The Bishop of Upper South Carolina’s Pastoral Letter for Advent 2012

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Our scriptures call us to righteousness, fullness of faith, to love for one another and just behavior toward the poor, the needy and the oppressed. They call us to watch for signs of the kingdom of God, keeping our hearts free from the weight of "dissipation, and drunkenness and the worries of this life" so that we will be alert and ready to stand before the Son of Man.

So we yearn for our lives to reflect the image of God implanted within us. And we strive to put on this "armor of light."

This Advent finds South Carolina Episcopalians with an open wound, our armor pierced by our inability across diocesan boundaries to navigate the challenge of living and staying together in disagreement. The disassociation of the Diocese of South Carolina from The Episcopal Church has formalized a long-developing schism over matters of both theology and governance.

The questions about whether they can legally do what they have done are not ours to answer. The questions of who is the more to blame are not ours to answer. As I said earlier, temptations to choose those things which may do us or others harm are ever with us and these temptations have been freely engaged across the church from both sides in this tragic fracture. If we are honest with ourselves, we will admit that not a single one of us is ever free from these temptations and guilt for succumbing to them.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC BishopsTEC ConflictsTEC Conflicts: South Carolina* South Carolina* TheologyPastoral Theology

4 Comments
Posted December 4, 2012 at 6:15 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Statmann wrote:

It may be necessary for +Waldo to consider a March to the Sea.  What a different response to the same State Supreme Court rulung.  Is it the water?  Is ot genetic?  Statmann

December 4, 12:39 pm | [comment link]
2. Ralph wrote:

Water? Genetic? Some other possibilities:
1. Ineffective discernment committees for aspirants.
2. Inadequate spiritual formation in seminary, or elsewhere.
3. Teaching Holy Scripture by “survey” courses that talk about the Bible, rather than profound reading with understanding.

I wonder if he can provide a Bible-based definition of righteousness.

How kind of Bp. Waldo to recognize that DioSC has left! Much of the rest of TEC seems to be pretending that nothing much has happened.

How kind of Bp. Waldo to offer help to the Forum Folks! If they take him up on it, he will surely enjoy their helpful and nurturing presence, e-mails, and phone calls. Surely, having them around will stabilize his diocese.

December 4, 6:04 pm | [comment link]
3. dwstroudmd+ wrote:

The persecution of the DioSC by the likes of the Bishop of Upper SC is flagrant and on-going in the EcUSA.  The refusal to adhere to the Constitution and Canons of the EcUSA is wilful from the PB on down.  The deeds done and undone by Bishop Waldo are mirrored by a HOB of similar doings and undoings.  The witness is what it is.  What whinging!  Taking responsibility would be a start - from the first error onward.  But I sha’n't hold my breath.

December 4, 6:12 pm | [comment link]
4. Pageantmaster ن [Repent Justin Welby] wrote:

I have to say, I find it very hard to understand what TEC bishops are really saying when they write.  Only when one sees their actions does one get a clearer idea.  But I shall certainly pray for an outbreak of Christian charity and obedience to Him who is the church’s foundation.

December 5, 6:33 am | [comment link]
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