Thursday, July 24, 2008

A Chance for Healing?

We've been reporting on the historic Lambeth Conference in England. As much as one-third of all bishops within the Anglican Communion have stayed away because of the controversy surrounding openly gay people within the church hierarchy. Bishop Gene Robinson (who was a keynote speaker and guest at our PFLAG National Gala last October) has come to Canterbury despite not being invited. His presence there has been the cause of much discussion and controversy.

The Lambeth Conference is held every 10 years, and it was five years ago that openly gay Bishop Robinson was appointed Bishop in the Episcopalian Church here in the States. The head of the Anglican Communion, The Archbishop of Canterbury, Bishop Clive Handford told the BBC today that the Communion remains at an impasse. As Bishop Handford said, "Through modern technology there has been active fear-mongering, deliberate distortion and demonising. Politicisation has overtaken Christian discernment."

Anglicans and non-Anglicans alike watching the Lambeth Conference can agree that this should be a time of putting aside differences and being able to move forward. However some bishops, like Sudanese Archbishop Daniel Deng, have called for Robinson to resign. One has to wonder why the mere presence of openly gay people in the clergy are enough to potentially create a schism.

See also:
Schism vs. Welcoming
Equality in the Anglican Communion

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