Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Still Hopeful as I Watch the Dance

In all of my thoughts about being hopeful or even optimistic about the outcomes of Lambeth, that is NOT to say that I think all went well.

It did…but it didn’t.

The idea…the hope of what might have been established was a good one. To talk and to listen…what a concept!

But as has been noted by those much closer to the whole situation, there is one point and one point only that negates anything that was good…Bishop Gene Robinson was ignored…no, not ignored but actively NOT invited. As a result, all that was truly good, all that could have actually happened was prevented by those too fearful of the presence of the Holy Spirit. They were afraid to allow her the dance.

I will not even begin to start on the pros or cons of Archbishop Rowan Williams. There are other blogs that are far more eloquent or erudite or eager or any other e-word with which one might erupt. My thoughts…he is extremely fearful. I would surmise, however, that when one refuses to speak out on behalf o one group of marginalized people for the fear of offending yet another group of people, then that one has a serious ethical dilemma.

Yet…regardless…I am hopeful.

Why am I hopeful? Because of some things I have stated in the past and because of the moratoria called for at Lambeth. What? Yes.

Regarding Moratoria – a period of waiting which deals with three issues:
1) Partnered, gay or lesbian bishops
2) Authorization of same sex blessing RITES – authorized by TEC or by bishops within their own diocese
3) Border crossing

TEC is already under our own self imposed moratorium on electing gay or lesbian bishops who are partnered – remember the odious BO33? So, we have that one covered. Plus one of the bonuses of the Indaba groups was that those bishops who thought of TEC as some wild maverick hell bent on having its own way were not aware of the fact that General Convention ’06 had already accepted a moratorium on both elections of LGBT bishops who are partnered and on authorization of same sex rites.

TEC has not authorized any same sex blessing rites. I don’t know if any bishop within any TEC diocese has authorized any such rites. The point being, this moratorium has nothing to do with blessing same sex unions. Nothing.

Border crossing – well, we all know about that one, don’t we? And we also know that it is not TEC that is doing the trespassing.

Best I can tell, TEC should be rolling in total approval by all who would criticize. We are far more in compliance with the mind of Lambeth than are many others. Including Jack Leo Iker who it is now known gave approval for several of his clergy to present a proposal to the “Holy See” of Rome to explore a partnership between Rome and the EPISCOPAL Diocese of Fort Worth. See Katie’s blog to read all about it.

You know, I just don’t understand this – how can this be seen as anything at all other than a HUGE attempt to grab up property? As if the Roman Catholic Church will be anything but welcoming as Fort Worth attempts to steal all the property built up by the Episcopal presence in the Diocese of Fort Worth? Wonder how many of these parishes the Roman Catholic Church will close and sell? Seems to be the current thing in that church – not enough money to hold open sagging numbers so the doors close and the property gets sold. Which parish first? Then who will get the money?

Doesn’t sound too holy to me. Of course, this is just speculation based upon current news reports regarding the Catholic (big C) Church. I am sure that Jack would disagree.

All this just goes to show you that TEC is doing all that it is asked to do by those outside of the Episcopal Church and others are doing everything they can do to sabotage any efforts of reconciliation.

Reconciliation, by the way, does not mean that two groups will get back together again. It only means that attempts to work out differences will be considered and transgressions (or trespasses) forgiven and then the two groups may walk separately for a time or forever.

Schism scars last forever in the history of the Church. Yet all in all, I still see the Holy Spirit dancing in and out of it all. So, yes, I am still hopeful, even in this last folly of Jack's. In his way, he is helping to speed up reconciliation. So, once again, I am thankful to him.

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