Skip to comments.Episcopal breakaway a microcosm, says Griswold
Posted on 04/30/2006 6:36:58 PM PDT by sionnsar
JACKSONVILLE, FL: Episcopal breakaway a microcosm, says Griswold
Episcopal Church USA leader in town for conference spanning internationally
By JEFF BRUMLEY The Times-Union April 30, 2006
The leader of the Episcopal Church USA said Bishop John Howard and his Jacksonville-based diocese face one the most dicey legal and theological situations in the nation because of parishes quitting the denomination over questions of biblical interpretation and human sexuality.
All or parts of nine congregations have left the 33,000-member Episcopal Diocese of Florida since November and some priests predict a "wave" of individuals may quit beginning this summer. Some of those congregations have refused to leave their buildings, and Howard is suing Redeemer Anglican Church in Jacksonville to force it from its Southside property.
"This is a more severe instance of what is happening on a smaller scale elsewhere" in the Episcopal Church, Bishop Frank Griswold, spiritual leader of the 2.4-million denomination, told The Florida Times-Union on Saturday. Griswold, 68, is in Jacksonville this weekend for a conference of senior American, Canadian and Cuban Episcopal priests.
Alarmed by the 2003 election of an openly-gay Episcopal bishop in New Hampshire, conservative parishes from Jacksonville to Tallahassee have formed a regional alliance and joined more conservative dioceses from as far away as Africa.
In an interview at St. John's Episcopal Cathedral downtown, Griswold said similar developments are occurring in "isolated" areas across the denomination and do not reflect " a mass movement across the church."
Howard's spokesman and chief of staff, the Rev. Canon Kurt Dunkle, said local dissension has been led by "a very small group of people who have been disproportionately vocal."
The Rev. Neil Lebhar, rector of Redeemer Anglican in Jacksonville and chairman of the recently-formed Anglican Alliance of North Florida, disagreed with those characterizations.
The alliance lists 16 member-congregations on its Web site. Some of those, Lebhar said, have yet to officially break from the diocese.
The Anglican Communion Network, a like-minded national organization, lists 200,000 individuals, 800 parishes in 10 dioceses as members.
"We think we are a growing movement in the Episcopal Church, which has been shrinking," Lebhar said.
Griswold, whose nine-year term as presiding bishop ends in November, said he stays in touch with Howard about developments in the diocese and expressed sadness over the parishes that have broken away from the denomination.
But he added that the denomination and its dioceses are winning most of the legal battles to retain church properties from parishes who leave.
In remarks to priests gathered at the cathedral Saturday morning, Griswold described the larger debate over sexuality -- which has divided the worldwide Anglican Communion to which the denomination belongs -- as God's way of forcing believers to open their hearts to alternative perspectives.
"Now God is saying, 'Let's get down to basics and be one body across the globe,'" Griswold said. "I find it fascinating and energizing."
This gentleman is trying to make lemonade out of all those lemons, except that the lemons are spoiled rotten.
I think this guy is mistaken and that God is probably saying "Come out from among them and be ye separate, my children."
I believe you are correct, this is probably to allow the goats to self-identify.
Sort of like what Satan did to Eve in the garden -- "forced" her to "open her heart" to an "alternative perspective".
Which god does Mr. Griswold* worship? The God of the Bible isn't interested in anyone's heart being opened to any "alternative perspectives" except for his own, the "alternative perspective" he had from Calvary.
*Sorry, I don't and won't recognize that he's anything more than a Christian layman wearing pretty vestments. And I'm having some trouble with the "Christian" part.
"Episcopal breakaway a microcosm..."
... a virus-filled microcosm.
If The Rt. Rev. Vickie Gene Robinson had any love for his church, he would immediately resign as bishop and beg for unity...
Griswald: "It saddens me that parishes are leaving. But on the bright side, we're winning the legal battles for their property"
"Again the devil took Him to a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor, and he said to Him 'All these I will give You if You fall down and worship me'. Jesus said to him 'Away with you Satan! for it is written 'Worship the LORD your God and serve only Him'". Matthew 3:8-10
"... a virus-filled microcosm."
The Episcopal Church helped lead me to Judaism.
"The Episcopal Church helped lead me to Judaism."
Is it safe to say, considering their present state, that they did not present true Christianity to you?
"He that saith not Anathema to those in heresy, let him be anathema!" Seventh Ecumenical Council
But I have a day job! The list would be too long!
Perhaps, but I'd wager that you wouldn't knowingly commune with any of them.
Though I've always recognized Jesus as a great rabbi, I had never come to see him as any more "divine" then anyone else.
9/11 though finally moved me from what I then thought was life-long agnosticism to belief.
After a lifetime of "church-hopping", I finally got up enough gumption to go to a Conservative, and then to an Orthodox synagogue, and have looked back fondly and nostalgically, but never regretfully since.
Though don't get me wrong. I think that the United States could never have been founded without Christianity. It's just not for me.
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