Monday, July 13, 2009

July 12, 2009

I very much enjoyed the UTO service. The music was wonderful. I thought the sermon on mission had a number of good points, which I twittered, along with the prayers of the people, and UTO ingathering.

I met with the deputation shortly after and we discussed a number of things. The consent for the Bishop of Ecuador Central came up in conversation. This is a major issue in a very divided diocese, where we have been aiding to restore health. The House of Bishops elected a fine man, The Rev. Luis Fernando Ruiz. He will bring skills of leadership, transparency, administration and a love of Jesus Christ to the office. He received an almost unanimous vote by the house at our March meeting. I believe that some of the dysfunctional elements of his diocese have attempted to disrupt this process throwing the House of Deputies into some confusion. We will receive the vote tomorrow: the 13th, God willing

We discussed the Title IV revision. A number of very fine brothers and sisters have worked on this revision. I very much believe our current Title IV serves us well. There is also a great deal of continued discussion in several areas of the proposed Title that I just don't feel are yet worked out. We will have to see what the House of Deputies does with this, but I am concerned that the level of structure needed for the new Title will be very burdensome for us, let alone a small diocese with limited resources.

We were back in session in the afternoon and moved pretty steadily through our resolutions. I am very pleased with the resolution on Immigration. We had a healthy discussion and I believe the resolution upholds the church's commitment to respect the dignity of human beings. Along with the Roman Catholic Church we are joining in a call for reform.

I was very proud of our own Mary MacGregor, director of leadership development,who spoke to ECW presidents and members on Sunday to accolades for her passion and expertise.

I had the honor and privilege of toasting (roasting) Bishop Wimberly at the Bishops' dinner tonight. What a great night of celebration for our retiring bishops. I was blessed to be asked and laughed and enjoyed my time listening to stories about the good people who have served with great hearts and a love for their church. I would say that there was a theme. The men who were honored last night were known for their dedication, their love of Jesus, their love of his church, their love for his people, their belief that that love is articulated in mission for the oppressed and those in need. They were also each known as friends in and of the House of Bishops. The histories and stories make me wish to be a servant bishop and a good bishop for the church, diocese, and Jesus.

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  • "Christianity is not a theory or speculation, but a life; not a philosophy of life, but a life and a living process." Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  • "Most people are willing to take the Sermon on the Mount as a flag to sail under, but few will use it as a rudder by which to steer." Oliver Wendell Holmes
  • "Perfection, in a Christian sense, means becoming mature enough to give ourselves to others." Kathleen Norris
  • "Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can." John Wesley
  • "The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried." G. K. Chesterton
  • "One of our great allies at present is the Church itself. Do not misunderstand me. I do not mean the Church as we see her spread out through all time and space and rooted in eternity, terrible as an army with banners. That, I confess, is a spectacle which makes our boldest tempters uneasy. But fortunately it is quite invisible to these humans." C. S. Lewis
  • "When we say, 'I love Jesus, but I hate the Church,' we end up losing not only the Church but Jesus too. The challenge is to forgive the Church. This challenge is especially great because the church seldom asks us for forgiveness." Henri Nouwen, Bread for the Journey
  • "Christians are hard to tolerate; I don't know how Jesus does it." Bono
  • "It's too easy to get caught in our little church subcultures, and the result is that the only younger people we might know are Christians who are already inside the church." Dan Kimball