Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Fascinating that The Episcopal Church has served as such a horrible example to other denominations—that’s a good thing that has come from the actions of our Presiding Bishop, as well as the actions of our bishops.

From the Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, where there is more:
In what appears to be a first for the Presbyterian Church USA, the denomination’s 45 local congregations have been invited to take part in a prayerful and collaborative process aimed at negotiating a reconciliation or amicable divorce.
The First Presbyterian Church of Oostburg is the first congregation in southeastern Wisconsin to petition to leave the Presbyterian Church USA following a 2010 vote approving the ordination of openly gay and lesbian clergy in July 2011.
On Feb. 1, Milwaukee’s Zeidler Center for Public Discussion will mediate a church-wide conversation over that request in a process that will focus not just on money and property, but mission and what it means to be part of a faith community.
My favorite part of the article, though, is this one:
In the end, the Presbytery doesn’t want Oostburg to leave, Howard said, suggesting the inclusion of dissonant voices helps the broader church in its discernment.
“The challenge is how do we honor them as a church of Jesus Christ and at the same time honor the commitment to the PCUSA, which means there’s a financial piece there,” Howard said.
I’m not certain how the forced membership inclusion of a church that recognizes that the leadership of its presbytery doesn’t share the same faith is going to “help the broader church in its discernment.” But not to worry . . . “there’s a financial piece” that will make the forced membership inclusion all entirely unnecessary.

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