The Episcopal Church’s Decision
For many of us who have genuine affection for Anglicanism in general the decision of the General Convention, which typical of Episcopalians, gives a way out for those who disagree with that decision, there is an almost pathological need in the Episcopal Church to try and be all things to all people and in so doing I fear end up being nothing to everybody. For many former Episcopalians who are both socially and political Progressives and are so precisely becuase of the Gospel and the Creeds not to mentioned Patristic Tradition, the drift towards a “Unitarianism in vestments” has been the cause of separation not the blessing of same gender relationships or the election of gay bishops nor the inclusion of transgendered persons as clergy! For former Anglicans such as these it is the lack of any definitive “core doctrine” that leads to the separation. I remember the comment of a RC religious sister upon hearing the American Episcopal Presiding Bishop refusing to accept the unique divinity of Christ(!)in a television interview. Said the sister “she has just set our cause (the ordination of women in the Roman Catholic Church)back a hundred years”!
The decline somewhat dramatically in the Episcopal Church, which is not echoed in Africa and Asia or even Latin America, is both a reflection of the growing sense of irrelevancy of religion amongst a consumer driven money worshiping population and the inability to teach and preach with moral authority and credibility. You cannot on the one hand say “we believe” and on the other proclaim “we do not believe” and call it diversity.
Add to this the spectacle of the Presiding Bishop and her “curia” going after the rebellious dioceses and parishes with an almost vengeful determination becuase of property which translated means MONEY and LOTS of IT and you do not have a good “brand” to promote.
The Episcopal Church which has some of the most Christian folke in Christendom, perhaps not becuase of but despite her battles must answer once and for all the question Jesus posed to his disciples “Who do YOU say I am”!
If it proclaims that Jesus is the Son of God and that all are welcome and valued and wherever love is present there is God then whether as a denomination it is small or large makes no difference. What makes a difference is witness and witness that says in all humility this we must do and can do no other so help us God!
For those like myself who believe on the authority of the Lord Jesus that GLBT folke are fully members of the Chruch which He founded and that marriage is a union of two loving committed people regardless of the gender of the couple,and that in Christ Jesus there is neither male or female gay or straight we urge the Episcopal Chruch to proclaim the Good News without apology or reservation and to do so because it is the Gospel not just social justice and anthropological progress!
Bishop Andrew Gerales Gentry
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