7/01/2009

The General Convention Pot is being stirred and shaken.

It's the lead up to General Convention, which begins next week. The plot thickens, the pot boils, things are shaken and stirred:

(i) President of the House of Deputies Bonnie Anderson is suggesting that Dispatch of Business may propose a special order so that the House of Deputies can meet as a Committee of the Whole to discuss matters pertaining to the restrictions and admonitions placed on Bishops and Standing Committees by B033 passed on the last day of General Convention 2006. Hopefully if this takes place it will be a forward looking discussion rather than a blame game muttering. It is time to move on and this special order might provide the means to do so. See the announcement on this HERE.

(ii) The challenge to the budget and to The Joint Committee on Program, Budget and Finance will come to a head and the sensibilities of scarcity and abundance will be at the center of the discussion of what to do when the funds are down. See article HERE.

(iii) A study on world mission has been produced and is available HERE. It will challenge the Convention to look again at the world mission priorities of The Episcopal Church. This study is informative of the current state of affairs in how funds and staff time are used. It does not propose a specific future direction, but provides information for any who are interested in future planning.

(iv) A group of bishops are offering a resolution which would allow for the use of the Prayer Book service for the blessing of a civil marriage in the case of civil marriage between persons of the same sex. See HERE.

(v) There is a concerted effort to get a line item back in the budget for the Millennium

Development Goals. At issue here is posting a specific amount for this effort in a public way. See HERE.

(vi) There is a proposal on Communications efforts of The Episcopal Church that is meant to counter the proposal by Church Center Staff in Communications to redirect the energies and monies for communications in new ways. The Board of Governors of Episcopal Life Media will propose two resolutions on furthering the work of Communications. See HERE.

(vii) It appears that the Daughters of the King are in the midst of a challenge to reorder their membership qualifications. The Daughters of the King are both an Episcopal Church organization and at the same time larger, including on some level persons from other Churches. Working out this membership matter is seen by some in the organization as a microcosm of the struggles faced in the Church these days. See HERE. and HERE.

Much of this stirring is in relation to the proposed budget, the programmatic offerings of the Church Center staff, and the resolutions coming out of various Committees, Commissions, Board and Agencies. Some of it arises out of these particular times in the Anglican Communion and The Episcopal Church.

It is a feisty time, but it seems to me deputies and bishops are better informed prior to General Convention than in past years and are coming with more creative ideas.

It promises to be a fine Convention, particularly if we keep our life together in prayer, with openness to what the Spirit might be offering. We shall see.


14 comments:

  1. Hi Mark, There are other views available about DOK besides Baby Blue... Please check out triennialdok.blogspot.com

    I guess James Bond doesn't want any of this cuz he just likes his shaken...

    Peace, Jamie P

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  2. re: IV Rite of Blessing of a Civil Marriage to now be interpreted/used for SSBs.

    I don't get it. Why the resolution? It has become VERY obvious that whether or not GC '09 passes or rejects this, there are those who will create their own law and do as they see fit.

    And...with that reality constantly documented and winked at, what is the purpose of GC again? How can anybody possibly respect the law of this Church when it is no law at all?

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  3. George Sumner of all the people... not exactly a voice of objectivity and tolerance. He's currently principal of the very conservative Canadian seminary Wycliffe College and has made his views known on several occasions.

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  4. I think you will see Rowan, Katie and some of their friends successfully keep BO33 in place....

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  5. O/T

    Due to a last-minute change in the schedule for GC, the meetup time for the followers of Fr jake have changed. The revised plan (still on July 10th):
    I. Meetup begins at the No-host bar/reception, promenade, outside the Pacific Ballroom, Hilton Hotel, 6.00. (If you get there early, check the Atrium bar in the hotel lobby)

    II. Join at the Integrity Eucharist, Pacific Ballroom, Hilton Hotel, 7.30.

    III. After the Eucharist: Bar Louie in the Anaheim Garden Walk, 321 Katella Ave.


    More info at Friends go to Anaheim

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  6. Like a good James Bond martini, we Episcopalians, coming as we do from good Anglican stock, are stirred but never shaken.

    On another note, I just learned that, besides not having Kendall Harmon at GC, neither will we be graced by the presence of Brad Drell.

    No 'Men in Black' from Fort Worth, either, and Katie Sherrod - KATIE SHERROD!!! will be on the floor as a deputy. From Fort Worth!

    There won't be a dry eye in the House of Deputies when she walks on the floor that first day.

    I am fairly confident that there will hardly be a "Progressive Sweep" at GC, and, I don't know about you, but I'm starting to breathe easier already.

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  7. Allen, as to "why?" Because this "It has become VERY obvious that whether or not GC '09 passes or rejects this, there are those who will create their own law and do as they see fit." is a lie.

    It is very simple, easy to understand and clear. The fact is that the canons do matter and no, we do not go off and do our own thing. We let the schismatics do that in Southern Cone.

    FWIW
    jimB

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  8. Jim quoted me ..."those who will create their own law and do as they see fit."
    and added
    "is a lie".

    Jim, just a few examples of how we have no Church law in effect:

    Integrity and others looks back to the then-illegal ordination of women and passes it off as a necessary illegality. It was right in the eyes of a very small minority, and it was shoved down the throats of this Church by activists after the GC had voted to study the matter. No consequences occurred because those ramming it home were a law unto themselves.
    We have communion of the unbaptized when the canons state otherwise.
    We have the Executive Council cutting the budget on youth ministry after the last GC voted to make it a major priority (yet millions approved for a new archives?!?!!) not to mention hiring more lawyers.
    We have Bishop Gulick installed in a non-diocese without a voting quorum to elect him.
    ...and should we ever forget that (according to our PB and her lawyers) that a quorum in the HOB is now defined as whomever is there, not a majority of those entitled to vote..(which technically COULD mean that a vote on a major policy could take place with a few stragglers rather than a majority of bishops).
    ....and I could go on, but I'm sure that it won't ever matter.

    We ARE a Church without law except it be the whims of the loud and guilt-laying cause du jour.

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  9. sorry, jim. but don't the facts speak for themselves as to the blessings of SSU? i'm in the middle of that debate, but i find it disingenous, at best, to deny that cannons are being ignored. and i won't even go into CWOB territory. come on. i shop TEC churches. you see this, yes?

    joel

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  10. Jim,

    Absolutely!

    I'm still angry, frustrated and frankly have no faith in our leadership. If I do fail in my faith in the church God led me to, I'll leave - me, myself, I, without rabble-rousing and spending 20 years at the door yelling "I'm really leaving this time! Don't try to stop me!!! I'm going!!!! . . . "

    If my faith fails me so far in the ability of the Holy Spirit, I also won't go off declaring myself Archbishop of the eleventy-first REAL TRUE Anglican Province of Grand Tufti Hidy-Ho Holiness.

    Nor will I go to the Southern Baptists and try to make them into me.

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  11. Allen,

    Allen, the majority of deputies at the 1973 General Convention vote to approve WO. That's not a "small minority," the measure failed because of the split-vote rule. The House of Bishops signaled their approval of WO, albeit in concept, in two informal votes in 1972 and 1974.

    As for "no consequences," the retired bishops who performed the the irregular ordinations of women in Philly and D.C. were censured by the House of Bishops.

    Source: Holmes, David L.: A Brief History of the Episcopal Church, 1993. (There are sources others available, that's just the one I had handy here at my desk.)

    I also have read about Bishop Creighton (Washington) disciplining clergy for the irregular ordinations in D.C - it's in his official bio.

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  12. Christopher (P.)4/7/09 10:33 AM

    Why is supporting an archives for the church presented as if self-evidently foolish? All sides of every major debate rely on the history of the church to understand the way the church works and to support their various positions. A well functioning archives provides valuable, and more important, authentic information to support a well functioning church.

    (That's not to say that youth ministry isn't valuable, just that I'm surprised and a bit dismayed that archives are implied as obviously superfluous. Y'all can do better!)

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  13. Susan Russell posts a quote:



    From Doug LeBlanc's story -- filed April 3 with The Living Church -- this little bit of Fun Facts to Know & Tell About the Agenda of the Orthodite Right:

    “We do not believe that Canterbury will recognize us, at least while the current archbishop is still in office,” said the Rev. J. Philip Ashey, the AAC’s chief operating officer and chaplain, in a brief speech in the suburbs of Richmond Va. Fr. Ashey compared the AAC to the Special Forces of the U.S. military. “Like Special Forces, we go behind the scenes and we blow up things,” he said.


    Take your flak jackets.

    ReplyDelete

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