Thursday, October 22, 2009


[Press release from Integrity re: the Vatican Welcome Mat statement earlier this week.]

October 22, 2009
For Immediate Release

LOS ANGELES, CA--The recent announcement that the Vatican would set up a special canonical structure to accept disaffected Anglicans, choosing to leave over the inclusion of women and the LGBT faithful, is viewed by Integrity as another sad indicator of the church hierarchy’s misguided commitment to staying on the wrong side of history.

"There is some clarity in all of this, however," said Integrity President David Norgard. "Anglicans will now have a clear choice: a church that welcomes all or a church that excludes some."
"It is also ironic that this announcement comes just days after the Vatican unveiled plans for an exhibit honoring Galileo--who was condemned by the church 400 years ago," said Norgard. "Let us hope for the sake of the gospel we share, that our Roman Catholic brothers and sisters don’t have to wait 400 years for their church to get on the right side of history on the full inclusion of women and the LGBT baptized in their work and witness."

Integrity will continue to work for the full inclusion of all the baptized in all the sacraments within the Episcopal Church and to offer the good news of congregations and dioceses whose welcome to all is growing the church.

"God is not finished with the Episcopal Church yet. But we are deeply grateful to be part of a church working toward full inclusion.”


Brad Evans said...

Your church has shrunk from 3.5 to 2.25 million in the past thirty years, the median age is 56, your birthrate is below replacement, about one fourth of the children you do have leave after confirmation and return only for weddings and funerals; whose on the wrong side of history?
As an atheist, I'm impressed by your powers of belief but you're beginning to look delusional. You're also being really bitchy, which may or may not have to do with the disproportionately large numbers of gays in your clergy.
"On the wrong side of history" sounds more like a piece of driftwood than people appealing to reason and observable fact. Even I, an atheist, know that religion is supposed to be more than political polls.
Absolutely pathetic.

uffda51 said...

Brad, the churches with the highest growth rates tend to believe that humans rode on saddles on the backs of dinosaurs. They feel that there is no reason to be concerned about global warming since the saved will all be “raptured” out of here soon enough.

The current Pope had to ask for (and receive) immunity from prosecution from the Bush administration. There hasn’t been a headline about a Catholic priest scandal since . . . last Friday (a five year affair that produced a child).
And these are the guys who should council young couples on marriage?

Evangelical “family values” politicians belonging to “The Family” of “C Street” fame have supported some of the worst despots in history. The Mormons, with their deplorable history on civil rights and polygamy, want to tell us who can get married, and enshrine it in our constitutions.

In an overpopulated world already willing to fight wars over diminishing resources a high birth rate is hardly a sign of being on the right side of history. And you want to talk about reason and observable fact, and who is delusional? Really?

I’m not sure how working toward full inclusion can be seen as “bitchy” but thanks for providing an opportunity for me to realize how proud I am of my church.

Mitchell said...

I think that the Roman Catholic Church did the right thing.


Mitchell -- I think I'm not surprised you think that! :)

MarkBrunson said...

I think they did, too, Mitchell.

You want to get them all in one place.

Unknown said...

I think the Romans did the right thing, too. I hope "disaffected" Anglicans and Episcopalians take them up on their offer. I can't speak for the CofE, but I think the Episcopal Church has already wasted too much time trying to keep a bunch of people who want to leave from leaving. They're welcome to go, provided they don't steal Church property.

Christopher Trottier said...

I'm going to have to go with Brad on this one. I'm not an atheist, but a disaffected Anglican who believes in equal rights for all.

The problem with The Episcopal Church is that it's irrelevant. The numbers clearly prove it. Your membership has shrunk, and in 20 years all that nifty church property is going to be auctioned off anyway.

I left the Anglican church not because of "the gays" -- that's ultimately reconciliable. I left because the Anglican church doesn't believe in anything anymore. I mean, isn't the point of having a faith to have a faith?

Rather, Anglicans would rather sit around discuss climate change -- seemingly oblivious to the idea that there are better funded organizations, with better PR, doing the same thing in more innovative ways. If I wanted to join a political club, I'd do it.

The Anglican church is irrelevant because they're serving the needs of a tiny community that's going to die off while young people, such as myself, are unable to get pastoral care. And that's sad because I actually like the Anglican liturgical tradition.

My fiancee is Buddhist, but we thought it was important to have a Christian wedding. You would think I'd want to get married in an Anglican church since they're so "welcoming", right? But no, we're getting married in a traditional Mennonite church because we feel the ceremony would stand for something.

Finally, on the matter of gays and lesbians. If you're gay, sure it's nice to have a hobby church to go to every now and then. But why bother when there are so many organizations that do this better? Unitarians have been accepting of gays for a long, long time. The Metropolitan Community has -- at its basis -- the welcoming of gays and lesbians as a key theological point. If you want the bells and whistles, why not get yourself to an Old Catholic Church? At least those churches believe something.

uffda51 said...

Christopher, I can't speak to the Anglican church in your locale or why you couldn't get pastoral care. But I do know that congregations of the same denomination can vary widely. Ours is planning a massive building project so that we can serve more people in our community. I don't what your experiences have been but hobbyists who believe in nothing is a wildly inaccurate description of the priests and parishioners at our church.