Monday, June 12, 2006

Episcopal Church General Convention - And a Live Blogger

I am a Lutheran. Why am I writing about the Episcopalian Church? Because we are all brothers and sisters in Christ, for one reason. Because the Lutheran Church and the Episcopalian Church have formed a formal relationship together and our pastors and priests can serve at each other's churches, even though our theology has certain differences. And because they are grappling with an issue that I believe is important.

Three years ago, at their last General Convention, they approved the election as Bishop of New Hampshire the man who had been elected there -- Gene Robinson....a man who happens to be living in a stable, committed gay relationship.

Over the past three years, world wide "issues" have been raised -- with some Bishops in some countries or diocese thinking that this is wrong, others believing it is right. I support those who believe it is right. Some want to leave, some want to stay, some want to kick out the liberals. Foreign bishops from Africa want to have increased authority. There are fairly well substantiated rumors that outside, non-church, radical right funding is going into the conservative effort -- BIG money. I cannot hope to do justice to the whole scene.

The best and worst of who we are as people has come forward here -- from moments of honest dialogue to epithets of conservatives calling liberals apostate heretical revisionists who want to destroy everything of value in the world -- to liberals calling conservatives rednecked power-hungry homophobic militia who would happily throw all gays out of the church.

It has been tragic -- and a symptom of the larger polarization between "sides" happening all over America, all over the world.

The issues are so complex, that it has taken years of blogging for dedicated bloggers within the ECUSA to even begin to sort it out -- my thumbnail is to give an initial glimpse to those who may not have heard of this strife.

Well, this is the week for the General Conference that may result in Schism. Whatever happens here is sure to be of historic proportions. Sadly, it is like watching Solomon to see if he will cut the baby in twain.

I will be reading the blog of
Father Jake who will be blogging from the GC live. Please check in with him. Send him and the ECUSA your prayers. This is going to be a very tough week.


Blogger samtzmom said...

Thanks and bless you for your loving prayers... I've linked to this beautiful entry on my blog today. We shall pray and pray.... thy will be done.

6:57 AM  
Blogger Visual-Voice said...

Found your post via Journey Through Grace. It is my hope and prayer the episcopal church, all churches, would realize it is more important to love one another than condemn. Accepting ourselves and each other without harsh judgement ~ this is how we take up our crosses and follow him.

12:05 PM  
Blogger Paul J. Lebens-Englund said...

Glad to see your interest in GC and your passion for the tough issues we're tackling together. Know that things are never as contentious or clear-cut as they appear in the news. Contrary to what some believe, the consecration of Bp. Robinson and the ensuing "conversation" has been received by most of us as a gift -- even if a rather unwelcome gift to some. It has given us a new and unique occasion to ask ourselves some very fundamental questions about the nature and purpose of the Church. God's loving providence is in this -- for those for whom this is all a no brainer, and for those for whom this has caused profound confusion and anger. All will be well.

12:57 AM  

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