... but I did get a nice note from Greg Griffith (of Stand Firm fame) in response to my inquiry about the blog-blackout on the St. Nicholas, Atwater story in Stand Firm Land. His answer to my inquiry was, in part: "I just don't see what the story is. A bishop decided not to continue funding a failing mission with an ASA of... what, about 20? I don't see where the story is ... have I missed something?"
Feel free to weigh in but, yes ... yes, I think he has. Missed something.
Meanwhile, more commentary on the San Joaquin mess by blogger "Anglocat:"
What was it Tertullian identified as the distinguishing feature of Christians even in the eyes of disapproving Roman society? "See how they love one another."
Hardly in evidence, here--I'm an experienced litigator, and have seen timing of letters and documents as a ploy, but this takes my breath away. To put it with more charity than is probably reasonable, Schofield's unrestricted warfare against the public dissenters whose conscience he claimed that he would respect--"no one is being asked to act against his conscience," after all--gravely undermines any claims that he has to act as a Christian leader.
His actions have further deepened the rancor between factions in the Church; to take but one example, The Anglican Scotist, who previously praised the "surprisingly irenic tone" of Schofield's response to the Presiding Bishop, now understandably laments that "Schofield ... made an utter fool of me." (He didn't, Scotist; you're still one of the best. Your take on this story manages to go beyond passion and to tease out the theological dangers revealed by Schofield's action).
Interestingly, the "reasserter" blogs have been silent about this; as chronicled by the tireless Father Jake, neither Kendall Harmon nor Stand Firm have addressed it--indeed, SF, as above linked, deleted a post on this story from what it called an "open thread" asking for "the most outrageous Episcopal stories of 2007," only to have a commenter declare it "[i]nteresting that not one of the revisionistas has posted on this particular thread."
Similarly, on another thread, SF cut at least 8 comments on this matter, and subsequently banned the commenter.At a minimum, the "reasserters" seem aware that this action casts them and their cause in a revealing, and unpleasing, light. And, I would argue, this profoundly unchristian course of conduct--even if you agree with Schofield that he is still entitled to exercise authority over what was, after all, founded as a mission of TEC, he's violating the standard he set for himself, and punishing the parishoners for the dissent of their vicar--and all this on Christmas Day!--is consistent with the authoritarianism and self-righteousness displayed by other prominent "reasserters."
To take an example I've quoted before, it's of a piece with Archbishop Akinola's official support for legal persecution of gays, lesbians and those who support their civil rights, and his astonishment that a gay man would dare shake his holy hand, which I would call quite literally pharisaical, except it gives the pharisees a bad rap. And the "burying the lede" by our "Worthy Opponents" (as they like to style us)? Rather like Martyn Minns's bland denial that Akinola is "an advocate of jailing gays" which was neatly bracketed--both before and after--by official written statements by Akinola advocating passage of a law which would do just that.
The plating is wearing through, revealing the base metal beneath.
Indeed. No gold rings today, kids. On this 5th Day of Christmas just more sad news from Schsim Central. DO pray for the Church!
UPDATE: Check out the story in today's Modesto Bee ...