Statement from West Texas Bishops on the election this past weekend in the Diocese of Los Angeles

From here:

As you may be aware, on Saturday, December 5, the Diocese of Los Angeles elected the Rev. Mary D. Glasspool, a partnered lesbian, as one of two bishops suffragan elected in that diocese over the weekend. This election, like all elections to the episcopate, must receive a majority of consents from bishops exercising jurisdiction (that is, diocesan bishops) as well as diocesan Standing Committees of the Episcopal Church within 120 days of the election. In response to this election, the Archbishop of Canterbury released the following statement on December 6: “The election of Mary Glasspool by the Diocese of Los Angeles as suffragan bishop elect raises very serious questions not just for the Episcopal Church and its place in the Anglican Communion, but for the Communion as a whole. The process of selection however is only part complete. The election has to be confirmed, or could be rejected, by diocesan bishops and diocesan standing committees. That decision will have very important implications. The bishops of the Communion have collectively acknowledged that a period of gracious restraint in respect of actions which are contrary to the mind of the Communion is necessary if our bonds of mutual affection are to hold.”

Previously, the 75th General Convention of the Episcopal Church meeting in Columbus, Ohio, in June 2006, passed resolution B033 that called “upon the Standing Committees and bishops with jurisdiction to exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on the communion.” There was much conversation at this year’s 76th General Convention in Anaheim about whether the actions of the 2009 Convention had repealed B033. We are mindful of the statement of this summer’s General Convention that acknowledged that “members of The Episcopal Church, as of the Anglican Communion, based on careful study of the Holy Scriptures, and in light of tradition and reason, are not of one mind, and Christians of good conscience disagree about some of these matters” (resolution D025). We reiterate our belief that The Episcopal Church should exercise the restraint called for by the Anglican Communion and, likewise, will not consent to this election.

This election in Los Angeles comes at a time when we are expecting, within the next few weeks, the release of the final draft of the proposed Anglican Covenant, which seeks to guide our common life as a communion of churches. Our diocese, through actions at Diocesan Council and statements from our leadership, has consistently affirmed our support of the requests of the wider Communion in these matters, as well as the ongoing Anglican Covenant process.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Archbishop of Canterbury, Episcopal Church (TEC), Instruments of Unity, Same-sex blessings, Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion), TEC Bishops, TEC Conflicts, TEC Conflicts: Los Angeles, Windsor Report / Process

6 comments on “Statement from West Texas Bishops on the election this past weekend in the Diocese of Los Angeles

  1. Red Bird says:

    The last sentence in the middle paragraph is the important one.
    [i] We reiterate our belief that The Episcopal Church should exercise the restraint called for by the Anglican Communion and, likewise, will not consent to this election. [/i]

  2. New Reformation Advocate says:

    Yes, it’s certainly good for the bishops in W. TX to issue such a clear statement, particularly after the outrageous remarks of +Jon Bruno the Brute right after the election. Bravo for +Lillibridge and +Reed. They won’t be intimidated.

    However, I wish they’d been able to put more feeling into it. What’s lacking is any sense of anger, frustration, and vehemence. As far as I’m concerned, it’s excessively diplomatic. In particular, they merely echo the language of the Instruments in chiding the Diocese of LA for not “exercising restraint.” That’s too weak. What’s needed isn’t mere restraint, but genuine repentance, i.e., not just slowing down, but turning completely around and heading the opposite direction.

    Along with the declaration that they won’t confirm Glasspool’s election, I think one of the more important lines in this brief statement has to do with the apparently imminent release of the next (I won’t say final) draft of the proposed Covenant, which they expect to come out “within the next few weeks.” We’ll see.

    David Handy+

  3. Brien says:

    David Handy, the style is consistent with many of the previous statements that have been issued by these bishops. It is something like Detective Joe Friday–“just the facts m’am”. It follows the form: what happened, what it means, what we are doing, and goodbye. Actually refreshing, because it can be outlined and understood. Remember that Bishop Lillibridge is part of the Windsor Continuation Group, and good manners are part of his personality. The facts are clear.

  4. MotherViolet says:

    A sensible description of the facts from West Texas

  5. Christopher Johnson says:

    It’ll be interesting to see where Geralyn Wolf, another Communion Partner bishop, comes down on this.

  6. New Reformation Advocate says:

    Agreed, Brien (#3). And I’m well aware that it’s not just a matter of good manners; it can sometimes be good tactics too. As Proverbs reminds us, [i]”A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”[/i] I just wish that sometimes +Lillibridge would act more like the blunt Martin Luther than like Richard Hooker, with his excessive politeness.

    David Handy+