Sunday was the flock’s first chance to hear more about the recent decision by the Episcopal bishops , including Colorado’s Rob O’Neill, to hold off at least until 2009 on encouraging same-sex unions and openly gay bishops.
Schism looms anyway, a troubling prospect to churches like St. Philip’s, where the Rev. Theron Walker got applause Sunday when worshipper Tom Cook called out from his pew, “Thank you, Father, for being faithful (to traditional Christianity).”
Later, Walker put his head in his hands and said, only half-kidding, “The stress is driving my wife (Denise) crazy.”
First, why dwell on this story?
I think there’s a historical poetry and power connected to the Episcopal Church, whose roots are steeped in the Church of England and the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation. The denomination began with the marriage issue – Henry VIII’s marriages, to be exact – and five centuries later the marriage issue, in the form of same-sex unions, may shatter it.