Over at Rev. Susan Russell's blog (An Inch At A Time), she has posted a letter sent to all bishops in advance of the Lambeth Conference this summer in England. One way of looking at this is that the Archbishop of Canterbury is outlining some guiding principles for how these leaders of Anglicanism will go about their business. His frame, appropriately enough, is the Holy Spirit.
It is a good letter. It is an attempt to find that common meeting place where the Church (the Communion) can come together as one in the Spirit, one with Christ.
One without the one who is that one.
As I noted in the prior posting, I do not support the idea of straight people talking about us and not with us. And while the focus of the church should not be solely on lesbians and gays, our continued exclusion and second-class status within the church is a problem that the Episcopal Church has been wrestling with and in discernment about for a number of years now and it is an important issue, and it is time to stop the nonsense. The fact that gay Anglicans in Nigeria face possible death and the Primate in that country seems content to let such violence go on is an indication that there is a need for some serious soul-searching and reconciliation with the lesbian and gay community of the world.
It is awfully hard for me as a "queer" who believes that Christ died and rose again for my sake to hold my own in my largely agnostic-to-atheist LGBT-community and remain true to my beliefs when the leaders of my faith are content with letting me sit on the outside of the gate while they sip cocktails and talk in lofty terms about the "oneness" of our mission in the world. What am I to say when my gay brothers and sisters point to such hypocrisy as reason enough to remain hateful toward Christianity? What am I to say when the loudest voices in Christendom are those of the liars and cheaters and deceivers of the true message of God's love for all?
Again, my "gay agenda" is an inclusive and loving Jesus who challenges us to be as equally inclusive and loving. Tough to do, but it is what he asks of us. I'm game. Sure wish the ABC would let us play along!
Come, thou long expected Jesus,
born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us,
let us find our rest in thee.
Come on! Open the gates and let us in! We want to be in communion with you!