Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Report on Post Camp Allen News Conference

A post-HoB Press Conference concluded the work of the House of Bishops in Texas today. The panel of bishops avaiable at the press conference included Bishops Jefferts Schori, Ed Little (Northern Indiana), Chilton Knudsen (Maine), Dean Wolfe (Kansas), Stacy Sauls (Lexington), Cathy Roskam (New York), Chet Talton (Los Angeles), Mark Sisk (New York), Richard Chang (Hawaii) and Carlos Touche Porter (Bishop and Primate of Mexico)

Integrity Communication Director John Gibson was among the media "conferenced in" for the Q&A and reported a couple of interesting (to me) tidbits.
  1. When asked about whether not she had "signed" the Tanzania Communique, Bishop Jefferts Schori replied that that +Rowan asked EACH of them if they could live with the document. +Katharine said, "I will take this back to the House of Bishops."
  2. And when asked if she supported the resolutions passed by the House of Bishops she replied that as presider of the house she supported the mind of the house.
  3. The "reject the Primatial Vicar" resolution passed overwhelmingly. The "invite +Rowan" resolution was unanimous. And an effort to commend the lengthier statement to the House of Bishop's Theology Committee (AKA "kill it") failed and the statement was then adopted by the house on a standing vote.

AP's Rachel Zoll offers the first report I've seen from the Post-HoB Press Conference held at Camp Allen this afternoon. (You can read it all here ... with some quotes posted below.)

And finally, in fun-facts-to-know-and-tell about the church, I got a call from the airport from one industrious soul wanting to do some research on the plane on the way home who asked me if I could find a copy of the infamous Chapman Memo and email it to their Blackberry. I did as requested (motivated -- I'll admit -- by equal measures of obedience and curiosity) and encourage you to click on the link above check it out.

It was dated December 2003.

My, my, my!

And now, here's Rachel:

=========

[AP] Episcopal bishops did not respond to the Anglican demand about gay bishops and blessing ceremonies. However, the leaders noted that they had previously met requests not to approve another gay bishop "at great cost to many, not the least of whom are our gay and lesbian members," only to have Anglican leaders say the pledges weren't sufficient.

Still, the bishops insisted in a news conference after the meeting that their new statement was not their last word on Anglican demands. The panel of lay people and clergy who oversee the Episcopal church, the Executive Council, will soon take up the bishops' resolutions, and the House of Bishops will meet again in September.

"It is not a final decision," Jefferts Schori said.

But Canon Kendall Harmon of the Diocese of South Carolina, a leading conservative thinker, called the bishops' statement "as strong a repudiation as you can get" of Anglican demands.
"The reality is that they've rejected what's been asked," Harmon said. "They went out of their way to both push back on Rowan Williams and the primates."

The Rev. Susan Russell of the Episcopal gay advocacy group Integrity compared the bishops' statement to a "coming out process."

"This was a huge step that the American church was not willing to go back into the closet about its inclusion of gay and lesbian people in order to capitulate to those who would exclude us," Russell said.

7 comments:

Grandmère Mimi said...

My, my, Susan, that Chapman Memo was intriguing. Planning has been going on for quite a while. Their plotting sounds silly and amateurish, but they're moving right along and will continue to cause trouble.

Merseymike said...

Kepp up the good work - we really do need to hear your voice loud and clear.

And remember that Rowan Williams is 1) a coward, 2) spineless, and 3) not to be trusted!

Dennis said...

Grandmere Mimi: From their reactions,I suspect that their plans and intrigues did not take into account the HOB having a backbone and saying NO.

Hugo said...

While I disagree with merseymike's uncharitable reading of Rowan Williams, I am absolutely delighted that the HOB looks as if they aren't going to "fast from justice" this Lent.

Here we stand, we cannot do otherwise. Someone said that somewhere, right?

Gay Priest said...

Still sounds like Ms. Jefferts-Schori can't give a straight answer to any question. Come, on, this isn't the White House speaking.

Anonymous said...

To gay priest:

I think you might need to listen a little closer to Bishop Katharine's words. She's in a very delicate position right now; steering through these waters is not easy. And she has done so brilliantly.

Let those who have ears hear!

High Church Atheist said...

Steering through the waters should be easy, Anonymous, for Ms. J-S since she is an oceanographer by training.

She still is a little wet behind the ears and we'll just have to wait and see how she performs. So far, probably fair+

At least, after decades the HOB has found it has a backbone. How fascinating.