The Executive Committee of the General Convention (that body charged with carrying out the business of the GC between meetings) has taken the advice of the House of Bishops by declining to participate in Pastoral Scheme proposed by the Anglican Primates meeting this spring in Dar es Salaam (see the Executive Committee’s statement). There is no finger pointing in the statement. The Executive Committee simply points out that all the Episcopal Church USA has to offer to the larger Anglican Communion is itself in relationship. They point out that the basis of relationship within the Church is baptism, and that many of the baptized members of the ECUSA are gays and lesbians. The Executive Committee commits to continue to listen to our Anglican sisters and brothers, but makes no promises about where the spirit may or may not lead us in the future.
There is no apology in this statement, no shying away from what we have come to know about ourselves, no trying to say two things at once. It seems we have finally found the courage of our convictions. It feels good. When Advent had once taken the vote to become an Oasis Missouri congregation, we could begin to be straightforward with ourselves and with all who visited us and have since come to join. We are explicit in our affirmation of welcome of all persons, including gays and lesbians and the whole alphabet soup (GLBTQSA), the whole rainbow. That freed up a tremendous amount of energy that had been spent worrying about what would happen if we did jump in the pool. The statement of the Executive Committee feels the same way. We are what we are, let’s get on with it. We will listen, we will do everything we can to stay in relationship, but we won’t be who we aren’t, because then we are not in relationship honestly, and therefore not in relationship at all. Way to go.
See the Episcopal Majority’s comments also.