Thursday, December 28, 2006

No Safe Place: The Mafia Episcopal Church Welcomes You!

My kind readers know I don’t have especially high expectations of the Episcopal Church. But this letter from the TEC Diocese of Georgia, to Christ Church Savannah floored me. I don’t know what the exact legal definition of such things are, but it’s extortion pure and simple. Christopher Johnson says more about that.

This letter along with other actions of Episcolib bishops and chancellors also reveals an obsession with money and with stripping departing orthodox priests of all holy orders. That I can’t understand. If a priest is leaving for another jurisdiction, why the need to strip him of all orders? Vindictiveness?

As for money, some bishops might as well say, “Screw the Holy Listening! Just show me the money!”

Now I could vent on the Bishop of Georgia – and he would deserve it and more. But Craig Goodrich is on to something deeper:

OK, this clinches it. Neither +Lee nor +Loutit [the Bishop of Georgia] have been aggressive with their orthodox parishes in the past, and for those who know them it seems wildly out of character — since they are both apparently by nature fence-sitters who would prefer the whole controversy to just go away.

But now we find them suddenly sending these unGodly (literally) threatening letters in tones so nasty and imperious that they shock even most liberally-leaning Episcopalians (with the exception, of course, of the few who are completely off the deep end). Why?

Do we know of any diocese that has recently been managed with such obliviously tactless, heavy-handed techniques? Where any suggestion of disagreement with the Bishop would cost you your job? Where well-loved and long-serving priests were hounded out of the diocese (and in one case, even resigned his orders)?

Virginia, Georgia — welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas!

In other words, the bishop acting as Mafioso was Kate Schori’s M.O. as bishop of Nevada. And now that she’s the Presiding Bishop, it has already become the M.O. of 815, of the national Episcopal Church.

As incredible as the letter from the Diocese of Georgia is, it’s not exceptional in the Episcopal Church.

It’s policy.

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