Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Day Zero in the Happiest Place on Earth

Although Convention doesn’t officially begin until tomorrow, today sets the tone and gets things moving. During the morning the legislative committees meet for the first time to meet, greet and get organized. The World Missions committee is so inundated that they plan to have two subgroups – one to deal with B033 and related issues and the other to do everything else. Tonight they meet again – in the early stages of Convention the committees are where the action happens as they grapple with the hundreds of resolutions that have come from church committees, dioceses, bishops and deputies.

The energy and feeling--quite frankly--is nothing short of electric and excitement.

This afternoon Presiding Bishop Katherine Jefferts-Schori, and the President of the House of Deputies, Bonnie Anderson, will be addressing Convention in its first plenary session. They will be setting the tone for the work of Convention.

Last night the President of Integrity, Susan Russell, set the tone for our work in a passionate speech eloquently delivered from the top of a rickety patio chair. She said that people keep asking whether she’s optimistic and she replies, ‘optimistic but not complacent’.

That seems to be the mood here amongst our allies; we are optimistic that this Convention will move beyond the confines of B033. The time has come for the Episcopal Church to get on with the work that God has given us to do. The time has come to stop looking over our shoulder, and move on. We cannot allow fear of dissension to paralyze us and prevent us from working to spread the good news of freedom, grace and radical love. Integrity has witnessed at General Convention for thirty years. Full inclusion is not something that needs more time, more study or more sacrifice. LGBT Episcopalians
are not offerings for sacrifice but Christians ready to be used in the Church’s mission to bring all beings into reconciliation with God. Amen?

Read Susan's synopsis over at her blog--pretty great stuff.

While we didn’t catch Susan’s impromptu presidential address on tape, IntegriTV was at All Saints Pasadena for her pre-Convention sermon. Watch for it a bit later today.

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