Sunday, February 28, 2016

Why Should It Be Wasting The Soil?

This Sunday's Gospel reading is from Luke 13:1-9 which begins with Jesus' teaching on the consequences of unrepentance, and ends with a seemingly unrelated parable.

At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, ‘Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.’ 
Then he told this parable: ‘A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, “See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?” He replied, “Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig round it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.” ’

The parable of the fig tree is reassuring to those of us who have been unfruitful that we have been given a second chance, perhaps the manure for us is the blood of Christ which Jesus poured out upon us sinners. Now that we have been fertilized, we had better become fruitful or else we will be cut down (and probably thrown into the fire) like an unproductive fig tree.

The parable ties in with two analogies that appear later in Chapter 13 of Luke (although these were not part of the reading in most churches today),

18 He said therefore, ‘What is the kingdom of God like? And to what should I compare it? 19 It is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in the garden; it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.’ 
20 And again he said, ‘To what should I compare the kingdom of God? 21 It is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.’

The two analogies are also about productivity and growth although they are less personal and refer to a loftier subject, the Kingdom of God. The seed or yeast grow on their own and, at the time of the Gospel, the mechanism by which they grew would have been a complete mystery to Jesus' audience. The message: We cannot say exactly how God's kingdom grows, but it grows nonetheless.

I have heard these stories used both to encourage people to try to grow the Church and to reassure people that the Kingdom of God will grow in spite of our efforts. Which is right? Are we to sit in our pews and let God do His thing, or are we to go forth and multiply?

I believe that when we go forth and multiply, and by that I mean sharing the Good News, God is doing His thing, but when we sit in our pews and fail to produce fruit, we are being unresponsive to God's sacrifice and we deserve the consequences.

This does not necessarily mean that the static, un-growing Church is automatically condemned to the hewer's ax, for there may be small bits of spiritual growth here and there that are productive, but I think that these stories teach us that we need to take a good hard look at what we have done with what God has given us and to blossom with whatever fruit we have been blessed to produce. And lastly, to give God thanks and credit for He is the one who is the owner, the gardener, the sower, the fertilizer, and of course, the reaper.   

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

A Wandering Pewster I

My oldest friend, Wallace Hartley, has been following my personal situation and sent me his spin on things with apologies to Gilbert and Sullivan's "A Wandering Minstrel I" from "The Mikado".

A wandering pewster I —
A thing of lowly aspirations,
For hymns, anthems, and sermons,
Some loved and some endured.
My catalogue is complete,
Though my passion was raging,
With each doctrinal changing
I just shifted my tired seat!
I just shifted my tired seat!

Are you in a sentimental mood?
I'll sigh with you,
Oh, sorrow, sorrow!
On priestess' coldness do you brood?
I'll do so, too —
Oh, sorrow, sorrow!
I'll charm your willing ears
With blogs of Anglican fears,
While sympathetic tears
My cheeks bedew —
Oh, sorrow, sorrow!

But if evangelistic sentiment is wanted,
I've  hymns and prayer books true and tried;
For where'er our pewsitters' rear may be planted,
The false teachers are defied!
Then new pewsters, in serried ranks assembled,
Will ever share the Gospel News
And I shouldn't be surprised if 815 trembled
Watching the mighty troops leaving the pews.

We shouldn't be surprised if 815 trembled
Trembled with alarm
Watching the mighty troops leaving the pews.

And if you call for the Holy See,
We'll heave the thurible round,
With a yeo heave ho, for the incense is free,
Her chain's a-trip and her censer's a-fire,
Hurrah for the Tiber bound!

Yeo-ho — heave ho —
Hurrah for the Tiber bound!

To sit quietly as the revisionist priest
Tickles the congo's taste,
But the happiest hour a pewster sees
Is when he's found
Amongst a faithful crowd,
With his Bible in his hands, yeo ho!
And his knees firmly on the ground!

Then man the pews — off we go,
As the thurifer swings us round,
With a yeo heave ho,
And a boat boy below,
Hurrah for the Tiber bound!
With a yeo heave ho,
And a boat boy below,
Hurrah for the Tiber bound!

Yeo-ho, heave ho,
Yeo-ho, heave ho,
Heave ho, heave ho, yeo-ho!

A wandering pewster I —
A thing of lowly aspirations,
For hymns, anthems, and sermons,
Some loved and some endured.

Some loved and some endured
A teary eyed goodbye,
Goodbye! Goodby!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

The High Court 2000 Years Ago and the High Court Today

This Sunday's Gospel reading is Luke 13:31-35 in which Jesus gives his followers a foretaste of his fate in the city of the highest court of the day,

"At that very hour some Pharisees came and said to him, ‘Get away from here, for Herod wants to kill you.’ He said to them, ‘Go and tell that fox for me, “Listen, I am casting out demons and performing cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day I finish my work. Yet today, tomorrow, and the next day I must be on my way, because it is impossible for a prophet to be killed away from Jerusalem.” Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! See, your house is left to you. And I tell you, you will not see me until the time comes when you say, “Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.” ’
Why Jerusalem? Matthew Henry  (1662-1714) was one of many who offered the following explanation,
"Now none undertook to try prophets, and to judge concerning them, but the great sanhedrin, which always sat at Jerusalem; it was a cause which the inferior courts did not take cognizance of, and therefore, if a prophet be put to death, it must be at Jerusalem." (Matthew Henry's Commentary on the whole Bible)
As Lent progresses and as I prepare to remember the events surrounding Jesus' crucifixion, I am drawn to the thoughts and motives of those who accused, judged, and executed our Lord. Time and time again I find that if I were somehow to be transported back into that time that I would probably find myself in the position of accuser, judge, or executioner. Such is our nature that we reject God, not always intentionally, but out of blindness. If there were any other reason to believe that we needed a Savior who might restore our sight, this would be it: there is no doubt that we would be every bit as blind as the members of the Sanhedrin.

Today's U.S. Supreme Court has often been the subject of controversy particularly when it comes to the subject of life or death decisions (i.e. Roe v. Wade). I complain about individual justices when decisions do not go my way. Perhaps if people would remember the judgment of the Sanhedrin, then they would understand that the members of the U.S. Supreme Court are just as capable of making a terrible mistake.

Because of our fallibility, we must pray that the Lord helps guide the United States as our system works through the process of selecting a new member for out highest court.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Enneagram as a Lenten Exercise?

The Episcopal Diocese of Upper South Carolina Newsletter recently arrived, and it contained the following announcement, 

Co-ed Lenten Retreat to study the Enneagram at St. Martin's, Columbia   
...The retreat will use Richard Rohr's DVD that examines each aspect of the Enneagram, an ancient spiritual device that allows you to learn more about yourself and others based on specific personality tendencies and characteristics. Sessions will be held from 6 to 9 pm Friday; 9:30 am to 4 pm Saturday; and an optional session from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. Sunday. Dinner will be provided Friday night and a Dutch treat lunch on Saturday (or you may bring your own). 

I headed over to the church's web pages to find out more.

One idea underlying the Enneagram is that people have two important aspects - essence and personality. Each person has a unique "essential self" that can't be reduced to a category or a number. However, the Enneagram describes nine patterns or themes by which people form a personality, and a social persona, to meet the challenges of love and work. Ideally, personality is an effective way to express ourselves in the world. But problems arise when personality covers up the inner self, or our point of view becomes stuck and rigid. 
Please join *** and *** as they show Richard Rohr's DVD. "The Discernment of Spirits," and help you discover your essence, your best self." *** and *** are strong advocates of the Enneagram and can attest to its profound effect on their own spiritual development, especially in forgiving others. 
That just doesn't sound like a Lenten exercise to me. "Ideally personality is an effective way to express ourselves in the world"? Is that a Christian ideal? Whatever happened to putting on the armor of light and testifying to the transforming power of Jesus?  And what about "The Discernment of Spirits"? That sounds a bit occultist to me.

I can guess that this activity is being offered with the approval of the rectoress and staff. After checking out their training, I can see why this is happening.

I posted something about this sort of thing back in 2012 when the EDUSC newsletter promoted a similar activity at Kanuga.  I will reprint a few of my comments here,

A little research into the subject of enneagrams left my head spinning,  


 It is understandable that Episcopal priests who, in their pastoral roles engage in a lot of counseling of troubled souls, might find themselves looking for help from whatever is popular in the  psychology circles of the day.  
But is that where we should be looking for answers?  
I have, from my mother's collection, an autographed copy "Beyond Anxiety" a 1953 book written by the late Bishop James Pike. It is strong on 50's pop-psychology, and in it I can see hints of the desire to escape from "repression" imposed on us from external forces. This was a harbinger of what was to be the push for freedom from "inhibitions," the sexual liberation movement of the 60's, and the ultimate journey of Bishop Pike into divorce, remarriage, a call for a heresy trial, censure, madness, and death in the desert of the Holy Land. 

Poor Bishop Pike, he should have been committed before hurting himself.

Something about Episcopalians makes them susceptible to being attracted to these kinds of pop-psychology scams. I believe it has to do with our general lack of Biblical grounding and its resultant weakness of faith in Jesus as the rock of our salvation.

My advice for "committed" pewsitters in Upper South Carolina is to get in touch with your enneagrams, embrace your deficient emptiness, and settle into the plutonic paradox of living in a church that seeks refuge in anything and everything that the Church historically has advised us to avoid.

My advice for those who are not so committed is to run for your lives and have a holy Lent somewhere else.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Lent 1: The Temptations

The Gospel reading for Lent 1 is Luke 4:1-13 and presents the story of the temptation of Jesus by Satan,
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing at all during those days, and when they were over, he was famished. The devil said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become a loaf of bread.’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is written, “One does not live by bread alone.” ’
Then the devil led him up and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And the devil said to him, ‘To you I will give their glory and all this authority; for it has been given over to me, and I give it to anyone I please. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is written,
“Worship the Lord your God,
   and serve only him.” ’
Then the devil took him to Jerusalem, and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written,
“He will command his angels concerning you,
   to protect you”,
“On their hands they will bear you up,
   so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.” ’
Jesus answered him, ‘It is said, “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.” ’ When the devil had finished every test, he departed from him until an opportune time. 
It is no coincidence that this lesson is taught on the first Sunday in Lent, but it is a coincidence that it occurs on Valentine's Day. I wonder how many preachers mixed a little Valentine's day message into their sermons today?

St. Leo (Pope between 440 and 461) sure wouldn't even though Valentine, who died February 14, 269, preceded Leo so Leo knew of him.

Here is St. Leo's "First Sermon on Lent". H/t Prydain
We have come, dearly beloved, to the beginning of Lent, that is, to the more earnest service of our Lord ; and as we are entering on a kind of contest of holy exertion, let us prepare our souls for strife with temptation, and understand that exactly in proportion to our greater heartiness in pursuing our salvation will be the vehemence of our enemies’ assault. But stronger is He that is in us than he that is against us, and we have force through Him in whose power we confide; for it was to this end that our Lord allowed Himself to be tempted by the Tempter, that, as we are guarded by His aid, we should be instructed by His example. For He conquered the adversary by authorities from the Law, not by the exertion of superior might; that by this means He might at once put a higher honour on man, and inflict a heavier punishment on the adversary, in that the foe of mankind was conquered not as it were by God, but by man. He therefore fought then, that we too might fight afterwards; He conquered, that we too might conquer likewise. For there are no works of virtue without the trials of temptation, no faith without probation, no conflict without a foe, no victory without an engagement. This life of ours lies in the midst of snares, in the midst of battles. If we do not mean to be deceived, we must keep watch; if we do mean to conquer, we must fight.
I had the pleasure of being invited to attend a service at a small Anglican parish this Sunday, and I was pleased to hear a nice exposition of today's Gospel and Epistle with emphasis on their parallel verses from Deuteronomy that was very enlightening.

The fight goes on!  

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Quoth the Gryphon: The Reason They're Called Lessons

While I was attending the Mere Anglicanism conference 2016 in Charleston, SC, I found myself needing a hat in order to walk about that holy city during a bright sunny lunch break. I wandered over to the area of the conference hall where books and other materials were being sold and found this,

The creature depicted looked familiar. I looked at the label and learned that it represented the Gryphon.

In 4th or 5th grade, our class staged a puppet show for the rest of the school based on Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland", and I was assigned the job of creating a paper mache puppet for my role as, you guessed it, the Gryphon. My fabrication turned out to be a green head with a crooked beak and green paper wings. I didn't get many lines to read as my job was mostly to dance with the Mock Turtle in the "Lobster Quadrille" but I do remember getting to say,
`Stand up and repeat “‘TIS THE VOICE OF THE SLUGGARD,”‘ 
I must confess, I loved that part.

You may recall that "Alice" is one of my least favorite stories (see "Who Else Hates Alice in Wonderland, and Who Hates it When Alice Shows Up in a Sermon? in which I wrote,
Yes dear readers, I, the person who would not harm a spider, the person without malice, the person who loves everyone and everything on God's green Earth, HATED Alice.
It may have been the crazed Queen of Hearts screaming "Off with her head!" that frightened me as a child. Or maybe it was the other characters who were ready to follow her commands. Or perhaps it was the Hookah-Smoking Caterpillar that created in me a distrust of people using inhaled intoxicants, or maybe it was nightmares of waking up to see our pet kitty turning into a Cheshire Cat, sitting on the chest of drawers, staring at me, grinning, and breathing that awful cat food breath that affected me so deeply. 
Or maybe it was the wedge that broke up an early romance. 
No, it was none of that. 
It was the utterly pointless, unending insanity accepted as normality that I despised.
I have grown more tolerant of short doses of insanity except for sermons that ramble on and on about anything and everything except the Gospel.

As the Gryphon, I had three more lines which may give you a better idea of the Gryphon's personality,
"...the Gryphon never learnt it (fainting in coils)."
"Hadn't time," said the Gryphon: "I went to the Classical master, though. He was an old crab, he was."
"I never went to him," the Mock Turtle said with a sigh: "he taught Laughing and Grief, they used to say."
"So he did, so he did," said the Gryphon, sighing in his turn, and both creatures hid their faces in their paws.
"And how many hours a day did you do lessons?" said Alice, in a hurry to change the subject.
"Ten hours the first day," said the Mock Turtle: "nine the next, and so on."
"What a curious plan!" exclaimed Alice.
"That's the reason they're called lessons," the Gryphon remarked: "because they lessen from day to day"
Reading the card attached to the Gryphon hat on the sales table at Mere Anglicanism 2016, I felt that one of us had gotten something terribly wrong. Curiously, it read,
The Gryphon was a mythical creature with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle. Its attributes were courage, intelligence, strength, valor, and eternal vigilance, and its purpose was to find and guard gold and hidden treasures that wer legendary and incalculably precious. It was said to guard knowledge, the road to salvation, the Tree of Life, and the faitful. The Gryphon represents Mere Anglicanism's desire to guard the incalculable treasure that is the Christian Gospel (2 Timothy 1:14) and the treasure that is the Anglican expression of it.
I don't buy it. I know the Gryphon to be a green winged punster, and wise guy.

But I did buy the hat.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

"Listen to Him"

This Sunday's Gospel reading from Luke 9:28-36,(37-43a) contains the story of the Transfiguration of Jesus and in this we hear a voice from the clouds,
Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah’—not knowing what he said. While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!’ When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.
The voice of God coming from a cloud is also found in Mark and Matthew,
Mark 9:7 And a cloud overshadowed them, and a voice came out of the cloud, “This is my beloved Son; listen to him.”
Matthew 17:5 He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.”
The voice parallels what the voice heard at the time of Jesus' baptism (which is another event repeated in all of the synoptic Gospels),
Mark 1:11  And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
Matthew 3:17 and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
Luke 3:22  and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form, like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
The Gospel of John does not include these, but instead recalls a voice from heaven near the end of Jesus' life,
John 12:27-28 “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.”
How many times do we pray to hear God's voice?

Why do we feel disappointed when we do not get an answer when the answer is staring us in the face?
"Listen to Him"
And how can we listen to him?

By opening up those dusty Bibles and reading what he has to say!

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Property Battle in the Diocese of Haiti Strains Relationships Between the Diocese of Upper South Carolina and Bishop of Haiti

Curious events have been occurring in Haiti centering around the community of Cange. Since 1979, the Diocese of Upper South Carolina has been very supportive of missionary work there, and has provided much-needed engineering and medical assistance largely through the efforts of the parishioners of Christ Church Greenville (see their web pages).

Episcopal priest Père Lafontant, who for many years was the spiritual leader at Cange and who along with his daughter visited our parish in Upper South Carolina in the past, retired four years ago and things apparently have not been the same there since.

Bishop Waldo has only provided cryptic and carefully guarded remarks about the problems in Cange, but he opens his "Pastoral Letter" on the subject by saying,
"the World Missions Committee, with my support, has temporarily suspended all aid and all trips to Haiti." 
We all know that Haiti is one of the poorest nations in our hemisphere, so what could be so bad that a a Church would cut them off?

As Bishop Waldo explains, it sounds like a church property dispute, and that is something that people in the Episcopal church should be familiar with.

"Over the course of the fall of 2015, the Diocese of Haiti has made it clear that they intend to manage all of the buildings on land purchased in their name by Père Lafontant in the early years of our shared ministry. These buildings include:
École Bon Sauveur and Église Bon Sauveur.
The Zanmi Lasante (Partners in Health’s Haitian sister organization) administrative compound, Artisan Center, Friendship House, hospital, and TB/HIV sanatorium.
Further complicating matters is the fact that many of Zanmi Lasante’s buildings are constructed on this property belonging to the Diocese of Haiti.  For years we have hoped to have a signed MOU (memorandum of understanding) between Zanmi Lasante and the Diocese of Haiti, for the use of the property. The World Missions Committee and I know that having the MOU is imperative both for security reasons and for us to be able to continue our work without choosing sides in this transitional struggle. We have attempted to promote the process of getting an MOU without success. "
Security for aid workers is also an issue in Haiti as evidenced by an attack on a Zanmi Lasante bus in October 2015.
"On Monday morning, a bus carrying 32 employees (doctors, nurses and technicians) of the humanitarian organization 'Zanmi Lasante' was attacked in Arcahaie by 4 heavily armed individuals, who have not hesitated to fire on the vehicle before set fire to it, according to the testimony of passengers. Fortunately no victim is to deplored, except employees strongly traumatized by this savage aggression." (Haiti Libre)
We are left to speculate as to the reasons why the Diocese of Haiti and the Diocese of South Carolina cannot agree on this matter, but this is not the only disagreement that exists between our two bishops.

Hint: Same-sex marriage.

Bishop Waldo of Upper South Carolina is totally in favor of "marriage equality" and is allowing the blessings of same-sex marriages in his diocese.

Bishop Duracin of Haiti was a signatory to the minority report on marriage equality at the last General Convention of the Episcopal church which read,
The nature, purpose, and meaning of marriage, as traditionally understood by Christians, are summed up in the words of the Book of Common Prayer:“The bond and covenant of marriage was established by God in creation, and our Lord Jesus Christ adorned this manner of life by his presence and first miracle at a wedding in Cana of Galilee. It signifies to us the mystery of the union between Christ and his Church, and Holy Scripture commends it to be honored by all people.The union of husband and wife in heart, body, and mind is intended by God for their mutual joy; for the help and comfort given one another in prosperity and adversity; and, when it is God’s will, for the procreation of children and their nurture in the knowledge and love of the Lord” (BCP, p. 423)The nature, purpose, and meaning of marriage are linked to the relationship of man and woman. The promises and vows of marriage presuppose husband and wife as the partners who are made one flesh in marriage. This understanding is a reasonable one, as well as in accord with Holy Scripture and Christian tradition in their teaching about marriage.When we were ordained as bishops in the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church, we vowed to “guard the faith, unity, and discipline of the Church of God” (BCP, p. 518). We renew that promise; and in light of the actions of General Convention, and of our own deep pastoral and theological convictions, we pledge ourselves to “Maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:3). The bonds created in baptism are indissoluble, and we share one bread and one cup in the Eucharist. We are committed to the Church and its people, even in the midst of painful disagreement.“Speak the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15). When we disagree with the Church’s actions, we will do so openly and transparently and – with the Spirit’s help – charitably. We are grateful that Resolution A054 includes provision for bishops and priests to exercise their conscience; but we realize at the same time that we have entered a season in which the tensions over these difficult matters may grow. We pray for the grace to be clear about our convictions and, at the same time, to love brothers and sisters with whom we disagree.“Welcome one another . . . just as Christ has welcomed [us]” (Rom. 15:7). Our commitment to the Church includes a commitment to our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters. We will walk with them, pray with and for them, and seek ways to engage in pastoral conversation. We rejoice that Jesus’ embrace includes all of us.We are mindful that the decisions of the 78th General Convention do not take place in isolation. The Episcopal Church is part of a larger whole, the Anglican Communion. We remain committed to that Communion and to the historic See of Canterbury, and we will continue to honor the three moratoria requested in the Windsor Report and affirmed by the Instruments of Communion.We invite bishops and any Episcopalians who share these commitments to join us in this statement, and to affirm with us our love for our Lord Jesus Christ, our commitment to The Episcopal Church, and the Anglican Communion, and our dissent from these actions.Communion Partner signatories:The Rt. Rev’d John C. Bauerschmidt, Bishop of TennesseeThe Rt. Rev’d Gregory O. Brewer, Bishop of Central FloridaThe Rt. Rev’d Daniel W. Herzog, Bishop of Albany, resignedThe Rt. Rev’d Paul E. Lambert, Bishop Pro Tem of DallasThe Rt. Rev’d Edward S. Little II, Bishop of Northern IndianaThe Rt. Rev’d William H. Love, Bishop of AlbanyThe Rt. Rev. Bruce MacPherson, Bishop of Western Louisiana, resignedThe Rt. Rev’d Daniel H. Martins, Bishop of SpringfieldThe Rt. Rev’d Edward L. Salmon, Bishop of South Carolina, resignedThe Rt. Rev’d William J. Skilton, Assistant Bishop of Dominican Republic, resignedThe Rt. Rev’d Michael G. Smith, Bishop of North DakotaThe Rt. Rev’d Don A. Wimberly, Bishop of Texas, resignedOther signatories:The Rt. Rev. Lloyd Allen, Bishop of HondurasThe Rt. Rev. Jean Zache Duracin, Bishop of HaitiThe Rt. Rev. Francisco José Duque Gómez, Bishop of ColombiaThe Rt. Rev. Orlando Guerrero, VenezuelaThe Rt. Rev. E. Ambrose Gumbs, Bishop of Virgin IslandsThe Rt. Rev. Samuel Johnson Howard, Bishop of FloridaThe Rt. Rev. Julio Holguin, Bishop of Dominican RepublicThe Rt. Rev. Alfredo Morante, Bishop of Ecuador Litoral
After General Convention 2015, there was speculation as to what effect the Episcopal church's actions might have on its missionary efforts in other countries. The party line in TEc circles was that the same-sex marriage issue would not have any impact on mission and outreach. In fact, Bishop Waldo recently said exactly that as I posted here a few weeks ago,
 "In fact, the vast majority of connections remain intact between the Episcopal Church and many of the provinces, dioceses and congregations who dissent from the General Convention 2015's decisions on marriage-through mission partnerships, companion diocese relationships, friendships and, especially, shared faith in the Lordship of Jesus Christ."
Are we beginning to see some cracks in that argument?

Without a face to face interview with Bishop Duracin of Haiti, I cannot be sure.