Thinking Anglicans

Tom talks to Ruth

Ruth Gledhill has an exclusive interview with the Bishop of Durham Tom Wright. You can read it on her blog under the headline Primates: Schismatics to be “pruned from the branch”.

Three excerpts:

…He was quite unequivocal. He said too many in TEC are guilty of “doctrinal indifferentism.” The Covenant Design Group in Nassau successfully produced a good document, he said. The Primates have little choice but to follow Windsor at the meeting next week. And if Windsor is followed, then Gene Robinson and those who consecrated him should voluntarily absent themselves from the councils of the Communion, including the Lambeth Conference, unless they express regret in the terms set out in Windsor. Only a Windsor-rooted response in Tanzania can save the Communion from schism. “Almost everybody involved with this question recognises that there is no way forward from here without pain. It is painful for everybody. There are not going to be winners and losers. There are going to be losers category one, two, three, four and five…”

And:

“…The question is, is there any solution that a solid central ground will assemble around? My view is that it would be a solution based on the Windsor Report and what has flowed from it. It is the only thing on the table. If we are going to scrap that we would have to go back three years to start all over again. The solution would consist of the Primates accepting what the Covenant Drafting Group did in Nassau. The word is they made good progress at that meeting. I assume that means they will have something to put before the Primates. Then the question is how far that can be taken and how soon. I assume the immediate plan is to take it to Lambeth 2008. There is also the question of what the provinces will say about it.

“The more sharp-edged question is who is seen to be speaking for the American evangelicals. Rowan has invited to Dar Es Salaam two of the leading Windsor bishops, the ones holding the ground around the Windsor report, who are not secceding and going to Nigeria but who are not going to waver in the terms that Ecusa got it wrong and it is still getting it wrong and needs to be called to order. The question is how that is going to be resolved in the first few days of the meeting. I do not have a game plan on how that is going to work. Rowan is head and shoulders above all of them in terms of his wisdom and ability. He listens extremely carefully to everybody and then goes away and prays about it. He is never an uncritical listener. There is noone who Rowan will allow to tell him what to do. He will think and pray through everything that he hears. His commitment is to work for the unity of the Church and the advancement of the Gospel. Those who want to go and do their own thing do not like it when the Archbishop of Canterbury says the unity of the Church means you cannot…”

And this:

“…If the Anglican Communion, and particularly the American church and others like it, can be renewed according to the pattern of the Windsor Report, which is of course according to the pattern of Scripture, then those who are looking to foreign jurisdictions will find a way to come back into the fold. Then there would be a sigh of relief all round. In American there are dozens of breakaway bits and pieces, it is confusing and very messy. It is very American. But it is very unhelpful to the cause of the Church and the Gospel. As for what would happen to Gene Robinson? Pass. I really do not think there is a good answer to that one. The Windsor Report quotes the Archbishop of Canterbury himself saying in 2003 that if Robinson were in most other provinces of the Anglican Communion, he certainly could not be a bishop. As a priest he would be under discipline because of what has happened in terms of his marriage and partnership. In most provinces he could not have been a bishop. Therefore to ask other provinces to come to Lambeth and accept Gene Robinson as one of their number is a very big ask…”

Read the whole interview.

72 comments

  • David Bieler says:

    If +Durham thinks that +Pittsburgh represent the Windsor rooted center of the Episcopal he eiether hasn’t paid attention to documents readily available here or is as woudl say “looney tunes.”

  • Well, I read the article. I have no doubt that Bishop Wright is a far finer Biblical scholar than I. I have no doubt that he is no “scholar” of the difficulties facing the Anglican Communion and (as he notes, among others) The Episcopal Church.

    First, to equate Bishop Duncan and Bishop MacPherson in their commitment to The Episcopal Church is simply inaccurate. Bishop Duncan has expressed his willingness to leave the institution of The Episcopal Church, and has by his statements and by his support of actions changing the canons of his diocese has amply demonstrated it. Bishop MacPherson may be “Windsor-compliant” in the terms of the Camp Allen meetings; but by his acceptance of election as Chair of the Presiding Bishop’s Council of Advise he has demonstrated his readiness to continue in The Episcopal Church.

    Second, I reviewed the paper linked from the interview, and found this definition: “doctrinal indifferentism — that attitude which regards the individual’s or church’s experience of Christ as essentially separable from, more important than, or even opposed to, a clear understanding of his person and work….” Surely Bishop Wright has been listening to schismatics and not to any of the progressive bishops or scholars. It is precisely the ministry of Jesus, and the commitment to his statement, “I have not lost any of those you gave me,” that is central to acceptance of homosexual persons into the full life of the Church. It is acceptance of the word to Peter, “What I have cleansed you shall not call unclean,” that has called us to this point.

    More annoying is the title given to the article. It bears no relation to the content. Bishop Wright suggested no specific prediction of the meeting, much less that he had either heard such an assumption from the Primates or that he might give such instruction to the Primates. On the other hand, that’s the kind of provocative remark that sells papers, and that I have seen before from Ms. Gledhill.

  • dmitri says:

    If the Windsor Report is the only thing on the table then the AC really is finished. The GS Primates have already torn it to shreds by moving onto US territory with their missionary endeavors. TEC couldn’t agree on anything but partial compliance with it at General Convention and the much touted growing assembly of “Windsor Compliant bishops” turned up only 19 of them.
    Are we to assume that Rowan should invite only 19 TEC bishops and none from Nigeria, Bolivia, Uganda, Rwanda Singapore etc? A Windsor communion wouldn’t amount to much after all.

    It sounds as if NT W has invested too much of himself in that obviously flawed document.

  • Charlotte says:

    The Daily Telegraph had the right idea. (First time in my life I’ve ever said that!)

    Let’s just let the Anglican Communion fade away.

    If some of you want to share the table with some of us, that’s fine, but the bickering and bullying among the Primates and Primatial wanna-bes are doing much to convince the rising generation that the Christian religion is totally false.

  • Merseymike says:

    But, Charlotte, I think the conservative version of it is exactly that. False. Wrong. Harmful.

    Lets let the conservatives do as they wish and start something new.

  • Dennis says:

    Tom Wright is spinning expectations. It is a common political ploy but shameful when practiced by a bishop of the church.

    And Ruth’s scorn toward the Episcopal Church is long documented.

    However this all breaks apart, I’m ready for the lunacy to end.

    When the Episcopal Church sets up shop in his neighborhood for a new Episcopal Diocese of Durham, I’m sure he’ll be happy to sell all of his empty church buildings to a new planting of a growing and inclusive church. Perhaps when his little bitter GS party has withered away and the rightward shifting CofE with it he’ll come knocking in hopes of being grafted back on to a retirement subsidy from someone, anyone.

  • John Henry says:

    “Rowan has invited to Dar Es Salaam two of the leading Windsor bishops, the ones holding the ground around the Windsor report, who are not secceding and going to Nigeria but who are not going to waver in the terms that Ecusa got it wrong and it is still getting it wrong and needs to be called to order.”

    Who is +Tom Dunelm referring to? Is it +Bob Duncan? If so, he needs to have his head examined.
    +Duncan is nothing but malignant schismatic who should have been deposed for breaking his ordination vows, attempting as he does to take the Pittsburgh Diocese out of TEC–property and all. “Thuggery” seems to be his only agenda, apart from his hatered toward gays and lesbians. Of course, he meets on occasion with the “Merry Warrior,” GW Bush, both of whom are beneficiaries of the largess of corrupt U.S. Right Wing foundations.

  • Pluralist says:

    _There is no one who Rowan will allow to tell him what to do._

    It seems to me that some more than others have been telling him what to do (including, no doubt, Tom Wright) – or they will act.

    _His commitment is to work for the unity of the Church and the advancement of the Gospel._

    He is acting for a unity of some of the Church, but not all of it – by the very expectation that it will indeed divide.

    _When there is some kind of parting of the ways it is always painful for everybody. …rootedness of the Anglican Communion in Scripture and tradition, that by doing its reasoning work wisely, this will enable it to come up strong after this crisis. Even if it means a bit of pruning, the plant will be healthier for it. …anything that needs pruning will not be lost but grafted back on sooner or later._

    There will be parting of the waves, but it is not pruning. The other plant will continue to function. There will be a then a variety of the species, and find others like it with which to mate and blossom. The grafting won’t be to Tom Wright’s liking, with plants of other varieties found in Canada, Scotland, Wales, parts of England…

    Doctrine is already compromised, already more symbolic, already moved on. It’s too late on this one, and bending arguments to fit in with some preset limit won’t work any more. The theology in the universities won’t go away. However, you can still be “orthodox” on an older understanding and accept the full role of gay people in ministry and Church as nowhere is this ruled out.

    I’m sure the Nigerians won’t be satisfied by this centrism anyway. They are the ones making a structural invasion into the United States, and maybe anywhere. The Episcopalians will make new associates, and I for one wish the American Church every good wish. The ecumenical potential is also there. But the English situation is likely to be one hell of a mess for a while due to its parties and lack of consistency.

  • laurence says:

    As for what would happen to Gene Robinson? Pass. I really do not think there is a good answer to that one. The Windsor Report quotes the Archbishop of Canterbury himself saying in 2003 that if Robinson were in most other provinces of the Anglican Communion, he certainly could not be a bishop. As a priest he would be under discipline because of what has happened in terms of his marriage and partnership. In most provinces he could not have been a bishop. Therefore to ask other provinces to come to Lambeth and accept Gene Robinson as one of their number is a very big ask…” Tom Wright

    What about the gay and divorced bishops and priests of the C of E Tom ?

    I wish Tom had never been madea bishop. I found him much more user friendly before. He seems to ahve become opinionated and unpleasant since consecration.

    All the Churches of the AC have gay people and gay clergy. Get real Grow up. The AC doesn’t deserve to survive if cannot drop the above pretence and accept the reaity of gay life all around you and within …..

    Tom seems to judege relationships by some pre-conceived rules, rather than by theri quality, their love. U am impressed taht Robinson , his former wife and children and Robinson’s partner all appear to get along well, and hold each other in friendship. How many CofE bishops could compare to this kind of openness and trust– they must ahve worked at it.

  • “If the Anglican Communion, and particularly the American church and others like it, can be renewed according to the pattern of the Windsor Report, which is of course according to the pattern of Scripture…”

    I balk at this. It implies that there is a single pattern of Scripture, that we have identified it, and that it is given expression in a bureaucratic church document. There is a short-circuit here that provides a poor basis for letting all voices be heard.

  • kieran crichton says:

    If the Windsor Report is all that’s left for discussion, then I say let’s be consistent, trash it and start again.

    Nobody has fully complied with it, particularly those demanding submission from TEC. Unless the Nigerians are going to be called to account for their border crossings (which is the more novel innovation of late), then I see no point in requiring anything of the Americans for simply following theological convictions that were already well established.

    Would this be happening to the CofE instead of TEC had Rowan Williams insisted on Jeffrey John becoming Bishop of Reading?

  • JCF says:

    “it would be a solution based on the Windsor Report and what has flowed from it. It is the only thing on the table. If we are going to scrap that we would have to go back three years to start all over again.”

    And he says this like it’s a bad thing?!

    Seriously: +Wright is SOOOOO *wrong*. He so does NOT get it (the “it” I speak of, is The Gospel). He is so the broken-off *splinter* saying that the living *branch* must be pruned!

    Oh well: God’s in God’s Heaven, the Holy Spirit is in TEC and, as a far better Anglican than Tom put it, “all shall be well, all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well”. Alleluia! 😀

  • Saturnius says:

    “Just let the Anglican Communion fade away”?

    Should we just let Christianity fade away too?

    If you’re a Christian you should be willing to stand up for Christianity, regardless of what other Christians do or don’t do. If you simply want to wash your hands of it, then you don’t deserve the name Christian.

    So then with Anglicanism. If you want to toss out the Anglican Church simply because of what other Anglicans are doing or not doing, you don’t deserve to be among them.

    What you’re proposing is not only foolish and cowardly, but completely uncharitable and–in a word–unchristian.

  • drdanfee says:

    Wow to think that the core conservative stuff of following Jesus is really pledged to be just this antigay. To think that this pledging is so egregiously aliented from being an embodied mammal, and from sex? I am starting for the first time to mull over how all this puritannical sex and body stuff is maybe a core image of some of what the doctrine of Original Sin points towards.

    What an anguished alienation, disowned via doctrines from the righteous conservative religious self that has repented of the parts of sex or embodiment which its feeble presuppositions do not permit it to contemplate and study and understand. What a wholesale projection outwards, upon and against those other people – who wish still to hold the doctrines in one hand rationally and critically while inquiring for understanding on the other hand, also rationally.

    Did God ever speak through empirical science to correct a mistaken or misunderstood piece of alleged legacy doctrine? The conformed answer is a loud, Of Course Not. Impossible.

    But these legacy conservative religious preachments about sex and about the body are very odd – insofar as they consistently help us to perpetuate the very alienation for which they so loudly are preached as the sole sacred remedy.

    I am bone weary of hearing that the gospel exclusively means I must above all else prop up other religious peoples’ perennially bad consciences about sex – and more deeply – about human fallibility and human embodiment.

    Are all of us who follow Jesus necessarily constrained for epochs yet to unfold by this sort of gospel to keep on confusing potty training frames with sexuality? But now, intentionally so, deliberately so? Our absolute and final worldwide confession?

    Watching this one will be fun in a darkly comic sort of way. Like a kitsch midnight movie.

  • drdanfee says:

    Guess what? The rest of us are not going back into the Closets, even if your rush to new conservative realignment transforms the worldwide Anglican communion into one of the largest institutional closets – comparable to the other largest faith communities? – possible. Nor are we going to stop following Jesus, just because your conscience is so weak it cannot bear to learn that it was mistaken about people who are not straight, not to mention being willing to correct its own legacy flat earth errors as it mis-understood so much about human sexuality and about the human body.

    Alas. It amounts to something painful to watch the family unable to cope with its own non-straight children; but again this is nothing knew on the whole that has not already been suffered, again and again and again, by so many real, alive particular people and families. The Jesus who saw those people and those families through, will surely still be around after Tanzania and after the next Lambeth.

    Sometimes the family needs to grow by mistakenly ostracizing its own, and later coming to regret it. Meanwhile, don’t bother counting on all the secret fashion fairies to help you make those awfully nice decorations for the next Lambeth to which none of us are now supposed to be invited.

  • NP says:

    Don’t you get it?
    +Duncan is no radical in AC terms – he is very mainstream.

    Remember the issue: TEC is facing the AC having deliberately ignored pleas to restrain itself from actions it was explicitly told would “tear the fabric of the communion” and consequences would follow – we are now seeing the consequences.

    Remember +Rowan comes from the left but no ABC is going to sacrifice 70m+ in the AC who broadly agree for the sake of the small nos supporting the actions of the TEC leadership since 2003.

    Pls launch TEC Global. Don’t be scared of being just a couple of million – it will be more dignified and honest to to have a unified liberal organisation (and then the AC can get on with its mission)

  • revkarenm+ says:

    Tom Wright’s words in this interview are stunning. He seems to have no understanding of the history or polity of TEC. Not to belabor what should be obvious, but TEC is governed by elected representatives, lay, clergy, and bishops. The final authority in TEC is the General Convention. No international body, and especially the Primates, has jurisdiction or authority over TEC. The fact that the Primates have “adopted” the Windsor Report (WR) has no binding force over anyone. Wright pretends not to understand that the WR is offered as a basis for international dialogue among the churches of the Communion. He insists that the WR, having been adopted by the mostly unelected Primates, is the only way forward, and that TEC must submit to the WR in correct language taken from the WR. TEC has shown that it is not about to submit to a self-appointed “authority”. According to Wright, Katherine Schori has been invited to the Primates’ meeting as a defendant who will be called upon to commit TEC to the WR or face an “invitation” to “voluntarily” withdraw most of the bishops of TEC from what are now misleadingly called the “Instruments of Communion”. I don’t think there will be a positive reaction in TEC to the call to submit to an unelected body of men, poised to shun the only elected woman in their midst, as they arrogate to themselves an authority not grounded in Scripture, tradition, or reason.

  • revkarenm+ says:

    Wright asks us to take him seriously, while he studiously avoids noting that the main offenders against the WR are the very Primates for whom he has become an apologist. The GS Primates have amply demonstrated their disregard for the WR in assigning to themselves churches, and, perhaps in the near future, dioceses in the US of “disaffected Episcopalians”, in contravention of the provisions of the WR, and of the Ecumenical Councils that the Anglican Church has recognized. The GS Primates have demonstrated no respect for the “listening process” of Lambeth 1998, which their leader observes by advocating legislation in Nigeria that will silence gay people with prison sentences. Who, besides Wright, cannot see the hypocrisy of bishops who claim that their rejection of gay unions and clergy is based on their unbiased faithfulness to Scripture, while they have found a way around Scripture for their divorces and their loans at interest? For Tom Wright to back these people with his now fading credibility as a Scripture scholar is embarrassing. If there will be schism in the Anglican Communion it will be for the same reason that the Christian churches have split over the centuries, viz. the abuse of episcopal authority. We in TEC may end up without the ABC and Tom Wright, but we will be left with our integrity, as well as the freedom for which Christ has made us free.

  • whb says:

    This “American Schismatic” is tired of funding the Anglican Communion when we seem to be no longer welcome by Cantuar el al. (perhaps our money is to help fund primates meetings, Lambeths). The Episcopal Church began after the American Revolution and before the Church of England ever gave us a bishop – we can do just fine on our own thanks to the Episcopal Church of Scotland those many years ago who gave us our Catholic Orders.

    And just to remind everyone – the Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in our realm and neither does the Bishop of Durham. He should tend to his own See and mind his own bloody business. And perhaps take a class in liturgics since I would imagine he isn’t very good at it.

  • NP says:

    whb – great – pls take your cash and go launch TEC Global

    (the money will last a few decades – but by then, at your current TEC decline rates, there won’t be much need for buildings etc……so it all makes sense)

    pls note – African Primates may not have the richest provinces but they are very clear that they will not sell their principles for US$

  • Fr Joseph O’Leary quoted +NT Wright: “If the Anglican Communion, and particularly the American church and others like it, can be renewed according to the pattern of the Windsor Report, which is of course according to the pattern of Scripture…”

    and commented: “I balk at this. It implies that there is a single pattern of Scripture, that we have identified it, and that it is given expression in a bureaucratic church document.

    There is a short-circuit here that provides a poor basis for letting all voices be heard.”

    It’s the short circuit from little boy Tom who helped update a book, to self-interpreting Bigwig NT who tells everybody his Windsor report is holy writ.

    Ruth did the little boy a disservice on this one, methinks.

    What I balk at is the “doctrinal indifferentism” thing:

    “doctrinal indifferentism — that attitude which regards the individual’s or church’s experience of Christ as essentially separable from, more important than, or even opposed to, a clear understanding of his person and work….”

    I am quite unable to decipher this but as “Only Evangelicals Are Human Beings”.

    Please show me I’m wrong.

  • Christopher Shell says:

    Hi Laurence-
    You are asking for people to accept ‘the realtiy’ of gay life.
    This is especially puzzling, since it is the one thing that everyone quite obviously accepts already. If it were not a reality, then what is it that we are all talking about here?
    No-one has ever questioned whether it is a reality. They have questioned whether it is a good reality or a bad reality. This is quite a different question.
    But surely you knew that already?

  • mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) says:

    NP wrote
    pls note – African Primates may not have the richest provinces but they are very clear that they will not sell their principles for US$

    Eyup, NP – what you mean is that they won’t take gay-tainted dollars but will take oil-tainted dollars, even tho’ the corruption, violence and all the rest which seem to be connected with oil exploitation (anyone else remember Ken Saro-Wiwa) has done rather mre harm to Nigeria than any number of gay couplings.

    It’s all about which sort of ‘taint’ you acknowledge. I’d rather give gay dollars my vote than oily ones.

  • Rudy says:

    whb writes:

    “”This “American Schismatic” is tired of funding the Anglican Communion when we seem to be no longer welcome by Cantuar el al. (perhaps our money is to help fund primates meetings, Lambeths). The Episcopal Church began after the American Revolution and before the Church of England ever gave us a bishop – we can do just fine on our own””

    And you wonder why the world hates you bloody Americans?

    Take your filthy money and keep it.

  • Merseymike says:

    Frankly, Christopher, that’s not for you to decide – mind your own business, if that’s possible for conservative Christians!

  • C.B. says:

    Dear drdanfee -Thanks so much for making me laugh out loud and adding some delicous humor to this rather morbid escapade.

    “Are all of us who follow Jesus necessarily constrained for epochs yet to unfold by this sort of gospel to keep on confusing potty training frames with sexuality? But now, intentionally so, deliberately so? Our absolute and final worldwide confession?

    Watching this one will be fun in a darkly comic sort of way. Like a kitsch midnight movie.”

    Truly. We need more to lift our hearts in the coming weeks, lest we think God is not totally able to work His will even through this.

    C.B.

  • Craig Goodrich says:

    RevKaren: “No international body, and especially the Primates, has jurisdiction or authority over TEC.”

    Well, of course not; nobody is claiming they have. What the body does have, though, is a final say in who is a member of that body and who is not. And that’s all that is at issue here.

    “I don’t think there will be a positive reaction in TEC to the call to submit to an unelected body of men, poised to shun the only elected woman in their midst, …”

    If, on the other hand, the Primates were all elected, then, TEC would of course eagerly submit to them, especially if a male PB had been elected.

    “… as they arrogate to themselves an authority not grounded in Scripture, tradition, or reason.”

    I had rather thought that the doctrinal authority of councils of bishops had been pretty well established for a millennium and a half, but of course those bishops were all elected … err, no, I’m sorry… Well of course ECUSA had an opportunity to present a defense of its position in _To Set Our Hope …_ and we all know what a marvelously rigorous work of theology that was…

  • toujoursdan says:

    NP says: “whb – great – pls take your cash and go launch TEC Global

    (the money will last a few decades – but by then, at your current TEC decline rates, there won’t be much need for buildings etc……so it all makes sense)”

    Actually studies of TEC membership by Faith Communities Together have shown that the most progressive churches (as well as the most conservative parishes) in the TEC are growing, not declining. (See: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/documents/FACTs_on_Growth.pdf )

    The “decline rates” of the TEC are almost wholly attributed to parishes that have experienced a great degree of conflict. Once that conflict is gone, then that growth will continue.

  • NP says:

    Mynster – you have a point – even the CofE’s income and endowments are not all clean money…..but how would you respond to whb throwing weight around because TEC still happens to have a bit of cash?

  • Tony says:

    Rev. Karen, we’ve all heard this blather before:
    “Not to belabor what should be obvious, but TEC is governed by elected representatives, lay, clergy, and bishops. The final authority in TEC is the General Convention. No international body, and especially the Primates, has jurisdiction or authority over TEC. “

    The Primates gave ecusa three years to work things out according to ecusa’s polity; ecusa failed.

    btw – isn’t Jesus the final authority? And where does Scripture fit in these days on the authority hierarchy?

  • Erika Baker says:

    Am I the only one who is getting thoroughly tired of the gay debate on this forum? This is supposed to be about THINKING Anglicans, not slogan spouting ones. Could we maybe all agree that there is a huge body of eminent Anglican theological writing on both sides of the argument. It is therefore entirely possibly to hold either view with complete integrity. Maybe we can just agree to differ, to live side by side and leave the final judgement to God? I know that’s too much to ask in the public arena, but isn’t it something we ought to work for?

  • The Virginian says:

    To mynsterpriest:
    Is gay reality a good thing or a bad thing?
    Gee, I dunno, is heterosexual reality a good thing or a bad thing? I would have thought, ECUSA communicant that I am, that it depends. Can we not judge – if we must – on individual cases? Obviously mynsterpriest is expert judge-er. Is having black skin a good thing or a bad thing? How about having red hair? I have known not a few people who would say both are indications of bad-ness. This does seem like a dangerous path to wander down, but what do I–a heterosexual, white, brown-haired woman (bad!) know?

  • Craig Nelson says:

    I am reminded of Jesus speaking of the temple to his disciples “not one stone will be left …..” (notably as quoted by James Alison in his comments on our attitudes of being enthralled by the ‘sacred centre’).

    I am not sure how it came to be that certain extremists wanted rid of the American church come what may and why there is an unwillingness to try to live out this disagreement so that the truth may be discerned within the debate. After all it has been said that there needs to be a listening process and that the current view is not the final word. And it seems that the American Church is the only one to have really listened (they said there should be some listening but never for one moment expected there to be any. They asked for listening so their intolerance could get dressed up as open-mindedness).

    So what ought to be on offer is some sort of good faith compromise that allows for provinces to listen and develop while working out arrangements for relationships between provinces while that is happening.

    Whilst such an agreement is not impossible I am surely not alone to feel that we are in the earliest phase of a genuine division.

    Strange. Even stranger when you think that LGBT people and LGBT friendly congregations will be on both sides of the split.

    To return to Jesus’ words about the temple – the loss of the temple of the Anglican Communion will be very sad no doubt but surely Christianity and God (and in fact Anglicanism….) will go on.

  • Dennis says:

    Erika:

    No, we can’t stop talking about this issue, because the fundagelicals have decided that the only way to determine if someone is a Christian or not is to ask them what they think about gays and lesbians. With so many on one side of this ‘debate’ making this issue a touchstone, the signature and center of their doctrine, it simply won’t go away. And, on the other side, asking the gays and lesbians in the church to stop talking about it is to ask them to please go away, if only because discussing the issue is linked to defending a right to be in the church at all.

  • Dennis says:

    Rudy:

    This American lived in the UK twice. I understand that there is an enormous amount of misunderstanding nourished by cliches on both sides.

    But please understand that Americans in the Episcopal church do get a little tired of paying for most of the Anglican Consultative Council and other big ticket items and then being vilified in the communion. This doesn’t mean that people have to take the cash and shut up. But it does mean that we might be right to question the contribution. Perhaps, we wonder, more good could be done with this money in supporting hospitals and water cleaning systems and agricultural development, etc. It simply gets old to have to fund our own vilification and exclusion.

    The comment about everyone hating Americans may be a little over the top. Yes, because of the way the conservative administration has acted all over the world it is difficult (but remember though that Bush was/is supported by the same religious conservatives trying to split the Episcopal Church today).

    Now, I would remind you that the UK isn’t exactly loved throughout the world today, either. And not just for the support you have given that idiot Bush and his war in Iraq. Many problems in the Middle East and Africa were directly caused by British and French colonialism and imperialism in the 19th and 20th centuries. This isn’t to play the blame game. Rather, all of us in the developed world have lots of reasons to apologize and rebuild bridges to the rest of the world.

    I suspect that when this washes out there will still be ties between the English church and the church in North America. The ties of blood, language and outlook run too deep. That doesn’t mean that the hierarchy of the CofE wont run off with the Nigerians, but the rest of the CofE will likely see more in common with America and Canada and New Zealand and Scotland and South Africa and most of Australia than with Nigeria.

  • Erika Baker says:

    Dennis,
    The problem is that we don’t seem to be talking, we’re shouting, each side getting more and more self-righteous.
    I’m not asking for the issue to be burried, I’m asking for a pause in the shouting, for the genuine acceptance of the integrity of people on both sides of this debate.
    If we managed that, I would no longer have to feel that people are trying to push me out of my church. I agree with you – it is MY church too and I have a right to be in it.
    In the following silence we might learn to hear the still small voice a bit clearer.

  • Prior Aelred says:

    To The Virginian, Craig Nelson & Dennis (twice) — very fine posts — I thank you.

    The most charitable approach I can come up with to +Tom Dunelm’s highly emotional response to gay issues is a very negative experience in his childhood — otherwise, it is baffling — his commitment to his own opinions once expressed is breathtaking — how did Durham ever find a mitre big enough? I certainly highly respect his New Testament scholarship, but his view of The Episcopal Church & “the Americans” is too idiosyncratic to be taken seriously.

  • mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) says:

    The Virginian – I think you may have elided my post with the one above, crediting the ‘Gay reality’ comments in the first posting to me.

    Or I could be wrong and be suffering from male menopausal memory disorder!

  • mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) says:

    English (and I DO mean ‘English’) Christians who object to ‘the one who pays the piper calling the tune’ should remember should remember that the threat to withhold funds from projects/parishes which do not meet with approval has been made before. At least one of our posters from the ConsEv end has spoken of his (I think) longing for the day when the ConsEvs can shed the financial and missiological overburden of the rest of us.

  • Pluralist says:

    Graham Kings, theological secretary of Fulcrum (Tom Wright supports), has written: To Cleave or To Cleave? at

    http://www.fulcrum-anglican.org.uk/news/2007/newsletter13.cfm?doc=188

    in the Fulcrum Newsletter, February 2007

    and suggests there may need to be a creative interim measure of a ‘College of Windsor Bishops’ to oversee ‘Windsor compliant’ parishes and dioceses in The Episcopal Church, as in ACI’s proposal for an interium arrangement while awaiting a conciliar communion covenant.

    http://www.anglicancommunioninstitute.org/articles/2006/ACIProposal.html

    [quoting] a “college” of bishops and dioceses within TEC which will be recognized by the wider Communion… without this requiring either an alternative province or the intervention of bishops from outside the US…

    [end of quoting]

    It is pretty obvious to me (Pluralist) then that this Graham Kings thinks the structural “haemorrhaging” will go ahead regardless of the Covenant, and that producing a kind of recognised TEC within an (presumably) unrecognised TEC will give the Windsor process and Covenant some hope. Why? Because – and this is the bit that matters –

    [quote] in order to prevent a deeper ‘cleaving-apart’ in the whole Anglican Communion.

    This is the point, isn’t it. This is the context into which to put Tom Wright’s bad temper, delayed by Ruth Gledhill (and him?) presumably for effect. They are desperate to put TEC into the doghouse to hope that they can do enough to stop the Nigerians and others doing structural invasions because of the inevitable realignment knock-on effect.

    Yet, surely, TEC is not going accept such a two level Church – it is provinces that would opt into such a Covenant or not. If bits of TEC do it, so can bits of the C of E. I just think this Covenant is a dead duck before it quacks.

  • Charlotte says:

    Well, I don’t know how to say this, and I will probably blunder, but here’s the best I can:

    Watching all of this has been like being a small child hiding under the bed while Mommy and Daddy go at each other with the frying pan and the chair leg, beating each other bloody, night after night. And the small child says to itself: “It’s all my fault. I mean, they say they are fighting over me. So if I weren’t here, Mommy and Daddy would stop fighting and everything would be all right — isn’t that so?”

    Well, it isn’t so, but if the small child could get out of the abusive situation, there would be help for it, at least! Mommy and Daddy will never stop until they kill each other, but the child should not be victimized by their craziness and cruelty.

    So my thought is this: At this point, there is really no reason for anyone who is gay or lesbian, or a friend or relative of a gay or lesbian person, to stay in any Church in the Anglican Communion. It’s too vicious. Let’s leave Christian Mommy and Daddy to themselves for a while and see if we don’t do better without them.

    When I read people on the right-wing blogs drawing up plans to beggar the Episcopal Church through multiple drawn-out lawsuits, rubbing their hands with glee — it’s just awful. Makes me sick to my stomach to read that kind of thing — but then those of us whose parents or friends’ parents went through bitter divorces know exactly what that’s all about.

    So what say we just drop the whole Anglican Communion thing right now? Just walk out the door, get off on our own, and leave Christian Mommy and Daddy behind to slowly, viciously, beat each other to death.

  • Jerry Hannon says:

    Dennis wrote: “I suspect that when this washes out there will still be ties between the English church and the church in North America. The ties of blood, language and outlook run too deep. That doesn’t mean that the hierarchy of the CofE wont run off with the Nigerians, but the rest of the CofE will likely see more in common with America and Canada and New Zealand and Scotland and South Africa and most of Australia than with Nigeria.”

    To that I say a very loud “Amen,” and would add Wales, most of Ireland, most of Latin America, and a few parts of Africa where right-thinking bishops don’t have to fear for their lives, or livelihood.

    The Anglican Communion will simply be redefined, and those who recognize the fundamentalists as a basic danger to the Christian mission will choose to steer very clear of the GS crowd, as well as their European and American allies.

    It is not a matter of money.

    It is not a matter of numbers of parishioners.

    It is a matter of faith and belief.

  • “Hi Laurence-
    “You are asking for people to accept ‘the realtiy’ of gay life.
    “This is especially puzzling, since it is the one thing that everyone quite obviously accepts already. If it were not a reality, then what is it that we are all talking about here?
    No-one has ever questioned whether it is a reality. They have questioned whether it is a good reality or a bad reality. This is quite a different question.
    “But surely you knew that already?”

    Christopher, to realize how shameful that message is, just replace “gay” with “Jewish”:

    “Hi Laurence-
    “You are asking for people to accept ‘the reality’ of Jewish life.
    This is especially puzzling, since it is the one thing that everyone quite obviously accepts already. If it were not a reality, then what is it that we are all talking about here?
    No-one has ever questioned whether it is a reality. They have questioned whether it is a good reality or a bad reality. This is quite a different question.
    But surely you knew that already?”

    Sounds just like a Nazi, right?

  • JCF says:

    “a creative interim measure of a ‘College of Windsor Bishops’ to oversee ‘Windsor compliant’ parishes and dioceses in The Episcopal Church”

    And how, pray tell, does Kings think that ++KJS, the Executive Council, the HofB and, last but not least, General Convention (not to mention the “average layperson” like myself) are going to accept this . . . this . . . subversion?

    Two words: NOT HARDLY!

    Lord have mercy—Lord, uphold your servant Katharine on her travels/travails!

  • NP says:

    Mynster – where is the conflict in saying strong, growing churches in the CofE should not have to pay for the terminal decline of those who oppose them….and also saying, “TEC, pls keep your money, it cannot buy you influence”?

    There is no conflict here. There would be if I were saying TEC should not withhold funds from those who oppose them…..but most importantly, African provinces are not begging for TEC money even though some in TEC want to play that card for influence……anyway, TEC needs cash more to fund its last few decades of dwindling nos and income – luckily, they have money from people in the past who never imagined TEC would be hijacked as it has been – but that’s ok, even that money won’t last long when there is institutional decline.

    (still quite tragic to see some posts talking about being inclusive to appeal to outsiders despite all the evidence in the UK and US that “inclusive” ideas have led to decline consistently – for decades!

  • Charlotte is right as always.

  • Craig Goodrich wrote: ”What the body does have, though, is a final say in who is a member of that body and who is not. And that’s all that is at issue here.”

    This is now being repeated so often that I’m beginning to doubt it’s true. To accept as a new Member a (part of) a former Colonial Mission field is not “a final say in who is a member of that body and who is not”.

    It is to accept a Colonial Mission field as a full Member in the Body of Christ.

    So the Primates accept new Members but do not vote Provinces out.

    (and remember, TEC is a founder – without it not AC),

    Craig Goodrich wrote: ”I had rather thought that the doctrinal authority of councils of bishops had been pretty well established for a millennium and a half, but of course those bishops were all elected …”

    So they were indeed.

    Tradition being that the Head of State/Community Invested the Person chosen of the Church by Election. One-sided Appointing came late (17th century Calvinist State Absolutism in these lands).

  • Tony asked: “And where does Scripture fit in these days on the authority hierarchy?”

    It doesn’t – it never did. Unless, of course, you mean some Indo European Scripture.

    The Idea of Hierarchy is Indo European; Karma/Mocksha, Emanation, 10 concentric Heavens, flat Earth, Vale of Tears, The Highest Being.

    Not in the Bible.

  • Erika Baker asked: “Could we maybe all agree that there is a huge body of eminent Anglican theological writing on both sides of the argument.”

    NT Wright? Robert Gagnon?

    “It is therefore entirely possibly to hold either view with complete integrity.”

    Please do!

    “Maybe we can just agree to differ, to live side by side and leave the final judgement to God?”

    Sorry, not on the table, too late in the day. There is a concerted effort to break the Church asunder, which has chosen this non-issue as the presenting one.

    Only a few years ago a certain Dr Williams said the reason for this was obvious: You can attack a small minority with impunity, not a majority.

    Simple as that.

    And remember the 6 Phantom Categories excluded from Society and the Church by Lateran IV in 1215 – making ferocious example of marginal minorities invented for the purpose will discipline the majority into Godly obedience.

    It has been done before. Successfully.

  • Merseymike says:

    Charlotte: thats exactly the position I reached. I felt that to stay within the CofE as it stands would be to give support to institutionalised homophobia

    We desperately need to leave the AC behind so that people like NP, who I am not and would never wish to be in ‘communion’ with, can enjoy their temples of bigotry whilst we build something better.

  • mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) says:

    NP: if you cannot see the fascinating and revealing implications of this interesting juxtaposition, then I rest my case…. Except, perhaps, to comment that the GS churches are taking some very, very tainted money indeed.

  • Christopher Shell says:

    Hi Fr Joseph-
    One is born Jewish. You know that the genetics/environment issue is far more complex re homosexuals. More than 50% identical twins of self-styled gays are not themselves self-styled gays. By that criterion, being gay is less than 50% genetic.

  • Erika Baker says:

    No, Göran, I’m not saying we shouldn’t have views and that we shouldn’t express them.
    It’s the manner of the “debate” on this particular forum that I find occasionally upsetting.
    In my own small parish there are those who have entrenched views just “know” that they’re right. It’s pretty impossible to have a conversation with those people. Their likes are also represented on TA, their contributions characterised by excessive sacrasm, cynicism, not engaging with what the others have actually said, and personal attacks.
    There are also those who patiently try to have a real conversation and to listen to what each other is saying. They will start the talking with a particular view, but they are very prepared to be influenced by what the other side is saying. On TA too, there are those who will treat their opponents with respect and who will not be baited but engage gently with the arguments put forward.
    However strongly we feel, if we’re not prepared to treat those who debate with us with respect, if we don’t start by respecting their integrity – what are we doing here talking at all?
    On the world stage I sadly agree – that is no longer possible

  • laurence says:

    Charlotte –very helpful analysis- thanks. I think you have put it clearly. I’ve already left (though you’d never think so here ! You can take the boy out the church, but vice versa has been much harder for me! I can’t help caring about it, it seems). I have found a wonderful loving home and family in the R. Society of Friends.

    I f we all left with pur famileis and friends there’d be a huge hole in the AC –but I guess most / many folks couldnt do that.
    ***********************************************

    Joseph very, very telling point.

  • laurence says:

    PS
    I realize I didnt make it clear.

    I was referring (above) to Charlotte’s family dynamics analysis, and application to our woes.

    re a Windsor College and all that apart from making me think of a Windsor College of Short-hand & Typing —-

    it seems like anti-gay bishops will go to trememdous lengths to marginalise, demonise & silence lgbt folks, if they can’t exactly exclude us from the world or the Church.

    Just get get over it — & get on with …

  • NP says:

    mynster – you seem to think you are being clever or subtle but the fact remains that there is no LOGICAL objection to saying “we are not willing to waste our money by giving it to that person” and saying “we do not want your money” to TEC.

    SO – you are refusing and paying back CofE you may have benefited from – money which has come from various investments and some of which, way back, is also tainted by slavery and imperialism?

    This is a ridiculous argument!
    You seem to be complaining because the GS Primates have the integrity to say that they do not want to take TEC money because they are in severe disagreement with the TEC leaders.
    Given them a break!

    Surely, it would be much worse if they took the money while seeking to discipline the rebellious TEC? That would lack integrity!

  • mynsterpreost (=David Rowett) says:

    NP: the point is that when TEC starts to say, ‘Hmm, maybe our money would be better employed elsewhere’, the ConsEvs start to shout about blackmail and bully boy tactics (even if it’s unsuccessful) and suchlike, while using the same tactics themselves.

    That the GS have refused pink money I regard as principled: however, there seeems to be evidence that they’d secured their financial lines beforehand, making it less principled, more calculated. And as I have said, I prefer pink to bloodstained.

    Can’t see what’s ‘clever’ about that.

  • matthew hunt says:

    I was tempted to post this comment before, but have managed to restrain myself. I’m getting better at self-restraint and I’m trying and making great headway, but…

    The moment I hear anyone start talking about money in relation to ethics directly unrelated to those monies, I disregard anything they are saying. Money is irrelevant to the theological questions currently at issue and it is only attempted to be made relevant as some wierd attempt at extortion/blackmail/vote-buying/intimidation nonsense (by any ‘side’).

    Makes you worry for those for whom money is a real issue – the poor. Yes it’s awful for you, but you must accept my doctrine before I give you this lovely sirloin steak with all the trimmings. More rare claret vicar?

    -scary smile-

  • NP says:

    but mynster – my response to whb was “keep your money” – anyway, you have not answered my question about whb’s post: do you agree with the sentiment of it? (I doubt you do)

    Dear old African Primates – seems like they can do little right in the eyes of some – “wise as serpents” to seek other funds if you are going to refuse a certain source, is it not?

    And just on the subject of the GS, let’s remember they tolerated lots of “innovation” for the sake of unity for decades – until 2003 when TEC effectively stuck two fingers up to the AC, despite its clear pleas.

  • Ford Elms says:

    “being inclusive to appeal to outsiders”
    NP, who says this? Those who disagree with you are acting out of faith, not some desire to be popular. If you think otherwise, it is because you are believing the false witness of those who style themselves Conservative, and thus the enemies of the “Liberal” hoards they imagine are plotting to take over the Church. In so far as liberal Churches are in decline, and I do not accept this is the case, this is seen that you can’t speak God’s Truth and be accepted by the World. In fact, it is accepted that once the Church stops affirming the status quo of society, as She has done for the past 1700 years, then society will stop supporting Her, but that Truth is Truth, and God wants faithful parishes, not “successful” ones.

    As to money, we do not give because we agree with a particular political policy. What we give is not ours, it has been given by God, and we have a responsibility to give to others, to share the wealth He has shared with us. We should not go fat, or clothed, or accompanied while others are starving, naked, and alone. Cripes, that’s pretty basic. Besides, the GS has no need for money from TEC, they get quite enough from ultraconservative American Republicans, even some African bishops are now making reference to the way some of their fellows appear to have been seduced by this.

  • Dennis says:

    being enrolled in a clinical psychology doctoral program I’ve actually had a chance to look at those twin studies, including the ones examining homosexuality.

    Mr Christopher Shell, above, is, to put it bluntly, talking out of his backside. May I suggest that being honest with the statistics and the conclusion of studies is essential to being a contributing part of a conversation?

    And Christopher, if you were correct in your claims, you would still have only shown that the twin studies were correct in determining a large genetic part to being gay. Because with the general population showing a rate of homosexuality somewhere around 6 percent or so, having twin studies demonstrate a correlation in the upper 40s percentile would be very, very statistically significant.

    Your figures are off and your argument shows you’ve never taken a statistics or research methodology class. Quit twisting studies to try and demonize gays and lesbians.

    Conservatives wonder why they get the label of being uninformed and then they try to misuse science and research conclusions to back up their bigotry and hate. Gosh, it does seem that they sometimes deserve that label. Stick to the Flat-Earth Society Research Team. It really is a better fit to the anti-gay and anti-women arguments.

  • “Hi Fr Joseph-
    “One is born Jewish. You know that the genetics/environment issue is far more complex re homosexuals. More than 50% identical twins of self-styled gays are not themselves self-styled gays. By that criterion, being gay is less than 50% genetic”

    So antisemitism would be OK if Jews chose their miserable condition?

    As to the blatant homophobia of such a defence of your shameful remarks, I think it hardly needs to be pointed out.

  • Not to say how they sub-ordinate the sacred texts of the Bible to their late teachings, rubbishing them as “details” when one shows them what they really say.

  • Ford Elms says:

    “try to misuse science and research conclusions to back up their bigotry and hate.”

    Trouble is, they dress it up as science and otherwise sincere believers fall for it. No less a body than the Church of England fell for it in using Gagnon as one of their sources of “information” in formulating a stand on the issue of homosexuality. I only found that out a few days ago, and I’m still in disbelief. I sincerely, and perhaps arrogantly, believed that Anglicans were smarter than to get caught up in the kind of lying and propaganda that I associate more with Fundamentalists. I choose to take this as a lesson in humility.

  • Christopher Shell says:

    Hi Dennis-
    If you are able to make more sophisticated use of stats than me, then great!

    The place to demonstrate whether or not you indeed can do so (and I have no doubt that you can) is here. Molesworth in ‘How to be Topp’ and ‘Down wiv Skool’ was given to answering exam questions ‘Larfably easy’ and then not addressing the question. But you are no Molesworth.

    I just made one conclusion which appears not unjustified, and with which you do not quibble: on the above basis, less than 50% (ie a minority) of homosexuality is genetic. But it may well be a large minority.
    You will also have read last week’s survey that puts the homosexual figure at 3%; coupled with ‘bisexuals’ your 6% figure seems fine to me (split the difference).

    Hi Joseph-
    Antisemitism (which is just a subspecies of racism) would only be justified if it were justified intrinsically. Yet how could it be? It is a species of being opposed to actual people. Everybody on earth is opposed to certain *actions*; but no Christians should be opposed to any *people*. Being opposed to people strikes one as somewhat ultimate.

  • Ford Elms says:

    “just made one conclusion which appears not unjustified, and with which you do not quibble: on the above basis, less than 50% (ie a minority) of homosexuality is genetic.”

    Actually, Christopher, Dennis does not quibble with your statement, he demonstrates that you are misusing statistics, and in what way you are doing so. In short, he presents clearly why your “not unjustifiable” conclusion actually IS unjustifiable.

    And while this

    “Everybody on earth is opposed to certain *actions*; but no Christians should be opposed to any *people*.”
    is a laudable sentiment, its practical application is otherwise. We are often “opposed us to death” and by people who mouth these pious platitudes as their boots sink into our faces. Your avoidance of the role that conservative Christian vitriol plays in this does not give much weight to your argument, and makes your distinction between “people” and “actions” sound hollow.

  • Christopher Shell wrote: “… on the above basis, less than 50% (ie a minority) of homosexuality is genetic. But it may well be a large minority.”

    and this: “no Christians should be opposed to any *people*.”

    But, dear Christopher, How could you know anything about either? You are not even able to distinguish between 50% of a very complex property from 10% of a population sample?

    The statistics said 50% of Homosexuality (the property), you still thought it referred to 50% of the population (Homosexuals) BECAUSE YOU ARE TOO PHOBIC TO SEE THE DIFFERENCE.

    Slowly falling off my chair…

  • seeker says:

    The anti-semitism of Church liturgies, religious texts and much popular preaching and devotion concerns many of us. The old canard that Judaism is of Law while christinatiy is of grace is offensive and ignorant. Jews use the word Torah –Teaching, not law. On the other hand, the Christianity of the Churches is –as we see so lucidly now— very legalistic.

    How many church-goers have attended worship at a shul, read Jewish books, got a Jewish prayer book, listened to a sermon, sang Jewish hymns , kept any of the High Holy Days, red the Jewish Scriptures ?

    Shabbat shalom ! Go in the morning !

  • John Henry says:

    Ford Elms your observation is spot on:

    “Trouble is, they dress it up as science and otherwise sincere believers fall for it. No less a body than the Church of England fell for it in using Gagnon as one of their sources of ‘information’ in formulating a stand on the issue of homosexuality. I only found that out a few days ago, and I’m still in disbelief.”

    Shortly after the GC2003 +Tom Wright highly recommended Rob Gagnon as “the” authority on “the Bible and homosexuality”. As a result, the Bible-thumping folks in ECUSA, aligned with +Duncan and ++Akinola, brandish two blazing swords: cherry-picked passages from the OT and NT and Gagnon’s best-seller, The Bible and Homosexual Practice, as “the” litmus test as to who is in, or out of, heaven, called as they are to sit on the right hand of God judging “the living and the dead”.

  • I once looked at the Sodom and Gomorrah text with a gay Israeli — he had studied it in the “Bible” course in school and no one had noticed it had anything to do with homosexuality.

    There are lots of problems about the Old Testament, especially its divinely commanded genocides, but even some of the obiter dicta of the New Testament are impossible — Paul on the etiology of lesbianism, Jesus’s apparent approval of torture — and in those cases Inerrancy must mean the spiritual point the texts are trying to make not the flawed arguments or illustrations they create in the process.

    “Antisemitism .. is a species of being opposed to actual people. Everybody on earth is opposed to certain *actions*; but no Christians should be opposed to any *people*. Being opposed to people strikes one as somewhat ultimate.”

    Yet armchair homophobes are opposed to actual people and their attitudes translate into actual bullying in the schoolyard (or on the internet, the choice arena of bullies now) and oppressive conditions for gays generally. But the homophobes do not realise that their words have consequences at the level of actual sufferings of actual people. The people are not real to them. It is a bit like the smirking neocons who drafted the Iraq war — the victims were never real to them.

    You now say you are against actions, not people but your false arguments about genetics seemed intended to suggest that even the basic affectivity of gays and lesbians is a chosen behaviour rather than part of one’s being. All of this either betokens real ignorance of the realities of gay and lesbian experience, or affected ignorance.

  • Christopher Shell says:

    I was just puzzling as to how I was misusing the stats when Goran enlightened me.

    Now – if 50% (or somewhat under 50%) of homosexuality itself is genetic, and if homosexuals broadly speaking are homosexual for a variety of genetic and environmental reasons (and other reasons too, of there are any), then it is liekly to follow (on average) that a very similar percentage – ie 40-odd – of homosexuals are homosexual for primarily genetic reasons.

    For it would be unlikely that a minority cause for homosexuality itself would account for homosexuality in a majority of homosexuals.

    How ought someone non-phobic (as I thought I was, but you beg to differ) to interpret the statitics?

  • Well, perhaps your trouble is with the word “interpret”. You seem to think it means presenting an Answer – a definite, full and ETERNAL one.

    ;=)

    Now, I would say that there will be no such thing for human sexuality for at least 50 years.

    So any effort to present anything beforehand indicates agendas and special pleading.

    (and it seems that you play with figure would be equally valid/no for heterosexuality)

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