Interesting conjecture by Jim Naughton

General Convention / Religion

Jim, who has worked in the secular media for years, and who is now the Communications Director for the Diocese of Washington, makes the following observation in regards to a story published earlier today. The story claimed that The Episcopal Church was about to blind-sided by an Anglican Covenant that would reduce our role within the Communion to that of a second-class or limited status.

Against anxiety:

“So, for example, if I were a conservative Episcopal media relations person, and I hoped that the Church would further alienate itself from the Communion, my twin goals would be: a) to paint the Episcopal Church as unreasonable to the rest of the Communion (a gay bishop from California would have been enormously helpful in this regard) and b) to persuade Episcopalians—especially liberal Episcopalians—that no matter how our Church responds to the Windsor Report (short of a big fat hug and a kiss on the cheek—which is not within the realm of possibility) the Communion will find it wanting, and make its future membership in the Communion a series of slights and humiliations. Stories like today’s offering in the Telegraph do this nicely. (This isn’t to say it was planted for this purpose. I don’t know that. But if it was planted, it was nice work.)

I’d pursue the second of these goals because if I were interested in marginalizing the Episcopal Church within the Anglican Communion, the greatest gift that General Convention could give me is the rejection of the Special Commission’s resolutions made in response to the Windsor Report. And the surest way to sink those resolutions is to persuade liberals that remaining within the Communion isn’t worth the cost.”

Jim’s point is well taken. Whether or not this was actually the motivation behind the unwarranted conclusions in the article in the Telegraph, the ideas can certainly have this effect if they aren’t responded to quickly. Thanks be to God for the good work of Steve Warring at the Living Church for getting to the truth as quickly as he did.

The best thing the Episcopal Church can do right now is to act in good faith, and with all the integrity it can muster, within the existing structure for the good of all persons within the Anglican Communion. We may disagree within the Communion about what that “work” might be and how to balance the desires of the different parties, but at least let us be honest and open that our ultimate goal is to be servants of God in community and communion with our brothers and sisters around the world.

(Via Blog of Daniel.)

The Author

Episcopal bishop, dad, astronomer, erstwhile dancer...