Sunday, July 01, 2012

Occupy 815

The past few weeks have seen some scary goings on in the Episcopal church. We had the draft budget for the next triennium thrown into confusion by a last minute separate proposed budget put forth by Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, who has no authority to present a budget, but that isn't going to stop her. Then we have the complaints filed against nine bishops of the church which must have passed her eyes on the way to the Inquisitor's desk.

All this in a church that is dying by degree; one that is preparing to sacrifice its children upon the altar of Moloch as it gets ready to authorize rites for same sex couples next week in General Convention 2012.

All these things have the expected effect on those of us opposed to the death march of Shori and GC. We cry at the loss of the innocents, we shake our fists at the apostates, but in the end we are forced to deal with the ashes left in her wake.

Of course, the Presiding Bishop just presides over the House of Bishops and can't be blamed for all the evil going on in the church today.

Or can she?

You see, the Episcopal church has made the argument in court that it is a hierarchal church and therefore the courts should stay out of any property disputes in TEc. Some courts have bought this argument, others (the Supreme Court of South Carolina) have not.

In a hierarchal church, when bad things happen, the buck has to stop at the top. The PB might argue that General Convention is the top, but she is not acting that way.

So if she is going to act like the head of the church, let her take the heat from the new movement that I am announcing today, the Occupy 815 movement.

This movement, in keeping with the precedent set by the other Occupy group, does not really need a mission statement or a clear listing of its beliefs.

All we need is a T-shirt.

And maybe a good folk song.

H/T you know who.

It is too late to rally the troops to protest outside General Convention next week, besides, there probably won't be much press coverage of our failing denomination.

It'll probably be too hot anyway.

I think I'll just occupy my cave. 


  1. Anonymous9:13 AM

    "In a hierarchal church, when bad things happen, the buck has to stop at the top. The PB might argue that General Convention is the top,"

    How can General Convention be considered to be "at the top?" After all, it is dissolved as soon as the meeting is over, its deputies satter, and that GC is no longer accountable to anyone.

  2. Anon,

    I assume you meant to type "deputies scatter."

    Correct! If General Convention is the head of the hierarchy, it is a neat way of having an unaccountable hierarchy, one that can point back to a temporarily convened body as to blame for anything and everything. Of course who is doing the pointing back. Identify that person, and you identify the hierachess herself. It is the old "not me" method used by children.

    Yikes! I am about to go down the line of argument that this is The Lord of the Flies alll over again.

  3. Pewster,stay cool in your cave. It is blasted hot in this state as you well know. I doubt it is worth our collective time to protest anything. However, you could have a word with some of your deputation if you know of any of them. I know a couple of ours. They already know mine and hubby's opinion.

  4. Alexi, I'll send them note and a T-shirt.

  5. I am always dumbfounded how folks having found their POV is in the minority in a group make a point of hanging around where they feel they are unwanted (even if that may not be the case) making snarky comments rather than moving on or resolving to be the loyal opposition and working for the good of the organization.

    It reminds me of Jonah hanging out around Nineveh waiting for God to do what he (Jonah) thought should have happened to the Ninevites...

    Perhaps folks in the pews in TEC do not trust the episcopate given the behavior of Iker, Duncan, et al and someone, not necessarily at 815, filed a complaint?

    Perhaps some folks feel that the episcopate giving "aid and comfort" to folks like Iker in his suit is a horrific betrayal of the Diocese of FT Worth and TEC - even if that was not the intention of the bishops?

    Perhaps folks feel it is time to settle the proper role and responsibility of the episcopate AND the various legislative bodies in the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society of the US in the 21st century?

    Do I necessarily agree with or support everything that the current administration of the Church? No. But I don't find trashing individuals or engaging in ad hominem attacks helpful or Christ like....


  6. SFiTC,

    In the process of exposing a false teacher, and or false teachings, the loyal opposition has to expect that many will make your mistake which is to consider such an exposé to be an "ad hominem" attack.

  7. Anonymous1:07 AM

    Pewster, I am a reasonably well educated and well read Episcopalian, and I can't make heads or tails of your complaint----I don't understand the writing from TEC and I don't understand what you are saying. I THINK we are both members of the same parish but I am not entirely sure who you are--always enjoy your viewpoint, but what is going on>

  8. Anon,

    "What is going on>" is the decades old shift in power from Diocesan Bishops to the offices of the Presiding Bishop. This shift is accelerating as Church finances and attendance is declining. Therefore we see retired Bishops and conservative Bishops being charged with breach of the doctrine and discipline of the church while wild, revisionist Bishops and priests run wild. We see church fights over the things we shouldn't be arguing about as Christians, property and money.

    Like the OWS movement which had no intelligible argument, all the Occupy 815 movement needs is a building in NYC to protest, a few scraggly looking folks with signs and T-shirts, a good folk song or two, fair weather, and hordes of T.V. reporters. So, my argument does not need to make sense.

    I was thinking of substituting sackcloth for the T-shirts, and ashes on our heads for whatever foreign substances the OWS folks were inhaling, but the point of it is that like the OWS crowd, the Occupy 815 crowd will accomplish nothing at all by such tactics, and will only accomplish anything positive by getting off our duffs and getting to actual WORK!

    And what is the work that we are supposed to do?

    You know the answer to that one.

  9. Anon - what you also have to understand is that you are also reading the Pewswer's opinions - he tends to label anyone who doesn't agree with his point of view as a Revisionist - and if he really seriously in disagreement he labels you a heretic. I have been called both by him. Form your own opinion - use many grains of salt.

    1. Average Jane,

      That is a terrible assumption, but there are some steps you can take to see if the shoe fits.

      Do you employ post modern approaches to interpreting the Bible?

      Do you utilize critical theory, gender studies, cultural criticism, metacommentary, or media studies when interpreting scripture?

      Do you read a "gender neutral" translation of the Bible.

      Then you might be a revisionist (which opens the door for heresy to creep in).

      Do you spread revisionist views such as the blessed nature of same sex relationships or favor the development of a Christian style marriage ceremony for same sex couples?

      Then you might be a false teacher (the preferred terminology) like our Presiding Bishop.

  10. Anonymous5:37 PM

    I offer the thought, Underground Pewster, that if it is unChristian to fight over property and money, then all the secessionists have ever had to do is hand over what they have taken from TEC.

    As for post modern approaches to Bible friend, differing approaches to texts are as old as the battles between Antioch and Alexandria! As for gender neutral translations: why does that cause such offense? Do you believe God the Father is really male?! Does it not seem reasonable that persons might better relate to narratives when they can see themselves included?

    I find it curious that everyone is up in arms over the Intake Officer's actions which should NOT be public knowledge at this point in time.

    We do NOT know who filed the complaints - it might very well be a member of the Episcopal Diocese of Ft Worth laity wrongly believing that the bishops were trying to support Iker and deciding to stop it...

    And perhaps we also need to talk about not only TEC hierarchy but about a bishop's role and responsibilities in 21st Century North America and their accountability to the Laity of the Church and the denomination in which their episcopate is ordained and recognized....


  11. Anon,

    Secessionist is not the proper term.

    Example: gender neutral translations that eliminate the "Son of man" O.T. reference in Daniel 7:13 (NRSV) have a problem since Jesus used the gender specific term in the the N.T.

    The intake officer sent out the letters to the Bishops. It is appropriate for those bishops to let their standing committees and people know that they have these complaints reported.

    If it were up to me, I would walk away from all church buildings and leave the empty shells to TEc. Eearthly property is not what we should be all about.

    So Anon, is it okay for any entity to unilaterally establish a trust over a property to which they are not named on the deed?