Saturday, December 08, 2007

Schism Du Jour

For regular viewers of "As the Anglican World Turns" today's vote by the Diocese of San Joaquin to abandon the faith and order of the Episcopal Church comes as no surprise. It is the "Long Expected Schism" orchestrated by Bishop Schofield and others committed to splitting the church they have failed to recreate in their own image.

The blogs and news are full of commentary and Kendall Harmon has done his usual efficient job of compiling links and sources ...

Here's the comment I made on his site:

It is indeed a sad day—on that score I agree with Kendall. But the crocodile tears from those who have prayed, worked, schemed and finally brought about their Long Expected Schism are a bit much. When we look back at the history of the “rending of the fabric of the Anglican Communion” the date will not be July 29, 1974 or February 11, 1989 or even November 2, 2003 ... it will be December 8, 2007 and the responsibility for the rip will lay at the feed of those who today have walked away from historic Anglicanism and embraced hysteric Schismaticism.

And it's all hardly breaking news. Here's a bit from a December 2006 blog:
...how does it work that after 30 (at least) years of living with differences it is those of us committed to continuing to live with those differences (including being in communion with those who do not accept our orders, affirm our relationships or acknowledge our vocations) who are being blamed for this ecclesial rupture orchestrated by those whose criterion for being included is being agreed with.
And here's a piece I wrote way back before General Convention 2003: What if they gave a schism and nobody came?
If schism happens ... the blame will lie not with Claiming the Blessing, the Diocese of New Hampshire, Gene Robinson or the countless GLBT Christians living out their faith journeys in the Episcopal Church. It will lie firmly at the feet of those whose will to power is greater than their willingness to embrace the other, whose commitment to crisis is greater than their faith in the Gospel and whose singular obsession with things sexual has blinded them to the Spirit's revelation via things incarnational."
So we reach the point where, sadly, "Come thou long expected Schism" is the All-the-Rage-Advent refrain again this year in reasserter-land:

Come, Thou long expected Schism
Born to set Thy people free
From our fears of queers release us
As we quest for Purity.


CANA’s strength and consolation
Hope of homophobes thou art
Dear Desire of “Network” nations
Joy of every “Windsor” heart.

Reasserters you’ll deliver
As you split the church apart
Come thou long expected schism
Let the glorious rupture start.


And so the rupture starts, but for the record, the rest of us are sticking to the original:

Come, thou long-expected Jesus
born to set thy people free
from our fears and sins release us
Let us find our rest in thee ...

And -- when the dust has settled from this shameful schism du jour -- we will get on with the work of the church: with or without those who "like a good fight."

5 comments:

Jake said...

Come thou long expected schism....

Did you make that up, or has it been around for awhile? It is quite good.

Anonymous said...

"It will tear the fabric of the communion"

I may not have the wording strictly correct, but that certainly was the meaning of the letter signed by Frank Griswold and the other primates just before November 2003.

And now it is beginning to be felt at corporate level ... it has been clear at individual level for a long time.

SUSAN RUSSELL said...

Jake ...

I made it up awhile back but yes, guilty as charged.

Binx said...

What tune would that be?

Okay, okay!

I know, I get it, but I still couldnt resist asking.

Great Hymn ;)

This may well replace "I am an Anglican" in the parallel hymnal.

Joseph P. Mathews, OSL said...

You make me smile. :)