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What the MSM is saying about General Convention

What the MSM is saying about General Convention

The Mainstream Media (MSM) reports on General Convention. Sex and gender lead the stories, of course:

Chicago Tribune:

A proposal to expand the U.S. Episcopal Church’s nondiscrimination canons for the ordained ministry to include “gender identity and expression” passed its first hurdle on Thursday, when it won committee approval at the church’s General Convention.

Boston Globe:

Episcopalians, gathering this week in Indianapolis for their triennial General Convention, are expected to overwhelmingly approve trial use of a new liturgy for blessing same-sex unions.

The vote could prompt the bishop of Western Massachusetts, where Episcopal priests are still not allowed to bless or marry gay couples, to revisit his policy.

LA Times:

Sixteen years after allowing gays and lesbians to become priests, the Episcopal Church appears poised to introduce a rite that would specifically bless the unions of same-sex couples.

If the liturgy is approved, which is expected, Episcopalians will become the first major denomination to endorse such a ritual for homosexual couples.

On its face, the blessing seems similar to that of a marriage rite — including “I do,” “we have gathered together today” and an exchange of rings. Notably absent are the words “husband,” “wife” and “marriage.”

Philadelphia Inquirer:

Sixteen fractious years after it allowed the ordination of homosexuals, the Episcopal Church appears poised to adopt a blessing rite for same-sex couples wishing to wed.

Not about General Convention but good news from Iowa about the ministry of St Thomas Episcopal Church, led by our own Torey Lightcap! From KTIV-TV:

Once you exit the busy downtown of Sioux City, you’ll walk into some natural beauty. the community garden on douglas street, was a property once abandoned by its owner. now, it’s run by St. Thomas Episcopal Church and teeming with life…full of vegetables and flowers. after receiving grants from the city, it’s also an important part of the church’s ministry. “it gives it a sense of stabilization in a time that may be uncertain, properties disappear. and it also provides nutrition for our food pantry patrons. so, it’s the best of the situation that we can make it,” said Torey Lightcap, rector of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Sioux City. the church is currently in a contest with Deloach Gardening Magazine (click on woman with red sweatshirt) for top gardens. in the contest, the top five vote-getters will receive a share of the 20-thousand dollar grand prize.

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Howard Parr

No offense taken, Mr. Capaldo.  After all, you called me Mr. Parr, made up at least one new word in your remarks, and typed "lol."  It seems unlikely to me a mean-spirited person would do such things.  I am not theologian, scholar or clergy.  I'm just a nearly 50-year old guy sitting in a pew most Sundays who happens to think it's possible to accept that the Nicene Creed and the Lord's Prayer are expressions of fundamental truth without completely discrediting the faith infrastructure of billions of people.  One of the greatest things about being an Episcopalian is that I get to hold that position while experiencing the beauty and rhythm of our liturgy in a way that for me is deeply comforting and filled with grace.  And, of course, doing so without being under the threat of burning in hell is a nice bonus.  In any case, the original post had to do with coverage of GC by the mainstream media and I note, with absolutely no discomfort, that nobody is asking me to be a spokesperson.

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Nicole Porter

Fr. Richard,

Have we had a recession for the past 20 years? The past 10 years? With all due respect, if "wealthy dioceses" aren't paying, then maybe the leadership should do something about that. They can speak up on pet issues all day but when it comes to the the life of the church, quiet as a church mouse. Actually, the mice are louder...

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tgflux

Jesus or Christ, ChrisC? Yes.

Maybe we travel in different TEC circles, but I* have NEVER met any Episcopalians who value "Jesus the Man" over "the Christ of God (2nd Person of Trinity)"---though a few who gave signs of being the other way around.

JC Fisher

* And I'm a 50 yo cradle Pisky, who's been a member of parishes around the USA.

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Chris Capaldo

"the fundamentals of who we are - an institution that is based on teachings attributed to someone who was primarily concerned with treating every human being with equality and compassion."- No offense, Mr. Parr, but honestly I think that statement is very indicative of the problem. Not that any of that is a bad thing at all, but many many Episcopal churches seem to have that type of thought as the whole reason for their existence. That is to say, instead of a "Christo-centric" foundation, by that I mean one based on Jesus the Christ-The Son of God who takes away the sins of the world, etc... Many churches now have a "Jesu-centric" (I think I just made that world up, lol) foundation, that is one based on Jesus the Man- The really great guy who taught really awesome things that we should totally do too, etc... Though I believe that works of course are a wonderful thing, and a calling to all of us as Christians, the church really does need to have the foundation of being a place where one can become an actual "We believe in God the father almighty, etc..." credal Christian, which then by faith and the sacraments, one can be empowered to do good works for everyone. Yet it very much seems the opposite, for it seems either it's stuck in the 1950's mode of thinking were if just by the fact that someone shows up at church it OBVIOUSLY means their a full on believer of all the "faith" stuff, and thus now all they need is instructions on what to do next (work on the MDG's, plant a tree, etc). Or the church is trying to attract people by saying how much of an awesome guy he was, and then maybe if you feel like it you can pick up the whole "faith" thing later. Yet with that type of model, people might as well just grab a biography of Ghandi and feel just as fed by it! I guess what I'm saying is that the less we focus on church as a fueling station for Christians (faith first), and the more we try to make it a really expensive United Way with nice music and fellowship (works first), since you don't really need to go to church, or honestly believe anything to be a nice person, the more we just create the reason for our irrelevance and failure!

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Clint Davis

It is my impression that since we have solidified our consensus on GLBT inclusion (only really within the past couple of years)we've been either stabilizing or growing at a sustainable and reasonable rate, of course in parishes that are welcoming and active already, healthy and with capable, helpful leadership. It's all local, after all.

One thing that I feel must be emphasized in all this is that The Church emphasizes fidelity in all relationships, that the quality of the relationship is most important, that Jesus wasn't concerned that the woman had sex with 5 men, but that she'd had five failed marriages. Blessing same-sex unions is a step forward in grafting same-sex couples into a still conservative state of life.

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