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Monday, September 24, 2007

HOB Day 6: Mood music for a response statement

Well, the drama has been high to over-the-top in the Episcopal Blogosphere today.

Everytime I find my way over to one of the blogs, I can practically hear the tension and expectation and anticipation crackling in the air.

Matt Kennedy (over at "Bullies on Viagra"), ever serious and always intense, is doing his part as the good and faithful foot soldier, no doubt shooting "arrow prayers" of thanksgiving every now and again to which ever parent said to him in high school, "You know, son, you really ought to take a course in typing. You never know how it will help you in college, or, for that matter, in the rest of life."

He's just been typing his little fingers to the very bone, God bless him, taking almost verbatim "live blogging" notes as various speakers are at the podium. Really. He's been amazing. I just wish I knew that sometime during the day or before the poor dear goes to bed tonight, someone tells him a raucous joke that makes a direct hit on his ticklebox and he laughs so hard he weeps.

T'would do his poor, weary soul some good, methinks.

Just for a change of pace, ultra-conservative Blogger "Baby Blue" is broadcasting live in the downtime, graciously showing us 'round the newsroom where they had all been banished after supper so the bishops could meet in executive session. She's also taken pictures of the room where the bishops are meeting. She's trying to keep it light, but even through her natural "on camera" nervousness, you can see the tension on her face.

South Carolinian Sarah Hey reveals her anxiety in her usual fallback position and has drawn complex analogies of the House of Bishops to a few characters from the last book of the trilogy "The Lord of the Rings." Whatever.

Even the Progressive Blogs are all abuzz. Walking With Integrity's John Gibson and John Clinton Bradley have been veritable saints in terms of giving us a good perspective of the goings on in NOLA, with religious and secular press, locally and around the globe. Father Jake and Jim Naughton and Susan Russell have all been keeping us up to date. ENS has been ever professional, even-handed and thorough.

(If you want links to these sites, scroll down a bit. I did this all the other day and quite frankly, I'm just too tired to link everything again. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima nissan stanza. And, get over it.)

The word tonight is that the bishops on the various drafting committees have taken their first draft and scrapped it and that they are starting fresh tonight. They hope to have something to present in the morning.

I do believe this is good news. Indeed, I'm heartened by it.

I've been working since yesterday afternoon in Newark with constituent members of The Consultation, an organization comprised of the 13 independent justice organizations of The Episcopal Church. I was part of a three-member drafting committee which composed a message which we sent to the bishops this afternoon as they struggle to compose their message to the church. I will post it here tomorrow morning.

Until then, you will excuse me if I offer an opinion about what the good men and women in purple need to do in order to be able to work together and get the job done. Well, that's why some of you read this blog, isn't it? To read my opinion. God only knows why you think it matters, but since you've gotten this far, I won't disappoint you or make you wait any longer.

The good bishops need to remember that they are bishops. Their job is to lead, not save. We have a savior. That would be one, Christ Jesus.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people don't need to be saved from the big bad 'fundevangelical' - in The Episcopal Church or anywhere in the Anglican Communion.

This doesn't mean that we don't deeply appreciate the hard work done on our behalf, but with all due respect, this is not about us. It's not about them. It's not even about the church or the communion.

This is about the work of the gospel. This is the work we are ALL called to do.

It just happens, this time, to be about LGBT people. It will come around again, to women. It always does. Until it goes around to some other group. It always does.

The Episcopal Church does not need to be rescued or saved. She's doing just fine, thank you very much. Just a little necessary housecleaning and self-corrective pruning going on, that's all.

And, despite rumors to the contrary, neither does The Anglican Communion need to be rescued or saved. Even the most cursory read of her history will reveal that She's been through far worse than this, the Old Girl, and come through just fine.

And why is that, you ask? Well, not because of any salvific action on the part of anyone in a purple shirt, or a tiara for that matter.

We don't need heroes. We need leaders.

If the HOB does its job and LEADS, we'll be fine.

If the HOB is mindful of its place as only one of the four orders of the baptized (that would be: laity, deacon, priest, bishop), and keeps the sacred vows of the Baptismal Covenant close to its heart and mind as it takes pen to paper, they will, I have no doubt, find a way to lead This Marvelous Ship of Fools out of the present storm on the High Seas of Anglicanism and help us find our way safely to dry land.

We already know how the story ends. As Bishop Gene reminds us, we're all going to heaven. The bishops simply need to act out in their lives what they say with their lips. Or, as the rappers say, they "need to put their bodies where their mouths have been."

So - here's some mood music for the bishops to write their response statement. A little theme song, if you will, for the House of Bishops tonight.

Someone cue Tina Turner. Hit it, girl.

Out of the ruins
Out from the wreckage
Can't make the same mistake this time

We are the children
The last generation
We are the ones they left behind
And i wonder when we are ever gonna change it
Living under the fear till nothing else remains

We don't need another hero
We don't need to know the way home
All we want is life beyond the thunderdome

Looking for something we can rely on
There's got to be something better out there
Love and compassion, their day is coming
All else are castles built in the air

And i wonder when we are ever gonna change it
Living under the fear till nothing else remains
All the children say

We don't need another hero
We don't need to know the way home
All we want is life beyond the thunderdome

What do we do with our lives
We leave only a mark
Will our story shine like a life
Or end in the dark
Give it all or nothing


Muthah+ said...

Amen, Sistah

RonF said...

As Bishop Gene reminds us, we're all going to heaven.

You really think so?

Is that what Scripture says? That we are all going to heaven?

Or is there a context to the "we" in your statement that I'm not aware of?

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Ah, there you are ronf. You posted your comment in the wrong place.

And, yes, I do believe we are all going to heaven. Haven't you ever read John 3:16?

Apparently, you're not a football fan. There's always one fan in the stadium who has that on a sign.