Saturday, June 24, 2006

From Fort Worth


Bishop Iker has sent the following message to reporter David Michael Cohen:

Your article "Diocese Votes to Leave Church" is seriously in error. The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth has made no such decision. That decision could only be made by the Annual Convention of the Diocese which meets in November.

We have asked for the alternative oversight and pastoral care of an orthodox primate of the Anglican Communion, but this is a pastoral arrangement, not a legal one, and the request has been made in full accord with official church procedures.

Our Diocese is still a full member of The Episcopal Church, and I would appreciate a retraction and correction in the Fort Worth Star Telegram. You have misinformed your readers.

Thank you.The Rt. Rev. Jack Leo Iker


Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Friday, June 23:CORRECTIONS AND CLARIFICATIONS

The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth is seeking to align itself with an Anglican primate other than the presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church in the United States. The proposed shift was mischaracterized Wednesday in the headline for an article about the diocese.

Source: Dio Fort Worth Website

“What new thing is the Spirit doing?”

From the Magic Statistics blog regarding a comment Dr. Edith Humphrey left on Titusonenine.

Edith Humphrey gives a much-needed word of encouragement in a comment posted at titusonenine. Her comment deserves wide circulation, I think. She takes a look beyond the depressing sight of the Episcopal Church and focuses on the big picture of Christ's church. (Pardon the typos since this was a comment on someone else’s blog which, as I know only too well, cannot be edited after posting.)

The debate over Arianism brought about clarity for the church with regards to the nature of Christ. Then they had the possibility of an ecumencal council to work things through, and the Creed emerged. Our divisions may prevent that, but we have greater possibilities of communication given the global realities, and we have a great and complex history behind us as the Bride of Christ. Over against the revisionism that plagues the mainline churches, we have seen remarkable things––the rediscovery of liturgy by the “free” and independent churches, a new love for the Great Tradition, the charismatic movement and Opus Dei in the Catholic church, and the rediscovery of evangelism as Orthodoxy moves out of survival mode.

What new thing is the Spirit doing? We received a missive from the late Pontiff at Plano/aka Dallas, through the lips of the current Pontiff. Many of us have close ties with Roman Catholic and Orthodox friends. The current question before all of us is that of the nature of the church, the ecclesial question. As we are freed up from sticking our fingers in the dyke of dying denominations, and as mainline Protestantism self-destructs, I pray that the end will not be a Balkanization, but a comunion that seeks to be faithful and that can enter into true, honest, and loving conversation with faithful Catholic and Orthodox brothers and sisters. Let us see what the Spirit will do, and pray that unity will not come only as a reponse to extreme persecution. Ut unum sint––one in undistorted doctrine, full worship and family likeness within one church. God specializes in resurrection.

That is the most inspiring thing I've read arising from General Convention.

Edith Humphrey is currently Associate Professor of New Testament at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. She has served as a member of the Primate's Theological Commission, Anglican Church of Canada, and has taught at Regent College. An excerpt from her latest book Ecstasy and Intimacy has been printed in The Anglican Planet.

Saturday Morning: Stay tuned

Early Saturday Morning: Hope we can get things fixed soon

AARRGGGHHH: Well Titusonenine WAS working for awhile last night. Mike Daley our fearless tech elf was very sick yesterday.

After the system came back up around 8 p.m., looks like it stayed up until just after 9:30 p.m. This elf had called it a night about 1o minutes before that. (Yes, that means it's ALL MY FAULT. Twice yesterday I left the computer with T19 running happily. I leave and it crashes. Hmmmm.)

We'll see if Mike can get the main site up this morning. If not, we'll be posting over here today. Stay tuned. And sorry. Guess our server is just as worn out from GenCon as all of us humans.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Religion & Ethics Newsweekly: Episcopal Church Convention Aftermath

(posted for Kendall -- he doesn't yet have a separate login to post on this backup site.)

BOB ABERNETHY, anchor: At its General Convention this week, the Episcopal Church elected as its leader, for the next nine years, Katharine Jefferts Schori, now Bishop of Nevada. She becomes the first woman to be chosen presiding bishop in any part of the worldwide Anglican Communion. Meanwhile, Episcopalians remain sharply divided over ordaining as a bishop anyone who is gay. They tried again this week to find an agreement but seemed to satisfy no one, as Kim Lawton reports from Columbus, Ohio.


LAWTON: Clergy and lay representatives here spent nine days in protracted, often painful, debate about how the Episcopal Church should respond to worldwide concerns about issues of homosexuality.

The Episcopal Church is the U.S. branch of the 77-million-member Anglican Communion. Many Anglicans were outraged in 2003 when the last General Convention approved the consecration of Gene Robinson, an openly gay bishop, and voted to permit the blessing of same-sex unions. An emergency Communion report called on the U.S. to impose a moratorium on gay bishops and the blessing of same-sex unions until some new consensus emerges.Church leaders here were deadlocked over how to respond. On the last day of the General Convention, the outgoing Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold, visibly frustrated, urged the adoption of a compromise resolution in order to maintain unity. His successor-elect supported that, even as she endorsed the full inclusion of gays in the church.

Bishop JEFFERTS SCHORI (to delegates): I don't find this an easy thing to say to you, but I think that is the best we're going to manage at this point in our church's history.

LAWTON: In the end, the convention approved the measure, which calls on the church not to consecrate any bishops "whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider Church." It doesn't mention same-sex blessings.

Bishop FRANK GRISWOLD (Presiding Bishop, Episcopal Church, at press conference): What I term the "diverse center" has finally found its voice. We are going to stand together in all our diversity as one church committed to one mission.

LAWTON: Many gay and lesbian Episcopalians felt betrayed.

Reverend SUSAN RUSSELL (President, Integrity): And, I think Jesus is weeping at this moment, not only for the gay and lesbian people who've been told yet again that they're second-class Christians. No matter how you couch it, that's what got said in there.


LAWTON: Conservatives also criticized the resolution, saying it didn't go far enough.

Canon KENDALL HARMON (Diocese of South Carolina): So this is a church that's using weak words to try to paper over a big chasm and did this last-minute gesture that falls far short of what we're asked. I think you saw an American church that wanted to go its own way.

Read it all. and don't miss all the related materials and links at the bottom of the page.

Letter from the AAC President Following the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church

AAC Press Release
June 23, 2006

Letter from the AAC President Following the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church

Dear Friends,We have just returned from the 75th Convention of the Episcopal Church USA (ECUSA). The American Anglican Council (AAC) went to Columbus to work for clarity, and I believe we witnessed ECUSA make their choice. The worldwide Communion asked for simple, unambiguous compliance with the Windsor Report, specifically an expression of regret for decisions made in 2003 and subsequent actions, as well as moratoria on consecrations of non-celibate homosexuals and same-sex blessings. The Episcopal Church did not deliver. Instead, both the House of Bishops and House of Deputies bowed to intense pressure from the Presiding Bishop to pass B033, a resolution characterized by ill-defined language with no provision for enforcement or accountability. The legislation “called upon” standing committees and diocesan bishops to “exercise restraint” by not consenting to the election of individuals whose “manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church.” Why was this legislation not cast in Windsor language? It was clear that neither house would have approved Windsor compliance wording.

Biblically faithful bishops denounced B033, accurately assessing the resolution as “misleading the rest of the Communion by giving a false perception that they intend actually to comply with the recommendations of the Windsor Report.” According to Associated Press reports, John Chane, Bishop of Washington, immediately declared that the resolution was “non-binding” and that “he would not follow it.” This is no surprise. If past performance is the best indicator of future behavior, we can expect the Episcopal Church to continue its revisionist trajectory with no regard for the Anglican Communion.

In addition to the unsurprising fudge on consecrations of bishops, the Episcopal Church simply refused to address the matter of same-sex blessings. Dodging the issue with a claim that ECUSA has not authorized official rites, General Convention ignored the fact that same-sex blessings are occurring on a regular basis all around the country, performed in churches by Episcopal clergy and bishops. In addition, numerous dioceses have developed, or are in the process of developing, rites of same-sex blessings.

The election of Katharine Jefferts Schori as presiding bishop – arguably the least experienced as priest or bishop, and possibly the most liberal – is an affront to the Anglican Communion. Before the election, her record was clear. At the 2003 General Convention, she voted against a resolution affirming basic tenets of Christian faith and the authority of Scripture, and supported V. Gene Robinson’s confirmation as well as blessings of same-sex unions. In the days following her election as presiding bishop, her personal theology has been exposed even more clearly. In her first sermon as presiding bishop-elect, she referred to “our Mother Jesus.” In interviews, she expressed her version of the Gospel: “Now the Bible tells us about how to treat other human beings and that’s certainly the great message of Jesus. To include the un-included.” She has also stated that homosexuality is not a sin. When the global primates were gathered in October of 2003 in Lambeth Palace to deal with the chaos resulting from Gene Robinson’s confirmation as bishop, she was in her Nevada Diocesan Convention pushing a same-sex blessing resolution for her diocese. This does not argue well for her having a sensitivity to the larger Communion, or even caring.

When asked about life after death, Jefferts Schori responded: “But what’s important about your life? What is it that has made you a unique individual? What is the passion that has kept you getting up every morning and engaging the world? There are hints within that, about what it is that continues after you die.”

Such statements indicate clearly that Jefferts Schori is committed to a belief system which is fundamentally contrary to Scripture, Christian teaching and Anglican doctrine. There is no other way to interpret her words.

What will be the Communion’s response? The Archbishop of Canterbury issued a brief statement, noting that the Communion will have to carefully review the decisions of General Convention 2006. Primates of the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa (CAPA) also issued an open letter saying, “…reports to date of your elections and actions suggest that you are unable to embrace the essential recommendations of the Windsor Report and the 2005 Primates Communiqué necessary for the healing of our divisions.” Global South primates will meet in September and will offer their “concerted pastoral and structural response.”

CAPA primates also sent a strong message to the orthodox in America: “We assure all those Scripturally faithful dioceses and congregations alienated and marginalised within your Provincial structure that we have heard their cries.”

Brothers and Sisters, despite their best efforts to feign Windsor compliance, ECUSA has made its choice, and now we must unite and act to ensure a biblically faithful expression of Anglicanism in America. Whether you are in ECUSA, are in the process of disaffiliating, or are under oversight of another Anglican province, we are committed to assisting you to go from strength to strength. The war is over; it is time to build the church.

In Christ,
The Rev. Canon David C. Anderson
CEO and President, American Anglican Council


LA Times Editorial: Battling Over Bishops

Battling over bishops
Gender and sexuality trouble in the Episcopal Church.
June 23, 2006

A GENERAL CONVENTION of the Episcopal Church that was supposed to be dominated by a debate over gay bishops has produced headlines about another sort of untraditional church leader: the first woman elected as presiding bishop. But reaction to the story demonstrates how entangled the two controversies are. Until the election Sunday of the Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori as presiding bishop, the highlight of the convention was expected to be a vote on whether the U.S. church should declare a moratorium on ordaining additional gay bishops. With support from Jefferts Schori, the convention Wednesday approved a last-minute compromise resolution calling on Episcopal dioceses not to agree to the ordination of bishops "whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church."

But even if that resolution calms the waters of controversy (which seems unlikely), Jefferts Schori's election has roiled them. Conservatives were upset not only because she supported the ordination of an openly gay bishop of New Hampshire in 2003, but also because of the feared reaction to her election from churches that do not accept women as bishops.In the religious as in the secular world, opponents of women's rights and opponents of gay rights are often the same people.

In many ways the ecclesiastical earthquake of three years ago is a replay of the controversy that followed the Episcopal Church's decision a generation ago to ordain women as priests.

Then as now, conservative Episcopalians said that a more inclusive ministry was scripturally unsound. What both controversies have in common is not only a fixation on sex and gender but also the challenge of deciding what religious practices can and should change with the times. How literally should Christians take language in Scripture forbidding a woman to "to usurp authority over the man," or declaring that it's an abomination for a man to "lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman," or saying that a church leader should be "the husband of one wife"? Are such proscriptions spiritual wheat or cultural chaff; an accurate echo of the divine voice or a reflection of merely human customs that can evolve?

Individual believers will respond differently to those questions. Yet the election of a female presiding bishop for the Episcopal Church is a reminder that many, though not all, members of that faith have accommodated themselves to what was once seen as a heretical idea, without compromising what they see as the essentials of their faith. That experience can only give heart to advocates of other kinds of inclusiveness in the church's ordained ministry.


Note: Al Mohler has a commentary on this editorial on his blog today (which is where we first saw the link). You can read it here.

Name of the mainline game is “local option”

The latest Get Religion post by Terry Mattingly

In the end, it was the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) that made the biggest news on the front lines of the liturgical culture wars this week. However, it should be noted that the most important action taken by the oldline Presbyterians was to adopt precisely the option that the Episcopalians have been using for quite some time now.

The name of the game is “local option,” meaning that officials in blue pews get to read the Bible (and the denomination’s own teachings) in a way that allows them to move foward on issues such as the ordination of sexually active gays and lesbians and the creation — semi-officially, of course — of church rites to celebrate same-sex marriages. Meanwhile, people in red pews get to keep believing what they have believed for centuries and, of course, they get to keep sending in their pledge dollars to support national agencies that act as if basic points of doctrine and moral theology are moot, even if they remain on the books.

This is called compromise. The problem is that there are true believers — on the left and the right — who keep acting as if they believe they are actually right and that there is such a thing as truth and that it should be defended. It’s the people in the middle who keep asking: What is truth? It’s the people in the middle who want to wrap their seminaries and pension funds in a protective layer of doctrinal fog. And that’s the story that is hardest to write, because it is impossible to say that one side lost and other side won.

Read the whole blog entry here.

Christianity Today Weblog: All the links re: Mainline Conventions

This should give all you news addicts PLENTY to read!

Weblog: In the Name of the Mother, Child, and Womb
Plus: More updates from this week's church conventions and more articles from online sources around the world.

Weblog has been overwhelmed with all the church convention news. (See our dispatches from Columbus, Ohio, on ECUSA's General Convention.) So we're just posting links of articles from last Saturday through today.

Here are some highlights: Presbyterians (PCUSA) get creative with the Trinity and allow local jurisdictions to break ban non ordaining self-avowed practicing gays. Episcopalians reject banning gay bishops, kind of. The Vatican asks Amnesty International not to push for worldwide decriminalization of abortion. And a Christian football film was not given a PG rating for its religious themes.

ECUSA gay bishops / Katharine Jefferts Schori / Episcopal conservatives / Anglican schism / More on ECUSA / PCUSA allows ordaining gays / PCUSA divestment / PCUSA language on the Trinity / More on PCUSA / SBC Church life / Pentecostalism / Missions & ministry / Catholicism / Parish cuts / U.K. Cardinal challenges abortion laws /Abortion / Life ethics / Politics / Church & state / Education / Silver rings banned from UK school / Religious freedom / Religious freedom & television / Homosexuality / Family / War & terrorism / Zimbabwe / Music / Books / Film / Sports / People / Spirituality / More articles of interest


Some Other Resolutions You May Have Missed...

Okay, for your perusal and comment, I am going to just post three more resolutions that have passed through General Convention without comment. I’ll highlight portions that I think deserve more attention:

From Matt Kennedy at Stand Firm

From Resolution C040 entitled: Support Biblical Literacy

Resolved, the House of Deputies concurring, That the 75th General Convention of The Episcopal Church, recognizing that the Bible has sometimes been used to justify oppressive institutions and practices, supports efforts to foster methods of biblical interpretation which do not lend support to oppressive systems; and be it furtherResolved, That this 75th General Convention recognize with gratitude the celebration of the United Kingdom’s Abolition of Slavery Bicentenary (1807-2007) and the celebration of the State of Vermont’s 230th anniversary of the abolition of slavery (1777-2007), giving thanks for these witnesses of liberating faith.

Is it just me or does this resolution seem a little too open ended when it comes to "oppressive" interpretations. What exactly does that mean?


D069: Supreme Authority of Scripture

Here is what Kendall Harmon submitted:

Resolved, the House of _____ concurring, That the 75th General Convention acknowledges that the Bible has always been at the centre of Anglican belief and life, and declares its belief that Scripture is the Church's supreme authority, and as such ought to be seen as a focus and means of unity.

Here is what came out of committee and passed through Convention:

Resolved, the House of Deputies concurring, That the 75th General Convention acknowledges the authority of the triune God, exercised through Scripture.

Whole Post is Here.

A Pastoral Letter from Bishop Duncan

A Pastoral Letter from the Moderator of the Anglican Communion Network
23rd June, A.D. 2006

A Pastoral Letter from the Moderator

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

A new day is dawning. It is a new day for all of us who understand ourselves to be faithful and orthodox Anglicans, whether within the Episcopal Church or gone out from it.
It is with sadness, but also with anticipation, that I write to you now that the General Convention of the Episcopal Church has provided the clarity for which we have long prayed. By almost every assessment the General Convention has embraced the course of “walking apart.”

I have often said to you that the decisive moment in contemporary Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion history occurred at General Convention 2003. At that time, in the words of the Primates, the Episcopal Church took action that would “tear the fabric of our Communion at its deepest level.”

Since that time, the tear has widened. While we had hoped that this Church would repent and return to received Faith and Order, General Convention 2006 clearly failed to submit to the call, the spirit or the requirements of the Windsor Report. The middle has collapsed. For that part of the Network working constitutionally within ECUSA as over against the dioceses represented by the thirty progressive bishops who issued their Statement of Conscience, we are two churches under one roof.

Even before the close of Convention, Network and Windsor bishops began disassociating themselves from the inadequate Windsor resolution, and thus far one Network diocese has formally requested alternative primatial oversight.

More initiatives are underway. Pastoral and apostolic care has been promised without regard to geography. All I can tell you is that the shape of this care will depend on a very near-range international meeting. Other actions will follow upon continuing conversations with those at the highest levels of the Anglican Communion. Over the course of the month of July, many of the things we have longed for will, I believe, come to pass or be clearly in view for all.

The Anglican Communion Network has never been more united. We are gaining strength, both domestically and internationally. This is the time for biblically orthodox Anglicans to hang together, supporting one another in solidarity, in prayer and with expectancy.

My prayers are with you all, especially those whose plight is most difficult and whose patience is most worn. Pray for me and for all the leadership in Network, Episcopal Church, and Anglican Communion, and most especially for the Archbishop of Canterbury in this crucial moment in modern Anglican history. Again I say to you that a new day is dawning.

Faithfully in Christ Jesus,

Bob Pittsburgh+
The Rt. Rev. Robert Wm. Duncan Moderator of the Anglican Communion Network

Site Problems: June 23 -- 6:40 p.m update

June 23 -- Bandwidth problem on the main site

Update 6:40 p.m. Eastern

Greetings all. Looks like CaNNet is having tech problems tonight and Titusonenine is down.

Problem is it caught us T19elves off guard. We'd not made any backups today, so we can't easily repost all the recent Titusonenine entries. I guess we might have to get in the habit of routinely backing up the main page here daily.

We've got one or two things we can post right now. But hopefully the main site will be back online soon.

If the main site is not back up by 8 p.m. Eastern, we'll try to work with Kendall to re-post some of today's entries here.


Wednesday, June 21, 2006

more or less synchronized

With a few minor exceptions, most of the posts (except perhaps for some of the live blogging updates) are all posted on the Titusonenine main site as well.

The T19 MAIN SITE seems to be working ok again as of 6 p.m. Eastern

Video of Network Bishops Conference Part 1

Stand Firm just keeps delivering the goods!

Video from moments after B033 was passed in the House of Deputies. Bishop of Pittsburgh and ACN Moderator Robert Duncan speaks.

Watch it here

Episcopal Church group defers on gay bishops

A second Reuters article

By Michael Conlon

Tue Jun 20, 6:31 PM ET

CHICAGO (Reuters) - A proposal for the U.S. Episcopal Church to impose an unofficial moratorium on the ordination of more openly gay bishops was rejected in a key vote at the church's convention on Tuesday, a move that could further roil relations with fellow Anglicans worldwide.

The issue is not completely dead since the triennial convention of the 2.3-million-member U.S. church will not close until Wednesday evening and the matter could be revived.
But with time running out, the rejection by one of two legislative policy-making houses meeting in Columbus, Ohio, makes it less likely the church will impose a moratorium or some other hold on future gay bishops as the Anglican church's spiritual leadership had suggested.

The measure that was defeated by the House of Deputies -- composed of lay and clergy diocesan representatives -- asked local church communities who elect bishops to "refrain" from doing so if the person involved lived in a way that "presents a challenge to the wider church" and would strain Anglican relations.

The 77-million-member Anglican Communion, as the global church is known, has been in turmoil for three years since the last such convention of the U.S. church approved the consecration of Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, the first bishop known to be in an openly gay relationship in more than 450 years of Anglican history.

The church has spent much of its week-long convention trying to find a way to respond to the Windsor Report, a paper issued at the behest of the archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. It advised the Episcopal church to apologize for the Robinson elevation, impose a moratorium on any more like it and make it plain it opposes the blessing of same-sex unions.


The exact vote by the more than 800 deputies was not announced but witnesses said it was not close. A second vote to reconsider the measure was also rejected.

For the measure to come up again, it would have to be approved by the 230-member House of Bishops. It would then come back to the House of Deputies, and needs approval there to become official. It was not clear whether the measure would be rewritten in an attempt to improve its chances of passing.

The Rev. Susan Russell, head of Integrity, the group representing gay and lesbian Episcopalians, said the vote is "a sign of encouragement that we will find a way to make clear our commitment to the (Anglican) communion and to the gay and lesbians baptized in it."

On Sunday the convention sent a shock through Anglican circles by choosing Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori the first woman to lead the U.S. church, a move unprecedented in the faith.

On another front, the largest U.S. Presbyterian Church body approved a measure on Tuesday that would open the way for the ordination of gays and lesbians in that church under certain circumstances.

The new policy was approved on a vote of 57-43 percent of church representatives of the 2.5-million-member Presbyterian Church U.S.A. meeting in Birmingham, Alabama. It gives local church organizations more leeway in deciding if gays can be ordained as lay deacons and elders as well as clergy, provided they are faithful to the church's core values.



June 21, 3:45 pm

FROM BISHOP CHANE AND OTHERS...We, the undersigned Bishops of this 75th General Convention, in the confidence of the Gospel and out of love for this great Church, must prayerfully dissent from the action of this Convention in Resolution B033 (on Election of Bishops).

A Statement of Conscience

We, the undersigned Bishops of this 75th General Convention, in the confidence of the Gospel and out of love for this great Church, must prayerfully dissent from the action of this Convention in Resolution B033 (on Election of Bishops). We do so for the following reasons:

* The process used to arrive at Resolution B033 raises serious concerns about the integrity of our decision-making process as a Church. In particular we note that we discussed a resolution, A162 , on Tuesday, but were never given an opportunity to act upon it. Instead, we were presented with a different resolution this morning, and were given only 30 minutes for debate and discussion. This resolution bears great consequences both for the Anglican Communion and the Episcopal Church and unfortunately was not adequately discussed.

* Our conversation has been framed in a flawed paradigm, forcing us to choose between two goods—the full inclusion in the life of the Church of our brother and sister Christians who happen to be gay or lesbian and our full inclusion in the life of our beloved Communion.

* The process that brought about the reconsideration of this matter failed to honor the integrity of the House of Deputies by bringing undue pressure to bear on that body.

* Our witness to justice has been prophetic in this nation and in the wider Anglican Communion on the issues of the full inclusion of people of color and persons who are differently-abled. For more than 30 years women been permitted to be included in the councils of this Church as lay deputies to this Convention and as deacons, priests and bishops. This witness to full inclusion has borne the fruits of the Spirit and is incarnate in the faces and lives around these tables and throughout the Church. The language of this resolution too much echoes past attempts by the Church to limit participation of those perceived to be inadequate for full inclusion in the ordained ministry.

* Any language that could be perceived as effecting a moratorium that singles out one part of the Body by category is discriminatory. We are absolutely committed to the future of this Communion and the process of healing the strain that we readily admit and regret exists, and has been exacerbated in our own house by events today. We must participate in this process with our own integrity intact and thus we are obliged to make this dissent. We intend to challenge the rest of the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion to honor the promise to include the voices of gay and lesbian in the conversations about the future of the Communion. We pray for the Church, for our Communion, and for our lesbian and gay brothers and sisters.This statement is being distributed by Mike Barwell from the diocese of New Hampshire. He reports that at least 20 bishops supported the sentiments expressed in this statement, but he is not sure how many actually signed.

Bad Headline Alert!

Hmmm... We don't think this headline is exactly accurate!

Episcopal Church votes to curb gay bishops

By Jim Leckrone 56 minutes ago
COLUMBUS, Ohio (Reuters)

The U.S. Episcopal Church, trying to appease an angry and alienated worldwide Anglican community, reversed itself on Wednesday and agreed to try to avoid the consecration of more openly gay bishops.

The action came 24 hours after one of two legislative bodies at the 2.3 million member U.S. church's convention had rejected a similar idea.

The non-binding resolution adopted at the convention calls on those in authority "to exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate (for bishop) whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion."

Debate during the weeklong convention made it clear that the "manner of life" caution applied to openly homosexual candidates for the episcopate. The church has been in turmoil since its consecration three years ago of Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, the first bishop known to be in an openly gay relationship in more than 450 years of Anglican history.

Rowan Williams, the archbishop of Canterbury, said it was not clear how fully the U.S. church's actions responded to concerns raised by the world church's spiritual leadership.

"The wider Communion will therefore need to reflect carefully on the significance of what has been decided before we respond more fully," he said.

The resolution's "exercise caution" wording falls short of a recommendation from the Windsor Report, a paper issued at the behest of Williams, which suggested a moratorium on more gay bishops.


But the advice to avoid consecrations that was finally chosen was stronger than earlier wording proposed by a special commission within the U.S. church that called for exercising "very considerable caution" in elevating gays in open relationships to the episcopate.

However, the election of bishops is a local matter within the church and any resolution in whatever form is advisory.

The vote came after Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold warned the convention in its closing hours that "unless there is a clear perception on the part of our Anglican brothers and sisters that they have been taken seriously ... there will be no conversion and the bonds of affection which undergird communion will be further strained."

Griswold is leaving the church's top post after nearly nine years. His successor, voted in last Sunday at the convention, is Nevada Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, who will be installed later this year and become the first woman to head any branch in the 77 million-member Anglican community worldwide.

"This church, the body of Christ, is not wholly one and not wholly two," she said during the debate. "The resolution which is before you is far from adequate. The language is exceedingly challenging but it is the best we can do at this convention."

Jefferts Schori, who backed the Robinson consecration three years ago and favors gay rights generally, said the resolution did not amount to "slamming the door" on the issue.
"We need to keep working ... to find the common body in this church," she said. "This is the best we are going to manage at this point in the church's history."


Be Prepared In Season and Out -- AAC Deputies

This is a link to a PodCast from BabyBlue. Here's how she describes it:

This is an inspiring and amazing gathering just before the substantial votes on Windsor took place. Hear Ellis Brust's moving message and Kendall Harmon's talk from the front lines, as well as the Bishop of Ft. Worth and the Bishop of Springfield. It is inspiring and may help give you insights into what it's been like here at General Convention 2006.You can hear it by clicking the [PodCast link] above or go to this link.

You can also download it from the iTunes Music Store (for free) in the Podcasting Section. Just search for BabyBlueOnline.

Bishop Chane: Resolutioin B033 NOT BINDING

Resolution B-33 "Not Binding" Bishop of Washington says

The resolution is not binding Bishop John Chane of the Diocese of Washington, D.C., said immediately after it passed that he would not follow it. "My own understanding of my responsibility as a bishop is to live into the integrity of my office," Chane said in a statement.We've heard that a number of liberal bishops - perhaps as many as 30 - have disassociated themselves from the resolution. As soon as this is confirmed, I will post it.


What one Network church has written its members

Received by e-mail from a Network Church's mailing list:

A couple hours ago, General Convention approved a last-ditch effort at “fudging” compliance with the expectations of the Anglican Communion.

This morning, Presiding Bishop Griswold convened an emergency meeting of the Convention. He called upon the House of Bishops and House of Deputies to consider a new resolution sponsored by Bp Peter Lee (Virginia). This new resolution (B033) is a “fudge” resolution nearly identical to the one which the House of Deputies voted down last night. So, today’s vote was an 11th-hour attempt to fudge acquiescence and keep ECUSA a full member of the Communion.

The fudge resolution does not comply with the spirit and letter of the Windsor Report . The Anglican Communion called for a “moratorium on the election and consent to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate who is living in a same gender union” (Windsor Report paragraph 134). Instead of a specific moratorium on any new bishops who engage in homosex, ECUSA’s resolution B033 simply invites dioceses to exercise restraint in considering candidates who may in any way offend any other members of the Anglican Communion.

Even with this resolution in place, ECUSA could continue consecrating anyone it wants as bishop.

See this website for a statement from the Anglican Communion Network:

Network Bishops Issue Statement

Received via e-mail from ACN. Will post link when we get a chance.


June 21, 2006


We, the undersigned, Bishops of the Episcopal Church make the following statement:

In the wake of the action by this House granting consent to the consecration of Canon V. Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire in 2003, many of us in this House made an appeal to the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Primates of the Anglican Communion “to intervene in the pastoral emergency that has overtaken us.” That appeal was heard and the Archbishop called for an extraordinary meeting of the Primates on 15-16 October, 2003. The Primates spoke forthrightly and unanimously about the consequences that would ensue across the Communion in the event that the consecration went forward, warning that it would “tear the fabric of our Communion at its deepest level.” They also called for the formation, under a mandate given by the Archbishop, of the Lambeth Commission on Communion. This General Convention has now given its response to the recommendations of the work of that Commission, known as the Windsor Report.

Now, once again, we find the need to speak candidly. The responses which the Convention has given to the clear and simple requests of the Lambeth Commission, the clear and simple requests indeed of the Anglican Communion, are clearly and simply inadequate. We reaffirm our conviction that the Windsor Report provides the way forward for the entire Anglican Communion, the ecumenical relationships of the Communion, and the common life of a faithful Episcopal Church. Further, we have agreed to submit ourselves to the Windsor Report’s requirements, both in what it teaches and in the discipline it enjoins. We have not changed in our commitment.

Sadly, because of statements made by members of this House at this Convention, we must question whether this General Convention is misleading the rest of the Communion by giving a false perception that they intend actually to comply with the recommendations of the Windsor Report. We therefore disassociate ourselves from those acts of this Convention that do not fully comply with the Windsor Report.

It is our intention not only to point to the inadequacies of the General Convention’s responses, but to declare to our brothers and sisters in Christ throughout the Communion that we continue as The Episcopal Church in this country who uphold and propagate the historic faith and order we have come to know through the Anglican heritage of apostolic teaching and biblical faith; who desire to be fully a constituent member of the Anglican Communion; and who are ready to embrace and live under the Windsor Report without equivocation. Accordingly, we repudiate the actions of the General Convention of 2003 which have breached the bonds of affection within the Communion. We bishops have committed to withhold consents for any persons living in same gender relationships who may be put forward for consecration as a bishop of the Church. And we have refused to grant authority for the blessing of sexual relationships outside Christian Marriage in our jurisdictions. We intend to go forward in theCommunion confidently and unreservedly.

Our chief concern now is to fulfill our charge as bishops of the Church of God in the Anglican tradition to “guard the faith, unity and discipline” of the Church. Pastoral care and apostolic teaching must not only be given to our own dioceses, but to all the faithful in this country who seek apostolic oversight and support. We will take counsel together to fulfill our service on behalf of faithful Anglicans in this country, both clergy and laity, and to proclaim the Gospel and build up the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ, and we seek the support of the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Primates and Bishops of the Anglican Communion as we do so.

Signed . . .
[Signatures have yet to be finalized]

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

AP: Episcopal Delegates Approve "Nonbinding Measure" that "Stops Far Short" of Moratorium

Episcopal Delegates to Adopt Resolution
Source: Associated Press (
By RACHEL ZOLL, 06.21.2006, 02:07 PM

Episcopal delegates approved a last-ditch attempt by their chief pastor Wednesday to salvage worldwide Anglican unity, voting to adopt a resolution that calls on U.S. church leaders to "exercise restraint" when considering gay candidates for bishop.The nonbinding measure stops far short of the moratorium on gay bishops that Anglican leaders demanded to calm conservative outrage over the 2003 consecration of Bishop V. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, who lives with his longtime male partner.But it may leave open the chance for discussion between leaders of the Episcopal Church and other members of the Anglican Communion, who are badly at odds over gay clergy.

Traditionalists hold that the Bible specifically prohibits gay sex.The legislation passed in the final hours of an anguished nine-day General Convention. It asks Episcopal leaders to "exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration" of candidates for bishop "whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church."The House of Deputies, comprised of more than 800 lay people and clergy, voted for the compromise resolution, one day after killing stronger legislation that would have urged dioceses to refrain from choosing bishops in same-gender relationships.

The vote came after direct pleas from outgoing Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold and Nevada Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, who will become presiding bishop in November, that deputies approve something to signal they understand the anger of Anglican leaders."Unless there is a clear perception on the part of our Anglican brothers and sisters that they have been taken seriously in their concerns, it will be impossible to have any genuine conversation," Griswold said Wednesday in a special joint session that he called of both houses.

Still, the resolution is not binding and Bishop John Chane of the Diocese of Washington, D.C., said immediately after it passed that he would not follow it."My own understanding of my responsibility as a bishop is to live into the integrity of my office," Chane said in a statement.

Date: 6/21/2006

Live Blog ACN Press Conference

Network Bishops Statement should be out SOON


General Convention votes "Aye" on B033

This is from blogger BabyBlue live in Columbus

Last night the Presiding Bishop called for a Joint Session this morning. At the Joint Session, Frank Griswold introduced a brand new resolution that The Episcopal Church only "receive and embrace" a "process of healing and reconciliation." No repentance - but not even regret. The resolution just "calls" bishops and standing committees to only "exercise restraint" by not electing and consecrating bishops whose "manner of life" only "presents a challenge to the wider church" and that all we worry about is the "strains" on the communion.

Does this sound like a church who recognizes that what happened in 2003 tore the fabric of the Anglican Communion. Is this a church that regrets its actions and promises not to do it before the communion comes to a consensus on this issue. No. In fact, it was clear from the PB-elect's remarks that whatever restraint is shown will be temporary and that what she calls "pastoral care" will win out over restraint.

In fact, she told the House of Deputies that the church is of two minds. The scriptures for today's lectionary are very clear about what God thinks about being double minded.

But the scripture readings for today are also clear that it is God's kindness that leads us to repentance. The leadership of the Anglican Communion have been very kind to ECUSA in pleading for regret and repentance and a moratorium on electing and consecration bishops in same sex unions. ECUSA is quite clear that it does not intend to regret its actions at General Convention, that it was make a commitment to stop electing and consecrating bishops in same sex unions, and that it will only admit that ECUSA has strained the communion - there's not even any mention of the bonds of affection.

At least we now have clarity. ANd now the rain and storms, which have been pouring down since this morning have stopped and the sun is now shining through.

We see clearly now the rain has gone.More later - thank you for your prayers.

See more info about

Archbishop of Canterbury issues statement


June 21, 12:47 pm

Archbishop of Canterbury: statement at the conclusion of deliberations on the Windsor Report and the Anglican Communion at the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church of the United States of America

“I am grateful to the Bishops and Deputies of the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church (USA) for the exceptional seriousness with which they have responded to the request of the Primates of the Anglican Communion that they should address the recommendations of the Windsor Report relating to the tensions arising from the decisions associated with the 74th General Convention in 2003.

“There is much to appreciate in the hard and devoted work done by General Convention, and before that, by the Special Commission on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion, in crafting the resolutions. This and the actions taken today show how strong is their concern to seek reconciliation and conversation with the rest of the Communion.

“It is not yet clear how far the resolutions passed this week and today represent the adoption by the Episcopal Church of all the proposals set out in the Windsor Report. The wider Communion will therefore need to reflect carefully on the significance of what has been decided before we respond more fully.

“I am grateful that the JSC of the Primates and ACC has already appointed a small working group to assist this process of reflection and to advise me on these matters in the months leading up to the next Primates’ Meeting.

“I intend to offer fuller comments on the situation in the next few days. The members of Convention and the whole of the Episcopal Church remain very much in our prayers.”


Archbishop's Press Office
Lambeth Palace
London SE1 7JU

The Vote is in!

House of Deputies Votes on B033

The chair has called the Chaplain.

The vote begins.

The chair recognizes a deputy from Central New York.

His question ruled out of order. They will continue to take a Vote by Orders.


Here in the newsroom people are typing and listening intently. A few reporters wearily sip their coffee. You hear the tap, tap, tap of the laptops. We wait.

If this passes, the Episcopal Church will not have complied with the requests made by the leadership of the Anglican Communion in the Windsor Report.

Lay Orders are voting

Clergy Orders are now voting.

LAY: yes 77.4 no 21. divided 11 carried

CLERGY: 75.8 yes 24 no divided 10 carried


Final text of B033 as passed by Bishops

Trying to verify I have the exact text of what passed in the House of Bishops. I can't get into the ECUSA legislation table at the moment.

Here's what Anglican Mainstream has posted, along with the (rough) vote total:

The Resolution which passed by roughly 70-30 in the House of Bishops:

Resolved that 75th General Convention receive and embrace the Windsor
Report invitation to engage in a process of healing and reconciliation and call upon Standing Committees and bishops with jurisdiction to exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate of those whose manner of life presents a challenge to the larger church and will lead to further strains on communion.

Note it is being reported that the Network Bishops have left the HoB and are working on a minority report. We'll post news as we get it. And we'll also keep trying to verify the B033 text that the Deputies will be voting on.

Note: reading the latest Stand Firm blog, it looks like the Deputies are arguing over how / whether to allow this on the floor. Wow.

Sorry forgot this link

BabyBlue is also liveblogging and has great coverage

B033 goes to House of Deputies

From BabyBlue

People are running to the House of Deputies; Reports coming in that a group of Bishops walk out of House to write Minority Report - more info coming
The attention now turns to the House of Deputies who will receive B-033. Outside it's pouring down rain and thunder continues to crash over the Convention Center. We are now waiting for B-033 to hit the Deputies floor.There is a rumor that a group of bishops walked out of the House. We are waiting for more information. Stay tuned.

Resolution B033

As posted on Titusonenine almost an hour ago. We understand this passed the House of Bishops. We hear Orthodox Bishops have walked out.

Resolution B-033
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 11:03 am

RESOLUTION B-033 to be introduced at Joint SessionResolution B-033
Resolved, the House of Deputies concurring, that the 75th General Convention receive and embrace The Windsor Report’s invitation to engage in a process of heaing and reconcilation; and be it further

Resolved, that this Convention therefore call upon Standing Committees and bishops with jurisdiction to exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecreation of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion.

Proposer:The Rev’d Dorsey F. Henderson (Upper South Carolina)
Endorsers:The Rt. Rev’d Peter James Lee (Virginia)The Rt. Rev’d Edward S. Little II (Northern Indiana)The Rt. Rv. Robert J. O’Neill (Colorado)The Rt. Rev’d Geralyn Wolfe (Rhode Island)
Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit 20 Comments »

Please follow these sites for news

Stand Firm Main if you birthyear ends in odd number

StandFirm Backup if your birthyear ends in even number

the CaNN GenCon06 backup site "Elfbunker"

This elf is too tired to post news for a bit. Can't type. Can't think. Will be posting again here soon.

Breaking as posted on GenCon06 (elfbunker)

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

- BABY BLUE-- "Gene Robinson says that new resolution does not prohibit the election and consecreation of partnered gay bishops in the Episcopal Church." Word has it the HoB is blowing up.. Griz has just said words to the effect that if nothing is concluded by lunch then it's all over: "Frankly of we are not finished by lunch we will have nothing. And frankly if we have nothing we will likely not be invited to Lambeth. We need something clear." ... (BB)

Stand Firm Reports

CURRENTLY DEBATING: Resolved, the House of Deputies concurring, that the 75th General Convention receive and embrace The Windsor Report's invitation to engage in a process of healing and reconciliation; and be it furtherResolved, that this Convention therefore call upon Standing Committees and bishops with jurisdiction to exercise restraint in considering the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion.

Resolution coming

Sorry just back online after a meeting. Will be posting news ASAP

Bishop Schori's Sermon at this morning's Eucharist

Source: Anglican Mainstream

Presiding Bishop Elect preaches about Mother Jesus
“Our mother Jesus gives birth to a new creation and we are his children. We are going to have to give up fear.”

Sermon on John 18
This last Sunday morning I woke early while it was still dark. I wanted to go out for a run. When I ventured out, it was warm and still and quiet. The clouds were just beginning to show tinges of pink. I startled two workers coming out of the service doors of the Hyatt. I encountered a man I had seen at the convention centre. The I found a lovely green park and ran around it. A man in a reflective vest was waiting by some cones. Around the corner I came to a fellow with some bags who looked like he had been sleeping rough. Then I met a rabbit, one of us eyed the other with more than a little wariness. Around the corner was a woman getting out of a car delivering papers. I nodded at two guys on their way of work. There was some degree of wariness in each of those meetings. The unrealised possibility of a real relationship whether out of caution or fear meant we had long way to go.

Can we meet in a stance that is not tinged with fear. When Jesus says that his kingdom is not of this world, he is saying that his rule is not based on an ability to generate fear in his subjects. His willingness to go to the cross means that fear has no import. King Jesus’s followers do not fight back when the world threatens.

Jesus calls us friends, not agents of fear.

If you and I are going to grow into the full stature of Christ, and be the blessed one’s God calls to be. Our growth will be rooted in the soil of internal peace, souls that are planted in the overwhelming love of God, given with such unwillingness to count the cost that we too are caught up in similar abandonment. This drives out our idolatrous self interest. Fear is a reaction, unconscious response to something that is so essential that it takes the place of God. I cannot go on living without it, my bank account, my theological framework, or my sense of being in control.

That bloody cross brings new life into the world. Colossians calls Jesus the first born of all creation.

Our mother Jesus gives birth to a new creation and we are his children. We are going to have to give up fear. Do not be afraid. God is with you. You are God’s beloved and God is well pleased with you. When we know ourselves as beloved. We can recognise another beloved in a homeless man, a rhetorical opponent. We can reach beyond the defences of others. Our invitation in the last work of this convention is to lay down our fear and love the world. Lay down our shield and sword, lay down our narrow self interest. Lay down our need for power and control, and bow to God’s image in the weakest, poorest and most excluded.

We children of Jesus can continue to squabble over our inheritance. We must share the name beloved with the whole world.

Applause and standing ovation.

News Release: Anglican Essentials

Anglican Essentials Canada NEWS RELEASE

Episcopal Church General Convention votes to “walk apart” from Global Anglican Communion by Clear Rejection of Windsor Report Recommendations

Columbus, OH - Anglican Essentials Canada expresses solidarity and empathy with our orthodox brothers and sisters in the U.S. who are grieving the actions of the General Convention of the Episcopal Church (TEC formerly ECUSA) this week. These actions make clear the intention of TEC to “walk apart” or separate from the global Anglican Communion.

While we hoped and prayed that they would repent and accept the recommendations of the Windsor Report, we are thankful for the clarity given by their actions. In defeating Motion A161, TEC not only refused to express any regret for their actions which have “torn the fabric of the Communion at its deepest level”, but they have also clearly and unequivocally rejected the recommendations of the Windsor Report.

The recommendations of the Windsor Report were made to help heal this wounded Communion, but instead TEC has further destabilized it with this vote.In addition, the election of Presiding Bishop-Elect, Katharine Jefferts Schori, whose theological position is well known and contrary to the expressed position of the Anglican Communion on issues of human sexuality will exacerbate further the current tensions in the Communion and in the ongoing Ecumenical dialogue with other Christian denominations.

We are deeply grateful for the biblical stand taken by faithful individuals and organizations throughout the proceedings of the General Convention, particularly Bishop Robert Duncan, Canon David Anderson, Canon Kendall Harmon, the Anglican Communion Network and the American Anglican Council.

The actions of the Episcopal Church this week have increased greatly our concern for the Anglican Church of Canada, which has also been called to address and respond to the recommendations of the Windsor Report at our General Synod in 2007. Anglican Essentials Canada is strengthened in our resolve to remain in full communion with the global Anglican Communion and we pray that the Anglican Church of Canada will not vote to “walk apart” from that Communion as TEC has done.

Michael Daley Phone: +1.647.722.3336/+44 (0)2070 783 943
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For those of you who like this kind of thing
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 8:56 am

Stand Firm have dug into ECUSA’s Canons related to the joint session of Bishops and Deputies:

Canon regarding right of PB to call joint session

Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit No Comments »


Episcopal vote backs gay bishops
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 8:49 am

Columbus, Ohio - After days of deliberation, the Episcopal Church’s House of Deputies voted against restricting the consecration of bishops living openly in same-sex unions.
The decision came Tuesday at the Episcopal Church’s 75th General Convention just one day after the same body voiced regret over the rift caused in 2003 when the denomination consecrated an openly gay man, the Rev. Gene Robinson, as bishop of New Hampshire.
The debate over homosexuality has not yet ended, though. The Episcopal Church’s House of Bishops discussed a similar resolution Tuesday night and resolved to resume debate today, possibly in a joint meeting between the bishops and deputies….

Conservatives voiced a mixture of defeat and muted optimism.

Fort Worth Bishop Jack Iker predicted fallout from the Anglican Communion. ‘It’s a great disappointment to those of us who are trying to rebuild the relationship with the greater Anglican Communion,’ Iker said. ‘I expect there will be some kind of statement from the archbishop of Canterbury tomorrow. I think he’ll respond with disappointment.’

The Rev. Kendall Harmon, the South Carolina Canon theologian and a convention deputy, holds out hope that the convention will pass a resolution to satisfy the Windsor Report. Issued in 2004, the report came out of a commission appointed by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams to mend fissures in the Anglican Communion.
‘It’s not over until it’s over,’ Harmon said. ‘But the possibilities to positively respond to the Windsor Report are increasingly slim.’

Read it all.

Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit No Comments »


Clarifications from Bishop John Howe
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 8:46 am

In response to many rumors circulating on listservs and various websites, Bishop Howe has written a clarification of where he stands and what is happenig for his diocese. Received via e-mail and posted with permission.

Bishop Howe writes:
General Convention has reached an impasse. Resolution A161, which bundled most of the “Windsor” responses into a single resolution, was defeated by the House of Deputies. The incoming President of Deputies, Bonnie Anderson, moved for reconsideration (which requires 2/3 agreement), and about 60% of the Deputies agreed to reconsider. Reconsideration was defeated.

The Bishops of the Special Committee immediately flew into gear to redraft Resolution A162, which they had previously planned to (ask to) dismiss. In effect, they recreated A161, although the paragraphs were slightly rearranged.
Under the rules of the House of Deputies, “Neither a Question once determined, nor any Question of like import, shall be drawn again into debate or presented for action again during the same Convention, except upon the adoption of a motion to reconsider….”
Since a call to Reconsider has already been made and defeated, I raised a point of order in the House of Bishops of whether our consideration of A162 wouldn’t be an exercise in futility, since, whatever we might do with A162, the Deputies could not consider it.
We did not consider the Resolution in a legislative sense, but we discussed the issues for about an hour and a half, before the Presiding Bishop said he would call for a special joint session of both Houses tomorrow following the Eucharist.

He asked the members of the Special Committee to draft a new Resolution to be considered by both Houses.

Let me tell you where I think we are. I have never heard such a high level of hope and desire among the Bishops to preserve our relationship with Canterbury and the rest of the Communion. This is real. It is deep. It is impassioned.

But for many, almost certainly a majority of our Bishops, their view that these matters are “justice” issues for gays and lesbians, and that “we cannot preserve the unity of the Communion at the expense of one segment of the Body of Christ” is equally real, deep, and passionate.

Thus, we are, quite simply, “one church with two minds” as one of the Bishops put it.
Somewhere I read that “a house divided against itself cannot stand.” We can (and do) admit that we are divided against ourselves. Which is to say that we are united about being divided! But whether we can live with the division is what (part of) this whole debate is all about.

I have consistently told you that I can envision no scenario in which we will adequately agree to what the Windsor Report and the Primates have asked of us. (I would love nothing more than to be proven wrong about this tomorrow!) It is remarkable that we are coming down to the closing hours of the Convention, with many people already leaving, and this most urgent piece of business, which has been before us for the past three years, is still so undecided.

A bit more about Katharine Jefferts Schori. At the time of her election I did not know she had authorized same-sex blessings in Nevada. Of course I knew she had consented to the election of the Bishop of New Hampshire, but we were (and are) in the process of re-evaluating that decision, and responding to the Communion’s objections to it.
Thus, when I said to her, “Come visit Central Florida,” it was on the assumption many of you would want to meet the new Presiding Bishop, and interact with her first hand.
I have since questioned her about the blessings. She said she has not authorized them in the sense of approving or establishing a Rite, but of “permitting a pastoral response” within a congregation that wishes to provide support to a gay or lesbian couple. She said she believes there have been two such instances that have taken place in Nevada.
I told her our Diocesan Convention was very clearly on record as not wanting anyone who had made even that kind of an authorization to be invited to Central Florida, and that we probably would not be able to arrange for her to visit.

I understand it has been reported that I voted in favor of her election. I did not.
I told you I will “support” her. Of course I will, as I would anyone who was elected Presiding Bishop. Does that mean I agree with her? Of course it does not. I am simply amazed that anyone could even ask the question.

It has also been reported that I am about to try to take the Diocese of Central Florida out of the Episcopal Church, and that I “have the papers all drawn up.” (Whatever that means!) Equally false.

Please pray for us as we go into tomorrow’s session. I cannot overstate how much hangs in the balance.

John W. Howe
John Howe is the Bishop of Central Florida

Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit 5 Comments »


From the Keep Your Sense of Humor Department
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 8:39 am

So far I have walked into two closets in bathrooms instead of the exit door. Today I did even better.

I left the hotel room with the computer bag but not the computer.

Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit 2 Comments »


Sam Candler: The Episcopal Church Needs Mercy
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:59 am

“Show us your mercy, Lord; and grant us your salvation.” I plead this morning for mercy, mercy from our brothers and sisters in the Anglican Communion, from within our own Episcopal Church, and from the world itself that is waiting and watching for salvation.
Have mercy on us as the Episcopal Church clings to two different, and perhaps competing, truths.

One truth is that we commit ourselves to this evolving and sacred mystery that is the Anglican Communion. We are Anglicans and proud of it. We earnestly desire the highest degree of communion possible with other Anglicans. We want to walk together with folks who share our common heritage (and with Christians everywhere, for that matter).
The second truth, just as urgent for many of us, is the truth of blessed same-sex unions among our faithful local communities. We have witnessed some of that blessed grace on the very floor of convention, and many of us believe that God can call such leadership to the episcopate. How, and where, can these truths be expressed together in a coherent way? I believe there is such a place, a place described in Psalm 85, where “mercy and truth meet together, where righteousness and peace kiss each other.” Let us cling to that place.

I believe we can go forward in the name of mercy and truth, and with deep, deep respect for the right and for the left in this church. The Episcopal Church walks in the Spirit when we do not discard the right and when we do not abandon the left.

The Episcopal Church is not the middle way. The Episcopal Church is the comprehensive way, which includes fully the right and the left. Mercy and truth can meet together. It will be a miracle, yes, and I believe in miracles.

–The Very Reverend Samuel G. Candler is Dean of the Cathedral of St. Philip in Atlanta, Georgia

Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit 24 Comments »


Schism threat after failure of middle way
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:54 am

The strategy of leaders of the Anglican church at Columbus had been to engineer the moderate middle ground to be Windsor-compliant, marginalising the radical liberals and the orthodox, for the sake of unity.

This strategy failed.

In the end, the key resolutions were too liberal for the conservatives or too conservative for the liberals.

Read it all.

There is a thought–a strategic failure. A systemic failure. A leadership failure. So far, it has been all those things.

Let us not then blame Kendall Harmon or Susan Russell for asking for honesty and clarity and calling people to vote for their convictions. Nor let us blame the many good government and due process types who could see an inadequate resolution for what it was. But let us also see what today brings and whether we will respond clearly and honestly to what the Windsor report specifically asks of us as a Province–KSH.

Posted in ECUSA GC06 Edit 8 Comments »


Posts: Midnight - 6 a.m. Wed June 21

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June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 6:29 am

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In Response to the Exhausting caricatures of Reasserters
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:12 am

In the Alice-in-Wonderland world of General Convention the ability to keep some kind of perspective is not good at all.With that said, however, there is a theme which I find very frustrating in what I have been able to read this morning.It is the tag against reasserters (interestingly in a number of places it is only reasserters who get the blame) that somehow we are trying for failure.

Here for example is Jim Naughton:

“What’s happening is that the left, which doesn’t want to restrict us on the gay bishops issue, and the right, which wants us to fail to respond to Windsor in any meaningful way so that this failure can be used against us in the Communion, are outmaneuvering the middle.”

Or here is one of many emails:

“Those on the left are happy to be thumbing their nose at the Anglican Communion and asserting our American individualism, which is really just another form of imperialism. Those on the right are glad to speak and voteagainst A161 so now they can claim the Episcopal church has turned its back on the Communion (indeed I’ve already heard that).”

While I grant that there perhaps are a very very few reasserters here who really do want this (and I marvel at people claiming to know others motivations in these contexts anyway) it is an unfair caricature of the vast majority of us who are here. We are seeking to ask the General Convention to adopt the basic calls of the Windsor Report which themselves are a compromise. It is unfair and untrue to portray us as is being done above.

I have made this argument already but it is worth quoting again:
“We believe the Windsor Report is a big compromise. There are all kinds of extremely important issues which remain unaddressed in the report’s recommendations. It is, however, a unanimous report by some Anglicans throughout the world, which has been viewed as the positive way forward by many Anglican leaders and groups. We take this very seriously as a minimum step to create the space necessary for any healing for a Communion that has been severely damaged by conflict.”

My deep disagreement with what I am reading is this: these are intraprovincial perspectives. In other words, they take as their starting point our own province, and really our own General Convention, and they seek to use that as the entirety of the backdrop in which is played out.

Hello–this is a global Anglican crisis! Where is the reference to what the rest of the Anglican world is saying and what the rest of the Anglican world thinks? Why is General Convention and committee 26 the only focus instead of the Primates meeting, the Archbshop of Canterbury, and the Windsor Report, and other international factors?
Frank Wade, deputy from Washington, keeps talking about continuing the conversation. We cannot possibly do that unless we stop doing what we are doing. It makes no sense for the Communion to talk about whether to do something which the Episcopal Church is going to continue to do, especially since it is a decision for the whole church and the majority of Anglicans believe the what TEC has done is a departure from apostolic faith and practice.

This is the issue–will we agree to stop doing what we have been asked to stop doing. THAT will create space. THAT is a compromise. THAT is what has been requested of us. THAT is what reasserters are after at this Convention.

Seeking that goal is anything but extreme. The fact that it is being caricatured as such simply reflects how distorted things are from inside the world of TEC in general and General Convention in particular–KSH.

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Bishops, Deputies to meet in joint Windsor session
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:48 am

Lipscomb moved that the House adopt the Windsor Report, and to send a message to the House of Deputies but later withdrew the motion to honor the Presiding Bishop’s request for the joint session.

Bishop Keith Ackerman of Quincy said “we’re dealing with a relative impasse. It’s extraordinarily painful, but I believe that’s what’s occurred.”

Bishop Charles Jenkins of Louisiana said the Church should “shift the anxiety back to those who gave it to us, put it back where it belongs. I believe what we have is one church with two minds. To say that is to say something very plain to the Anglican Communion.”
Bishop William Gregg of Eastern Oregon pointed out that the Windsor Report invites the Episcopal Church on a journey and calls all its members to conversation. “Not that we have answers. We’re going to explore. We’re going to ask the questions, we’re going to get it wrong, we’re going to fall down, but we’re going to do it together,” he said.

Building upon comments by Jenkins, Pierre Whalon, bishop in charge of the Convocation of American Churches in Europe, said, “it is one church of several minds.”

After an hour’s discussion, Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold asked for the bishops and deputies on the Special Committee to meet to prepare a resolution for the joint session.

Read it all.

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Episcopalians defeat bid to nix more gay bishops
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:44 am

Bishops agonized over a response last night, deciding to hold an emergency joint session this morning with deputies to try to persuade them to change their minds, although it was not clear they would succeed. The bishops said they felt pressured by the Windsor Report, a 2004 document by international Anglican leaders in response to the 2003 consecration of openly homosexual V. Gene Robinson as New Hampshire bishop, demanding that Episcopalians cease from allowing same-sex blessings and homosexual bishops.Bishop Robinson begged deputies last night not to block men like him from the episcopate.“I desperately want to preserve this communion,” he said, “but I cannot do so at the expense of my own integrity and those of my gay and lesbian brothers and sisters in Christ, some of whom would make great bishops … . How can I vote no from any resolution that removes gay and lesbian people from the Episcopal gene pool?”What killed A161 was a potent combination of liberal and conservative Episcopalians who either said the resolution was too strong or too weak. Both factions going into the nine-day convention said they desired “clarity” on where the 2.2-million-member church really stands on sexual-morality issues.But Virginia Bishop Peter J. Lee, a member of the subcommittee that drafted A161, pronounced himself “disappointed” with the resolution’s failure.“I really think the bishops will want somehow to recover that some way,” he said, adding that bishops may cobble language from A161 into another resolution or, as a last resort, come up with a “mind of the House” of Bishops stating that they at least intend to comply with the Windsor Report.“That would be a less-authoritative statement by the Episcopal Church,” he said, “but at least it would deal with the basic question of consent to [homosexual] bishops.”

Read it all.

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John Burwell’s report on General Convention Day Eight (yesterday)
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:39 am

Read it all.

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Lionel E. Deimel: Is the Episcopal Church About to Surrender?
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:32 am

On Thursday, June 15, Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold asserted that—I apologize if this is not an exact quotation, but it is what I wrote down—“God’s concern is the world, not the Church.” That observation should inform what General Convention does at this critical time.

The actions of the 74th General Convention (and the years of discussion and steps taken that brought the church to where it found itself in 2003) were driven by pastoral concerns, by a willingness to be open to the voice of the Holy Spirit, and by an understanding that there is no such thing as “the clear meaning of Scripture.” Being a Christian does not absolve a one of the need to do hard work to discover what God would have one do in a particular time and place.

What is clear in Columbus is that the Episcopal Church, at least as represented by those participating in General Convention, believes in what was done at the last General Convention. Elements of the Anglican Communion reacted badly—I choose the word advisedly—to our actions. We have been asked to repent, and to declare moratoria on the consecration of openly gay bishops and on moving forward on the blessing of same sex unions.

The question we should ask is: Are we to follow our notion of what God is calling us to do in his world, or are we to try to “preserve” the Anglican Communion, a part, albeit a small part, of Christ’s Church? Is our concern the world or the Church?

Read it all.

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A Houston Chronicle editorial: Wrong division
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:26 am

This is an era when the nation is at war with global terrorists and could be attacked at any time. Many Americans are trapped in poverty and ignorance, and most face an uncertain future. At such a time, the deep national divide and animosity over same-sex unions is unnecessary and inappropriate.

So it is with Episcopalians. In his sermon on June 11, Trinity Sunday, the Very Rev. Joe D. Reynolds, dean of Christ Church Cathedral in Houston, stated the case as well as anyone:
“In the religion section of the Houston Chronicle yesterday the dominant headline … says: ‘Episcopal Struggle Heats Up.’ The article deals mostly with the controversy surrounding the inclusion of gay and lesbian people in the life of the church … .

“I would like to see different headlines … I would like to see a headline that says, “Episcopal Church Explores the Possibility of Peacemaking” or “Episcopal Church Brings Its Resources to Bear on the Plight of the Poor.”

Read the entire piece.

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Episcopal, Presbyterian Leaders Rule on Gay Clergy
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:23 am

Episcopal church leaders on Tuesday rejected a temporary ban against gay bishops, while Presbyterians agreed to let local and regional governing bodies decide whether to ordain gay or lesbian ministers.

The actions by the churches’ governing assemblies could cause further rifts in denominations already coping with theological divisions over homosexuality and declining membership.

The Episcopal House of Deputies, composed of more than 800 lay leaders and clergy, has been meeting in Columbus, Ohio. The Episcopal Church, with 2.3 million members in the U.S., is part of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

Leading Anglican officials had asked the U.S. church to approve a temporary ban on gay bishops after V. Gene Robinson, who is gay, was elected bishop of New Hampshire three years ago. His election outraged conservatives, who constitute a minority in the U.S. church but who dominate some congregations overseas.

Robinson is the nation’s only openly gay Episcopal bishop, though in May, two gay men and a lesbian were among six finalists to become bishop of a Bay Area diocese.
“I was very pleased that they voted it down,” said the Rev. Ed Bacon, rector of All Saints Church in Pasadena, who was at the meeting.

Bacon, in a telephone interview, said conservatives who want to stay with the Anglican Communion were disappointed by the vote. “I would say right now the church is significantly polarized,” he said.

Read the whole piece.

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Presbyterians revisit the Trinity
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:20 am

The divine Trinity–”Father, Son and Holy Spirit”–could also be known as “Mother, Child and Womb” or “Rock, Redeemer and Friend” at some Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) services under an action Monday by the church’s national assembly.

Delegates to the meeting voted to “receive” a policy paper on gender-inclusive language for the Trinity, a step short of approving it. That means church officials can propose experimental liturgies with alternative phrasings for the Trinity, but congregations won’t be required to use them.

“This does not alter the church’s theological position, but provides an educational resource to enhance the spiritual life of our membership,” legislative committee chairwoman Nancy Olthoff, an Iowa laywoman, said during Monday’s debate on the Trinity.

The assembly narrowly defeated a bid to refer the paper back for further study.
A panel that worked on the issue since 2000 said the classical language for the Trinity should still be used, but added that Presbyterians also should seek “fresh ways to speak of the mystery of the triune God” to “expand the church’s vocabulary of praise and wonder.”

Read it all.

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From the Email Bag
June 21st, 2006 posted by kendall at 5:19 am

I know this is a busy and trying time for you, and I don’t know when you’ll actually read this note, but I was reminded of the quote below in reading coverage of the effort to draft suitable resolutions for ECUSA’s response to the Windsor report.
In 1888, there were some significant theological debates going on among English Baptists, being conducted under the auspices of Council of the Baptist Union. The robust and powerful preacher Charles H. Spurgeon wrote to the Council urging clarity of speech in the interest of honesty.

“Whatever the Council does,” wrote Spurgeon, “let it above all things avoid the use of language which could legitimately have two meanings contrary to one another. Let us be plain and outspoken. There are grave differences–let them be avowed honestly. Why should any man be ashamed to do so? . . . [C]ompromise by the use of double meanings can never in the long run be wise.”

In such controversies, Spurgeon was consistently opposed to “unity” that was merely a verbal technicality. It is always dangerous to say “Peace, peace,” when there is no peace. I have long worried that the genius of Anglicanism is the facility to craft language that obscures matters about which we deeply differ.
God be with you,

The elves must add a P.S. to this. The “coincidence” (Not!) is too stunning. While Kendall was posting this, we were busy working on the GenCon06 blog where our prayer leader, “the mitred abbess” has posted today’s devotional from Spurgeon, having no idea re: what Kendall was posting here on Titusonenine about Spurgeon. Awesome. Here’s the link

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David Simmons: Is this my church?
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 2:08 am

The odd voting pattern on A161 certainly has gotten folks attention. Here’s what David Simmons (”Ask the Priest”) has to say”

What was more disturbing was how people voted. Both the extreme left and the extreme right voted “no” in a rather unusual alliance. The only way I can interpret that is that they are both disinterested in a Via Media or middle way. The right would like to see these defeated so they can then claim we “failed to honor Windsor.” The left is unwilling to compromise their perception of justice even a bit. Both sides would rather maintain the purity of their position than enter into a costly relationship that means compromise for the sake of Christ.

IS there a place left for me as a moderate in the Episcopal Church, or do you now have to choose between two dichotomies? If so, it simply means that the modern American Political culture has overtaken the diverse church I love and we are unable to act with prayerful compromise like our forbears have done at General Convention for a couple of centuries. Some of this may have to do with generational theory, but I’m not going into that here.

Luckily, the deputies are not the entire General Convention. The Presiding Bishop, Frank Griswold, has called for a joint session of the houses tomorrow. I believe he will gently tell us how much is at stake and how we need to give our new female presiding bishop SOMETHING to take to the Anglican Communion since she’s already at a disadvantage.
Stay tuned…..

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The Battle in the Heavenlies
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 1:39 am

Of particular note, Fr. Andy (Colorado) discusses the “conspiracy theory” rumors that the Network dioceses deliberately undermined passage of A161.

Day#8: The Battle In The HeavenliesJune/20/2006 10:37 PM

The summary of the key events of this day: with everything hanging in the balance — constraint, conciliarity, communion, and covenant — the General Convention of the Episcopal Church failed to respond with sufficient clarity to the recommendations of the Windsor Report. With stunning speed in the first half hour of the afternoon session, the House voted out of order a substitute resolution that would have put before them a series of quotations from Windsor. It then proceeded to defeat handily an Omnibus Resolution representing the Special Committee’s balanced best work and good faith on the two key moratoria asked for. Regarding the question of moratoria, it looks like the Convention will give no response to Windsor.

A Role Call of the vote was read and it was striking how many “conservative” diocese voted this resolution down with the others. Still I would like to put rest immediately a grassy knoll theory you will hear, that is, that the left and the right joined together to deny the middle. That would not get at what happened here. Not an hour later I ran into Ellis Brust, the public relations officer of the AAC. He confirmed that there are at most 10 “Network” Dioceses. In a vote by orders the lay and clerical votes of each Deputation are counted as one vote. The resolutions were defeated by a margin of 12 votes in the Clerical Order and 17 votes in the lay order. [Math checked by none other than Larry Hitt, our Diocesan Chancellor!]

So did the minoritarian right join the majoritarian left to defeat the vast middle? The gap just cannot be bridge by purely conservative votes, though it might bear more expert analysis. Even so, it is notoriously hard to say how and why folks in the minority vote their conscience. I don’t believe any resolution on these matters would have passed period, much less if all the “strict Windsor constructionists” had voted for them. The House has shown on the key issue, that it is just not prepared to distance themselves, slow down, or otherwise step back from the action it took in 2003.

So now the question becomes, is any response better than none? Earlier this week I had thought that the chief goal was to get language that could echo Windsor as much as possible and that might pass the House of Deputies. But it appears that the prophetic-secretariat on both the left and the right has understood how the legislative process of our church works, better in fact than those in charge of it. For some mysterious reason, the Windsor resolutions were always sent by Dispatch to be heard first by the House of Deputies. At first I thought this was a good idea because it meant that the House wouldn’t feel dictated to by the Bishops. But then I listened to the Bishops and realized it was otherwise.

Here’s what happened late this afternoon. Hearing that the Windsor Resolutions were defeated, the House of Bishops realized it needed to do something. So they began to debate whether they could offer the Deputies another resolution or the Communion a “mind of the House” resolution. What unfolded was far from assuring. It turns out that the Bishops had really never had this debate before, and that they are a group that is much less “political”. After all, for the most part, they like each other, they like being bishops, they like doing things in a very gentlemanly and sisterly way. As bishop after bishop rose to speak, as if talking past each other, making it clear they had delayed this conversation for months, I could conclude only one thing: there was no leadership here.
I began my first blog thoughts coming to Columbus thinking that it would be the Bishops for once that would show leadership and guide us through. Unless they can pull off a miracle tomorrow with a planned joint session of the House, it will appear that I was naive and that the prophets will have a field day. I am praying that the Bishops can act effectively tomorrow as the stated goal is to bring another resolution to the floor, if even to express honestly that the Episcopal Church is official[ly] a “house divided.”

Read the rest of this entry »

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+Peter Lee: Action of Some Clarity is Needed
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 1:34 am

Action of Some Clarity is Necessary
By The Rt. Rev. Peter James Lee

These words are written before the outcome of the 75th General Convention is clear, at least in the area of the Convention response to the Windsor Report. What is clear is that the complexities of the Convention’s legislative process get in the way of a prayerful process of different people from different perspectives coming to a unity of mission that transcends differences.

But that prayerful process has certainly been present. I served on the Special Legislative Committee that dealt with all resolutions having to do with the Windsor Report. Complex procedural processes were present but did not silence the civil and courteous exchanges that led our committee to offer resolutions that most of us believe represented a substantial response to the requests of the Anglican Communion through the Windsor Report.

The challenge before both houses today is one of seeking a way to say clearly to the Anglican Communion that we are committed to the Communion, that we accept the cost to us of following the recommendations of the Windsor Report, and that we do so while simultaneously recognizing and listening to our gay and lesbian brother and sisters and responding to their concerns.

The legislative barriers today include the understandable desires of bishops and deputies to speak often and to amend frequently. Those desires should be restrained. It may be necessary for the House of Bishops today to exercise leadership by adopting a Mind of the House resolution that commits the bishops to follow the Windsor Report. It is far preferable for the whole convention to act, but action of some clarity is necessary.
In Executive Session yesterday, one bishop told the touching story that he gave a son a prayer book autographed by Katharine Jefferts Schori and Gene Robinson because they are signs of the broad embrace of the church of the future.

To enter that future, we need to walk with others in the Communion. And with the inspired leadership of Bishop Jefferts Schori, we will enter the Communion of the future with the broad embrace that is characteristic of who we are.

This Convention revealed the diversity of our Church, the limitations of a legislative process to pastoral and mission concerns, and the hope of the future with the election of Bishop Jefferts Schori as Presiding Bishop, the adoption of a mission-oriented budget, and the Church’s commitment to the Millenium Development Goals.

From the Center Aisle for June 21

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Walking Together or Walking Apart?
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 1:31 am

David Montzingo of San Diego explains what actions he believes point to a decision to walk apart:

Walking Together or Walking Apart?
The last paragraph of the Windsor Report (157) begins with these words: “There remains a very real danger that we will not choose to walk together. Should the call to halt and find ways of continuing in our present communion not be heeded, then we shall have to learn to begin to walk apart.” After today’s General Convention actions, I feel we are on the brink of choosing to walk apart from the rest of the Anglican Communion. Perhaps something will happen tomorrow in an extraordinary joint session of the Bishops and Deputies, called by the Presiding Bishop. However, in all honesty, I am pessimistic about our chances of remaining together. Why do I feel this way?

First, because we rejected the call of the Windsor Report to effect a moratorium on the selection of any bishop in a same-gender relationship and on the approval of public rites for blessing same-gender relationships (paragraphs 134, 143). We had both a very weak resolution and a strong substitute for it to consider today—both were voted down. We did pass resolutions expressing our desire to remain within the Anglican Communion and participate in the development of an Anglican Communion Covenant. But these are simply not enough.

Second, because we voted to discharge (not deal with) a resolution titled “Salvation Through Christ Alone.” The debate about dicharge centered around the question, “Why do we need to even consider a resolution such as this one?” But as people spoke, it was clear to me that many in our Church are uncomfortable with Jesus as the only way to salvation—it seems narrow, restrictive, and insensitive. I wonder how this unwillingness to affirm a core doctrine of our Christian faith will play in other provinces of the Anglican Communion.

Third, because we consented to the consecration of Barry Beisner as the next Bishop of Northern California. Canon Beisner is, by all accounts, a gifted priest and likeable person. However, he has been divorced and remarried twice. While we have other bishops who have been divorced and remarried, he will be the first to have done so twice. In both 1 Timothy 3.2 and Titus 1.6 St. Paul writes that a bishop should be “the husband of one wife.” This is usually taken to mean that divorce is an major impediment to the office of oversight in the Church. Taken together with Bishop Robinson’s same-gender relationship, the Episcopal Church appears to have abandoned traditional sexual morality at every level, including its leadership. Our Anglican brothers and sisters in other places will have more problems with this.

Fourth, because our new Presiding Bishop, the Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, appears to be willing to walk apart from the rest of the Anglican Communion in order to maintain the present direction of the Episcopal Church. While she values our relationships with other Anglican Churches, she is wary of letting them dictate policy to us. But the Windsor Report does ask us to cease moving in certain directions unless a new consensus develops in the whole Anglican Communion. Her words and deeds will be scrutinized closely by other Anglican leaders to see if she wants us to pay the price for walking together.
Personally, I want to thank the Rev. Rober Certain, rector of St. Margaret’s Church in Palm Desert, for allowing me to take his spot on the House of Deputies’ floor this morning. It feels much different being on the floor than it does being in the alternate area. Unfortunately, during my time on the floor, we voted only on procedural matters, not on substance. The Deputies spend way, way too much time on procedure and process, and not nearly enough time on substantive debate.

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Elizabeth Kaeton on A166 — the Anglican Covenant Process
June 21st, 2006 posted by admin at 12:37 am

Elizabeth Kaeton shares her concerns about Resolution A166. She says ECUSA just wrote a blank check and that the result will be a magesterium and foreign rule.

However, we wrote a blank check in Resolution A166 – the Anglican Covenant Development Process. We have no active participatory role in the development of this Covenant.

Take a minute to get your head wrapped around that one. I don’t think even the Radical Right has taken in the full implication of that one yet.

Okay, ready? I’m going to repeat it. Here it is again: We have no active participatory role in the development of the proposed Anglican Covenant.

We are “supporting the process,” and asking the Executive Committee and our members of the Anglican Consultative Council – who, you will remember, were DISINVITED while we continue to fully fund our membership – to “follow” the process of covenant development and report it to the 76th General Convention.

Nothing else. Our role is essentially passive. We granted ourselves no active participatory role in the development process.

So, here’s my question: How can there be an authentic covenant if there is not active participation of all of its constituent members in its development?

Ahem . . . . Can you say, ‘magisterium’?

It is becoming reality – The Episcopal Church is becoming more and more dominated by the same ‘foreign rule’ that provided the impulse for the first Reformation. Except, of course, that the purple sacristy slipper is on the other foot, as it were. Now it is England that is the “foreign rule” to America, instead of the Britons objecting to Roman rule.

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