Hey everyone – Here is our chance to make our “sacred voices” known to the powers-that-be at 815, the Episcopal Church Center, the center of the national governance of The Episcopal Church (more particularly the Strategic Planning Commission – if that’s the right name).
Here is the link to the “STRATEGIC PLANNING AND THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH” survey.
Reading through the questions, the wanted outcome of the designers of the survey is pretty apparent. They have tipped their hand, and if the outcome does not match their expectations, I wonder whether the results will be acknowledged or whether they will rethink their already determine direction?
I added an addition comment at the end:
Of course, how some of these terms are defined will make a big difference. For example, a response to question number 4 is: “Focusing on God’s Mission as the centerpiece of our church.” What one reads into “God’s Mission” could lead the Church into being about the “Cure of Souls” or into being about doing similar things as do social service organizations and advocacy organizations. Are we talking about a “Church” or a social/advocacy organization as our public “brand” or “narrative?” Making the Church “vital” has no more to do with having 60% Hispanics as members as it does having 60% Caucasians as members. These are old paradigms that are becoming increasingly outdated and irrelevant to upcoming generations. Why are we still stuck in them?
The Church needs focus on its God given first priorities, salvation and formation. From those priorities come good works and not before, else we are just a non-profit organization absent of the Faith that has been passed down by our mothers and fathers for the past 2,000+ years.
As a gay priest, I don’t need reminding of my “victimhood,” but need reminding of the transformation work of the Holy Spirit in my life that comes first and foremost through salvation through Jesus Christ and my yielding of myself to God’s will. That is the Cure of Souls, the work of the Church. We are stuck in a mindset that relies on 1960 & 70’s definitions and understandings (multiculturalism, identity-politics, as examples). These are passing away, but too many people are reticent to understand or acknowledge this – to the future Church’s detriment.
I honestly feel for the current leadership of the Episcopal Church, because culture is passing them by and too many don’t want to recognize it. It must be very hard to accept that the direction they have taken the Church has not worked very well and is quickly becoming moot.