Response to the Anglican Covenant, prepared by the Deputation of the Diocese of New Jersey

Some see few positive consequences of signing on to the proposed Covenant. True, it would perhaps show some institutional humility and a willingness to “continue the conversation” with other member churches of the Communion. But we are continuing to do this now without the Covenant: Bishop Councell noted that there were three archbishops from other Communion members in attendance at the recent House of Bishops meeting. And Episcopal Church dioceses continue companion-diocese and other relationships with other dioceses throughout the Communion. Perhaps endorsing the Covenant would only furnish a perception of willingness to stay in the Communion -a willingness that is already there in actuality.

Many are worried about the negative consequences of endorsing the Covenant. Among these consequences are the establishment of a new unnecessary hierarchy, the loss of diversity within the Communion, the loss of connection to churches that may not endorse the Covenant, destruction of the Anglican ethos, the forced abandonment of GLBTQ Anglicans, attenuation of the voice of the laity in the life of the Communion, and by putting decision-making in the hands of the Standing Committee, the hierarchical structure will reduce the incentive for churches with differing views to communicate one-to-one, as they do now. And finally, to the extent that representatives from The Episcopal Church may end up on the Standing Committee acting under Covenant Section 4.2, we may participate in being an instrument of oppression of another church within the Communion.

Read it all.


Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, Anglican Covenant, Episcopal Church (TEC), TEC Bishops, TEC Diocesan Conventions/Diocesan Councils

9 comments on “Response to the Anglican Covenant, prepared by the Deputation of the Diocese of New Jersey

  1. driver8 says:

    [blockquote]Although undeclared explicitly, there may well be some in the deputation willing to support the Covenant.[/blockquote]

    This made me laugh. For all the heeing and hawing, the “deeply desiring”, the concerns about theological “puffery’ (another laugh out loud moment), the gnawing at the word ‘covenant” whilst trumpeting the Baptismal Covenant, and stating that the Covenant is “unnecessary”, destroys the Anglican ethos, abandons GLBTQ and may be an “instrument of oppression” at least some desire to be “affirmatively responsive”. One wonders what a negative response would be if some who produced this saw it as expressing their desire to be “affirmatively responsive”.

    In truth not a single one of their delegation was prepared to say openly that they supported the Covenant. Their “Response” can be summarized in a single sentence: “We are unanimously opposed”.

  2. Jon says:

    One test of good writing is the ear. So I tried reading the Deputation’s statement aloud, but I was stymied early on with the word, if such it be, GLBTQ. How do people pronounce it? I made a few attempts and I finally came up with Glub-Tuck. I realize it sounds like one of the minor diabolical officials from The Screwtape Letters (Screwtape, Wormwood, Scabtree, Triptweeze, Toadpipe, Slubgob) but I’m not sure that’s a problem.

    If any reappraiser knows a better pronunciation, I’m all ears — so to speak.

  3. Creedal Episcopalian says:

    It’s is much easier if you rearrange it to “GBLT”. (primacy shouldn’t be an issue, at least in context) Then it may be pronounced as “giblet”

  4. youngadult says:

    it’s been awhile since i posted here, but to answer the question in #2, it is pronounced letter by letter (“gee-ell-bee-tee-queue”).

  5. Formerly Marion R. says:

    “. . . attenuation of the voice of the laity in the life of the Communion. . . ”

    The assertion that any of this has anything to do with the voice of the laity is nothing but bizarre newspeak. I attend one of the largest parishes in DoNJ. Like nearly every other in the diocese– indeed, in the U.S.– it is, for all intents and purposes, congregational. Most adults in the parish have heard the words “Anglican Communion” from time to time but are genuinely disinterested in what it means. None have heard about the proposed “Covenant”. None have the vaguest idea what the Deputation is all about, and I am 100% certain each would wince or guffaw at any claim that the Deputation in any sense represents them or their opinions.

    Importantly, I would wager that no more than 10-15% grasp exactly what “LGBTQ” is supposed to mean, and few of those would accept the very large number of questionable premises implicit in its construction. Indeed, I can’t understand why nearly everyone has given up on bracketing the expression. For my part, one popular if infamous news site has earned my continued respect for continuing to bracket the word “gay”. At its root are fundamental anthropological assumptions that are neither scientific nor theologically sound.

    I believe it’s a Jesuit expression that once you’ve succeeded in setting the terms of discussion, you’ve already won the argument.

  6. deputy says:

    #2, Pronounce each of the letters individually, in succession.
    #4, Those words aren’t bracketed (placed in quotation marks?) because they are generally accepted by the majority of society. Hence, only those “infamous news site[s]” that seek to reverse this acceptance continue to use quote marks in their attempts to de-legitimize LGBTQ orientation.

  7. Rob Eaton+ says:

    Insert your sarcasm filter; it is SOE these days in every corner of TECUSA.
    However, there is no majority of society where the initials are “generally accepted” except that small segment of society that created the use of the initials in the first place. And, as always, the use of the abbreviation because people are too lazy to name every word identified by the initials is a de-legitimizing all in itself.

    Of what are you a deputy?

  8. Formerly Marion R. says:

    Orientation? or Identity? One orientation, or five distinct orientations with common ideological interests? Indeed, is all of this clearly established scientifically, or is the Q understood as signifying that whatever it is, it is plastic? For my part, I always smile and agree with the latest person to have slashed my tires.

  9. Sarah says:

    Marion R and Rob Eaton, your divisive inflammatory rhetoric is unChristian, deeply disturbing, and neanderthal.

    Rob, that “small segment of society” that created the initials is the *progressive* segment, thank you very much, and that’s the segment that matters.

    Marion R, it’s whatever minority sexual orientations that are currently faddish. The initials will be added to as society progresses, but not before, since we like to think of ourselves as cutting edge, not bat-faced loony, 100-years ahead of our time.

    So both of you settle down, shut your piehole, and let your better — “deputy” here — school you properly.