Sunday, May 20, 2018

Bishop says royal wedding ‘wove together many different worlds’

From PBS-


In a striking break with English tradition, the first black leader of the U.S. Episcopal Church delivered a passionate sermon at the royal wedding on Saturday, where he referenced Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s beliefs on the "redemptive power of love.” To some, the speech was as significant as the matrimony itself. Alison Stewart talked to Most Rev. Michael Bruce Curry about converging cultures.

Read the Full Transcript

  • ALISON STEWART:
    Joining me now via Skype from the United Kingdom is the most Reverend Michael Curry. Reverend thanks for being with us.
  • MOST REV. MICHAEL BRUCE CURRY:
    Sure glad to be with you.
  • ALISON STEWART:
    Your message to this couple today was about the power of love. But there was definitely a message for the rest of the world as well. What do you hope we all take away from today’s ceremony?
  • MOST REV. MICHAEL BRUCE CURRY:
    Well you know I really do hope and pray that that that this day can be a day of renewal for all of us. There was a couple who are deeply in love with each other and you could feel and see their love on their faces and it’s real. And and they chose the text that I used from the Song of Solomon. And it’s just interesting that it comes from a part in that Song of Solomon or Song of Songs is really a low poem found in the Hebrew Scriptures of the Old Testament and so that text actually became the springboard for recognizing that the love between Harry and Meghan between this couple actually was tapping into a greater love that isn’t a matter of sentimentality but actually as a way of life that can change lives and that can change social structures and can change the world in the way in which we live.

    More here-

    https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/bishop-says-royal-wedding-wove-together-many-different-worlds

Newark Episcopal Diocese votes in Morristown to elect first black bishop

From New Jersey-

Some history was made Saturday at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Morristown, where members of the Diocese of Newark elected the Rev. Carlye J. Hughes as their next bishop.

Hughes, 59, is the first African American, and the first woman, to serve in that role. She will succeed retiring Bishop Mark Beckwith in September.

The matter was decided on the first ballot, with Hughes garnering 62 of 116 clergy votes and 141 of 241 lay votes, according to the Diocese.

The other nominees were the Rev. Lisa W. Hunt, rector of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Houston, and the Rev. Canon Scott G. Slater, from the Diocese of Maryland.


More here-

https://morristowngreen.com/2018/05/19/newark-episcopal-diocese-votes-in-morristown-to-elect-first-black-bishop/

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Bishop Curry's Royal Wedding Sermon Was Wholly Un-British, Amazing, and Necessary

From Esquire-

We did not expect to be taken to church. 

But I’ll be damned if The Most Reverend Michael Curry, the first African-American Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, didn’t take us right there. His sermon quoted liberally from both St. Paul and Martin Luther King, Jr., and centered around the redemptive qualities of simple, selfless love. 

The love between Harry and Meghan (“Two young people fell in love, and we all showed up”), the love Jesus had for the world (“He didn't sacrifice his life for himself, He did it for the good and wellbeing of others. That's love”), and the power of unselfish love to transform the world (“When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields.”) 

It was a shot of adrenaline directly to your feels: “There is power in love,” Bishop Curry said, “If you doubt it, think back to when you first fell in love.” It was a call to action: “Love God, love your neighbor, and while you’re at it, love yourself.” It quoted African-American spirituals, and equated love with the fire that powers automobiles and airplanes. It was a doozy.  

More here-

Royal wedding preacher: Who is Michael Curry?

From The BBC-

American Bishop Michael Curry has captured the world's attention with a long and powerful address at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

The Chicago-born bishop spoke passionately about the power of love, quoting Dr Martin Luther King Jr.
"There's power in love, don't underestimate it," he said. The wide-ranging and colourful speech was seen as a significant break from tradition.


The Most Reverend Michael Curry became the first black presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church - like the Church of England, part of the Anglican Communion - when he was appointed in 2015.
He has spoken out on social justice issues in the past, including LGBT rights and sexual abuse.


The address, replete with historical references, had churchgoers, including David Beckham and the Duchess of Cornwall smiling. Others appeared transfixed.

The bride and groom, who invited Bishop Curry to speak, sat near the preacher and held hands as they watched him speak.


More here-

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-44180777

The Internet Is Raving Over Bishop Michael Curry's Royal Wedding Sermon

From Time-


Meghan Markle and Prince Harry may have been the stars of the royal wedding, but Bishop Michael Curry of Chicago was definitely a strong runner-up.

Just before a stirring performance of Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me” by Karen Gibson and the Kingdom Choir, the Most Reverend Michael Curry delivered a rousing sermon that both began and ended with a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

As Harry and Meghan sat nearby holding hands, Curry—who was appointed the first black presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church in 2015—gave an address centered on “The Power of Love.”

Many watching were quick to tweet about his inspiring words.

That’s Fire

Some viewers latched onto Curry’s enthusiastic catchphrase of “That’s fire!” to praise the sermon.


More here-

http://time.com/5283974/royal-wedding-bishop-michael-curry-reactions/

Royal wedding: Reverend Bishop Michael Curry upstages Meghan Markle with impassioned sermon

From Australia-

From the outset, it was clear that this was not going to be a standard Church of England sermon, which tradition dictates should be delivered in the tone of a very shy person asking the way to the train station.

A copy of Bishop Curry's address was distributed in advance, but he immediately went off script, barely glancing at the tablet in front of him on which his prepared words blinked patiently.

He started with the Reverend Martin Luther King, then into an energetic reverie about love.

"Now the power of love is demonstrated by the fact that we are all here," he enthused, hands flying.

"Two young people fell in love, and we all showed up. But it's not just for and about a young couple who we rejoice with. It's more than that."

At this point, guests began to exchange glances.

Princess Beatrice (fresh from disappointing the gathered crowds by failing to wear a hat that looked as if she were attempting to establish contact with a distant galaxy) assumed an expression of goggle-eyed amusement.

More here-

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-20/royal-wedding-meghan-markle-upstaged-by-reverend-michael-curry/9779990


Episcopal bishop Curry gives royal wedding an American flair

From Baltimore-

Nothing quite captured the trans-Atlantic nature of Saturday's royal wedding as much as the guest preacher whose sermon brought American flair to a very English church service.

The Most Rev. Michael Bruce Curry, the first black leader of the Episcopal Church in the United States, was hand-picked by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to address their 600 wedding guests.

The bishop's sermon on the theme of love, delivered with energy and studded with quotes from the bible, Martin Luther King Jr. and African-American spirituals, was a contrast to the more solemn Anglican style the royal family is used to.

Quoting civil rights icon King on the "redemptive power of love," Curry told the bride and groom "it's not just for, and about, a young couple who we rejoice with, it's more than that."

Many observers were surprised and delighted. BBC broadcaster Jeremy Vine tweeted: "The preacher is doing 50 in a 30 zone and it's brilliant."


More here

http://www.baltimoresun.com/entertainment/sns-bc-eu--britain-royal-wedding-service-20180519-story.html

'That was a black church sermon:' Rev. Michael Curry brings passion to the Church of England

From Philadelphia-

All the pomp and circumstance expected were there: the Queen, the royals, the pageantry of the British Empire.

Then came the Rev. Michael Curry. Born in Chicago. Black. Reading from the Song of Solomon, the book in the Bible that talks candidly about love. Fire. Passion.

“Its flashes are flashes of fire. A raging flame, many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it out,” sounded Curry’s voice in the cavernous St. George’s Chapel, where 500 years of British monarchs lay buried.

Curry, 65, then did something what some pastors call “shifting gears,” said Rev. Mark Kelly Tyler, pastor of Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Philadelphia.


More here-

http://www.philly.com/philly/news/royal-wedding-meghan-markle-harry-sussex-michael-curry-black-church-sermon-20180519.html

If you liked the Royal Wedding sermon on Saturday, go to church on Sunday

From Fox News-

It seems like the whole planet tuned in to watch the royal wedding. It was a beautiful occasion on a beautiful day, and Harry and Meghan looked just the part. Young and in love. The wedding had it all: fascinators, celebrities, pomp, and great music.

Then there was the sermon. Many people are saying the preacher stole the show. I knew it was going to be a great sermon, and I knew Bishop Michael Curry, head of the Episcopal Church in the USA, would preach about love.

If you haven’t watched the sermon, do it now. It’s the best thirteen minutes you’ll spend all day.


The reactions among media and on Twitter were amazing. One British paper said Bishop Curry is a “break-out star.” Buzzfeed posted the full text of the sermon. When has Buzzfeed ever posted a sermon?! TV network commentators were gobsmacked.

Of course, Bishop Curry, as amazing as he is, isn’t the reason people found the sermon moving. It was not the preacher, but the subject that moved people’s hearts. We’re all yearning to know that we are loved, that our lives have purpose, and that the world can be transformed. That’s the power of love, and that’s exactly what Bishop Curry spoke about.


More here-

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/05/19/if-liked-royal-wedding-sermon-on-saturday-go-to-church-on-sunday.html

Who is Michael Curry? The minister who told royal wedding 'love is the way'

From The Guardian-

The US minister chosen by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle who told royals and celebrities that “love is the way” at their wedding on Saturday has previously spoken out on racial justice, LGBT equality and sexual harassment and exploitation.

In a powerful and entertaining address that left some members of the royal family looking bemused even as others laughed and nodded, Bishop Michael Curry told the service: “There’s power in love. Love can help and heal when nothing else can. There’s power in love to lift up and liberate when nothing else will.”

Curry, the most senior figure in the American Episcopal church, part of the global Anglican communion, was one of three clergyman at the wedding. The archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, took the couple through their marriage vows and the dean of Windsor, David Conner, conducted the service.


More here-

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/may/19/royal-couples-chosen-minister-is-campaigner-on-equal-rights

Acts of Faith ‘There’s power in love’: Read the fiery sermon at the royal wedding by the Episcopal Church’s Michael Curry

From The Washington Post-

The Most Rev. Michael Curry, the first African American to preside over the Episcopal Church, focused his sermon at the royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on Saturday on “the redemptive power of love.”

Drawing from quotes from civil rights leader the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., American slaves and a Jesuit theologian, his sermon centered on the biblical teachings of Jesus.

“Jesus did not get an honorary doctorate for dying,” Curry said. “He wasn’t getting anything out of it. He gave up his life, he sacrificed his life for the good of others, for the well-being of the world, for us. That’s what love is.”

“Love can be sacrificial, and in so doing, become redemptive,” he said. “That way of unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive love changes lives.”

Curry, who was installed as presiding bishop of the U.S.-based member of the Anglican Communion on Nov. 1, 2015, is the son of an outspoken civil rights activist who helped bring an end to segregated schools in Buffalo. As bishop in North Carolina, he was one of the first to allow same-sex marriages to be performed in churches there and often speaks on progressive issues. Curry did not know the couple personally before the wedding, according a spokeswoman for the Episcopal Church, but he met them before the ceremony. “When I was told I said, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me,’ ” he joked of being chosen to deliver the sermon. “Is this an April Fool’s Day prank?”


More here-

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2018/05/19/theres-power-in-love-read-the-fiery-sermon-by-the-episcopal-churchs-michael-curry/?utm_term=.19d95c7fd739

Bishop Michael Curry just stole the show with his sermon at the Royal Wedding.

From Vox-

Much has been written about every aspect of Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle. Her modern Givenchy dress, her mother’s natural hair, the presence of a gospel choir, have all received columns (and screen inches).

But one of the most striking elements of the royal wedding was also among the most unexpected: the fiery, impassioned, and theologically-charged sermon of American Episcopalian bishop Michael Curry.

Quoting everyone from Martin Luther King, Jr., to controversial Catholic twentieth-century theologian Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, referencing African-American spirituals and black enslavement in America, Curry’s sermon was a far cry from what might be seen as the “traditional,” aristocratic Anglican sermon you might expect from a royal wedding. Running at nearly fifteen minutes, the sermon emphasized the power of love. But the love Curry described wasn’t just the romantic love you might express at a wedding. Rather, Curry was drawing on the rhetoric of liberation theology — a 20th century theological tradition inspired by Marxist thought — to characterize love as a necessary, chaotic, and political force. Love, for Curry, provides hope in the face of social injustice, even as it provides a blueprint for overturning it. Quoting the Biblical Book of Amos, Curry said:


More here-

https://www.vox.com/identities/2018/5/17/17361848/michael-curry-episcopal-priest-royal-wedding-sermon

Friday, May 18, 2018

Understand marriage, avoid divorce, Anglican Primate admonishes Christians

From Nigeria-

The Most Rev. Nicholas Okoh, Primate of All Nigeria (Anglican Communion), has admonished Christians to understand marriage before going into it, so as to avoid the high rate of divorce in the society.

Okoh said this in an interview with journalists on the sideline of the opening service of the Second Session of the Tenth Synod of the Diocese of Abuja, at Basilica of Grace, Gudu, Abuja, on Thursday.

The theme of the four-day event is: “The Christian Family’’ taken from the Book of 2 Timothy Chapter 1 Verse 5. Okoh, who is also the Archbishop and Bishop of the diocese, stressed that marriage is a lifetime commitment. He, therefore, advised would-be couples understand the dos and don’ts of marriage instead of making children to be produced from their unions to suffer what they know nothing about. “If you notice, there is an increase in divorce; people rush to marry but soon afterward, they are going to court to file for divorce.


Read more at:

https://www.vanguardngr.com/2018/05/understand-marriage-avoid-divorce-anglican-primate-admonishes-christians/

The Anglican politics of Prince Harry’s wedding

From RNS-

On Friday, Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church (TEC), will be giving the sermon at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

For those of you who are interested in the British royal family, this gig would seem to involve some identity politics. As an African-American, Curry can count the bride, a biracial Yank , as one of his peeps.

It was two months ago that the future Princess Meghan was baptized and confirmed into the Church of England (CoE) by the Archbishop of Canterbury (ABC), Justin Welby. Welby will be officiating at the wedding, just as one of his predecessors, Robert Runcie, officiated at the wedding of Harry parents, Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana.

What’s of interest to this column, which in all candor could care less about royals, is the ABC’s hearty endorsement of the designated preacher—naturally enough in this day and age, via tweet:


More here-

https://religionnews.com/2018/05/17/the-anglican-politics-of-prince-harrys-wedding/

That Blacks Are Leaving White Churches Should Surprise Nobody. Here is What to do About It

From Texas-

n America, it is easy to forget. At a political moment when black evangelicals leaving white controlled churches is headline news, it is important to remember this. In fact, it has happened before, over and over again. It is more than a political moment. It is a historical pattern.

This matters because the majority of white Christians still believe their churches are open to nonwhites. Yet, as black members leave once again, it is obvious that many feel otherwise.

If this pattern is ever going to change, white churches have to acknowledge racial history. They have to understand why blacks have left white churches and why they continue to do so. 

For example, Richard Allen, a freed slave, attended St. George’s Methodist Church in Philadelphia from 1786 to 1792. He would have stayed longer, but white members wouldn’t let him. During the middle of a service, they dragged Allen and fellow Methodist preacher Absalom Jones, also a former slave, from the whites-only seating to the back of the church. 


More here-

https://news.utexas.edu/2018/05/17/what-to-do-about-blacks-leaving-white-churches

A guide to the royal wedding sermon: Listen for love

From Fox News-

Saturday is the big day, not only for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, but for millions upon millions of people who will tune in to watch the royal wedding.

There will be plenty of things to notice in the wedding ceremony. The clothes will be stunning. The flowers will be beautiful. The procession will be impressive. The words of the ceremony, with their Shakespearian cadences, will be both beautiful and inspiring.

Amid all that, don’t forget to notice the address. For the first time, an American has been invited to speak at a royal wedding. Bishop Michael Bruce Curry, the head of the Episcopal Church in the U.S. will give a brief sermon during the ceremony.


You can read Bishop Curry’s biographical details, but the best way to understand him is to hear him preach. The man can certainly preach! Not long ago, he preached at the Washington National Cathedral, and he offered a powerful sermon. If you want to get a sample of Bishop Curry’s strong preaching, here he is talking about how Christians should be witnessing to Christ’s love.


More here-

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/05/18/guide-to-royal-wedding-sermon-listen-for-love.html

Thursday, May 17, 2018

AN INTERVIEW WITH BISHOP GENE ROBINSON ABOUT POLITICS AND FAITH IN AMERICA

From World Religion News-

On June 7, 2003, Gene Robinson was elected Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire, becoming the first openly-gay and partnered priest to be elected Bishop in historic Christendom. Despite national and international opposition and efforts to derail his consecration, Robinson was consecrated bishop on November 2, 2003, and served as IX Bishop of New Hampshire until his retirement in early 2013.

Following his retirement, and prior to coming to Chautauqua, Robinson served as a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, a progressive think tank in Washington, DC, speaking and writing on national and international LGBT issues, race, poverty, and immigration reform. He is also a Senior Fellow at the Auburn Seminary, New York City. In addition to being a popular speaker in the U.S. and abroad, he has regularly written opinion columns on a variety of topics for The Daily Beast, Huffington Post, and Time.com. Earlier in his ministry, he coordinated ministry for the seven dioceses of New England, authored the “Being Well in Christ” conference model on clergy wellness, initiated and co-authored “Fresh Start,” a two-year mentoring program for all clergy in new positions now in use in nearly half of the dioceses of the Episcopal Church. Much of his ministry has focused on helping congregations and clergy, especially in times of conflict, utilizing his skills in congregational dynamics, conflict resolution and mediation.


More here-

https://www.worldreligionnews.com/religion-news/christianity/interview-bishop-gene-robinson-politics-faith-united-states

How Meghan Markle Is Making the Church of England Great Again

From The Standard-

But Curry, the Episcopal Church’s first African-American leader, will get the most screen time of the presiding clergymen at Saturday’s service. And he’ll bring his popular and appealingly open-hearted ecclesial brand. The charismatic former bishop of North Carolina, Curry’s a far cry from the academic, old-style Anglicans to whom English aristocrats are accustomed.

A 2012 sermon of Curry’s went viral, by Episcopal Church standards anyway, when he proclaimed, “We need some crazy Christians!” Jesus’s contemporaries thought he was crazy, “Those who would follow in his footsteps, those who would be his disciples, are called and summoned and challenged to be just as crazy as Jesus.” That sermon became a book, and the bishop of North Carolina became the bishop of the whole country.


He’s the perfect choice for the Harry-Meghan nuptials, an event already full of “firsts” for the royal family: The fact that Canterbury baptized and confirmed Markle so recently reflects another notable break between her and everything the English royals have ever done before, noted veteran religion writer Richard Ostling. Curry’s presence, he added, further “underscores the fact that this is not your typical royal wedding.”

More here-

https://www.weeklystandard.com/alice-b-lloyd/harry-meghan-royal-wedding-up-beat-bishop-of-american-episcopal-church-to-deliver-sermon

We need a Pentecost

From Christian Century-

As a child, my favorite story to recite was the narrative of Pentecost in the book of Acts. My love for this narrative was not surprising, as I was the child of a Pentecostal pastor. Each year, the most dramatically staged biblical story in our church was always the story of Pentecost. We loved entering the sacred terrain of retelling Pentecost, particularly reciting these words: “And they were gathered together in one accord.” That line communicated what was held as sacred within our community: our togetherness, our unbreakable bond of living with and loving each other. We were in one accord. The joy of community was the gift of the Spirit.

My church community also understood what made Pentecost a joyous occasion. Pentecost was about the miracle of community, the community across differences that was made possible through the work of the Spirit. Miracles sit at the center of this Acts narrative.

Just imagine, the disciples gather in the upper room, waiting to receive the Holy Spirit. Remember that they have been instructed by the resurrected Christ to wait until the Holy Spirit comes upon them. So they go to Jeru­salem. But something happens that they do not expect or even desire. Jews from around the world are gathered and suddenly hear the disciples in their own native languages and are stupefied. They ask, “What does this mean?” Is the im­possible actually transpiring? Jews from around the world cannot deny what they hear, that something that is impossible has become possible.

More here-

https://www.christiancentury.org/article/critical-essay/we-need-pentecost

What’s Happening In Israel Isn’t About Jesus

From Progressive Christian-

When American Televangelists like John Hagee and Robert Jeffress stand in Jerusalem and proclaim that Biblical prophecy is being fulfilled, it’s important to realize that there is no such Biblical prophecy being fulfilled.
 
None.

Every Old Testament prophecy about Israel returning to the land was fulfilled.

The final prophecy about the fate of Israel and the destruction of Jerusalem was spoken by Jesus and fulfilled in AD 70. There were no prophecies made after that time about any restoration of Jerusalem or rebuilding of the Temple.

On the contrary, there were dozens of prophecies and statements in the New Testament by Jesus and the Apostles about the new Temple of God being fulfilled in Christ, and subsequently by those who are in Christ.

The new Temple of God is us.

More here-

 http://www.patheos.com/blogs/keithgiles/2018/05/whats-happening-in-israel-isnt-about-jesus/#qdjwbyxFgmJ1dIwH.01

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Anglican Leaders Issue Statements Affirming Traditional Marriage

From CBN-

Anglican Australian and Irish bishops issued official statements clarifying their positions on same-sex marriage last week.

The House of Bishops of the Church of Ireland said the marriage service "remains unchanged and marriage may be solemnised only between a man and woman."

"No liturgy or authorised service is provided therefore for any other situation," the bishops continued in their statement. "It is widely recognised that there is no simple solution for these and other issues of human sexuality; but with compassion, humility and concern, we offer our continued commitment to attentive listening and to respectful discussion."


More here-

http://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/cwn/2018/may/anglican-leaders-issue-statements-affirming-traditional-marriage

From WNY to Windsor Castle, preparing to preach at royal wedding

From Buffalo-

Josephine Robbins was sitting Monday in her parked car on the East Side, about to attend a friend's funeral at the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church on Cedar Street, when her phone started buzzing. She picked it up and listened as the voice on the other end, a friend she has known and loved since he was a 10-year-old, kept apologizing, feeling badly she had not learned some monumental news from him firsthand.

"It's fine," she told him, moved by a deeper truth.
To Robbins, 83, it means everything that Episcopal Presiding Bishop Michael Bruce Curry took the time early in the week to call her at all. He is busy preparing a wedding sermon that will be heard Saturday by an audience that includes Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain, a monarch who will almost certainly be seated close enough to catch his eye.

Curry, 65, is presiding bishop and primate of the Episcopal Church, the U.S.-based member church of the international Anglican Communion, whose mother church is the Church of England.



More here-

http://buffalonews.com/2018/05/15/sean-kirst-out-of-buffalo-on-to-preach-at-a-royal-wedding/

Barred by Catholic bishop, Dan Schutte performs in local Episcopal church

From Kansas City-

In the 1970s and '80s, Schutte was part of the liturgical group the St. Louis Jesuits. He is now composer-in-residence at the Jesuit-run University of San Francisco and travels extensively, giving talks, parish retreats and workshops. Prior to coming to Kansas City, he had preached a five-day parish mission in Seattle. Schutte is also a member of the NCR board of directors and came to Kansas City for our spring board meeting.

The Kansas City concert, however, did not happened without a snag. It had to be moved to an Episcopal church, after Bishop James Johnston of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Missouri, prohibited Schutte from appearing in a Catholic parish, because, the bishop said, the composer didn't have "a letter of suitability" from his home diocese.

The only reference to this contretemps was in Schutte's opening remarks when he said, "I want to thank the people of St. Paul's [Episcopal Church] who, when we could not do this in our original space, invited us here."


More here-

https://www.ncronline.org/news/people/ncr-today/barred-catholic-bishop-dan-schutte-performs-local-episcopal-church

Bishops give first glance of their response to #MeToo

From Episcopal Cafe-

At the most recent meeting of the House of Bishops in March, the bishops announced their intention to offer a listening session in response to issues of sexual harassment and misconduct in the church brought to light as part of the #MeToo movement.  In their statement they wrote;

“Many of us have experienced sexual harassment and perhaps sexual violence. Bishops who are women know the “me-too” experience. Some bishops who are men know it as well. We live with different experiences of the cultural endowment of power. We know the Church has fallen short of our responsibility to listen and respond. In this time of heightened awareness it is with greater intention that we now invite the church to a deeper examination of what God intends for our relationships.”

Today, the chair of the planning team tasked with planning and offering that session for listening, Bishop DeDe Duncan-Probe (Central New York), offers some insight into the hopes and intentions of the bishops.  Their intent is to engage liturgically with the hurt and brokenness in the church in hopes of making first steps towards healing. Bishop Duncan Probe said that they wanted the church to know that the planning team is “working to ensure integrity in the way people’s sacred stories are heard.”  A more detailed outline of the service should be available soon.

More here-

Christian Discipleship in Northern Canada

From The Living Church-

For the past two years I have been running a small theological college in the Canadian Arctic, the Arthur Turner Training School in Iqaluit. Its purpose is to train northern Indigenous people to minister in churches across the Diocese of the Arctic, a vast land that spans 1.5 million square miles. I have done the bulk of teaching for my five Inuit students. The experience, which I am still processing, was both rewarding and demanding. It changed me in ways that I have yet to fully comprehend. In what follows I want to reflect on the experience and what I have learned from it. The risk of speaking so personally is that it applies to no one but yourself. Nonetheless, I hope something here is of help to someone.

In an address to his clergy in Madras, India, Bishop Lesslie Newbigin once said: “If your people have learned to trust you as a pastor, you can handle the most controversial issues in the pulpit without fear. If they recognize the voice as that of the Good Shepherd, they will follow” (The Good Shepherd, p. 16). This neatly encapsulates one of the most important lessons I learned — to value relationship more than expertise. Very quickly I came to realize that my students were more open to what I had to say once they knew that I loved them. Once they knew I loved them and was seeking their good, they trusted me and could better receive what I offered.

More here-

https://livingchurch.org/covenant/2018/05/16/christian-discipleship-in-northern-canada/?platform=hootsuite

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Anglican Church votes in favor of same-sex marriage (Nigeria)

From Nigeria-

The blessing of same-sex marriage in the Anglican Church of New Zealand has just been approved.
Previously, priests were forbidden from offering this kind of blessing. They faced disciplinary action if they disobeyed.


This has all changed thanks something called "Motion 29," a resolution that recognizes "the Church's teaching on the nature of marriage [which] is to affirm marriage as between a man and a woman"; but allows priests to offer "a non-formulary service."


Reacting to the resolution, the Secretary-General of the Anglican Communion, Dr. Josiah Idowu-Fearon, said, "There has been a long, prayerful process in the province in reaching this point with deeply-held convictions on both sides of the debate. I hope and believe that this resolution recognized that difference without division is possible."


According to Premier, the Synod of the Anglican Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand, and Polynesia voted in favor for priests to be allowed to bless gay civil marriages or civil unions as long as it is not conducted in the church.


More here-

http://www.pulse.ng/communities/religion/homosexuality-anglican-church-supports-same-sex-marriage-id8376234.html

Anglican Church still divided over new bishop

From Barbados-

After two sittings separated by 19 days and 16 hours of voting, the Anglican Church here is no closer to electing a bishop to lead the Barbadian flock.

The House of Clergy and the House of Laity aborted yet another attempt today, having failed to reach consensus after six hours of voting.

They ended today in the same position as they did on April 25 after ten hours of voting and four ballots at the Ivan Harewood Centre of the Christ Church Parish Church to choose a successor to the retired John Holder.

As it did back then, the laity continued to throw its support behind youthful candidate Rev John Rogers, 45, rector of St George Parish Church, while the clergy backed his senior, Dr Jeffrey Gibson, 61, dean of The Cathedral of St Michael’s and All Angels.


More here-

https://barbadostoday.bb/2018/05/14/anglican-church-still-divided-over-new-bishop/

Renowned scholar John Dominic Crossan says Jesus was talking about God’s style, not a place in time

From Pennsylvania-

In first-century Roman-occupied Israel, when Jesus talked about the Kingdom of God, he wasn’t speaking of a place in space and time.

Rather, he was referring to the “ruling style of God,” said John Dominic Crossan, a scholar and author known for his writings on the historical Jesus.

“When Jesus used that term, he’s really asking you to imagine, what would this world be like if God sat on Caesar’s throne?” Crossan said when giving the Walters Garvin Lecture on May 4 at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lancaster.

Crossan, who spoke on “Jesus and the Kingdom of God,” also gave additional presentations at the church last Saturday and delivered the sermon at Sunday’s service.

The Irish-born Crossan, a former Roman Catholic priest and emeritus professor of religious studies at DePaul University, was co-chair of the Jesus Seminar, founded in 1985 for scholars interested in historical Jesus research. The group received media attention for its members using colored beads to indicate how likely it was that certain sayings actually came from Jesus.

More here-

https://lancasteronline.com/features/faith_values/renowned-scholar-john-dominic-crossan-says-jesus-was-talking-about/article_14325d8c-554a-11e8-9772-bf78fa8fc257.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=user-share

Brazilian Anglicans committed to authority of Bible launch new denomination

From Brazil-

A group of Anglican churches in Brazil have formed a new denomination in the country, thirteen years after they left the Episcopal Church (IEAB), the 19th province of the Anglican Communion.

 The launch of the new denomination Anglican Church in Brazil was celebrated on May 12 in a church near the city of Recife. Rev. Miguel Uchoa Cavalcanti was installed as the first Archbishop and Primate of the denomination. During the celebration, the Archbishop Greg Venables, Primate of South America, greeted the new denomination in a video message.   

ANGLICAN DIVISION AS PRO-LGBT POLICIES WERE IMPLEMENTED In 2005, the former Bishop of Recife “and ninety percent of the clergy of the diocese were excommunicated by the liberal Episcopal Church of Brazil”, according to a statement issued by Gafcon. A clash around Christian doctrine of marriage and sexuality emerged as the national Episcopal Church increasingly supported pro-LGBT policies.

See more: http://evangelicalfocus.com/world/3502/Brazilian_Anglicans_committed_to_authority_of_Bible_launch_new_denomination_

and here-

https://www.premier.org.uk/News/World/Conservative-Anglicans-form-new-Brazilian-denomination

Monday, May 14, 2018

Anglican Church of Canada elects first female archbishop

From Canada-

She did her masters in divinity at the same time as she completed her MBA. She was ordained as a priest in 1992 and worked at a parish while working as a brand manager for Procter & Gamble. Later, she juggled working as a rector with a consulting business in product marketing.

Skelton’s unorthodox background made her historic election as the 12th archbishop of the ecclesiastical province of B.C. and Yukon on the first ballot — the first female archbishop in the Anglican Church of Canada — all the more unexpected.

“Given that background I was rather astonished to be elected,” Skelton said, still in shock a day after the election Saturday when the church’s provincial electoral college chose her among three bishops who had agreed to stand for election.


More here-

http://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/anglican-church-of-canada-elects-first-female-archbishop