Sunday, January 20, 2008

Episcopalians in Fort Worth: You can't have it both ways

It seems to me that if the Ft. Worth Diocese of the Episcopal Church wants to withdraw to the Southern Cone, it will just have to accept the fact that it can't take its property with it. Baptists, Disciples of Christ, etc. own their own buildings. Not TEC.

You can't have it both ways, Bishop Iker.

The Christian tradition is valuable, of course. But Bishop Iker and all ultra-conservatives make the mistake of valuing their tradition above any belief that God is still working in this world, still calling us toward transformation, still nudging us toward repentence of the obvious EVILS (and I don't use that word lightly) perpetrated by that very "tradition" ~ one of the most glaringly obvious in my view being that of denying ordination to women. That one horrible belief alone makes me want to throw up.

Katie Sherrod's recent post is exactly right. She writes: "Someone once said that if fish could think, water would be the last thing they would discover. They are so immersed in it that it is invisible to them. That's what it's like in this [Ft. Worth] diocese these days. Jack Iker has immersed this place in his delusions for so long they are invisible to most of us. Normally intelligent people are buying into his delusion that he can "take the diocese" AND the property "out of The Episcopal Church" and just plop us all into the Southern Cone."

Her words remind me of the truth that we exist in a system of evil patriarchy. The system is so pervasive that it is indeed difficult to see. Once we awaken to it, once we actually see it, then the life-destroying actions of Bishop Iker's theological views become crystal clear.

My heart aches for the Episcopal Church.
For all churches who refuse to open themselves to how God is still speaking.


RevDrKate said...
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RevDrKate said...

Another sadness in this for me is that in the "taking away" of his diocese Iker virtually undoes exactly that which we are about....holding the center, remaining in dialogue, continuing the conversation. There is some brightness how strong a response there has been in the fledgling group that remains to restart the church in Ft.Worth and how much support they are getting from across TEC in the US and also from other denominations in Ft. Worth offering space and other resources. But it is a sad thing to be so distracted by this when there is so so much more important work to do to be about the Gospel.

Rev SS said...

Well said. The state of the Church in America is very sad.

My hope comes from the knowledge that transformation has always been messy and brought with it pain. Where the Holy Spirit is Active, the Evil Adversary rears its ugly head.

And, the Good News is this re-formation will result in a church that is relevant to the culture it is being called to serve.

Jan said...

Thanks, Katherine. Corpus Christi seems somewhat far from Ft. Worth, but Bishop Iker's words and actions reverberate too far. It's very sad. I realize prayer is my only option, plus faith in God.

Crimson Rambler said...

And really...aren't those things, prayer and faith in God, ALWAYS our only options? in every circumstance, however discouraging and distressing? And current circumstances certainly are too.

mompriest said...

sigh. it's complicated...but I say, fine. go.