anthills–Episcopalians & the Anglican Communion

April 30, 2006

-ALL WILL / NOT BE WELL

Filed under: Anglican, Anglican Communion, ECUSA, The Windsor Report — anthill @ 12:21 pm

How does one represent in a title the double reality of a faithful Christian living through a crisis?

On the one hand, the best-known mantra of the fourteenth century English mystic Julian of Norwich, “all will be well,” claims a most basic truth. Through it all and after the worst, God will be present, sustaining and renewing for the individual believer.

On the other hand, the actual experience of the crisis may be painful to the extreme. “All will be well” may function as the last thread of hope a soul clings to.

All this is said for the individual; for certain human institutions, the use of the words, “all will be well,” may be part of “the big lie.”

One individual report (not a big-name personage) from the Synod of Province IV, just ended, is that the mood was “business as usual.” Resolutions attempting to press toward serious interaction with The Windsor Report were combined and replaced by a substitute resolution affirming “the spirit” of that report.

Province IV, comprising the southeastern states plus Kentucky, is arguably the most conservative of the provinces. If the watering down of the Windsor-related resolutions reflects an “all will be well” attitude, I’m afraid that doesn’t bode well for conservatives at General Convention.

Reinforcing this perception is the presence of five of the nominees for Presiding Bishop in the dioceses represented. These men are “powers” who exert their influence with words and without.

How can the outlook for conservatives at General Convention not be bleak? The Windsor Report is admitted to be the only explicit way that has been offered for keeping ECUSA in the Anglican Communion—our home in catholic Christianity.

“All will be well” seems to be the hope and prayer of those who seek to steer our church-ship into flow of the cultural mainstream. But the mantra that gives true comfort to individual believers, does not necessary apply to institutions.

If General Convention does not (and who would bet now that they will) humbly return to the Communion, then it can be predicted that a hundred thousand people would finally have had enough and walk away. There was a net loss of 27,252 people in Average Sunday Attendance (ASA) in 2004–the last year reported.

The “all will be well” leaders are bolstered for such a loss. Some will welcome it. But what a tragedy that multiple tens of thousands of sincere believers—many lifetime members—will be sacrificed for a purported forward step in the ministry of invitation and reconciliation. What a sad irony!

As an ordained representative of this church, I must say I have a foreboding feeling that “all will not be well” in ECUSA.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] – ANTHILLS BLOG: “for certain human institutions, the use of the words, “all will be well,” may be part of “the big lie” … (anthill) […]

    Pingback by CaNN :: We started it. — May 2, 2006 @ 2:00 pm


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