Thinking Anglicans

second big weekend in Virginia

The first one was here. And the statement of the ACC Secretary General in the matter of CANA’s ecclesiastical status was reported yesterday.

This weekend voting concludes in the two big parishes, The Falls Church and Truro Church, and there is some excitement in the air. See also the comments to that post for some descriptions of last Sunday. At another parish the voting is over and the result declared.

Detailed instructions have been issued to the media in anticipation of extensive coverage tomorrow. That PDF is also available as html, here.

Some very strong stuff indeed appeared Thursday in the Falls Church News-Press:
F.C. Episcopal to Report Results of Vote to Defect Sunday
Nicholas F. Benton: An ‘Old South’ Backlash
Editorial: Descent Into The Abyss

The Living Church has published two further reports:
Secretary General of ACC Clarifies Communion Status of CANA
Virginia Diocese Questions Voting Procedure

If like me you were puzzled as to why the diocese cared about the voting procedure details, this comment on titusonenine explains.

The Clergy and Wardens of the Church of the Apostles, Fairfax, Virginia, wrote a letter to Bishop Peter Lee which you can read in full here.

The perception of Truro Church leadership concerning CANA’s Anglican District of Virginia are contained in this PDF file.

The Washington Times had this detailed report by Julia Duin today: Diocese faces exodus of flock.

And if you are wondering about whether Virginia law is clear about the ownership of parish church property this note by Jim Naughton On church property may confuse you further.

Further update: some useful background statistics on the voting numbers involved can be found here.

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Annie
14 years ago

I’m concerned about the voting procedures. I wonder what notice has been given to the congregants in advance and, most especially, if notice of the meeting was done above-board, publicly published. When the vote is turned in, I would very much like to see the total number of congregants of each parish and percentage that voted.

Cynthia Gilliatt
Cynthia Gilliatt
14 years ago

I read the instructions for the press and will now show my ignorance. What is a ‘mult box?’

Simon Sarmiento
14 years ago

Cynthia, it’s a device into which broadcast reporters can plug in jacks to pick up audio from the institution’s sound system.

Dave
Dave
14 years ago

How about this hysterical comment in the FCNP Editorial: “If this week’s vote results in the departure of Falls Church Episcopal from the Episcopal denomination, the church will go down in infamy as a regrettable and despised bastion of bigotry, prejudice and hatred.”

What a load of c**p! I’m sure that the Editor also has moral views on sex, and yet doesn’t believe that (s)he is bigotted, or hates everyone whose sexual desires or behaviour *(s)he* disapproves of!

This almost marxist dialectic is the sort of hate speech that is inciting real hatred and vilication…. of ‘conservative’ Anglicans!

Byron
Byron
14 years ago

The editorials from the Falls Church newspapers are spot on. Let’s hope those who remain faithful non-schismatic Episcopalians find homes in new inclusive local parishes – time for some missionary activity in northern Virginia.

counterlight
counterlight
14 years ago

I’m concerned about those 6 in All Saints’ Church who voted against leaving the Episcopal Church.

I too think the editorials were right on and spot on.

Leonardo Ricardo
14 years ago

“…sort of hate speech that is inciting real hatred and vilication.” Dave Yep, the kinda viscious speech/actions directed against LGBT Christians that encourages crimes of HATE in Uganda/Nigeria and way down South in “Dixieland/Networksville” everyday of the week (with the additional “gag” feature of pending Anglican Church/Akinolan backed-up anti-Human Rights legislation that will ENHANCE fear and hate in Nigeria)! Those self-pityfilled and poor misunderstood puritans…rarely have they fully realized how it *was/is* to be marginalized,loathed and despised even within their own Church…but, THEY are getting *it* BIGTIME as puritans keep up with the bigoted nonsense while simultaneously moaning about the… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

It will dear Dave, and remember, this is not the 1930-ies or 1960-ies anymore. Who did what or didn’t in Europe of the 30ies and 40ies or in the USA of the 60ies is overlooked because only the closest mourners have a clue. In fact few of them – if any – have ever said anything to their children and grand-children. (In my case personally, my grand-parents told me things they never ever let their children even suspect) But today we have the Internet to record everything we do or don’t. And what’s written in cyber space will be there… Read more »

Robert Christian
Robert Christian
14 years ago

I agree Byron. I would also like to see at least the historic structures vacated for those who remain in TEC.

I’ve often thought if we did as much reaching out as politicking our pews would be filled. Instead of worrying about who’s leaving let’s build up the church with radical hospitality and a hopeful future.

Peace

JPM
JPM
14 years ago

Dave, I can understand why you find that editorial offensive, but that really is how many, if not most, people view fundagelicals.

Dave
Dave
14 years ago

Dear Leonardo, Puritans *were* badly persecuted in the UK… many left to found a new world in America! However I don’t think that many people in the Falls Church are real puritans. Just Christians who believe in the authority of the teachings of the New Testament on matters of Christian faith and [moral] conduct. Given that the NT teaches that sin cuts you off from God, and that “homosexuality” (as it was then understood) is condemned as one of many sinful behaviours, it is hardly surprising that they cannot continue in association with a church and diocese that has recently… Read more »

Dave
Dave
14 years ago

Dear JPM, yes. And that sort of twisting words to vilify people is extremely dangerous – only one step from persecution and witch-hunts. It has been used very successfully in the last hundred years by several very unsavoury regimes round the world to separate groups from society and then oppress or do away with them.

If people want to disagree vehemently with Christians who uphold traditional/biblical morality, they could at least have the decency to admit that we are genuinely trying to be loving while upholding our moral beliefs… rather than accusing Christians of “hate” when they patently don’t.

Matt
14 years ago

The Falls-Church editorial is neither well-written nor particularly interesting. I’ve decided to ignore it.

DGus
DGus
14 years ago

Dear Annie: Your concerns about notice of the vote being adequately given to the congregation can all be satisfied by reference to the publicly available info: Yes, the vote was well publicized — not just in a manner adequate to satisfy the local canons (which require only notice at a Sunday morning meeting a few days in advance), but repeatedly, redundantly, two months in advance, weekly for some time in the Sunday bulletin and orally in all services, repeated in multiple mailings and e-mailings, followed up (in the case of the Falls Church, at least) by a “phone tree” campaign… Read more »

Merseymike
Merseymike
14 years ago

It’s really quite pathetic watching fundies trying to present themselves as victims. Not only deluded, but paranoid as well.

drdanfee
drdanfee
14 years ago

Yeah the righter wing of conformed believers in Virginia has quite a tricky balancing act to manage now, hewing to their loud-high classical condemnation fashions on the one hand, and yet on the other hand having to more carefully manage that classical condemnation as it slowly devolves, letting go of precisely those legacy powers to sanction or punish or interfere which were previously just the ticket. Aside from directly and indirectly trying to interfere with queer folks (or other folks) just getting on with the best in their lives, including of course the best queer stuff, just what is the… Read more »

Andrew
Andrew
14 years ago

The Falls Church News-Press reflects not only common sense, and indeed the tolerance for which the Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion has long been celebrated, but what may be more important, the overall take of the coming generation. Perhaps it is among young adults that TEC needs to seek its new adherents. As for the issue of Jesus as the only way to salvation, has this not been discussed at very high theological levels over the past 25 years? If I recollect, the previous Pope, with the present one as counselor, issued statements supporting God’s unbroken covenant with the Jews,… Read more »

Cynthia Gilliatt
Cynthia Gilliatt
14 years ago

“”homosexuality” (as it was then understood) is condemned as one of many sinful behaviours, it is hardly surprising that they cannot continue in association with a church and diocese that has recently started affirming same-sex sexual relationships.” I am not sure why the “” on homosexuality or what is meant by “as it was then understood.” The rest of the sentence is in error: TEC, in the resolution on same sex blessings in ’03 did not ‘affirm’ anything. It simply stated the fact that in some dioceses they in fact are affirmed. Recognizing a fact is not affirming a practice,… Read more »

JPM
JPM
14 years ago

>>>Puritans *were* badly persecuted in the UK… many left to found a new world in America! And what did they immediately do upon arriving in the New World? They set about persecuting others, and then turned on one another. There’s a lesson in this. >>>”homosexuality” (as it was then understood) is condemned as one of many sinful behaviours Then why don’t the so-called orthodox condemn those other sins? Homosexuality seems to be the only one they care much about, perhaps because they, for the most part, can condemn it without condeming themselves, whereas denouncing greed or self-righteousness or remarriage after… Read more »

Cynthia Gilliatt
Cynthia Gilliatt
14 years ago

” ‘Puritans *were* badly persecuted in the UK… many left to found a new world in America!” Quite true about the persecution. “And what did they immediately do upon arriving in the New World? They set about persecuting others, and then turned on one another. There’s a lesson in this.” Also true – they drove Roger Williams out to found Rhode Island. They were responsible for one of the last horrible outbreaks of witch hysteria, and the tortured deaths of many women who were sent to their deaths on the basis of dubious testimony even for those fear-fraught and superstitious… Read more »

John D
John D
14 years ago

It is absolutely untrue that the diocese of Virginia has “authorised” same-sex blessings.Poor +Lee consented to +Robinson’s election, and there’s been hell to pay ever since. Perhaps, if we could ship +Minns+ back to the old country and keep Lord Carey there, as well, Virginia could declare peace and the two estimable gentlemen might pass the rest of their days cavorting with the Covenanting fundagelicals.

Dave
Dave
14 years ago

Cynthia Gilliatt wrote. “TEC, in the resolution on same sex blessings in ’03 did not ‘affirm’ anything. It simply stated the fact that in some dioceses they in fact are affirmed. Recognizing a fact is not affirming a practice, and to say so is either sloppy or disingenuous thinking and writing.” Dear Cynthia, I think that is very disingenuous, and I can’t imagine that you will find many people other than TEC’s politicos who would agree with you. Voting to recognise something is accepting that it exists, isn’t it? And “consecrating” of a man who was living in a same-sex… Read more »

Dave
Dave
14 years ago

Dear JPM, If you read what I wrote, you will notice that I said that the folk at Falls are *not* Puritans! As for persecution, I don’t think that you can justify the persecution of the English Puritans on the basis that they subsequently did it to other people.. Sounds like you are arguing for “Do unto others before they do it unto thee!” I think you will find that most conservative Anglican statements on sexuality are careful to set homosexuality in the context of all sexualities and sexual behaviours, many of which are condemned in the Bible as perversions,… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

Cynthia Gilliatt wrote: “… many women who were sent to their deaths on the basis of dubious testimony even for those fear-fraught and superstitious times.” It is not a question of “those times”. The Middle Ages believed in Black magic; that is in doing wilful damage to the group; to Society, by superstitions “acts”, and by spreading (libellous) rumours about such superstitious “acts”. The Renaissance belief in “witchcraft” as something “r e a l” (in the World of Ideas) was taught. Taught by Neo Platonist Academies – rejected by Aristotelian ones. To wit, there were witch-hunts only in those parts… Read more »

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

It amazes me Dave, that you do not see that in the year of Grace 2006 “Hell” (not that there is one) must “have a predominantly Northern American population”, just as in 1945 it had a predominantly German population.

Merseymike
Merseymike
14 years ago

Dave ; if heaven is full of your mob, and your thoroughly nasty god and its ‘jesus’, then hell, here I come!

JPM
JPM
14 years ago

>>>Dear JPM, If you read what I wrote, you will notice that I said that the folk at Falls are *not* Puritans! Sure. My point had to do with the inevitable result of purity movements. >>>As for persecution, I don’t think that you can justify the persecution of the English Puritans on the basis that they subsequently did it to other people. No, I don’t believe in persecuting anyone. Again, my point had to do with the logical end of movements based on exclusion. >>>I think you will find that most conservative Anglican statements on sexuality are careful to set… Read more »

StAndTheolStud
14 years ago

JPM, “When they condemn remarriage after divorce, or greed, or unjust wars, or other popular sins, then I might believe that they are consistent.” The evangelical churches I have been to (namely, Truro and The Falls Church) do in fact both condemn these things, are teach that God is gracious to those guilty of them. The difference between these things and the morality of homosexual actions is that these things are pretty well condemned by everyone one, and so don’t cause huge fights that cause publicity. Same-sex unions however, even if not officially approved by TEC, are recognized as part… Read more »

David Huff
David Huff
14 years ago

Dave wrote, “Puritans *were* badly persecuted in the UK… many left to found a new world in America!” Yes, and, sadly, we North Americans been paying for it ever since. The successful importation of Puritanism to the New World is one of the most regrettable chapters in our early history. and then, “…they could at least have the decency to admit that we are genuinely trying to be loving while upholding our moral beliefs… rather than accusing Christians of “hate” when they patently don’t.” You’re right. I don’t know how many of the extremist types actually hate our GLBT brothers… Read more »

Merseymike
Merseymike
14 years ago

But they are also people who live within relationships, and if they cannot be accepted and celebrated, well, that’s negative judgment as far as I am concerned.

I’m not prepared to accept conditional second-best

Dave
Dave
14 years ago

David Huff wrote: “I don’t know how many of the extremist types actually hate our GLBT brothers & sisters, as I can’t see into their hearts. But I certainly *can* accuse them of blatant bigotry, which they patently DO exhibit.”

Dear David Huff, Hate, vilification and bigotry are not synonymous with ethics and morality: http://www.thinkinganglicans.org.uk/archives/002087.html#comments

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

“… vilification and bigotry are not synonymous with ethics and morality”

Well no, dear Dave. Which is why we object to them.

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

… and object to them being paraded as such.

Göran Koch-Swahne
14 years ago

Dear Dave, leaving aside the question of whether “homosexuality” is mentioned in the Bible (and where ;=), I fail to see how you make the connection between

a) “… homosexuality” (as it was then understood) …” and homosexuality as it is understood (= orientation) in late modernity?

b) “… one of many sinful behaviours …” and “… they cannot continue in association with … “?

Enlighten me!

Ford Elms
Ford Elms
14 years ago

“Hate, vilification and bigotry are not synonymous with ethics and morality”

Indeed, but in the experience of most gay people the first three are so often hidden under pious expressions of the latter two that we really have a hard time trusting that they aren’t there. Even on these boards, people who have been arguing morality and ethics have let the shield drop and revealed the hatred and bigotry underlying their oh so pious comments. The Bible is often used to justify attitudes and behaviours that are anything but Christian.

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