All Saints Pasadena – Voices of Columbus

June 22, 2006

Ed’s Response to General Convention Wednesday

Filed under: Ed's Posts — by Jeff @ 6:31 am

Rev. Ed BaconDear friends:The actions of yesterday’s General Convention in passing a resolution which calls for restraint in consenting to the election of gay and lesbian bishops troubles me deeply for many reasons.

The deepest reason is that it singles out one category of humanity for discriminatory treatment – a violation of the most basic Christian principles and values and antithetical to the teachings and life of Jesus.

Into the minds of those who have fragile relationships with a church they thought was courageously inclusive, it invites reasonable doubts about how authentically supportive the institutional Episcopal church is of the ordination of Gene Robinson three years ago; is the church reversing itself or to quote the Presiding Bishop, "is it taking a step back in order to take a step forward"? For this observer of how the resolution was strong-armed through both legislative houses it raises grave concerns about the effectiveness of the leadership of our church to promote justice for all in the face of phenomenally strong forces of anxious and exclusionary conservatism as well as that of unadorned fear. It was the unimaginative refusal to decline the seductive trap of unhealthy roles of "critical parent – compliant/rebellious child" in order to say with love, grace, and maturity, "We will remain in interdependent, respectful, affectionate, and listening relationship with the Anglican Communion while continuing to obey the guidance of God’s Spirit to minister to all without discrimination." It was heartbreaking to watch it all up close. It will take years for the church to heal from yesterday's actions.

Yesterday's appalling set of events now forms part of our new context for ministry at All Saints. What counts now more than ever is our response.

We will not cower or waiver from our mission of healing, inclusion, justice, and peace.

At All Saints we will continue to express those ministries by the help of God with love, joy and grace. We will continue to encourage those beyond our membership who are discouraged by this General Convention action through the ministry of "Claiming the Blessing." We will continue our work to bring an end to genocide, torture, the war against Iraq, the death penalty, economic justice, and dehumanizing immigration practices. And we will carry all this forward, resourced by prayer and discernment, transformatively beautiful worship, community spirit, and teaching our brother Jesus’ vision of the human race transformed into the human family.

I am flying home today with great anticipation. I am eager to see each of you in church Sunday if not before. And in the Rector’s forum Sunday at 10:15, Lydia Lopez, Christine Mackey-Mason, Susan Russell, Jim White, and I will give a fuller report.

Much love,

Ed

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8 Comments »

  1. Thank you Ed.

    Comment by Bruno — June 22, 2006 @ 8:17 am |Reply

  2. Ed, What a man!! A mighty and Blessed man you are, with a heart like Jesus, thank you for fighting for all of us, who happen to be gay, who are people use to discrimination and if you are a person of color like myself, then you know discrimination from many avenues in this Country.

    We will move forword with God, whom we know loves all!

    You Ed, will forver have a special place in my heart, and forever in my prayers.

    All Saints will continue as you so beautifully wrote in your letter to us from Ohio.

    Welcome home, we love you and God is great!! Peace, and get some rest. Just me, Joe

    Comment by Joe O. Gonzales — June 22, 2006 @ 9:35 am |Reply

  3. Greetings from Indianapolis. Thank you for such thoughtful comments and for your support of the GLBT community. I, too, was saddened with the conclusion of the Convention and I immediately went to Susan Russell’s blog to read her response. I look at the All Saints webpage almost daily and I so appreciate the witness of the All Saints community. My partner and I joined the Episcopal church last year because of its strong witness of inclusion, exemplified by Bishop Robinson and so many others. We worship at another All Saints – in Indianapolis. A like-minded, although much smaller community than Pasadena. I just wanted to extend my gratitude to you and all the parishoners of All Saints who stand in witness for justice, inclusion and equality. I have faith that God remains in the midst of this struggle.
    Cathy

    Comment by Cathy Scott — June 22, 2006 @ 10:49 am |Reply

  4. In light of this situation, I have been seriously reflecting on and reconsidering my place in TEC. Thank you, Ed, for reassuring me that there will still be a place for me at All Saints…even if I may not be accepted at all churching within TEC.

    Comment by Laine — June 22, 2006 @ 11:06 am |Reply

  5. As a lesbian episcopalian, hat hurts me the most is that I have to seek comfort from outside my own parish. Where I was told by my interim Rector “I hope this doesn’t upset. . . . what the Church needs is reconciliation.” Translated to we are supportive of the role of lesbian and gays in the Church. You are being sacrificed for the good of the Church.

    What a load of crap. First the HoB and the HoD stab us LBGT in the back and then we are told be the centrists that we shouldn’t be upset because reconciliation is more important.

    For reasons that are way to complicated for me to go into here, I know that I am called to be in my parish. They are good people. And the interim is only an interim. The right progressive Rector would have something to build on as there is a lot of potential.

    And I am not going to educate str8 liberals on homophobia. It hurts to much.

    I pray that some of the str8s will at least understand my hurt and not be as patronizing as my IR. Who knows about the lesbigays in my parish, they are happy in their own skin but are not into the “gay agenda.”

    So, I hope that all of you at All Saitns Pasadena will remember all of us isolated LBGT who are trying very hard to be a witness of the true nondiscrimatory love of Christ in isolation. You can physically comfort each other. Who will physicall comfort me?

    An East Coast Lesbian

    Comment by East Coast Lesbian — June 22, 2006 @ 3:38 pm |Reply

  6. Dear ECL,

    Know that there are some “str8 liberals” who understand and stand with you 110%. Some of us are clergy.

    This is most certainly not over, and we will hold your place in this church come hell or highwater. There are bishops in this position, too. See http://www.edow.org/news/window/special/generalconvention/2006/0621conscience.html

    God’s blessings, and many prayers. . .

    R+

    Comment by Richard — June 22, 2006 @ 3:45 pm |Reply

  7. Dear R+

    Thank-you for your support and for standing with me. And thanks for letting me vent . The good news is that I had supportive e-mail from interim rector. At least interim rector is trying and that means something. In this case, it really doesn’t matter what level of support this is.

    In my wonderings this week around various liberal and progressive episcopal blogs, I really have been touched by the support of many str8s in TEC. And this ECL has felt your prayers.

    I vented and cried and you and others heard and comforted me. Having spewed some of my frustration and anger here and elsewhere, I am in a better place today. Perhaps through the process of spewing forth I am able to reach out for and get support from those who are physically around me — in the form of interim rector and a couple of others in my parish.

    R+, I do now other str8 liberals from around TEC who I know stand with me 110% as you do. It is because of all of you that I have the wherewithall to accept what may be small steps of support from interim rector and others.

    Finally, yes I am aware of the Bishop’s statement of conscience. I cried when I saw it.

    Yours in peace,

    East Coast Lesbian

    Comment by East Coast Lesbian — June 23, 2006 @ 12:36 pm |Reply

  8. “ . . . and teaching our brother Jesus’ vision of the human race transformed into the human family.”

    There is no such thing. It is “gays” versus “the patronizing str8s”.

    Comment by Trog — June 23, 2006 @ 2:09 pm |Reply


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