Wednesday, July 01, 2009
Hope on the Horizon
This is the latest installment from IntegriTV, the brilliant effort of "Our Ms. Brooks" (that would be Louise, AKA 'My cutie pie' to Ms. Susan Russell).
The bishops seen here represent some of the best hope for activism in the House of Bishops to move us beyond B033 and into all the sacraments for all the baptized.
Susan has posted some really good responses to the FAQ's of those who are IntegrityUSA members. I commend them to you.
Some of those who are a high 'J' on the Myers-Briggs or those who have been eating too much of the Bread of Anxiety, are complaining that they find their experience of the 'fuzziness' of the answers frustrating.
They want a 'battle plan' - A, B, C and D.
Yes, yes, lovies. I know.
Well, heres' the thing: the art of politics - especially church politics (and, let's not kid ourselves here or let our lofty piety or inclination to altruism blind us from the hard, cold reality of how our church works) - is not an exact science.
So, when Susan says that we will support whatever legislation passes both houses, she's being politically savvy as well as spiritually and theologically astute.
Didn't St. Paul say, "We walk by faith, not by sight"?
Didn't Jesus say, "Do not fear, only believe"?
Didn't Jesus also say, "Be as wise as serpents and as innocent as doves?"
Hey, we got your serpents and doves right here. Boatloads of them are making their way, even as we speak, to Anaheim.
When she says we want to move 'beyond B033,' that doesn't mean that we won't work for a full repeal of B033 as well as an apology.
What that means is that there are 'pragmatic realities' to the art and science of political activism at General Convention. We'll move 'beyond B033' any way we can that makes it perfectly clear to all the world that we 'ain't gonna let nobody turn me around' and violate our own canons against discrimination.
There are no ramparts to station and no barricades to storm at General Convention. There IS lots and lots of gentle persuasion, modified by appropriate firm pressure and hours and hours of 'face time'. That, eventually, will win the day - no matter where we end up on the 'bottom line' of justice.
And, you know, that's the point of this Triennial exercise we call General Convention. We all have our 'bottom line' of justice - the goals we wish to accomplish. The things we want done and the things we do not want left undone - before the next Triennium.
The thing of it is that those who are elected to General Convention are called 'deputies' and not 'delegates'. Those who are activists and lobyists are delegates, of a sort, who represent a particular constituency and agenda.
The theology of our polity is that no one is elected to represent a constituency. Deputies are elected to be open to the work of the Holy Spirit.
That's the deal.
We are all there to accomplish God's 'bottom line' of justice and mercy and peace - in God's own way and in God's own time and, with the help of God - despite our variously and passionately held 'bottom line' understanding of justice and mercy and peace.
The bishops represented in this video are standing at that 'bottom line' which places us in better standing than we have been in years.
Want to know my over-arching strategy for General Convention? To quote Mother Jones, "Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living."
Can I have an 'Amen'?
Okay, now everybody - BREATHE!!