It is patently unjust to everyone, including partnered gay and lesbian people, to keep on ordaining them and blessing their unions without providing a theological rationale for changing the church's teaching.Episcopal Cafe has some commentary going on you might want to check out under the title "Have we not 'done the theology' or not owned what we've done?" Which of course I thought was a very good question. And so -- of course -- I put in my two cents:
My first response is a clarifying question: Is one of the pieces of the theology we haven't done "To Set Our Hope on Christ" -- the theological and biblical apologetic we took to the ACC in Nottingham in 2005?
Or the Claiming the Blessing Theology Statement published in 2002?
Or Tobias Haller's "Reasonable and Holy"?
Or the theological resources published by the Chicago Consultation?
Or is Bishop Whalon referring to the fact that the House of Bishops' Theology Committee has pretty much steadfastly refused to do the work it's been charged by the church to accomplish?
If that's the case, then I have a follow up question: Is the only theology that counts the theology that's done by bishops?
The truth is we HAVE "done the theology" -- what we haven't done is overcome the objections of those who insist we haven't done the theology because there isn't enough theology in Christendom to convince those with sole possession of the Absolute Truth that it's possible to come to different conclusions on these issues and still be part of the same Body of Christ.
In point of fact, there are still those who maintain we haven't "done the theology" on women's ordination either. And as my rector Ed Bacon famously said, "I'm so glad Mary didn't wait for the formulation of a Doctrine of the Incarnation before she said 'Yes' to God."
I'm all for doing theology. The more "faith seeking understanding" the better as far as I'm concerned.
But when our theological reflection becomes more important than our mission to proclaim the Good News of God's abundant love then I think we need to think long and hard about whether we're not doing the Peter thing and trying to build a booth to sit up on the mountain and theologize rather than get down on the ground and evangelize.