Our (Infrequently) Separated Brethren
The NYT's Laurie Goodstein reports on the quaint ceremonial by which U.S. Episcopalians will go through the motions of ritual hand-wringing before deciding that, once yet again, the Politburo was right:
The election last month of an openly gay bishop in the Episcopal diocese of New Hampshire is now threatening to crack open the long-existing fault line over homosexuality in the worldwide Anglican Communion, a global association of churches in 164 countries. In an open letter released yesterday, 24 conservative American bishops warned that they would join conservative leaders in Africa, Asia and South America and break ties with the Episcopal Church USA if it votes to confirm New Hampshire's chosen bishop, V. Gene Robinson, or if it endorses a separate resolution to create a blessing for same-sex unions. ... Episcopalians in the United States are set to vote on both issues at their convention in Minneapolis, which begins on July 30. Episcopal conventions are usually as brazenly political as a presidential primary, with lobbying and last-minute alliances. But this time the American bishops, priests and laypeople who will vote say the pressure on them is exceptionally intense.
The suspense is suffocating. Will Bishop Robison wear violet or crimson gaiters at his installation?
Both opponents and supporters of Bishop-elect Robinson agreed in interviews this week that he appeared to be headed for a victory. About 200 of the bishops and delegates who will vote at the convention have agreed to wear buttons saying, "Ask Me About Gene," and to offer testimony about his worthiness.
Somehow it's hard to imagine the council fathers gathered at Constantinople and Chalcedon wearing lapel tags saying, "Ask me about the hypostatic union." You've come a long way, baby.
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