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Friday, September 29, 2006

The Great Episcopal Divorce

Over the past few years since the Episcopal Church has ordained a homosexual bishop there has been a lot of smack talked about schism or a church split, blah blah blah. It's old talk now. But I think it finally will happen. If you don't keep up on worldwide Anglican news some rather startling developments have come about:

VirtueOnline: RWANDA: Anglican conservatives urge U.S. break away

This is really the first time I've heard the African (and others) Anglican Bisshops come out directly and advocate for a split. Previously it has been alluded to or threatened but now it is out in the open publically that they advocate for a split within the Episcopal Church.

VirtueOnline: LONDON: "Anti-gay bishops vote to split the evangelical church in two"

Ruth Gledhill is the one to call them "anti-gay" Bishops, which just goes to show how little she understands this issue. To continue to link this division within the Episcopal Church and worldwide Anglican Communion to sexuality is just plain ignorance. I suppose since Ms. Gledhill is a journalist, she could be just trying to be inflammatory and sell more papers.

VirtueOnline: Observers respond to Kigali, Camp Allen statements

Here is a quote from a Via Media leader in this article:
"'No matter how many people might cheer for it, or believe their Christian faith to require it, it would be a church founded in large measure on the exclusion and rejection of a certain kind of human being -- a gay or lesbian human being -- and of anyone (and, indeed, an entire church) who sees Christ's face and faith in such persons,' he said. 'Can this truly be how we live out Christ's love in our time?'"
What he is saying is that the group within the Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion advocating for schism would be founding a new church on the basis of excluding a certain type of human being. And that is clearly where he is missing it.

Firstly, this would not be forming a new church. It would not be a "church founded in large measure on the exclusion and rejection of a certain kind of human being". No new church is being formed, unless if you consider as the Windsor Report does, the Episcopal Church choosing to walk apart as the forming of a new church.

Secondly, this move to reallign the church is not about sexuality. It is fundamentally about the Bible -- how it is interpreted, understood and applied to one's life. An issue of sexuality may have brought this reallignment to quicken but the rejection of certain persons and the issue of homosexuality is not the issue.

One day your children and mine might study church history in college and seminary. This seismic shift in the Anglican Communion that we are witnessing will take up a chapter or two. I no longer believe the Episcopal schism "might" happen. It will and it is much closer than I previously thought.

Comments on "The Great Episcopal Divorce"


Blogger Rick said ... (10:21 PM, September 30, 2006) : 

Hi Stevie Baby,

Interesting that you mentioned the Camp Allen report. 1-2 weeks before the bishops met at Camp Allen, our church program staff met there for 2 days to study and discuss George Barna's "Revolution" - good time. We knew the bishops were going to be there after us and in a one hour prayer service I led for our staff we prayed over that whole situation that would be following us there.

I just took a moment to Google and read the resulting statement. Very interesting times. Of course I agree that the divergence of the ECUSA from the Communion is going to happen. ALready we've seen churches here in TX depart (and one of them joined the Covenant as you probably know-the other one with which I am familiar is in PLano and is where I first took Alpha training.)

Strange days...



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