Bonnie Anderson’s closing remarks to The Episcopal Church’s Executive Council

Posted by Kendall Harmon

It’s not surprising that it’s hard for us to adapt our decision-making processes to create the change we need and to respond to change in the world around us. This is halting and imperfect work. The inertia that keeps us stuck in the old model—in the ethic of survival that Stringfellow cautions us against—is powerful. I feel its pull, and I imagine you do too.

But I think that when we talk about a “transitional” budget we’re dressing up that ethic of survival instead of mustering the courage we need to free ourselves of it. During the remainder of the budget process, I hope and pray that we can resist the inertia that will lull us into complacency, confront change bravely, and come up with a budget that we can consider at General Convention faithfully and in good conscience.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)Executive CouncilHouse of Deputies President

Posted January 30, 2012 at 8:50 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. c.r.seitz wrote:

The rhetoric is definitely escalating, indicating the seriousness of the problem and also the disagreements in play.

The HOD president here calls for a dismantling of the PB’s office for budgetary and structural reasons both. This shows an odd alliance between those emphasizing diocesan sovereignty and mission (CFL, SC, Dallas, et al) and the HOD president. The forces at work in this Executive Council struggle are pulling in understandable but also very peculiar directions.

So it appears the 19% figure has won out. I ask again. How does a voluntary asking translate into hard budget figures (beyond a kind of general hopefulness/guesstimation)? Many dioceses cannot afford this much and many do not choose to give this percentage.

Clearly this story is going to continue to play out. There appears to be a lot of conviction, ramped up by the problem and also the apparent wish to vye for power and influence. (I do not recall a President of the HOD ever playing the public role we see in the present incumbent).

January 30, 11:45 am | [comment link]
2. A Senior Priest wrote:

Without the trappings of omnipotence the Wizard of Oz is just another flim-flam artist.

January 30, 12:21 pm | [comment link]
3. wvparson wrote:

Yes, see the letter from PHOD taking issue with the PB. It’s published at Episcopal Cafe.

January 30, 12:26 pm | [comment link]
4. cseitz wrote:

#3—can you find any explanation for the revenue predictions associated with 19%? 30% of the dioceses are barely able to do business. Probably 15 or so give/have given far less out of conviction.

January 30, 12:59 pm | [comment link]
5. billqs wrote:

Wow, quite a little dust-up right before General Convention.  Perhaps, this will make GenCon interesting to watch beyond the usual reasons.

January 30, 1:32 pm | [comment link]
6. wvparson wrote:


No. Perhaps we shall learn more when details of the proposed budget are posted.

January 30, 2:36 pm | [comment link]
7. Cennydd13 wrote:

Well, if Anderson is serious about restructuring the PB’s office, then why not eliminate the office staff and revert the PB back to simply presiding over the House of Bishops while giving the PB and HOD president the responsibility for jointly overseeing General Convention?

January 30, 3:05 pm | [comment link]
8. Cennydd13 wrote:

But then again, that would make sense, wouldn’t it, and therefore they wouldn’t buy it, would they?

January 30, 3:06 pm | [comment link]
9. billqs wrote:

But I thought all of us who were warning about the unprecedented power grab by the PB were just a bunch of paranoid conservatives!

January 30, 3:10 pm | [comment link]
10. francis wrote:

What are they saying on the dark side?  In the past, the asking is more sacred than ordination vows with Bishops ready to fight to the death to pass on the GC asking, even when it wrecks local ministry, which it is now doing in most cases.

January 30, 5:01 pm | [comment link]
11. Pageantmaster ن wrote:

Notwithstanding the entertaining catfight between two ladies with doubtful haircuts, isn’t the truth of the matter that they have spent the income and endowments earmarked for mission on litigation?  But of course, no harm in trying to again touch gullible church members for money for ‘mission’ [assuming anyone remembers how to do it].

Oh well.

January 30, 5:43 pm | [comment link]
12. In Texas wrote:

Pageantmaster, remember, TEC was perfectly correct in using “mission” endowments for litigation, since “mission” is whatever the church happens to be doing.

January 30, 6:15 pm | [comment link]
13. Pageantmaster ن wrote:

#12 Thanks In Texas for the reminder; that said, TEC must have had a mission at one stage, other than being beastly to Bishop Lawrence and South Carolina, and shovelling its parishioners’ tithes into Mr Beers’ elastic tummy.

Mind you, if they are just going to use mission money to promote aborting other peoples’ children, perhaps it is best not to give them any more money to waste. 

Still, perhaps someone somewhere remembers a time when TEC used to have a mission.  South Carolina has a mission, and a clear one, as we heard from the Mere Anglicanism videos, but who is listening to those like South Carolina who do remember?

January 30, 7:25 pm | [comment link]
14. Hursley wrote:

But I thought only men were committed to hierarchy, while women were universally collaborative? Another ideal shattered.

January 30, 10:21 pm | [comment link]
15. Sarah wrote:

RE: “while women were universally collaborative? . . . “

Yes.  We womyn are gentle, maternal, communal, dolphin-like creatures.

Men are violent, patriarchal, linear—even their language has a tearing unloving ferocity to it that is not at all in the Spirit of the Krista within us all.

Hursley is clearly male.  You can tell by the violent divisiveness of his comment, and it’s quite obvious that in a just non-oppressive society he would be torn limb from limb and ridden out of town on a rail.

Gentle Matriarch,


January 31, 12:21 am | [comment link]
16. MichaelA wrote:


“Womyn” still carries patriarchal overtones, as some may be deceived by the pronunciation.  The correct term is “persun”.

January 31, 3:00 am | [comment link]
17. Sarah wrote:

Another oppressive male attempts to rule with a rhetorical rod of iron I see; this is why the deconstruction of language is so vital to our cause.  No, “persun” is not correct as it fails to reveal the singular and perfect gender about which I was speaking.

January 31, 10:24 am | [comment link]
18. MichaelA wrote:

Patient: Is it a boy or a girl?
Obstetrician: Now, I think it’s a little early to start imposing roles on it, don’t you?
[Monty Python’s ‘Meaning of Life’]

January 31, 7:30 pm | [comment link]
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