Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Question: Who is the Beers Letter Really Aimed At?

Since it appears that Beers still has his head and it's not rolling down I-95 (at least we haven't heard that he has been sacked) and that in The Letter he threatens "Should your diocese decline to take that step, the Presiding Bishop will have to consider what sort of action she must take in order to bring your diocese into compliance" he is indeed speaking for the Presiding Bishop-Elect, Katharine Jefforts Schori. If this is not so, his head would have rolled by now.

The fact that she would have her lawyer write a letter directly to sitting diocesan bishops is quite extraordinary. If she were following any kind of sincere diplomatic protocol, she would have sent a message through another bishop who could deliver a letter from her on her behalf (if she was really interested in reconciliation, which apparently, she is not) expressing her concerns. To tell your lawyer to write a letter and drop it in the mail so that the two Diocesan bishops receive it just as she is having an audience with the Archbishop of Canterbury tells us exactly what she wants - these two men's heads on a platter. The Klingons do appears to be right after all. Revenge is a dish best served cold.

Still watching for the official ENS report. They are quick to report Via Media lobbying Standing Committees to reject the newly-elected Bishop of South Carolina, but are strangely silent on the Beers Letter. Funny, isn't it? Do they also understand what a colossal timing-mistake this is - that this engagement in Episcopal "bait and switch" days before the big hoohah is unfortunate. We all know it's not about women - that's so last century. This appears to be revenge - and a little "bait and switch." Things aren't looking so good so let's change the subject. Forget about Windsor - let's make it about All About Women, yes, that's the ticket.

It could be that the New York Summit was the last chance for the moderates to have a voice in this process and it was a massive failure. The next chance was the Camp Allen meeting and that showed that there is a crack running straight down the church inside the rank and file - including another bishop who is a woman, Bishop Wolfe of Rhode Island - so it isn't about women after all!

Is the crack widening inside The Episcopal Church? The real crisis is one where the anchor of the church has been cut from the boat and the boat is now drifting out to sea.

It's such a desperate sort of act, taken at such a wrong sort of time, one could infer The Letter is actually aimed at her own theological constituency. It's obviously not aimed at the orthodox (we know it's not All About Women) unless it's just to provoke bad behaving blue meanies. So if it's not the orthodox, could it be that it's aimed at her own wing of the church? If true, it is very interesting to consider. Why does she need to fire them up?



Anonymous said...

Hey BB ... I believe this is part of an excellent political strategy -- I was not at GC06, so have distant view. What comes out that first week when you all were gathered in the hall and Bishop Duncan & Bishop Robinson spoke in tandem are only those two speeches, we miss all others. Side by side, Robinson does an excellent appeal to reason where Duncan appeal to theology. I hate to say it, but as political speeches go, Robinson probably won in the court of men (public opinion), where Duncan clearly won in the court of the Lord.

The American public doesn't know who is the bishop of RI, so the spin that those "meanies are woman haters" will distract from the sexuality issue. When she was elected, I had a gut DC politics type feeling that this was to connect the women's ordination issue to the human sexuality issues. Not that surprising considering some of the secular feminist authors doing the same.

Our problem is we expect a theological argument but what TEC is giving is a political one, doing it quite well I might add. The letter from the chancellor maybe a warning KJS plans on using civil means to enact her agenda. Thus "the new sheriff in town" notice, remember they already think in the mini-me mode, so with regret, I think we must plan on little concern about the Anglican Communion, much effort on how to manipulate non-ecclesiastical structures such as the media and civil judicial and legislative bodies. Not a game we're used to be playing.

Anonymous said...

ADDENDUM: That's the game I speculate TEC will play, not that we sound join them.

Anonymous said...

Dyslexia: arrgh! "not we should join them"