Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Withholding Consent: Should we or shouldn't we?

In the recent WakeUp.org news there is a campaign underway to withhold consent to the consecration of The Very Rev Mark Lawrence from the Diocese of San Joaquin, one of the breakaway schismatic diocese of the Episcopal Church, who was recently elected to be the new Bishop of South Carolina. The Very Rev Lawrence makes it no secret that he wants to be under the auspices of the Anglican Communion Network which is the creation of +Akinola of Africa, the one who is to be credited for creating problems in his homeland and abroad within and without the Communion.

What are the reasons for seriously considering withholding consent:

1. He advocates that the Episcopal Church surrender its governing authority to the Primates of the Anglican Communion.
2. He appears to be an advocate of schism in the Episcopal Church.
3. Rather than continue to remain in dialogue, Father Lawrence is willing to cut off those who disagree with him, and he believes that homosexuality is a valid “reason” for schism. If a split does occur, it seems likely he will leave the Episcopal Church.

Is this someone who should be a leader in that very Church?

So, what do you think, dear reader? Shall we ask if not demand that our bishops and Standing Committees withhold consent to his consecration as Bishop of South Carolina? And whichever way you vote, please share your reasoning behind your decision. This is not a scientific poll by any means. My curiosity is peaked as is that of others interested and concerned for the unity of the Communion and the strength and independence of the Episcopal Church. We are no one's colony after all.

If you think that he will do more harm than good to the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion, then let your diocesan bishop know as well as your diocesan standing committee. Also let the current PB as well as +Katharine know how you feel in this matter that is so crucial to the unity of our Church in the USA.

Email addresses for the PB and PBE are as follows:

PB: pboffice@ecusa.anglican.org OR pboffice@episcopalchurch.org
PBE: KJefferts@aol.com

Thank you.


"I'm for the separation of Church and hate."


Anonymous said...

To be fair, he should be consented too.

Although, when I hear talk about inclusion these days, it seems to not mean the "other" side.

Lionel said...

Fair to whom?

Of course Mark Lawrence should be rejected by bishops with jurisdiction and standing committees. Being “inclusive” doesn't require being stupid or suicidal. What if South Carolina had elected someone who claimed to have become a Buddhist? Should such a person be granted consecration simply because South Carolina thinks he would make a good Episcopal bishop? Of course not, and others would have good reason for saying so. A nondiscriminatory fire department hiring policy should not extend to arsonists.

I recommend that people read my essay “No Consents: A Crucial Test for The Episcopal Church,” which was sent by Via Media USA to all bishops with jurisdiction and standing committees. Episcopal Forum of South Carolina, a Via Media USA group, also sent a letter questioning the propriety of granting consent for Mark Lawrence’s consecration. I recommend reading that letter as well.