started out on their faith journey told me I should!

The first book of the Bible (“Genesis”) is very positive about the physical universe. God is even portrayed as surveying what he had made, and concluding “that it was good” (Genesis 1:31). This reflects mainstream Jewish and Christian traditions which have always regarded the world of matter as part of God’s loving and glorious self-expression. 

Maybe it seems strange that we emphasise such a basic idea. But we must, because there have always been religious people (including mistaken Christians) for whom physical existence is something negative, either a kind of prison from which we will one day be set free, or, worse, an intrinsic evil, a source only of temptation, and the chief cause of our undoing, our fall into sin. As Richard Holloway wrote, such people erroneously see the creation as 

“. . . a mine-field through which we must pick our way with anxious care, never pausing to gaze about and enjoy ourselves lest we stumble upon some explosive evil.”
- in New Vision of Glory

In contrast with these ideas, William Temple, Archbishop of Canterbury from 1942 to 1944, famously acknowledged that

“Christianity is the most avowedly materialistic of all the great religions.”
- in Nature, Man and God, p. 478

Indeed, the created order is celebrated throughout of the Old Testament, in which the Lord is praised, not just for creating the world, but also for revealing aspects of himself through it. One such passage, Psalm 19, begins:

“The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.”
- Psalm 19:1

When we come to the New Testament, we find St Paul echoing this theme in his letter to the early Christians in Rome:

“. . . what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made.”
- Romans 1:19-20

Pondering the natural world has been for many an aspect of their journey to a real knowledge of God. It has also given rise to some of the most sublime art and poetry down through the ages.  As Elizabeth Barret Browning wrote:

“Earth’s crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
But only he who sees takes off his shoes,
The rest sit round and pluck blackberries.”
- in Aurora Leigh, Book VII

And Wiliam Wordsworth wrote:

“. . . I have learned
To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing oftentimes
The still, sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man;
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things . . .”
- in Tintern Abbey

St Irenaeus (d. 220) spoke for many when he said that

“Nothing is a vacuum in the face of God. Everything is a sign of God.”
- in Against Heresies 4:21

The created world has the potential to evoke within us a sense of wonder which often includes, or leads to, a kind of revelation of God - provided we are not stubbornly closed to the possibility of transcendence. In fact, “natural” life is often the context in which we first sense God’s love trying to reach us. This is not just a case of experiencing created “things”, whether breathtakingly beautiful or terrifyingly awesome. It can also happen in significant events such as falling in love, the birth of a child, the death of someone close to us, or being reconciled with someone from whom we have been estranged. 

“Heaven is just behind the veil of the outward and visible, even here on earth. That tree over there with its gnarled branches and weighed down by mistletoe growth hides the heavenly tree which shimmers with an unearthly beauty. Sense the sense of the Presence, the Numinous, now and then.” 
- Doug Peters, personal correspondence

A new look

“Bishop David’s Blog” has been re-named 
“Streams of the River”

If you go back through my blog you will see that while I publish original articles from time to time, I mostly share devotional, spiritual, theological, and historical insights from a wide range of writers and teachers, ancient and modern. You’ll also notice that the blog’s purpose is to build up readers in the Gospel of Jesus and the Faith of the Church, rather than to engage in rancorous argument. (Although I admit that very occasionally I pass on a controversial article - such as those over the last few days on women bishops - but usually as a last resort, when other media eliminate from public attention the vew that I think is the right one!)

I have long believed that the image in Psalm 46 of the river whose streams make glad God’s city can be applied to the various streams of spiritual life and heritage that refresh the Church.

These streams must flow together, each enriching the other, even as we pray and work towards real unity and the evangelisation of the world.

So I will continue to share with you items of interest from Orthodox, Roman Catholics, Anglicans, Charismatics, Evangelicals and many others as well . . . sometimes even from “the liberals” when they say helpful things! The sustained growth of the blog’s readership, together with emails received, vindicates this approach.

“Streams of the River making glad the City of God” says it all, really.

Changing the blog’s name will also help cut back the number of enquirers to whom I have to tell the sad story of Forward in Faith Australia’s failed attempt at securing episcopal ministry for Australian Anglicans unable in conscience to accept with certainty the ordination of women as priests and bishops. I and my dear parish were the main casualties of that; I and they have had to cope with quite slanderous distortions of our stand, the published findings of the Archbishop of Brisbane's Commissioners notwithstanding. 

In spite of everything, for five years, in the midst of heartbreak and under extremely difficult conditions, that episcopal ministry WAS exercised for the sake of scattered people “just inside” and “just outside” official Anglican structures, to the best of my ability. And it was exercised in a truly evangelistic and deeply pastoral way . . . not as a political stunt. Then, three years ago, it became clear that many for whom I cared would be joining the Ordinariate for former Anglicans set up by the Roman Catholic Church, some would join other apostolic churches, and others would permanently align themselves with one of the continuing Anglican churches, including – after considerable trauma – the regathered TAC.

Very dear friends who have gone in different directions remain in my daily prayers. I know only too well what they have suffered at the hands of the so-called “liberal” Church. I am not “against” anyone. I love them all and I respect them. They must follow their consciences. But I must follow mine, and I believe that in the time left to me the Lord would have me pray, work and minister for a recovery of the Gospel and the Catholic Faith among Anglicans. When I accepted nomination by Forward in Faith Australia for episcopal ordination while remaining at All Saints' Wickham Terrace, it was in order to help people STAY, not LEAVE. Indeed, that was the whole point of “blurring the boundaries” between those still in the Anglican Church of Australia and those in the TAC, something for which a number of us were viciously attacked by extremists on both sides.

But, I am glad to say that there are even now surprising signs of renewal – both evangelical and catholic renewal – around the Anglican Communion. Praise God!

So, while never for a moment denying the reality of my episcopal ordination, or the wonderful grace of God so evident during the difficult five years that followed, I have been content since then to exercise in different ways the priestly and evangelistic ministry that has, in fact, been the focus of my life since my teenage years. Please keep me in your prayers.

I hope that you will keep visiting "Streams of the River"!

- Father David

Friday, November 23, 2012

Our varied experience of prayer

From a little book that has been a big blessing to me for many years:

The Lord Jesus himself will teach you
how you should pray.

He is the creative word
which you may receive 
in the silence of your heart
and the fruitful soil of your life.  
Listen attentively to what he will say;

Be swift to carry out
what he will ask of you.

You have been promised his Spirit
who will bear your poor little efforts
before the throne of grace;  
and into the intimacy of the Living God . . .

Your prayer will take countless forms
because it is the echo of your life,
and a reflection of the inexhaustible light
in which God dwells . . .

You want to seek God with all your life.
And love him with all your heart.
But you would be wrong
If you thought you could reach him.
Your arms are too short; your eyes are too dim;
Your heart and understanding too small.

To seek God means first of all
to let yourself be found by him.
He is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
He is the God of Jesus Christ.
He is your God,
not because he is yours
but because you are his.

Your prayer is therefore not so much a duty
as a privilege;
a gift rather than a problem
or the result of your own efforts.

So don’t tire yourself out 
looking for beautiful thoughts or words, 
but stay attentive before God 
in humility and expectation, 
in desire and purity of heart 
full of joy and hope. 

Your prayer will take countless forms. 
because it is the echo of your life, 
and a reflection of the inexhaustible light 
in which God dwells. 

Sometimes you will taste and see 
how good the Lord is.
Be glad then, and give him all honour,
because his goodness to you has no measure.

Sometimes you will be dry and joyless
like parched land or an empty well.

But your thirst and helplessness 
will be your best prayer
if you accept them with patience
and embrace them lovingly.

Sometimes your prayer will be an experience
of the infinite distance
that separates you from God;
sometimes your being and his fullness
will flow into each other.

Sometimes you will be able to pray
only with your body and hands and eyes;
sometimes your prayer will move
beyond words and images;
sometimes you will be able
to leave everything behind you
to concentrate on God and his Word.

Sometimes you will be able to do nothing else
but take your whole life and everything in you
and bring them to God

Every hour has its own possibilities
of genuine prayer.

- H. Van Der Looy in Rule for a New Brother