One of my favorite Easter hymns is about greenness. "Now the green blade riseth from the buried grain."
It goes on to talk about love coming again. It's a reminder to me of how centered our Easter images are in the Northern hemisphere. We talk about greenness and new life and life springing forth from the earth when we talk about resurrection. I often wonder what Easter images come in the Southern hemisphere, and I think that church in the south has something to teach us about that.
Posted April 10, 2012 at 8:00 am
To comment on this article: Go to Article View
The URL for this article is http://www.kendallharmon.net/t19/index.php/t19/article/42247/
1. Henry wrote:
So sad…she doesn’t even know what Easter is about. Why can’t she see that if we all accept Jesus and turn our lives over to him, the other “stuff” would be taken care of!
April 10, 9:25 am | [comment link]
2. A Senior Priest wrote:
Is she working hard at appearing post-Christian and shallow, or does she simply not care? I’m beginning to think that Mrs Schori’s job bores her.
April 10, 9:49 am | [comment link]
3. samh wrote:
Um, Japan is in the Northern Hemisphere.
April 10, 10:50 am | [comment link]
4. magnolia wrote:
come on, she doesn’t really believe there was a resurrection…the whole Bible is an allegory isn’t it? isn’t that one of her main beliefs?
April 10, 11:49 am | [comment link]
5. off2 wrote:
May God have mercy on her, and on those she has led astray.
April 10, 12:12 pm | [comment link]
6. Archer_of_the_Forest wrote:
Curious how one can have an Easter message without actually referencing Jesus in any way, shape, or form.
April 10, 12:50 pm | [comment link]
7. Teatime2 wrote:
I’m not going to presume to analyze her personal faith. However, it is clear that she cannot express herself even remotely well in theological terms. I don’t think it’s either surprising or damning that her writings reflect her advanced education and training in biology and the metaphors she finds most meaningful concern nature and creation.
Does this mean that she has lost the plot and doesn’t believe that Jesus rose from the dead? I hope not and I think not. As far as writing goes, though, it does mean she’s found her comfort level and will stay there. She tried to wax theological early in her tenure and fumbled it badly (remember the “Mother Jesus”/Julian of Norwich debacle?).
Someone should probably advise her to keep her messages very straight-forward, simple, and short. Or maybe not bother at all. Her fans will cheer no matter what she writes and her detractors will similarly pan everything. It’s meaningless, at this point, for her. But I do think that the onus is on the reader to be charitable, at the very least, for the sake of one’s own soul.
April 10, 1:00 pm | [comment link]
8. William Witt wrote:
The Presiding Bishop says exactly what she means and means exactly what she says. For Lent, she asked her listeners to think about . . . the MDGs. For Easter, she suggests they think about . . . . greenness.
There has been a consistent pattern to her sermons from day one of her tenure. Resurrection, incarnation, atonement, are abstractions, lacking in definite articles. They are about us, not about Jesus. Jesus is a way of salvation (again, no definite article) . . . for Christians. Perhaps he has something to do with . . . greenness.
Does this mean that she has lost the plot and doesn’t believe that Jesus rose from the dead? I hope not and I think not.
It would be an exercise to find evidence in her sermons that she ever had the plot.
April 10, 1:26 pm | [comment link]
9. Archer_of_the_Forest wrote:
No. 7, I completely agree. I try hard not to bash the Presiding Bishop, though that is en vogue on this and other websites. Her major problem is not her faith or lack thereof (I don’t know her personally so I try not to judge those), but the fact that she can’t preach her way out of a box. I think she should seriously hire a ghost writer because she always gets into hot water because she can’t clearly express herself theologically.
April 10, 1:27 pm | [comment link]
10. Pb wrote:
I find her writing very clear. She identifies Easter with the green movement. Remember the cows from a couple of years ago.
April 10, 1:52 pm | [comment link]
11. Sarah wrote:
RE: “She tried to wax theological early in her tenure and fumbled it badly (remember the “Mother Jesus”/Julian of Norwich debacle?).”
See—i don’t think she fumbled it at all. She said what she believed, blessedly. Griswold was always clever enough to try to disguise his beliefs with further appropriately blurry rhetoric. I’m thrilled she says what she believes—it can only do us all good.
RE: “Someone should probably advise her to keep her messages very straight-forward, simple, and short.”
But she does. i find her sermons very simple, quite short, and equally straight-forward. We can get a very clear picture of what she actually *believes* by reading what she writes—unlike, as I said above, with Griswold.
April 10, 3:11 pm | [comment link]
13. Teatime2 wrote:
Sarah, IIRC, the “Mother Jesus” remarks were shown to be orthodox, theologically speaking, but the orthodox Christians (emphasizing lower case “o”) had a hissy, anyway, because it did sound odd.
I just don’t believe it’s logical to put the PB in a small, green box (tee-hee, couldn’t resist the play on her phrase regarding Jesus). As I said, I won’t presume to analyze her beliefs but I don’t think it’s presumptuous to apply logic to the situation. She had a successful career as a biologist; there was no need to change professions but she was somehow called her to do so. She wasn’t forced to embark on a different journey and the path didn’t have to be Christian, either. So, I have a hard time believing that she doesn’t believe in the basic tenets of Christianity.
If the reports I’ve read are to be believed, she was elected to our church’s highest office by the liberal element and a conservative group who voted that way because they believed it would weaken (or even hasten the demise of) the church. And so we were presented with the least experienced of the candidates, and the one with very precious little pastoral experience as our leader.
I agree with Archer of the Forest—a ghostwriter is probably in order here. She needs help expressing herself without hard data and numbers and quantitative measures. I think that’s why she clings to the MDGs—measures of food and people served provide data. She fumbles with theology and even literature/literary devices.
April 10, 4:33 pm | [comment link]
14. Sarah wrote:
RE: “Sarah, IIRC, the “Mother Jesus” remarks were shown to be orthodox . . . “
Well, no, they weren’t. Certainly desperate moderates wheeled out an obscure quote from Julian which did not say the same thing as the PB. But the “Mother Jesus” remarks were “shown” to be clearly heretical.
RE: “So, I have a hard time believing that she doesn’t believe in the basic tenets of Christianity.”
Teatime—sermon after sermon after sermon has demonstrated *in spades* her lack of basic creedal orthodoxy. It’s fine if you don’t wish to believe that—it’s no skin off my nose. But her numerous heresies have been copiously documented and quoted by numerous professors, bishops, clergy, and lay teachers.
RE: “she was elected to our church’s highest office by the liberal element and a conservative group who voted that way because they believed it would weaken (or even hasten the demise of) the church.”
It’s been counted—approximately 3-4 conservative bishops voted for her, and those votes in no way changed the basic outcome of the vote. By the final ballot, nobody was even close, Teatime.
So—it was the libs who elected her, and I am frankly quite pleased—indeed I *was* quite pleased to learn of it, on the escalator at General Convention on my cell phone. I thanked God and He was certainly very faithful in that election. At last, we had a Presiding Bishop who wouldn’t lie about her beliefs.
And she hasn’t.
April 10, 5:12 pm | [comment link]
15. sophy0075 wrote:
<b>I’m thrilled she says what she believes—it can only do us all good.>/b>
Sarah, I agree with you to so large a number that it dwarves the US debt! May the PB and her henchmen express their true beliefs even more in the future! At this rate, druidical ceremonies by TEC at Stonehenge surely can’t be far away.
April 10, 6:40 pm | [comment link]
16. Teatime2 wrote:
If her heresies have been documented, then we need to have a church trial, yes? What with her non-pastoral and non-theological background, I only expected her to be a capable CEO, quite frankly, and she’s failed miserably at that.
As for the elections count, it’s quite common for the majority to fall in behind the front-runner if one is apparent around the third ballot or so. I don’t recall the particulars of this one nor how the moderates and conservatives voted in the end.
But if she is what was expected and even desired, then why the continued snark and hyperbole over her writings? I think that’s what puzzles me more than anything.
April 10, 11:40 pm | [comment link]
17. Ralph wrote:
#9, there’s no need for anyone to “bash” the PB here, or anywhere else. She does a perfectly good job of that, all by herself.
This Sunday, we start a series of lessons from 1 John. Do read all of it - not just the parts extracted for the lectionary. We see her described, with clarity, nearly 2000 years ago.
#8 is spot-on.
April 11, 7:07 am | [comment link]
18. samh wrote:
If her heresies have been documented, then we need to have a church trial, yes?
Correct me if I have misunderstood: Do you believe that since there really have been no heresy trials for bishops or priests in decades, that there are no heretics in TEC?
April 11, 7:15 am | [comment link]
19. Sarah wrote:
RE: “But if she is what was expected and even desired, then why the continued snark and hyperbole over her writings?”
Well, I haven’t been one to snark; I’ve written and said practically nothing at all about KJS because in a strange sense I think she’s fairly irrelevant to the wheels now grinding themselves out on TEC’s fate. She couldn’t stop what’s happening to TEC if she wanted to!
But I don’t think there should be an issue with people pointing out her 1) incompetence, 2) poor writing, 3) heresies, and 4) immature actions, etc, etc. as they find the time throughout the turgidly long, droning years of her reign. Unless you’d prefer that nobody say anything at all whenever she speaks . . .
It’s pretty much impossible of the thousands of readers of T19 for *nobody to say a word* when her truly childishly trite little “message for Easter” is posted.
I suppose after a while it gets old—she offers so many childishly trite little messages and it’s hard to comment on Every Single One. But surely the actual Easter Message?
April 11, 7:43 am | [comment link]
20. David Keller wrote:
I haven’t commented much on TEC politics since I (gratefully) left TEC last September. But this thread is reminsinent of what got TEC in the mess it is in now. People are defending the indefensable, and saying we should not be critical of KJS because somehow we are not being charatible Christians by being critical of her. Actually, the exact opposite is true. She needs to be called out for referring to the resurrection and the incarnation as if they are some sort of pagan, mother nature, green earth precepts. BTW—somebody said we shouldn’t be critical because we don’t know her. I know her. The day she was elected I knew TEC had no hope.
April 11, 9:18 am | [comment link]
21. MichaelA wrote:
From the article on T19 entitled “A Church Divided: Ruling Ends Virginia’s Episcopal Battle”:
“Harper says that in late 2006, when the seven churches decided to leave, they worked closely with the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia to do what had been done in other states — figure out a way to stay out of court and pay the diocese to stay in their church. But one day, Harper says, the negotiations fell apart. The Episcopal bishop told him, “There’s a new sheriff in town.”
That newcomer was Katharine Jefferts Schori, though she says she wouldn’t exactly call herself a “sheriff.” Jefferts Schori had just become presiding bishop of the national Episcopal Church in late 2006 when she told the Diocese of Virginia to stop negotiating.
“The reality is that the intensity of the conflict escalated after I was elected, and it was clear that several bishops were attempting to lead dioceses out of the church and it was time for a churchwide policy,” Jefferts Schori says. Within weeks, the Diocese of Virginia and the national Episcopal Church sued the Anglican churches.”
Law suits in multiple states, ruinous cost, now apparently going to higher appeal courts. No end in sight. And if TEC wins, no parishioners to put in the properties.
And this is leadership? A secular CEO who achieved this level of governance would be hauled before the board - unless the board is no more competent than the CEO. Pity the poor shareholders of the corporation…
April 12, 3:52 am | [comment link]
© 2013 Kendall S. Harmon. All rights reserved.