Friday, August 01, 2003

Prelude to a Schism-I'm not sure if there has been a more important meeting of churchmen in my adulthood than the Episcopal Church's General Convention that started Wednesday. The big votes come next week on endorsing same-sex unions and confirming openly-homosexual Bishop Gene Robinson. Ben has the linkage. If those two items pass, the church will schism, with conservative parishes hooking up with more conservative bishops elsewhere. If I recall the strategy of the conservative churches, they will reaffiliate with Anglican churches in other countries, thus staying within the broad Anglican tradition but with different oversight, thus allowing them, in theory, to keep their churches. This will be messy, as liberals and conservative fight on a church-by-church basis. Mild-mannered churchgoers will have to face some hard truths about what the Christian faith means. People like George H.W. Bush will have to choose sides. Pray for the Episcopalians and the Church as a whole. Many mainline denominations have danced around the issues of sexual morality; may this be the first of many show-downs where people come to see that the Unitarian-light that many denominations on the left have become.

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