Skip to comments.'I can't be unmade a bishop,' says Robinson
Posted on 11/11/2005 4:04:27 PM PST by sionnsar
America's first openly gay bishop talks to Pat Ashworth
THE Anglican Communion is the window on the real world for a prosperous and too-powerful country that has lost its way, says Bishop Gene Robinson, of the Episcopal Church in the United States.
"It's a very precious thing to me and to us. Being linked to Anglicans around the world has provided us with a necessary and crucial balance to our own life - a window into what life is like in most of the world," he said on Saturday.
The loss of such a connection would be deeply felt in the Church, but would be a non-issue for the nation, Bishop Robinson said, despite the Episcopal Church's history of leadership disproportionate to its numbers - only one per cent of the US population.
"My hope is that our gifts and our passions and our faith are important to the rest of the world as well."
A belief that the Primates do not necessarily speak for their provinces is something he passionately wants to convey. "It's a fallacy to assume that Peter Akinola speaks for the Communion. Will a listening process change Peter Akinola' s mind about this issue? Probably not.
"It's no surprise to me that Peter Akinola has trouble comprehending the context in which we find ourselves in America. To be a homosexual in Nigeria is to be arrested and imprisoned; so how would Peter ever have the opportunity to meet a faithful and loyal and prayerful Anglican who also happens to be gay or lesbian, and get to know them and have his heart changed by that?"
Bishop Robinson has no doubt that the danger facing the Communion is serious and deep, but he does not believe that the American Church is heading towards "an inevitable trainwreck". "We are irreconcilable only if we choose to be. Reconciliation is the ministry we are all called to, and so to declare ourselves out of communion with one another is simply an infraction against God."
The rest of the world does not understand how the US Church works, he said. "In our polity, the Church speaks only when the laity, the clergy, and the bishops speak at the General Convention. It's what makes our Church so very different from the provinces of the Anglican Communion."
Knowing the consequences of his consecration, would he have done anything differently? He paused and reflected: "It's very difficult to say. On the one hand, we have learned that to make such a momentous decision without more consultation was perhaps inappropriate on our parts. But you have to understand, that consultation could not have happened until I was elected, and no one knew I was going to be elected. Being nominated is easy; being elected is hard.
"All I can tell you is that the General Convention prayerfully and thoughtfully considered this and agonised over it. It was not some flippant or mindless or prayerless action."
He acknowledges that he could be wrong and maybe should not even be speculating, but his personal view is that he does not see the American Church moving backwards. "I can't be unmade a bishop," he said. "We will continue to nourish these relationships around the globe, and trust that the communion that is there will actually win over the voices that are speaking for division."
The Archbishop of Canterbury was in a "nearly impossible position", he conceded. "I think he's doing what needs to be done, and exactly what an Archbishop of Canterbury should do: working to hold the Anglican Communion together. I think he's working on that night and day."
If he had not been consecrated, would the Anglican Communion be in the position it finds itself now? "I agree with the many, many voices who said this was a divide looking for a reason to happen. Perhaps it provided some fuel to the fire, but much of the divide we see was in the making long before anyone heard of Gene Robinson."
PINK-SASHED volunteers manned the doors, but there were no protesters at Saturday's service to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Changing Attitude, where the Anglican Communion's first openly homosexual bishop had been invited to speak.
Restrictions had been imposed on the visit of the Bishop of New Hampshire, the Rt Revd Gene Robinson. It was very important that "we keep to the ground rules," as agreed with the Bishop of London and the Archbishop of Canterbury, said the Revd Nicholas Holtam, the Vicar of St Martin-in-the-Fields, where the service was held. "Bishop Robinson will be one among us during the service and will speak afterwards."
On the Thursday evening, Bishop Robinson met informally with the Archbishop of Canterbury as part of the Archbishop's commitment to listening to all sides of the debate in the Anglican Communion about homosexuality. No details of the meeting were released.
Speaking just before the service, one of the Changing Attitude trustees said there had been heavy pressure from conservative Evangelicals in London diocese to try to stop the service, or at least to move it from church premises.
"They lobbied the Bishop of London, but we have been careful with the ground rules. Bishop Robinson is not here with his cope and mitre, and I think it is very interesting there are no protesters."
About 400 people attended the service, most in support of Changing Attitude, which works "for gay and lesbian affirmation within the Anglican Church", but some came simply to hear Bishop Robinson.
Bishop Robinson processed up the aisle with other clergy, but took no part until the service was finished. Dressed informally in a suit with purple shirt and clerical collar, he spoke for an hour, including time for questions.
"I am not here to talk about a social agenda, as many fear, nor to grind an axe, but to witness to the good things of God." He shared "snapshots" from his life - how his marriage had failed and how he had publicly admitted he was gay - as well as from when he first felt God had called him to the epsicopate.
He spoke openly about the reaction to his election as bishop, first in the diocese and then when the General Convention ratified it. He said the death threats, hate mail, and media attention had been particularly hard for his two daughters, one of whom had just become a mother, and he had continually sought solace in scripture.
"At the General Convention there are normally a few reporters bored to tears. The year I was elected, there were 375."
He spoke of "the humiliation in the UK of Jeffrey John", now Dean of St Albans, over his selection and then withdrawal as Bishop of Reading. "I got an amazing email from him, that after what he had been through he would have been very disappointed if I stood down." He added that he had met Dr John for the first time at a Changing Attitude reception on the previous evening.
He finished by advising Changing Attitude members not to get caught up beyond everything else with the issue of sexuality. "Work on your own stuff. Coming out is just the beginning. Offer your gifts to the Church, not just your sexuality. Do not talk about homosexuality and Gene Robinson, but talk about God. You must have other issues, including not forgetting the poor."
May Robinson's "taketh away" come soon.
What aload of crap.
In the eyes of God he never has had it. It is illegitimate...and he is a non-office holder. He may be occupying the office on Earth, but it is not so in Heaven.
Well, if he views himself as a "window" of sorts, no doubt ( and with apologies to Alfred Hitchcock, it's a "rear window."
In my best Simpson's fat comic book guy voice:
WORST - EPISCOPO - EVER!
What a selfish asshole.
<< What aload of crap. >>
Wouldn't that be a a come-on to a sodomist?
Divorced people may never be married in my [Singapore] home Anglican Cathedral. There are no exceptions.
In Robinson's, dissolute liberines who desert and divorce their wives and abandon their children and enter into and maintain depraved relationships with other sodomists may become what are called "bishops." And then grant themselves licence to talk down to those who, as do the Most Reverend Doctor Peter J Akinola DD Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of All Nigeria and my Bishop and every other throughout Asia and in every corner of the so-called "third world," call the abomination to which Robinson has succumbed, the depravity in which he elects to "live" and the degeneracy into which he is inevitable spiralling, by their names.
""I can't be unmade a bishop," he said."
What a silly man; of course he can. Worse, a council, if Anglicanism has such a thing, could proclaim him ANATHEMA!
TITLE IV ECCLESIASTICAL DISCIPLINE
CANON 1: Of Offenses for Which Bishops, Priests, or Deacons May Be Presented and Tried, and Of Inhibitions
Sec. 1. A Bishop, Priest, or Deacon of this Church shall be liable to Presentment and Trial for the following offenses, viz.:
(c) Holding and teaching publicly or privately, and advisedly, any doctrine contrary to that held by this Church.
(d) Violation of the Rubrics of the Book of Common Prayer.
(e) Violation of the Constitution or Canons of the General Convention.
(f) Violation of the Constitution or Canons of the Diocese in which the person is canonically resident.
(g) Violation of the Constitution or Canons of a Diocese of this Church wherein the person may have been located temporarily.
(h) Any act which involves a violation of Ordination vows.
(1) If a Charge against a Priest or Deacon alleges an act or acts which involve a violation of ordination vows and specifies as the act that the Priest or Deacon has disobeyed or disregarded a Pastoral Direction of the Bishop having authority over such person, the Charge must be made by the Bishop giving the Pastoral Direction or by the Ecclesiastical Authority of that Diocese or by another Bishop if the Bishop who issued the Pastoral Direction has resigned, retired, died or is unable to act and shall set out the Pastoral Direction alleged to have been disregarded or disobeyed and wherein the disregard or failure to obey constitutes a violation of ordination vows.
Unless the Charge by the Bishop and the Presentment by the Diocesan Review Committee comply with the foregoing provisions, no finding of a violation based on an act of disregarding a Pastoral Direction of or failing to obey the Bishop having authority over the person charged may be made.
(2) In order for the disregard or disobedience of a Pastoral Direction to constitute a violation of ordination vows the Pastoral Direction must have been a solemn warning to the Priest or Deacon; it must have been in writing and set forth clearly the reasons for the Pastoral Direction; it must have been given in the capacity of the pastor, teacher and canonical overseer of the Priest or Deacon; it must have been neither capricious nor arbitrary in nature nor in any way contrary to the Constitution and Canons of the Church, both national and diocesan; and it must have been directed to some matter which concerns the Doctrine, Discipline or Worship of this Church or the manner of life and behavior of the Priest or Deacon concerned. Upon Trial under any such Presentment, the question of whether the disregard or disobedience of the Pastoral Direction specified constitutes a violation of ordination vows is a matter of ultimate fact upon which testimony may be offered.
(i) Habitual neglect of the exercise of the Ministerial Office, without cause; or habitual neglect of Public Worship, and of the Holy Communion, according to the order and use of this Church.
(j) Conduct Unbecoming a Member of the Clergy. ....
Sec. 5 (a) If a Bishop is charged with an Offense or Offenses or serious acts are complained of to the Presiding Bishop that would constitute the grounds for a Charge of an Offense and, in the opinion of the Presiding Bishop, the Charge or complaint of serious acts is supported by sufficient facts, the Presiding Bishop may issue a Temporary Inhibition. The consent of a majority of All the Members of the Standing Committee is required for Bishops with jurisdiction.
(b) Any Temporary Inhibition shall:
(i) be in writing,
(ii) set forth the reason for its issuance,
(iii) be specific in its terms,
(iv) define the Offense or Offenses charged or serious acts complained of,
(v) describe in reasonable detail the act or acts inhibited,
(vi) be promptly served upon the Bishop to be inhibited, and
(vii) become effective upon being served upon the Bishop to be inhibited.
(c) A Temporary Inhibition may be issued without prior written or oral notice to the Bishop.
(d) Any Bishop against whom a Temporary Inhibition has been issued, modified, or extended may request a hearing concerning the Temporary Inhibition before the Review Committee, which shall hear the same at the earliest possible time, but not later than thirty days after the date of receipt of the request. The Review Committee by a two-thirds vote may dissolve or modify the Temporary Inhibition. The Church Attorney and Presiding Bishop shall be given notice of such hearing and each shall be permitted to attend and be heard or to designate a representative to attend and be heard.
(e) At any time, the Presiding Bishop may dissolve or modify the terms of a Temporary Inhibition. If the Bishop is a Bishop with jurisdiction, the consent of a majority of All the Members of the Standing Committee shall be required for such a dissolution or modification.
(f) A Temporary Inhibition shall continue in force and effect until the earlier of (i) the issuance of an Inhibition as otherwise permitted by this Title, (ii) the withdrawal of the Charge or the allegations, (iii) the refusal of the Review Committee to make a Presentment on the Charges alleged, (iv) a dissolution of the Temporary Inhibition, (v) imposition of Sentence following a voluntary submission to discipline under Canon IV.2.9, or (vi) a period of one year measured from the date of service of the Temporary Inhibition.
Sec. 6. If a Presentment has been made by the Review Committee against a Bishop, or if a Bishop has been convicted in a criminal Court of Record in a cause involving immorality, or if a judgment has been entered against a Bishop in a civil Court of Record in a case involving Immorality, the Presiding Bishop may issue an Inhibition to the Bishop until after the Judgment of The Court for the Trial of a Bishop becomes final. The consent of a majority of All the Members of the Standing Committee is required for Bishops with jurisdiction.
Sec. 7. The Temporary Inhibition shall be an extraordinary remedy, to be used sparingly and limited to preventing immediate and irreparable harm to individuals or to the good order of the Church. ....
Sec. 9. If an alleged commission of an Offense has been made known to the Presiding Bishop, or if Charges of an Offense have been filed, or if a Presentment has been issued against a Bishop, the Bishop may, with the consent of the Presiding Bishop, voluntarily submit to the discipline of the Church at any time before Judgment by an Ecclesiastical Trial Court, and waive all rights to formal Charges, Presentment, Trial and further opportunity to offer matters in excuse or mitigation, as applicable, and accept a Sentence imposed and pronounced by the Presiding Bishop.
Sec. 10. The Waiver and Voluntary Submission shall be evidenced by a written instrument, which shall contain:
(i) the name of the Bishop,
(ii) a reference to the Canon specifying the Offense,
(iii) general information sufficient to identify the Offense, and
(iv) a statement that the Bishop is aware of the Sentence to be imposed and the effect thereof, and shall be signed and Acknowledged by the Bishop, after opportunity to consult with and obtain advice from independent legal counsel of the Bishops choosing.
If the Bishop has so consulted with legal counsel, that counsel shall also be identified in the Waiver and Voluntary Submission. Legal counsel shall not be the Presiding Bishops Chancellor. The Waiver and Voluntary Submission may be withdrawn by the Bishop within three days of execution by the Bishop and thereafter shall be effective and irrevocable. The Church Attorney, each Complainant and Victim shall be given an opportunity to be heard on the Sentence by the Presiding Bishop who is to impose and pronounce Sentence prior to the execution of the Waiver and Voluntary Submission.
Sec. 11 . Except as otherwise provided in this Canon, the Sentence so imposed and pronounced shall be as if it were imposed and pronounced after Judgment by an Ecclesiastical Trial Court and as if all time provided for all required notices and the right of the Bishop to offer matters of excuse and mitigation had been given and expired.
Sec. 12. No Bishop shall have the right to appeal the Sentence imposed and pronounced under this Canon to a Court of Review of the Trial of a Bishop, and the Sentence shall be final for all purposes.
Sec. 13. Where a Sentence is to be imposed and pronounced, as a condition of the acceptance of the Waiver and Voluntary Submission to discipline, the Presiding Bishop may require the resignation of the Bishop from ecclesiastical and related secular offices, upon such terms and conditions as the Presiding Bishop may deem to be just and proper.
Sec. 14. In order to become effective, prior to the imposition and pronouncement of the Sentence, the Review Committee must approve the Sentence without conducting further proceedings.
There is a whole lot more to this - you can check it out at this site.
What a horribly selfish, egotistical little man. He is pulling the Episcopal Church apart and he really doesn't care. He is not and never was a Godly man. Many will suffer because of this man.
" See #12"
Indeed I did. It seems (sniff, sniff) a tad legalistic wouldn't you say? How about just doing it the old way, the Orthodox way, Gal 1:8-9, on the first Sunday of Great Lent?
"Realizing that she [The Church] is unable to do anything for their salvation, in view of their stubbornness and hardness of heart, the earthly church lifts them up to the judgement of God. That judgment is merciful unto repentant sinners, but fearsome for the stubborn enemies of God. "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God ... for our God is a consuming fire" (Heb 10:31; 12:29)."
Actually, he's not a bishop. I believe the accurate term is "heresiarch."
"Hell is paved with the skulls of Bishops." -- St. John Chrysostom
Haven't the African bishops already done that, in fact if not in name?
Taking a Catholic perspective, Robinson never was properly consecrated as a bishop because the Anglican Church lost its sacramental episcopate when it lapsed into the Protestant heresy.
He can't be unmade what he never was.
I am curious, from a Catholic perspective, does the Anglican Church have apostolic succession?
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