This was the scene last Saturday in Minnesota as the masked Bishop Craig Loya posed at "The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage" of the rector of tiny Saint Edward the Confessor Episcopal Church in Wayzata, MN (ASA 34 in 2019) to his same sex partner (Groom 1 and Groom 2 written on their masks in the picture) .
This was a full marriage ceremony as you can tell by reading the service program here with an exchange of vows, blessing of rings, and communion of the unbaptized. I am not sure if this was an authorized marriage liturgy, but I am certain that St. Paul would be rending his garments and firing off a nasty letter to the church in Wayzata for using his letter to the Colossians 3:12-17 as the reading from the Epistles.
As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion,
kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone
has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven
you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds
everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your
hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. Let the
word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom;
and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to
God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord
Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
The Apostle's words are theologically misappropriated and made to sound as if he were blessing this faux marriage.
The Bishop's presence is an indication of how far the Diocese of Minnesota has sunk.
It is unclear as to what role the Bishop played during the ceremony, but we know that he gave the following blessing,
The Blessing of the Marriage
The people remain standing. The couple stand, and the Bishop says the following prayer
Most gracious God, we give you thanks for your tender love in sending Jesus Christ
to come among us, to be born of a human mother, and to make the way of the cross
to be the way of life. We thank you, also, for consecrating the union of two people
in his Name. By the power of your Holy Spirit, pour out the abundance of your
blessing upon Lance and Jason Defend them from every enemy. Lead them into all
peace. Let their love for each other be a seal upon their hearts, a mantle about their
shoulders, and a crown upon their foreheads. Bless them in their work and in their
companionship; in their sleeping and in their waking; in their joys and in their
sorrows; in their life and in their death. Finally, in your mercy, bring them to that
table where your saints feast for ever in your heavenly home; through Jesus Christ
our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and
The fact that the picture of him with the happy couple disappeared from the broader social audience soon after it had gone public suggests that he still has a tiny amount of shame somewhere underneath his rich vestments and pointy hat.
Or maybe he was just ashamed that he was not following the CDC's advice that he did not need to wear a mask since he has been vaccinated and was outdoors.
That's probably it.