Monday, September 24, 2007

Lions and Tigers and Rumors, OH MY!

Remember that Collect for the Day we prayed just -- what was it -- only yesterday???

Grant us, Lord, not to be anxious about earthly things, but to love things heavenly; and even now, while we are placed among things that are passing away, to hold fast to those that shall endure; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Easier said than done when the bishops are meeting and the rumors are flying.

Elizabeth Kaeton has a great overview over at Telling Secrets and I'm going to leave it at that for tonight. Tomorrow will be soon enough to contend with the fallout from this epsiode of "As the Anglican World Turns."

As for the policy on blessings in the Diocese of Los Angeles (should inquiring minds want to know and given the number of press calls and emails I've gotten I assume they do):

My understanding is that permission from the bishop for the blessing of a same-sex union is not required in the Diocese of Los Angeles as we are understood, as presbyters, to be providing pastoral care to the couple under our pastoral oversight. That's what happened at All Saints, Beverly Hills last week and that's what will happen at All Saints, Pasadena next month (and lots of other parishes inbetween.)

Should the national church, through the appropriate process of consents by both houses sitting in General Convention authorize liturgical rites for blessing then that issue will be revisited by the Bishop of Los Angeles. In the meantime, flowers are ordered, organists arranged for, best men and women suited up and life goes on -- the primates notwithstanding.

And now, boys and girls, to bed with you! No more rumors before bedtime!



Unknown said...

From (2005-03-16)

"In the statement, which was drafted by a 16-member committee that included Bishop Diocesan J. Jon Bruno of Los Angeles, the bishops also addressed the matter of same-sex unions. They pointed out that the national Episcopal Church has not authorized rites for blessing same-sex couples: however, the bishops said that they themselves would refrain from performing such blessings for the time being. Clergy in dioceses that already practice same-sex blessings will be allowed to choose whether to continue the practice."

Malcolm Boyd's blessing was in May 16, 2004, prior to this statement.
I believe Bp. Bruno has neither officiated nor given his permission since March 2005.

Muerk said...

I'm really confused. And I don't want to describe anyone as a liar, but I know some people have done that. So can someone spell if out real slow for me :)

+Bruno supposedly had this exchange:

"Bruno: You have asked whether we will continue the process of General Convention. The fact is that we have never authorized same sex unions.

NYT: it happens on the diocesan level all the time.

Bruno: Not in my diocese..."

But we know that there are blessings of same sex unions, and they are in +Bruno's diocese.

Are there ss blessings, but not 'diocesan level' blessings? Or are they blessings but not 'authorized same sex unions'?

What (in good faith) was +Bruno actually saying about same sex blessings?

Anonymous said...

Actually I think you know the simple truth of things right now. The day is coming when the party will be over, and there will indeed be the things that remain, among them your sons. You will have to come to terms with the Truth.

David said...

Perhaps muerk, this is what it all means:

For +Bruno and the clergy in his diocese, the pastoral care of their fellow Christians is more important than playing silly little political games with (stentorian tones) The Primates and the "unity at any cost" Anglophile Communion fanboys.

Jeff Martinhauk said...

Muerk -

LA has not, to my knowledge, authorized any same-sex blessings. Bruno performed one as Allan indicated, but that was prior to the bishops' agreement to refrain.

All rites in LA are developed at the parish level as Susan mentioned.


C.B. said...

muerk - It appears that there are several distinctions that are being made:

There are the "authorized rites" of the national church- such have yet to be approved.

Then there are rites that the individual bishops have approved for use in their diocese. (It is unknown whether such have been approved by which bishops.

And finally, there are blessings that individual parishes perform as part of their pastoral care to gays.

It appears that Bishop Bruno has stopped performing blessings of same sex unions and has not approved any official rites to performed or given permission to parishes to perform official rites.

What I think is confusing to the general public is what types of blessings are being performed at the pastoral level as part of pastoral care.

I think that under the circumstances that is an honest question.

Unfortunately for the body of Christ, how reasserters handle honest questions is often in a dishonest way.

RonF said...

So the Bishop of LA doesn't perform same-sex blessings and hasn't approved any official rite for the same, but he also hasn't forbidden his clergy to perform them. Would that be correct?

Muerk said...

I think +Bruno should have been clearer in his statement. I also appreciate allan's point about the 2004 blessing that +Bruno performed, that's a fair point.

David: Then I think +Bruno should have been open and upfront about what actually is happening in his diocese.

Because from my perspective it looks like +Bruno _has_ given permission for ss blessings - as part of pastoral care - but it is still "permission".

I'm still totally unprepared to call +Bruno a liar, but he has badly obfuscated the truth and I think that's a shame and it's a disservice to his office of bishop.

Muerk said...

I have just watched the video of the press conference that +Bruno spoke at (It's posted at Stand Firm).

Susan: Why would the Bishop "have to look into" the ss blessing in his diocese that happened the day before the press conference?

It makes it sound as though the blessing needs investigating.

I'm more confused than ever.