Carol Platt Liebau: How the "Religious Left" Reacts

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

How the "Religious Left" Reacts

For years, orthodox American Episcopalians have been increasingly dismayed at the behavior of the liberal members of the Church, but have had no option but simply to put up with it. Now, finally, after a worldwide convention, the rest of the Anglican communion has ordered the Episcopal Church of the USA to stop blessing same-sex unions. It's part of an effort to avert a schism with more orthdox branches of the Church, mainly in Africa and Asia.

So how do the liberals in America react? They reply that they'd rather have a schism than stop the ordination of gays.

Typical was the reaction of the far-left All Saints Church in Pasadena, whose rector stated that blessings of same-sex unions would continue. So much for respect for Church unity.

For that matter, so much for respect for multiculturalism. When it turns out that those in the Third Word are more conservative than American liberals, they can expect to be ignored or subtly denigrated, as this passage from the Times story indicates:

Others said the sight this week of a small group of theologically conservative African leaders giving the U.S. church what many viewed as an ultimatum raised broad and troubling questions about power and authority in the Anglican Communion.

"This isn't fundamentally about sexuality or the place of gays and lesbians in the church," said the Rev. Ian T. Douglas, a professor at the Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, Mass.

"It's more about questions of identity and authority in a church that has moved from a monocultural Anglo-American alliance" to a church membership and power shifting to Africa, Asia and elsewhere.

In other words, it's apparently A-OK with these liberals for a small group of white men to be the ones in charge sometimes -- and empowered to singlehandedly change centuries of church doctrine, as long as it's in a leftward tradition.


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