(CSM) Episcopal approval of same-sex blessings: Will it hurt church’s global ties?

Posted by Kendall Harmon

“For the church to say, ‘This is an active part of our life in ministry, and we support this,’ is an extraordinarily important step,” said the Very Rev. Katherine Hancock Ragsdale, president of Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass. “It shows that when this church says it welcomes all people, it means it....”

“It means the Episcopal Church is now separating itself that much more from the Anglican Communion,” says Hood College historian David Hein, co-author of “The Episcopalians,” a standard history of the church. “The American Episcopal Church is trying to set itself up as a separate denomination, although they would claim that they’re not.”

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)General Convention --Gen. Con. 2012Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)Same-sex blessings* TheologyEcclesiology

Posted July 11, 2012 at 1:28 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. David Hein wrote:

A well-balanced article, it—rather unusually—puts the TEC actions in the fuller context of Anglican Communion, ecumenical relations, and other mainline U.S. denominations.

July 11, 2:47 pm | [comment link]
2. BlueOntario wrote:

In years past (like 40ish) the Christian Science Monitor was my “go to” newspaper. It seemed to my youthful mind to be unsurpassed in coverage of any subject. It’s good to see that it can still do its work well.

Referencing the article, I wonder if this will in any way change the relationship between the UMC and TEc. One would hope that Methodists would raise the issue in ecumenical talks and bring both sides to task, but I’m sure that won’t work in polite company such as there is. Perhaps in four years when the UMs meet and duke it out once again.

July 11, 6:35 pm | [comment link]
3. Cennydd13 wrote:

I think one would have to be a fool to think that TEC’s latest action wouldn’t hurt their relationship with the rest of the Anglican Communion.  How could it not hurt?

July 11, 6:57 pm | [comment link]
4. MichaelA wrote:

“The issue that’s causing the [Episcopal Church’s decline] is not the inclusion of gay and lesbian people,” Ms. Russell says. “The problem has been the fighting about it…. We’ll have great energy for proclaiming the Good News to everyone once we’ve put these inclusion wars behind us.”

Extraordinary how Susan Russell mimics the classic joke: “The problem is not falling ten stories, the problem is the sudden stop at the end!”  What is the point in mocking these people when they do it so well themselves…?

July 12, 3:16 am | [comment link]
5. MichaelA wrote:

“Others, however, aren’t convinced that growing consensus around same-sex issues signals a brighter future. The Episcopal Church has lost 44 percent of its members since 1965, Mr. Hein notes, even though the US population has been growing during that period. He expects decline to continue.

“They’re losing 1,000 members a week,” Hein says. “The Episcopal Church has now positioned itself way out there on the edge with the United Church of Christ, which is extremely liberal and also losing members”.”

TEC has lost 44% of members since 1965 - that is almost exactly the year when TEC gave up trying to discipline Bishop James Pike for his public attacks on the fundamental beliefs of Christianity.  A church that could not muster the collective will to discipline an openly heretical bishop (nor other open heretics like James Spong who followed shortly after) - it is no wonder TEC has suffered God’s judgment since then. 

TEC’s decline in numbers dwarfs anything seen in other mainline churches.  That is the wages of liberalism, and this General Convention is just gobbling up more of the same, like a dog returning to its vomit (Proverbs 26:11).

July 12, 3:24 am | [comment link]
6. Cennydd13 wrote:

And it’s just the beginning.

July 12, 2:45 pm | [comment link]
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