In the odd space between the last day for receiving Standing Committee's consents on the election of Mark Lawrence as bishop of South Carolina and the beginnings of the House of Bishop's meeting at Camp Allen, there is a bit of quiet. In these few moments Fr. Jake is still silent and still missed. At the same time there are very fine reports around and about. The Daily Episcopalian is picking up on many of those.
I want to mention three: Tobias Haller's essay on the situation re Fr. Lawrence is classic Tobias, thoughtful, musing and charitable.
The Diocese of Utah has published a remarkable document "A Statement by the Deputies to General Convention 2006, Leadership, and Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Utah, March 13, 2007"
It ends, prior to its conclusion, with this very important paragraph:
"Our bishops are bound by the decisions of the General Convention of this Church. They may not, even by common covenant amongst themselves, agree to do otherwise. They may, of course, individually exercise the latitude allowed them in canons and in General Convention resolutions. But they may not covenant to act unilaterally to clarify or sidestep the processes of General Convention and to frustrate the freedom and intent of the Constitution and Canons of this Church."
This is something the whole church needs to hear. Bravo for Utah!
The last paragraph of the conclusion suggests that it is time to begin to find our friends and ask for some collective responses on the issues current in the Communion. They state there,
"We encourage our Presiding Bishop, The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori, to foster the formation of networks with Primates who are supportive of the actions and directions of The Episcopal Church. Their collective voice will assist the Communion in understanding that the issues we have spoken of in this paper have support in other provinces and are not solely expressed by many in The Episcopal Church."
In the past several weeks there have been remarkable papers and statements from other leaders in the Anglican Communion that indicate that The Episcopal Church, in its efforts to work its way towards a new vision of life together in Christ, is not alone. More on that in a later post.
And I would be amiss not to mention Susan Russell's blog entry on the outrageous statements of General Pace, which made it in the big time blogs (as if her's wasn't big enough!). Susan is a mom, among her many gifts, and her passionate blog in response to General Pace's statement should make all mothers and fathers proud, not to mention all the rest of us. Read it HERE.