Thursday, November 02, 2006

November 2: late afternoon posts

The Bulletin for Katharine Jefferts Schori’s November 4 Investiture Service

November 2nd, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:32 pm

Read it carefully (a pdf download of some size).

Tending a Fallen Marine, With Skill, Prayer and Fury

November 2nd, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:22 pm

Petty Officer Third Class Dustin E. Kirby clutched the injured marine’s empty helmet. His hands were coated in blood. Sweat ran down his face, which he was trying to keep straight but kept twisting into a snarl.

He held up the helmet and flipped it, exposing the inside. It was lined with blood and splinters of bone.

“The round hit him,” he said, pausing to point at a tiny hole that aligned roughly with a man’s temple. “Right here.”

Petty Officer Kirby, 22, is a Navy corpsman, the trauma medic assigned to Second Mobile Assault Platoon of Weapons Company, Second Battalion, Eighth Marines. Everyone calls him Doc. He had just finished treating a marine who had been shot by an Iraqi sniper.

“It was 7.62 millimeter,” he continued. “Armor piercing.”

He reached into his pocket and retrieved the bullet, which he had found. “The impact with the Kevlar stopped most of it,” he said. “But it tore through, hit his head, went through and came out.”

He put the bullet in his breast pocket, to give to an intelligence team later. Sweat kept rolling off his face, mixed with tears. His voice was almost cracking, but he managed to control it and keep it deep. “When I got there, there wasn’t much I could do,” he said.

Then he nodded. He seemed to be talking to himself. “I kept him breathing,” he said.

He looked at Lance Cpl. Matias Tafoya, his driver, and raised his voice. It was almost a shout. “When I told you that I do not let people die on me, I meant it,” he said. “I meant it.”

Read it all from the front page of today’s New York Times.

Aspen clergy discuss civil unions

November 2nd, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:20 pm

The idea of homosexual unions, by any name, is a politically charged topic. This month, Colorado voters will have the chance to legalize “domestic partnerships,” which supporters say is not gay marriage, by passing Referendum I.

Leaders of several of Aspen’s religious organizations have shared their thoughts on the measure, which, if it passes, will confer rights and responsibilities to same-sex couples who choose to enter the legally binding relationship. None said they tell their congregations how to vote, but they did share some of their personal thoughts and general church doctrine.

Episcopal Church

Nationally speaking, the topic of same-sex unions is a “hot-button” issue in the Episcopal Church, said Christ Episcopal Church’s Father Bruce McNab.

Locally, he says his church has no official policy on the measure, and he intends to vote for it.

The Episcopal Church grew out of England’s Anglican Church, and, McNab said, “Most of the Anglican Communion, of which our church is a part, is very conservative.” When it comes to the issue of homosexuality, though, “the North Americans tend to be a little more left of center,” he said.

Several years ago, an Episcopal church in New Hampshire elected an openly gay man, Eugene Robinson, as bishop, causing a nationwide rift in the church. Following that ordination, some Episcopal churches in the U.S. chose to realign with the more traditional Anglican Church.

While the subject has been somewhat divisive on a national level, McNab said he doesn’t see it as controversial in his congregation in Aspen.

“If it is, nobody has brought it to my attention,” he said.

And even if it were, he said, it wouldn’t be appropriate to tell his congregation how to cast its ballots.

“I would be out of order if I told people how to vote,” he said.

The full text is here.

Bangor Cathedral bans George Carey as a ‘divisive force’

November 2nd, 2006 posted by kendall at 6:20 pm

By Ruth Gledhill, Religion Correspondent

The former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey of Clifton, has been banned from one of the oldest cathedrals in Britain after accusations that he has become an “instrument of disunity”.

Lord Carey, who has become a champion of orthodoxy in the Anglican Church since stepping down from the top job in 2002, was due to speak at Bangor Cathedral, North Wales, in February. The Dean of Bangor, the Very Rev Alun Hawkins, is understood to have imposed the unprecedented ban because he feels that Lord Carey has become a “divisive force” and has been “disloyal” to his successor, Dr Rowan Williams, who was born in Wales.

Relations have been strained since Lord Carey blocked the appointment of Dr Williams as Bishop of Southwark because he believed that he was too liberal on the gay issue.

Lord Carey’s lecture, one of four he was due to deliver in Wales, had been organised by the Church Mission Society. John Martin, of the society, said about the Dean: “He felt George had become a factor of disunity and of disloyalty to Rowan Williams, a divisive force. He also questioned whether inviting George Carey to speak was a sign that the society was lurching to the right. We pointed out that in fact we have had a very balanced series of lecturers.”

Cathedral deans have the power to refuse entry to anyone, including their own diocesan bishop, but it is extremely rare for a dean to invoke this power. The ban is even more extraordinary given that, in his retirement, Lord Carey is an assistant bishop in South Wales.

read it all

Andrew Carey has written a blog entry here.
Ruth Gledhill blogs on this story here.

Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori’s webpages and priorities.

November 2nd, 2006 posted by admin at 5:18 pm

An official website for Katharine Jefferts Schori has been set up. Here’s the link:

The most interesting information on the site is a short memo (Oct 23, 2006) under the “Spreading the Word” section, about +Schori’s priorties as PB. (Simon Sarmiento gets the hattip for finding this.)

“What do you consider the most important priorities for the Presiding Bishop?”

The Presiding Bishop keeps us focused on the Reign of God, through unceasing attention to mission in the context of baptismal ministry. Christians and their communities are meant to be transformative elements in this world, laboring to create something much more like God’s Reign. The church’s work is to recognize where we have not yet attained God’s dream, speak gospel to that reality, and equip and empower all the baptized to do the work of transforming those places of not-yet. There are two obvious foci for our ministry: moving our sanctuaries into the streets to encounter and transform the bad news of this world; and implementing the Millennium Development Goals, which provide a signal opportunity in this age to realize the dream of God for all creation.

This church must embrace and celebrate all the diverse cultures, languages, and origins of the many parts of the Episcopal Church – Haiti, Taiwan, Province IX, the Churches in Europe, Virgin Islands, as well as the many cultures within the U.S. – First Nations, African-American, Spanishspeaking, Asian, and all Anglo varieties. None is more important than another; all are essential to the transforming work of the Body of Christ.

Ultimately, the Presiding Bishop’s role is one of bridge-building and boundary crossing. If we are to reconcile the world, we must be bold enough to enter unfamiliar territory and partner wherever necessary to build toward the Reign of God. The Body is strengthened as all parts are honored, whatever their color or language, or liturgical, theological, or political stripe. God is to be found in that wilderness of difference, and reconciliation requires the crossing.

New Zealand Anglicans Divide over Gay Ordination

November 2nd, 2006 posted by kendall at 3:40 pm

Source: Anglican Mainstream

Leading Anglicans said today that the ordination of a ‘practising homosexual’ in Dunedin this Saturday could split the Church in New Zealand and the Anglican Communion.

The Latimer Fellowship and Anglican Mainstream NZ have written a letter to the three Archbishops of the New Zealand Church appealing to them to stop or postpone the ordination of a man who is understood to be in an 18-year same-sex relationship. The Bishop of Dunedin, the Rt Revd George Connor, has announced his intention to ordain him in Dunedin on Saturday 4th November.

The Latimer spokesperson, the Revd Malcolm Falloon, said “Archbishop David Moxon recently called for up to seven years of careful listening and conversation. The Bishop of Dunedin appears to have given him less than seven weeks!”

“We believe that this ordination should be at least postponed until after proper consultation and debate has been conducted on what is certainly a deeply divisive issue,” said the Revd Max Scott, Chairman of Anglican Mainstream NZ and Vicar of a parish in the Auckland Diocese.

Read the constitutional basis for objections here

The view expressed in the letter was that, if this ordination proceeds, it would not only breach the Constitution and Canons of the Church but fly in the face of the calls for restraint on this issue from the wider Communion and the Archbishop of Canterbury.

In a separate letter the Vicar’s of New Zealand’s 10 largest Anglican Churches have also expressed their own protest at the proposed ordination.

As yet, the Archbishops and the house of Bishops have been unable to give a clear response to the letters, though Latimer and Mainstream were assured that on-going discussions are being held with the Dunedin Bishop.

The background to this controversy is a series of moves by Anglicans in America and Canada to act unilaterally on same-sex blessings and the ordination of candidates in same-sex relationships, despite repeated warnings from the rest of the Anglican Communion that this could lead to a split. Similar unilateral actions by New Zealand Bishops will only heighten this crisis.

Due to the inadequate response from the New Zealand Bishops, the Latimer Fellowship and Mainstream have been compelled to write to the Archbishop of Canterbury and other bishops throughout the Anglican Communion requesting their assistance.

“We want them to know that the actions of one bishop in New Zealand do not have the support or agreement of all the New Zealand Anglican Church” said Rosemary Behan, an Anglican laywoman in the Christchurch Diocese and a member of the Latimer Fellowship. “We are requesting the Archbishop of Canterbury’s help and intervention so that the Anglican Church in New Zealand do not offend their brothers and sisters in Christ, throughout the world.” she said.


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