TH E E P I S C O PA L C H U R C H I N TH E SA N F R A N C I S C O BAY A R EA
Responses to the Proposed Anglican Covenant
SUMMER 2011 VOL. 148 NO. 2
Bishop Gene Robinson will make this a Pride to remember! The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson, Ninth Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire, will join us to help San Francisco celebrate Pride 2011 this June. Won’t you join him in making this a Pride to remember? Bishop Robinson will be with us to: • Be the guest of honor at an Oasis California fundraiser on the evening of Friday, June 24; • Preach at the Pride Eucharist on Sunday, June 26; and • Lead us as we represent the Diocese of California by marching in the 2011 San Francisco Pride Parade.
Here’s how you can join Bishop Gene & celebrate Pride 2010: • Honor Bishop Gene on Friday, June 24 by joining a reception from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Designed to help cover the cost of Oasis California’s 2011 Pride program, this fete will be hosted by Don and Carol Anne Brown in their Berkeley home. Reserve your place today online at www.oasisca.org. • Hear Bishop Gene preach during the 2011 Pride Eucharist. This open air worship service is held where we gather to march in the Pride parade. The Rt. Rev. Mark W Holmerud, Bishop of the Sierra Pacific Synod, ELCA, is expected to preside at the worship service offered by Oasis California and Lutherans Concerned / San Francisco Bay Area. To learn where and when we will worship, check online at www.oasisca.org. • Join us as in the parade as we walk together to reflect the diversity of the Episcopal Diocese of California. You can sign up to walk with us or register who will represent your parish online at www.oasisca.org.
More info: www.oasisca.org.
Table of Contents
Sat, Jun 4 — Ordination, Grace Cathedral, San Francisco Sun, Jun 5 — 50+ Wedding Anniversary Celebration, Grace Cathedral, San Francisco
Fri, Jun 10 & Sat, Jun 11 — Asian Commission Consultation, Christ Church, Alameda
Fri, Jun 10 — SummerTini 2011: annual benefit for Episcopal Community Services, The Galleria at the San Francisco Design Center
Sun, Jun 12 — Pentecost: Bishop at Grace Cathedral Sat. Jun 18 — General Confirmation, San Francisco
Sat, Jun 25 — Worship in the Wilderness, Point Pinole
Thu, Jun 30 — Evensong and Reception for the Rev. Margaret Deeths, Grace Cathedral Sat, Jul 9 to Sat, Jul 16 — Eco-Pilgrimage: The Bishop’s Ranch to St. Dorothy’s Rest
Sun, Jul 17 — AIDS Walk San Francisco, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco Sat, Jul 23 — Worship in the Wilderness, Tilden Regional Park Sat, Jul 30 — The Bishop’s Ranch Legacy Circle Inauguration, Bishop’s Ranch
Wed, Sep 14 to Tue, Sep 20 — House of Bishops, Quito, Ecuador
Tue, Sep 20 to Thu, Sep 22 — Clergy Conference, Bishop’s Ranch Sat, Sep 24 — Celebration of New Ministry: the Rev. Michael W. Woodward, Transfiguration, San Mateo Cover design and illustration: Francesca Pera
Editorial 4 I am an Episcopalian
Around the Diocese 5 – 7 Christ Church, Alameda: a Seafarer Friendly Church; I-80 Area Ministry begins bilingual anti-racism training; Stations of the Cross at Oakland’s Lake Merritt; Sam Dessórdi Peres Leite recipient of ECF fellowship grant
News Feature 8 & 9 DioCal Deputation summarizes covenant conversation
Feature 10 & 11 A bishop’s thoughts on the Anglican Covenant
Covenant Resources 12 DioCal Spotlight 14 & 15 Episcopalians join others to remember Archbishop Oscar Romero
InFormation 16 Who do we say that we are?
The Space Between 17 The sacred elements: an alternative perspective
A Wounded Earth & A Crucified Christ 18 Photos from the interactive service at Grace Cathedral on Good Friday / International Earth Day, April 22
News in Photos 19
J U N – AU G 2011 VO L . 148 N O. 2 Pacific Church News is published by the Diocese of California, The Episcopal Church. POSTMASTER: Send change of address to 1055 Taylor St., San Francisco, CA 94108. The Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus, publisher; Canon Sean T. McConnell, editor; Ms. Francesca Pera, managing editor. The Diocese of California seeks to enter a new era of the Church’s life emphasizing diversity, embeddedness, and collaboration. We believe The Episcopal Church has a charism, a gift, to be a generous form of Christianity. The Diocese of California has embraced the vision put forth a hundred years ago by the Fellowship of Reconciliation, later espoused by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., that we should manifest “the beloved community” — the living out of our essential interrelatedness in Christ. If you would like to submit an article to Pacific Church News, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
SEAN T. Mc CONNELL
I am an Episcopalian
ith this issue of PCN, we are doing something that we try never to do, that is devoting an issue to a topic not easily accessible to a newcomer to our church. Most people have never heard of the proposed Anglican Covenant, and they really have bigger things to worry about anyway. But this is a defining moment for The Episcopal Church and our Anglican Communion partners, and the Diocese of California recognizes the importance of participating with the greater church in this period of discernment. Both Bishop Marc and the DioCal deputation (your key representatives in the governance of the greater church) prayerfully addressed this issue and have engaged others around the diocese to discern how to respond. Because of their work, we are allowing them to take center stage as we feature their words on the subject. That said, here is my $0.02, and please pardon me if this drifts into “inside baseball.” Before Bishop Swing announced his retirement as Bishop of California, I kept a little blog called “Anglican Postmortem.” My critique at that time was of the ascendency of the Anglican Communion as a pseudo-legislative body, and my advocacy was for the unique status given The Episcopal Church in our disestablishment at the end of the 18th century. While the bonds of affection were there near the beginning when the Archbishop of Canterbury consecrated our second and third bishops, the distinction between the Church of England as an established church and the church in the newly-formed United States as one born out of the same milieu as the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment of the Constitution was clear from our beginning. Now, I know that there is some Episcopal Church history with that very long word, antidisestablishmentarianism, but that –ism is, from the beginning, a minority opinion within the context of the Protestant Episcopal Church U.S.A. (PECUSA — a distinction we no longer use because our church spreads beyond the borders of one country, among other reasons). Suffice it to say, we declared our independence from the beginning. We were not a new province (the province system was a way to organize the continuing colonial churches in the 19th century), but a fledgling church in a “New World.” The first Lambeth Conference was held in 1867, and from the beginning this was a gathering in counsel. The Lambeth Conference was never expected to legislate or govern. In fact, Resolution 24 from the 1968 Lambeth Conference resolved that “no major issue in the life of the Church should be decided without the full participation of the laity in discussion and in decision.” Within the context of the PECUSA, bishops alone could not make decisions for the church without acting in concert with the House
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
of Deputies (elected representatives from the dioceses made up of clergy and laity). This has been our polity since our church’s first constitution was adopted in 1789 and this structure remains. Some might say that the Chicago-Lambeth Quadilateral of 1886 (The Book of Common Prayer, p. 876) was an attempt by the bishops to make an end-run around the House of Deputies, but that discussion is worth a book in itself. A brief excursion must be taken at this point. One problem that I frequently pointed to in my blog was the changing role of the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church. In the earliest days, the Presiding Bishop was merely the senior presiding officer and he (there were no women bishops until 1989 — see below) maintained his diocesan role. Elections for the office began in 1919, and since 1940 the Presiding Bishop has been required to resign all other jurisdictions. Thus began the ascendency of the office of the Presiding Bishop. In other provinces even an archbishop maintains diocesan functions, which keeps them more closely grounded to the foundational levels of the church. The first Anglican Communion Primates’ Meeting was held in 1979, and the Presiding Bishop took on the title “Primate of The Episcopal Church” in 1982. If the axiom, “Lex orandi lex credendi (The law we pray is the law we believe)” is true, the same can be said for titles granted — that eventually, the office will become defined by the title. However, unlike some of the radically conservative bloggers, I continued on page 13
Around the Diocese
Christ Church, Alameda: a Seafarer Friendly Church
t is my pleasure and honor to acknowledge Christ Church, Alameda, as a Seafarer Friendly Church,” stated the Rev. David Rider, president and executive director of the Seamen’s Church Institute (SCI) (an Episcopal ministry in American seaports) as he presented a certificate to the Rev. Kathy Crary, Christ Church’s rector, on March 27. Fr. Rider commended Christ Church’s efforts for this ministry by adopting sea-going vessels; contributing
funds and in-kind donations for the Christmas-at-Sea program; and the December 2010 fundraiser gathering. The Seamen’s Church Institute cares for the personal, professional, and spiritual needs of mariners around the world. Founded in 1834, SCI is the largest, most comprehensive mariners’ service agency in North America. SCI’s International Maritime Center (IMC) is located near the docks of Oakland’s busy shipping port. When tanker and container shipping vessels dock, the center provides worship, counseling, computer access, telephone access, postal services, transportation to stores, and recreation for seafarers. Two members of the Christ Church community were thanked for their continuing support of SCI. Sam Sause has served on the board of directors for the SCI/Oakland facility and Adrienne Yee serves as SCI’s development coordinator at the IMC. Christ Church returned the recognition and presented a certificate and a “ditty bag” to Fr. Rider commemorating the 30th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. He then led a discussion and forum on the issue of piracy, especially along the coast of East Africa. Outlining the difficult lives of mariners, he added SCI is working on
the first-ever study of the impact of piracy on seafarers, whether or not they are captured. “Seafarers are away from home, family, and loved ones for eight to ten months at a time. The nature of the work and the contract cycle means many miss the births of children and grandchildren and are
away when families deal with illness or death. The fear is great when you hear you are taking a voyage that includes the shipping lanes within 1,000 miles of the coast of Somalia,” Fr. Rider explained. “The absence often costs these men and women their marriages and ties with families that cannot bear the strain of having a loved one away most of the year.” Information on joining the ranks of Seafarer Friendly Churches and how to donate to this ministry are found on the SCI website at seamenschurch.org.
— the Rev. Kathy Crary
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
Around the Diocese I-80 Area Ministry begins bilingual anti-racism training
uring the season of Lent the I-80 Area Ministry group offered the first bilingual anti-racism training to Spanish and English speakers in the Diocese of California. Utilizing the new “Life Cycles Healing Racism” curriculum, a group of clergy and laity came together to plan the sessions. Wishing to keep the program entirely bilingual, the curriculum had to be shortened somewhat to allow for full translation. As with any bilingual program, the road to keeping this commitment was not easy. The materials had not previously been translated into Spanish, so the Rev. John Rawlinson of St. James/Santiago, Oakland, agreed to translate the materials. In addition, Rawlinson offered to travel to Holy Trinity/ La Santisima Trinidad, Richmond,
for five Sunday afternoons to act as translator during the sessions. The leaders for the program were the Rev. Javier Torres and the Rev. Susan Champion. Participants were a diverse group, including many Latinos and some Anglo- and African-American congregants. Many came from Holy Trinity/La Santisima Trinidad, but other I-80 Area Ministry churches were represented as well. Facilitators and participants learned many important lessons. The fact that it requires patience to hold a bilingual event where everyone’s voice can be heard was one lesson learned. Another is that our backgrounds and experiences impact our attitudes towards other races and cultures. We also learned that the experience of working together in a bilingual setting is as important as the content of the classes. And, most important, everyone enjoyed being together and learned how much Episcopalians and children of God share in common. The class ended with a delicious multicultural potluck meal. As one participant, Yadira Hernandez, said, “We need to get together again, not for a class, but just because we enjoy being with one another.” — the Rev. Susan Champion
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
Stations of the Cross at Oakland’s Lake Merritt on
his year, Good Friday and International Earth Day fell on the same day. To honor the occasion, 23 people showed up in the heart of Oakland to walk the Stations of the Cross around Lake Merritt. The group was guided by a homemade, fivefoot wooden cross, and the Good Friday and Earth Day Stations of the Cross tied together themes of environmental and social justice along with the final moments of Christ’s earthy pilgrimage before his crucifixion. Throughout the lakeside walk, people were invited to write their prayer concerns on white strips of cloth to pin to the cross. It was a beautiful sight to watch as the wind and Spirit carried the prayers. This event was sponsored by Worship in the Wilderness, which meets the fourth Saturday of every month at 10 a.m. For photos and more information visit www.witw. info. — Justin R. Cannon
Around the Diocese Good Friday and International Earth Day
The Rev. Sam Dessórdi Peres Leite recipient of ECF fellowship grant
he Episcopal Church Foundation (ECF) announced the 2011 recipients of its Fellowship Partners Program grants on June 2. The Rev. Sam Dessórdi Peres Leite is one of four new fellows. For nearly 50 years ECF’s Fellowship Partners Program has identified and helped to raise up dynamic and transformational lay and ordained church leaders by providing financial support to individuals engaged in academic study and transformational ministries that address important areas of need in The Episcopal Church. ECF Fellows have emerged as important leaders, teachers, and scholars at all levels of the church.
The Rev. Sam Dessórdi Peres Leite is a priest from the Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil and is working on his doctoral degree at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific. His focus is on issues in Latino Ministries. His current research is designed to identify ways to empower Latino Ministries that will help the church engage in a true dialogue with the Latin American population. Sam has been very active on the provincial level with the church in Brazil, particularly in christian formation, youth ministry, and liturgy. He is the custodian of the Brazilian Book of Common Prayer and is Assistant Dean of Holy Trinity National Cathedral, Porto Alegre. Sam also served as Chairman of the National Worship Committee of the 9th Assembly of the World Council of Churches in 2005–2006. Currently Sam is a volunteer consultant for the Diocese of California Latino Ministry Committee and is participating in the Latino Strategic Vision for the diocese.
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
Feature News DioCal Deputation summarizes covenant conversation
he General Convention Deputation of the Diocese of California has prepared a summary of conversations on the proposed Anglican Covenant that were conducted throughout the diocese during the month of March. The summary (below) was prepared as a letter addressed to The Episcopal Church’s Presiding Bishop the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, the President of the House of Deputies Bonnie Anderson, and the D020 Task Force. Resolution D020 was passed at the 76th General Convention held in Anaheim, Calif. in 2009, and called for dioceses to study all drafts of the proposed Anglican Covenant and report back to Executive Council. The D020 Task
Force was established by Executive Council to collect information from the dioceses and to prepare a report for the 77th General Convention to be held in Indianapolis in 2012. The California deputation concluded from conversations that included more than 200 lay and clergy members of the diocese that the proposed covenant “would alter Anglicanism at [its] basic level, and not for the better.” The deputation also held up the “Indaba process,” a Zulu word that refers to conferences where all participants have an equal voice. This process was introduced at the Lambeth Conference of 2008 as a way to bring bishops from around the communion together in small groups to discuss matters of importance in their own context. The
California deputation’s summary stated that the Indaba example and other expressions of mutuality “are far more life-giving in the Gospel and Spirit-filled than pursuing the formal structures offered by the proposed Anglican Covenant.” On behalf of the deputation, the Rev. Richard Helmer said, “We would like to thank everyone in the diocese who participated in this process. The thoughtful conversations were fed by much prayer and study by the participants.” The D020 Task Force continues to gather responses from dioceses throughout The Episcopal Church and their final report will be an expression of those gathered reports.
Dr. Bonnie Anderson, President of the House of Deputies; The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop and Primate; The D020 Task Force c /o Office of The General Convention of The Episcopal Church The Episcopal Church Center 815 2nd Avenue New York City, NY 10017 Holy Week, 2011 Dear Bonnie, Katharine, and Members of the D020 Task Force: In response to General Convention Resolution D020 (2009) and at the request of the offices of The Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies and D020 Task Force, the Deputation in the Diocese of California facilitated a diocesan-wide conversation on the final draft of the proposed Anglican Covenant early this spring. We were impressed by the level of participation of members of this diocese. Open conversations were held by all six deaneries, involving leaders from almost all of our congregations; and a number of individual congregations also held separate discussions and sent us their comments. Many of the over two hundred laity and clergy attending these conversations were well prepared, demonstrating not only familiarity with the D020 Task Force Study Guide and additional historical background we provided, but deep affection for the Anglican Communion and our common heritage, a willingness to engage with the substance of the proposed Anglican Covenant, and a desire for continued conversation on the issues that confront the Body of Christ at this time. These conversations also included our Bishop and professors from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and the School for Deacons. Most participating in these conversations perceived an unsettling disconnect between the first three sections of the draft
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
Feature News covenant and section four, noting inherent discord between the articulation of our Anglican heritage as a fellowship of selfgoverning churches and the creation by section four of an official governance structure (the Standing Committee) acting as an effective disciplinary body at the Communion level. Moving towards a more disciplinary approach to our common life in the Communion posed for many a significant threat to the diversity amongst the churches of the Communion. That diversity includes not only differing perspectives on human sexuality and gender, but differences in our provincial polity, the cultural contexts in which we proclaim the Gospel, and the ways we interpret scripture. Introducing juridical process at the Communion level risks fostering and formalizing suspicion over our existing and future diversity, and empowers those who might wish to impose their judgments over differences, whether real or perceived, on other provinces. Participants noted the uncertain ways the covenant could introduce and enforce different levels of participation and influence in the Communion. Over the long term, the covenant could subsequently have a chilling effect on dialogue, particularly by introducing a punitive process into our common relationships. If a significant majority of the churches of the Communion adopt the covenant, our next controversy could lead to a rush to judgment by the Standing Committee outlined in section 4, rather than be cause for the deeper engagement and understanding explicitly named in section 3.2.3. One table group in a deanery-level discussion articulated our common concern that the proposed covenant, if adopted, would potentially formalize our disagreements so that cultural differences become increasingly enshrined as central theological issues dividing the Communion. The humility of the Communion’s current non-juridical processes around disagreement mitigates this danger. We note that cultural differences — many not yet publicly articulated — and our shared post-colonial heritage reside at the root of the present controversies, not differences over the core doctrines of our common, creedal faith. Many questioned why our historically broad statements of Communion and ecumenical relationships, such as the Chicago-Lambeth Quadrilateral and five marks of mission, are implicitly deemed by this process no longer sufficient points of commonality where we may continue to find fellowship. This concern reflects our doubts around the articulated need for a covenant, and whether it really would resolve rather than exacerbate ongoing and future tensions in the Communion. The notion of having a covenant sounded to many very similar to generating a confessional statement for the Communion, a significant departure from our shared heritage; a departure that introduces to Anglicanism a form of enforced ecclesiology that would, based on the historical experience of other covenanted and confessional churches, inevitably lead to exclusion. Both our Deputation and many in our wider conversations expressed misgivings about the way in which the proposed covenant was introduced to the Communion via the Windsor process, and how the ongoing conversation over its content has implied its legitimacy while neglecting to address a foundational question: Does having a covenant fundamentally change our nature as a creedal communion of churches? The vast majority engaged in these conversations in the Diocese of California agreed that the covenant would alter Anglicanism at this basic level, and not for the better. We note our deep value of the Anglican Communion, The Episcopal Church’s constituent part in it, and our ongoing desire to participate in its common life. We cherish our developing diocesan companion relationships and the inter-provincial relationships in shared mission a number of our congregations enjoy. Many of these relationships already transcend cultural and theological differences, witness to our unity in Christ, and reflect the diversity that has been part of our Christian heritage all the way back to the first apostolic Council of Jerusalem. We also find great hope in the ongoing Indaba process, noting the Lambeth 2008 Conference set a way forward by departing from legislative process at the level of Communion and instead cultivating conversations that lead to mutual understanding and strengthen our bonds of affection. A wide majority of our members believe that these Communion processes and direct relationships are far more life-giving in the Gospel and Spirit-filled than pursuing the formal structures offered by the proposed Anglican Covenant. With thanksgiving for your ministry and leadership in Christ, and wishing you a blessed Eastertide, The 2012 General Convention Deputation of the Diocese of California: the Rev. Vanessa Glass, Co-Chair; Warren J. Wong, Co-Chair; the Rev. David Y. Ota; Sarah E. Lawton; the Rev. Stacey Grossman; Carolyn W. Gaines; the Rev. Canon Michael Barlowe; Dr. Roderick B. Dugliss; the Rev. Richard E. Helmer p/BSG, Secretary; Kay Bishop; the Rev. Paul Fromberg; Scott Pomerenk, Co-Secretary; the Rev. M. Sylvia O. Vásquez; Alan Aw; the Rev. Vicki Gray; Patricia Smith cc: the Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus, Bishop of California Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
A bishop’s thoughts on the Anglican Covenant by the Rt. Rev. Marc Handley Andrus
he Archbishop of Canterbury is intent on the Anglican Communion having a formal covenant to order its intra-relationships. Each province of the communion (there are 38, of which The Episcopal Church is one) is being asked to vote on the latest draft of the covenant within a fairly narrow time frame. I feel strongly that we and the communion should reject this draft covenant and probably the idea of a covenant in general, given the view of what a covenant for the communion seems to mean for the Archbishop. I’ll outline my thoughts about an Anglican Covenant below.
The figure of the Archbishop of Canterbury
The figure of the Archbishop of Canterbury, as distinct from the incumbent of that office, is one of love and respect, based on the relationship believers have with Christ, rather than one of juridical power. We honor the archbishop because of love rather than fear. This model for the role of the Archbishop of Canterbury is more akin to that of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Istanbul in relation to the Orthodox Communion, than to the Pope in relation to the Roman Catholic Church. Our Communion, the Anglican Communion is also, thus, more akin to the Orthodox Communion than to the Roman Catholic Church, being a community of dioceses more horizontally arranged than a communion ordered on a vertical power axis. So from the figure of the Archbishop of Canterbury we get some clues as to what the nature of relationships within the Communion should be like. Let’s see where we might go from the example of the Archbishop of Canterbury as a representation of Christ
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
with Christ’s Church. … A Communion of Love
Christ-in-the church is a relationship that receives its shape from Christ-in-the Trinity; that is, the pouring of love between the persons of the Trinity is the image of the relationships between people in the church. One understanding of the Image of God is that it is not only a way to understand the ideal of an individual human life, but it is also a way of understanding how the church is ideally a community that relates within itself as the Trinity does within itself a Communion of Love. The Covenant doesn’t fit
The proposed Anglican Covenant is at root a document that supplies a way to discipline members of the communion. The idea of the covenant arose after two provinces of the communion, Canada and The Episcopal Church, acted to recognize the essential dignity of all people, in these instances of LGBT people. Thus, the proposed covenant is not about love but is an attempt to rein in parts of the communion that anger or displease other parts. Finally, stripped of all disguises, the covenant then is born of fear and not love.
The Lambeth Conference 2008 and the Anglican Covenant
In very practical terms, rather than theological as above, the proposed Anglican Covenant appears to me to be a particular desire of the current Archbishop of Canterbury, despite the witness of the Lambeth Conference. There were a number of discretionary
meetings during Lambeth 2008 devoted to the proposed covenant. I attended all of these meetings. At these meetings strong and widespread negative sentiment was expressed about any eventual covenant containing mechanisms to discipline members of the communion. Yet, despite this, the draft covenant before us contains such mechanisms. As in many other instances, it appears the Archbishop of Canterbury is privileging the opinions of the critics of The Episcopal Church and the Church of Canada.
teachings more and more to spelled-out doctrine, we have preferred to continue to say that our ethics derive from our practice of prayer, another way of saying that we are instructed by Christ in the sacraments. It seems important for us to hang on to this way of being, not because it is simply what we’ve done in the past, but because, as far as we can see, it is the Christly way to be. That being so, the proposed Anglican Covenant is deeply at odds with our way of being, and should be rejected by our church.
Within The Episcopal Church…
Our friends often tease us, and our critics offer harsher comments about the vagueness of our moral positions. What they mean by this is that we don’t have clear-cut rules that spell out our moral positions. But in my experience, Episcopalians are deeply moral people — moral people with maturity of personality. After reflecting on why we are the way we are, I’ve thought that it is because of our formation within the sacraments; that is, Christ is our teacher about right and wrong within the experience of the sacraments. The example I like to use about this is the distribution of the bread and wine in the Eucharist — the biggest donors are not asked to come forward first, not given the choicest pieces of bread or a better grade of wine, nor is any other group privileged in this regard. Thus, as I like to put it, Christ is instructing us in the Eucharist about fairness. When we leave the Eucharistic celebration we are prepared to be able to recognize, in daily events, instances that accord or do not with the teachings from Christ in the Eucharist. While most denominations have reduced their
The moment of the acceptance or rejection of the proposed Anglican Covenant is high. On the one hand, Archbishop Rowan is right when he has said that we need a global communion in order to deal with global problems. Let us note, though, before saying more, that the communion has been, in terms of vital, coordinated work on great global issues like climate change a virtual rather than an actual force for the good. So, on the other hand, while we need the communion to address globalized issues, it is crucial to determine what kind or nature of communion we are to be, as we are on the precipice of becoming real. A communion based on fear that expresses itself in power dynamics will fail at making lasting change for good. Love as the lifeblood of the communion will revivify God’s world, below and beyond the practical work we may do together on any issue. So let us not only reject the proposed covenant, but live as best we know that God intended us to live, in love. y — +MHA
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
The current draft of the proposed Anglican Covenant can be downloaded from this website: www.anglicancommunion.org/commission/covenant/ docs/The_Anglican_Covenant.pdf.
Instruments of Unity
A Benedictine Experience Sunday, July 10 – Sunday, July 17
an excerpt from a study document prepared by Dr. Roderick Dugliss with the Rev. Richard E. Helmer
oncerns over women in the episcopate as well as more broadly rising tensions around theological and doctrinal concerns in the communion in the late twentieth century gave rise to the InterAnglican Theological and Doctrinal Commission and the disputed Communion-wide authority of their subsequent reports, including The Virginia Report. The election, granting of consent (by General Convention), and ordination of the Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire in 2003 precipitated a process throughout the Anglican Communion that, among other things, revived the question as to whether or not the Lambeth Conference was, is, or should be a governing body for the communion. In response to these actions and other initiatives the Archbishop of Canterbury and other primates in the Anglican Communion called together a group that in turn produced The Windsor Report. It addressed the issues raised by the election, confirmation, and consecration of Bishop Robinson. In that document, four “instruments” were named as de facto bodies that act for the communion. Two have existed for some time: ■ The Archbishop of Canterbury — seen as a “first among equals.” ■ The Lambeth Conference, which is now comprised of those bishops specifically invited by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Two of these instruments are relatively new: ■ The Anglican Consultative Council was created in the latter part of the 20th century and is made up of bishops, clergy, and lay representatives from each of the 38 provinces of the communion. ■ The Primates Meeting, which started as an informal gathering, is still defining its role in the 21st century.
Another recommendation from the Windsor Commission was that there should be a statement of commonly held beliefs — an Anglican Covenant — the final of 5 or more drafts is now before us for consideration. This document, The Anglican Communion: Some facts to consider while reviewing the proposed Anglican Covenant can be downloaded at www.diocal.org/pcn. y
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
the quiet, discipline, and community of a contemplative retreat sponsored by The Friends of St. Benedict and the Diocese of California. This is the 26th Benedictine Experience at The Bishop’s Ranch in Healdsburg. The Experience is a time to nurture and strengthen our daily lives through prayer and spiritual companionship. Modeled after the balanced way of life set out by St. Benedict in his Rule, participants take part in an ordered day of prayer, study, work, and leisure. The presenters will be Sr. Donald Corcoran, OSB, who has been a Benedictine nun for 40 years, and the Very Rev. Dom Robert Hale, OSB, prior emeritus of New Camaldoli Hermitage in Big Sur. Special consideration will be given to the role of sacred music led by John Renke, director of music at St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Honolulu. For detailed information on registration, fees and deposits, lodging, and travel, please contact The Friends of St. Benedict, email@example.com, 202.363.8061; or Dorothy Jones, firstname.lastname@example.org, 415.381.3235.
I am an Episcopalian
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do not believe that the changes to Title IV of the canons of The Episcopal Church will grant the Presiding Bishop “metropolitan powers … so she can rule the church with an even greater rod of ecclesiastical iron.” (David Virtue in “The Fantasy World of Episcopal House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson,” May 9, 2011, www.virtueonline.org.) There are primates within the Anglican Communion, however, who believe they should be able to rule as a body on matters involving other communion members. At the same time there is a collective sense among some Episcopalians that our polity is shifting to grant the office of Presiding Bishop more primatial power. Mentioning the changing role of the office of the Presiding Bishop is necessary because in the time between 1940 and 1982, several events occurred that had some in The Episcopal Church seeking outside counsel. One example is the Civil Rights movement. Talk of “full inclusion” in The Episcopal Church is not new. This has been a struggle since post-Civil War reconstruction and talk of full inclusion of AfricanAmerican Episcopalians continued right up through the latter half of the 20th century. Other people of color faced this same struggle; simply consider what it must have been like for Episcopalians of Japanese descent after World War II. We do not talk enough about this history, and few are aware that many who fought to keep the leadership of The Episcopal Church lily-white, sought allies outside of our province. In the same era, those who opposed a revision to the Book of Common Prayer (the BCP was published in a revised edition
in 1982) also sought Anglican allies to put pressure on progressive Episcopalians. It was during this time that references to the “Anglican” identity of The Episcopal Church became more frequent, and references to the Anglican Communion as a unified structure more commonplace. Another linguistic tactic was to self-identify as “Anglo-Catholic” as a statement of orthodoxy and catholicity with Roman Catholics and Orthodox churches, unlike the more traditional usage depicting Anglican and Episcopal churches who had high catholic liturgical style, theological understanding, and personal piety. In 1974, at the 64th General Convention in Minneapolis, The Episcopal Church approved the ordination of women. This was the point of greatest departure for those clinging to the status quo. In opposition to the ordination of women, some bishops, clergy, and laity formed the Evangelical Catholic Mission (ECM). According to F. Earl Fox on his blog “The Road to Emmaus,” ECM “Priests were not allowed to concelebrate with women, parishioners refused to receive Holy Communion from women, and bishops who ordained women were avoided by ECM bishops.” Actually, that original vote to approve the ordination of women was a close one and the Most Rev. John Allin, Presiding Bishop at the time opposed it. Because there was no mandate, it was seen as a states rights issue and congregations and dioceses opposed to the ordination of women were not required to hire women in clerical orders. But it became difficult for ECM bishops to maintain their participation in the House of Deputies after the Most Rev. Frank Griswold consecrated
Barbara Harris as Bishop Suffragan of Massachusetts in 1989. Those opposed to women’s ordination appeared to be wildly out of step with the rest of society (in the United States anyway) and as their claims to scripture and tradition were easily countered, they could produce no rational arguments against women in Holy Orders. All they had left was to point to a prohibition in other churches that The Episcopal Church had historically been in communion with because of common origins. To state that the impetus for the Anglican Covenant all happened because of the approval of the election of V. Gene Robinson as Bishop of New Hampshire at the 2003 General Convention is simply absurd. My belief is that this event was chosen, because the ECM had lost membership in great numbers over the years and it simply was no longer fashionable to hold the ordination of women as their cause celebre. Volumes could be written about the differing contexts of the forty-four member churches of the Anglican Communion. Still more on why complex issues like full inclusion (either of ethnic groups or differing sexual or gender identities), prayer book revisions, and women’s ordination tend to come to the fore in The Episcopal Church sooner than most other communion partners. But perhaps our attempts at self-understanding ought to be focused on the strength of the Anglican Communion that is drawn from the autonomy and diversity of its members. To that end, by continuing to declare our independence we grant to others the fullness of their autonomy in the uniqueness of their own contexts. y
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DioCal Spotlight Episcopalians join others to remember Archbishop Oscar by the Rev. Richard Smith, Ph.D.
ver 300 people gathered on March 26 at San Francisco’s Mission Dolores Basilica to honor the memory of Archbishop Oscar Romero with prayer, food, music, poetry, and dance. In addition to Romero and the martyrs of El Salvador, this year’s celebration also remembered Bishops Gerardi of Guatemala and Ruiz of Mexico, both of whom gave their lives for persecuted Mayan peoples in their own countries. Two bishops, one Episcopal and one Roman Catholic, opened an interfaith prayer service and offered invocations and blessings. An imam intoned a blessing in Arabic, a Jewish leader read from the Torah, and two Native American leaders chanted a prayer for Native peoples. People shouted “Presente!” as the names of the martyrs were called out
and a candle was lit for each one. The Three Nations Indian Circle then honored those martyrs with a dance. The community applauded repeatedly as they listened to a recording of Romero’s final sermon on the day before his murder. Omega West Dance Company led a dance meditation on the Beatitudes, and the Reverend Cecil Williams, with characteristic humor, wisdom, and rhythm, preached about the need for hope. The reason behind Williams’ message was clear. Earlier in the liturgy, a Latino family had told of their three-year journey through a homeless shelter to a life of poverty and heartache after their father was deported to Mexico. After them, a young man told his story. Born in Nicaragua and brought to this country by his family as an undocumented child, he now faces deportation to his birth country, a land he
Christian and other religious leaders gather to honor Archbishop Romero and the martyrs of Central America and Mexico. Left to right: Bishop Otis Charles, representing Bishop Marc Andrus; Ms. Rita Semel, executive vice-chair of the San Francisco Interfaith Council; the Rev. Cecil Williams, Glide Memorial Church; Bishop William Justice, Roman Catholic Archdiocese, representing Archbishop George Niederauer; and Imam Dr. Amer Araim, president of the Islamic Community Outreach of California.
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barely remembers and where he now has no family or friends. There were prayers for justice in Central America and Mexico and for immigrants here in the Bay Area. A bishop-led procession wove through the Mission neighborhood with people carrying signs highlighting the need for more just immigration laws. After the liturgy, people gathered in the parish hall for a lively fiesta featuring Central American and Mexican food donated by local restaurants; music by Francisco Herrera, Ana Nigma, and Evelie Delfino Salas Posch; poetry by Jorge Argueta; and dance by Grupo Maiz and Three Nations Indian Circle. The day’s events reflected the rich cultures and stories of the people for whom Romero and the other martyrs gave their lives: not only their music and dance and poetry, but also their stories of fear,
Lighting the candles for the martyrs, from left to right: Deacon Vicente Cervantes, Mission Dolores; Jesuit Fr. Stephen Privett, president, University of San Francisco; Maryknoll Sister Joanne Doi; Salvadoran vice-consul Mr. Gregorio Arturo Palacios Cornejo; and Mr. Adolfo Yok, Los Misioneros de Nuestro Señor de Esquipulas.
DioCal Spotlight Romero and other martyrs Such tests of faith made this year’s remembrance of Romero and the other martyrs both poignant and necessary. Each year since March 24, 1980, when Romero was shot and killed as he offered the Eucharist, Bay Area Latino communities have gathered to remember his story and message of liberation. In 2009, local Episcopalians gathered for a celebration of their own. That year, delegations from four San Francisco parishes returned from El Salvador where they had heard the stories of many of the people for whom Romero gave his life. Upon returning, they gathered fellow Episcopalians in a liturgy at St. John the Evangelist in San Francisco. The following year, the thirtieth anniversary of Romero’s assassination, Bishop Marc Andrus of the Diocese of California convened an interfaith prayer service
Following the proclamation of the Gospel by the Rev. Gloria del Castillo of La Iglesia Episcopal del Buen Samaritano, center, Omega West Dancers lead the community in a dance meditation on the Beatitudes. Also shown from far left: the Rev. Deborah Lee, Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights – CLUE-CA; Carla De Sola, director of Omega West; and at far right Evelie Delfino Salas Posch, cantor, and Francisco Herrera, cantor and guitarist.
at Grace Cathedral. This year, rather than creating a separate celebration, Episcopalians planned the day in collaboration with thirteen other Bay Area religious and community organizations. Episcopal Bishop Marc Andrus joined Roman Catholic Archbishop George Niederauer in convening the day’s events. Dr. Felipe Sanchez, parishioner at San Francisco’s St. Gregory of Nyssa, led the liturgy committee. Fr. Richard Smith, associate priest at St. John the Evangelist in San Francisco, coordinated the various Bay Area organizations sponsoring the celebrations. Archbishop Romero and the Martyrs of El Salvador are among the Holy Men and Women of the Episcopal Church. Their feast day is March 24. A statue of Archbishop Romero stands in the western facade of Westminster Abbey in London. y
A family, their father deported three years ago, tells their story.
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Photos: Alfredo Casusa of David Perry and Associates
disappointment, and anger. That faith has been tested over the past year: ■ Under the Obama administration, the number of innocent families torn apart by deportation is at an all-time high. ■ The DREAM Act, which would have provided a path to citizenship for young people brought to this country at an early age, failed to pass Congress. As a result, educated, hard-working, young people, unable to obtain the Social Security card required for decent jobs, are consigned to the shadow economy of day labor, car washes, and housecleaning. ■ Arizona law SB 1070 and copycat laws in other states began using racial profiling to track down undocumented workers and mark them for deportation.
JULIA M c CRAY-GOLDSMITH
Who do we say that we are?
ven as the member churches of our communion wrestle with the implications of Anglican identity, Episcopalians near and far are prayerfully engaged in daily practices of discernment. Who are we? How are we called to act in the world? What kind of alternative way of life will we model as Christians? When Jesus asked “who do you say that I am?” (Mark 8:29), he was challenging his disciples to foreswear conventional wisdom and identify themselves in relationship to him. Trinity Menlo Park rector Matthew Dutton-Gillett agrees that relationship with God is central to our selfunderstanding. “We know who we are when our ‘idols’ — what we have, what we do, and what others think of us — are let go, and we bring what is left into prayerful encounter with God. Communities support this by creating environments of graceful encounter, and by witnessing in word and deed to the value of each person beyond and beneath these idols.” One such graceful community in the Diocese of California is the Commission on Ministry, whose members support Episcopalians in vocational discernment. I asked a few of these experienced spiritual guides what they had learned along the way. “The minister has only one instrument; ones self,” observed Judith Dunlop. “It is a gift to others to listen, to be present to another in times of both joy and sorrow. This gift cannot be given unless one is aware of the self and … understands that it is the Spirit of Christ that does all the work.” Sally Mancini further emphasized the importance of attention to the inner life for outer ministry. “I know who I am as a result of many years now of spending some time each day listening and talking to God by reading scripture, reading what other learned people say about it, and then pondering what it means to me.” But Sally doesn’t just ponder alone: “the other really important thing is that I am in three quite different formation groups. Being able to talk about my own and other’s spiritual journeys clarifies a great deal.” When our individual identity is affirmed in community, we are empowered to lives of authenticity and courage. Miracles can (and frequently do) happen when we support each other’s primary vocation as followers of Jesus. But in like manner, mistakes multiply when we affirm the wrong values: greed masquerading as good business sense, for example, or family-dividing cruelty as immigration policy. Thomas Merton once remarked that we should never underestimate our ability to deceive ourselves. That’s why the church takes its covenantal language so seriously. What can happen when we engage deeply with our ancient statements of common identity? “When I first returned to the Episcopal Church, I cried… whenever there was a Baptism,” recalled Melissa Ridlon. I felt like a fraud reciting the Baptismal Covenant.” She bravely accepted the personal challenge posed by this grief,
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however, and allowed herself—with God’s help, of course—to be drawn into a countercultural vision of a generous and hospitable community. “Now when I work with others using the Baptismal Covenant, time and again I see people relax into who they are at the very core, becoming both more safe and more willing to be vulnerable.” Practicing Faith: PARKER PALMER ON DISCERNMENT
“Let your life speak,” an adage Quakers use to encourage each other to deeper self-knowledge, is also the eponymous title of one of many books by the prolific teacher and writer Parker J. Palmer. He knows whereof his own life speaks: having abandoned a distinguished career as an academic and community organizer, Palmer spent ten years at the Quaker community in Pendle Hill Pennsylvania giving voice to his own life’s calling, and listening to that of others. What he learned along the way is explored in a series of graceful books, Let Your Life Speak, A Hidden Wholeness, The Active Life and others, which invite readers to accompany Palmer on his courageous journey towards authentic vocation. Reviewer Gail Hudson says of Palmer’s writing, “there are no how-to formulas… just fireside wisdom from an elder who is willing to share his mistakes and stories as he learned to live a life worth speaking about.” Why not take Parker J. Palmer — and your own’ life’s journey — along as traveling companions this summer? y
The Space Between The sacred elements: an alternative perspective
n her keynote speech, “Elements of Renewal: Fourfold Wisdom,” given at the 2010 Epiphany West Conference at Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley, CDSP’s Dr. Marion Grau cracked open the classic institutional forms of understanding of sacrament. “The sacrament is a deep life force around which a community gathers,” she said, “depending on it with a deep need and hunger that nothing else can satisfy.” Another way to think of it is this: something has sacramental value when you understand it as carrying a piece of you, even as you are carrying a piece of it; when you understand that each needs and depends on the other. The relationship is always mutual. As we move our anthropocentric worldview to a biocentric perspective, we can anticipate the opportunity to reframe our understanding of sacrament, and, ultimately, our sense of ritual. “Earth, water, fire, and air are deeply imagined ways of exploring and comprehending the world within and around us,” Grau continued, as a preface to her question: “Can we truly get over the self-focus that is forefronted by some of our own religious traditions, that focus almost all rites, texts, and practices on God/human or human/human interactions. Can we remember the elements . . . to give them back their rightful place into our own personal and global cosmos?” I am indebted to Dr. Grau for opening up a line of inquiry I might not otherwise have stumbled across. Earth, waters, wind, and fire — these are what all life forms hold in
common, the sacred elements. What better way to explore the parameters of a non-doctrinal, non-credal spiritual life than to tease out (borrow back) from churches the breadth and depth of sacrament, allowing those elements we hold in common to shape what Thomas Berry insists is the spirituality of the earth itself. Berry writes (The Spirituality of the Earth) “The crassness of our relation to the earth cannot but indicate a radical absence of spirituality in ourselves, not the lack of a spiritual dimension of the earth. The earth process has been generally ignored by the religious-spiritual currents of the West. Our alienation goes so deep that it is beyond our conscious mode of awareness.” Berry challenges us to distinguish between human tributes to the earth, and a true acknowledgement of the spirituality of the earth itself, including our human place within the earth community. So engaging Marion Grau, Thomas Berry, and Caroline Fairless in the same conversation (Oh I wish!), how better to acknowledge the spirituality of all life than to celebrate sacramentally with the elements all life forms hold in common: earth, waters, wind, fire. To be specific, take, for example, a loaf of bread, and a cup of wine. In Christian churches, these are defined for us (whether literal, metaphorical, historical, or symbolic) as the body and blood of Christ. For those who might understand these sacraments differently, there is little or no room in churches, at least not without a fair measure of deception. The truth is, the grain and the grape are shared not only among all humans, but across the species as well; it’s time to reclaim them. They are birthed and formed by the sacred elements of earth, waters, wind, and fire. To share in the bread and the wine is to celebrate the richness, the beauty, and the abundance of life. Another example, the sacrament of Baptism, which, in Christian churches, celebrates initiation into Christ’s body, the church. Pretty simple. But it’s a rite whose core is Jesus, and includes the theology of being cleansed from sin (Original Sin, by the way), dying and being reborn into the life of Christ. The waters of baptism, however, not only are shared by everyone, but they are a deep reminder that water forms our very identity; it is water which connects humans to all life forms; water, the basis of our very identity. Understood in this way, then, baptism is a rite of remembrance, or, as I have said elsewhere, a rite of the loss of forgetfulness. What has it cost us, within churches and outside both, to put a doctrinal and credal frame around the sacraments? This is fodder for a group discussion, church or not. I’m hoping to be a part of it, from the space between. ... y Caroline Fairless blogs at www.restoringthewaters.com Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
A Wounded Earth & A Crucified Christ the centuries, people of the Christian “ Over faith have meditated on the life of Jesus
and the scope of divine love — Jesus’ simple and profoundly powerful acts of including all the dispossessed at the table. Christ is understood to embrace the whole earth with self-giving love.
— The Rt Rev Marc Handley Andrus Bishop of California
contemporary, millennial Passion play, A Wounded Earth & A Crucified Christ was celebrated at the conjunction of Good Friday and International Earth Day. It is particularly fitting that this service was held at Grace Cathedral — Earth Day was first proclaimed at the 1969 UNESCO Conference
Photos: Abby McKee
held in San Francisco. A Wounded Earth & A Crucified Christ was a solemn liturgy exploring the relationship between Christ’s selfgiving love and humanity’s stewardship of the earth. This interactive service was held on the labyrinth of Grace Cathedral on Friday, April 22. Sacred dancers enacted the deposition of the corpus of Christ from the cross and created a living Pietá in the center of the labyrinth. Scripture readings and prayers that recalled Christ’s crucifixion were interlaced with the words of Hildegard of Bingen, Teilhard de Chardin, and others. An urgent call for participants to care for creation was especially present in the movements of the sacred dancers, the sound of the indigenous flute, and the tones of singing bowls. Those gathered joined in singing Taizé chants and blessed a symbol of the “Wounded Earth” as sacred dancers passed it around the labyrinth. — Mel Ahlborn
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
Pacific Church News y Summer 2011
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Summer 2011 • Vol. 148 No. 2 • The quarterly magazine of the Diocese of California, The Episcopal Church