A Knife in the Back

13 03 2008

When +Gene Robinson, bishop of New Hampshire, did not receive an invitation to the Lambeth Conference, I have to admit I was not surprised. I did, however, have some hope that he would be able to attend in some way either as an observer, or participate in some kind of offically-unoffical way. I had hope that once people met him and encountered the love of God and enthusiasm for the Gospel present in him, it would mark a turning point of sorts in the current messiness of our lives as Anglicans and Episcopalians.

Apparently, talks and negotiations and all sorts of back and forth have happened since that first bit of news. All of those things, as we know, have proved meaningless. No invitation of any kind in any capacity would be forthcoming, except to particpate in the Marketplace exhibit section. +Gene, as we know declined, as he should.

Marketplace? MARKETPLACE? An exhibit?

How … utterly … dehumanizing. How … sinful.

How insulting.

Not only is this an insult, a slap in the face, a knife in the back to +Gene, but to every LGBT person in the US, but the entire blessed (and i am using that word very loosely) Communion. It is a horrific insult to the entire Diocese of New Hampshire and to the entire Episcopal Church. The Episcopal Church has done nothing but bend over backwards to accomodate every request or demand, and time and again, the result is still the same. More handwringing. Another request. More empty and meaningless assurances.

I had hope that the House of Bishops had come to find a more unified voice by their strong words a year ago and would have responded in a similar manner as their last meetings. Not this time. The statement they issued in this regard seems to be nothing more than an acknowledgment of what has been done.
Maybe, that was all they could do.

Maybe all they can do is to continue to offer words about sacrifice and fasting, the language of Lent.

I for one will not do that.

I continue to remain in awe and have a great deal of respect and love for +Gene. I continue to be humbled by his courage and generosity. It cements in my mind and heart that voices like iNYC are needed more than ever.

The full inclusion of every baptized person in the Body of Christ is inevitable. It is time to stop using the language of Lent and begin to speak words of Advent and Easter, of expectation and life.

Church, it is high time we put our pledge in the plate, and live into these promises like we actually believe it.




2 responses

14 03 2008

I think he should come to Lambeth anyway as a private individual and be a rebuke to the pharisees by his simple presence.

14 03 2008

I am not sure if the English BCP has the same Baptismal Covenant, but I suspect it is very similar. I wonder how our befuddled Arch Appeaser of Canterbury can reconcile these words spoken at the Great Easter Vigil:

“Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?”

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