During his Bible study at the morning Eucharist today, the Archbishop of Canterbury referred to William Stringfellow, a gay peace activist and human rights lawyer as ‘the greatest Episcopalian theologian and perhaps the greatest American theologian of the twentieth century… not the least of the gifts which the Episcopal Church has given the rest of us.’ (You can read more about Stringfellow here.)
A last minute resolution at the 2006 General Convention, B033, prevented the Episcopal Church from electing talented gay theologians and priests to the episcopacy in order to maintain relationships with other provinces in the Anglican Communion. Since then the House of Bishops have had several opportunities to consider the implications but the House of Deputies has not met since so an unprecedented special order has allowed time for informal discussion with the whole House. This process started today and will continue tomorrow.
The normal process of committee hearings happened too in a long, so long hearing which in some ways seemed to repeat the afternoon’s hearing at the Prayer Book, Music and Liturgy Committee.
There is no doubt that many people are ready to move the Church to a place where all God’s people can be elected to the positions where God is calling them regardless of sexual orientation.
And our message to the Archbishop is ‘Here we are, send us’.