The Presiding Bishop of ECUSA, The Most Reverend Katharine Jefferts Schori has responded as well. Her entire response is as follows:
Much of the Anglican world must be lamenting the latest emission from GAFCON. Anglicanism has always been broader than some find comfortable. This statement does not represent the end of Anglicanism, merely another chapter in a centuries-old struggle for dominance by those who consider themselves the only true believers. Anglicans will continue to worship God in their churches, serve the hungry and needy in their communities, and build missional relationships with others across the globe, despite the desire of a few leaders to narrow the influence of the gospel. We look forward to the opportunities of the Lambeth Conference for constructive conversation, inspired prayer, and relational encounters.
Help me out people, what is it about her response that I find so offensive? Is it the scatological tone of the first sentence? Does she think that she is any less than one who claims to be a “true believer”? (She obviously thinks “the others” are wrong.) Perhaps it is the way in which her first sentence seems to ignore the fact that much (the majority, in fact) of the Anglican world has lamented the actions of the Communion in the North and West. Is it the tone, the condescension?
What is it….
Some more thoughts. Compare the PB’s response with that of the ABC. He did affirm the uniqueness of Christ and his deity in his statement, affirmed the common purpose and goals and then had very reasonable criticisms of the GAFCON proposal. From KJS? We have scatological aspersions.
2 thoughts on “The Presiding Bishop Responds to GAFCON (boy does she!)”
Well, I think the problem you might have with her response resides in this nugget:
“This statement does not represent the end of Anglicanism, merely another chapter in a centuries-old struggle for dominance by those who consider themselves the only true believers.”
Embedded in this sentence is a) a rebuke of those who consider themselves the only true believers delivered by someone who must b) believe that in actuality she knows the truth.
It’s just this tautological hypocrisy that drives me nuts about liberals.
Of course, maybe I am reading this wrong. Perhaps she was referring to herself (and others like her) as continuing the centuries own struggle for dominance.
How about “narrow the influence of the gospel”. This is a standard canard. Certainly the gospel is all about personal sin, of which I have plenty, and the work of Jesus on the cross. It is the fact that the gospel touches my sin that makes it relevant. Schori’s faction is committed to ‘broadening’ the gospel by redefining sin in ways that are blatantly contrary to scripture – with the belief that this is what is needed to make the gospel relevant to certain groups. But not stopping there, she accuses those who don’t follow in the path of trying to “narrow the influence of the gospel”, as if we are trying to push people out of heaven into hell because we won’t follow the modernist re-write of scripture.
Side stepping the core issue, she talks about “serve the hungry and needy” and other valuable things which we do. What I hear is “why are you distracting us with the gospel rather than feeding the hungry?”, as if Jesus only came to take care of a few thousand poor and sick, but not to give us a better appreciation of how far we fall short of God’s standards, call us to repentance and sacrifice himself for us on the cross.