Friday, December 08, 2006

Name that Province

There has been much brouhaha in the past week about the San Joaquin diocesan convention, which voted to remove all references to the Episcopal Church from its constitution, instead declaring itself a member of the Anglican Communion. Mind you, no ecclesial body can legitimately claim to be Anglican unless recognition is given by the Archbishop of Canterbury. But that does not stop these guys! (And yes, they are almost all "guys.")

One of the interesting aspects of the San Joaquin convention was the presentation broadcast to the convention by Greg Venables, Presiding Bishop of the Southern Cone (comprising some scattered parishes in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay). The talk is available here or here.

In it, he seems to assure the supposedly "faithful Anglicans" [a.k.a. secessionist Episcopalians] that he will have a new Anglican province created for them in the U.S., parallel to but separate from the tainted Episcopal Church.

Venables' speech has been much discussed in the blogosphere. On an Episcopal listserv of some renown, there were serious questions about whether and/or how such a thing could come to pass. [The answer, in a nutshell: It could only happen if 2/3 of the Primates approve it.]

But this was the very, very best moment in the discussion.

In the midst of all these erudite questions about what Anglican polity allows, the Rev. Andrew T. Gerns asked the pithy question, cutting to the heart of the matter:

"So what will they call it? The Episcopal Church, Missouri Synod?"

I don't mind telling you that I nearly spewed my coffee all over my computer keyboard and screen when I read his modest question!

[Incidentally, I commend Father Gerns' blog to you all. He's not a daily blogger. But when he writes, it's worth reading -- unlike me, who writes whether or not I have a significant thought.]

Indeed! The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod is obsessed with purity and with who's in and who's out. (Sound familiar?) You can't even take communion in a Missouri Synod Lutheran church unless you are known to the pastor. And folks are forever being thrown out of Missouri Synod churches for one reason or another. [Hat-tip to "jerseyjo" for kindly pointing out some errors about the LCMS in the initial posting.]

In the Episcopal Church today, the purity movement seems to be directed from Pittsburgh. Or at least that's what Akinola has told us to believe.

Therefore, I think this name should stick (but with a twist) for the purportedly pure Episcopalians who are feeling called-out from among us: let them be Pittsburgh Synod Episcopalians!

PSE. It has a certain ring to it, I think. Just don't say it too fast.


Anonymous sharecropper said...

I love it! Pittsburgh Synod Episcopalians! And, saying it three times very quickly really does make it more understandable.

12/08/2006 6:05 AM  
Anonymous jerseyjo said...

Just a clarification -- as a former Lutheran (ULCA/LCA/ELCA, of course) from Pittsburgh, the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod was actually founded in 1847. It's been around for awhile...

On the other hand, Pittsburgh Synod Episcopalians (PSE) sounds great.

My prayers go with my former Pittsburgh neighbors from the Progressive Episcopalians of Pittsburgh (PEP) who are not PSE at all.


12/08/2006 2:43 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Thanks, jerseyjo, for taking the time to correct me. I failed to do my homework. A friend here was in seminary during the last split among the Lutherans, and I obviously conflated that with the 19th-century creation of the LCMS. I'll go back to my post and make the corrections.

Many thanks!

12/08/2006 5:41 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Hmmm . . .how about Pittsburgh Anglican Province or "PAP"?

Sounds fitting for a place were Mr. Duncan has proclaimed my faith to be "counterfeit."

Actually, I'm going for something cozy and homey and welcoming: How about "Greg's Place"?

12/08/2006 6:14 PM  
Blogger Bill said...

I think the "Anglican Church of the United States" would be a better fit.

12/08/2006 9:42 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Bill, would "Anglican Nigerians of the U.S." work for you? It works for me.

12/08/2006 9:46 PM  
Blogger Bill said...

Lisa, being half Peruvian, I'd go with US-Southern Cone Anglican Church which perhaps might be a safe middle ground we can agree on. :)

Or pehaps you'd rather have the Venerable Anglican Church of the U.S.A!
Sorry that was an awful pun.

12/09/2006 5:08 PM  

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