2/07/2009

Diocese of Fort Worth comes together.

The Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth convened today , seated Bishop Edwin "Ted" Gulick Jr. of Kentucky as its provisional bishop. The special convention of the Diocese was filled with all regular "feel" of a diocesan convention, complete with time waiting for votes to be tallied, and of course with much more - the reaffirmation life together as the continuing Episcopal Church presence in that place.

There will be detailed reports, but I watched the live coverage of the Convention with real appreciation. Where I was down yesterday, having tried hard to hear what the Primates were saying, I am up today in seeing church in its "regular" life. Here are some pictures grabbed from the screen. 

19 comments:

  1. Abusive spiritual parenthood has ended...it may take a while to stop twitching.

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  2. Great news. Reading about the Fort Worth convention lifted my spirits. Like you, Mark, I was dragged down by the reports from the Primates meeting.

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  3. I can't help but be struck by a blessed irony: if Fort Worth's diocesan bishop (like San Joaquin before---and soon, Quincy?) HADN'T abandoned communion, and perpetrated schism, ++KJS most likely would NEVER have gone into these dioceses, in an ecclesial capacity.

    But xSchofield and xIker "chose that day" . . . and now must live w/ the consequences. (Which, for faithful Episcopalians, is NEW LIFE! Alleluia! :-D

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  4. Mark, I have been in FTW this past couple of weeks. I celebrated for a continuing congregation that was meeting in a member's home last week. I also met +Ted as he was introduced to the diocese last Fri. I have not seen so many people as excited about being Episcopalians even at General Convention. Those folks were PUMPED!

    FTW is my family home and although I am the first woman to have ever celebrated in the diocese back in 1989, I have dispaired over the years if the people would ever come to the place where they could ever live into the Baptismal promises that all Christians are called to. My hopes for FTW that through the help of +Ted, they will find their voices and their abilities. It was truly like being with folk who have been let out of jail.

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  5. The cost of propping up the remnant diocese of San Joaquin is at least $500,000. The diocese voted to send all their monies to the lawyers and then have the national church pay for the diocese's actual operating expenses. In this manner, the national church can say that "only" $2 million went to the lawyers and the $500,000 went to "mission expenses." Does this accounting chicanery fool anyone? (Perhaps.)

    My questions to Prludium readers: How much to prop up the other three remnant dioceses? Will the accounting shell game continue? Do people here think that the denomination can afford it, especially at this time of financial crisis? Would it not have been better for the remnant dioceses be folded into neighboring dioceses (at no cost whatsoever)?

    -

    The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved?" They replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household."

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  6. robroy...the scripture quote at the end of your message... are you suggesting that we in Preludium land are not saved or that we have not asked that question ourselves, or do not believe in the Lord Jesus?

    You have no idea....

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  7. Would it not have been better for the remnant dioceses be folded into neighboring dioceses (at no cost whatsoever)?

    Robroy, not really "...(at no cost whatsoever)". Are you still a member of the Episcopal Church?

    I see that Mark has already addressed my other concern with your comment.

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  8. Mark+, that was just a random scripture verse from my morning readings from Acts pointing to the miraculous nature of our good Lord.

    Nothing to do with our current unpleasantness.

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  9. robroy...ah....thanks. Sometimes this stuff all makes me too touchy...sigh.

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  10. If Iker, Schofield & Duncan had actually honored their vows and refused to play egotistical schismatic games, there would not have to be resources diverted to support the remaining Episcopalians in San Joaquin, Pgh., and Ft. Worth.

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  11. Chère grandmère,

    I am still officially a member of the Episcopal Church. Presently, I am not attending the local parish because our rector accepted a teaching position and the children's ed program collapsed during the time of the interim. Essentially everyone that was left was over 60 - no kids.

    I am puzzled that you question my "no additional costs". The diocese of Northwest Texas, has undergone rapid decline (16% in the past 5 years). It could have very easily incorporated the parishes - at no cost, no special convention, no special bishop, etc. The same is true for San Joaquin.

    Now, I am not a lawyer, but I realize much of this is merely posturing for the (shameful, to use St. Paul's word) lawsuits. I don't know if the lawsuits are harmed if they would have simply rolled the parishes into the the diocese of Northwest Texas. As St. Paul says, "utterly lost." What surprises me is that there seems to be no one in the liberal left that openly questions the destructive path that the denomination is currently on. They collectively shout, "Crucify the orthodox!" Is it that you are afraid that the whole denomination will collapse if Christian charity is shown to the departing? The denomination is the fastest declining. It hardly needs more empty buildings. The departing are leaving behind gazillions in endowments. Yet, the remaining say, not even a prayer book or candle stick! Faith, hope and charity...the greatest is charity.

    A votre service.

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  12. Robroy,

    I'm not sure why you make accusations of chicanery when the line items and diocesan votes are so completely transparent. It isn't as if 815 is sweeping $500,000 under a blanket of general office expenses.

    I also disagree that attaching the remaining Episcopalians in these broken dioceses would have no financial implications. If nothing else, these people have been disenfranchised from the local majority and need a little TLC. I suspect a neighboring diocese would at least require an additional assisting bishop (and other staff) to care for their rather unique needs, both spiritual and practical. Please start seeing the "remainings" as people, not numbers - be it ASA or the bottom line of a financial statement.

    (BTW, that's an interesting random verse you selected. Acts 16-33 is truly a story of mutual caring and compassion. God provides a miracle, Paul prevents a suicide, the jailer provides safe harbor and bathes the prisoners' wounds, and all are open to the spiritual grace of the gospel. Now that's what I call being saved.

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  13. Robroy, thank you for answering my question. Simple movement of people has costs, and that's to say nothing of costs that are not monetary, as Lynn speaks of.

    I believe that you exaggerate the grimness of the future of the Episcopal Church, but we can go back and forth about that.

    I see no crucifixions taking place.

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  14. Oops on that citation, it should be Acts 16:16-33. Don't anyone get riled up about me not dusting off my Bible because I left out one of the "16"s.

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  15. I agree with Lynn, that incorporating the people who are not leaving into the Diocese of Northwest Texas is not as cost free as Robroy has suggested. The Diocese of Northwest Texas covers a huge area (http://www.nwt.org/map.htm)! Sure, low population, but their bishops must already spend hours and hours in the car to get around the Diocese. Having to go another 2.5-3 hours further east from Abilene surely represents a significant investment in time and fuel, on top of the considerations and expenses that Lynn mentions.

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  16. 1. It may well be that incorporation with neighbouring dioceses is the most appropriate course of action for the faithful Episcopalians in San Joaquin, Qunicy and Fort Worth. Who knows - maybe even Pittsburgh.

    Thing is, RobRoy, unlike you, I'd have those faithful Episcopalians take a meaningful role in such a decision, not ram it through while they are seeking to rebuild what has been stolen by thieves and destroyed by vandals.

    2. No one has ever said anything even metaphorically similar to "crucify the orthodox." Why must you people lie all the time?

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  17. "Thing is, RobRoy, unlike you, I'd have those faithful Episcopalians take a meaningful role in such a decision, not ram it through while they are seeking to rebuild what has been stolen by thieves and destroyed by vandals."

    Hmmm, it seems that the remnant diocese of Fort Worth rejected two candidates for bishops for being too liberal when 815 grew tired and imposed the Bp Gulick on them. According to Louie Crew, he has a perfect "GLBQT" friendly voting record.

    I wonder if the guys in the pews of the 15 parishes really want to be a front for shameful lawsuits to run out those in the departing 66 parishes? Or would they simply like to peacefully move on? I am sure we will never know because such a poll will never be allowed.

    But the salivary juices of those like Malcolm are flowing. Sue, sue, sue without thought of the consequences. It seems that level heads will not prevail. As I have said, there are two outcomes, Pyrrhic victory or loss. The monies thrown at the lawyers could be used to propagate the message of the video "Why be an Episcopalian?" that Mark+ had featured a few weeks ago. Instead, a very different message will be proclaimed with years of headlines, "The Episcopal Church Sues You."

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  18. 815 grew tired and imposed the Bp Gulick on them

    In your experience, rr, do people laugh, dance, and weep for joy when something is "imposed" upon them? (Because they don't, in mine)

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  19. Where did I mention suing, RobRoy?

    Please stop lying.

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