Friday, December 22, 2006

Choose This Day ...

[Editor's note: Reflecting on recent voices from Episcopalian bishops, Judy Mathews (Diocese of Florida and member of The Episcopal Majority Steering Committee) was struck by the sharp contrast in tone and content of Bishop Duncan's recent statement versus those of the leadership of the Episcopal Church. She offered this succinct comment.]

From Judy Mathews:

In contrast to the statement by Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh, the loyal Episcopalians in the Diocese of Virginia and in other dioceses hear the voices of bishops, priests, deacons, and laity of our Church. We who will not be part of a federation of groups under bishops in Nigeria and Rwanda hear the voices of support from The Episcopal Majority (TEM) and other support groups in our Church.

Loyal Episcopalians hear the words of The Episcopal Majority, posted on the website on August 19, 2006: "The Episcopal Majority is a grassroots organization committed to the values and vitality of the Episcopal Church and working to neutralize the negative influence of the American Anglican Council (AAC), the Anglican Communion Network (AAN), and those groups abroad who wish to harm this Church and exclude us from Anglicanism. . . ."

On December 18, 2006, responding to the recent actions in Virginia, our Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, issued a statement, acknowledging not only the people who say they will leave our Church, but those who are loyal to us. As reported by the Episcopal News Service (ENS):

... Jefferts Schori called on the rest of the Episcopal Church to "remember to pray for everybody involved – those who feel a need to leave and those who remain – to pray that those people and their families can find some peace and remember that communities can reach beyond this kind of division ...."

The Rt. Rev. Peter James Lee, Bishop of Virginia, as reported by ENS on December 17, 2006, vows to care of remaining Episcopalians, "... to consider the full range of pastoral, canonical and legal obligations of the Church and our responsibilities to those faithful Episcopalians in these congregations who do not choose to associate with the Church of Nigeria. ..."

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