Friday, June 16, 2006

Voting with Their Feet

Matt Kennedy
AAC Press Conference: Voting with Their Feet

Canon Anderson: On average 700 people have left the Episcopal Church every week since 1965

It's 1:22 and I'm at the Nationwide Arena for the AAC daily briefing. I just met Kevin Kalleson from CT6. He's going to video today's briefing so I'll be sure and link his stuff.

E Brust+ is at the podium to open the events. He launches into his devotion. Dt 10

Since it is posted on the AAC General Convention website, I'll simply link it. Today's devotion is very good, as usual, and its better to listen to these sorts of things than to blog them....

Ugh...I’m having computer problems and I’ve had to miss a significant portion of the briefing getting unfrozen. I’ve missed report…so I’ll just make sure I get it tomorrow.

I did, however get Canon Anderson’s speech and it was awesome:

Canon Anderson:

One of the things that winds up being a point of tension are numbers and what they mean. It’s been 144 weeks since GC2003. In that time, something like 140 congregations have popped up out of ECUSA. When I talked to 815, they said their records did not show that big of a loss.

When a congregation decides they want to leave or don’t want to believe, there is always a small group who do not want to leave.

He gives an example of a congregation that experienced a split in which 80% of the congregation left the building and 20% stayed. The diocese counts this as a church that did not leave. The AAC considers it a church that has left. Both are right. There is not necessarily any malice here.

So that is why I say “Popped up out of ECUSA”. Some have not necessarily left, but popped out joined other parts of the Anglican Communion, some have joined the continuum.

Since 1965 about 35,000 a year Net, have departed. People in my own family have done this.

What to make of it?

People vote three times.

1. They vote with their lips: They say, we don’t agree. If they are not listened to..
2. They vote with their Wallet: They say we won't support you.
3. Finally they vote with their Shoes: they vote as they walk out the door.

This 35,000 a year is about 700 per week or three or so congregations.

Three lights going out every week since 1965.

And you wonder why we are in trouble?

What is the root?

WE have to go back to +Pike, someone who was willing to deny the core doctrine of the Christian faith.

We failed to discipline him.

Since then, the attitude of “make your own theology” has grown as the Church has shrunk.

The best prediction of what a person will do si what they have done. What has the other side done in the past? They have tried to silence us and keep us out of orders.

I sent 8 people through the ordination process in LA.

I sent a Hispanic woman through and she was not accepted because she believed the bible was true. They told her you are not our kind of people. So I stopped sending candidates. I won’t subject godly people to that kind of abuse.

They do not intend to let us reproduce.

It is like what the Pharaoh told the Hebrew Midwives.

The trajectory of where things are going is where our problem lies. Whether you take ECUSA’s numbers or ours, both show a trajectory of systematic decline

Will we be honest?

Will we accept WR in full, in spirit and in the letter?
Will we cooperate with the Communion?
Or will we continue to do it as we have in the past?

God only requires a moment in time to work a miracle, but as the clock runs and resolutions fall, the time is running out

You as a deputy have the opportunity to stand up for the truth of the gospel, to turn this around; to let your voice be heard.

The other side speaks of a listening process but the process they advocate is only a one way process. We must listen to them.

Why is it that Gay people who live celibate lives are never accepted and their stories are never heard?

Why is it that those who have been healed of their homosexual desires, why is it that they are not allowed to speak.

IF there is to be a listening process then all should speak and all should listen.


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