I shouldn't be surprised. The LGBT in the Episcopal Church think that the world has somehow ended by the less than concrete resolution B-033. They also think that +Katharine Jefferts Schori is the enemy all of a sudden. Wrong.
Let's look at this a piece at a time. What exactly is the wording of B-033:
Resolution B003, "On the Election of Bishops"
Resolved, [the House of Deputies concurring,] that the 75th General Convention receive and embrace the Windsor Report's invitation to engage in a process of healing and reconciliation; and be it further
Resolved, that this Convention therefore call upon Standing Committees and bishops with jurisdiction to exercise restraint by not consenting to the consecration of any candidate to the episcopate whose manner of life presents a challenge to the wider church and will lead to further strains on communion.
Ok. There it is. And somewhere else it further states that the duration is for three years but that there is actually no time constraint set for the compliance of this resolution.
So it asks that restraint be exercised. What exactly does that mean?
The word itself is derived from "restrain" which in itself means: to hold back from action, check; suppress; curb; to keep under control; to limit.
Restraint: a loss or limitation of liberty; control of emotions, impulses; show reserve.
Given the immediate definition, I take it to mean that we should limit but not completely stop nominating clergy to become bishops with alleged iffy manners of life, which in reality applies to everyone because there is always some iffy thing in our lives, intended or not. Why? Because we are human. Period.
They aren't talking just about LGBT people, they are talking about women as well, because we have always been a challenge to the communion and we still are. We were bold enough to tell them where to put their challenge too, when we elected +Katharine as our next PB.
Every one on the planet has "a manner of life that presents a challenge" because what the challenge is, is left wide open. In other words they can name anything and call it a challenge. They may decide that wheelchairs present a challenge and stop people in wheelchairs from fully partaking of the blessings promised in our Baptismal Covenant. You get the picture. But they do not control us. The Anglican Communion's colonial attitude needs a big change and we apparently are the instrument of that change. And if there are strains on the communion, I don't feel them. Only those who wish for us to go back to the good ol' days of patriarchy and blind obedience feel the strain of change and innovation, not we who do the innovating toward a positive and fully inclusive future.
Just thinking about that makes me smile.
The other issue at hand is our Presiding Bishop elect, The Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori. The people who criticize her now haven't clue one about her. They don't know for instance that she was made to listen to some phone call on ++Frank's cell while standing in a hallway among some other bishops that were siding with the current PB. I believe that pressure was put to bear on the new PB's shoulders whether she wanted it or not. The Anglicans in England have been obviously busy interfering with their former colony again. And for all we know it was the Archbishop Rowan who was on the phone and who knows what was said to her.
I think it was Elizabeth Kaeton+ in her reflections who observed +Katharine walking slowly, her head hung down and her countenance one of profound sadness as she approached the podium in the House of Deputies to make the statement regarding B-033. +Katharine wasn't enjoying the moment either, people. And because of that moment, everyone is judging her infirm to do the right thing. But some of us know that her ministry in this Church began in Oregon and continues in Nevada even while she prepares to become THE Presiding Bishop five months from now, and that ministry was and will be one of building bridges and mending fences--HER way.
If you really want to know what +Katharine is about, go to her diocesan web site,http://www.nvdiocese.org/BISHOPSPAGES/_BpsDir.html and read what she has done and her views on ministry. Get to know her better and you will see that she has betrayed no one at anytime.
I will continue to champion her reputation even among those she has promised to protect and remove from the margins where the reasserters have put us. I urge you who would throw the first "stone" to consider what she has done in her life of ministry and the prospect of what she will accomplish for us in the future. This may be one singular step back but she will bring us that and more steps forward as she leads The Episcopal Church into a brighter future.