Tulsa World: Oklahoma Bishop seeks to bypass conflict

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The new spiritual leader of Oklahoma Episcopalians would rather talk about transformational ministry than about the controversy over homosexuality threatening to split the Anglican world.

The Rt. Rev. Edward J. Konieczny (pronounced con-YETCH-nee) was consecrated bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma on Sept. 15 in Oklahoma City.

In Tulsa last week for the annual meeting of the diocese at St. John's Episcopal Church, he talked about his first two months in office.

It has been a busy time.

A short time after his consecration, Konieczny attended a four-day conference in the national cathedral in Washington, D.C.

"This was a group of leaders that have a passion for transformational ministry, for building the Body of Christ," he said.

"We're focused on growing the Episcopal Church," he said, through revitalizing congregations in decline and planting new congregations.

Read the whole article.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalEpiscopal Church (TEC)TEC Bishops

24 Comments
Posted November 26, 2007 at 4:32 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Frances Scott wrote:

Nothing new here…same old party line.  We’ve just learned that our parish is “in decline” (as if this sets us apart from the rest of TEC) and we are to receive 6 visits over as many months from a diocesan representative who is going to teach us how to reach out to the community.  This will be interesting.  We may learn something; if our consultant takes the peanut butter out of his ears, he may learn something too.  We ARE reaching out to our community… of drug and alcohol addicts… and some of them are turning or returning to Jesus Christ and learning to trust Him.  They are free to take their newfound faith with them wherever they go, into whatever church denomination will receive them.  We are more interested in building the Kingdom of God than in building the kingdom of TEC.

November 26, 6:20 pm | [comment link]
2. Carolina Anglican wrote:

Interesting statements…a bit contradictory?

“I know of no (Oklahoma) congregation at this time that is dissatisfied with the position I’ve taken, or [B]at least where we’re at in the life of the church here,”[/B] he said.

later in the interview…

“We’ve seen a decline in membership,”

Again like so many in TEC he conveys a condescending attitude toward Uganda and Nigeria while disregarding the Southern Cone and others.

November 26, 6:43 pm | [comment link]
3. R S Bunker wrote:

+Edwards sounds as though he’s more concerned about constructing a new building than in making sure it rests upon a frim foundation.

RSB

November 26, 6:49 pm | [comment link]
4. Connie Sandlin wrote:

OFF TOPIC:  I nominate for this year’s/decade’s most annoying phrase:  live into

I just about barf everytime I read it.

Elves, feel free to delete, but I needed to vent!

This elf agrees with you.

November 26, 8:19 pm | [comment link]
5. Larry Morse wrote:

Exactly what does that wretched phrase mean?  Does it mean “to grow into,” “to become by incremental steps”? I can understand what “organic” when it means, “growth and change fueled by internal drives and desires,” as opposed to change caused mechanically, like the weathering of rocks. But “live into” is the same as “organic” when artists start talking about what they do, and this gives me a headache.
  I add this to “listening” as an expression to leave out for the coyotes.
LM

November 26, 8:53 pm | [comment link]
6. Ross wrote:

At the risk of continuing the off-topicness, I would add (from favorite words of the reappraising side) “tension” and any use whatsoever of “dialogue” as a verb.

And just to make sure that everyone’s ox is equally gored, for reasserters’ favorite catchphrases I’d be just as happy not to hear again I nominate “the faith once delivered” (especially when followed by “2000 years of teaching”) and the word “innovation” when used as a pejorative.

November 26, 9:01 pm | [comment link]
7. Milton wrote:

Ross, at least our catch phrase comes from Scripture!  And if you want to know when it was once delivered and Who delivered it, read the last chapter of Luke.  But “live into” sounds like maybe what mold and fungus does to its host!

November 26, 9:31 pm | [comment link]
8. Cross Mountain wrote:

I was on the vestry and in lay leadership at Ed’s last church - he is in the same mold as Colorado Bishop Rob O’Neill (his mentor)- a corporate manager type priest who in my experience was interested only in bricks and mortar and names on the roles - no spiritual leadership here.  His condescension for +++Henry Orombi hits close to home, as I am now in a Ugandan congregation and have been taught by +++Henry. ++Ed will never be half the spiritual giant that +++Henry is; but he will get a nice pension!

November 26, 9:41 pm | [comment link]
9. Mark Johnson wrote:

#8 - what’s up with all of those crosses before someone’s name?  What’s wrong with one in front of a bishop’s?  How many crosses does the Pope get in front of his?  Just curious.

November 26, 9:50 pm | [comment link]
10. Statmann wrote:

The good bishop has a challenge. The diocese lost about 5 percent of its membership from 1996 through 2002 and another 8 percent from 2002 through 2006. But with TEC it is best to follow the money. From 1996 through 2002 Plate & Pledge grew a handsome 36 percent but from 2002 through 2006 Plate & Pledge grew a meager 3 percent.  Statmann

November 26, 10:06 pm | [comment link]
11. Cross Mountain wrote:

#9 + for a priest, ++ for a bishop, +++for an archbishop

November 26, 10:11 pm | [comment link]
12. Philip Snyder wrote:

Cross Mountain (#11)
A priest signs his/her name with 1 cross after the name. A Bishop, Archbishop, Primate, or the all sign with one cross before their name.  An Archbishop, Primate and the ABC are all “just” bishops by order, but they have special jobs.  One is not consecrated or ordained Archbishop or Primate.  One is seated as Archbishop or Primate.
If you doubt this, the Cathedral Church of St. Matthew in Dallas has signed pictures of Archbishops Runcie and Carey.  They each signed their name “+ (first name) Cantuar.”  They did not sign with two or three crosses, only one.

I, for one, dislike “plus inflation.”

YBIC,
Phil Snyder

November 26, 10:18 pm | [comment link]
13. Little Cabbage wrote:

And then there were (are?) those who eschew the ‘cross’ signatures at all.  One outstanding example:  Bishop Phillips Brooks, a brilliant U.S. preacher of the Victorian Age, and a true genius. 

I wonder when this thing of ‘crosses’ before or after (or above, below?) signatures started taking hold?  Sure sounds like a stealth way for the ordained to remind laypersons just who is REALLY closer to God!  I’ve never liked this fad, finding its arrogance breath-taking and its theology questionable.  Surely ALL who are baptized in Christ should write a ‘+’ before their name!

Oh, I forgot—in TEC baptism is an OPTION.  Maybe that’s the origin of this cutesy ‘tradition’ in signatures???

November 26, 10:32 pm | [comment link]
14. Cross Mountain wrote:

thanks for clarifying the anglosemiotics for me - it’s all too, too confusing.

November 26, 10:34 pm | [comment link]
15. RalphM wrote:

“We’re focused on growing the Episcopal Church,” he said, through revitalizing congregations in decline and planting new congregations.

Even good seed will not grow in bad soil…

November 26, 10:40 pm | [comment link]
16. Wilfred wrote:

Further signature etiquette:

  Reappraising priest?

  ?Reappraising bishop

  ?$!Reappraising bishop trying to seize departing parish’s property

November 26, 11:10 pm | [comment link]
17. Br_er Rabbit wrote:

One free pass to the Laffin’ Place for Wilfred.

...on my way back to the Briar Patch,

November 27, 12:25 am | [comment link]
18. robroy wrote:

The actual tables of average Sunday attendance are available at:
http://www.episcopalchurch.org/research.htm
From this, we see that the diocese lost a whopping 14% in of ASA in the past 4 years.

November 27, 12:44 am | [comment link]
19. Katherine wrote:

I think all this cross inflation is from blogging.  It’s like text message English.  Instead of writing “Fr. Jones” the blogger writes “Jones+.”  Instead of “Bishop Jones,” it’s “+Jones,” and the Archbishop is “++Jones.”

I’ve formed the habit of just writing “Jones” unless I’m addressing the person directly in my comment, in which case I use the proper title.  Much easier, and it avoids the whole discussion of whether the person in question is viewed by the individual commenter as valid or out of his mind!

November 27, 1:20 am | [comment link]
20. ann r wrote:

I used to think the cross afterward meant dead, as in deceased.  I’ve certainly seen it used that way. (sorry, off topic)

November 27, 2:22 am | [comment link]
21. Kyle Potter wrote:

It makes some sense in the course of e-conversations to use it when talking about the incumbent of a diocese, whose name is not actually relevant, e.g. +Oxon or +Dallas. When we’re talking about episcopal personages, are we really afraid that we’ll forget we’re talking about a bishop? Heaven forbid! It reminds me of those conversations I used to have about culture with some Christians, who would cut me off in mid-sentence if I failed to use the correct honorific in reference to a cult hero who—

“You mean Doctor Dobson, don’t you?”

Oh, and as a priest friend asked a few months ago, how will we refer to the Patriarch of the West?

++++Ratzinger?
++++Benedict? 
+ˆ4 B16?

November 27, 6:01 am | [comment link]
22. ReinertJ wrote:

Cross Inflation!  It must be an American thing.  I don’t think I have ever seen any Australian Priest sign their name with a cross.  Bishops, yes, and usually only one even archbishops.  I think it is an indication that “Perth” is not really +Roger’s family name.  I too have seen the cross after a name to indicate death rather than ordination. 
Jon R.

November 27, 6:35 am | [comment link]
23. Chris Molter wrote:

Should we put an “X” instead of a “+” before the Primus of Scotland’s name? wink

November 27, 9:56 am | [comment link]
24. Connie Sandlin wrote:

I think that the whole Episcopal / Anglican Church would be much better off if those who are supposed to be leaders who defend the Faith would LIVE UP TO their responsibilities instead of trying to “live into” (barf) any kind of tension. 

Connie, only mildly repentant for hijacking this thread grin

November 27, 11:11 am | [comment link]
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