Lately, I’ve been staying away from blogging. Cooking for my family most evenings is therapeutic for me. Moreover, I attended our Kairos state board retreat this weekend. Sam Kauffman was our presenter. I missed Friday night but Saturday she presented The Outcast. What I truly loved about Sam’s biblical drama was how she made the Bible come alive supplying a fictional but certainly possible (and very real) factual background to the woman who touched the hem of Jesus’ garment that was entirely consistent with the Bible and what Jewish society would have been like back then. Of course, she then ads original music and sings in a way that brings tears to your eyes thinking on what Jesus has done for you. So, I guess, despite having an extremely tough week last week, I’ve been feeling pretty good. Almost too well to blog.
But, not too well to avoid reading what is going on. +Rowan utterly disappoints with his most recent letter. The only positives I can see is that liberal friends of mine are complaining that Rowan is using the Windsor Report to stiffle the Holy Spirit (as if the Holy Spirit was what brought about the actions of GC2003) and that he may be chastising certain folks who are trouble makers.
I think the indaba groups are not an entirely bad idea, but are probably inappropriate for this particular Lambeth conference. In my prison ministry, we use small group sharing and discussion as a major part of a program to open the residents’ hearts and minds to Christ. In the reconciliation seminars, the same is true, but with an aim also to open the hearts of others to reconciliation with others. However, in the context of Lambeth, mere emotional reconciliation will not do it. Something far more basic has to be handled first, and that is finding a way to co-exist peacefully.
Moreover, what everyone seems to be missing is that some sort of structural relief is necessary to provide conservatives some sort of safe haven within the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion. TEC was asked to provide this a number of times. They have not. The only thing that can be done is to excommunicate TEC from the Anglican Communion and recognize someone else. This is solely because of TEC’s intransigence and abuse of reconciliation.
TEC’s idea of reconciliation was personified in our past Presiding Bishop’s actions at the Primates Meeting and subsequent consecration of Bishop Robinson personally despite his acknowledgment that this later action would shatter the Anglican Communion. It is not so much that folks are heretics from a theological standpoint that is a barrier to reconciliation. It is the utter lack of respect toward conservatives both here and abroad. They think conservatives are stupid. They treat us as being stupid. This is the slight that needs to be reconciled before any peacemaking can occur. But, it will have to be acknowledged, and it just won’t be.
I still laugh inside when TEC claims it is Windsor Compliant when so many liberal websites have an avatar claiming not to be Windsor complaint with the recent complaints of Windsor stifling the Holy Spirit. They just don’t get it that same sex blessings continue apace, have not abated on iota, and have even been adopted in more places. TEC has never complied with the Windsor Report, so the border crossings don’t have to stop, in my mind.
As GAFCON and Lambeth approach, it amazes me that so many moderates bent on not rocking the boat continue to claim that “we just don’t know enough” to make some decision about structural realignment. Patience on the part of conservatives is wearing way too thin to play these sorts of games. I’ve often thought over the past years that some of the folks that left perhaps did so prematurely. I don’t think that anymore. Convincing moderates of the need for structural relief seems to me to be a waste of time at this point. What more can be said? Unless you have kept your head in the sand over the last five years, it blinks at reality not to see what is going on.