20 February 2007

An early American response to the Communiqué

I thought this was a interesting and measured first response to the Communiqué from Fr Tony Clavier, an Episcopal Priest in West Virginia.

The Primates Speak

Amongst other things, Fr Tony writes:

"The House of Bishops and the Executive Council [of the Episcopal Church of the US] are being given perhaps the most difficult and most important decision in the history of Anglicanism in America. At least the Canadians have now ample warning to prepare themselves to respond to the [world-wide Anglican Communion].

"Surely if it is in God's will that gays and lesbians may marry, or bishops in same sex relationships are the thing of the future, we can all wait to see if this revelation becomes apparent more widely across the world before we break ranks with our family and tradition?

In the meantime perhaps those on the right can practice good manners and the language of Anglican diplomacy."

Do read the whole piece here.

Waiting must be especially difficult for those who feel marginalised and excluded - but there are those on all "sides" who must be feeling this way.

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At 4:19 pm, Anonymous Rev.Ted said...

I just thought that we should all read Romans Chapter 1 veses 27&28 and also the rest of THE BOOK.
(Rev. Ted Spiller).

At 12:23 pm, Blogger Chris said...

Hi Rev Ted

Thanks for commenting on this post – as you will have seen, I don’t get many (any) comments!

I also used to set a great deal of store by these two verses in Romans, but I agree we have to read the rest of the book! There are a great many verses in scripture which, if taken in isolation, would lead us to do a great many things differently. But taken as a whole, what is God saying to us?

I began to think differently once I began (for fairly obvious reasons!) to question what some Bible passages say about the role and ministry of women. Then I realised that I couldn’t argue for reading and interpreting those verses in their context without also looking again at other issues – such as the Christian response to gay people.

I said that Fr Tony’s response was measured because he accepts that it will take time for the (Anglican) Church as a whole to discern God’s will here. For me, the gospel imperative is one of justice and mercy, of offering the love of God to all people. If I were to quote a particular verse in my turn, it would be Micah 6:8

“He has shown all you people what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (TNIV)

But in humility, I also have to learn to listen to others, who are also trying to listen to God! That’s part of “being church”, isn’t it? And it’s why God calls us together!

Thanks again!


At 2:31 pm, Blogger Chris said...

Rev Ted writes:

Hello Chris,
Thank you for your response to the "Blog". I felt that you deserved some sort of response to your efforts.

I agree with what you say about the GOSPEL, i.e. justice and mercy etc. Also we need to remember that Scripture shows us what is pleasing to God and also what is not e.g sin. Whilst the Romans quote shows something as sin, it is required of us to also remember that God, whilst He hates the sin, He still loves the sinner and wants them to repent and change their ways (justice & mercy again).

There seems to me to be a danger that we forget that we are made in the image of God and then try to create a god to our liking in our image in order that it then fits in with what we want to think and even allow or do.

As to walking with God in humility, I always recall my ordination with the words of 2 Corinthians Ch. 3 verses 5 & 6 (as well as the rest of the Book).

Yours in His service, Ted.


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