Monday, 30 July 2007

The Pain of Separation and of Staying

We've lost some people from StB over the last 13 or 14 months because of decisions made at the last two General Synods. It weakens us and it hurts.

Some thoughts from a couple of Episcopalian priests who are staying for now; first Dr Ephraim Radner...
Some here think that I intend simply to “go down with the ship”, as some kind of virtue. That is not the case: there is no “intention” involved. I am bound to a ship – the Anglican Communion – that is currently “going down”. That is what a vow consists of.
When I was at seminary almost 20 years ago I remember the distinct and, I thought at the time, humourous, feeling that I was tying myself to the mast of a sinking ship. Laff! Laff! I, too, am bound to this ship until I receive further orders.

Read the rest of Radner's piece here.

And then, there's Fr Tony Clavier:
IF the Episcopal Church casts itself adrift from the Anglican Communion in a complete and total fashion, or is drummed out of the regiment by recognized authority, then many of us shall have to make shift for ourselves as best we can. But while it remains possible, while we remain free, while we are enabled to preach the Word and administer the Sacraments and give mutual care to the faithful, we are not free, on the basis of our personal opinions, however widely shared, to abandon the church. I do not doubt that many in good faith and conscience feel called out to other places and fields -an “otherness” which may be next door- and I really have no quarrel with their enthusiastic recommendations, but I am haunted by the old story which suggests that when people leave the church, even because of persecution and suffering, they weaken both the church they leave and that which they erect. "
It also "remains possible" for me in the Anglican Church of Canada (as maddening and frustrating as it is), and I, too, remain free and am enabled to preach the Word and administer the Sacraments and give mutual care to the faithful. Neither am I free at the moment, on the basis of my personal opinions, distress and distaste for what has transpired, to abandon my post.