Sunday, June 18, 2006

Day Five: Miracles Never Cease

The Episcopal Church made history today with the election of the Rt. Rev. Katherine Jefferts Schori as Presiding Bishop and Primate, a first for the Church catholic. She was elected by the House of Bishops on the fifth ballot, leading throughout the balloting in a neck-and-neck race with Bishop Henry Parsley of Alabama. Consent was given by the House of Deputies by an overwhelming vote, even with conservatives calling for a vote by Orders. The Church has been changed forever. Alleluia!!!

There was a feeling of exhilaration, excitement, and hope throughout the House of Deputies. In another jolt to conservatives, both Houses have now passed the first of the Special Committee resolutions - one dealing with Delegated Episcopal Pastoral Oversight (DEPO). The resolution was strenghtened by the Bishops, who added language enshrining traditional Anglican Provincial autonomy. In another vote by Orders, the House of Deputies overwhelming defeated conservative attempts to weaken the resolution.

Tomorrow, a Special Order of business will be observed in the afternoon to consider four more of the Special Committee's resolutions on: 1. Expressing regret for the actions of GC2003, 2. moratoria on electing partnered gay bishops, 3. moratoria on authorizing rites of blessing same-sex unions, 4. participating in the developoment of an Anglican Covenant Process.

My guess is that 1 will be weakened by amendment, 2 & 3 will be combined into one resolution by the Special Committee and defeated outright in a vote by orders, and 4 will be amended or defeated. Even some liberals on the Special Committee have been calling for lesbian and gay folks to fall on their swords "for the sake of the Anglican Communion." They don't seem to understand that Jesus did away with the scapegoating mechanism upon which human religion and culture has been created, nor do they see the hypocrisy of their attempt to speak of "full inclusion" on one hand, and "moratoria," on the other. These "institutional liberals" put human traditions before the needs of human beings. Didn't Jesus condemn such behavior on the part of religious authorities?

Funny how politics, even in the Church, makes strange bedfellows.


Lisa Fox said...

I sense that we had been hoping for a vote on TWR resolutions prior to the election of a new PB. But now that +Schori has been elected PB, don't you think that strengthens our hand on the TWR votes, as it makes clear that even the Bishops are not going to knuckle-under to the likes of +
Akinola? At least that's how it's looking to me, out here in the Boring Midwest.

R said...


As always, many thanks for the insightful reflections "from the floor."

Three cheers for our new Presiding Bishop, and many prayers for strength for you and our other delegates and bishops these last few days of GC.

God's peace,

Kevin Jones said...

moderates who say wait are the number one group on mlk's list of obstacles to justice in the letter from a birmingham jail. moratoria are just a tool for moderates to say wait. it's wrong. it was wrong then. it's wrong now. and it's not just wrong, it's the deepest obstacle to justice.