Sunday, February 25, 2007

Gone to the loo :: NYT

Hardly a Christian spectacle, the rivalry has been more like a log-rolling contest where the conservatives and the liberals are battling to push each other off a spinning log, while trying to make it look as if their adversaries voluntarily jumped. Now, with the ultimatum, the liberals may need a lot of deft footwork to stay on the log.

Passions run so high that on the more than 150 Anglican blogging sites, the name-calling is vicious.
And there's this, too:
The Episcopal Church is one of the few [American denominations] that did not split over slavery. Churches in the Confederate States did form a separate alliance, Mr. Kater said, but the national Episcopal Church met without them and “pretended they were out of the room,” calling out the dioceses’ names for a vote “as if they had just gone to the bathroom.”

“After the war there was a simple reconciliation process, and they were all brought back in as if it had not happened,” he said. “I was taught in seminary that this was the great strength of the Episcopal Church, that when all the other churches divided, it stayed together and this was a sign of its great sense of unity. I think it was shameful, that the church considered that unity was more important than slavery.”
Will homosexuality be our Waterloo?


Anonymous said...

Another way to read the history of the Episcopal Church with respect to slavery is that we did split for a brief period, but that the northern body graciously pretended not to notice. This allowed the southern part of the church to return after the war. It sounds as if Mr. Kater would have preferred that the rift were more permanent. Had it been, I wonder where we would have been in the 60's during the Civil Rights movement.

There are those on both sides of this issue who would rather see us split than stay together, largely because it's easier. We are constantly tempted with the same false choice by both the left and the right: "Unity vs. Integrity". But where does it say that we are called to take the easy way out?

- Mark

John B. Chilton said...

I am sorely tempted by the choice of splitting, although I don't know that it's a false choice. A bad choice maybe.

I understand your point (which seems to the PB's point) that staying in conversation is the better choice to accomplish justice here and abroad.

I do wonder if it isn't hypocritical to accept the conditions of the Communique with our fingers crossed -- from the point of folks like Archbishop Venables.