Tag Archives: same-gender marriage

More New England bishops weigh in

In his “Articles of Faith” blog on Friday, Michael Paulson updated his July 21 Boston Globe story on New England bishops’ response to General Convention’s action regarding “generous pastoral response.”


Bishops share impressions, invite members to Aug. 13 hearing

With the Episcopal Church’s triennial General Convention having concluded last week, the Diocese of Massachusetts’ bishops today wrote to diocesan clergy and lay leadership to share some impressions and an invitation to an Aug. 13 hearing.  The text of the letter follows.   Continue reading

“Pastoral generosity” vote tally still pending

It’s the last legislative day, and the House of Deputies spent this morning’s session mostly in debate of resolution C056, calling for the collection and development of theological and liturgical resources for blessing same-gender relationships.  Of note to dioceses in states such as Massachusetts where same-gender marriage is legal, the resolution also says that bishops “may provide generous pastoral response to meet the needs of members of the church.”

Some of the ongoing debate has been focused on exactly what “generous pastoral response” means.  Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, SSJE said in this Religion News Service story posted at Beliefnet that he is not putting forth an interpretation until he’s had a chance to confer further with colleagues and members of the diocese.

“I am pleased they gave us the pastoral generosity we need to deal with our context in Massachusetts,” Bishop Shaw said.

The results of this morning’s vote by orders in the House of Deputies were not announced before the break for the convention’s closing Eucharist at 11:30 a.m. Pacific time.  The final legislative session of convention resumes at 2 p.m.

How roomy?: A Day Nine message from Bishop Cederholm

Bishop Bud Cederholm writes:  

Bishop Bud Cederholm in the House of Bishops yesterday

Bishop Bud Cederholm in the House of Bishops yesterday

“I realized these two weeks how much I feel at home in the Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion.  It’s not always a comfortable home, but it is where I am loved and accepted by all.  It is the strength and gift of the Episcopal Church to be a haven and home to all people, including those we disagree with.

“During the conversations regarding blessing same-sex marriages and unions, bishops on either side spoke passionately about making room for each other when we disagree.  I go home knowing we have sincerely sought to listen to each other and sought to have our resolutions reflect that roominess.  I like that in our congregations but am heartbroken when people with different agendas do not make room and engage in power struggles (overt and covert) leading to conflict.  I go home knowing our call continues to make room for all people.  Every congregation and diocese, like every home, is charged with making sure there is generous hospitality and room for all.  How roomy does it feel in your home?  Your home congregation?  Our diocese?  Admittedly, we all have work to do in making room for all.   Continue reading

Economy and generosity: A Day Eight message from Bishop Shaw

07/15/09:  Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, SSJE writes:

Bishop Laura Ahrens of Connecticut and Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, SSJE, on the floor of the House of Bishops today.

Bishop Laura Ahrens of Connecticut and Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, SSJE, on the floor of the House of Bishops today.

“Convention buzz today has been partly about the budget for the next triennium.  According to the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget and Finance this proposed budget of just over $141 million for the triennium (down from $164 million for 2007-2009) was built around ‘hope, mission, accountability, transparency and honesty.’   Continue reading

True selves, shaken and stirred: A Day Seven message from Bishop Gayle Harris

07/14/09:  Bishop Gayle E. Harris writes:

Bishop Gayle E. Harris at start of Sunday's General Convention Eucharist.  Thanks to Tim Vanover for this photo.

Bishop Gayle E. Harris at the start of Sunday's General Convention Eucharist. Thanks to Tim Vanover for this photo.

“Ubuntu:  A word, a theme, an encounter.  As we continue through the myriad words and paper and amidst new and renewed relationships, this theme of General Convention is so obvious and yet hidden.  It is like seeing the forest and yet not the trees.

“The concept and engagement of ubuntu, meaning ‘I am because we are,’ is an essential aspect of every General Convention.  We meet together because we are Episcopalians united by Christ’s love and a common liturgical and theological heritage.  But ubuntu fully understood goes beneath the superficial mere acknowledgment of connection.  It also requires us to bring our whole self to each other:  in ubuntu I must, we must, present our true selves to each other.

“Today the House of Bishops began discussing legislation calling for the study and development of liturgical material for use in dioceses located in states where same-gender marriage or civil unions are permitted by law. Continue reading

Rejection stinks, but all is not lost: A Day Six message from Bishop Cederholm

07/13/09:  Bishop Bud Cederholm writes:

Bishop Bud Cederholm and deputy Jane Gould compare notes at Day Six's end.

Bishop Bud Cederholm and deputy Jane Gould compare notes at Day Six's end.

“Rejection stinks.  My resolution to change the annual parochial report of the Episcopal Church to include costs and units of energy consumed by a congregation did not make it through the House of Deputies.  Despite my, I hope, stirring plea that global warming (and its effects) is the most critical moral, ethical and justice issue the church faces, delegates could not envision how reporting on energy consumption fits into the parochial report, one argument being that most would simply leave that item blank.  My argument (based on our experience in Massachusetts when we asked our congregations to report, and about one-third did) that it was an attention getter and led many congregations to want to do something to reduce their energy consumption and carbon footprint, did not carry the day. 

“All is not lost.   Continue reading