An Editorial comment - Why the TEC House of Bishop’s Statement will not ‘mend the torn fabric”

27 September 2007 - Print Version

News & Views

The addition of “(1) The House acknowledges that non-celibate gay and lesbian persons are included among those to whom B033 pertains” may be read as a significant change or clarification to B033 but it is not. It is a worthless “sequitur” statement which don’t add anything. After all, we know that B033 pertains to anyone, including ‘non-celibate gay and lesbian persons.” It does not affect the intent of B033 which avoids responding to the specific Windsor language of regret/repentance or Dar es salem’s request for clarification in this regard. (read also Bishop Stanton’s observations on this)  B033 should be reworded to address specifically what caused the tear in the first place and make specific mention that they will not consecrate again such persons.  But we all know that this is not possible from the HOB. Nothing changes in this direction. What has been consistently coming across is “Yes, we know it is very painful for you. It is also for us. But we cannot and will not change.” But pity alone is not enough to heal this kind of tear.

The lack of understanding of how the 2003 act has caused grief (breaking trust) to the Communion and genuine repentance from this act also explains their request for Gene Robinsons to be included in Lambeth 2008 and a lack of sympathy for the pastoral intrusions, which were initiated based on requests from their own ranks.  It is time that Communion leaders respond to orthodox Anglicans and not marginalized them due to polity reasons and I cannot see how conservative GS Primates will abandon them, which will be a deep pastoral error.

Given the pain the Communion has experienced, a repeated call for active listening process, though Windsor-compliant, is foolhardy as it will tear dioceses and Provinces apart (thus Church of England Synod’s refusal to table the issue), let alone Lambeth Conference. I don’t disagree with the need. But time needs to be given for the tear to heal and it is pastoral and leadership madness to deal with this divisive issues after all the pain it has caused and will cause if it remains in the forefront of how the Communion relate together.  TEC HOB’s requests for this underlines their determination to ‘converse to convert’ and remain actively in the communion processes to convince the rest of then world that their actions are right and ‘prophetic.’ It is a bizarre reaction to the crisis they have caused.

The fabric remain as torn as it did in 2003. Unless some HOB bishops has the leadership guts to lead TEC out of her current direction, fudging the issues will only continue the pain and division in the Communion. It is best that those who are determine to pursue the 2003 action indicate clearly their desire to ‘walk apart’ so that the rest of the Communion can move on with her life and core business. Perhaps the Covenant can do the work to mend the net and for TEC to return via that channel. This will truly ‘save the Communion’, a phrase that has been bandid around but it is obvious that most seem concern to ‘save TEC’ and help her keep her status as an official member of the Communion. 

12 Responses. Comments closed for this entry.

  1. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Step into the mind of a Socialist-Marxism in TEC

    2. vulcanhammer wrote:

    “We ... pledge not to authorize for use in our dioceses any public rites of same-sex blessings until a broader consensus emerges in the Communion.” “Until” is an expression of historical determinism, an inheritance from Marxism.  It is the idea that history is going their way and that reasserters (either within or outside the US) cannot stop it.  This is a very common on the left.

    But, in politics and economics, Marx had his doubts about the results.  At one time Marx got into a conversation with the wife of the publisher of Das Kapital in Germany about who would do the chores in Marx’s “new world.” It started light heartedly but turned serious, at which point the woman said, “I cannot picture you in an egalitarian period since your inclinations and habits are thoroughly aristocratic.”

    “Neither can I,” Marx replied, “those times must come but we must be gone by then.”

  2. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    ADF attorney: Federal appeals court rejects demand of “transsexuals” for special rights:

    God, save us from this madness.

  3. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Marine General Speaks Out:

  4. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Church accepts sexual perversions, now abortion-what next:

    I suppose like Ron Smith states-we are just too unenlightened and bigoted.

  5. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    The impotence pandemic-pornography, when pornography replaces your spouse:

  6. EPfizH Says:

    please notice the change in verbiage here Windsor asks the Amricans to express “regret” for what tbey had done.  They did.  Here, as in all GS documents about the issue, the word “regret” is changed to “repentance.”  When asked last week what “repentance” means in regard to the tear in the fabric if the communion, +Akinola responded: “They must undo what they have done”  i.e. remove Gene Robinson.  As the Americans have tried to comply, the GS has keot moving tbe line, upping the ante, from Windsor, to “Tne Road
    to Lambeth” and now “Undo what yoh have done”  while watching the GS offer “cover” to breakaway groups in America, concecrating bishops, elected by no one, nominated by themselves to serve in a competing parallel church.

  7. seoulsurvivor Says:

    In answer to EPfizH, I think the distinction between expressing regret for doing something, which is what Windsor asked for, differs from expressing regret for hurt caused by what has been done. I am currently in Korea. Koreans remain sceptical of all apologies by Japan about WWII because the apology is always in terms of regret that so many died in the war, not least in Japan, rather than acknowledging that Japan did anything wrong. Windsor calls for something much closer to repentance than the expressions of regret that have been issued by TEC. The implication of TEC expressions of regret is that they do not think they have done anything wrong. Windsor reuires them to say they have. Call that repentance or whatever, but TEC is not complying. Whether they should, is a separate matter.

  8. JB Silvey Says:

    The churches in the USA have suffered much at the hands of many TEC clergy.  They have trodden under foot the Son of God and have counted the blood of the covenant as an unholy thing and have despised the spirit of grace.  They are godless men and women who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny the only Lord God. They scoff at the orthodox and celebrate those who follow their ungodly desires.

  9. Chris Tyack Says:

    You people in the “global south” should go to any textbook in psychology or medicine, scan for ‘homosexuality,’ and see that it is a basic disposition, akin to left-handedness.  It is not ‘cureable’.

    Everyone must be allowed the opportunity for love and personal integration.  It is really a question of human rights.

  10. Gary Morrow, Dahlonega, Georgia. USA Says:

    Brief representing thousands of ethnic churches filed in support of marriage in California marriage cases:

  11. Chris Cairns Says:

    Chris Tyack:

    Go to any translation of the Bible, and you will find prohibitions on homosexual practice in both the Old and New Testaments.

    You have underlined the problem: we have different sources of authority.

    I would be careful, Chris, in referring to the Global South as “you people.”  Someone might get confused about your bigoted way of opposing what you consider to be bigotry….

  12. weiwentg Says:

    Chris Cairns is right. the Global South includes archbishops like Ndungane and Tutu. “You people” is too broad a brush.

    it seems that those two, after suffering through apartheid, have a certain sensitivity to oppression. I don’t think they agree 100% with what the Episcopal Church has done, but they are certainly sensitive to the needs of LGBT people. more so than the people here, who claim - falsely? - to represent all Anglicans in the Global South. (they certainly don’t represent me, I was born in Singapore but was confirmed in TEC.)

    it seems that the alleged leaders of Global South Anglicans are just as stubborn as they think TEC is. Primates like Akinola are convinced that they are right in persecuting LGBT people, that there is no need to listen to them. they are determined to convert the Episcopal Church, to make us conform to their interpretation of Scriptures. well, in Mark 2:27, Jesus says “the Sabbath was made for Man, not Man for the Sabbath.” if a religious law - and yes, Akinola is living under the law, not grace - conflicts with a human need, I think Jesus is saying the law needs to be reevaluated and reinterpreted.

    PS, this has been said many times on Episcopal blogs, and I’m sick of hearing it. but it needs to be pointed out to the author that the House of Bishops does not have authority to unilaterally change the direction of the church. TEC operates like a democracy with a bicameral legislature; any resolutions at General Convention must be passed by the houses of deputies and bishops to be in force. if the bishops were somehow willing to lead the church in the way that the author suggests (and almost all are not), the laypeople would have none of it.