Daily Archives: July 10, 2012

The Rev. Gay Clark Jennings Elected President of House of Deputies

Her remarks in response follow: (ENS)

I am honored to have been chosen by my colleagues in the House of Deputies as their next president, and I’m grateful to all of the people across the church””deputies, bishops, and many other leaders””who have expressed their confidence in me and shared their ideas. I’m especially grateful to Deputy Martha Alexander and Deputy Frank Logue for offering their gifts to the church, and I look forward to working with them during the next triennium.

I am a priest, ordained in 1979, born and raised and ordained in the Diocese of Central New York, and an eight-time deputy from the Diocese of Ohio. I stood for election as president of the House of Deputies because I believe that God is calling me to work with leaders across the church to change the way we do business in the next triennium. For the Episcopal Church to matter in the 21st century, we have to find ways to move forward together.

As president of the House of Deputies, I intend to foster the leadership of young people, people of color, and others who have not always been at the table. I have strong relationships with many bishops, and I look forward to working with the House of Bishops for wholeness, reconciliation and justice that will benefit the entire Episcopal Church.

The Church longs to be transfigured ”“ changed into the likeness of Jesus ”“ from glory to glory. That’s my vision for the Episcopal Church, and I look forward to working with the House of Deputies, the House of Bishops, and Episcopalians across the church to make it come true.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, House of Deputies President, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry

Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court rules to halt the decision by Pres. Morsi to recall parliament

And what happens? Egypt politicians defy supreme court as parliament convenes.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, Egypt, Law & Legal Issues, Middle East, Politics in General

Center Aisle's Article on Yesterday in the HOB–Bishops Approve Resources for Same-Sex Blessings

The bishop suffragan of Texas, the Rt. Rev. Dena A. Harrison, reminded the bishops that “we are indeed members of a worldwide Anglican Communion. The actions that we might take today put our brothers and sisters in a tough position around the world that is literally life and death.”

“We are better able to handle the ambiguity than they are,” she added.

The Rt. Rev. Nathan Baxter, Central Pennsylvania, countered that “we’ve been called to courage, to not be afraid to be a minority.”

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, TEC Bishops

Today's Edition of Centre Aisle for General Convention 2012

Read it all (pdf).

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention

Whats Happening with the Communion of the UnBaptized?

Here is the latest from the committee–amended C029–

Resolved, the House of _______ concurring, That the 77th General Convention direct the Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies to appoint a special commission charged with conducting a study of the theology underlying access to Holy Baptism and Holy Communion in this Church and to recommend for consideration by the 78th General Convention any amendment to Title I, Canon 17, Section 7, of the Canons of General Convention that it deems appropriate; and be it further Resolved, That the General Convention request the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget and Finance to consider a budget allocation of $30,000 for the implementation of this Resolution.
Resolved, the House of Bishops concurring, that The Episcopal Church reaffirms that baptism is the ancient and normative entry point to receiving Holy Communion and that our Lord Jesus Christ calls us to go into the world and baptize all peoples. We also acknowledge that in various local contexts there is the exercise of pastoral sensitivity with those who are not yet baptized.

You can find a copy of it here.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Gen. Con. 2012, Anthropology, Baptism, Episcopal Church (TEC), Eucharist, General Convention, Pastoral Theology, Sacramental Theology, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Western NC) Bishop Porter Taylor offers reflections on Yesterday at GC 2012

The whole day was exhilarating and unpredictable and messy but also holy and good.

The bishops talked about not requiring the Presiding Bishop to resign as a diocesan bishop, but decided to wait to act until we see the Structure piece. Our afternoon focused on a Trial use of a Blessing for same sex couples. It was a holy debate. The measure passed easily. My sense is that we currently have a kind of liturgical anarchy about rites of blessings. Dioceses use all kinds of rites. This will regularize them and enable us as a Church to see if this rite works. It’s a trial use for the Church to gather information.

General Convention is such a strange way to run a Church. My hope is that in our reform we will do much less business but do it well. I think our decisions afford a lot of input but not enough reflection. I know that after a week of being here, I am tired and not able to think as clearly as this work demands.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops

South Carolina Deputies Attending General Convention 2012

You can find them there.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * South Carolina, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention

Living Church on the gender Identity Resolutions Debate in the H of Deputies Yesterday

The House of Deputies passed resolutions protecting church members from discrimination based on “gender identity and expression” in amendments to two non-discrimination canons July 9.

The House spent considerable time discussing Resolution D019, affirming all people’s access to “the life, worship, and governance” of the church, hearing mostly from deputies testifying in support of the resolution.

Proponents of the resolution said it helps define “the Episcopal Church Welcomes You.” Sarah Lawton of California opened discussion, saying that it is important that the Episcopal Church specifically lists gender identity and expression in the canon to welcome the transgender community.

Read it all.

Posted in Uncategorized

Jeffrey Walton–Activists for TEC's New Theology Hail Victories at Episcopal Convention

Following [Gene] Robinson’s sermon, [Mary] Glasspool celebrated communion with several transgender-themed prayers.

“Spirit of Life, we thank you for disordering our boundaries and releasing our desires as we prepare this feast of delight,” the offering prayer began. “Draw us out of hidden places and centers of conformity to feel your laughter and live in your pleasure.”

Read it all and be sure to look at this.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Gen. Con. 2012, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology

Tim Keller–Making Sense of Scripture's Alleged 'Inconsistency'

I find it frustrating when I read or hear columnists, pundits, or journalists dismiss Christians as inconsistent because “they pick and choose which of the rules in the Bible to obey.” Most often I hear, “Christians ignore lots of Old Testament texts—about not eating raw meat or pork or shellfish, not executing people for breaking the Sabbath, not wearing garments woven with two kinds of material and so on. Then they condemn homosexuality. Aren’t you just picking and choosing what you want to believe from the Bible?”

I don’t expect everyone to understand that the whole Bible is about Jesus and God’s plan to redeem his people, but I vainly hope that one day someone will access their common sense (or at least talk to an informed theological adviser) before leveling the charge of inconsistency.

Read it all.

Posted in Ethics / Moral Theology, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Kendall Harmon–Massachusetts Disconnect–Bishop Thomas Shaw During Yesterday's Bishops Debate

“Shaw, MA: Our diocese has had significant growth recently, in thanks to including all people. ”ª#gc77”¬” I was listening and it is certainly an accurate paraphrase, though not an exact quote.

Here are the figures–Massachusetts’ 2007 to 2010 ASA [average Sunday attendance]

20,121
19,351
18,130
17,903

Perhaps there are 2011 figures that show a [small?] increase, but still, there is a large disconnection here–KSH.

Update: You can find some of these statistics here and you can find a great deal more over there.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, - Anglican: Commentary, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, TEC Bishops, TEC Data

Kendall Harmon: About Today and How to Receive the [Same Sex Liturgy] Resolution that will Pass

There have been a number of occasions over the years in TEC like this where a key document or statement has come out, and the response has been, shall we say, less than satisfactory. Therefore there needs to be some preparation on our part so as to try to react in a Christian manner. Herewith some suggestions:

(1) Please try to read the actual text of the resolution itself and concentrate on the language used. I am sorry if this seems obvious but my Mom was an English teacher–you would be amazed at how little it actually occurs. Who are the worst people to do a Bible study with? Seminarians. Why? Because they have the most deep seated ideas of what the text says before they read it. It is vital that the text be heard on its own terms.

(2) Try to draw conclusions yourself FROM THE TEXT before getting your head clouded with what others think. Be aware that some of the early reactions will be wrong.

(3) When you consider others reactions, read from a variety of sources. You should regularly be visiting reappraiser and reasserter sites, writers you agree with and authors who drive you crazy.

(4) Make your early evaluations tentatively. “It seems to be saying that,” “what I hear the statement saying is,” are the kinds of things I would prefer to hear.

(5) Be aware that every statement like this goes through a process of sifting. Give it at least three days. There is an earthquake, there are aftershocks, and then things settle down.

(6) Expect the discernment to be a corporate activity. We still seek to be part of the Church of Jesus Christ, and we need one another. We are. as Ephesians says (4:15), to speak the truth in love. May the way we respond demonstrate this–KSH.

By the way–anyone recognize most of the language here? It is from something I wrote in 2007. Nick Knisely wrote [now Bishop-elect of Rhode Island] at the time that he found himself “pretty much full agreement with [my]suggestions”

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * By Kendall, * Culture-Watch, - Anglican: Commentary, --Civil Unions & Partnerships, --Gen. Con. 2012, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, General Convention, Marriage & Family, Media, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, TEC House of Deputies, TEC Polity & Canons, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Alan Haley Analyzes the Bishops Vote Yesterday, Showing its Violations of their own Governing Rules

So what, exactly, did the Bishops do today (July 9), besides “pass” a piece of paper labeled “Resolution A049”?

Did they amend the Book of Common Prayer?

They did not.

Did they approve an alternative to the BCP for trial use on a Church-wide basis?

They did not””the proponents of A049 knew they did not have the votes to do that.
Instead, at the last minute, they carefully reworded their Resolution to take out the word “trial [use]” wherever it appeared, and put the word “provisional” in its place. In this way, the rudderless Bishops apparently believed they were not opening up a route to amending the Book of Common Prayer, by triggering the requirement of the need for a supermajority under Article X of the Constitution (as discussed in this post).

But did they approve, then, an experimental rite for “special occasions” and for use only with the permission of a bishop, as discussed in this earlier post?

No, they did not manage to do that, either….

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, - Anglican: Analysis, --Book of Common Prayer, --Gen. Con. 2012, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, General Convention, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Polity & Canons, Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Living Church Article on Yesterday's Debate and Vote in the House of Bishops on Same Sex Liturgies

The House of Bishops authorized a provisional rite July 9 for blessing same-sex relationships. The vote was 111 to 41, with three bishops abstaining. Resolution A049 asks General Convention to authorize the liturgy for provisional use, which replaces the word trial.

The resolution, which proceeds to the House of Deputies July 10 for debate and voting, also calls for a review of provisional use before the next General Convention in 2015.

“This is clearly a work in process, and there is a place in that process for all Episcopalians, whether or not they agree with the action we are taking today,” said the Committee on Prayer Book, Liturgy and Church Music’s report accompanying the resolution.

But most people who have spoken publicly about the resolution consider it more than provisional, and say it plainly authorizes same-sex blessings in the Episcopal Church.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, --Gen. Con. 2012, Anthropology, Episcopal Church (TEC), Ethics / Moral Theology, General Convention, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Marriage & Family, Pastoral Theology, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Reuters) Episcopalians set to be first big US church to bless Same-Sex marriage

(We have been over this before many times–the Episcopal Church is set to be the third mainline denomination in North America to do this–the first was the United Church of Christ, and the second was the United Church of Canada–KSH).

The U.S. Episcopal Church is poised to become the first major religious denomination in the United States to approve a rite for blessing gay marriages after its bishops overwhelmingly approved such a liturgy on Monday.

The proposed blessing was agreed by the church’s Chamber of Bishops at a meeting in Indianapolis and is expected to receive final approval from its House of Deputies later this week, Ruth Meyers, a chair of the Episcopalians’ Subcommittee on Prayer Book, Liturgy and Church Music, told Reuters. The decision would go into effect in December and make the Episcopal Church, an independent U.S.-based institution affiliated with global Anglicanism, the biggest U.S. church to allow a liturgy for same-sex marriages. The Episcopal Church is the 14th-largest denomination in the United States with nearly 2 million adherents, according to the National Council of Churches.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)