Tuesday, June 10, 2003

picking battles

I hadn't been following the story, so was impressed to hear that the Episcopal church in New Hampshire has elected an openly-gay bishop. My previous link to an article didn't work, but try the New York Times or Washington Post.

I understand that this is a difficult issue for the well-intentioned leadership of the church because of the views of Anglican leaders in the third world. I don't take the Biblical argument seriously because the biblical condemnations of homosexuality have no more authority than the requirements that women take ritual baths and cover their heads in church. But what strikes me is the effect of the New Hampshire decision on me as a liberal who tends to avoid conflict. Without this example I was tending to feel that it isn't the time to fight these issues. But the New Hampshire decision makes clear that the church can't afford to postpone the issue and rule out leaders that God is raising up right now.

I do want to point out that I am in the Diocese of Upper South Carolina, not in the Diocese of South Carolina whose bishop has issued a statement condemning the New Hampshire decision.

Update: a number of good reflections

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