Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Welcome Voices

Several bishops have written about the Sudanese statement and interview from Archbishop Daniel. Here are two of my favorites.

Bishop Smith offers non-anxiety, perhaps even cautious hope on his blog today. He opened with this:
The more I encounter the Episcopal Church of the Sudan, the more I am made aware of differences-- and aware of what appears to be God's great delight in diversity. We so easily misunderstand one another, from the vastly worlds we inhabit, though I must admit that I am still recoiling from the shock of yesterday's events. I am beginning to understand that they came from the fact of those different worlds we inhabit. Jim Naughton has had the advantage of being out and about, not cooped up in meetings (in rooms with all the air circulation of Apollo XIII), and you will find his good summary of the Sudanese matter here. There is still much work to do, in conversation with our Sudanese colleagues, but now twenty-four hours after the news release and news conference, having productive conversation at least seems possible.

I will admit to some emotional exhaustion, over the past day. Worry about Sudan, worry about Episcopalians back in Missouri, but no real worry at this point about the broader issues of communion. Or perhaps I should say that I am not anxious about these issues, remaining cautiously hopeful about finding a way, some way, any way forward. Somehow the larger Anglican world can by the grace of God find a means, perhaps some brand new, yet unthought-of means, to remain connected to one another. I could be wrong, but I think that can prove the case. Enough about this, until more becomes clear, in due time.
I trust my bishop's instincts.

Mark Harris does his usual bang-up job on the Sudan situation (and more) at "Fear is not an option." He begins:
Today there has been the lobbing of bombs at Lambeth, verbal bombs that make very big concussive noise and rattle pundits and bloggers alike.
He remarks on the very odd timing of Archbishop Deng and Bishop Iker's statements, and he does a fine job of rounding up the commentary and analyzing it. In one of his concluding paragraphs, Mark says: "I think it is too soon to see it all falling down. If it does or if it does not, the work of getting about being the Church will remain." Amen and amen.


Blogger FranIAm said...

Prayers for all keep flowing from me.

I thought that was an interesting post on the topic as well.

7/24/2008 5:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is like a train wreck. I want desperately to look away but I find myself coming back to stare with eyes wide, heart racing.

I have strong convictions about what I believe the Bible teaches. I interpret it in a way that I think makes philosophical and theological sense. Am I right? Of course I believe I am; otherwise I'd believe differently.

While I have these strong beliefs, I do not expect others to believe the same. I enjoy good theological discourse. It is how I learn. It is how I grow.

What I do expect is that others treat me with respect even as they disagree with me. Personal attacks provide no room for discernment on either side. That is at the core of my inability to understand. People can choose to believe I am Hell-bound. No argument from me with them. But why do they hate me? Why the ugliness? I thank you for taking your blog to comment moderation. I cannot see where such vitriol can serve a positive function. At the same time, thank you Lisa for keeping this forum "live" for appropriate discussion and sharing.

I know about being an abomination to God. I know about being an embarrassment to my family. I know about being a pariah to society. It is how I was raised.

To this day after nearly 50 years of living this life, most of which have been as a woman in a fully committed monogamous magnificent relationship with the most wonderful woman in the world, our families still live in denial about who we are. Sad, really.

I live in a part of conservative Virginia where I have to be careful with my actions; a gay person can get beat up 'round here. I've even imagined that one night I'll find a burning cross in my front yard. (Yep. They are still around.)

"The church" has turned its back on me in many ways. Perhaps it will continue to do so and maybe more profoundly.

Even so, I believe that "whosoever" includes me exactly as I was created. No amount of anger and hatred flung at me can change that. I'm held in the hand of Jesus and we're held in the hand of God.

So: disagree with me. I can disagree with you. But we can do so as children of God, avoiding speech, rhetoric, attitudes that seek to destroy each other and God's Kingdom.

Is that impossible?

I hope your bishop is right...


7/24/2008 10:29 AM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Good link, FranIAm. I appreciate Bishop Epting's analysis.

Oh, Susan, what can I say or do? You're right. I agree. And I send you a very big, albeit virtual, hug!

7/24/2008 12:31 PM  
Blogger --Susan said...

Hey! I'm kinda like the Velveteen Rabbit! I'm finally REAL (ie no longer anon!).

Many thanks for the hug. And I return that hug.

7/24/2008 2:10 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Hooray! Now that both you and IT have "identities," maybe I can finally ban all "anonymous" postings.

7/24/2008 2:13 PM  

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