Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Rearing its Ugly Head

I ran into someone very briefly at Mere Anglicanism who expressed surprise that WO was coming up so often--several questions were asked of the scholars panel and Common Cause panel about the issue and what sort of common life we can expect to be facing in the near future, when, and if, the dust settles.
'I thought it was a done deal', he said.
'Oh no. Its right there under the surface, ready to emerge the moment we have an inkling of calm,' I said.
I didn't get this sense from the sources one would expect--Bishop Iker for example. When he spoke about it he was extraordinarily gracious and thoughtful.
I got it from listening in sneakily to conversations at the conference, from things Matt said (Matt knows more about everything than I'm allowed to know), and, Of Course, from the online conversations that have gone on online over the last few years. Indeed, it resurfaced this morning, here, on Stand Firm.
Its hard, for me anyway, to think that we will resolve one set of problems and then jump immediately into another hot pan of dissension and division. I'd like to think that we could do the work of theological reflection and reception in a reasonable and calm manner and that both those of us ladies who are ordained and those Anglo Catholics who oppose us utterly could seek the truth together. Much in the way we've wanted revisionists to do any kind of theological work whatsoever. But I must say, when the rhetoric is dismissive and condescending on the AC side its hard to want to be conciliatory. I'm not by any means suggesting we 'dialogue' and 'get to know each other better'. Its entirely a theological matter, one which, if we seek God's face, will become clear. In the meantime I'd like to see more gracious charity from you Anglo catholics. You may not recognize my orders, and may I think your understanding of the sacraments is highly problematic, but we can both agree that we're in a Christian body and we're both trying to go towards God, rather than the revisionists opposite direction.
I can understand the worry. If two co-equal provinces are recognized in the US and the AMiA and Continuing Churches are 'encouraged' to join the new one without anything said or resolved about WO then essentially you've managed to shove it to the back burner. Which, if you're against it, is a very bad thing.
Which brings me back to my original point. I don't think there is real cause to worry. Once the dust settles WO won't long stay on low heat. It will come up. It will be debated and examined. The Lord will, as so many have noted, provide. And guide. And direct. And all that other stuff.

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