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The Episcopal Church: See No Evil Hear No Evil

The Episcopal Church: See No Evil Hear No Evil


David W. Virtue DD
January 12, 2015

The Episcopal Church can now rightly claim that it has consecrated to the sacred order of bishops: drunken bishops, closeted and uncloseted gay and lesbian bishops, bullying bishops, bi-sexual bishops, adulterous bishops, theologically errant bishops, liberal and progressive bishops who are vaguely creedal, with a handful (literally you can count them on one hand), orthodox bishops.

It is a remarkable record of achievement brought about by the clouding and fudging of language that includes, "generous orthodoxy", "inclusivity," "diversity," "progressivism," "sacred spaces" and much more. It can be safely said that the Episcopal Church has gone where no Church has gone before, and, if history is proven out, will continue down this pathway invoking God's love for absolutely everybody and on any given subject, including and especially, sexuality, perforce, and anything else it chooses to do or bless.

It is a Church without barriers in theology and morality...and to the episcopacy. "Sound teaching" as the Apostle Paul urged and advised, and sexuality within the biblical confines of man/woman in matrimony are not only not enforceable, but embraced as alternatives if not handicaps to a fuller, richer understanding of who God has become (in The Episcopal Church's mind and resolutions), including the possibility that "He" is no longer even necessary even when talking about the Supreme Being of the universe. "Mother God" and "Jesus our Mother" now mocks the traditional understanding of the Trinity and Scripture, but is openly embraced by the Church's Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

In any other age or time, a Church such as this would have hung its head in shame, would have been called out as "Laodicean" or at the very least "Ichabod" and consigned to Hell. The Apostle John writes of the Church of Laodicea, "You have acquired wealth and do not need a thing. But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked." TEC is worth $4 billion on the books, but is losing people at the rate of 1,000 a week to other Anglican jurisdictions, Rome, Orthodox churches, the Ordinariate, death and disillusionment.

The Church of Sardis (Rev. 3: 1-6) is described as a church with a reputation of being alive, but is in fact dead, a perfect description of TEC.

In Amish terms, it would have been "shunned"; in evangelical language, declared heretical and apostate, and those who attended would have been told "come ye out from among them and be separate", an admonition that was taken seriously enough by at least 100,000 Episcopalians resulting in the formation of the Anglican Church in North America.

The most recent outrage (and there have been many) of a drunken bishop killing a cyclist, then fleeing the scene of the crime and hiding behind a gated community so she wouldn't have to face her accusers is just the ass end of a long line of episcopal outrage and filth dating back more than 40 years. In the case of Bishop Suffragan Heather Cook, a half empty whisky bottle and a marijuana bong have become her own personal Eucharist.

This latest outrage will only hasten the church's demise, a demise now measured in double digit parish attendance with nearly half of all 6,700 parishes no longer able to afford a full time priest with 61 members on average. The average parishioner age is now in the mid 60's, guaranteeing that the denomination will expire within a generation.

Is it any wonder that the denomination grows smaller and smaller even as it openly espouses pansexuality, abortion, Euthanasia and assisted suicide?

It is a record that would have the likes of an Augustine, Cranmer, Ryle, Newman, the Wesley Brothers, Luther, Calvin, to name abut a few, rolling over in their graves. That an Episcopal lesbian seminary professor could cry out, "Abortion is a blessing and our job is not done," reaches down to the very bottom of a morally depraved church and those who lead it.

Many thought we had reached the bottom of the cesspool with the likes of Walter Righter, Jack Spong, Otis Charles, Gene Robinson and Mary Glasspool, but the Episcopal Church clearly keeps on finding new bottoms in the ecclesiastical tank of theological and moral sludge and outrage.

Millions of dollars spent on property lawsuits look increasingly like money badly spent, and still the coffers fill up with millions of dollars from terminally ignorant Episcopalians still bent on pouring their hard earned money into the institution with little knowledge that all they will get for their money is a plaque on a Columbarium and worse, churches they built and paid for sold for mosques and themselves eternally separated from God.

Ignorance is no longer bliss and folly is no longer wise. The vast majority of Episcopalians either don't know what is going on, or blithely turn their heads as if to say "not in my backyard." Sherry Shinogle captures this in her story The Ignorance of Episcopalians http://tinyurl.com/ob3n9wx She writes, "Most Episcopal Churches operate in vacuums with no idea what goes on outside the walls of their individual edifices. They function as separate entities having little or no relation with other Episcopal parishes or with what goes on at 815 the Church's national headquarters in New York City, nor for what passes as 'God's mission' by Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori."

It is going on in their front and backyard with new and revealing stories of venality, moral turpitude, spendthrift habits almost weekly, resulting in the national headquarters needing to be sold, even as small parishes die, whole congregations age, flee and die. Only 53% of parishes in the US now have a full time priest.

Those vibrant Evangelical parishes which are thriving are viewed as narrow-minded, homophobic and uninclusive even as they preach a gospel of sin and salvation, redemption, hope and God's transforming love. They are mocked and derided by liberals and progressives, at the same time viewed with a certain kind of parish envy.

The raw truth is that liberals and revisionists cannot start a church, plant or grow a church, they are forced to co-opt churches started by orthodox Episcopalians and then twist them into something quite different. IF ACNA had not been formed, the very stones would have cried out.

A gospel that saves no one and nothing is what The Episcopal Church has become. Presiding Bishop Jefferts Schori has refashioned The Episcopal Church in her own image built on the sand castles of her two predecessors, Frank Griswold and Edmond Lee Browning.

She makes no pretense in defending the faith once for all delivered to the saints, she cannot defend what she does not believe. The Church under her leadership has become little more than a social justice organization with a creed, having largely replaced the idea of heaven later with utopia now, damning the use of fossil fuel as its bishops increased their carbon footprint by jetting off to Asia to show support for a handful of Taiwanese Episcopalians. Amelioration in this life with little or no thought for the life to come and the eternal consequences of her actions now consumes Jefferts Schori and the HOB.

As St. John notes in his appeal to the Church at Ephesus, "Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place." (Rev. 2: 4-5)

David W. Virtue DD is the president of VIRTUEONLINE, www.virtueonline.org VOL is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to VOL.

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