Sunday, February 15, 2009

Divide and Conquer

Gene Robinson and Susan Russell are both quoted in the March issue of The Advocate...

"The Episcopal Church is risking its life for gay and lesbian people," Robinson says. "We could have run in the opposite direction on this issue and avoided this split, but the church is not willing to do that, which I’m very proud of." So far the church has refused to accede to demands by conservatives to renounce Robinson and the blessing of same-sex unions by clergy. Robinson’s importance to the church was underlined last month when President Obama chose the bishop to deliver the invocation for his inaugural concert.


"Just like the Federal Marriage Amendment was used as a wedge issue in presidential politics, gays have been used in Anglican politics," says the Reverend Susan Russell, a priest at All Saints Church in Pasadena, Calif., and president of Integrity USA, a group working for gay inclusion in the Episcopal Church. She expects the church to move forward on approving marriage rites for same-sex couples as early as this summer.

"A lot of other mainline denominations are watching us very carefully, to see if we’re going to move forward,” Robinson says. "What's happening with us is part of what's happening in the culture in terms of fuller LGBT inclusion in our common life."

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