Tag Archives: schism

Day 2:Dialog = good. Schism= VERY BAD

I solicited reposes for yesterday’s article & received a variety of responses. Those people who agree with the GC77’s proposed resolutions totally open Holy Communion to the unbaptized presented me with some strong reasons why they feel this way about that topic. I’m glad to know that there are many Anglicans who can discuss Church issues without resorting to ugly name-calling & stereotyping.

The morning , via his blog, a young clergy deputy from my Diocese reminded me that the Church will go one, regardless what happens after GC77. In my heart I know that JESUS is the Head of our Church & He won’t let her whither & die.

It is human to worry. Since I love the Church so much I want her to remain intact. Schism has proven throughout the history of Christianity to hinder what each & every Christian is called to do: spread the Gospel. Schism prevents whole branches of Christianity from being Christ’s Body in the here & now. Think for a mnute, would a non-Christian see a Church embattled in schism & want to learn more about our faith? I doubt it.

It makes me nervous to hear talks of schism. Not only does the idea of a split in the Church make me ill with sadness but I’ve read numerous property disputes regarding parishes & Dioceses who have left the Church. When I read or actually hear people talk in favor of schism I just want to present them with a PowerPoint slide show of ALL the losses that dissenting parishes & dioceses have lost in terms of real property. {Sadly, some people only understand logic in terms of dollars & cents}

On the other hand, mature dialog moves the Church forward & solidifies the bond that we have an American Episcopalians. If we ake time to listen to one another, we’ll grow stronger as a Church at all levels of the hierarchy. I can worship at any church that acknowledges Jesus Christ as Lord & believes in the Trinity, but I know people who think that the Church ” belongs to ” people like me”.

Christ is the Head of our Church. And according to our Nicene Creed, we believe in ” one holy catholic apostolic Church”.

Keep the dialog coming.

Amen. Amen. Amen!


thoughts from F Scott

‎”The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.”
– F. Scott Fitzgerald

Ha, I love me some F. Scott. :O)

Anyhow, this quote really ” speaks ” to me. I get really frustrated with an ” us versus them” mentality. Yet at the same time I find myself getting wrapped up in the trappings of this unhealthy way of looking at the issues surrounding our Church & our society.

Anyone who knows me at all knows how very opinionated I am. But at the same time I do not see the merit in wanting to separate from others, especially other Christians, who think differently than me. I feel strongly that schism is bad for the Church & that all schism does is rub proverbial salt into wounds that are centuries old. I don’t agree with those who have left our Church for reasons that they perceive as ” right” . But on the other hand if they{ wither collectively or as individual family units} wish to return to our Church I welcome them with open arms. As Christians & especially American Episcopalians, we are ” One in the Spirit” & what should unite us is way more fundamentally important than what divides us.

In EfM I am learning to open my heart to other points of view & for someone as opinionated as me this is no easy task. I’m also learning fromj my participation in EfM, to be an active & appreciative listener to others whose points of view on any given subject do * not* match mine. Healthy relationships are all about communication & in order to communicate we can’t run fro those with whom we disagree. Admittedly I do not hold a lot of respect for folks who let their sociopolitical veiews separate them from the one holy catholic & apostolic Church but if said ” desserters” wish to worship & fellowship with a community again I’d welcome them back.

While I’m discussing leaving a church let me go on record as saying that the reason I felt led to leave my previos denominated was NOT NOT NOT sociapolitical. I left that community for reasons that are personal & quite painful to discuss but I can assure y’all that my reasons for leaving them were not polity-based.

Anyhow, I digress { again} We have to be able to be in conversation with those on the ” other side” of sociopolitical issues if we are going to move forward as a society. Listen, people, Listen. Amen.

Post from PA

Wow….Grandma’s party was a smashing success. I’d judge from the look on her face in my photos that she * was* surprised!  . Y’all, a small miracle occurred last night: approximately 8o people kept a big secret from one Mrs Anne.

I think I drank a wee bit too much wine, but am only * slightly* feeling that effect today. Since I’d spent last night on a couch, sleep eluded me when we finally arrived back at my uncle’s house after Grandma’s party.  Plus, after being at the Lake for a { WONDERFUL} week, I am severely sleep-deprived anyhow. But it is all good & I am very content here in Butler, PA.  

Many of Grandma’s friends & family { including myself…& I hate public speaking}  gave tributes to Grandma. It was also fun to see many of the men & women with whom she worked come to the party.

This morning I attended Mass at St Peters’ Anglican Church in Butler.  Only * one* person bothered to ask me anything about myself before the Mass started & during coffee hour in the basement NO ONE bothered to speak with me at all. :O( It was weird. The young priest preached a good sermon, but I could not help but  return to thinking about how the ACNA is shaking the foundation of the catholic, universal Church over something as minute as  the personal lives of consenting adults.  After all, if Jesus Christ is the sure foundation of our Church, than who should * really* care about what consenting adults do in the privacy of their own bedrooms.

Schism isn’t good for ANY reason.

Belle from Butler

While I am an ” adopted” Southerner , I am proud of my small-town roots. These deep roots  are in Butler County, PA  & although I have lived in Ohio I AM a Western PA gal from Butler County .

I am not ashamed of my roots. My dad’s family had  a long history there & to disrespect my hometown is not something we do. I am proud of my last name &  the community from which we hail.  

Small-town life is what you make of it & nowhere on Earth is perfect.  { I speak from experience, as I’ve been in Santa Rosa County, FL for over 11 years now & am * just* now learning to embrace my coastal Southern culture. It has been a LONG journey but I am truly blooming where I am planted}

The only thing that troubles me about visiting my hometown is that the ” Anglican” church there is one of those who subscribes to the schismatics.  Butler’s only church of the Anglican tradition voted to follow Bob Duncan into the{ unrecognized}  ACNA , so I’ll probably attend a Roman Catholic Mass with my grandmother on the Sunday I am in Butler.  Visiting that schismatic parish last year was healthy for my spiritual growth & helped me reinforce my beliefs that schisms are BAD but at the same time I don’t think I’ll return to visit that church this year. I am from Butler but I am also a proud EPISCOPALIAN.

But schisms aside, Butler is a really great place to claim as my hometown.

Holier-then-thou Quitters

Maybe I am just stubborn, but I don’t quit. Persistence is, for better or worse, one of my qualities.  On the rare occasions when I * must* give up something to which I have committed, it is very painful & { usually) due to circumstances beyond my control.  Holier-than-thou quitting is defined as  the deliberate abandonment of one’s committment based only on  selfish motives. I’m sorry, but one should not quit just because one feels that he or she  is ” holier-than-thou” & if one must quit than at least be honest about one’s reasons for quitting.

For instance, the man who split the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh is a quitter of the worst  degree: he was so self-righteous  that his schism caused pain for not only those who had the sense  to not follow him{ Bob Duncan} but to those whom he shepherds. Bob Duncan is NOT a bishop nor is he any sort of Spirit-led  leader.

I do not have any respect for grown men & women who quit halfway through a committment & it is even worse when  said quitter abandons a committment where a whole group of others are depending on him or her to follow through.

Everyone wants to quit sometimes, but those of us who have any sense of community & a responsibiliy to one’s community DO NOT QUIT!

C of E rejects ACNA

Thanks be to GOD!

According to an article in Episcopal Life Online: the See of Canterbury has rejected the request of the  ” Anglican Church of America”‘s to become a legit province within the Anglican Communion.  So, no matter what Bob Duncan & his followers might think, they are * not* a member of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

My note to the leader of the ACNA:

Sorry. Just because you don a  starched collar & a fuchsia clergy shirt does not mean you are a legit bishop!

Let me  go on record as saying  that I HATE schisms passionately. I am a proud straight ally & I support the American Episcopal Church’s  resolution   dealing with  equal rights for all who might have a call to Holy Orders in our Church. Yet at the same time, I hate what the schismatics are trying to do to the Church I love.

No matter what one feels about the  social issues which seem to get everyone’s underwear in a tizzy, schism is never a good idea. I live in one of the more conservative Dioceses in the Church & I know faithful Episcopalians with whom I disagree vehemently on the issue  about  GLBT persons who feel called to Holy Orders. Schism does not help anyone , nor does it do anything to further the mission of the Church. 

Frankly, I wish the  issue of  sexuality of priests & deacons would just disappear.   People are people & in my opinion, as long as both parties involved  are of age & consent then love is love. Clearly I am in the minority here in my Diocese & I have NO intention of backing down  nor leaving my beloved Church over this issue. My Spiritual Director  told me” There is room in the Church for everyone, even social conservatives.” {AMEN & A-men!} Since I can live with tension among folks who  disagree with me about the issue of homosexuality, I cannot fathom the mindset of the schismatics.  The Episcopal Chuch & the Anglican  branch of Christianity is so much more than  the issue of  homosexuality & I feel that folks who either feel the need to break away from TEC or become Roman Catholics based on  whether or not gay & lesbian persons are permitted to discern a call to Holy Orders are absurd.  One’s leaving any branch of Christianity  based only on  one’s feelings about any social issues  is a poor reason. {I’m an Episcopal convert & there are many reasons why I felt called to TEC, but that is fodder for at least two other blogs} I wish that  more socially conservative Christians would see that TEC is a rich, ancient Christian  tradition  with great liturgy & { more importantly} a history of SERVICE.

I am from western PA originally & when I was there last summer for a visit I attended one of these  ACNA Parishes. While they were very nice & , thanks be to God * did* use the Book of Common Prayer I could sense  that there was confusion & lack of direction  in that parish.  I was advised to go to the Mass{ & it was a ” deacon’s Mass” since they didn’t have a priest when I was there} with an open mind & heart.  During the Prayers of the People they prayed for Bob Duncan, their alleged bishop & I silently  added ” Katharine{ Jefferts-Schori} MY Presiding Bishop, Philip , my bishop, ect. It was unsettling.  My heart & prayers go to the faithful Episcopalians in the remaining parishes there who elected to stay with The Episcopal Church .

I’m Episcopalian & darn proud of my Church…for so many reasons. As for the more socially conservatives….” bless their little hearts” but I don’t agree with their positions nor do I think schism is the answer to furthering along the vision of shalom.