Daily Archives: July 12, 2012

New Text of Communion Without Baptism Resolution [C029] as Amended and Sent Back to HoD

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.

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

South Carolina Differentiates Itself from Actions of 77th General Convention

[This post will was originally ‘sticky’ at the head of the blog – new posts were below sticky posts – see also the index].

It was with significant prayer and reflection that the Bishop of South Carolina, the Rt. Rev. Mark J. Lawrence, and the South Carolina deputation to the 77th General Convention took steps to differentiate themselves from actions taken by the convention which, in the words of Bishop Lawrence “mark a departure from the doctrine, discipline and worship of Christ as this Church has received them.”

On the morning of July 11, 2012, five of South Carolina’s seven deputies did not return to the house floor. Bishop Lawrence, after addressing the House of Bishops in a private session, also left the convention.
The full deputation released a statement, July 10, 2012, which said:

“Due to the actions of General Convention, the South Carolina Deputation has concluded that we cannot continue with business as usual. We all agree that we cannot and will not remain on the floor of the House and act as if all is normal. John Burwell and Lonnie Hamilton have agreed to remain at Convention to monitor further developments and by their presence demonstrate that our action is not to be construed as a departure from the Episcopal Church. Please pray for those of us who will be traveling early and for those who remain.”

Those who did not return to the house of deputies were the Rev. Canon Jim Lewis, the Very Rev. David Thurlow, Elizabeth “Boo” Pennewill, Lydia Evans, and Reid Boylston.

Bishop Lawrence stated that the departure of the deputies should not be understood as a departure from the Episcopal Church. “Frankly, a deputation to General Convention has no authority to make such a decision.”

Bishop Lawrence, in a private session of the House of Bishops on July 11, requested and received a point of personal privilege. During this time he expressed things for which he was grateful during this convention, the “intentional engagement in honesty and collegiality with fellow bishops.” He also expressed his “grievous concern” with changes to the canons through resolutions D002 and D019, which have to do with transgender identity and expression, as well as with resolution A049, which authorized a provisional rite for the Blessing of Same-Sex Unions.

“These resolutions in my opinion,” said Lawrence, “are disconcerting changes to the doctrine, discipline and worship of the Episcopal Church–to which every bishop, priest and deacon is asked to conform. More importantly they mark a departure from the doctrine, discipline and worship of Christ as this Church has received them, therein making it necessary for me to strongly differentiate myself from such actions.“

At the conclusion of this private session Lawrence told the House of Bishops that he would not be continuing in the remainder of the Convention.

“I concur with the assessment of our canon theologian, the Rev. Dr. Kendall Harmon, when he described the actions of this General Convention as ”˜unbiblical, unchristian, unanglican and unseemly,’” said Lawrence.

Bishop Lawrence will be sending a statement to diocesan clergy, which is to be read in parishes on Sunday, July 15, 2012.

“Our deputation and I appreciate the prayers of so many in the Diocese of South Carolina,” said Lawrence. “I know that some did not think we should attend the 77th General Convention, but I believe our presence and witness was important and even respected by many on both sides of the theological divide. As St. Paul states regarding his ministry, ”˜”¦we refuse to practice cunning or to falsify God’s word; but by the open statement of the truth we commend ourselves to the conscience of everyone in the sight of God.’“ (2 Corinthians 4:2)

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

Christian and Muslim alliance commits to help solving tensions in Nigeria

The World Council of Churches (WCC) and the Royal Aal Al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought (RABIIT) on 12 July issued a report on their joint commitment to help in resolving the tensions in Nigeria. The report reflects a new Christian-Muslim model of cooperation for peace between religions and further interfaith dialogue.

The report follows the high level inter-religious delegation’s visit to Abuja, Jos and Kaduna, Nigeria, from 22 to 26 May. The visit and report are a response to the inter-communal strife between Christian and Muslims in the country. Last week, around a hundred people lost their lives in the Plateau state alone as a result of the clashes.

“Religion should never be used as a pretext for conflict. We are committed to the situation in Nigeria. We are concerned and anxious for the lives that are lost in the name of religion in Nigeria,” said Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, general secretary of the WCC.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * International News & Commentary, * Religion News & Commentary, Africa, Islam, Law & Legal Issues, Muslim-Christian relations, Nigeria, Other Faiths, Police/Fire, Politics in General, Religion & Culture, Terrorism, Violence

Center Aisle for Today–A Look Back at Eight Days in Indy at General Convention 2012

You can find the links for it there.

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

Some Pastoral Care for Kendall in His Office

Posted in * By Kendall, * General Interest, Animals, Harmon Family

Episcopal Church passes same-sex blessings, Houston area church to offer new rite

The diocese announced in April that if approved, St. Stephen’s in Montrose and another church in Austin would be the first in the area to offer the blessings, as early as December of this year.

St. Stephen’s Facebook page announced the news of the blessings’ approval with exclamation-laden posts. Parishioner Carvel Glen attended the convention and will share his experience with the congregation in between services on Sunday.

The liturgy is designed to affirm covenant relationships between gay and lesbian couples, and many advocates of GLBT rights within the church see it as a precursor to same-sex marriages.

Read it all.

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

(ENS) Concurring with Deputies, House of Bishops unanimously approves structure plan

Applause and cheers erupted July 11 as Resolution C095, which calls for creation of a task force to re-imagine the workings of the Episcopal Church in the 21st century, sailed unanimously through the House of Bishops.

Read it all.

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

(ENS) House of Deputies approve new task force to reimagine church structure

Read it all.

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

(Arkansas) Lowell Grisham offers Thoughts about Yesterday at Gen Con. 2012

There was a lot of passionate testimony at the hearing — both pro and con — about the ESV. It is a Bible with a strong evangelical flavor — a bishop said it was the successor of the Geneva Bible, strongly reformed, somewhat Calvinist. But much of the material that many find particularly offensive or of questionable scholarship is in the annotations and commentary rather than the translation itself, which is what we are considering. One person said the translation was a project that James Dobson of “Focus on the Family” had a large hand in. Many evangelical Episcopalians very strongly prefer the ESV. We already have translations that use similar phrases and English words for some of the “clobber passages,” as the verses are sometimes called that are used to defend interpretations that define gay intimacy as essentially sinful.

Our committee chose to refer the resolution to the Standing Commission for Liturgy and Music, since this translation was not part of their earlier study, and to ask them to make a report back to the next General Convention. Since the recommendation for the ESV came from the floor of this Convention, some felt they didn’t have the time and resources to evaluate it. We hope to adopt the Common English Bible (2001). I imagine this will provoke a floor fight.

Read it all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, --Gen. Con. 2012, Episcopal Church (TEC), General Convention, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(LA Times) Rising costs push California cities to fiscal brink

Facing the same financial stressors that pushed San Bernardino toward bankruptcy, cities across California are slashing day-to-day services and taking other drastic actions to skirt a similar fiscal collapse.

For some, it may not be enough.

San Bernardino on Tuesday became the third California city to seek bankruptcy protection in the last month and, while no one expects the state to be consumed by municipal insolvencies, other cities teeter on the abyss.

Read it all.

Posted in * Economics, Politics, City Government, Consumer/consumer spending, Corporations/Corporate Life, Economy, Housing/Real Estate Market, Labor/Labor Unions/Labor Market, Politics in General, Taxes, The Banking System/Sector, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

(KQED) What the Episcopal Same-Sex Union and Transgender Resolutions Mean for Californians

JAY JOHNSON: We’re going to be testing this liturgy for the blessing of same gender unions over the next three years leading up to the next general convention in 2015 when further actions will be decided upon then. So now that both houses of convention have approved it, both House of Bishops and House of Deputies, it can be used late this fall.

STEPHANIE MARTIN: Haven’t there been blessings like this in Episcopal congregations in the past?

JAY JOHNSON: There have been blessing ceremonies, liturgies and rituals in congregations and in some dioceses in the Episcopal Church for a good number of years. What is significant about this is that it’s the national church as a whole that has approved the use of it. It’s the first major Protestant denomination that has officially recognized liturgical rights to do this for same-gender couples.

Read it all.

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

Todd Wetzel's Anglicans United Report on the House of Bishops debate on Same Sex Blessings

Discussion included a statement by Bishop Greg Brewer, Central Florida, in which he pointed out that, in areas of the world with dominant Moslem majorities, Christians would be killed because they adhere to a Faith, which supports any inclusion of homosexuality or lesbianism. Because of the reception of satellite TV with programs from the United States, countries in Africa ”“ especially the Islamic majorities ”“ constantly battle against the adoption of homosexuality into their cultures.

The House barely hesitated at his remark. I think this is result two-fold. In 2008, most of the African provinces declined to attend the Lambeth Conference in Canterbury, England. As a result, the TEC bishops that did attend did not have the opportunity to meet them and hear their stories. They did meet and hear from bishops in India, Pakistan, Indonesia, and New Guinea where Christianity is less than 2% of the population. In these countries, homosexuality is taboo also, but the reaction is not as violent as in Africa. So, how much does this issue matter across the Communion?

In a vote on Tuesday, the House of Deputies concurred by passing the measure with an even wider margin.

Read it all.

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

(York Daily Record) Local pastors respond to Episcopal church approving same-sex unions

At St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church of York, the Rev. David Robson said he will call a parish meeting in the coming months to gather thoughts and opinions. The vestry board will make the final decision on how St. Andrew’s will proceed, he added.

“What we’ll do in our congregation is have a respectful conversation about it,” he said. “I don’t know if anyone will want to come in and say, ‘We want our relationship blessed.'”

Read it all.

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

A Prayer to Begin the Day

Lord, increase our faith; that relying on thee as thy children, we may trust where we cannot see, and hope where all seems doubtful, ever looking unto thee as our Father who ordereth all things well; according to the word of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Bible Readings

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David the servant of the LORD, who addressed the words of this song to the LORD on the day when the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. He said: I love thee, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies.

–Psalm 18:1-3

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture