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DEATH haunts church...Network leader says orthodox are powerless...diocesan news

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Two major deaths that occurred during the past week capture and frame the extent of the culture and theological wars raging in the US and the world. What happened in the US, Italy and Israel is breathless in its capacity to shock and shame on the one hand, while demanding our deepest respect on the other.

A woman (Roman Catholic) dies having had her nutritional life support system removed and the leader of the world's one billion Roman Catholics dies a public death who, while he lived, railed against a "culture of death".

The Episcopal Church pushes pansexual behavior as though it is the most normal thing in the world, and leaders of the three great Abrahamic faiths launch a united campaign to prevent poofs parading their shameless sexual behavior down main street Jerusalem with a Rabbi declaring "This is not the homo land, this is the holy land," adding, "This is nothing less than the spiritual rape of the Holy City."

It's a wonder we haven't heard from Frank Griswold or a revisionist Episcopal Bishop or two talking about how hateful the actions and words of these global religious leaders is and the hurt it causes a small hard core coterie of Episcopal pansexualists bent on changing the church's 2,000 year old teaching on sexual morality. Indeed the very silence of Dr. Rowan Williams, the leader of 80 million Anglicans speaks volumes. Why has he not joined hands with these world class leaders, and the Pope, to show his support for keeping Jerusalem and the holy places sacred and against these sick people and their deadly behavior?

Does he have one eye on Jeffrey John and the other on Frank Griswold? If he does he can kiss the Global South bishops and their people goodbye because they would stand fair and square with the Christian, Jewish and Islamic leaders on this one, and if they got vocal about it, embarrass the hell out of Williams to boot. Perhaps Williams thinks that Jerusalem will be built on England's green and pleasant lands and he doesn't care what these leaders think. After all, the Anglican leader showed a marked propensity for love and charity when he repeatedly embraced the late Arab leader Yasir Arafat, but showed no such "bonds of affection" for Ariel Sharon the Israeli leader. Clearly Frank Griswold's "bonds of affection" are showing up more as bondages of affliction.

But the Episcopal Church had a mini version of its own "Jerusalem" scene this week, when a choir invited to Trinity Church, Columbus, Georgia from St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church in Atlanta, was told they could not perform because St. Bart's rector, the Rev. William Thigpen is gay and living with a man, thus forcing the Rev. Jim Yeary, Trinity's interim rector to say that "it would not be an appropriate space, given their history and Trinity's history." Trinity's leaders cited biblical texts against homosexuality, as well as church tradition, in opposing Robinson's consecration. Brad Hughley, the choir director of St. Bartholomew's said the "disinvitation" was politically motivated and "unconscionable" declaring, "I think it's hateful."

It's not of course. Hatred has nothing to do with it. The reasons are spiritual and moral. Trinity's rector is saying that he will not showcase people to his congregation who are living in open and unrepentant sin. It's no different than having a man living in adultery or is openly fornicating (D039) and demanding he be heard and accepted.

Wrote one indignant VirtueOnline reader, "It is a great scandal, and viciously harmful to our children and sinful to elevate and showcase people (like Vickie Gene Robinson) to our children, when those people are living in and advocating unrepentant sin (in Vickie Gene's case, divorce, sodomy and heresy).

Louie Crew, the Episcopal Church's First Sodomite couldn't resist his own spin on the Columbus situation. This is what he said: "Will Episcopal neo-Puritans put the heads of lesbigay deputies in stocks in Columbus? Will they sell stylish chastity belts and other medieval paraphernalia in trendy boutiques? Or is this foolishness only for April 1st?" He signed himself "Lutibelle of the Alabama Belles/Louie."

It is interesting that the three religious heads say the action of allowing a gay pride parade in Jerusalem would "unleash destruction on the city" and they weren't talking about another or ongoing war between Arabs and Jews, they had a higher judgment in mind. Clearly no one wants a repeat of Sodom and Gomorrah.

Ironically a Koranic scholar predicted this week that the US will be hit in 2007 by a tsunami larger than that which recently struck Southeast Asia: The judgment of God perhaps?

THE DEATH OF POPE JOHN PAUL II dominated the news this week and I have added my own small contribution to this giant figure of the 20th century.

But this was the best Dr. Rowan Williams could say: "Pope John Paul was a leader of manifest holiness and a faithful and prayerful friend of the Anglican Church. We remember his life and ministry with thankfulness and hold the church that he led in our thoughts and prayers."

Frank Griswold's statement wasn't a whole lot better: "His voice and moral authority gave inspiration and hope to millions well beyond the Roman Catholic Church."

What is remarkable is not what these two men said but what they didn't say. When he says something more profound will Dr. Williams tell us how the Pope and his Curia told him not to endorse homosexuality in the Anglican Communion, that it could bring his whole church down around his ears? One doubts it. Griswold's tepid observations of Pope John Paul's death say nothing about the Pope's accomplishments over 26 years. One wonders, as Griswold looks at the Roman Catholic Church and its continued growth in the US despite horrible sex scandals, (which the church is dealing with), and the slow evisceration of orthodoxy in the Episcopal Church, that he doesn't wonder every day if V. Gene Robinson was worth it all? Is there something so deeply conflicted in Griswold himself that he would push the Episcopal Church to the edge of the abyss for a behavior that ultimately promotes death over life?

IN VIRGINIA this week, some 1,600 orthodox Episcopalians got word that they would have to suffer for their beliefs and be prepared even to be ejected from their denomination.

A two day rally for the faithful called "From Surviving to Thriving" heard Pittsburgh Episcopal Bishop Robert Duncan say that conservative groups within the Episcopal Church "cannot deliver a blessed thing" in terms of protecting beleaguered conservatives in liberal dioceses. For instance, he said, conservative clergy at six Connecticut parishes are being threatened with defrocking by their bishop. "Brothers and sisters," he said, "it will get worse for us." (You can read my story in today's digest about the Connecticut Six.) Another story in today's digest says that Rowan Williams has formally recognized the Network.

So Duncan is saying the Network bishops are powerless to save anybody and they won't cross diocesan lines to save beleaguered orthodox priests, and even bold statements by Canon David C. Anderson of the AAC won't do much good except to make headlines, and the work of EKKLESIA is finished because the Global South bishops know everything there is to know about what is going on here through the Internet, and godly priests caught in revisionist dioceses might just as well go pound sand or flee to godly dioceses if they can, or leave for another Anglican jurisdiction taking as many parishioners with them as possible. The only bishops, it seems, who are willing to cross lines are retired ECUSA bishops, AMIA bishops and David Moyer.

A final scenario might be for one or two priests to immolate themselves in front of the national cathedral in Washington DC as a public demonstration of godly persecution. Revisionist Bishop John Chane will preside.

THE DEATH OF TWO EPISCOPAL BISHOPS recently shows the extent of the puff and the corruption that is swept under the rug by the official spin doctors at the church's national headquarters in New York.

Navajoland Bishop Steven Plummer died at 60 of cancer, the first Navajo bishop in the Episcopal Church.

The official spin went like this. "Soft spoken and with an easy smile, Plummer was well known around the church as an advocate for Native American ministries. He was a shepherd in both a literal and figurative sense. He led the area mission on a path toward greater incorporation of Navajo traditions into Episcopal Church worship."

ENS conveniently forgot to to mention that he also seduced his underage nephew committing sodomy, pedophilia and incest and got away with it. Ed "the flexible" Browning, then presiding bishop was accused of reverse racism and the Navajoland people were divided with most wanting Plummer gone. Browning was too scared to touch it and after a brief reprimand and wampum repentance by the Indian bishop, Browning sent him back to work his 15 missions, four of which are vacant and the rest are run by Carol Tookey and James Leehan. The overflowing diocese has a total of 370 members. Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold will preside at his funeral and he will undoubtedly find some gracious speak words to say on that august occasion. Plummer's body will not lie under a wigwam.

Another bishop to bite the dust recently was Richard M. Trelease fifth BISHOP OF THE RIO GRANDE. The puff by The Living Church headlined him as "Champion of the Poor" and the official release from the Episcopal News Service wasn't much better. The TLC hailed him for his progressive views and as a tireless and outspoken advocate for the poor and disenfranchised. It forgot to mention that he was a tireless skirt chaser. In fact when I started on a story about him some years ago the facts were so appalling I gave up in disgust. A former bishop of the Rio Grande I spoke with this past week said his womanizing was notorious and well known in the House of Bishops. My source told me that at one point his womanizing reached a point where Trelease's own life was threatened by an irate husband to be and Trelease was forced to retire. He spent his waning years as a clothing salesman in an Albuquerque store.

In the DIOCESE OF CONNECTICUT the bishop, Andrew D. Smith has given six priests a deadline of April 15 to conform to his ECUSA worldview or face being tossed out of the church. Read this story, weep and pray for these godly men.

In the DIOCESE OF ALABAMA this week Bishop Henry Parsley censored a Sunday School class being offered by the Rev. John Michael van Dyke rector of Church of the Ascension in Montgomery who was about to address an adult month long class on the subject, "Where Do We Go From Here?"

Stand Firm Alabama reported on their website that the class which was to have been held at 9:15 was canceled when Bishop Henry Parsley told the Rev. van Dyke to bag it. In deference to the bishop, Rev. van Dyke complied with this request.

Whatever happened to the right of free speech not to mention free assembly?

In April 2004, when Parsley was approached with a question about how Integrity of Alabama's use of diocesan facilities could be reconciled with his statement that "the teachings of the diocese have not changed", Bishop Parsley stated he cannot control who uses what diocesan facilities. He compared Integrity USA to Daughters of the King.

"Yet in a moment of fear he abuses his power by silencing a Sunday School class in a single parish," wrote an irate parishioner to VirtueOnline. "Where is the ABC? Where is the Panel of Reference? Where are the Network Bishops? This and the Connecticut situation should make folks' blood boil. If the remnant that is the Network is capable of producing only thin blooded eunuchs for leaders, then it is not a remnant worth saving. If the ABC is not going to step in, then the Network should declare all bets are off, "adopt" the Connecticut Six, fund their legal expenses and pay their salaries and tell the ECUSA what is done to any of them is done to us all -- if it is war you want, it will be war that you have." Out of the mouths of laity.

ON A BRIGHTER NOTE All Saints' Pawleys Island will get a new rector. The Rt. Rev Chuck Murphy, rector emeritus at All Saints' Church, will step down making way for the Rev Terrell L. Glenn, Jr, to be the new rector of the 800-member congregation. Glenn has a track record in church planting, leaving the 400-member Church of the Apostles in Raleigh, NC which he started in 2000. He left the Episcopal Church because of its "theological decay" finally came to the conclusion that the most authentic place for him to be was Anglicanism," and joined the AMiA.

Glenn has already paid a courtesy call on South Carolina Bishop Ed Salmon as a bridge-building act, but the diocese and the church are still involved in a lawsuit over the ownership of the All Saints' property. Murphy will continue to be connected to All Saints' as the AMIA bishop overseeing it. All Saints' took part in the creation of the Anglican Mission and officially joined it last year. AMIA will continue to have headquarters in Pawleys Island.

THE WYNNEWOOD INSTITUTE, an organization based near Philadelphia, will host the celebrated English writer and philosopher Roger Scruton to lectures at The Villanova Conference Center, 601 Country Line Rd., Radnor, April 12th, at 7pm on how America and Western Civilization can best defend itself against current pressures not only from without but also from within. The evening's presentation will be titled "The Defense of the West: How to Begin."

THE NEXT TIME I write to you all it will be from Southeast Asia, free albeit briefly from the ECUSA cesspool. Please keep me in your prayers as I minister and am ministered too.

All blessings,

David W. Virtue DD

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