By Michael Paulson
August 7, 2008
A month ago, the world's Anglican bishops flew off to London, hoping to do something to keep the world's third largest Christian family from falling apart over the ordination of an openly gay bishop in New Hampshire.
But as the bishops return to their dioceses around the world, the plight of the Episcopal Church, and its parent Anglican Communion, remains as muddled as ever. With conservatives contending that the denomination is moving toward schism and liberals arguing that the denomination is stabilizing, the path forward is unclear.
Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, head of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, said in an interview upon his return from London that he will continue to ordain gay clergy, which he called "pastorally important."
He also said that local priests will continue to bless same-sex marriages, although Shaw said that those priests are doing so on their own and that "I haven't authorized anybody to do anything."
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