Notable and Quotable

Posted by Kendall Harmon

"I am very struck by our inability to communicate."

--Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori toward the very end of the session today with active clergy of the diocese of South Carolina

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop

Posted February 25, 2008 at 5:36 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

Comments are closed.
1. William Witt wrote:

My own hunch is that the clergy of South Carolina communicated just fine.  Perhaps the Presiding Bishop did not care to hear what they said?

February 25, 6:40 pm | [comment link]
2. Ouroboros wrote:

Katharine Jefferts Schori, stop, please just stop.

Stop trying to pretend that this is all about a failure to communicate.

Stop trying to pretend that the answer is talking, talking and more talking.

This is all about your, yes YOUR, pressing forward of a radical agenda that departs from the historic Catholic Faith in multiple, unashamed respects.

If that is what you want to do, fine, but say it.  Say, “We are changing things, plain and simple.  The Episcopal Church of today no longer proclaims the Faith of yesterday.”  And then let the chips fall where they may.  But STOP pretending this is all a big misunderstanding.

February 25, 6:46 pm | [comment link]
3. Christopher Johnson wrote:

Anyone fluent in Episcopalian knows that “I am very struck by our inability to communicate” really means ““I am very struck by your willful refusal to see how right I am.”

February 25, 6:48 pm | [comment link]
4. nwlayman wrote:

Uhhh, as I said earlier today…..

February 25, 6:52 pm | [comment link]
5. CanaAnglican wrote:


February 25, 7:08 pm | [comment link]
6. Ross Gill wrote:

I’m struck by her inability to listen.

February 25, 7:14 pm | [comment link]
7. SQ wrote:

As one very wise leader say recently, God is very, very good at incarnation. TEC failure in leadership is very clearly exhibited. His clarity is more than we can imagine.

February 25, 7:17 pm | [comment link]
8. Alta Californian wrote:

Perhaps Kendall, or someone else present, can comment on this (after appropriate reflection, of course).  Was there genuine failure, or, as has been suggested, did +Schori just not like what she heard?

February 25, 7:24 pm | [comment link]
9. the snarkster wrote:

By “communicate” she means “I talk, you listen”. I like Strother Martin’s version better “What we have here, is a failure to communicate.”

the snarkster

February 25, 7:28 pm | [comment link]
10. The Lakeland Two wrote:

#8 - Since Kendall posted this comment and was present, this is a commentary.  We also await a more complete context, but in itself says a whooooole lot.

February 25, 7:30 pm | [comment link]
11. Ouroboros wrote:

To whichever elf edited my post in No. 2 to replace “Ms.” with “Bishop,” I am an Anglo-Catholic and in good conscience cannot call Ms. Schori a “Bishop.”  However, my use of “Ms.” was not in any way a sign of gratuitous disrespect.  Indeed, when I became an Anglican I was taught it is 100% acceptable to call our clergy “Mister,” “Missus” or “Doctor” (if that latter is appropriate).  I was told this has been acceptable use for hundreds of years since many Evangelical Anglicans scruple about “calling any man Father” except the Lord alone, and so prefer to use “Mister.”  I have different but equally valid scruples about calling Ms. (or is it Dr.?) Schori “Bishop.”

February 25, 7:38 pm | [comment link]
12. Judith L wrote:

Actually, #2, a friend of mine reports that, years ago, when she was starting out in the Diocese of Oregon, KJS did say just about what you suggest she should say—to an amazed adult religious education class.  Something to the effect that everyone needs to get with the new set of beliefs—the old ones just won’t do.

February 25, 7:52 pm | [comment link]
13. Randy Muller wrote:

I am very struck by our inability to communicate.


Although I appreciate her honesty here, I am very struck by how out of touch the leadership of ECUSA is, especially over the past 4 years.

February 25, 8:02 pm | [comment link]
14. appletree wrote:

wonder what she was attempting to communicate when she accused those in attendance of not communicating her communications to those wanting to communicate their communal communications about our common communion . . . ?

February 25, 8:03 pm | [comment link]
15. samh wrote:

Failure to communicate between groups with radically different beliefs isn’t surprising.  I’m surprised at her surprise.

February 25, 8:07 pm | [comment link]
16. Philip Snyder wrote:

Oh I think we communicate just fine.  The problem is that we don’t like what the other side is saying.  From the reasserter side, we don’t like hearing the reappraisers change the Faith to suit their social conventions.  From the reappraiser side, they don’t like to hear their views of Scripture or Christian Living (what behaviors we can bless) called heretical or heterodox or sub-orthodox. 

Phil Snyder

February 25, 8:09 pm | [comment link]
17. TreadingGrain wrote:

What a day.  For the most part, I wished we had more time, as three hours was not long enough to address the substantive issues which divide TEC from the Diocese of South Carolina.  Alternatively, three hours of what I endured was a very long time.
May I say how proud I was of +Mark!  He was articulate, confident and bold in his leadership.  Of course, I thought the clergy spoke well and represented the hope that dwells within.  Hopefully, the audio/video of the day will be released shortly.  Thanks for the prayers in blogland. 
Steve Wood

February 25, 8:15 pm | [comment link]
18. Wilfred wrote:

Elves, I think #11 Ouroboros has a legitimate gripe.  Delete our entire post if you must, but do not change “Mrs” or “Ms” to “Bishop”, for in so doing you are changing our meaning.  If we accepted Mrs Schori as a bishop, chances are we would also accept all the other shinola going on in the Episcopal Church and we wouldn’t even be reading this blog.

You haven’t been changing bob carlton’s rants about “the Bush regime” into “President Bush’s Administration”, now have you?

Wilfred and Ouroboros, comments noted.  It was not I who edited the earlier comment.  It’s a discussion we’ve had before and will have again, for sure, and I understand and sympathize with the points being made and the concern over the edit.  But for now can I request that the thread not become a discussion of titles for +KJS nor about the elves’ elfing.  Thank you so much.—elfgirl signing off for the night.

This is Elf Lady and I didn’t change anything either.

February 25, 8:49 pm | [comment link]
19. Ralph wrote:

Perhaps she was using the Royal We in the second part of the sentence. (Unfortunately, We think not.)

“I am very struck by my inability to communicate.”

February 25, 8:59 pm | [comment link]
20. Undergroundpewster wrote:

What we have here is a failure to renounciate.

February 25, 9:03 pm | [comment link]
21. Pageantmaster ن wrote:

The titles of a Christian or other leader, whether or not you agree with them or their status is for the church concerned to determine, whether they be Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Episcopalian or anything else.  It is not dependant on the ecclesiology of anyone else and whether one would personally accept their ministry surely is irrelevant.  I will respect others by using their correct title: Moderator, Cardinal, Metropolitan or even Grand Ayatollah.  This diminishes the person addressing them not one jot.

February 25, 9:04 pm | [comment link]
22. Cennydd wrote:

#2   Ouroboros, your comment is right on the mark, and should be as plain to KJS as the nose on her face.  The problem is, will she see it, and if she does, will she understand it?  The answer to both is “yes,” but she will very conveniently ignore them…..just as she ignores everything else we’ve been trying to pound into her head.  She has an agenda, and she’s sticking to it!

February 25, 9:18 pm | [comment link]
23. Dale Rye wrote:

Some years ago, my EFM group was discussing the Tower of Babel story in Genesis. The lesson was incomprehensible for some of them, because they could not understand how confounding people’s tongues to make it more difficult for them to communicate could ever be of God. They saw good communications as an invariably unmixed blessing.

It soon became obvious that for these folks, it was an article of faith that any conflict between two people was always a failure to communicate. If they could simply understand one another, they would realize that they both (at bottom) wanted the same things that every other rational being wanted and could work out their misunderstanding. That notion is demanded by the Enlightenment paradigm that drives modern society. The only obstacle to universal human progress is miscommunication, because universal rationality guarantees that everyone really wants exactly the same things.

That paradigm changes if you take human sin seriously. In fact, when people want the wrong things, enhanced communication just makes it easier for them to perform wickedness. When people have a substantive disagreement, clear communication makes the differences between them more obvious, not less so. Western society isn’t in conflict with Al Qaeda because they don’t understand each other, but precisely because they do understand the incompatibility of their respective worldviews.

For most reappraisers, their differences with reasserters are fundamentally about the reasserters’ inability to understand that both sides of Anglicanism really want the same thing… to do Jesus’ will according to each person’s individual conscience. They just refuse to believe that most reasserters really do not agree with them, but think that there is some higher objective standard than the individual conscience. That is such a violation of the axioms of modern society as to be literally incomprehensible to them. Rather than accept that reasserters really mean what they say, it is easier to be struck by a failure to communicate.

February 25, 9:35 pm | [comment link]
24. Ouroboros wrote:

Let me be very clear that I am not griping and I appreciate what the Elves do here (is the verb really “elfing”?) so much.  grin

We call it elfing. We still don’t know who changed the word.

February 25, 9:36 pm | [comment link]
25. Chris Hathaway wrote:

Maybe she was struck by the deliberate lack of a Eucharist for her meetings there so that no one need communicate with her.

Have a Nicene Day

Slightly edited by elf.

February 25, 10:32 pm | [comment link]
26. Timothy Fountain wrote:

#23 Dale Rye a very worthwhile comment and thank you for summarizing the problem so well.

February 25, 10:53 pm | [comment link]
27. Chris Hathaway wrote:

Elves, you are becoming such dreary literalists. You allow no poetry or double entendre. What would you have made of Paul’s expressed desire that the Judaizers emasculate themselves?


We monitor carefully, Chris. We haven’t changed.

February 25, 10:57 pm | [comment link]
28. EpiscoPresbyBaptist wrote:

I am struck by her ability to obfuscate.

February 25, 11:14 pm | [comment link]
29. francis wrote:

She should really clarify: I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I am not sure that you realize that what you heard is not what I meant… Amen.

February 25, 11:17 pm | [comment link]
30. Sick & Tired of Nuance wrote:

Ok, the real question is:  Has Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori recently seen the movie Cool Hand Luke, or were her words just a happy accident?  The metaphor is (pardon the pun), striking.

February 25, 11:34 pm | [comment link]
31. Choir Stall wrote:

Rigorous Psychological exams every 4 years.
Spiritual Retreats for two weeks every 5 years (not vacations).
PB Office being that of a bishop rather than a politician who rides herd over the people who do the work.
That should go a long way to fix a few of these observations.

February 25, 11:55 pm | [comment link]
32. Chris Hathaway wrote:

It seems to me that there has been a decidced drop off of the number of comments on posts at T19. While I may be tempted to attribute this to elven editorial policy wink I think it actually may represent a broader malaise in the Anglican blogosphere and perhaps also in the broader Anglican community. Perhaps there is less commenting and communicating because everything has already been said, over and over and over again.

There is the old pacifis saying, “Jaw jaw is better than war war”
Well, not really. Not if things are worth fighting for.

I think many are done with the jawboning.

Have a Nicene Day

February 25, 11:56 pm | [comment link]
33. Choir Stall wrote:

“Dun’t yew evah tawlk that way about me agin…NEVAH! NEVAH!”
-Cool Hand Luke
...and KJS as she drove away from today’s S.C. meeting.

February 26, 12:03 am | [comment link]
34. Brad Drell wrote:

All I can say is, no kidding, she was struck by the collective inability to communicate.  She was struck by that!  I really can’t believe she had the nerve to act surprised.  Then again, she was elevated from the liberal hinterlands and probably has never really engaged conservatives other than that weirdo minority of which I am a part at General Conventions.

Okay, all you Anglo Catholics who can’t recognize KJS as a Bishop, please just call her Dr. Jefferts Shori so no liberals get out of joint about the unethical nature of our speech when calling her Ms. or Mrs.  She has a Ph.D and the hononary obligatory D.D. (oh, what I could say about both degrees which I won’t) for just being a Bishop.  So, calling her Doctor is appropriate.

February 26, 12:15 am | [comment link]
35. Jim the Puritan wrote:

“He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

February 26, 12:18 am | [comment link]
36. robroy wrote:

Okay, all you Anglo Catholics who can’t recognize KJS as a Bishop, please just call her Dr. Jefferts Shori so no liberals get out of joint about the unethical nature of our speech when calling her Ms. or Mrs.

When I was a mathematician and asked to be called Dr., people would ask are you a real doctor…or just a PhD? Maybe that was a subconscious motivator for me to go get the MD.

It also needs to be said that there are PhD’s and there are PhD’s. A PhD in Oceanography from a state school is not impressive at all unless it is from Scripps or a select few other universities. I tried to search for KJS’s PhD in a thesis search engine and couldn’t find it. Nor could I find any scientific papers published by her. Does anyone have access to her infamous CV where she stated she was a Dean at a non-existent school of theology. Maybe she made up the PhD, too?

So the liberals can get their panties in a wad, but I will still be referring to her as KJS or Ms Schori as a sign of disrespect to one who has taken the bride of Christ and brought contempt on her.

February 26, 1:01 am | [comment link]
37. Drew wrote:

As a bishop she’s a very good Oceanographer . . .

February 26, 1:04 am | [comment link]
38. Kendall Harmon wrote:

I edited the remark quickly in the midst of a busy day, and apologize to #2 as I assumed (erroneously) about the Bishop title.  I was focused on the last name.

I have made a correction

For the record, herewith the style guide:

The proper nomenclature is as follows:

On first reference, she is:

The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori


Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori

On second reference:

Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori

or simply

Jefferts Schori (AP style)

She is NEVER:

Bishop Schori

or, as some commentators consistently and erroneously say (despite having been corrected numerous times):

Mrs. Schori

I think it important to seek to be respectful and as courteous as one possibly can as part of living out our faith.  Part of showing this respect is referring to people, especially in terms of their names, in ways they themselves prefer—Kendall.

February 26, 1:16 am | [comment link]
39. nwlayman wrote:

#36, She certainly is a real PhD.  No one disputes that.  I think you didn’t look hard enough; others have mentioned papers she has published that can be found online.  She, both parents and one brother are quite legit PhD’s.  As #37 points out, that don’t make her a believer, let alone a bishop.  The “Dean” of an Adult Ed dept of an Episcopal Church in Oregon is another item altogether!

February 26, 1:16 am | [comment link]
40. robroy wrote:

#39, do you know where she got her PhD? The search engine didn’t find her, but I agree that it doesn’t mean it isn’t out there. The granting university would be helpful in the search.

February 26, 1:50 am | [comment link]
41. John Wilkins wrote:

robroy, you might want to reread the baptismal covenant.  It asks the catechumen “respect the dignity of every human being.”  You don’t like her, so what?  It says more about your own vindictiveness as a Christian, than it reflects upon her. 

Besides, Oregon State has several excellent departments, especially in the sciences.

February 26, 1:54 am | [comment link]
42. Wilfred wrote:

Ahem.  Well, Wilfred has a PhD, but no stuffed-shirt he, all his friends at T19 are welcome to call him just plain Wilfred.  Except the Pageantmaster #21, who is required to address him as Doctor Wilfred, whether he agrees with him or not.

(Pageantmaster has just got to be a Brit!  They’re so .... punctilious .)

February 26, 2:00 am | [comment link]
43. robroy wrote:

John, you are absolutely correct. I am suppose to forgive her for the terrible things she has done to the church.

February 26, 2:17 am | [comment link]
44. Jim the Puritan wrote:

Gee, I went to an old-fashioned college where we still addressed professors as “Mr.,” “Miss,” or “Mrs.,” despite the fact that virtually all of them had Ph.Ds.  Supposedly, once upon a time the only people who were entitled to be addressed as “Doctor” were M.D.s and D.D.s, and they still followed that custom.  It was considered a faux pas to address your professor as “Doctor,” although it was fine to call them “Professor.”

February 26, 2:32 am | [comment link]
45. Chris Hathaway wrote:

John, “respect the dignity of every person” means respecting a person as one created in the image of God and for whom Jesus died. It doesn’t mean respecting their exalted titles, especially when they have done nothing to deserve exaltation. I don’t remember Jesus or John the Baptist respecting the titles of the scribes and pharisees very much. I am of the opinion, and have heard no rational argument to disuade me otherwise, that if a person holds a holy office while grossly disprespecting the dignity and holiness of that office by willful misconduct they do not deserve the respect of the office.

But I know that some are afraid the antiChrists will point to their being called bad names, like antiChrist, as an argument that the orthodox are mean and that this idiotic idea will have some traction among those who would never get off their buts to fight heresy anyway (so why we should care about their opnion escapes me), so by all means, let’s speak respectfully of those raping the church and blaspheming the Lord.

It’s what Jesus would do….in a parrallel bizarro world

February 26, 2:50 am | [comment link]
46. flabellum wrote:

But what we are still waiting for is a blow by blow account of Dr Schori’s (the Presiding Heresiarch’s) inability to understand the clergy of SC.

February 26, 4:39 am | [comment link]
47. Pageantmaster ن wrote:

We’ve got used to waiting for Godot.

Maître Pageantmaster

February 26, 7:25 am | [comment link]
48. William Witt wrote:

My old professor, Stanley Hauerwas, had a policy of addressing everyone by Mr. or Ms. followed by their last name, and asked that his students follow the same policy.  To him I was always, “Mr. Witt,” not “Bill,” and he asked to be addressed as “Mr. Hauerwas,” not “Professor Hauerwas” or “Dr. Hauerwas,” or “Stan.”  He claimed it was a “Yale thing,” but also emphasized that it created equality and respect without unwarranted informality.

February 26, 8:25 am | [comment link]
49. Larry Morse wrote:

When and where do we find out what it was she was incommunicating about, or excommunicating about. What was said, and who said it?

February 26, 9:45 am | [comment link]
50. R. Scott Purdy wrote:

In my Society of Friends (Quaker) upbringing we eschewed titles - including Mr. & Mrs.  Titles are prideful.

February 26, 10:32 am | [comment link]
51. Dale Rye wrote:

Re #48—That was also a “Rice thing.” Since almost all the faculty had doctorates, it was considered gauche to use yours as a title. It was also demeaning to the few who didn’t. Most American lawyers have a JD, but we are generally prohibited from glorying over our colleagues who have an LLB. British surgeons are called “Mr.” to distinguish them from mere mortal medical doctors.

As Kendall says, it is only polite to use the names and titles that people prefer. I knew Presiding Bishop John Hines fairly well, and he always insisted on “Rt. Rev.” rather than “Most Rev.” That is no longer the style. Like her or not, she is still recognized by the Communion as an Anglican primate and is entitled to the same precedence as her 37 colleagues. Like her or not, she invariably refers to her last name as “Jefferts Schori,” and we aren’t entitled to change it because we think she should have dropped her maiden name entirely when she married. Calling her “Mrs. Schori” is a deliberate insult and rather more demeaning to the insulter than to her.

February 26, 10:40 am | [comment link]
52. Choir Stall wrote:

...and PhD can be pronounced as:
PHUD (as in Elmer) or
PHAD (as in TEC theology).

February 26, 10:55 am | [comment link]
53. Mike Watson wrote:

Ordinary folks endure being addressed by their first names by the twenty year old receptionist at the doctor’s office or being called “guys” by the server at the restaurant.  Mocking and insults should of course be avoided, but if the intent is to foster respect, sending around chiding emissaries to advise (see quotation in #38) that it’s Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori and “NEVER Bishop Schori” is likely to have the opposite effect.

February 26, 11:21 am | [comment link]
54. Katherine wrote:

Dale Rye #23 explains the problem very clearly and correctly. One side thinks the problem is “communication,” and the other side thinks the problem is “truth.”  Thanks.  And Chris Hathaway #32 also has a valid observation.  It’s all been said, so many times.

February 26, 11:24 am | [comment link]
55. Pageantmaster ن wrote:

#51 Dale Rye - also surgeons are addressed as Mr. in the UK historically because the practice of surgery was often undertaken by barbers

February 26, 11:29 am | [comment link]
56. evan miller wrote:

That bogus Baptismal Covenant didn’t exist when I was Baptized nor when I was confirmed.  It has nothing to do with me so I feel no need to feel or show any respect for the “dignity” of every human being.  I am obliged to love them in the sense of desiring what is best for them, but that’s a different matter.

February 26, 11:42 am | [comment link]
57. Drew wrote:

As Kendall says, it is only polite to use the names and titles that people prefer. I knew Presiding Bishop John Hines fairly well, and he always insisted on “Rt. Rev.” rather than “Most Rev.” That is no longer the style. Like her or not, she is still recognized by the Communion as an Anglican primate and is entitled to the same precedence as her 37 colleagues. Like her or not, she invariably refers to her last name as “Jefferts Schori,” and we aren’t entitled to change it because we think she should have dropped her maiden name entirely when she married. Calling her “Mrs. Schori” is a deliberate insult and rather more demeaning to the insulter than to her.

I do not (cannot—out of serious conviction) recognize her as a bishop in Christ’s Church.  For that reason I call her “Dr.” because, as has been stated, she’s earned it.  I have no problem with calling her “Dr.” and that is not demeaning—I read about “Dr. [Peter]Jensen,” “Dr. [Rowan] Williams,” and “Dr. [George] Carey”, etc. in the British press all of the time.
In this U.S., if she wants to be consistently referred to as “Jefferts Schori” then she really should start going by “Jefferts-Schori.”  Otherwise people will invariably refer to her as “Schori”—not necessarilly out of malace in their hearts but out of common usage.
Carol Mosley Braun faced the same thing in the Senate and had to pitch a hissy fit to have her name listed as “Mosley Braun” instead of “Braun.”  Hillary Rodham Clinton, on the other hand, uses “Clinton.”
Interestingly enough, my feelings toward all three women are remarkably similar!

February 26, 12:22 pm | [comment link]
58. Wilfred wrote:

#45 Chris raises an interesting question:  How did our Lord address the Pharisees?  Rabbi Brood-o’-Vipers?  Chief-Priest Hypocrite? 

Given the company He kept on Earth, I have always thought our Lord is rather ... relaxed ... about things like titles, but I could be wrong.  Scholars?

And #51 Dale’s fatwa that to call a woman Mrs or Miss is an insult, I find simply bizarre.  I am trying to be respectful, when I use that title to refer to (She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named).

February 26, 12:29 pm | [comment link]
59. Cennydd wrote:

I am perfectly willing to refer to the person currently occupying the office of Presiding Bishop as “Dr Jefferts Schori,” but I will not refer to her as “Bishop,” since I believe that no woman can legitimately claim to be a priest or bishop in the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church…....Christ’s Church.  And I am certainly not alone in that belief, as my bishop will tell you.

At least as far as this elf is concerned, “Dr. Jefferts Schori” is just fine.  At least that was a compromise we’d agreed on in discussions about comment policy on the old blog.  I assume it’s still ok with Kendall, or that if it’s not, he’ll let us know. —elfgirl

February 26, 12:45 pm | [comment link]
60. libraryjim wrote:

Can we still use “KJS”?  That is my preference, and cuts through all the other problems, IMO.

Someone pointed out on another site that the use of the term “Doctor” derived from the Hebrew/Greek teacher, of which Jesus said “Call no one ‘teacher’”, can anyone supply confirmation or denial?

Jim Elliott <><

Jim, as an elf, I’ve used KJS or +KJS often.  I believe we agreed on the old blog that it was acceptable.  I’ll double check.  The main thing is to avoid BELITTLING names and titles.  e.g. no “Kate” “Katie” no minus sign before her name, etc.

February 26, 1:03 pm | [comment link]
61. libraryjim wrote:

Elves, that is what I thought, but with all that’s going on, I forget things occasionally.

But, thanks for checking.

Jim E. <><

February 26, 1:42 pm | [comment link]
62. Billy wrote:

Dale, #23, an excellent description of the current paradigm.  I’ve always found your comments very inciteful. 
John Wilkins, #41, no one ever heard “respect the dignity of every human being” before the 1979 BCP, and I’m not sure that anyone knows what it means even today.  Certainly a reappraiser like you cannot tell us that it should be interpreted literally.  Should we not be critical of a pedofile, rapist, or murderer ... was Jesus respectful of the money changers in the temple?  As indicated above, was he respectful of the scribes and pharisees whom he called a “brood of vipers?”  What does it mean, JW?  Surely you aren’t going to say it means to be nice or polite to everyone.

February 26, 1:56 pm | [comment link]
63. Phil wrote:

Is the “style guide” given above for this blog?  Good grief - if, as the Elves say above, “The main thing is to avoid BELITTLING names and titles,” then I don’t see what’s wrong with “Mrs. Schori,” or “Schori.”  The former simply recognizes the Anglo-Catholic view that she isn’t a bishop, and the latter is pretty routine - I’ve sometimes used “Akinola,” “Williams,” etc., and not meant any disrespect by it.

February 26, 2:42 pm | [comment link]
64. Kendall Harmon wrote:

Phil how can you write: 

I don’t see what’s wrong with “Mrs. Schori,” or “Schori.”

This is not what she wishes to be called.

Why is that so hard?  Her name is Jefferts Schori.  It is disrespectful not to call someone by their correct name.

February 26, 3:12 pm | [comment link]
65. Phil wrote:

Kendall, perhaps I misunderstood.  Is the problem with the “Schori” part (i.e., it should be “Jefferts Schori,” in which case I agree, and I confess honestly I’ve simply been making a mistake) or the “Mrs.” part - or both?

I only ask because I would like to do it some way you prefer that is also consistent with Catholic teaching.  Perhaps that is “KJS,” as the elf says.

February 26, 3:24 pm | [comment link]
66. Mike Watson wrote:

It ought to be acceptable not to have to remember and be able to summon up mid-sentence idiosyncratic preferences as to what someone would like to be called.  Observance of normal polite usages ought to be enough, if not to endear you to the person being spoken of, at least to spare you from being charged with disrespect.

February 26, 3:42 pm | [comment link]
67. Billy wrote:

I’m not sure what the common thread is here anymore, but it seems to have turned, with Kendall’s help, to what is polite and respectful, as he stated:
“I think it important to seek to be respectful and as courteous as one possibly can as part of living out our faith.  Part of showing this respect is referring to people, especially in terms of their names, in ways they themselves prefer—Kendall.”

While I generally agree with Kendall’s statement, and “especially in terms of their names,” I don’t necessarily agree that one always has to “show respect” by “referring to people ... in ways they themselves prefer.”  That is a philosophy liberal establishment (and reappraisers) have used for some time to incrementally move toward their goals.  For instance, use of the term “gay” instead of “homosexual” or “queer,” is much less distasteful for the activities to which those terms refer, and is a complete misuse and abuse of the word “gay” prior to its adoption by the homosexual community and its subsequent required usage by the PC community.  I have even heard the Dean of a certain cathedral say in an open forum that use of the word “homosexual” is disrespectful to “gay” people because they don’t want to be called that, they want to be called “gay.”  Similarly, language and simply agreeing with what someone wants to be said (and being told that to disagree is disrepectful) is a dangerous thing.  For instance, again, the homosexual movement could not get GC2003 to pass a resolution that it agreed that SSBs were an approved part of the community of TEC, so it go a resolution passed “acknowledging” that SSBs were occurring within the TEC community.  Wonderful compromise ?  or incremental movement for homosexual movement?  I think the latter because the wording was not precise and was intentionally made ambiguous, as this same prominent Dean said in the same forum, because it could be used to indicate approval. 

Now having said all of the above, is not the real thread about what communication was not understood by each side in the meeting with The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori and the less reverend active clergy of the D. of S.C.  Kendall, are you able to give us a hint of the content of these discussions?

February 26, 4:02 pm | [comment link]
68. libraryjim wrote:

I’m hopeful that a transcript is in the works!! 

JE <><

February 26, 4:16 pm | [comment link]
69. nwlayman wrote:

#40, I think it’s OSU.

February 26, 4:41 pm | [comment link]
70. Alta Californian wrote:

I must admit I usually write “+Schori” just out of expedience.  “Jefferts Schori” seems a little cumbersome, but Kendall is right, that is her name, and it is the most common courtesy to call someone by their name.  Title is a separate issue.  I personally think “Dr.” is an appropriate enough honorific for those who have problems with her ordination.  But what do I know.

Now, to those who do not recognize the 1979 Baptismal Covenant, I would ask, what do you say when the service calls for a renewal of your baptismal vows?  Do you not use the rite in the Prayer Book, which has a renewal of vows, including the “dignity” vow?  Do you simply not say that one, or cross your fingers, as the liberals supposedly do when saying the creed?  Or are you all in 1928 parishes, or in congregations that never have baptisms and never, ever, ever renew your vows?  I myself am irked by the “dignity” vow, but I still say it, and I still endeavor to keep it.  If you don’t recognize the validity of the 1979 Prayer Book, than I humbly suggest you have more serious problems than what to call the Most Reverend Katherine Jefferts Schori, DD, PhD. 

And I will continue to disagree with the likes of Mr. Hathaway, who continually argue that the reigning “heretics” are beyond the pale of our common courtesy or respect.  Christ could be jarring at times, particularly with Pharisees who were trying to trap him, and with the temple money changers.  But He also told us to love our enemies.  If we can’t show that love with even the most common of courtesies, than perhaps Anglicanism has become too toxic to deserve saving. 

All that being said, many of the TEC liberals I know, refer to her simply, and quite lovingly, as “Katherine” or “Bishop Katherine”.

February 26, 4:49 pm | [comment link]
71. Katherine wrote:

Her name is spelled “Katharine,” with an “a” in the middle, #70.

February 26, 5:04 pm | [comment link]
72. Billy wrote:

#70, like you, I say the “dignity” thing in Baptism services, but I still am not sure what it means in different situations.  Are “common courtesies” a way of giving love, when those courtesies send a dishonest message that misleads someone into believing something that isn’t true, and acting on that belief to his/her detriment?  Should we, as reasserters, as a “common courtesy” sit and listen to heretical sermons and not say or do anything ... is that Christian love?  What would Jesus do?  What did He do when He was asked unholy questions or when he saw unholy use of The Temple?

February 26, 5:04 pm | [comment link]
73. David Bailey wrote:

It might be helpful to remember that many of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox clergy who do not consider our bishops to be in Apostolic Succession still refer to them as “Bishop Jones” (or whatever).

Also, the black pentecostal Baptist preacher across the street from us is “Bishop Victor Couzens” and I always refer to him in public as “Bishop Couzens”.

David Bailey (who has been called Mr. Bailey, Dr. Bailey, Fr. Bailey, Pastor Bailey, Reverend Bailey and any combination of the above!)

February 26, 5:07 pm | [comment link]
74. libraryjim wrote:

Affirming the dignity of a person does not mean we have to allow them to continue to lead us astry (or attempt to)—even Jesus had harsh words for the religious leaders in His day who did just that. It does not mean leaving them to continue in heresy or sin—in fact that would be the opposite of acting to recognize their ‘dignity’ as humans—Jesus continually called sinners to repentance and to follow Him.

February 26, 5:15 pm | [comment link]
75. RandomLutheran wrote:

I don’t mean to quibble over Dr. Harmon’s style guide, but as far as bishop titles go, we in the ELCA (your TEC full communion partner), often refer to our presiding bishop simply as Bishop Hanson.  (Of course, there is no gender or multiple last names issues there.)  Whether it’s correct or not, I don’t know, but until reading these comments would not have thought it otherwise.

I would respectively suggest, with regard to those who refuse to acknowledge the title of the (presiding) bishop to Jefforts Schori, I would say that you are must be Anglo-Catholics who as a result of her election no longer belong to a TEC parish, if her position is so much of a problem.  If so, you no longer have a dog in the ECUSA fight, and perhaps a bit of moderation is in order.  I despair over the trajectory both TEC and ELCA are following, and am no apologist for either.  But a little courtesy and charity are in order, even for our Worth Opponents.  FWIW, myself and some Lutherans refer to her simply as “Bishop Schori”, a practice I will modify the next time I speak of her.  It is an amusing notion to me that when she and Bishop Hanson meet, he is the reasonable one.  wink

I’m thankful that the clergy of South Carolina had the opportunity to speak truth to power, even if “The Man” had trouble listening.  Not sharing the Eucharist would seem an adequate way of demonstrating the divide amongst you, without resorting to petty name games.

February 26, 5:22 pm | [comment link]
76. R. Scott Purdy wrote:

Inasmuch as I left TE"c” for the Diocese of Bolivia, I no longer have “a dog in the E[“c”]USA fight” per se.  I do, however, have an interest in the Episcopal influence on the Anglican Communion.  In that arena, it seems the inability to communicate mirrors the problems experienced in South Carolina.

February 26, 5:32 pm | [comment link]
77. dwstroudmd+ wrote:

An inability to communicate is exhibited by the PB.  She won’t listen.  She is the properly elected head of the HOBs who want her to do exactly as she is doing and thereby incarnate their philosophy of listening.  Not only do you need ears to hear but ( a la the Revelator) you need eyes to see.  Now having done both, what think ye?

February 26, 5:53 pm | [comment link]
78. Choir Stall wrote:

A Rose by any other name is still a Rose.
A Heretic by any other name…

February 26, 6:44 pm | [comment link]
79. Alta Californian wrote:

Katherine, #71.  I stand corrected. (“And I making the case to get her name right…Well isn’t that embarrassing” he whispered to himself sheepishly). 

Billy, libraryjim, Choir Stall, so stand up to her!  Speak the truth!  Confront her errors, and refute her teaching to those who fawn over her!  But do not play petty word games with her name, or her title.  When we make our comments about her personal and petty, it makes it seem to the world that our disagreements with her are personal and petty.  No, our disagreement with her is great and grave, and so should our comments about her be.  Calling her by proper name (yea, even spelling it correctly!) and addressing her by title and according her respect and courtesy reveals that our message is serious and substantive.  All else makes us seem a disgruntled minority with very little of importance to say.

February 26, 7:34 pm | [comment link]
80. libraryjim wrote:

Nice to know you think she needs to be stood up to and refuted. 

However, I will keep using the designation “KJS” in reference to herself (which is a proper Irish term, by the way). IMO, as one who attempted to pursue the path to ordination and was blocked due to my conservative theology, it’s downright insulting to have someone with her (lack of) credentials and gnostic theology ordained a priest, let alone be elevated to office of Bishop and PB.  <sigh> but there you have it.  It only goes to prove the depths to which TEC has slithered. 

Oh, a side note. My wife saw the initials TEC for the first time in reading over a post of mine and questioned it.  So I explained the change in name from Protestant Episcopal Church USA to The Episcopal Church and why. Her only comment: “That’s a stupid thing to do.”  And she takes very little notice of the ‘troubles’ in the church—she says she’s happy to leave that to me. grin

Jim E. <><

February 26, 7:46 pm | [comment link]
81. Alta Californian wrote:

Jim, you bet I think she needs to be refuted.  She spoke to our diocesan convention a year or two before being elected PB.  She spoke at length in the keynote address about the mission of the Church, and preached at the Eucharist about the importance of the Gospel, and not once did she mention Jesus.  And I’ve heard from friends in Nevada how she unified the diocese by “reconciling” anyone who opposed her right out of a job.  I find her theology vacuous and inane, and when she was elected PB my response was “you’ve got to be kidding me”.  But none of that means I should call her names.

Personally I think initials are fine.  But, like Kendall, I find “Mrs. Schori”, “Katie”, and “the Grand Heresiarch” are not particularly helpful.  I myself may lapse into calling her just “+Schori” but I’ll try to remind myself that I should show more respect to how she wishes to be addressed.

February 26, 9:30 pm | [comment link]
82. GoSane+ wrote:

“I am very struck by our inability to communicate.”
I am posting here for the first time.  I am struck by the amount and various degrees of the responses to this statement, which is not set in any context other than the one stated.  I have researched and taught in the field of communication for over 30 years (Ph.D., University of Colorado).  One of the fundamental principles of human communication is that if one or more persons are together, it is impossible to “not communicate” on several verbal and nonverbal layers.  So in my opinion, the above statement by PB Katherine Jeffets-Schori is not possible in the experience of humans engaging in any kind of discourse.  She may well have “been struck”, as in discouraged, surprised, etc. at the outcome of the reported communication.  But neither she, nor those with whom she was speaking can exhibit an “inability” to communicate.  We are always communicating something!  What I suspect is what some other contributors have alluded to:  the outcome of the respective communication was not what she had hoped.  She might have more accurately said, “I am struck that our communication has failed to find common ground,” or something similar.  Finally, having blathered about it, I’m reminded that all communication is influenced by the context in which it occurs; thus, until the “rest of the story”—Paul Harvey might say—is known, there are additional interpretations waiting to be made.  I still believe the following is true:  “Words don’t mean—people mean!”  Thank you for providing a chance to air my opinion.

February 26, 9:38 pm | [comment link]
83. GoSane+ wrote:

Sorry. . .I omitted the “r” in Katherine Jefferts-Schori.

February 26, 9:41 pm | [comment link]
84. GoSane+ wrote:

Got it. . .Katharine Jefferts Schori.  Whew!

February 26, 9:43 pm | [comment link]
85. Pageantmaster ن wrote:

Welcome Rev. Dr. GoSane.
For the last few years we have all been admonished by our betters to engage in a ‘listening’ process and indeed it is deeply dispiriting to realise that there are still some of us who are apparently unable to communicate.

Beware - coming out of lurker-mode - you might enjoy it. 
All the best.

February 26, 9:47 pm | [comment link]
86. Choir Stall wrote:

I live in Virginia and stuck my neck out to my bishop inquiring of him how in the name of sense he could have endorsed someone for PB with such scurilous and skimpy credentials as Katherine Jefferts Schori. I wrote a 3 page letter, which earned his attention. I told him that I believe that his actions of endorsement further strained relations not only in our parish, but our national Province, and the wider Communion. He said that he was “just one voice”. I said “and rather weak”.

February 26, 10:09 pm | [comment link]
87. Choir Stall wrote:

BTW, rwgaskill;
I’m not very charitable to KJS and her acolytes as they pursue a monolithicly liberal agenda, forcibly separating us from mainline world Anglicanism (and mainline Christianity in general), and smirk through the courts in the process. Discuss among yourselves while we wait.

February 26, 10:12 pm | [comment link]
88. GoSane+ wrote:

Pageantmaster: I certainly hope my statement did not smack of condescension or as coming from one of “the betters.” The point I had hoped to make was that we are emphatically, not “unable to communicate,” per se. However, we may be unable to communicate verbally or nonverbally very effectively.  BTW, if “lurker-mode”  describes a person who mostly reads blogs but rarely posts, then that would describe me accurately.  I guess the reason I don’t post much is because so much of what I read on various blogs (liberal and conservative alike) is verbal quibbling, quarreling, fighting and ad hominem attacks.  If it’s “I’m right and you’re wrong”, then useful dialogue is precluded, in my opinion. I think persons have to share some place of common ground if any sort of reasoned discourse is to take place. But thank you for your kind words of welcome.  Who knows, maybe I’ll “come out of lurker-mode” again!

February 26, 10:16 pm | [comment link]
89. Kendall Harmon wrote:

I am ending this thread.  I would like to say in conclusion that charity is to be extended as part of living out the call of Christ.  To all.  Jesus even called us to love our enemies. It is very difficult, yes, but it is our call.

It is an important part of our witness to give attention to how we say things as well as what we say.

February 26, 10:18 pm | [comment link]
Registered members must log in to comment.

Next entry (above): U.S. is still overwhelmingly Christian, study finds

Previous entry (below): Existing Home Sales Hit 9-Year Low

Return to blog homepage

Return to Mobile view (headlines)