Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Bumper Sticker Du Jour


Available online here ... along with some other zippy Episcopal Stuff.

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Are you sure?

The average evangelical -- not to mention the Archbishop of Nigeria -- is feeling extremely unwelcome in the Episcopal church at the moment, and quite welcome in the Anglican church

I think you need to amend your bumper sticker.

My suggested revision:

"So Long as You Agree with Us
The Episcopal Church Welcomes You

If You Agree With Them
Then you would be better to go Anglican"

It would at least be real then.

Jeff Martinhauk said...

I think after B033 we don't know who agrees with whom in TEC.

I don't think it was a reflection of inclusive theology, that's for sure.

revsusan said...

anonymous ... so try this on:

there is an ontological difference between feeling unwelcome because you're disagreed with and BEING unwelcome because of who you are.

In the Episcopal Church the "average evangelical" is free to hold a minority theological position and make an informed choice as to whether or not it is a spiritual community that "fits" for him/her.

In -- oh, let's just pick Nigeria -- the "average gay or lesbian person" is in jail if they speak about ... much less act upon ... their sexual orientation.

Big dif

Renee in Ohio said...

I just came back here to post something else, but got distracted by something shiny. Or rather, something rainbow-y. It was cool to come here and see the bumper sticker Demetrius designed. Thanks!

Renee in Ohio said...

And here's the "something else" I meant to post...

FYI--after getting sidetracked for a while by that interview Katharine Jefferts Schori did on NPR, I've finally transcribed another piece of the Voices of Witness video by Claiming the Blessing.

inked said...

You should try Missouri's

Deep in Faith ... Deep in Humanity

There was a third deep they left out! But it would have spoiled the double entedre, I suppose.

Anonymous said...

Susan

There is far more evidence to suggest that human beings are created inherently selfish

"So long as you are selfish
The Episcopal Church Welcomes You"

If you want to be redeemed from your selfishness to a new life
Try the Anglicans"

I wouldn't go for it myself, but if you are insistent on innate attributes being welcomed I suppose it is OK!!

Renee in Ohio said...

"So long as you are selfish
The Episcopal Church Welcomes You"
--
Funny. I just finished transcribing part of Katharine Jefferts Schori's interview with Diane Rehm, in which she talked about the Millennium Development Goals. Before she got into those details, she said...

I think the work around Millennium Development Goals has been a politically motivated initiative in the large sense of what that word "politics" means. I understand it as the art of living together in community. We are called to transform the world around us as Christians, into something that looks more like the reign of God. And the last time I checked, I don't think the hungry are all being fed, I don't think the ill people are all being provided with healthcare. We have work to do.

Hearing her speak makes me proud to be an Episcopalian. Every time I hear her speak, I hear a clear message about faith in action meaning things like feeing the hungry and healing the sick. The word "selfish" does not spring to mind.

But I guess that's because I don't spend all my time worrying about other people's loving, monogamous relationships.

Anonymous said...

I .. I ... we... I ... I ... we

What is the gospel about again?

aspirant said...

"I .. I ... we... I ... I ... we

What is the gospel about again?"

Come on. How about the REAL content of the message:

the hungry
the ill
healthcare
the reign of God

Why are you so quick to attack the new PB-elect with such vitriol? OK, so you disagree with some of her politics. We get it. Does that mean, then, that you stop looking for Christ who dwells within her?

Is that really the direction in which you want TEC to go? Blind hatred? Cynicism? Do you really think you can say WITHOUT QUESTION that your knowledge and wisdom surpasses that of those with whom you disagree?

tony said...

This is from the blog of Leander Harding. I post it here for your comments.


Do I understand?

More Reflections On General Convention 2006
Do I understand what you are saying?
An Open Letter to Bishops and Delegates Who Participated In General Convention 2006

I was able to observe the House of Bishops and House of Deputies briefly first hand during the convention and I have followed closely the proceedings on the internet and through the media. Below are some conclusions I have developed as a result of my observation both by following the official deliberations and through more informal conversations. I wonder if I have heard correctly, and I welcome remarks from bishops and delegates about whether I have an accurate take on the center of opinion in the national leadership of The Episcopal Church. What follows are statements that I believe reflect the consensus of opinion in the national leadership of The Episcopal Church, particularly as reflected in the General Convention that just met in Columbus, Ohio. Do I understand correctly? As I hear it you are saying that:

1. God is the author of same-sex attraction by an act of special providence that includes biological and social-psychological secondary causes. Because we know through reports of the spiritual experience of same-sex attracted people that God is the primary author of these experiences, inquiry into the relative contributions of nature and nurture to same-sex attraction is of no significance for the church’s moral teaching or pastoral care.
2. This recognition of the source of same-sex attraction in the direct intention of God means that the categories of “Gay” and “Lesbian” are part of God’s order of creation in the same way as male and female.
3. Bisexuality is also created by God as an act of special providence through a combination of biological and social-psychological secondary causes.
4. It is likewise irrelevant to the church’s moral and pastoral response to this phenomenon to inquire into the relative contributions of nature and nurture in the development of this sexual orientation.
5. The recognition of the source of same-sex desire in the original intention of God for the creation and humanity is a revelation of the Holy Spirit in our time.
6. The General Conventions of 2003 and 2006 are witnesses to this new revelation of the Holy Spirit.
7. The Holy Spirit has not yet revealed what amendments in the church’s received sexual ethic will be necessary to accommodate bisexual and transgendered people but we can expect further leading by the Holy Spirit in this regard. In the meantime such persons should be considered fit candidates for Holy Orders.
8. Certainty in moral or theological judgments which is based on an authoritative reading of a text whether that is the text of the Bible or any other part of the dogmatic tradition of the church is inherently an example of over-reaching.
9. Contemporary reports of personal spiritual experience by same-sex attracted people and their supporters about the spiritual blessedness of same-sex relationships provide a basis for moral and theological certainty on this question which the scriptures and the traditional teaching of the church cannot by virtue of the nature of the documents provide.
10. Christians who feel bound by the scriptures should understand that the fact that there are different interpretations of the scriptures which touch on same-sex attraction means that no single interpretation can possibly be authoritative.
11. Since the scriptures cannot possibly be authoritative on this issue and since self-reported spiritual experience provides the only reliable certainty on the subject, any objections to same-sex blessings on the basis of scripture are irrelevant a priori.
12. Exegetical discussion of specific texts which seem to forbid blessing same-sex erotic behavior can only be for the benefit of quieting the consciences of people who take the bible literally. At the end of the day the inherent uncertainty of the scriptures must give way before the certainty of the personal spiritual experience of the same-sex attracted and their supporters and the felt experience of the presence of the Holy Spirit in two succeeding General Conventions.
13. The most meaningful dialogue in which the church can engage is dialogue that allows same-sex attracted people and their supporters to share their perceptions of the ways in which God has blessed individuals and specific Christian communities through covenanted same-sex relationships. Actual argument about scripture or the teaching tradition of the church or the state of the scientific question could never produce any legitimate objections to the new thing the Holy Spirit is doing.
14. The experience of people who describe themselves as having been cured or freed from same-sex attraction is irrelevant and the church should not give such people a serious hearing. They either were never really same-sex attracted to begin with or are deluded about their claim to be freed or cured. The personal religious experiences of such people are not of the same quality and reliability as the experiences of the same-sex attracted in the church. These experiences are not to be seen as legitimate experiences of the power of the Holy Spirit in spite of all claims to the contrary. Likewise scientific reporting of the overcoming of same sex attraction is deeply suspect as ideologically tainted and can with confidence be dismissed without a serious reading.
15. Same-sex attraction and same-sex relationships should be recommended to our children as entirely equal to and as preferable as marriage between a man and woman. If any young person feels any same-sex attraction it is by God’s express intention and not to act upon it is to dishonor God. To discourage young people to act upon same-sex attraction is to dishonor God’s intention in the creation. The question is not whether young people should act on their same-sex attractions but when and under what circumstances. Young people who are experiencing same-sex attraction can be helped by being mentored by older same-sex attracted adults and the church should be proactive in facilitating these relationships.
16. It is wrong for the Episcopal Church to dictate to any other province of the Anglican Church what its policy on same-sex relationships should be.
17. It is wrong for any other province of the Anglican Communion to interfere with the leading of the Holy Spirit in this province. What the Holy Spirit demands at any particular time must be determined locally.
18. What the Holy Spirit is demanding must be determined provincially. Those dioceses which are members of the Episcopal Church and which resist the new teaching cannot legitimately be thought to be led by the Holy Spirit and must be resisted with all the canonical and legal means available.
19. A variety of interpretations of scripture can be tolerated in the church. The canons of the church especially with regard to the territorial integrity of Episcopal jurisdiction allow for no variation in interpretation.
20. The proposal of the Archbishop of Canterbury for a new Anglican covenant and for churches to choose constituent or associate status in the communion represents a dire threat to capacity of the church to respond to the leading of the Holy Spirit. It represents the prospect of a quenching of the Spirit.
21. The General Convention of the Episcopal Church has been uniquely privileged to hear from the Holy Spirit in a way that has been denied to the rest of world wide Anglicanism, The Roman Catholic Church, The Orthodox Churches and Protestant Evangelicalism. The Episcopal Church must at all costs maintain its witness to the unique agency of the Holy Spirit in its midst. Those who oppose the new teaching are enemies of the Holy Spirit who are making an idol of the past at the expense of the future to which God is calling us.

These numbered observations above are my take on what the dominant party in the leadership of The Episcopal Church is saying. If I have not got it right I would like to know.

The Rev. Leander S. Harding, Ph.D.
July 4, 2006

RudigerVT said...

Tony, et al. Your pimping for Leander Harding shows impressive loyalty. But his disingenous (or just ignorant) essay brings nothing substantive or new to this blog. If you really need to have people comment on it, then you've not been paying attention, and that really doesn't merit further attention, from me at least.

John Gibson said...

Tony, go over to the other thread and introduce yourself to Milton. Evidently the two of you share a fondness for this Harding clown.

Nothing could demonstrate more clearly than the posts on this blog have for the past few weeks the utter futility of any attempt at "reconciliation" or "dialogue". They're not going to be "reconciled" to anything short of driving us back into the closet and we're not going. The two sides are shouting past each other - shouting the same things they've been shouting for thirty years. This Church and perhaps the Christian faith is utterly dysfunctional and the two sides should go their separate ways and the sooner the better.

John Gibson said...

But I can't resist commenting on this particular gem:

"14. The experience of people who describe themselves as having been cured or freed from same-sex attraction is irrelevant and the church should not give such people a serious hearing. They either were never really same-sex attracted to begin with or are deluded about their claim to be freed or cured. "

I'd say that sums it up pretty well! Although my opinion may be colored by my own experience, which is I hear most often from people who claim to have been "freed from the homosexual lifestyle by Jesus" either as they're trying to get into my pants or after they have just succeeded.

revsusan said...

once again ... if inquiring minds truly want to know what "we" think/believe/profess then read what we write/preach/witness.

and tony, if you want to post articles "for comment" feel free to get your own blog. If you need help setting one up email me directly and I'll be happy to walk you through the process ... it's really very easy. Honest.

Jeff Martinhauk said...

I think the simple answer to Tony's post is yes, the author has it quite wrong.

Catherine + said...

Akinola isn't a member of the Episcopal Church USA, he's a member of the Anglican Communion of which we are a part regardless of all the attacks with various implements to cut us out.

Hugo said...

It's a great sticker, Susan. It will be on my wall in my office soon.

Gobo said...

Hi All,

I used to be a member of ECUSA before I left not long after GC2003 because as a traditional Christian I was told more or less by the progressives that I had three options: 1) Join the progressive position, 2) keep my mouth shut and support it by consent by silence, or 3) get out of the church.

From that point on I felt that the "welcome" sign should come down as a large number of the parishes have become polarized one way or the other.

In retrospect however, I appreciate the honesty of the progressives as it helped me make a decision which led me to leave ECUSA for the Catholic Church. Otherwise I might be like so many others being strung along by the Network waiting the next whatever.

As for GC2006, I think ECUSA has made a choice and that choice must be respected. Those of us who could not go along with those decision should leave and let those left get on with whatever mission they feel they have in the world.

John Gibson said...

"I appreciate the honesty of the progressives as it helped me make a decision which led me to leave ECUSA for the Catholic Church."

I'm glad you found a spiritual home more suited to your own beliefs. BTW, what's the Roman stand on differences of opinion with the Pope these days?

Jeff Martinhauk said...

Gobo -

I am interested to know who told you of these three choices.

I can only speak for my position, which is that whoever you are and wherever you find yourself on your journey of faith, you are welcome here.

I believe earnestly that there is room for everyone at the table. I do not agree with the conservative theology. I believe it has seriously contradictions with the Gospel message. However, I do not believe that should keep conservatives from the church or from the table, and I believe there is a place for conservative parishes in the Episcopal church because I understand that the human experience covers a broad range of positions, not all of which can be encapsulated in my point of view. The church needs to embrace them all.

I am sorry you did not experience that. I do not believe it is the intent of the leadership of the Episcopal church to turn anyone away. I do, however, find myself wondering about that same question when asked about the leadership of the Anglican Communion (and certainly of the Roman church).

Anonymous said...

I think after reviewing the comments above -- pimping - disingenious -- susan's comment to tony to go away - etc -- I think the anonymous comment near the beginning had it right.

"So Long as You Agree with Us
The Episcopal Church Welcomes You

If You Agree With Them
Then you would be better to go Anglican"

revsusan said...

anonymous ... once again ... at the risk of appearing to be defensive ... nobody is asking anybody to "go away." My invitation to tony was to continue to post -- his own comments, ideas, reflections. My other invitation was that if he's interested in posting OTHER people's articles for comment then he avail himself of the free-market-blogosphere and set up his own blog for that purpose.

And let's not leave unsaid the fact that what ever ya'll call us we continue to call OURSELVES "Anglican" and will continue so do do -- as we believe the actions of this Episcopal Church are not only Gospel obedient but Anglican "compliant" ... if one refers to the spirit of Anglican comprehensiveness inherited down through the ages and not the sola scriptura neo-fundamentalist nonsense masquerading as "orthodoxy."

"Are we still Anglican" someone asked me at the door one recent Sunday after church.

"Of COURSE we're still Anglican," I said "-- no matter what the Bishop of Nigeria thinks. Don't forget -- we're the church that still thinks we're catholic ... regardless of what the Bishop of Rome thinks!"

Anonymous said...

Looks like David Virtue reads your blog --and likes my suggested alternative

"So Long as You Agree with Us
The Episcopal Church Welcomes You

If You Agree With Them
Then you would be better to go Anglican"

http://www.virtueonline.org/portal/modules/news/article.php?storyid=4425

Strange isn't it the way so many people don't feel that the Episcopal church welcomes them at all -- when you find it so "inclusive"

Eve said...

Rev. Susan writes: "there is an ontological difference between feeling unwelcome because you're disagreed with and BEING unwelcome because of who you are." It's unfortunate that homosexuals view their sexuality as the main "who" of "who they are."
Renee: "But I guess that's because I don't spend all my time worrying about other people's loving, monogamous relationships." Please, tell me how a "B" of the GLBT crowd is monogamous.
Aspirant: "Does that mean, then, that you stop looking for Christ who dwells within her?" Maybe some don't see the "Christ that dwells within her." I've always heard that by their fruits, you shall know them. I do not see any evidence that KJS is a Christian by her "fruits." Fortunately it is not up to us to decide whether or not she is a Christian; I can only say that I would not want a car mechanic who does not seem to agree with anything that my owner's manual says.

Eve said...

And here is the real bumper sticker, though not as "zippy" as some may like, it's closer to the truth:

"The Episcopal Church Welcomes You
As Long as You Don't Believe in Sin"