Friday, May 15, 2009

More Forrester

Consents and "no" votes are still coming in regarding the election of Kevin Thew Forrester to be bishop of Northern Michigan. I assume my earlier posts have fallen off the radar screens for most of you.

I don't know what is the right decision about consent to Forrester's election. I said my piece here and here. Of course, the "conservatives" are still whipping this up as a rallying issue. For all that I don't appreciate them, I am glad StandFirm is keeping a tally, the latest of which is here.
What the faux orthodox fail to realize is that the Episcopal Church bishops and standing committees are not monolithic. It's not a simple matter of "reasserters" vs. "revisionists." Actual Episcopalians weigh and wrestle with the issues. Most of us are profoundly orthodox. Some of us are coming down on one side, and some are coming down on the other side of this question. Unlike the faux-orthodox who march in a single phalanx, the rest of us are wrestling with the issues and voting our conscience. I respect all the votes.
Unlike the bloggers at StandFirm, I don't assume I have a Direct HotLine to God. I believe many voices should be heard. And I pray that our bishops and standing committees will come to a right discernment. Most of the bottom-feeders at StandFirm heard the words "Buddhist meditation, and immediately rejected Father Forrester as a heretic. How very silly. [Of course, those are the same people who call our Presiding Bishop names like "Mother Squiddy." So I am forewarned.] Unlike the faux orthodox, I am listening for the voice of God and trusting that what should happen will happen.

Just yesterday, another member of the diocese has posted a comment on an old posting on my blog. I'm pulling her comments up here, lest they be lost.


Kelly wrote this comment:

. . . as a member of the diocese of Northern Michigan I find it comforting to
know that others are wrestling seriously with the issues surrounding KTF
election as Bishop, as I have seen very little evidence that the diocese, as a
whole, has seriously thought through this election. There is, sadly, an
overwhelming sense of "we have to accept Kevin as there is no one else, we can
afford no one else and we have been without a bishop for too long." Most of us
assumed that KTF would be the bishop elect when Bishop Kelsey died, it seemed a
foregone conclusion as an unfortunate side effect of Mutual Ministry (which does
have many good qualities) in this particular diocese has been the belief that
"we have everything we need right here among ourselves."

Translation: we don't need any outsiders coming in and messing up our little clique." Personally I had hoped the diocese would accept an interm bishop from elsewhere to help us through the grieving process etc...but that did not happen.

I, too, have serious concerns regarding KTF Christology...but who in their right mind is going to take seriously someone with my background?- unchurched as a youth, Methodist via baptism and by choice at 17, earned a bachelor's degree in religion from the Nazarenes and a MTS from Jesuits at Spring Hill...I don't even take myself
seriously with that hodge podge of a pedigree!

on a serious note..thank you, all of you, for sharing your divergent positions and for caring, in your unique ways, about this little tiny diocese. your prayers and support are surely needed at this time. (oh, don't bother checking out my blog.haven't updated it in ages and anyway it is about adoption and foster care. I'd be happy to talk via email with anyone tho!)


The conservative bloggers are making much of the fact that the Standing Committee of Missouri voted to withhold consent. I didn't break that news, though I knew about it the day after the Standing Committee meeting. The self-interested conservatives' comments are tiresome to me. They have no idea of the dialogue in the Standing Committee, but they characterize them and assume they know how our bishop will vote. Shame on them.

I would like to see an end to the "politicizing" of episcopal elections. I objected strongly to Mark Lawrence's election ... as I read his statements and did not believe he would guard the faith, unity, and discipline of The Episcopal Church. For analogous reasons, I cannot support Father Forrester's consecration. I would like to see all us us apply consistent measures in evaluating candidates to the episcopacy. "Neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, neither male nor female" ... and neither liberal or conservative. So far, it appears I was wrong about Mark Lawrence and TEC make a wiser decision than mine. I pray the whole church will come to a wise decision about Bishop-Elect Forrester.

3 Comments:

Blogger Grandmère Mimi said...

Lisa, if any of the regulars at SF ever spoke of the Presiding Bishop respectfully, I'd fall in a dead faint out of my chair.

I pray that the bishops and Standing Committees make the right decision about KTF. And it's not at all, nor should it be, about Buddhist meditation practices.

5/16/2009 7:47 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

Lisa,

I am I am happy to say I have neither voice nor vote in the confirmation of episcopal elections.

I will observe that much good has come to Christianity from interaction with Buddhists cf. Centering Prayer.

One wonders if the SFiF sorts think Basil Hosmer and Tom Merton are not orthodox.

FWIW
jimB

5/16/2009 8:33 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Mark Harris comments on the loss if KTF does not get consents here

5/16/2009 9:12 PM  

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