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Old 07-17-2003, 01:19 AM   #1
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Gay priest elected Bishop, but.....

The Rev. Gene Robinson was last month elected Bishop by the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire. What makes his election noteworthy is that he is the first openly gay person to be made Bishop in the Episcopal Church. (My minister tells me there have been countless gay Episcopal Bishops, but none that have made a declaration of their sexual orientation while serving).

There is one catch to Robinson's election: An archaic (and, frankly, bizarre) rule within the Episcopal Convention which states that if the election of a Bishop occurs within 120 days of the General Convention, the governing houses of the Convention have to approve the election. Robinson was elected Bishop just over a month ago (i.e. June 7). The Episcopal General Convention takes place in Minneapolis July 30 - August 8. Hence, Robinson's election must be ratified at the convention. (Someone at my church mentioned that the 120 day rule dates back to olden times when it took convention delegates up to 120 days to reach convention by horse ).

One of the things that I truly like about my church is that it has been rather progressive when it comes to social issues and matters pertaining to sexual orientation. More than one openly gay couple are members of my parish and a good proportion of our gay parishioners are quite active in leadership.

The Episcopal Church is, as far as I know, the most progressive of the mainline Protestant churches in terms of gay membership/leadership. I like that. (The Unitarian Universalist Church may be more progressive, but is generally not categorized as "mainline Protestant").

However, the Episcopal Church as a whole is much like any other mainline Protestant church in that it has its liberal and conservative factions.

From what I've heard and read, the vote on Robinson is not just like any other ratification. This vote forces the Episcopal Church to deal with the issue of openly gay clergy. It's being said that this vote is likely to create a schism in the Episcopal Church. That's a drag, but I say let it happen. The Convention should be interesting, anyway. Stay tuned.

Detailed info:

News story about the June election in New Hampshire, which talks about the conservatives who oppose Robinson's election:

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Old 07-17-2003, 05:31 AM   #2
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Sort of related, but not...

Gay Activists Storm Meeting Of Church Leaders
by Peter Moore Newscenter
London Bureau

Posted: July 13, 2003 12:01 a.m. ET

(London) Gay activists, led by OutRage's Peter Tatchell took over the general assembly of the Church of England on Saturday.

The two top leaders of the faith, the archbishops of Canterbury and York remained in their seats on the dias as Tatchell launched into a 30 minutes denouncement of what Tatchell called homophobia in the Anglican faith. Other church leaders stormed off the stage, imploring to the two Archbishops to leave the hall with them.

Williams listened off stage as Tatchell chastised him for "betraying his own principles and betraying the gay community" by pressuring openly gay canon, Jeffrey John, to resign as Bishop of Reading. (story)

"He is appeasing homophobes within the Anglican church", said Tatchell.

"A brave man betrays his friends with a sword, a coward does it with a kiss.

"The Archbishop of Canterbury has kissed the ring of ecclesiastical bigots like the Archbishop of Nigeria. He is allowing the church's agenda to be dictated by the voices of unreason and intolerance.

"Dr Williams is colluding with Anglicans who preach a gospel of prejudice and discrimination.

The tirade was greeting with applause from about half the delegates to the synod. The other half walked out, an indication of how widespread the differences are between liberals and conservatives within the church.

At one point Tatchell told the assembly that according to the book of Leviticus it was their duty to put him to death and he challenged them to do so.

The OutRage protesters left of their own accord after half an hour , just as police officers arrived on the scene. There were no arrests.


Quite a mess, but I'd pose the question as to what the purpose of "unity" is anyway? I guess, theoretically speaking, it sounds all warm and fuzzy on paper, but the fact of the matter is that we will all never agree, so why should we be forced to interact with each other?


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Old 07-17-2003, 10:00 AM   #3
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Quite a mess, but I'd pose the question as to what the purpose of "unity" is anyway? I guess, theoretically speaking, it sounds all warm and fuzzy on paper, but the fact of the matter is that we will all never agree, so why should we be forced to interact with each other?
"We're one, but we're not the same."

I think true unity would not be forced. That's why I think the idea of P.C. is good, but it's gone too far, it means nothing anymore. It's a band-aid.

Unity is something we should all strive for. I don't think we'll ever achieve this while here on Earth, but the closer we get the closer we'll get to having peace. If we give up we might as well go to a life of segregation between race, religion, and politics and spend the rest of our lives fighting amongst each other.
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