More Episcopalians Split
No sooner do the media get busy playing up Mike Huckabee's statement that homosexuality is a sin than another large group of Christians decides that homosexuality is a sin:
FRESNO, California (Reuters) - An entire California diocese of the U.S. Episcopal Church voted to secede on Saturday in a historic split after years of disagreement over the church's expanding support for gay and women's rights.The split is necessary, given the gap between conservative Episcopalians and their leadership. Presiding Bishop ofthe U.S. Episcopal Church Katharine Jefferts Schori, illustrated that gap in her comment on the news that her church just got a lot smaller:
Clergy and lay representatives of the Episcopal Diocese of San Joaquin, based in Fresno in central California, voted to leave the church, which has been in turmoil since 2003 when U.S. Episcopalians consecrated their first openly gay bishop.
"We've seen a miracle here today," Bishop John-David Schofield said after the vote. "We are already outside the jurisdiction of the Episcopal Church.
We deeply regret their unwillingness or inability to live within the historical Anglican understanding of comprehensiveness.Comprehensiveness, of course, refers to tolerating internal differences between the faiths. But that's different than utterly failing to read and understand the Bible and the Christian way to address sin.
That homosexuality is a sin in the eyes of God is clear. There are multiple references, including New Testament references:
Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders. 1 Corinthians 6:9It's a sin, but clearly not the only sin. Christians who make it some great and special sin above other sins are no more correct than those who, out of comprehensiveness or whatever, pretend it's no sin at all.
Jefferts Schori and her flock are free to feel that their approach is theologically superior, but rather than think that those who leave the Episcopal church are hate-filled, they should consider that by refusing to accept homosexuality as sin-free, the departed may well be closer to God.