Wednesday, February 22, 2006


Shrimp here: You know, everyonce in a while I'm tempted to think that I'm too hard on revisionists, then I read something like the following and I realize that, no, this is a fight against people who want to rip the church apart. We, on the other hand, believe we are fighting to save the church.

I was so thankful last year when I read the following from the head of Integrity, the gay movement in the ECUSA, Michael Hopkins, that he had wished that in the past he would of come out and said that Scripture was wrong when it spoke agaist gay sex:

“Do you have the agenda of overturning centuries of Christian teaching about homosexuality, what the Bible says about homosexuals?” Pat Buchanan once asked me incredulously in a TV interview. I said something wonderfully nuanced. I should have simply said, “Absolutely.” The Bible and the Church have both been wrong. The Holy Spirit is teaching this to us. Jesus said she would do things like this and we shouldn’t be surprised when she does.”

The following is in that vein. Read the whole thing and look at the comments section, too.

© 2006 by Maury Johnston

The "moment of truth" is fast approaching for the ECUSA, and this summer Columbus, Ohio, will have an opportunity to become as theologically significant as Nicaea or Chalcedon for American Anglicanism. One of the most bitter and divisive controversies of the last century may very well be put to rest with the embracing of an inclusive theological stance that stands unequivocally for justice and equality in Christ for the GLBT worshipping community. However, some centrists in the hierarchy of the ECUSA seem to believe that liberal theological apologists in our church should tone things down. To aggressively engage in heated controversy over doctrinal and moral issues is somehow seen by some as negatively divisive, and something to be avoided at all costs. Instead, they prefer to "kiss and make nice" and indefinitely prolong this dance of disagreement by endlessly proposing further studies and waiting periods before finally tackling the inevitable. This seems to be the essence of the most recent resolution passed by the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia in late January, 2006, where we are being implored to "continue listening to one another" in our contentious controversy regarding full GLBT acceptance (including same-sex blessings and the continuing ordination of gay and lesbian candidates) in the ECUSA. Such efforts are like trying to smooth out the ripples in a pond after a stone has been thrown into its center. We are simply expending too much energy trying to keep factions in a feigned appearance of unity when in reality we have what divorce courts so often hear as the underlying cause of most relational demises--irreconcilable differences.

What seems to be forgotten in this pressing desire to placate Canterbury's Windsor Report and the homophobic, African ecclesiastical contingency, is that the "unity" of the Church at the expense of justice for the GLBT faithful is a compromise which will temporarily apply a cosmetic veneer of congenial cooperation but can only weaken the internal integrity of the message and mission of this church.

I am writing this missive to promulgate what may be perceived by many in our ranks as a scandalous and divisive proposition: That the time for conversation and compromise is over; we have had over thirty years of discussions, dialogue, debate, conflicting biblical exegesis (as well as eisegesis), and ecclesiastical haggling over whether those within the GLBT community warrant total acceptance and inclusion as full-fledged members of the Episcopal Church with all concomitant privileges of membership in the Community of Christ, including the right to fully participate in all its sacramental rites of passage, including marriage and/or same-sex blessings. There is nothing more to be said that has not already been said or studied. It is time for "Yea" or "Nay." We are being confronted with the command which echoes down the centuries from the legendary challenge of Elijah: "Choose you this day!" The Episcopal Church has a choice set before it: To fully incorporate gays and lesbians at every level of its common life with full sacramental and liturgical equality of access to its rites and ceremonies, or to grant only a limited toleration of their presence, carefully circumscribed by a curtailment of access to matrimonial rites and privileges in order to satisfy the demands of the self-proclaimed defenders of "orthodoxy."

The ultimate irony regarding anti-gay, Anglican contingents who tout their doctrinal orthodoxy is that they are actually heretical. They have substituted an idolatrous regard for scripture as statically inerrant for a balanced view of the biblical documents as time-caught records of human striving for divine insight which should only be interpreted in the light of reason, and by the dynamic of living tradition which enables us to apply its guidelines with a sense of cultural relevance and spiritual continuity. Scripture, Reason, and Tradition: These triple pillars of Anglican theology have unfortunately been trumped by what I call the Nigerian Heresy (in honor of its most vocal and belligerent spokesperson) emanating from that infamous cabal of Third World primates who have suddenly discovered Sola Scriptura to be their theological stance of choice, even as they vociferously proclaim an adherence to apostolic Catholicity.

Read the whole thing

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