In my websurfing I come across quite a few headcovering and Christian simplicity sites. Many of you have found them, too. I am a little worried that some writers and some of their commentators are perpetrating some damaging and erroneous information. Most of these are extremists in view, so do not be deceived.
Heretics are those who sort of hold to Christian theology but somehow miss the boat. Usually, they emphasize one aspect of Christian belief over all others. They lose a sense of perspective, or ignore parts of the Bible that don’t support their point of view.
Even if you belong to a church that does not regularly use the creeds (Nicene, Apostles’ and Athanasian) these embody the basic tenets of the Christian faith. The basic tenets are the Triune God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit); the virgin birth, the redemptive death of Jesus Christ and His physical resurrection, the historicity and accuracy of the scriptures (containing all that is necessary for redemption); that God created the heavens and the earth and all that is in them; that Christ has gone to prepare a place for us and will come again to judge the earth, and that prayer is effective (i.e. that God is active in Creation still,and hears the prayers of His people.) This leaves a lot of room for differences in practice.
I am not making this up, and it is not unique to Anglicanism. It is a definition of orthodox faith that holds up under the scrutiny of the millenia.
So Roman Catholics, in ordinary, accepted practice are not heretics. Baptists are not heretics. Most people claiming to be Christians probably are.
The test of heresy can be made only by a church body, not by individuals. And church bodies are really reluctant to get into the debate except when their ordained people have wandered way too far. (Remember the Inquisitions? We don’t want that again.)
I believe that it will be before the Dread Judgment Seat that we will know how faithful we have been. It won’t be a matter for our fellow Christians to decide.