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Reaction Roundup for the TREC report

Reaction Roundup for the TREC report

As the most recent TREC paper continues to settle into people’s consciousness, reactions continue to pour in. We’ve rounded up several for your reading pleasure:

First up is Fr. Keith Voet, blogging at Young Curmudgeon Priest. He directly addresses concerns that some of the TREC proposals would ‘disempower the laity’ raised here at the Cafe, and refutes them.

Next, Tom Ferguson blogs at Crusty Old Dean.

COD thoroughly reviews the TREC paper, noting several places where the details of the proposed changes are worryingly scarce (i.e. only a few sentences are given to the budget).

However, he has cautious approval for changes like the proposal for reduced size of Convention deputations, and restricted voting in the House of Bishops…assuming Convention consents.

Along similar lines, the Rev. Susan Snook has been examining the budget side of things, and also has questions about some of TREC’s proposals. She’s writing a three-post series on her blog here .

In it, she points out that General Convention is hardly the most expensive item in the DMFS budget, and there are a variety of ways to streamline the governance of the church (addressing provinces, merging smaller dioceses, etc) that TREC doesn’t seem to have addressed as of yet.

The Rev. Scott Gunn, director of Forward Movement, also offers his thoughts over at Seven Whole Days. On the whole, he opines in favor of the report, especially the streamlining of Committees, Commissions, Agencys, and Boards (the dreaded CCABs.)—the better to free them to serve the entire church.

Finally, the Rev. Adam Trambley weighs in, at The Black Giraffe . Among other things, he specifically draws attention to the proposal to allow legislative committees to begin their work prior to General Convention, which would speed up the process considerably.

What other reactions are out there? Whose voice have we missed? Who have you been reading on this?


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Jared C. Cramer

I think the report is moving in the right direction, but I still think they can be thinking bigger:

Rod Gillis

From the Curmudgeon blog, “If our focus becomes less about politics and more about Jesus, justice is bound to follow.” This is a kind of slogan. It’s problematic form several points of view, not the least of which is the notion that justice is sure to follow by focusing more on Jesus and less on politics. Focusing on Jesus while focusing less on hunger, for example, is unlikely to lead to justice.

And this one, “We can not legislate people’s political attitudes and beliefs, but what we can do is preach the inclusive and holy Gospel of Jesus Christ and trust that the Holy Spirit will guide humanity into a new understanding of how we are to be towards God and one another.” How does one define an “inclusive Gospel” without specific reference to exclusion and marginalization?

I would be the first one to admit that passing resolutions at a church gathering does not necessarily create a more just community; but the debate over resolutions can require people, pro and con, to think more clearly about what justice and inclusion might actually look like in a given instance, require people to work at expressing a coherent and theologically grounded point of view.

Mark Harris

I have some thoughts on why I find TREC so unmoving, and some comments on recent paper at

Jim Naughton

I haven’t found anything on the Cafe which argues that TREC is “disempowering the laity.”

Nurya Parish

Thanks for the roundup! I’m off to read the ones I hadn’t discovered yet.

My thoughts are under the title “Restructuring for Discipleship” and are posted at

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