Thinking Anglicans

Windsor bishops: Western Louisiana spoke

The Bishop of Western Louisiana, Bruce MacPherson was one of those asked by Rowan Williams to make a presentation to the primates at Dar es Salaam on 15 February.

The text of what he said has been published in full here.

His diocese published a press release last October headed The Diocese of Western Louisiana becomes a “Windsor-compliant” diocese.

I have written twice previously about who are the Windsor bishops? and more on the Windsor statistics.

In his presentation Bishop MacPherson says:

…to speak on behalf of about twenty-four other diocesan bishops who share a common support and commitment to the process in which the Windsor Reports invites the Church to share in a journey leading to the development of a “common Anglican Covenant.” [WR117.p48]…

Later he says:

… we do not represent a small minority, but rather, we represent about twenty-five percent of the dioceses of The Episcopal Church, and a growing number of people beyond these borders..


  • Dennis says:

    Representing 24 other bishops does not equal representing twenty four dioceses and all of their members. Even if every communicant in those dioceses all agreed with him it would still not be the same. And the fact that there are many in each of those dioceses who are not in agreement with Windsor compliance menas that he only speaks for himself and 23 other men. Quite a mandate, there, Your Grace. Try and remember that in the Episcopal Church you may be the senior clergyman in your diocese, but we have no Lord Bishops in this church. And stop the funny math, too, while you are at it.

  • Bishop MacPherson’s presentation is quite interesting. He focuses on the Windsor Report, and says nothing of the Dromantine Communique. He references Lambeth 1998-1.10, but emphasizes its call for listening and support for GLBT persons. He states the majority of the Windsor bishops have no problem with ordaining women to all orders. He commits the Windsor bishops to remaining in the Episcopal Church, and to working with the House of Bishops for dissatisfied dioceses to remain within the Episcopal Church.

    Whatever issues these Windsor bishops may have in common with those Network bishops that have asked for “alternative oversight,” their positions are far from identical.

  • I am sorry, but no bishop can present him- or herself as representing all the people in his or her diocese. True, George Bush “represents” 300 million people, in one sense. With an approval rating at 38% or so, he doesn’t represent 300 million people well.

    No one quite knows what a Windsor bishop is, much less a Windsor Episcopalian. My guess is that the vast majority of Episcopalians have no interest in the Anglican Communion at all. Also, for many, the more they know about it, the less they think of it.

  • NP says:

    Using the logic above, people could claim that KJS does not represent TEC because she is not supported by all in TEC…….

  • Lapinbizarre says:

    Macpherson’s text emphasises the extent to which the deck was stacked against TEC in advance of the Tanzania conference. No interest in compromise here. Seventy-five per cent of the Episcopal Church – by his accounting – be damned! An undisguised stab in the back. Way down the page there’s the standard,pro-forma window-dressing of the throw-away nod in the direction of nurturing gays and lesbians “in their faith journey”. Whatever that means – precious little in bishop Macpherson’s case, one suspects. The hackneyed “hate the sin, love the sinner” formula brings out my stock reaction in this garbage – the observation of a former colleague on a co-worker – “It’s not his constant lying to me that I object to, it’s his assumption that I’m stupid enough to believe him”.

    The comments on the Macpherson posting present the usual interesting glimpse into the mind-set of Stand Firm aficionados. Rampant self-congratulation, cliché and conspiracy – “the LGBT community, perhaps 3% of the general population and much less than that of the Episcopal Church”.

    “Much less than that of the Episcopal Church”? Where in G-d’s name does this gentleman (“Edwin”, for the record) worship?

  • Prior Aelred says:

    Since when is less than 25% not a “small minority” — & as a priest canonically resident in the diocese of a “Windsor bishop” I can assure you that it does not mean that the diocesan reflects the position of all the baptized in the diocese.

  • JPM says:

    >>>My guess is that the vast majority of Episcopalians have no interest in the Anglican Communion at all. Also, for many, the more they know about it, the less they think of it.

    Very true. For many Episcopalians, their first awareness of “Anglicanism” came in the form of a bunch of angry foreigners issuing ultimatums and self-important English bishops flying over to scold us, like Bwana reproving the native houseboy who let the tea steep too long.

    If Rowan Williams is counting on the affection of average American pewsitters for Canterbury to save him, then he has made a serious miscalculation.

  • E. Piscopal Bear says:

    Dear JPM,

    just a quick observation…If +++Rowan is, in fact, counting on the affection of average American pewsitters for Canterbury to save him, then why hasn’t he taken a flight across the Pond to actually meet with said pewsitters? Makes one wonder.

    Yours in Christ,
    the Right Irreverent E. Piscopal Bear,
    Bishop of the Island of Misfit Toys

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