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A free floating commentary on culture, politics, economics, and religion based on a passionate commitment to the truth and a desire graciously to refute that which is contrary to it….
"He must hold firm to the sure word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to confute those who contradict it."
--Titus 1:9, Revised Standard Version
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The Episcopal Church has been wrestling with issues surrounding human sexuality for many years, a wrestling made more urgent because of the approval of an openly gay partnered person to be Bishop of New Hampshire, the authorization of same sex blessings in the Diocese of New Westminster in Canada, and the Windsor Report published in October of 2004—a report written in response to these actions. All throughout this time the General Convention passed nuanced resolutions open to broad interpretations on the matter, many of which are reviewed in the Report of the SCLM and depending on where emphasis is placed can be understood to say very different things.
This issue has been one which I have wrestled with a great deal. Like many in this Church I have known the faithful witness and wise counsel of openly gay clergy. I have had the privilege of working with life-long partnered persons as the rector of a parish. And like many of my generation I have wept for people I loved who died from AIDS. On the other hand, as a bishop I have promised to guard the faith and unity of the Church, a unity which has been challenged by the actions of this Church and the responses to it both within The Episcopal Church and around the world. I have taken seriously the concerns of our mission partners in Africa. And I cannot think about this issue without recalling the memory of a young Egyptian boy, the grandson of a former bishop of that diocese, telling me the effect our actions had on him as a member of the Christian minority in a predominantly Islamic country.
I am also aware that, in our context and that of much of Western Europe, this issue will cease to be one in a very short period of time. This is already true for many people under 30....
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Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal Episcopal Church (TEC) General Convention --Gen. Con. 2012 TEC Bishops Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion) Same-sex blessings * Theology Anthropology Ethics / Moral Theology Theology: Scripture
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