Saturday, September 30, 2006

Now Thomas (called Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord!"

But he said to them, "Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe it."

A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe."

Thomas said to him, "My Lord and my God!"

Then Jesus told him, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."

-John 20:24-29

Friday, September 29, 2006

Agreement Reached: Bishop Martyn Minns to remain at Truro; will continue in to exercise his rector duties

For the past month we have been in conversation with Bishop Lee regarding my ministry here at Truro during this critical time of transition. Our goal has been to find a way to both honor the Vestry’s desire for me to continue to exercise the duties of Rector and the Bishop’s understandable concerns about the canonical challenge that this presents. I am delighted to let you know that we have agreed on a way forward.

As you all know, Truro has been engaged in a search process for a new Rector with the goal of issuing a call by the first quarter of 2007. On August 20, when I was consecrated as Bishop of the Church of Nigeria to serve as a missionary bishop for CANA (Convocation of Anglicans in North America) I ceased to have canonical residence in the Diocese of Virginia. In order to allow me to continue to exercise the duties of Rector I now require a license from the Bishop of Virginia. This has been granted and so will allow me to continue my ministry among you during this critical phase of our life together.

As part of the agreement, I have assured Bishop Lee that I will not perform any “episcopal acts” within the boundaries of the Diocese of Virginia through January 1, 2007. In other words, I will respect his jurisdiction and not conduct confirmations or ordinations in Virginia during this time.

I am very grateful for Bishop Lee’s generosity in making these rather unusual arrangements and pleased that we have found a way forward that brings glory to God and honors His Church.

Your brother in Christ,

BabyBlueVideoCast: Episode Two - A Letter From Frank (or let's not wake the sleeping lion)

YouTube seems unwell tonight, so click on the headline above for the latest episode of BabyBlue VideoCast: A Letter From Frank. And please - don't wake the Lion.

"The Archbishop has always encouraged exchanges of views, as have I. Therefore, I appreciate the concern of those who attended the Texas meeting for the faithfulness of our church. At the same time, such encouragement does not necessarily imply affirmation of or agreement with points of view expressed in the course of such exchanges."

F. Griswold

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Breaking News: All Charges Dropped Against Bishop Schofield

Diocese of San Joaquin: September 28, 2006

All Charges Dropped

Bishop John-David Schofield received a call this morning from Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold stating that the Review Committee met and voted unanimously to drop all charges against Bishop Schofield. The Review Committee also found that the use of Canon IV.9 (Abandonment of Communion) was an inappropriate use of canon law.

NOTE FROM BB: Click on the link above for the background of this major threat against Bishop Schofield by four other Episcopal bishops in California.

Ground Control to Major Tom: 815 Spins and Spins Camp Allen and Kigali

Ground control to major tom
Ground control to major tom
Take your protein pills and put your helmet on

D Bowie 1969

BB NOTE: Frank has done it. Let's just take the Windsor Bishops Statement and the Kigali Communique, shoves it into the TEC Washer and hits the spin cycle. What comes out? He should have checked the label first. Do you see the elitist tone in this statement? Does he think that the laity are a bunch of dunderalls? Does he truly think he's writing to his fellow Bishops - this is not written like he even knows who he's writing to. I always dread when ever I read the phrase "Let me share ..." That does not usually bode well.

More commentary later - have to zoom back to the office from the P Street Starbucks, but for your afternoon reading, be sure to swallow your chai before reading. Trust me.

From Frank Griswold:

My dear brothers and sisters:

We have all received within the last days a letter from the bishops who gathered at Camp Allen at the invitation of Don Wimberly. As well, you may have seen an unsigned communiqué sent from a gathering of primates and others from the global south which was held in Rwanda. Let me share some reflections about these two meetings with you.

With regard to the gathering in Texas, advance and follow-up information about this meeting suggest an involvement by the Archbishop of Canterbury. It is important for you to know that the Texas meeting was in no way held at the Archbishop's initiative nor was it planned in collaboration with him. The two bishops from the Church of England did not attend as delegates of the Archbishop, nor were they empowered to speak on his behalf except to give the message that "the bishops meeting are bishops of the Catholic Church in the Anglican Communion." The Archbishop has always encouraged exchanges of views, as have I. Therefore, I appreciate the concern of those who attended the Texas meeting for the faithfulness of our church. At the same time, such encouragement does not necessarily imply affirmation of or agreement with points of view expressed in the course of such exchanges.

I would like to observe here that our House contains many points of view held by persons of unquestionable faith whose desire is to be faithful to the mind and mission of Christ. Because of this, I have seen during these nine years how unhelpful it can be for us as a community when we separate ourselves from one another by signing, or not signing, statements.

As we have learned, position statements can easily occlude the more subtle dimensions of agreement and disagreement, which is where our deepest engagement with one another can occur. As much as we draw comfort from those who share our own point of view, it is important for us on all sides to realize that truth in its fullness cannot be contained in any one perspective.

The fact that some among us feel we did not go far enough in responding to the invitations of the Windsor Report while others feel we have gone too far is to be expected in a church in which people hold differing theological perspectives. We are making our best efforts within our church to be faithful to the Windsor process, and I am gratified by how we, for the most part, are comporting ourselves as brothers and sisters in Christ.

The letter from Texas said it is the clear sense of the signers that "the General Convention of 2006 did not adequately respond to the request made of the Episcopal Church by the Communion through the Windsor Report and the Primates at Dromantine." It says that this view is "consistent with the Archbishop of Canterbury's Holy Cross Day letter to the Primates."

Given the very nuanced and cautious way in which the Archbishop expresses himself, I think it is important here to refer back to that letter and what Rowan actually said, and I quote: "It is also clear that the Episcopal Church has taken very seriously the recommendations of the Windsor Report; but the resolutions of General Convention still represent what can only be called a mixed response to the Dromantine requests. The advisory group has spent much time in examining these resolutions in great detail, and its sense is that although some aspects of these requests have been fully dealt with, there remain some that have not."

I note here that Archbishop Robin Eames, Chairman of the Lambeth Commission which produced the Windsor Report, says in his introduction: "This report is not a judgment. It is part of a process. It is part of a pilgrimage toward healing and reconciliation." As such, I believe the "Windsor process" is a process of mutual growth which calls for patience, mutual understanding and generosity of spirit rather than stark submission.

It also needs to be said that the assessment of the responses of the Episcopal Church to the Windsor process is not the responsibility of self-chosen groups within the Communion. At the April 2006 meeting of the Joint Standing Committee of the primates and the Anglican Consultative Council a small working group drawn from different parts of the Communion was identified to consider the actions and decisions of our General Convention. They will communicate to both the Joint Standing Committee and then the Primates Meeting in February. The Archbishop has repeatedly underscored the need to allow this process to unfold.

The General Convention in Resolution A165 affirmed our commitment to the Windsor process. From my perspective, being faithful to the Windsor process -- and the Covenant process which is integral to it -- calls for patience and rules out actions which would preempt their orderly unfolding. In my view, portions of the Kigali statement that take issue with the actions of the Episcopal Church in advance of hearing from the advisory group, and before the
Covenant has an opportunity to be developed, are inconsistent with the Windsor process, as are continuing incursions of bishops from other provinces into our dioceses. Patience and respect for one another and our provincial structures are required on the part of us all.

The communiqué from Kigali recommends that there be a separate ecclesial body within our province. The suggestion of such a division raises profound questions about the nature of the church, its ordering and its oversight. I further believe such a division would open the way to multiple divisions across other provinces of the Communion, and any sense of a coherent mission would sink into chaos. Such a recommendation appears to be an effort to preempt the Windsor process and acting upon it would create a fact on the ground, making healing and
reconciliation -- the stated goal of the Windsor process -- that much more difficult to achieve.

Having said that, I am well aware that some within our own Episcopal Church are working to achieve such an end. Efforts, some more overt than others, toward this end have been underway since before the 1998 Lambeth Conference. More recently, the Colorado-based organization called the Anglican Communion Institute has posted on its website a paper outlining a four-part strategy toward a new "Constituent body" in the United States, rather than the Episcopal Church, which would participate in the development of an Anglican Covenant. Though the Texas meeting included consultants who are part of the Anglican Communion Institute, I know this goal is not shared by all of the bishops who signed the letter from Texas.

The Kigali communiqué questions Bishop Jefferts Schori's ability to represent all of our dioceses. The role of primates is to bear witness as fully as possible to the life and complexities of their own provinces. I have sought to bring to the primates' meetings the wide range of opinions and the consequent tensions within our own church. I have every confidence that Katharine will do the same. Furthermore, the voices from dioceses that the
Kigali communiqué fears will not be heard seem to be well represented among the primates themselves.

I am in full agreement with the Kigali communiqué's declaration that the challenges facing our Anglican structures can be a distraction from the work of the gospel. I am glad to know that a great deal of time at Kigali was devoted to such concerns as poverty eradication, HIV/AIDS, peace building and evangelization. Here I note our own church's commitment to the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, and pray that our mutual concerns will allow us
to work together for the healing and reconciliation of the world, and thereby find the source of our healing and reconciliation as a Communion.

I end these reflections with a quotation from one of our great Anglican spiritual guides and teachers of prayer, Evelyn Underhill. The coming of the Kingdom is perpetual. Again and again, freshness, novelty, power from beyond the world break in by unexpected paths bringing unexpected change. Those who cling to tradition and fear all novelty in God's relation to the world deny the creative activity of the Holy Sprit, and forget that what is now tradition was once innovation; that the real Christian is always a revolutionary, belongs to a new race, and has been given a new name and a new song.

May we indeed be guided by the creative activity of the Holy Spirit as we continue through these challenging days, and in the fullness of time may our various divisions find their reconciliation in the One in whom all things have been reconciled, making it possible for us -- with one heart and one mind -- to sing a new song.

Yours ever in Christ,


Wednesday, September 27, 2006

'What happened then, Dudders?' (Petunia asked her son.)
'Felt... felt... felt... as if... as if...'
'As if you'd never be happy again,' Harry supplied tonelessly.
'Yes,' Dudley whispered, still trembling.
'So!' said Uncle Vernon, voice restored to full and considerable volume as he straightened up. 'You put some crackpot spell on my son, so he'd hear voices and believe he was ... was doomed to misery or something, did you?'
'How many times do I have to tell you?' said Harry, temper and voice both rising. 'It wasn't me! It was a couple of Dementors!'
'A couple of ... what's this codswallop?'
'De ... men ... tors,' said Harry slowly and clearly. 'Two of them.'
'And what the ruddy hell are Dementors?'
'They guard the wizard prison, Azkaban,' said Aunt Petunia.

Who is the Poet Laureate of the Left? Well, it's not Bob Dylan apparently

By Sean Curnyn

A good deal of hoopla greeted the grizzled rock-musician Neil Young's musical assault on George W. Bush earlier this year. His album Living With War included a hundred-voice choir singing a song entitled "Let's Impeach the President." For those survivors of anti-Vietnam war protests, and their younger would-be imitators, it was a moment for a sharp intake of breath and the tantalizing hope that maybe now, after all, music really could change the world. I mean, everyone has to sit up and take notice of Neil Young, right?

Young's crusading album included another song called "Flags of Free dom," in which he gave a name-check to Bob Dylan, and adapted the melody of Dylan's own somewhat more lyrically complex song "Chimes of Freedom."

He really should have known better. In an interview several months later with Edna Gundersen in USA Today, Dylan was asked about the absence of any song about the current war on his own latest album, Modern Times.

"Didn't Neil Young do that?" he jokes . . . "What's funny about the Neil record, when I heard 'Let's Impeach the President,' I thought it was something old that had been lying around. I said, 'That's crazy, he's doing a song about Clinton?'"

With his sly and somewhat wicked response, Dylan had (1) desperately frustrated the considerable number of more obvious Dylan fans who have been waiting on the edge of a cliff for him to say or sing something--anything!--against President Bush and the Iraq war and (2) told Neil Young none-too-subtly that he found his recent ultrapolitical songwriting essentially pointless.

Somehow, after over 40 years of evidence to the contrary, much of the world seems to continue to expect the man who is arguably America's greatest songwriter to sign on to left/liberal causes at the first opportunity. If nothing else, it is proof that in attempting to kidnap Dylan's songs (in Dylan's own words, his songs were "subverted into polemics" in the 1960s), the left succeeded in convincing the average person that both the work and the man did, indeed, belong to them.

In the summer run-up to the 2004 presidential campaign, a concert tour of anti-Bush musicians was being organized, led by Bruce Springsteen. They would perform in swing states in support of John Kerry. The advance press regarding the tour always prominently mentioned Bob Dylan as one of the musicians being talked about for the lineup. There was no surprise about this expressed in the stories; after all, campaigning against Republican presidents is what Bob Dylan has always done, isn't it? But when dates and lineups were finally announced for the "Vote for Change" tour, one name was prominently missing: that of Bob Dylan. And indeed, any scrutiny of the record would show that he has never endorsed a political candidate (although some political candidates have endorsed him). The closest he has ever come would be the statement in his memoir, Chronicles, that his "favorite politician" circa 1961 was Barry Goldwater.

As tempted as he might have been two years ago to give the crew what they wanted (probably not at all), the true nature of Dylan's independence was tested in the crazy crucible of the 1960s, and proven by the degree to which he resisted being crowned king by those who begged for only a word from him. It always comes back to that time, and to the Vietnam war, for Bob Dylan, especially when the media are doing one of their thumbnails of his career. He didn't ask for it to be that way; it just is. As he said to Rolling Stone in his most recent interview:

Did I ever want to acquire the Sixties? No. But I own the Sixties I'll give 'em to you if you want 'em. You can have 'em.
It's an interesting paradox. Looking at the record, Vietnam should have been the wedge that forced the left to reject Dylan as a matter of dogma, because he failed to give them anything that they demanded from him, and actually gave them the opposite of what they wanted.

Instead, the Vietnam war is the seemingly unbreakable link that ties Dylan to the left in the popular consciousness. Consider: Dylan wrote no songs about the Vietnam war during the 1960s. Zero. The songs Dylan wrote that antiwar protesters later seized upon (from Blowin' in the Wind on down) were written when the Vietnam war was little more than a twinkle in John F. Kennedy's eye. A close study of those songs would also reveal, as Dylan himself has stated in so many words, that they are not "antiwar" songs, as such. Just as with all his best work, they are based upon an almost unerring sense of human nature and a remarkable ability to ask questions that provoke revealing answers in the listener.

"How many times must the cannonballs fly?" An honest listener must admit: Cannonballs will always fly, in this world--and the song does not deny that. Less philosophical listeners demanded other, more specific, answers from the songs and from their singer.

Consider also: Dylan never spoke out against the Vietnam war in the 1960s. Not once. It was not for want of being asked. At a 1965 press conference in San Francisco he was asked if he would be participating in an anti-war protest later that day. He replied, "No, I'll be busy tonight." The tape shows that he was all but laughing while he said it.

He wasn't laughing some years later when people rifled through his garbage, and protested outside the home he shared with his wife and children, because they were unhappy with the records their "leader" was making. With America's name at a low-water mark in the world and in the minds of the protesters at home, Dylan recorded Nashville Skyline, an album of sweet country music that can also be heard as love songs to a simpler America, and one that was certainly very far from Dylan's front door.

Despite the heat he took, he backed down not one bit. In an interview in Sing Out! magazine in 1968, Dylan was pressed on how any artist could be silent in the face of the war. Dylan talked about a painter friend of his who was in favor of the war, and said that he "could comprehend him." Pressed further on how he could possibly share any values with such a person, Dylan responded:

I've known him a long time, he's a gentleman and I admire him . . . Anyway, how do you know that I'm not, as you say, for the war?

The topic was dropped there.

While most left-wing Dylan fans have always quickly moved to forgive or forget Dylan's sins, there are always those who continue to upbraid him. Mike Marqusee, in The Politics of Bob Dylan's Art (2003), says, "If public life is an ongoing test for the artist, then when it came to Vietnam, Dylan failed." He also bemoans the "fatalism of the later Dylan"--as if songs that place their hope primarily in the next world's justice are somehow more "fatalistic" than 1963's "The Ballad of Hollis Brown." Earlier this year, in The Nation, Richard Goldstein took Dylan to task for his "sexism" and told us that "the rod of ages he clings to . . . is a phallus."

On the other hand, there is also a largely unheralded brand of listener who is perceiving a funny thing in Dylan's latter-day work: Many of his apparently secular songs of romantic love seem to resonate most strongly, and are arguably best understood, as songs of devotion to God. Is Dylan in some sense masking his (always controversial) faith in this (almost blasphemously) sly manner, where "you" often really means "You"?

It does appear clear that our view of Bob Dylan has been constricted by the "a-changin'" times during which he's worked. And while the music of peers like Young and Springsteen is probably destined for artifact status as the decades pass by, Dylan's seems likely to continue provoking consideration well into the future. It is also likely that that future belongs to those Dylan listeners who are not so much flummoxed by the enigma of an ever-shifting man of many faces--who supposedly swings back and forth between leftism, conservatism, faith, and nihilism--but instead to those who see a continuum in the precocious 22-year-old who wrote, "How many years can a mountain exist / before it is washed to the sea?" and the at-peace-in-his-own-skin 65-year-old who now sings:

In this earthly domain
Full of disappointment and pain
You'll never see me frown
I owe my heart to you
And that's sayin' it true
And I'll be with you when the deal goes down.

Posterity is likely to understand that the politics of Dylan's art has always been on another level entirely.

Sean Curnyn is writing a book on political and moral themes in the work of Bob Dylan.

© Copyright 2006, News Corporation, Weekly Standard, All Rights Reserved.
"Dumbledore lowered his hands and surveyed Harry through his half-moon glasses. 'It is time,' he said, 'for me to tell you what I should have told you five years ago, Harry. Please sit down. I am going to tell you everything.'"

-Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix, by J.K. Rowling

But wait - there's more! Honorary President of the Tin Foil Hat Club: Luna Lovegood

And possibly my favorite Harry Potter character - well, other than that Potions Professor turned Half Blood Prince. Introducing Luna ((Evanna Lynch) Lovegood, Ravenclaw House, Radish earrings and butterbeer cork jewelry connoisseur, Dumbldore's Army regular, and FOH (Friend of Harry). Thinks everything printed in The Quibbler is true (isn't it?). So when did Cornelius Fudge stop baking Goblin pies?

Monday, September 25, 2006

Yikes! More photos from Order of the Phoenix (and we just thought it was a busy weekend for Episcopalians!)

Ron, Harry, and Hermione.
Dumbledore's Army
Professor Delores Umbridge at her desk, kitty plates and all. Tea anyone?

Click on the photos and you can see them up close and personal.

The Great and Wonderful "Woz" Speaks!

Those of us who are Apple Geeks (my first computer was an Apple II which I typed my BFA Thesis on) are all in awe of the Great and Wonderful Woz. He is legendary. Now he speaks in a new book which BabyBlue is having flown in as we speak from Amazon - stay tuned for the review. But in the meantime, here's an article from the San Francisco Gate (and if you click on the headline above, you can listen to a podcast from the Great Woz Himself!), including an exerpt from the new Woz Autobiography where he talks about what brought him and Steve Jobs together - yep, you guessed it! Mr. Dylan once again. It just figures that Dylan had to be the inspiration behind Apple. No wonder he did the iPod commercial. Here's the article:

Wozniak book reveals the core of Apple
- Ellen Lee, Chronicle Staff Writer
Monday, September 25, 2006

Click to View

As teenagers, before they co-founded Apple Computer Inc., Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs would listen to Bob Dylan and the Beatles and debate which one was better.

Dylan, with his soulful lyrics, won.

The two also pulled numerous pranks, at one point winding up in the back seat of a police car and talking their way out of getting arrested. And naturally they would dissect technology, from telephone systems to early video games to the first incarnations of the Apple computer.

Some of these stories are being told publicly for the first time in Wozniak's autobiography, "iWoz: From Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple and Had Fun Doing It," which arrives in bookstores today.

The narrative, co-written with journalist Gina Smith, comes as Apple, largely written off as dead during the mid-1990s, rides high on the success of its iPod digital media player and new line of Intel-based Macintosh computers. The iPod holds 70 percent of the MP3 player market and helped make the company $4.37 billion in revenue during its most recent quarter.

"iWoz" briefly addresses the comeback of the company, calling Jobs' return as chief executive officer "exactly what Apple needed." But Wozniak, who went on to start another company, teach, do philanthropic work and play polo on his Segway, mostly spends the book's 300 pages talking about his teenage friendship with Jobs and the events that led to the legendary start of Apple.

"I wanted to get that out for a long time," Wozniak said in an interview. "People wanted to hear it, and this is coming right out of my mouth."

In essence, it's the story of the lesser-known Steve, not the one in the black turtleneck and jeans who has come to embody the Cupertino technology company in the news and entertainment media, but the one who 30 years ago dreamed up the idea to marry a keyboard, computer and monitor.

The book attempts to correct some misconceptions about Wozniak and the company, including how he invented the Apple computer and his reasons for leaving the company in 1985. Wozniak, who to this day remains an Apple employee, said he left to start a new company developing a remote control, not because he was unhappy there. But a reporter at the time misconstrued his words and got the story "very wrong," he said.

"I think it's time to set the record straight," he says in his book. "So much of the information out there about me is wrong. I've come to hate books about Apple and its history so much because of that."

Of course, the gossip, rumors and speculation still run pretty wild about Apple -- and about "iWoz." Much has been made in the Apple blogosphere, for instance, about Jobs declining to write a forward for the book, suggesting a rift between the two Steves.

Both Wozniak and Smith have their theories. Early on, Jobs had verbally agreed to write a forward, but had never written one before, Wozniak said. Later, Wozniak said, Jobs was sent an early copy of the book, before the last chapter -- which credits Jobs for Apple's resurgence -- was written. Wozniak suspects that Jobs didn't appreciate the way he was sometimes portrayed in the book.

"I think it was an accidental misunderstanding and communications problem," Wozniak said.

Smith, who spent a year interviewing Wozniak for hours at a time for the book, added that Jobs had other matters on his plate, too. Days after Jobs sent her an e-mail declining to pen the forward, Pixar Animation Studios, which Jobs also helmed, was sold to Disney, making Jobs the largest individual Disney shareholder and a member of its board of directors.

"Steve Jobs was very nice about it," Smith said. "There are no hard feelings between Jobs and Woz."

Wozniak isn't sure if he will follow up "iWoz" with an "iWoz II" or "iWoz 2.0." The book does leave out many of his pranks, he said, including his latest one, printing professional-looking stickers saying, "Please do not flush over cities." On a recent flight, he stuck them on the toilet handle in the plane's bathrooms.

He has "tons and tons" of pranks that didn't make it into the book. But he said about a sequel, "Let's wait until the (run for this book) ends before I hazard a guess."
Excerpts from "iWoz"

On his early days with Steve Jobs

Steve and I were into listening to Bob Dylan and his lyrics, trying to figure out who was better, Dylan or the Beatles. We both favored Dylan because the songs were about life and living and values in life and what was really important. The Beatles mostly made these nice little happy songs -- you know, nice-to-know-you, nice-to-be-with-you, nice-to-be-in-love-with-you songs. They were simple -- even after albums like Rubber Soul came out. The songs the Beatles did were not as deep down and affecting your soul and emotions as Dylan's were. They were more like pop songs. To us, Dylan's songs struck a moral chord. They kind of made you think about what was right and wrong in the world, and how you're going to live and be.

At any rate this first introduction we never forgot and later on Steve and I were really linked. Linked forever.

On designing the Apple I

I can tell you almost to the day when the computer revolution as I see it started, the revolution that today has changed the lives of everyone.

It happened at the very first meeting of a strange, geeky group of people called the Homebrew Computer Club in March 1975. This was a group of people fascinated with technology and the things it could do. Most of these people were young, a few were old, we all looked like engineers; no one was really good-looking. Ha. Well, we're talking about engineers, remember. We were meeting in the garage of an out-of-work engineer named Gordon French.

After my first meeting, I started designing the computer that would later be known as the Apple I. It was that inspiring.

On starting Apple

We were in (Steve Jobs') car and he said -- and I can remember him saying this like it was yesterday, "Well, even if we lose our money, we'll have a company. For once in our lives, we'll have a company."

To come up with the $1,000 we thought we'd need ... I sold my HP 65 calculator for $500. The guy who bought it only paid me half though, and never paid me the rest. I didn't feel too bad because I knew HP's next-generation calculator, the HP 67, was coming out in a month and would cost me only $370 with the employee discount.

And Steve sold his VW van for another few hundred dollars. He figured he could ride around on his bicycle if he had to. That was it. We were in business.

"We have a gig today. It would be a really, really bad thing if I drowned." (Where's Elvis when you need him?)

Part III of "A Day in the Life of The Edge," by Bono. Tip of the TinFoil Hat to Kevin! Thanks!

The Edge meets "the Pavarotti" - watch that right cross (Bono knows all about it, by the way)

Part Two of "A Day in the LIfe of The Edge," by Bono.

First photos from Order of the Phoenix (now filming) released

This photo (with Dan Radcliffe returning as Harry Potter, now age 15) is from the opening chapter of Order of the Phoenix, by JK Rowling. In these scenes, Dementors (gosh, we sure know about them these days) are roaming around Privet Drive and attack Harry Potter and his cousin, Dudley.

Here we have our first look at that most horrible of horrible teachers, the Grand Inquisitor herself, Delores Umbridge (Imelda Staunton) with Professor McGonagal (Maggie Smith) and Professor Trelawny (Emma Thompson), as Argus Filch (David Bradley) looks on. This is no doubt that this is the scene where Umbridge sacks Trelawny - this scene alone will be worth the price of a ticket.

We can hardly wait.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Post-Camp Allen: Five Possibilities

“We are grateful for the helpful briefing from the Archbishop of Canterbury, brought to us through the Bishops of Durham and Winchester. We have corresponded in turn with the Archbishop and communicated our hopes with respect to continuing in full constituent Communion membership. It is our intention to offer a faithful and dynamic witness within the Episcopal Church.”

Okay, we can read this several ways.

#1 - A disassociation from the actions of General Convention by the Windsor Bishops. It is implied that they are offering “a faithful and dynamic witness within the Episcopal Church” where Griswold, Schori and the “TEC Gang” are not.

#2 - The sentence is not yet completed. In other words, one could read it they plan to “offer” their witness within the Episcopal Church as long as they remain in communion with Canterbury. That is not a done deal.

#3 - Identifies that there is indeed a split inside the Episcopal Church between the Windsor Compliant Bishops and the Non-Windsor Compliant Bishops. Who then represents the Anglican presence in the United States? Stay tuned.

#4 - These bishops recognize that a major departing of LAITY is about to happen and they are scrambling to try to keep their own people from zooming off into the sunset.

#5 - Same old, same old - “when is the next meeting and will they be serving tea?”


Stand Firm Interviews Bishop Iker on the Windsor Bishops Meeting at Camp Allen

BB NOTE: Many, many thanks to Greg and the gang at Stand Firm for this excellent - and clarifying interview - with the Bishop of Ft. Worth. Thank you!

"Everyone needs to keep in mind that Camp Allen wasn't designed to be a response to the meeting in Africa, or even something that was being done in conjunction with it. They were two meetings happening for different purposes, in different places."
Jack Leo Iker
Bishop of the Diocese of Fort Worth

Interview on Saturday, September 23, 2006

Greg Griffith: Matt Kennedy and I have made a lot of people upset by characterizing the Camp Allen statement as a failed response to Kigali. Matt termed it a "rebuff of our allies." I said, "I'm looking for an explanation as to how these guys didn't sell us down the river."

Bishop Iker: Everyone needs to keep in mind that Camp Allen wasn't designed to be a response to the meeting in Africa, or even something that was being done in conjunction with it. They were two meetings happening for different purposes, in different places.

Camp Allen was an opportunity for some bishops to stand up and be counted as Windsor bishops. General Convention didn't give us that opportunity in an official capacity, so we created this one. When a group of us visited the Archbishop of Canterbury in May, we said we were concerned that General Convention's response to the Windsor Report might end up being inadequate. If that turned out to be the case, the archbishop said he would like a "head count" of those bishops who were willing to abide by the terms of the report. Was it five of us? Ten? Fifteen?

Look at what came out of this meeting: Twenty-one bishops who occupy a wide variety of positions on the questions before us, agreed to four plainly-stated points:

First, that General Convention didn't make an adequate response to the Windsor Report. Second, that we as a group affirm, embrace, and submit to the report. Third, that we all recognize the perilous position many of our congregations find themselves in; some have already left, some are on the verge of leaving, while many others continue to struggle with the question; and that they all need a safe place. And fourth, that there is a need for different levels of disassociation from what ECUSA is doing.

One of the remarkable things about Camp Allen is that all 21 bishops were able to agree that these dioceses need such a relationship with another primate, whatever you decide to call it. For some, it's APO. For others, it's joining the Network. We were delighted to learn that the Kigali statement recognized the same thing. But quite simply, the Global South primates have had it with ECUSA. Having to deal with our problems is a huge distraction from their mission and ministry.

Greg Griffith: Some people are concerned about the change in language from "alternative primatial oversight" to "alternative primatial relationship." Can you explain to us what that change means?

Bishop Iker: At the New York City meeting, PB-elect Schori responded to our inquiries about alternative oversight by saying that she couldn't give to another primate what she didn't have, which was oversight of our dioceses. Leaders in the Diocese of Springfield said that was correct - that technically, the Presiding Bishop doesn't have what we define as "oversight." Rather, the dioceses that are appealing for alternative "oversight" are looking to place ourselves in an ecclesial relationship with an orthodox primate of the Anglican Communion. So the word "relationship" was suggested as a replacement for "oversight."

Greg Griffith: One of the lines in the statement has caused a lot of concern. It's the one that says you all pledge to work within ECUSA, which many of us we see as the cause of the problem, not the source of the solution.

Bishop Iker: One draft of the statement made mention of "work with our colleagues within ECUSA and the primates," but some of the more centrist bishops objected on the grounds that it might be interpreted to endorse border crossing, so we changed it. There's an interesting story there, as well. The final statement was originally phrased, "We pledge ourselves to work with our episcopal colleagues..." with "episcopal" spelled using a lower-case "e." Somewhere between our agreeing to the statement, and it getting released to the public, that lower-case "e" became a capital "E," implying that we were limiting our scope of partners only to colleagues in ECUSA.

Greg Griffith: Did the bishops at Camp Allen have knowledge of what the Kigali statement contained?

Bishop Iker: A summary of the points in the Kigali statement came to some of us via telephone.

Greg Griffith: When did that happen?

Bishop Iker: I believe it was late Thursday afternoon, but I didn't see the complete, official statement until Friday afternoon.

Greg Griffith: But there was never any intention to respond to it through your statement?

Bishop Iker: No. Again, this meeting was held not to craft a reply to Kigali, but to signal, in an official capacity, our desire to remain a part of the communion under the terms of Windsor. This was a letter from bishops who want to comply with Windsor, to other ECUSA bishops, that said, "For the sake of the communion, we think you should join us." That's why Bishop Wolf, who voted for Gene Robinson, was able to sign it - because while she might have personal differences with Lambeth 1.10, she recognizes that it is nonetheless the mind of the communion, and that Windsor is the way forward in communion. It's not unlike Archbishop Williams, about whom it's been reported that he has personal views more accommodating of the homosexual movement than are expressed in Lambeth 1.10, but he recognizes that it is the mind of the communion right now, and institutionally, he's going to support it.

Greg Griffith: So there was none of the compromise that we all dreaded, and which we talked about before the meeting?

Bishop Iker: I don't believe so. I had my own misgivings about the meeting, because I think anyone who wants to be Windsor-compliant needs to be a member of the Network. I told my fellow bishops, "I'm willing to go to Camp Allen and talk to non-Network bishops who want to be Windsor compliant, but I first want to know why they haven't joined the Network."

Greg Griffith: Do you think the statement the bishops signed will cause more bishops to join the ranks of the Windsor-compliant?

Bishop Iker: I don't know. I just don't know.

Greg Griffith: Bishop, thank you for your leadership, and thank you for taking the time to talk with us.

Bishop Iker: Thank you for what you and your folks are doing.

What lives and abides forever?

Well, God is in His heaven
And we all want what’s His
But power and greed and corruptible seed
Seem to be all that there is.

B. Dylan

Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

I Peter 22-23

Click on headline above for Dylan's "Blind Willie McTell," performed September 2, 2006, in Cooperstown, NY.

Tinfoil hat tip to RWB. You are the best. Read his article on Dylan in the October issue of the Weekly Standard.

Anglican Alert: Code Orange - "If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break"

BB NOTE: So what do you think is the levee?

The Levee's Gonna Break

If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
Everybody saying this is a day only the Lord could make

Well, I worked on the levee, Mama, both night and day
I worked on the levee, Mama, both night and day
I got to the river and I threw my clothes away

I paid my time and now I'm good as new,
I paid my time and now I'm as good as new.
They can't take me back unless I want 'em to

If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
Some of these people gonna strip you of all they can take

I can't stop here I ain't ready to unload
I can't stop here I ain't ready to unload
Riches and salvation can be waiting behind the next bend in the road

I picked you up from the gutter and this is the thanks I get
I picked you up from the gutter and this is the thanks I get
You say you want me to quit ya, I told ya, 'No, not just yet.'

Well, I look in your eyes, I see nobody other than me
I look in your eyes, I see nobody other than me
I see all that I am and all I hope to be

If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
Some of these people don't know which road to take

When I'm with you, I forget I was ever blue
When I'm with you, I forget I was ever blue
Without you there's no meaning in anything I do

Some people on the road carryin' everything that they own
Some people on the road carryin' everything they own
Some people got barely enough skin to cover their bones

Put on your cat clothes, mama, put on your evening dress
Put on your cat clothes, mama, put on your evening dress
Few more years of hard work, then there'll be a 1,000 years of happiness

If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
I tried to get you to love me, but I won't repeat that mistake

If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
Plenty of cheap stuff out there and still around that you take

I woke up this morning, butter and eggs in my bed
I woke up this morning, butter and eggs in my bed
I ain't got enough room to even raise my head.

Come back, baby, say we never more will part
Come back, baby, say we never more will part
Don't be a stranger with no brain or heart

If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
If it keep on rainin', the levee gonna break
Some people still sleepin', some people are wide awake

Dylan 2006

Saturday, September 23, 2006

BabyBlueOnline VideoCast: Episode One - Inconceiveable!

(BB NOTE: VIdeo should be up shortly unless I need to get out the tinfoil hat). Okay, I was inspired by Kevin (of CTSix fame) and his venture into videocasting. I will never be able to rise to his greatness, but BabyBlueOnline thought it'd be fun to give it a try! Pirates unite! -bb

Windsor Bishops affirm "safe space" for Windsor-compliant parishes - when read along side the Kigali Communiqué we see hope

I've been reflecting on the Windsor Bishops Letter and what strikes me is what it doesn't say, perhaps more so than what it does. For example, the bishops affirm "that many congregations within The Episcopal Church need a safe space within which to live out the integrity" (now isn't that an ironic choice of words) "of their faith in compliance with the Windsor Report." It goes on to state that there are other congregations that do not accept the Windsor Report - but they take the recognition much further with the Windsor-compliant parishes. They recognize (as 815 and General Convention do not) that we need a safe space.

In addition, they also affirmed "the need of some among us for an alternative primatial relationship." They defended this need by clearly stating that "This response does not weaken our fundamental theological and ecclesial commitments" (which is precisely what broke down at the New York Summit - that it is inconceivable to 815 that dioceses and bishops could come under the jurisdiction of a different primate). In fact, the Windsor Bishops state emphatically that "our unity has strengthened them, and for this we thank God." They are not calling for a "why can't we all just get along and be happy" approach - but in fact show a true liberalism (in opposition to the counterfeits liberalism of canonical hardliners) in that unity comes from rejecting heresy - that affirming structures does not equate affirming unity. What is true unity is found in common biblical faith centered on the risen Lord Jesus Christ. This is The Church.

The Episcopal Church has made a terrible mistake in thinking that structures are the church. That is emphatically not true. It is Jesus Christ and His Word that binds us together and the Windsor Bishops dramatically breakthrough to that truth.

The letter states that they "pledge ourselves to work with our Episcopal colleagues to care for all God's people in our dioceses" but what it doesn't say is in what structure will that be done. We assume - because we are still operating under the assumption that church = structure - but that assumption has to be put to rest. This letter does not say that. It pledges care - but it doesn't say how.

What also strikes me is who didn't sign the letter. This is a Windsor-compliant letter and may be addressed to the Episcopal House of Bishops - but the real audience is the Primates of the Anglican Communion.

We have a separation - and this letter identifies that separation through the positive, rather than the negative. These bishops pledge to find unity in the faith - not the structures. And that hits close to home.

When we read this letter along side this portion of the Kigali Communiqué, what do we see? Let's take a look:

"We have asked the Global South Steering Committee to meet with the leadership of the dioceses requesting Alternative Primatial Oversight, in consultation with the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Network and the ‘Windsor Dioceses’, to investigate their appeal in greater detail and to develop a proposal identifying the ways by which the requested Primatial oversight can be adequately provided."

It is clear that the Windsor Bishops are opening the door for this to go forward in North America by refusing to denounce alternative primatial oversight. And what does that mean?

It means hope.


Friday, September 22, 2006

Anglican Global South Bishops Issue Communique

The Kigali Communique
Global South Primates’ Meeting
The Anglican Communion
Kigali, Rwanda September 2006

1. As Primates and Leaders of the Global South Provinces of the Anglican Communion we gathered at the Hotel des Mille Collines in Kigali, Rwanda, between 19th and 22nd September 2006. We were called together by the Global South Steering Committee and its chairman, Archbishop Peter J. Akinola. Twenty provinces were represented at the meeting*. We are extremely grateful for the warm welcome shown to us by the Right Honorable Bernard Makuza, Prime Minister of the Republic of Rwanda, and the hospitality provided by Archbishop Emmanuel Kolini, members of the House of Bishops of the Church of Rwanda and all of the members of the local organizing committee.

2. We have gathered in Rwanda twelve years after the genocide that tragically engulfed this nation and even its churches. During this time Rwanda was abandoned to its fate by the world. Our first action was to visit the Kigali Genocide Museum at Gisozi for a time of prayer and reflection. We were chastened by this experience and commit ourselves not to abandon the poor or the persecuted wherever they may be and in whatever circumstances. We add our voices to theirs and we say, “Never Again!”

3. As we prayed and wept at the mass grave of 250,000 helpless victims we confronted the utter depravity and inhumanity to which we are all subject outside of the transforming grace of God. We were reminded again that faith in Jesus Christ must be an active, whole-hearted faith if we are to stand against the evil and violence that threaten to consume our world. We were sobered by the reality that several of our Provinces are presently in the middle of dangerous conflicts. We commit ourselves to intercession for them.

4. We are very aware of the agonizing situation in the Sudan. We appreciate and commend the terms of the Sudanese Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the North and the South. We dare not, however, close our eyes to the devastating situation in Darfur. We are conscious of the complexities but there must be no continuation of the slaughter. We invite people from all of the Provinces of the Anglican Communion and the entire international community to stand in solidarity with the men, women and children in Darfur, Sudan.

5. We are here as a people of hope and we have been greatly encouraged as we have witnessed the reconciling power of God’s love at work as this nation of Rwanda seeks to rebuild itself. We have been pleased to hear of positive developments in the neighboring country of Burundi as they have recently completed a cease-fire agreement between their government and the Palipehutu-FNL. We are also beginning to see an end to the conflict in Northern Uganda and we note that the Democratic Republic of the Congo is approaching a historic election that offers promise for a peaceful future. All of these developments are occasions for hope for the future.

6. We have met here as a growing fellowship of Primates and leaders of churches in the Global South representing more than 70 percent of the active membership of the worldwide Anglican Communion. We build on and reaffirm the work of our previous meetings, especially our most recent gathering in Egypt in October 2005. We are mindful of the challenges that face our Communion and recommit ourselves to the abiding truth of the Holy Scriptures and the faithful proclamation of the whole Gospel for the whole world. We recommit ourselves to the vision of our beloved Communion as part of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

7. We recognize that because of the ongoing conflict in the Communion many people have lost hope that we will come to any resolution in the foreseeable future. We are grateful therefore, that one sign of promise is the widespread support for the development of an Anglican Covenant. We are delighted to affirm the extraordinary progress made by the Global South task group on developing an Anglican Covenant. For the past year they have labored on this important task and we look forward to submitting the result of their labor to the rest of the Communion. We are pleased that the Archbishop of Canterbury has recognized the exemplary scholarship and leadership of Archbishop Drexel Gomez in asking him to chair the Covenant Design Group and look forward with anticipation to the crucial next steps of this historic venture. We believe that an Anglican Covenant will demonstrate to the world that it is possible to be a truly global communion where differences are not affirmed at the expense of faith and truth but within the framework of a common confession of faith and mutual accountability.

8. We have come together as Anglicans and we celebrate the gift of Anglican identity that is ours today because of the sacrifice made by those who have gone before us. We grieve that, because of the doctrinal conflict in parts of our Communion, there is now a growing number of congregations and dioceses in the USA and Canada who believe that their Anglican identity is at risk and are appealing to us so that they might remain faithful members of the Communion. As leaders of that Communion we will work together to recognize the Anglican identity of all who receive, hold and maintain the Scriptures as the Word of God written and who seek to live in godly fellowship within our historic ordering.

9. We deeply regret that, at its most recent General Convention, The Episcopal Church gave no clear embrace of the minimal recommendations of the Windsor Report. We observe that a number of the resolutions adopted by the Convention were actually contrary to the Windsor Report. We are further dismayed to note that their newly elected Presiding Bishop also holds to a position on human sexuality – not to mention other controversial views – in direct contradiction of Lambeth 1.10 and the historic teaching of the Church. The actions and decisions of the General Convention raise profound questions on the nature of Anglican identity across the entire Communion.

10. We are, however, greatly encouraged by the continued faithfulness of the Network Dioceses and all of the other congregations and communities of faithful Anglicans in North America. In addition, we commend the members of the Anglican Network in Canada for their commitment to historic, biblical faith and practice. We value their courage and consistent witness. We are also pleased by the emergence of a wider circle of ‘Windsor Dioceses’ and urge all of them to walk more closely together and deliberately work towards the unity that Christ enjoins. We are aware that a growing number of congregations are receiving oversight from dioceses in the Global South and in recent days we have received requests to provide Alternative Primatial Oversight for a number of dioceses. This is an unprecedented situation in our Communion that has not been helped by the slow response from the Panel of Reference. After a great deal of prayer and deliberation, and in order to support these faithful Anglican dioceses and parishes, we have come to agreement on the following actions:

a. We have asked the Global South Steering Committee to meet with the leadership of the dioceses requesting Alternative Primatial Oversight, in consultation with the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Network and the ‘Windsor Dioceses’, to investigate their appeal in greater detail and to develop a proposal identifying the ways by which the requested Primatial oversight can be adequately provided.

b. At the next meeting of the Primates in February 2007 some of us will not be able to recognize Katharine Jefferts Schori as a Primate at the table with us. Others will be in impaired communion with her as a representative of The Episcopal Church. Since she cannot represent those dioceses and congregations who are abiding by the teaching of the Communion we propose that another bishop, chosen by these dioceses, be present at the meeting so that we might listen to their voices during our deliberations.

c. We are convinced that the time has now come to take initial steps towards the formation of what will be recognized as a separate ecclesiastical structure of the Anglican Communion in the USA. We have asked the Global South Steering Committee to develop such a proposal in consultation with the appropriate instruments of unity of the Communion. We understand the serious implications of this determination. We believe that we would be failing in our apostolic witness if we do not make this provision for those who hold firmly to a commitment to historic Anglican faith.

11. While we are concerned about the challenges facing our Anglican structures we are also very much aware that these issues can be a distraction from the work of the Gospel. At our meeting in Kigali we invested a great deal of our time on the day-to-day challenges that confront our various Churches including poverty eradication, HIV/AIDS, peace building and church planting. We were enormously encouraged by the reports of growth and vitality in the many different settings where we live and serve.

12. We received a preliminary report from the Theological Formation and Education (TFE) Task Force. We were pleased to hear of their plans to provide opportunities for theological formation from the most basic catechism to graduate level training for new and existing Anglican leaders. We request that all Global South provinces share their existing Catechisms and other educational resources with the TFE Task Force for mutual enrichment. We were pleased by their determination to network with other theological institutions and theologians in the Global South as well as with scholars and seminaries who share a similar vision for theological education that is faithful to Scripture and tradition.

13. We were blessed by the presence of a number of Economic Officers (Advisors) from around the Communion. Their determination to find creative ways to offer means of Economic Empowerment at various levels throughout the provinces of the Global South was an inspiration to all of us and resulted in the issuing of a separate summary statement. We note especially their proposed Ethical Economic and Financial Covenant that we adopted as Primates and commended for adoption at all levels of our Provinces. We were impressed by their vision and fully support their proposal to convene an Economic Empowerment consultation in 2007 with participation invited from every Global South Province.

14. We received ‘The Road to Lambeth,’ a draft report commissioned by the Primates of the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa (CAPA) which they have commended to their churches for study and response. It highlights the crisis that now confronts us as we consider the future of the Lambeth Conference. We commend this report for wider reflection.

15. We were challenged by a presentation on the interface between Christianity and Islam and the complex issues that we must now confront at every level of our societies throughout the Global South. We recognized the need for a more thorough education and explored a number of ways that allow us to be faithful disciples to Jesus Christ while respecting the beliefs of others. We condemn all acts of violence in the name of any religion.

16. Throughout our time together in Kigali we have not only shared in discussions such as these we have also spent time together in table fellowship, prayer and worship. We are grateful that because of the time that we have shared our lives have been strengthened and our love for Christ, His Church and His world confirmed. Accordingly, we pray for God’s continued blessing on all members of our beloved Communion that we might all be empowered to continue in our mission to a needy and troubled world.

To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy — to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen. (Jude 1:24-25)

* Provinces Represented:

Bangladesh**, Burundi, Central Africa, Church of South India, Congo, Indian Ocean, Jerusalem and Middle East, Kenya, Myanmar, Nigeria, Philippines**, Rwanda, Southern Africa, South East Asia, Southern Cone, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, West Africa, West Indies (** Not present but represented)


Windsor Bishops Issue Statement

A Letter to the House of Bishops of The Episcopal Church
St. Matthew’s Day, 2006

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:

We, the undersigned bishops, have met together at Camp Allen in the Diocese of Texas from September 19-22. We understand ourselves to be catholic bishops within the Anglican Communion and have met to contribute to our future life within this Communion. We are writing to you as fellow bishops in The Episcopal Church, in the knowledge that many others in our Province and around the world have expressed an interest in this meeting.

We have gathered with a common desire to work for the unity of the Church, as well as for the integrity and vitality of our own Province and the Anglican Communion as a whole.

We are grateful for the helpful briefing from the Archbishop of Canterbury, brought to us through the Bishops of Durham and Winchester. We have corresponded in turn with the Archbishop and communicated our hopes with respect to continuing in full constituent Communion membership. It is our intention to offer a faithful and dynamic witness within the Episcopal Church.

We confess our faith in Jesus Christ as the Way, the Truth and the Life – the faith that is uniquely revealed in the Holy Scriptures, set forth in the catholic Creeds, and to which the historic Anglican formularies bear witness.

We are committed to the conciliar character of our Communion. Consistent with the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Holy Cross Day letter to the Primates, it is our clear sense that General Convention of 2006 did not adequately respond to the request made of The Episcopal Church by the Communion through the Windsor Report and the Primates at Dromantine. These requests include explicit moratoria regarding church discipline and order. We express our regret, on behalf of ourselves, for those actions with which the Windsor Report was concerned.

We accept and affirm the Windsor Report and view adherence to it as furthering the vocation to heal the breaches within our own Communion and in our ecumenical relationships. Furthermore, we endorse the recommendation of the Windsor Report, as supported by the Archbishop of Canterbury, for the development of an Anglican Covenant.

The Windsor Report properly belongs within the larger framework of Anglican teaching, as expressed, not least, in successive Lambeth Conferences, including the resolutions of Lambeth 1998 (among which is Resolution 1.10). We understand this to be the mind of the Communion for teaching and discipline.

We recognize that many congregations within The Episcopal Church need a safe space within which to live out the integrity of their faith in compliance with the Windsor Report. We also recognize that there are some congregations that do not accept the provisions of the Windsor Report. We pledge ourselves to work with our Episcopal colleagues to care for all God’s people in our dioceses.

Within our group are needs for various levels of response to the conflicts in the church. While here we have worked diligently to achieve unity across these lines. We recognize the need of some among us for an alternative primatial relationship. This recognition does not weaken our fundamental theological and ecclesial commitments. Rather, our unity has strengthened them, and for this we thank God.

It is our hope and prayer that through our fellowship we can contribute to the renewal of our Province’s life within the Communion. We invite others who share our concern and position to join us in our common work on behalf of the church, and we plan to meet again early in the new year. We hope that those of you who share our commitments will find yourselves able to join us then, as we continue our work.

We ask for your prayers and assure you of ours.

In the name of Christ Jesus,

The Rt. Rev. Mark L. MacDonald
Diocese of Alaska

The Rt. Rev. William H. Love
Diocese of Albany

The Rt. Rev. John W. Howe
Diocese of Central Florida

The Rt. Rev. James M. Stanton
Diocese of Dallas

The Rt. Rev. Jack L. Iker
Diocese of Forth Worth

The Rt. Rev. Michael G. Smith
Diocese of North Dakota

The Rt. Rev. Edward S. Little
Diocese of Northern Indiana

The Rt. Rev. C. Wallis Ohl, Jr.
Diocese of Northwest Texas

The Rt. Rev. Robert W. Duncan
Diocese of Pittsburgh

The Rt. Rev. Keith L. Ackerman
Diocese of Quincy

The Rt. Rev. Geralyn Wolf
Diocese of Rhode Island

The Rt. Rev. Jeffrey N. Steenson
Diocese of Rio Grande

The Rt. Rev. John-David Schofield
Diocese of San Joaquin

The Rt. Rev. Edward L. Salmon
Diocese of South Carolina

The Rt. Rev. John B. Lipscomb
Diocese of Southwest Florida

The Rt. Rev. Peter H. Beckwith
Diocese of Springfield

The Rt. Rev. Bertram N. Herlong;
Diocese of Tennessee

The Rt. Rev. Don A. Wimberly
Diocese of Texas

The Rt. Rev. James M. Adams
Diocese of Western Kansas

The Rt. Rev. D. Bruce MacPherson
Diocese of Western Louisiana

The Rt. Rev. Gary R. Lillibridge
Diocese of West Texas

Thursday, September 21, 2006

"From Crayons to Perfume" - Bob Dylan "zings" Bill Clinton - again

On this week's "Theme Time Radio Hour," (topic: "School") Bob Dylan "zings" Bill Clinton again with this quote:

"That’s Lulu, with the title track of a Sidney Poitier movie from nineteen and sixty-seven where he plays a schoolteacher in a tough London high school," Dylan comments after playing the original sountrack of To Sir With Love. "Look for Lulu playing one of the students. I love this version of To Sir With Love. Perhaps the weirdest version I ever heard was the one Michael Stipe and Natalie Merchant sang during the presidential inauguration of Bill Clinton--definitely a man who could take you from 'crayons to perfume,'" Dylan added.

Tinfoil hat tip to RWB.

Nigerian Christians flee after Muslim rioters burns their churches and homes

KANO, Nigeria (Sept 21)---Hundreds of Christians sought refuge at police headquarters in a predominantly Muslim Nigerian town Thursday after rioters protesting alleged blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad attacked and burned churches, Christian homes and businesses, residents and police said.

Violence broke out in Dutse, the capital of Nigeria's northern Jigawa state, Wednesday after thousands of Muslim youth poured out on the streets to protest alleged blasphemy by a Christian woman, resident Emeka Nworah said.

It was unclear what the offensive statement was that sparked the rioting. Some said it was a market dispute, while others said she made a statement against Muhammad days earlier.

Several churches, homes and businesses belonging to the city's minority Christians were set ablaze and destroyed in the rampage. Police confirmed the violence.

"The disturbances are unfortunate but the situation is now under control," senior police official Kieran Dudari told reporters.

No deaths were reported but residents said many people were injured. Six churches were burnt, along with an unspecified number of homes and shops, police said.

Nworah was among Dutse residents who escaped to Kano in search of transportation to their home states in the mainly Christian south.

More than 1,000 people, mainly Christians, were still camped in the open field at state police headquarters in Dutse on Thursday, too scared to go back to their homes, witnesses and police said.

Nigeria 's 130 million people are roughly split between a south dominated by Christians and a north mainly populated by Muslims, with sectarian violence breaking out often.

Thousands of Nigerians have died in sectarian strife since 2000, when mostly Muslim northern states began implementing Islamic Shariah law.

Earlier this year, more than 120 people were killed in attacks across the country sparked by Muslim protests over cartoons published in Europe caricaturing Prophet Muhammad.

The International Herald Tribune |

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

"A Day in the Life of The Edge"

Bono turns filmmaker. Money quote: "Go away. No. I don't want to be on the news, man. You want to be on the news, I don't want to be - I don't need to be on the news. You want me to trust you?"
-The Edge, aka Dave Evans. Another rose by any other name.

How is TEC doing since the release of the Dromantine Communique by the Primates of the Anglican Communion?

From the Dromantine Communique (February 20-25, 2005)

13. We are persuaded however that in order for the recommendations of the Windsor Report to be properly addressed, time needs to be given to the Episcopal Church (USA) and to the Anglican Church of Canada for consideration of these recommendations according to their constitutional processes.

STATUS: Done. The Anglican primates waited another year and a half for The Episcopal Church General Convention to meet in June 2006.

14. Within the ambit of the issues discussed in the Windsor Report and in order to recognise the integrity of all parties, we request that the Episcopal Church (USA) and the Anglican Church of Canada voluntarily withdraw their members from the Anglican Consultative Council for the period leading up to the next Lambeth Conference. During that same period we request that both churches respond through their relevant constitutional bodies to the questions specifically addressed to them in the Windsor Report as they consider their place within the Anglican Communion. (cf. paragraph 8)

STATUS: Done. The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada have voluntarily withdrawn (though they still sent their representatives to Nottingham anyway and discovered the ACC was serious) their membership from the ACC. This will continue at least through 2008.

15. In order to protect the integrity and legitimate needs of groups in serious theological dispute with their diocesan bishop, or dioceses in dispute with their Provinces, we recommend that the Archbishop of Canterbury appoint, as a matter of urgency, a panel of reference to supervise the adequacy of pastoral provisions made by any churches for such members in line with the recommendation in the Primates's’ Statement of October 2003 (xii). Equally, during this period we commit ourselves neither to encourage nor to initiate cross-boundary interventions.

STATUS: Done, but nothing has actually been accomplished by this group in over a year and a half. Hope springs eternal.

16. Notwithstanding the request of paragraph 14 of thiscommunique, we encourage the Anglican Consultative Council to organise a hearing at its meeting in Nottingham, England, in June 2005 at which representatives of the Episcopal Church (USA) and the Anglican Church of Canada, invited for that specific purpose, may have an opportunity to set out the thinking behind the recent actions of their Provinces, in accordance with paragraph 141 of the Windsor Report.

STATUS: Done. The Episcopal Church did arrive at Nottingham with their withdrawn ACC representatives, the Presiding Bishop, some other Episcopal leaders and with copies "To Set Our Hope In Christ" in hand, but failed to make the biblical case for the recent actions of the Province. The ACC responded by voting in more membership into the ACC from the Global South by including the Primates as members.

17. In reaffirming the 1998 Lambeth Conference Resolution 1.10 as the present position of the Anglican Communion, we pledge ourselves afresh to that resolution in its entirety, and request the Anglican Consultative Council in June 2005 to take positive steps to initiate the listening and study process which has been the subject of resolutions not only at the Lambeth Conference in 1998, but in earlier Conferences as well.

STATUS: Half-Done. General Convention passed Resolution A165 which commends a listening process, but then redefined it to promote a "greater common understanding might be obtained on the underlying issue of same gender relationships" only. The resolution also calls for another paid-staff member to be added to the staff of the National Church office.

18. In the meantime, we ask our fellow primates to use their best influence to persuade their brothers and sisters to exercise a moratorium on public Rites of Blessing for Same-sex unions and on the consecration of any bishop living in a sexual relationship outside Christian marriage.

STATUS: Major failure. General Convention refused to issue a moratorium on public Rites of Blessings for Same-sex uinions or on the consecration of any bishop living in a sexual relationship outside of Christian marriage.

19. These strategies are intended to restore the full trust of our bonds of affection across the Communion.

STATUS: The bonds of affection across the Communion are broken by the inability of The Episcopal Church at General Convention 2006 to issue the moratoriums. Same Sex blessings continue to be authorized in The Episcopal Church only last weekend and the Diocese of Newark has included candidates that violate this request. The Presiding Bishop and the Presiding Bishop-elect, as well as the House of Bishops have refused to exercise their call to defend the faith and continue to permit these official activities to continue.


Living Church lists bishops attending Camp Allen

Roster of Bishops Present at Camp Allen Meeting

The following list of bishops were reported to The Living Church as being present on the first day of a Sept. 19-22 meeting of “Windsor compliant” bishops hosted by the Rt. Rev. Don A. Wimberly, Bishop of Texas, at Camp Allen, a diocesan-owned camp and conference center located about 70 miles northwest of Houston.

The Rt. Rev. Keith Ackerman, Bishop of Quincy
The Rt. Rev. Jim Adams, Bishop of Western Kansas
The Rt. Rev. Peter Beckwith, Bishop of Springfield
The Rt. Rev. Robert Duncan, Bishop of Pittsburgh
The Rt. Rev. Bertram Herlson, Bishop of Tennessee
The Rt. Rev. Samuel Johnson Howard, Bishop of Florida
The Rt. Rev. John Howe, Bishop of Central Florida
The Rt. Rev. Jack Iker, Bishop of Fort Worth
The Very Rev. Mark Lawrence, bishop-elect of South Carolina
The Rt. Rev. Gary Lillibridge, Bishop of West Texas
The Rt. Rev. John Lipscomb, Bishop of Southwest Florida
The Rt. Rev. Edward Little, Bishop of Northern Indiana
The Rt. Rev. William H. Love, Bishop Coadjutor of Albany
The Rt. Rev. D. Bruce MacPherson, Bishop of Western Louisiana
The Rt. Rev. C. Wallis Ohl, Jr., Bishop of Northwest Texas
The Rt. Rev. Edward L. Salmon, Jr., Bishop of South Carolina
The Rt. Rev. John-David Schofield, Bishop of San Joaquin
The Rt. Rev. Michael G. Smith, Bishop of North Dakota
The Rt. Rev. James M. Stanton, Bishop of Dallas
The Rt. Rev. Jeffrey Steenson, Bishop of the Rio Grande
The Rt. Rev. Don A. Wimberly, Bishop of Texas
The Rt. Rev. Geralyn Wolf, Bishop of Rhode Island

The Rt. Rev. Anthony Burton, Bishop of Saskatchewan, Anglican Church of Canada

The Rt. Rev. Michael Scott-Joynt, Bishop of Winchester, Church of England

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Why can't we just get along?

What do we think about Jesus? What do we believe about Jesus? Are we ready to go where ever Jesus calls? Do what ever he asks, obey what he commands - or can we only go so far? When Jesus asked a question "What can a man give in exchange for his soul?" do we start to negotiate or do we realize there is only one answer? The future of this church and our eternal destiny depends upon our answer.

Click on the headline above and hear Bishop Martyn Minns, Rector of Truro Fairfax, in this extraordinary sermon in these extraordinary times as the 40 Days of Discernment continues.

A rose by any other name ...

Here at BabyBlueOnline we do not shy away from writing about Bob Dylan, otherwise known as Robert Zimmerman, otherwise known as Boo Wilbury, otherwise known as Jack Frost, otherwise known as Elston Gunn, otherwise known as Blind Boy Grunt, otherwise known as Elmer Johnson, otherwise known as Sergei Petrov, otherwise known as Lucky Wilbury - and those are just the names I know. Too bad certain blue meanies across the Potomac don't get it. Someone get Paul Hewson on the phone.

Introducing BabyBlueOnline LIVE

this is an audio post - click to play

Monday, September 18, 2006

One of the best music videos - ever

Click on the headline above.

NOTE FROM BB: Another view of modern times: is this finally the girl from the north country? Note the many many hints of Dylanesque trivia throughout the video - I suppose someone will make a list one day like they did with the art in the Jokerman video. What do you think Dylan is referring to when he alludes to a point of time "when the deal goes down?" Just who do you think he is implying he will be with "when the deal goes down?" Who will be with any of us at that moment? As always, Dylan tells layers and layers of a story.

LATER NOTE FROM BB: I was on the train this morning heading into the city when I had another thought about this video. It is edited in the style of a Dylan song, which is often ideas, images, phrases juxtaposed beside other ideas, images, and phrases. The video is edited and filmed in a similar fashion to a Dylan song, including the "home-movie" feel of the camera. This may be what Dylan was trying to do in his own films, be they Eat the Document or Renaldo and Clara. Bennett Miller, the director (who also directed the Oscar-winning performance of Philip Seymor Hoffman in his film, Capote) makes the film as though he was inside Dylan's head. Extraordinary achievement.

When the Deal Goes Down

By Bob Dylan, 2006

In the still of the night, in the world's ancient light
Where wisdom grows up in strife
My bewildered brain, toils in vain
Through the darkness on the pathways of life
Each invisible prayer is like a cloud in the air
Tomorrow keeps turning around
We live and we die, we know not why
But I'll be with you when the deal goes down

We eat and we drink, we feel and we think
Far down the street we stray
I laugh and I cry and I'm haunted by
Things I never meant nor wished to say
The midnight rain follows the train
We all wear the same thorny crown
Soul to soul, our shadows roll
And I'll be with you when the deal goes down

Well, the moon gives light and it shines by night
When I scarcely feel the glow
We learn to live and then we forgive
O'r the road we're bound to go
More frailer than the flowers, these precious hours
That keep us so tightly bound
You come to my eyes like a vision from the skies
And I'll be with you when the deal goes down

Well, I picked up a rose and it poked through my clothes
I followed the winding stream
I heard the deafening noise, I felt transient joys
I know they're not what they seem
In this earthly domain, full of disappointment and pain
You'll never see me frown
I owe my heart to you, and that's sayin' it true
And I'll be with you when the deal goes down

Bishop Bob Duncan talks about New York Summit and upcoming Camp Allen meeting - says 24 Diocesans expected in Houston

This online video is a ministry of

More Episcopal Bishops to Discuss Future of U.S. Church

A large group of diocesan bishops are gathering in Texas for a consultation this week to discuss the relationship between the U.S. Episcopal Church and other church leaders within the worldwide Anglican Communion.

The consultation at Camp Allen, Texas, will see nearly two dozen diocesan bishops contemplate the future of the Episcopal Church, USA. It has been reported that the number of bishops who support the objectives of the meeting is expected to grow rapidly after details become public, according to several people involved in planning.

The meeting, which will take place Sept. 19-22, is being organized by the Bishop of Texas, the Rt. Rev. Don Wimberly, for diocesan bishops, according to the Living Church Foundation.

In a statement posted on the diocesan website, Wimberly said the purpose of the consultation is to provide individual bishops and their dioceses with a way to maintain an “unimpaired relationship” with the spiritual head of the Anglican Communion, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, and the other primates within the worldwide denomination.

“Since this summer’s General Convention, I have sought a way in which I might help lead our diocese and, with other bishops, The Episcopal Church through the circumstances facing our Church today,” the bishop stated.

“My intention is to stay within The Episcopal Church and remain a part of the Anglican Communion even though I don’t believe General Convention’s response to the Windsor Report was sufficient.”

According to Wimberly, two members of the Church of England’s House of Bishops will help oversee the gathering. The Rt. Rev. Michael Scott-Joynt, Bishop of Winchester, and the Rt. Rev. N.T. Wright, Bishop of Durham, will attend with the blessing of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Since the conclusion of the 75th General Convention in June, Dr Williams has been consulting widely about the adequacy of the General Convention’s response to the Windsor Report.

In response to the July Convention, the archbishop has said the Episcopalians had “not produced a complete response” to Anglican concerns.

In fact, the General Convention, rather than allaying fears and divisions, actually increased tensions when the June meeting elected Katharine Jefferts Schori - an outspoken supporter of gay relationships – as the Church's next presiding bishop.

Since then, seven conservative dioceses, including Pittsburgh and Fort Worth, have rejected Jefferts Schori's leadership and asked Williams for oversight from elsewhere.

Some individual parishes have also announced plans to leave the American Episcopal Church, which has about 2.3 million members.

Dr Williams has already proposed a new two-tiered system for the Communion to keep those churches with the traditional biblical views on homosexuality as full members and to offer a lesser role to those with new ideas on the matter.

Though the proposal has received praise from some corners of the Communion, there is still a large proportion of the Church who say they cannot accept being in “communion” with those promoting Scripture in a way that is in complete contrast to their own beliefs.

Daniel Blake
Christian Post Correspondent

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Just in - Diocese of Quincy Requests Oversight; Joins seven other Episcopal Dioceses in appeal to Canterbury

Special synod leads to district joining seven others in distancing themselves from Episcopal Church in U.S.


of the Journal Star

GALESBURG - A special synod of the Episcopal Diocese of Quincy decided Saturday to seek oversight from an Anglican province other than the Episcopal Church. About 100 priests and deacons and 50 lay people overwhelmingly approved resolutions that "further distance themselves from the troubled Episcopal Church in the U.S.," according to a diocesan news release.

The request, made during the meeting at Grace Church in Galesburg, will go to the archbishop of Canterbury and leaders of the other Anglican Communion provinces.

The Diocese of Quincy joins seven other U.S. dioceses, including the southeast Illinois Diocese of Springfield, that have asked for alternative oversight since the Episcopal Church's triennial convention in June failed to declare a moratorium on election of noncelibate homosexual bishops. The moratorium had been requested by Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and other Anglican primates.

Bishop Keith Ackerman said the convention's actions could cause the U.S. province to be expelled from the 80 million-member Anglican Communion. The west-central Illinois diocese's constitution requires it to remain in good relationship with the other

Anglican provinces, Ackerman said.

The bishop said the day's focus was on "how can we stay in the Anglican Communion?"

"That's really the bottom line," Ackerman said.

The Rev. John Spencer, president of the diocese's standing committee, said another reason for the request was because of the theology of Presiding Bishop-elect Katharine Jefferts Schori. The Nevada bishop, elected presiding bishop of The Episcopal Church at the June General Convention, has approved blessings for same-sex unions in her diocese and also voted in 2003 to approve the election of Bishop Gene Robinson, an openly noncelibate homosexual, as bishop of New Hampshire.

"Quincy and the other dioceses are unwilling to accept the leadership of the controversial Schori," the news release stated.

The Diocese of Quincy legally is still a part of The Episcopal Church, Spencer said. Alternative oversight would mean a presiding bishop or archbishop other than Schori would consecrate a new Quincy bishop or would mediate disputes.

Synod delegates also "passed a strong resolution affirming the historic faith and practice of the Christian Church and repudiating actions of the Episcopal Church's national leadership that have sent the denomination into turmoil over the last three years and has driven many Episcopalians around the country to other churches," according to the news release.

Ackerman said that despite the controversial nature of the issues, a sense of unity and peace prevailed over the special synod.

"This diocese is not noted for reacting," Ackerman said. "It's noted for prayer and acting."

More reflections on the New York Summit

Inside the New York Summit

For a while late on Tuesday afternoon (September 12, 2006) it appeared as though a group of 10 bishops invited by the Archbishop of Canterbury to a Sept. 11-13 meeting in New York City would find a way to meet the needs of the seven dioceses which had requested alternative primatial oversight (APO) from him.

The meeting, around a large conference table at the Church Pension Group headquarters on Fifth Avenue, began more than three hours after the scheduled start time on Monday due to the cancellation of the Rev. Canon Kenneth Kearon’s flight from Ireland on Sunday. The two co-convenors spoke first. Virginia Bishop Peter James Lee introduced everyone and Southwest Florida Bishop John Lipscomb offered a prayer. Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold then spoke briefly and without notes, assuring those present that no solution could be imposed on The Episcopal Church. Canon Kearon, the facilitator, then read a three-and-a-half-page handwritten statement.

Describing the APO requests as unprecedented, Canon Kearon said the Archbishop of Canterbury had asked the group to see if they could agree on a process that was mutually satisfactory and suggested two additional dates to meet again, perhaps even to discuss other issues if the bishops were agreeable. After he finished, the participants were invited to contribute and for the remainder of the sessions, Canon Kearon mostly took notes and observed.

It soon became apparent that Canon Kearon and at least some of the bishops had not received a copy of the consolidated request for APO which had been sent to the Archbishop of Canterbury at his request in July. Another delay ensued while one of the bishops prepared and distributed copies of the 13-page report. Its details did not figure prominently during the remainder of the meeting, however.

In addition to Bishops Griswold, Lee and Lipscomb the participating bishops were Presiding Bishop-elect Katharine Jefferts Schori and Bishops Jack Iker of Fort Worth, Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh, Edward Salmon of South Carolina, James Stanton of Dallas, Mark Sisk of New York, Dorsey Henderson of Upper South Carolina, and Robert O’Neill of Colorado.

After the introductions and opening statements, a wide-ranging discussion ensued with bishops by turns giving their assessment of The Episcopal Church in the aftermath of the 65th, 72nd, 74th and 75th General Conventions. There was also anecdotal sharing about the local environment in which each bishop ministers. Nearly all of the discussion concerned human sexuality and the mandatory ordination of women.

After a day and a half of exchanges that at times were blunt and confrontational, the participants were exhausted, but they had produced the draft of a brief statement announcing that the seven dioceses whose bishops had requested APO would be receiving “pastoral care” from someone other than the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church. Rather than push ahead to complete a final statement that day, Bishops Iker and Duncan suggested that the group meet again in the morning. Whether they continued Tuesday or waited until the morning, neither Bishop Stanton nor Bishop O’Neil would be able to assist further with a final statement, because they both had to leave for other commitments.

The next day it quickly became apparent that some had developed second thoughts. Bishop Griswold said wider acceptance of the statement that they had in hand might prove problematic because Executive Council, the Presiding Bishop’s Council of Advice and the President of the House of Deputies among others had not been consulted ahead of time. Bishop Duncan said the agreement did not address Network parishes located in non-Network dioceses and Bishop Iker said the appeal was for oversight, not pastoral care. The final paragraph or so of the draft was then rewritten to reflect the published statement.

(The Rev.) George Conger and Steve Waring