Saturday, March 17, 2007

Politics and the episcopacy

Big news yesterday (or the day before) is that due to procedural errors The Very Rev. Mark Lawrence will not be consecrated Bp. in The Diocese of So. Carolina as scheduled. Another election is to be held; and if South Carolinians are anything like Texans, Fr. Mark will be elected yet again and thereafter I presume The Diocese will be very careful in securing consent in a timely and fully proper fashion.

So, what will all this have accomplished? Only a delay in consecration. And the left will be even more "pissed" towards the right and the right will be even more "pissed" towards the left and the National Church.

And the winner will be?
We're all losers for the politics of it.

There is currently a malignancy in The Episcopal Church and it's eating us alive. The sooner we recognize its existence, begin working to treat the disease and quit arguing about its symptoms the better chance our beloved patient has of survival.

I'm sure I don't know how to treat the issues we face, but if our leadership doesn't actively recognize and work to resolve our differences, there is no hope!

Pray daily that within our National Church and our entire Communion, cooler heads can prevail and we can reach consensus without schism.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Beware of the Ides of March

Am reminded that today is March the 15th., the day of my Father's birth. He was born in 1916 and were he alive today he would be 91 years of age. The date was always easy to remember as it was the Ides of March.

Shakespeare's line tells us to look toward March 15th with foreboding and in my relationship with him that certainly was the case. And not just with regards to his birthday, mind you; our bond was tumultuous at best. But, with that being said, I feel we made peace with each other a few years before he died in his mid 80's. None the less, what a waste of a lifetime of relationship.

Was reading RLP today and he had a poignant comment about his oldest child (a daughter) leaving home for good. I was struck by the number of comments regarding children growing up and spreading their wings. I really didn't know how to respond to that posting, I'm usually not at a loss for words. But, in this case it's difficult because the relationship was such there was not much to miss. Such a shame.

Anyway Daddy, if you're out there reading somewhere,

Happy Birthday.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Polarization will destroy our Communion

The following is from the Daily Hampshire Gazette. I offer it with comment that actions such as these will do nothing but entrench the right and inflame the centrists. In the name of "social justice" one fringe is massing their troops, arming themselves with righteousness and going to battle over something better achieved by other means. Yet again we see Priests in God's holy, catholic and apostolic Church ignoring their Ordination Vows by refusing to offer God's ordained Sacrament based solely on their own arbitrary decisions, God's intentions not withstanding. This strikes me as much akin to the incident where "Southern" Bishops refused to receive Communion with Bp. Jefferts Schori at Tanzania. Christian charity surrounding this issue, from both sides, has become non-existent.

Change will come only with understanding, and not be hastened by force. If GLBT's simply compel their way onto "full acceptance" (i.e. with rights to all Sacraments including Holy Matrimony & the Episcopacy) they will have achieved only legislated acceptance with neither respect, understanding nor true equality.

I have long believed that we are called only to love God and one another. When we continue to love each other political issues will become moot. And it then becomes by example in word and deed, that Christ is seen and known.

"And they'll know we are Christians by our love, ..."

Yeah, right... as long as it fits my agenda.

Minister protests same-sex union ban with a halt to all weddings
March 12, 2007

AMHERST, Mass. --An Episcopal minister will stop performing all wedding ceremonies to protest the denomination's prohibition of same-sex unions.

"We are called to join the fast that our homosexual brothers and sisters in Christ have had to observe all their lives," said the Rev. Robert Hirschfeld, rector of Grace Episcopal Church.

Several members of the congregation say they support Hirschfeld's move, which he announced in his Sunday sermon. Others said they were concerned that that the move might add to the polarization of an issue that has already divided Episcopals.

Erica Winter, of Northampton, said working for social justice often involves giving up something.

"I'm so proud to be a part of this," Nina Scott, a congregant from Amherst, said. "It's a step that needs to be taken."

Two priest associates at Grace Church, the Rev. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas and the Rev. Burton Whiteside, also said they won't perform marriages.

"I am convinced that when gays and lesbians are baptized, they become full members of the body of Christ," said Bullitt-Jonas. "They are not partial members or conditional members or second-class members."

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


A blog I read posed the question: "In light of the telecast on the Jesus Family Tomb, a question rises as to whether a non-physical resurrection would effect your faith." I felt compelled to answer and herewith follows my reply.

Have not seen the Discovery telecast of the "Jesus Family Tomb"; however, as with most things, I do have an opinion.

Yes, it would have a definite effect on my faith. As a Christian I believe and accept the words of the Nicene Creed "I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ ... only Son of God ... begotten not made ... of one substance with the Father ... was incarnate by the power of the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary ... was crucified for us ... suffered and was buried, and the third day he arose again according to the Scriptures, and ascended into Heaven ..."

My issue is one whereby if I cannot accept Christ as God come down to redeem His Creation through His death and Resurrection, then I begin to approach Christ as a Prophet, not a part of the Triune Godhead; but something more akin to the Islamic faith and Mohammed’s position. If Christ had not been raised, then I think I would look to the Jewish faith for sustenance, for it is in the Resurrection that God fully manifests His power and dominion. When it becomes that Christ loses His Divinity, he becomes that prophet who is worthy to read and to learn from His teachings rather than God Incarnate.

But at heart I’m monotheistic and then cannot equate the man (less His Divinity) with a part of the Trinity. As an Episcopalian and Anglican, I’m taught that we accept those pronouncements emanating from the Great Church Councils united as absolute truth while all else is open to understanding. They ultimately pronounced the bodily Resurrection true so I’ll stand with 1200 years of learning following 800 years of debate. Paul puts it most succinctly in his Letter to the Church at Corinth:

If there is no resurrection from the dead, then Christ has not been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain and your faith has been in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified of God that He raised Christ – whom He did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised. If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. I Corinthians 15:13-17