…I have my eye on the meeting continuing on in Canterbury, with Anglican heterodox and orthodox bishops meeting to try to avert the imminent crisis of a world wide split. It was reported yesterday that Canterbury tried to employ the Delphi Technique, that clever business of getting everyone divided up into small groups and not letting them talk altogether. Each small group is managed by a facilitator who reports up the line what the group has said. “Consensus” and “Agreement” are achieved through a carefully managed and crafted process and nothing frank or honest is ever reported to have been said. Also, they, the primates, had to all turn in their cell phones.
Being the pessimist I am, I muttered, “of course” when I read this. But, then, in the depths of my soul, I discovered a kernel of something I haven’t faced for a long time, grief.
Because, it turns out, though I hadn’t been willing to look at it, and I wouldn’t have been able to face it even if I could, I also had been harboring hope. Not a single person who walked away from the episcopal church, unlike Lot’s wife, did so without much agony and looking back. It’s not that we were unsure, or confused, it’s that we were sorrowful, grieved. Because the episcopal church had been a place of nourishment and beauty. It is a church full of lovely things to look at, beautiful music, and interesting people who are, as I like to say, God Curious.
But, well, the leaders of that church, Michael Curry more brilliantly than anyone, have mixed just enough truth with just enough error to wreck everything. If you really want to know God on his own terms, not shaped and molded by the dubious sensibilities of the age, you won’t be able to stay there. You have to get into a church space where the Word of God is unfolded completely